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Spore Galactic Adventures Review – Crsipy Gamer

Posted by ballightning on June 24, 2009

As the snaggletoothed humanoid gator gawks from the monitor, eager for his next space adventure, I wonder how I’m supposed to take this seriously. Sure, I’ve raised old Gatoroid from the planet Gatorade since he was nothing but a planarian — from Petri dish to galactic conqueror. But that wasn’t good enough, apparently. Spore wants more of my time, and Spore Galactic Adventures tries to give the most open-ended game ever more purpose.

So I suit up old Captain Fierce Ice and hit my newly expanded gaming universe. Prepare for blastoff; things are about to get weird.

To start with, the whole idea of reviewing an expansion pack is a little too much like going into a restaurant and ordering a meal just so you can critique the dessert. For most of us, the assumption is, if you liked your dinner, then a slice of pie to finish things off always goes down well. If you enjoyed Spore, then you’ll buy Galactic Adventures, right?\

But with the game industry growing more and more pirate-leery — and ever-so-slightly starting to freak out about the used-game market — expansions, add-ons and downloadable content have turned into something all their own. A few years ago Fallout 3 would have been fine as a standalone game. Now that title seems determined to have players download the entire post-apocalyptic U.S., one city at a time (presumably ending, we can hope, withNiagara Falls Out 3 — hoo hoo!). And the World of Warcraft is, arguably, nothing more than one giant piece of never-ending add-on content. Games have gone all postmodern with their endlessly iterating stories and big bang of possibility. Expansion just doesn’t seem the right word anymore.

With the release of Galactic Adventures, we can at once admire how well EA has handled the subject of expanding (or growing or reproducing or exploding or cloning) the seeming infinity of the original Spore, and wonder if that game was just a Trojan horse designed to sneak the Will Wright master plan for world domination onto the unsuspecting hard drives of gamers everywhere — like some sort of fun virus you just can’t shake.

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