I was at one time a huge fan of Spore on the PC. The game at first was engaging, fun, unique and developed by my top favorite Sim creator, Mr. Will Wright.
Now as much as I loved Spore, I did hate loading screens and consistent traveling back and forth between planets. A lot of back and forth and as quickly as the game captured me as a fan, it also grew boring at the same fast pace.
At any rate when I heard the news of Spore Creatures hitting my Nintendo DS I was pretty excited because I knew the game would not be as elaborate, and would make for a good ‘take me along with you’ type of limited spin off of the PC game. At the same time though I worried if this game would be too limited compared to my PC version of the game.
Luckily that was not the case.
Like the PC game you start off as this sad little creature with not much of a defense and strength system to you. You get a fast glimpse into exactly what is going on, and why you are even playing the game to begin with. Your plot is not so defined but you get the idea of good vs evil, and Spore Creatures for DS is no exception. Your mission is to defeat enemies, while attempting to become friends with other specie tribes.
Spore Creatures for DS is relatively easy enough and could be enjoyed by children in the age group of 7 and up. Younger kids may have a bit of difficulty with whats expected of them from the game.
Game play however is done up marvelously with a nice lush 3D environment for your little un-evolved spore to roam about. On his way, or her way of course, you will collect body parts and upgrades for your pathetic little creature to add to his body in order to go from an amoeba type thing, to a more interesting, stronger evolved version.
The customization is still there, just not as on key and picky as it was in the PC version, where you could tweak just about everything.
Defeating enemies is nothing like what you would find in the PC version. In Spore Creatures for Nintendo DS you basically do not have to do all too much to defeat an enemy, a quick stylus swipe and some fast movements with your thumbs and you are done.
The problem however I have with this game however is not necessarily the buzz kill of the lame battles, but the menus. They are a bit tired and tedious looking, especially in create mode. You really have to poke and dig around to get a full grasp of where your body parts are, and there is not much of a tutorial going on at all on how to go about customizing your little guy.
It will take some time, but eventually you get a feel for it, that is, if you have the patience.
Controls work pretty effortlessly in this particular title. I had no issues moving my Spore around, nor did I have any issues with the touchscreen being unresponsive or flawed. All in all the controls were done up nicely.
The graphics in this game are relatively unique. Your world is made up in neat and polished 3D platform, while your actual character is like something out of Paper Mario, featuring a 2D flat paper like appearance. Although it may sound ugly, your character is actually pretty neat looking while it runs about in a 3D environment. Colors could have been done up a little better however.
Things seem dark and hazy as far as color goes. Even when adding color to your spore, the color splat you choose to color your spore actually looks darker than what the swatch displays. For instance, you choose a pink swatch, and you end up with a purple like color. You can adjust the brightness levels, sure, but it still does not match up correctly.
The 3D world is neat and pretty, however the first thing I noticed was how very empty it felt, it just lacks in those little extras like flower bushes, or decorative elements that take environments to the next level, even if they do not add a dime to the game play itself.
Music and Sounds:
Small soft relaxing tunes hum and chime happily in the background of Spore Creatures. Nothing catchy though, nothing that will steal a memory slot like Mario Bros. tunes.
It’s little kinks aside, Spore Creatures for Nintendo DS is a pretty fun game. Granted it’s not a game that will wow everyone, it’s a good time killer and you will easily be able to submerge yourself into the game play without growing bored or annoyed.