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Customer Reviews

2.3 out of 5 stars
2.3 out of 5 stars
Price:£6.80+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime
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on 9 September 2008
Well, it was highly awaited... Finally some innovation in the world of gaming - not just another FPS with slightly better graphics and even crappier gameplay!

Then EA wanted to screw both the good developers at Maxis and their by-now-small percentage of faith-full customers... and so they did!

This game is not something you buy - it is something you rent for 3 goes and that's it! Naturally it also fills your computer with what can only be described as a full-on rootkit. So if you have been trying to avoid virusses, trojan and other backdoors in your system for years now forget about ever buying an EA game...

If only one could buy the pirate version which works without all these problems?!

So in short: Don't buy this unless you want to pay for the most expensive rental game ever made (trust me: the game itself is certainly not worth it by a longshot) and naturally for those money you also get a full-on rootkit placed in your system forever and ever!

Get lost, EA!
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on 8 September 2008
Spore is just like that itch down your trouser leg, you know it would be fun to scratch but you just can't quite locate it. So much promise was displayed while in development but unfortunately it came up short, and here's why.

You start off as a cell organism fighting for survival in a thick soup like environment; it's almost like a cross between Flow and Pacman, (Pac-man Collection (GBA)) without any consequence for dying. It's mildly entertaining but the whole affair lasts far too long and is as simple as point and clicking around the screen, repeating the same action of eating plants or other organisms for 20 odd minutes.

Spores second stage allows you to add legs and graspers to your creature as you crawl out onto dry land. You then repeat the point and click process while fighting against a sloppily implemented camera, either killing and eating species out of existence or making friends and having them join your pack.

The tribal and civilisation stages are not much better, although did hold my interest slightly longer than the two stages previous. However any veteran to RTS games will not find a challenge even on the hardest difficulty setting, as your viewpoint switches to one of a top down view. The tribal stage empowers you with commanding your creatures within a tribe like environment on your planet of choice, slowly destroying or befriending other like minded tribes. The following civilisation stage encourages you to build up a formidable empire with the main goal of conquering all other cities on the map, so your species gains domination over the entire planet.

This is in fact the basis for the entire game and quickly becomes very tiring. Each stage is akin to a mini game that you will want to finish ASAP just in the vein hope that you get to do something more interesting in the next. unfortunately I finished the entire thing in one sitting which took around 10 hours give or take, with a few breaks thrown in-between.

That's not to say Spore is all bad, quite the contrary. The numerous creators and sheer amount of objects held within could keep you happily amused for hours, and are almost games within themselves. These with your permission, can all be uploaded to the Spore servers and hosted in other peoples games. From a personal standpoint I believe if you're the sort of person blessed with an unlimited imagination and a creative side, then there is a lot to be gained from Spore. Mastering the editors and trying to create a better creature/boat/plane/tower etc each time is quite addicting. Coupled with the ability to have these displayed on your own personalised Spore page, online for everyone to peruse is quite satisfying.

Spore then, has a wealth of customisation features but falls horribly short when they come to being implemented into the beef of the game. Which is a shame, because with a little more thought and detail put into the main body could have made this an instant classic.
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on 15 October 2008
So most reviews here focus on the DRM. Sure, the DRM annoyed me as well, and made damn sure I'd never buy another EA PC game without first making sure it was DRM free, which sadly means waiting until post-launch. However there's also a bigger issue with Spore...

The DRM makes it not worth buying.
The gameplay makes it not even worth playing.

I've already been hit financially. I bought Spore, had it delivered on release day (Yay Amazon Prime!). So on the first strike, too late for me. However, I don't play Spore.

Why? The cell stage is fun. The creature stage starts out fun too. However, in order to do well it's a game of "upgrade your parts", not "find a cool way to evolve".

Multiple legs? Same speed. That all depends on the foot you attach. Multiple mouths? Same bite, depending which jaw you choose. It's a game that only really works if you min-max, which then leads to a lack of variety.

I'd recommend you ignore this game EVEN if you are willing to be screwed by invasive DRM.
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on 10 September 2008
It is hard to believe that this was produced by the same people who brought us SimCity. The problem with Spore is not just that its a rubbish game (tedious, repetitive, boring, shallow, and undeveloped are a few words that come to mind); its that it is representative of the disdain with which companies like Electronic Arts hold their customers.

If you're thinking of buying this, consider that:

1. You can only activate this product 3 times. If you want to do so more than that, you need to call EA - and EXPLAIN why you need that extra activation. So however much you pay for this, you'll never own it in the way you owned games in the past, with the liberty to install as and when and however many times you like.

2. A large amount of the features associated with Spore have been removed, including an ENTIRE level (the underwater level). This is NOT the game featured on the famous demo that did the rounds on various internet video sites. This is a pale imitation of that. Furthermore, witness the fleet of Sims 2 'expansions' that have poured into the market in the wake of that game. The same will probably happen here - meaning that if you want to enjoy the experience as is shown in the various videos doing the rounds on the internet, be prepared to fork out a few more fat wads of cash.

3. What is left is essentially five cutesy mini-games stuck together. There is no sense of progression (what you do in one level has little effect on the next) or depth (most of the customisation is only for aesthetic appeal). The final level, Space, is massive, but has atrocious gameplay.

Avoid buying this. Send these massive publishers a message. Maybe next time they'll sell us a complete game.
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on 12 October 2008
I have no idea about this DRM stuff, but this is a really simple, childish, tedious game. I agree with previous comments that the first stage is the most fun (ten whole minutes of fun). Beyond this there is a heavy reliance on customising creature appearance, most of which makes no difference whatsoever to the gameplay. It is billed as a game where you can create realistic creatures, yet entire strategies are based on singing and dancing to other creatures. Seriously, I've play spin-off games from animated films which were more engaging. If this was freeware I'd play it once, complete it and then uninstall it. Oh, wait, that's what I did.

On another note, a lot of the positive reviews on amazon are a bit suspect and borrow heavily from EA publicity material. It's still impressive that this game has one and a half stars.
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on 8 September 2008
Well ive been looking forward to this since It was announced, thinking this would be the next BIG THING...But it turned out to be..just ok.
The phases are entertaining, but you can get through them so quickly! Space stage is the only stage that seems to have replay value, and even that gets boring. Its sort of, set up a trade route, colonise a planet, make money...Do it again, and again....
Missions for the space phase are basically lumped into *Scan this, kill this or abduct this* and that's it.
Pretty dissapointed over all. Yes its groundbreaking in alot of ways, and i hope Will builds on that in the next game, but the play value is just too shallow for me.
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on 9 September 2008
Having looked forward to this game since I heard about it 2 years ago, I finally got to play through it.

I am extremely disappointed.

It plays like a few poor mini games threaded together. Suitable for the 3-7 age bracket, owing mainly to the cutesy graphics, but otherwise a shallow, unsatisfying experience.

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on 8 September 2008
Funny, I cancelled my order for this months ago and yet sent me it anyway, so I decided to give it a go and all I can say is it is the Sims all over again.

Let me explain, remember the only fun thing about the sims? Building the house right? Well the same goes here except this time it's a creature and the core gameplay is just a load of grind and boredom.
It really crushes your creativity as well seeing as body parts have different stats so you'll always choose the best performing parts and end up with same looking creatures over and over - seems the game could of done with some actual playtesting first. And dont get me started with the "RTS" sections of the game, it couldnt be more clunky if they tried.

This game would of been acceptable 10 years ago, but if your new to gaming perhaps you should give it a shot and see how a game isn't suppose to be made.

My copy was sent back today so I can now use the money better elsewhere.
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on 23 September 2008
While the game itself is fun for the first few hours, it's the DRM that has effectively given me an expensive mug coaster.

What the instruction manual doesn't tell you (in fact it states the complete opposite, which EA claim is a 'typo' that they'll fix in later editions), is that using it on different screen names on your PC costs 'activations'.

I installed it first on our PC, under my screen name, then my fiance decided he wanted a go on his. There goes 2 activations. Not that you get informed of it...

Then we installed it on our laptop to take it with us to visit relatives at the weekend. Installed fine, but trying to use it on the second screen name brings up a warning that we've used up all of our activations. No chance of playing it on my mums PC while I'm away then.

Nice. I payed for the game, we have the right to use it, but my fiance can't play it on the laptop on his screen name.

Although we did find out after installing it that you get a little piece of DRM installed along with it called SecuRom. A quick Google search reveals that previous versions of the program installed with other games has made XP prone to crashing, while SecuRom in general can conflict with firewalls and other programs.

The only way to delete it involves editing the registry, which is not advised unless you really know what you're doing.

I remember when Sony did something along these lines with their CDs a few years back. After getting their wrists thoroughly slapped they stopped using it, and recalled the CDs offering exchanges to customers.

Hopefully EA will see sense like this before they push away more customers.

What happens now when we upgrade our PC next year? I can't install it on there, and will have to either buy a new game or keep our current PC just on the off chance I want to play Spore again.
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on 11 September 2008
If you liked playing around with the Building Editor in Sim City then you'll like Spore. The main attraction of the Game are the Editors - Buildings, Cars, Boats, Spaceships, Creatures, your imagination is pretty much the limit.

However, i've found the Gameplay to be quite shallow. The various Stages - Cell, Creature, Tribal etc, are quite easily and quickly completed, and are not very in-depth. The real fun of the Game comes from meeting new creatures and other content that other people have created and Uploaded to the central servers, and then downloaded to you at Game play time.

However, that brings me to the biggest problem so far.... Online play and DRM.

The Game works best when connected Online so you can access all the great content other people have created. I've been trying for over 24 hours now to connect to EA's servers to play but they seem to have Server problems. I've received no response from EA customer support or an answer in the forums.

And to cap it all the DRM that comes with the Game, SecuRom, only allows you 3 Installs and then you have to Phone EA and Beg to be allowed to Install the Game a forth, fifth or six time. If you are like me and regularly remove and reinstall games when you get bored with them then you're going to have massive headaches with this in the future.

If i was rating the game only i'd give it a 3/5, but because of the DRM it gets a 1/5.

Summary : Bad Customer support, Overly Intrusive DRM, Shallow Game play. Great Editors.
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