I’ll have to play it before I really critique it, however, the thing that I am critical off-the-bat with is the necessity for the player’s species to dominate before they can move to new stages of the game. (eg. Conquering the planet through military means.)
Wright has mentioned that Spore was, in part, inspired by Powers of 10 by Charles and Ray Eames, a peaceful exploration of the macro and micro worlds. This influence is apparent in the “evolution” phases of the game. In contrast, the “society phases” of the game seem to require, or at least encourage, non-peaceful world domination before ascending to the next level of play. This makes me think of Buckminster Fuller’s world game and how it could have influenced the game-play within Spore… or within our reality…
I am really digging some of the experimental creatures created and shared by users. It is a great mash-up of game culture meets bio-art — one could draw similarities to hacking the biology/code of our world in the way some game-art does with software/hardware. It’s also interesting to note that on YouTube, these videos say that they were uploaded with Spore.
“I didn’t save this because it didn’t have a mouth. I made another one but it doesn’t have eyes. Damn you complexity mater!”