Saturday, June 03, 2006

Spore Info.

(Written May 17th, 2006)

Will Wright at GDC '06 keynote speech - full speech costs money to download. Not about spore but it provides a small bit of insight to how Wright works. Overall I find him a very kindred spirit, even if he looks a little creepy. =P The "communication of interest" and "content wars" topics were especially interesting to me.

The page above mentions that Spore got the "Game Critics Award for Best of Show when the game debuted at E3 2005. Spore was also named Best Original Game, Best PC Game, and Best Simulation Game." Apparently they could have released it a year ago and it would have kicked total ass. Maybe they spent the last year on this trailer (and they didn't even bother to make new creatures). On the plus side, there's some way-cool sceenshots of possible creatures on the official site, including the vary first creature 2.5 years ago: the Debug Squid. =P The non-screen info is sparse and only useful if you never watched the Google video of spore at GDC last year.

edit: I got an e-mail advertising a free game trial (more in new topic), which coincidentally led me to this. Apparently a new high-level PvP zone in City of Heroes/Villains is an alternate dimension of the most densely-populated zone (which is only of non-social interest to brand-new characters): Atlas Park. By controlling "temporal nodes", players can retroactively claim past victories for good or evil, changing the features of the zone (i.e. whether the person holding up the globe in Atlas Plaza is the hero Atlas or the villain Lord Recluse).

another edit: I got an e-mail from Dark and Light just now. Apparently it's getting to the end of its development cycle and the big ol' establishing beta is coming to a close. I call it establishing because this is a very "open" sort of game which would be utter chaos if they went commercial with no community. although we're not talking total freedom, there's a lot involved in the craft and political systems, which definitely catches my eye. In a nutshell, there are aspects of society which players directly create; in older online games this has been merely part of the economy through loot and later crafting; now there will be (they hope) a huge amount of political conflict as well as physical and economic, using a sort of feudal hierarchy system Which roughly equates to lords, knights, and serfs (although the serfs maintain autonomy and liberty; they merely pay tax to him whose land they are using at the moment). I might have it a little wrong because I mostly skimmed the linked page and other related pages.

Those who have played class-change-heavy RPGs will have a good idea of the class system: citizen, then 4 branches (warrior/archer/healer/nuker, I forget the names), which each have 3 or 4 branches, each which themselves have 2 branches, making something like 20-30 final classes. To their credit, each final class is about as unique as they can possibly be; for example, there's one which is devoted to providing area buffs to allies, while doing some tanking. I'm disappointed though that there's no classes which specialize in mercantile or politics; they've kept them seperate so that your class is independent of what you can craft how well or what holdings you can have. Though it's a charming concept, I find it touches a little too close to reality; at some point gamers are going to admit that real life is not as much fun as games and they want some of their skill on paper as a number, instead of what they can actually do themselves.

What, you thought I was done editing? hell no. I was browsing the Penny Arcade archives. In retrospect, I now understand how Jesus got confused. Well, time for bed.

But I still haven't tried my Auto Assault free trial yet, so you know what? fuck bed. FUCK BED.


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