News Archive - June 2006
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Apologies for the lack of updates recently, but we'll be catching up with all the (post) E3 news asap. During the E3 last month, Robin Williams was invited to play Spore at the Wired Mag party. Three sites have covered the happening. The first is Kotaku, which has published some of the one-liners made by Williams during the creation of his alien, as well as another short article about the event. CNet has published a somewhat longer article covering the happening. It tells how Williams created the creature and played with the creature editor for a while, also quoting a few of his one-liners made during the presentation.
More interesting to most people is probably the video posted by Joystiq though. They've visited the party and made some footage of the entire presentation, and got interviews with both Will Wright and Robin Williams as well. All the footage, 40 minutes in total, is in the video. You can download it completely at once, or in several chapters. The full video is 420Mb big.
Many people have taken a look at Spore during the E3 2006, and as a result there are many previews of the game all over the net. Covering them all separately like we did for some of the bigger gaming sites would cost a lot of time and space, hence there's merely a list of links to previews here, in random order. Most of them also contain pictures. There are also a few links to Asian sites, mainly for the pictures they have. Here goes:
- 4Gamer.net (1)
- 4Gamer.net (2)
- Watch.Impress (1)
- Watch.Impress (2)
- Total Video Games
- Joystiq (1)
- Joystiq (2)
- Computer and Videogames
- Opposable Thumbs
Furthermore there are also two videos posted on Google Video, uploaded by HydromancerX from the GamingSteve forums. You can find the videos here and here. Enjoy all the material. Thanks to SimsZone and SnootySpore for the links.
Just like last year Spore got nominated for several E3 awards - both the official ones as well as those from many gaming sites. Over at GameSpot Spore became a finalist for Best Strategy Game, Best PC Game and Game of the Show, but won none of those editors' choice awards. GameSpy has also been giving away awards, with Spore coming second on Best PC Game and it won the Most Innovative Game award. Next is IGN, on which the game won the awards for Technical Excellence and PC Game of the Show, as well as being a runner-up for Most Innovative Design (on the same page as Techincal Excellence) and the general Best of Show awards. Finally there's 1Up, which has all their awards on a single page. Wright's game has won Best PC Game, Best Simulation Game and Best of Show awards.
Then for the E3 Awards, Spore got nominated in the same four categories as last year: Best of Show, Best Original Game, Best PC Game and Best Simulation Game. Although the game won all four awards last year, this year it had to give the Best of Show one to Nintendo's Wii. That leaves the other three nominations, which Spore also won. You can read about all the Game Critics Awards winners on their website.
That Spore is revolutionary in the gaming industry, is hardly any news at all. The way the game works, as well as the way it's being developed, is different from anything that's been seen before. During the E3, Business Week Online published a slideshow about Spore. Eight experts give their predictions on how Spore can change the gaming industry in economic, educational, legal, and other ways. The game might help in discovering new game developers, saving development costs for games, teaching students about programming, marketing products, or helping us understand more about the world around us. It can also be used as a design tool or tool to make non-Spore content like movies and such. Check out the full slideshow for all the things the experts have to say. Click the images at the bottom, or the arrows at the right-top, to scroll through the 9 pages.
Recently the Wall Street Journal published an article about Will Wright and his games. Although it's a lot about the history of Maxis and games like The Sims, Spore is also briefly mentioned as being the biggest game launch of 2007 for EA. The article also tells about how Maxis was founded and how SimCity was born, as well as the skepticism people at Maxis had about the Sims. It also says Spore may be Will's last big game, probably because of the "grueling length" it takes to develop a game, according to Will's wife Joell Jones. Other than that, the text is also a bit about Will Wright's hobbies, like robots. You can read the full article for more details.
The Dutch gaming magazine Power Unlimited has published an interview with Will Wright on their website. In the interview Will comments on a few things about Spore. For example, you can stay in any stage of the game as long as you wish. Will also says that EA has put enough trust in him to let him pursue his creative ideas. He also talks about EA aiming to develop more original games rather than using licenses. The interview is not very long, but does give some insight into what EA is currently doing, as well as the development of Spore so far. Read the entire interview to get the details.
Well after the Game Developers Conference a couple of months ago, website Gamasutra has posted a podcast about Spore. Caryl Shaw, producer for the game, talks about pollinated content, and building a community around it. The communities around SimCity and the Sims 2 have taught Maxis a lot about building a community around a game. The game has to appeal to several types of gamers, those who prefer making content, and those who are more likely to download it. The recording is basically the presentation Shaw gave during the GDC, of which the Powerpoint Presentation is also available. Get the podcast from GDC Radio to hear the entire presentation.