Exclusive: Spore Heading to Consoles

Scale of massive project emerges

Posted by Staff
Speaking exclusively to SPOnG, Sims creator and quiet legend Will Wright has pointed towards Nintendo's Wii console as a likely host for his upcoming mega-game Spore, with the unique controller giving the famed developer an inspirational shot in the arm.

"We’re looking at all the platforms for Spore, because we’re thinking about Spore as a franchise, not as a PC game. We’re going to do the PC game first, but really, what we’re trying to launch is an entire franchise that will be all across platforms," Wright told us when we caught up with him in San Francisco recently.

"It will probably take very different forms depending on the platforms. We might even pull out parts of the game – so you might be playing part of the game on a handheld platform, you might be playing the entire game but maybe more avatar-based on a console. The consoles are getting kind of different now – I think there’s a really interesting distinction between the Wii and the Xbox 360 and PS3. Something like the Wii offers a lot of interesting creative opportunities for the editors, with the controller."

Wright continues, "That’s been one of the ongoing problems with consoles: they don’t have a mouse. The mouse is a very good random-access device for putting on the screen; a console controller really makes you want the game avatar-based, so you move on character – that’s why RTS games suck on consoles. With Spore, about half the game is avatar-based already – the creature game and the space game – and it would be pretty easy for us to make the intermediate levels avatar-based, so from the beginning, we thought about how we could move Spore to platforms including consoles."

Stay tuned for our full, no-questions barred (except the one about the release date) interview with Wright in the coming days, only on SPOnG, where you'll learn about the possibility of Spore on handheld gaming platforms and a huge amount more on what is without question one of the most interesting and innovative videogames in development right now.

Believe us, there's a lot more to come.

People:
Games:

Comments

thane_jaw 2 Aug 2006 09:37
1/8
Well there was already the precedent with the Sims being ported to every platform going, so it wasn't too much of a stretch to see this coming. Nice exclusive though.

I disagree with his remarks that RTS games inherently suck due to the control interface. The main problem with porting mouse based games is that they don't attempt to rejig the control scheme to better suit the console, they just try and shoehorn it into place. EA managed to remap their control scheme with Battle for Middle-Earth 2 fairly successfully, it isn't perfect but a vast improvement over earlier attempts. Perhaps EA could throw a couple of that Dev team over to Wright's to show him how they did it and then we can see the "true" game on consoles, instead of just a watered down version.
DoctorDee 2 Aug 2006 10:03
2/8
thane_jaw wrote:
Well there was already the precedent with the Sims being ported to every platform going, so it wasn't too much of a stretch to see this coming.


The idea of a game being on every platform predates the Sims somewhat. Lemming and James Pond were both on every available platform... over 15 each.

And the game style of the Sims makes it feasible on most platforms, you could even do it on the old Amiga.

But I think the news here is that (maybe) people didn't expect Spore to make it to the consoles.

more comments below our sponsor's message
king skins 2 Aug 2006 10:53
3/8
I don't know why but I thought spore was coming out on the 360 & PS3... not sure where I got that idea from.

But is having a mouse that much of an issue anymore? The 360 and PS2 both have USB ports on them that a mouse could be plugged into if it was needed. And most people should have a USB mouse (if not a wireless) one hanging about someplace and there not that expensive.
thane_jaw 2 Aug 2006 11:01
4/8

Well the 360 has keyboard support and supposedly can support the mouse, although MS won't officially support it (the mouse that is) and discourage developers from using it because it would create a 2-tier system. I'm not sure where I heard that from, probably either Gaming Steve or Major Nelson, so certainly that could be an option to control it.

DoctorDee, it just seemed really obvious this is what EA would do - especially given the success of the sims and the multi formatedness of that franchise and the fact that Spore has such a huge buzz about it.

Personally if there was some way of fitting it down onto the DS I'd love that, although it would probably be nerfed completely.

LUPOS 2 Aug 2006 14:15
5/8
thane_jaw wrote:
Personally if there was some way of fitting it down onto the DS I'd love that, although it would probably be nerfed completely.



this really got me thinking... im relatively sure a good rendition of the game could be done on the DS. graphics wise the game isnt astounding. Its certainly pretty and the transitions from the surface of the world out to galaxy travel is impressive but the models them selves arent incredibly complicated. The only real issue is fitting the size of the game on a tiny ds cart. While most of it is generated there still has to be a ton of textures and things and i imagine a game save (that involves tons of planets) to be rather large. I think if they use the GBA slot as added ram/storage (liek the ds browser) then they could pull of a pretty faithfull version, downloaded content and all.

To heck with getting all the bones in the museum in AC... i want to take over the universe on my ride to work ;)

__________
realvictory 3 Aug 2006 00:22
6/8
I think it serves them right for just following the trend, rather than creating controllers that are actually good.

On the other hand, it serves them right for trying to turn a "game" into a "franchise".

Also, if they remove features, they'd better add extra features to compensate, or it will just be a s**t port. But if that happens, why not just make completely different games?

If you can do stuff such as play different aspects of the same game on DS and Wii, that would be best - like Microsoft talked about last E3. Because you can't call it the same game, when it's actually different games.

RiseFromYourGrave 3 Aug 2006 00:53
7/8
it would be brilliant to see a spore game for the ds, but it would probably have to be redesigned - maybe quite drastically - to suit the ds's pros and cons and theres plenty of room for a f**k up or two there.

just because a lot of love and creative enthusiasm has obviously gone into spore thus far, whoever is in charge of porting it or payrolling the port might not be as interested in making the best possible game

as for the practicalities, surely with the amount of information on the animal crossing cart as an example they could do it without needing extra storage. maybe an even larger capacity ds cart but not gba slot memory.

im sure nintendo wont be prepared to make a memory cart for the gba slot a standard for future ds games anyway, which is what would probably happen if spore or any other game was given the go ahead to do so.
thane_jaw 3 Aug 2006 09:05
8/8
RiseFromYourGrave wrote:


im sure nintendo wont be prepared to make a memory cart for the gba slot a standard for future ds games anyway, which is what would probably happen if spore or any other game was given the go ahead to do so.


Yeah it'd completely ruin the DS lite's design if you had to carry round a bloody plugin just to play your games.

What would be cool would be for a Wii launch with the option of downloading the editor/s to the DS which you could take with you during the day and upload again in the evening. That would rockity rock, but alas is just wishful thinking.
Posting of new comments is now locked for this page.