Spore was a game that divided fans. You either thought it was a great success and loved it, or you felt it was a failure and no fun at all. It seems that to many people, you have to fall into one of those camps. Myself, I enjoyed Spore allot, but it wasn’t without it’s flaws. One of the biggest was the boredom of the space phase. Now along comes the first true expansion, Galactic Adventures, hoping to remedy that. Does it fix space’s infinite boredom, or is it instead more tedious then before?
For one thing, this expansion doesn’t address space’s biggest issue: being called back to deal with some inane disaster every thirty seconds. You either had to let your colonies flounder so you could explore, or hover nearby to squelch any problems. Galactic Adventures doesn’t fix this, and instead adds more things that need done. These on-planet adventures aren’t well balanced to me. For example, my Budilla species is peaceful, and my captain is opting for movement enhancing captain bonuses like a hover pack and sprint booster, so when I get sent to a planet and find out that I have to kill to survive, I’m screwed. There’s occasionally a warning in the mission description, but not always. Early on, many missions can prove way to challenging for the average captain. Once you level up a few times, though, you get to see the true scope of the game.
Maxis has put together some incredibly fun scenarios to play through, from a Schoolhouse Rock-based one to a ersatz Godzilla raiding a town. I also enjoyed downloading random player made levels as well. There are some incredibly talented people out there. Me? I can’t make squat. I have neither the skill nor the patience to put together a workable adventure.
Another problem arises when you try to make your own adventure. If you’re like me and have played allot since Spore came out, you likely have thousands of critters littering your Sporepedia. This can make loading it up a chore. Galactic Adventures makes this exponentially worse by downloading a bunch of objects and critters with each new adventure.
All in all, Galactic Adventures is a fun expansion pack that has some flaws. From Sporepedia-inflation to unbalanced missions to – good God – the goofy music and dancing your captain does upon completing a mission, there are some shortcomings. However, if you enjoy Spore, or want a reason to play it again, this will satisfy you. Alphasim out.