Spore is a multi-genre single-player god game developed by Maxis and designed by Will Wright. The game was released for the Microsoft Windows and Macintosh operating systems in September 2008 as Spore. Spore is also available for direct download from EA games. A special edition of the game, Spore: Galactic Edition, additionally includes a Making of Spore DVD video, How to Build a Better Being DVD video by National Geographic Channel, The Art of Spore hardback mini-book, a fold-out Spore poster and a 100-page Galactic Handbook published by Prima Games. As part of its license, Electronic Arts released Spore Origins, an arcade-style game for mobile devices, and Spore Creatures, a light RPG for the Nintendo DS. Spore Galactic Adventures, an expansion pack for the PC game, Spore Hero and Spore Hero Arena for Wii and Nintendo DS respectively, is in the fall 2009 lineup, and Spore Creature Keeper have been announced as part of the 2009 lineup.
Covering many genres including action, real-time strategy, and RPG, Spore allows a player to control the development of a species from its beginnings as a microscopic organism, through development as an intelligent and social creature, to interstellar exploration as a space faring culture. It has drawn wide attention for its massive scope, and its use of open-ended gameplay and procedural generation. Throughout each stage, players are able to use various creators to produce content for their games. These can then be uploaded to the online Sporepedia and downloaded by other players.
Spore was released after several delays to generally favorable reviews. Praise was leveled at the various creators which allowed players to create practically any creature, vehicle and building. However, Spore was criticized for its gameplay which was seen as shallow by many reviewers; Gamespot remarked: “Individual gameplay elements are extremely simple.” Controversy surrounded Spore for its DRM because various aspects of it were not disclosed to the player.