iPhone users can now evolve, or at least their Spore counterparts can, thanks to the release of Spore Creatures for iTunes.
Hitting the iTunes market on Monday, Electronic Arts' Spore Creatures picks up where Spore Origins left off. In that game, your baby swam around the primordial ooze trying to stay alive by eating smaller, defenseless lifeforms and avoiding bigger, more dangerous ones.
Spore Creatures pulls your creation up the evolutionary ladder and onto dry land where it faces more obstacles and challenges. After birthing and adding appendages to your creation in the Creature Creator, you release it into the world where you navigate it across the rough terrain by tilting your iPhone.
As in Spore Origins, your creature stays healthy by gobbling up the weaker lifeforms and steering clear of the tougher (and more pointy or gassy ones) ones. But as you bump into other denizens, you can choose to make friends with them or do battle. You also need to watch where you step as the terrain can trip you up with lava, quicksand, and other hazards.
Completing challenges and sometimes just surviving pushes you higher up the evolutionary scale, giving you new abilities and body parts to face new obstacles. You can also make periodic pit stops at the Creature Creator to outfit your organism with more defensive and offensive appendages and with special bio-powers to further strengthen it.
I'm a fan of the Spore games and have played others on both the iPhone and Nintendo DS. After spending a couple of hours with Spore Creatures, I enjoyed navigating the terrain and the challenge of helping my creature evolve. I did find the gameplay repetitive and a bit frustrating at times as your creature can get stuck roaming around in circles looking for food or avoiding the bad guys. But overall, Spore Creatures offers a very cool, colorful environment--one that I'll definitely be exploring further.
The $6.99 game works on both the iPhone and iPod Touch.