Why am I not winning at Spore?

I hope I am not too dumb. The new game Spore comes with almost no directions.

When I play as a herbivore, I do pretty well. As a cell, I find lots of green stuff and rapidly get to the nest (“creature”) level. I quickly get to the first sentience thing, I even find meteor bits for bonus parts. Life as a herbivore cell is good.

(The trick is to get very fast. Speed is life.)

So I cranked it up to the middle difficulty level and to carnivore. Life is not so good here. I get to the first sentience level. I gain an electric buzzer. With this I can actually hunt, the red spiky guys are suckers for an electric shock. I eat, I eat, I find mates, and I find I do not have enough DNA to buy new parts.

How do I gain DNA in the cell stage?

It seems I can never get to the creature stage for some reason. I am stalled.

Any tips?

That’s odd, I gained DNA faster as a carnivore than as an herbivore. It seems you get a DNA point for every chunk of meat you eat, while in herbivore it’s not quite a 1 to 1 ratio of food to points. I also had issues as an herbivore where I couldn’t find plants and when I did, they were already being eaten. As a carnivore cell, it’s pretty easy to find animals to eat. I’ve only played on medium.

I think the most important thing to get first with your points is an extra cilia (cilium?) to increase your speed, you can catch more animals and you can do damage with your mouth, a spike is not necessary to be a predator. The electrical shock things seems pretty useless to me, I usually skip it. Unlike nest mode, position of parts does make a difference in cell mode - bite things where they don’t have spikes.

Just to rule out the obvious: Killing a cell doesn’t necessarily mean you automatically eat it. If the cell is the about the same size as or bigger than you, then killing it means it will break up into two or three meat particles. You must eat these tasty meats to actually gain DNA points.

Yep, I zap a red thorny thing. It wiggles a bit and then dies. Then I eat the bits. Lots of them. Nothing much happens in the DNA department.

I think the electric thingee is more a defensive weapon than an offensive one. I find that I often can’t eat the cells I zap, but ramming cells to death with a spike or my mouth results in plenty of meaty goodness.

I can easily beat the cell stage as a carnivore on Hard level by spending all my DNA on speed parts and ramming other cells with my mouth. Occasionally I’ll add a couple of spikes to help with the killing, but I rarely add anything else.

You asked how to get DNA in the cell stage (as a carnivore). Just to clarify, are you saying you’re not getting any DNA?


I skipped the joybuzzer and equipped the poison, one on either side. When a larger creature would start tailing me, there’d be a large swath of poison coming out and would fairly quickly take out the cells trailing me, allowing me to eat them and rack up the DNA points

Ah, playing Spore. From what I hear, the problem is… you’re playing Spore. That’s why you’re not winning. :smiley:

Yep, I certainly got some to gain my joy-buzzer (and water jets, and poison) but now I get zero additional DNA. (I wonder if I missed the prompt to go to land? Maybe I have to smash the little button in the corner. Let me fire it up and see.)

That was it. I seem to have finished the cell phase, but did not smack the button for advancing to creature stage.

That may be it. There’s a maximum DNA level you can hit in the cell stage.

Do you see a progress bar still, or is it smoothly pointing you to the stage advance button in the lower right?

The PC Gamer review of Spore said it best - if you think about it like a strategy game or any other goal-oriented game you are probably doing it wrong.

The reason there are so few directions is because Spore is about the experience - the reviewer makes the point that Lincoln logs and Barbie dolls don’t come with instructions (toys could be different in actual article). Take the tools given to you and have fun - build that crazy creature, or building, or spaceship and see how it works.

I’ve had a lot more fun with Spore once I adopted the sandbox attitude rather than the strategy game attitude.