Edge writes: "Towards the end of our time at Maxis, we find ourselves talking with the studio's founder, Will Wright, about his love of Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey. Spore, Wright says, is a game partly inspired by the magnitude and subject of that earlier project – the player's actions scaling from survival in a rockpool to galactic conquest just as Kubrick's camera continuously refocuses to capture the ascent of life, from mindless beast, through sentience, tool use and high technology, onwards to infinity.
Just as Spore's biological scale expands with each of its five phases, so the game gently sweeps through a gamut of increasingly complex game mechanics. Starting with a Pac-Man-like fight for survival at the cellular level, the game quickly introduces a three-dimensional landscape for your emergence on to dry land at the creature stage, before giving you increased social abilities at the tribal stage and RTS-style global domination at the civilisation stage. The final space phase is an open-ended mixture of demanding strategy game and sandbox, where the ability to shape worlds and their inhabitants is entirely placed in your hands – or claws or suckers, as the case may be."