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Spore to Ship 'When It's Done' And Not Before 135

Posted by Zonk
from the sometime-before-i-am-fifty-please dept.
Citing the sheer potential of the title, EA executives John Riccitiello and Frank Gibeau stated in a conference call yesterday that Spore will not ship until it is finished. Next Generation reports: "'It's one of those breakthrough products that might come across the industry every three, five, seven years ... We could not be more bullish for the potential of the franchise as we are right now,' said Riccitiello. He said that he still expects the game to ship in the 'March, April, May' 2008 timeframe. However, Riccitiello said, 'We will make the choice of shipping a better game than an on-time game given the high potential for this franchise.'"
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Spore to Ship 'When It's Done' And Not Before

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  • by spun (1352) <`moc.oohay' `ta' `yranoituloverevol'> on Thursday August 02, 2007 @11:57AM (#20088327) Journal
    "Spore will ship when it is actually fun to play, instead of feeling like a session of tweaking a very complicated spreadsheet."
    • Re:Translation: (Score:5, Insightful)

      by the dark hero (971268) <adriatic_hero@ho ... il.com minus bsd> on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:30PM (#20089015) Homepage

      "Spore will ship when it is actually fun to play, instead of feeling like a session of tweaking a very complicated spreadsheet."
      Then, why is Eve Online successful?
      • by CokoBWare (584686)
        Because people with no lives play it?
      • by WilliamSChips (793741) <full@infinity.gmail@com> on Thursday August 02, 2007 @02:49PM (#20091631) Journal
        Because EVE's target demographic is the people who like tweaking spreadsheets in such a way that it fucks people over.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by ben0207 (845105)
          My accountant?
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Maserati (8679)
          I run into a lot of people in EVE who play... aggressively let's call it... on the market. The obvious example is the obvious and powerful T2 cartels that monopolized the best equipment and kept prices high. The best ships, the best cloaking fields, the best weapons, all under the control of a small group. Some items were simply available only to those in the cartel and their friends. That's been broken up by the new Invention system, but they still control a lot of the T2 production facilities.

          Besides gett
          • I usually buy out the inventory of anyone undercutting my prices.
            Fine, try that with my stuff someday. I'll notice a market that will accept lots of goods and produce more ;-)

            Of course, I try to find markets that have been neglected by the suppliers in the first place. That's where the best profits are. So it might take a while until we run into each other as competition...
      • Re:War & Trade (Score:3, Interesting)

        by DaftShadow (548731)
        I'd like to get back into Eve-O again when I find the time. In no other game have I truly learned the power of leadership on such a visceral level. Even working with just 2 other guys requires someone to step up and take their leadership skills to a whole other level. Ten & higher puts you in a whole other league of understanding. 50+ it gets even wilder. Training and processes, reconnaissance, pre-combat calculations and planning, combat orders, Feints and parries, laying traps, avoiding traps, tr
        • i meant my original statement as a joke. i've done my share of space marauding! we're looking into upsizing our corporation and setting up shop in 0.0 space. high stakes. high rewards.
        • by ultranova (717540)

          Anyone who plays eve-o and has stayed in Empire thus far, get your jump clones up to date, hop into a non-implanted one, trick out a cheap rifter or a stabber and go start shooting at people in 0.0. Start teaming up with people, and take recon positions whenever possible. Then try leading small ops. Within a month you'll be having so much fun that the 'spreadsheet life' of Empire will make you feel like a fool for ever enjoying it ;)

          Are you saying that because you believe it, or because you're trying to

      • by drsquare (530038)
        It's not, it has very few players compared to fun MMORPGs.
    • Spore will ship when it will look complete enough to sell for a bunch of money. We can then release expansion packs and "item" packs every three months which introduce all new bugs on top of the original flaws that we never bothered to patch.
    • Awwww. When I first saw "Spore to Ship..." I was thinking the endgame now involved evolving your planetary ecosystem into a giant interstellar spacecraft. (Sort of like the ships in Octavia Butler's Xenogenesis books.)
  • Coming soon (Score:5, Funny)

    by Nf1nk (443791) <`nf1nk' `at' `yahoo.com'> on Thursday August 02, 2007 @11:57AM (#20088329) Homepage
    Coming soon the Duke Nukem forever and Spore Double Pack
  • by Fyz (581804)
    I wonder where I've heard this here "We'll ship it when it's finished" rhetoric before?

    • Here are a few (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Moraelin (679338) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:04PM (#20088487) Journal

      I wonder where I've heard this here "We'll ship it when it's finished" rhetoric before?


      For example, from Epic, Blizzard, and a few others who are now the big names of the industry for it. It turns out that, surprise, more people buy a game which is finished and polished than something shoved out the door to meet an arbitrary deadline. Much as a couple of publishers still hope that if they believe the opposite really, really hard, it will somehow become reality.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by EggyToast (858951)
        Exactly. People like games that are on time. What they hate about games that are pushed back is that arbitrary deadline in the first place. If your game is probably NOT going to be ready in a year's time, DON'T say it is!

        But yeah, the only thing worse than a moving deadline are patches and bugs. And last 1/3 of a game that's just tacked on and unfinished.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Blakey Rat (99501)
        Raven Software makes pretty good games, and they always seem to come out exactly on time.

        I think the problem is that most of the game industry is terrible at project management. They set unrealistic timelines, or far too many features, or both. And then when it's obvious they can't complete the game in time, they wait until the very last minute to say anything about it.

        For instance, look at how Valve screwed ATI with ATI's Half-Life 2 giveaway. By the time HL2 actually came out, the Radeon 9600 you bought t
        • by edwdig (47888)
          I think the problem is that most of the game industry is terrible at project management. They set unrealistic timelines, or far too many features, or both. And then when it's obvious they can't complete the game in time, they wait until the very last minute to say anything about it.

          Most of the industry meets their schedules. It's mostly only the blockbuster titles that have issues, specifically because they're trying really hard to push the limits of what's been done before.

          Smaller studios don't survive lon
          • Most of the industry meets their schedules

            White _technically_ it may be true, it's IMHO a highly mis-leading statement. About 90% of the devs don't "meet the deadline" in that the game is anywhere _near_ finished, tested and balanced. They "meet the deadline" only in that the publisher forces them to shovel it out the door at that date, ready or not. Usually the latter.

            Plus, "meeting the deadline" is already stretching the term a bit, when the average game will need major debugging and rebalancing for the n

            • by edwdig (47888)
              White _technically_ it may be true, it's IMHO a highly mis-leading statement. About 90% of the devs don't "meet the deadline" in that the game is anywhere _near_ finished, tested and balanced. They "meet the deadline" only in that the publisher forces them to shovel it out the door at that date, ready or not. Usually the latter.

              Publishers are constantly pushing the limits on development schedules (and correspondingly, the budget). That's usually the publisher's fault, not the developer.

              Plus, "meeting the d
              • by Blakey Rat (99501) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @06:13PM (#20094757)
                PC gamers are an interesting group. They're willing to spend a lot on their hobby and don't seem to expect a lot of quality in return. I can't explain why they put up with it.

                Amen.

                A friend recently hassled me into picking up Battlefield: 2142 for my PC, and I've never had a worse gaming experience:

                - The user registration was a pain in the butt, since almost every nickname imaginable is already taken and it doesn't give suggestions for unused ones. (It also doesn't accept some for random stupid reasons; I couldn't use "18 Rabbit" because you can't start a nickname with a numeral. Of course it doesn't TELL you you can't use a numeral, you have to get the retards at EA customer service to say it.)

                - Trying to get my nickname changed through EA's customer service site is like pulling teeth. I had to make 7 requests, saying the same thing over and over, before an agent that knew what the hell he was doing actually replied with something helpful. It's still not resolved, because it's impossible to pick a new unused nickname without creating a new account using their retarded account system.

                - It won't run on my widescreen monitor, instead just setting it to 1024x768 like a moron. When you put in a customer service ticket for this, they reply that the game was not tested on widescreen monitors. WTF?! The game came out in 2006, when widescreen monitors have never been more popular.

                - You have to give it admin access and "allow" it on the firewall, because it also wasn't tested on Windows Vista, thus opening up security holes in your system as you're running an internet capable app with no protections whatsoever against malware.

                - Even when you do that, PunkBuster will still randomly kick you from games, because apparently PunkBuster *also* wasn't tested in Vista. (How long has Vista been in public betas? All of 2006, for sure. Why the hell hasn't anybody tested in it?!)

                - The buddy list in the game works maybe half the time. Maybe. It's hard to say because occasionally it'll work with one person I know, and show the rest as offline (even when they aren't, and even when I'm playing on the same server they're on.) Or, even worse, it won't show them as online OR offline, they just don't show up at all.

                - Trying to outfit your character is extremely annoying, as the outfit tab will randomly change to the "pick a team" tab... even when you're in the middle of a drag-and-drop operation!

                - Oh, and to cap things off, there's no auto-updater: You have to actually go to the website to find updates, and manually install them. Tribes had an auto-updater over a decade ago, what the hell is so hard about it?

                - (Not specifically about this game, but all PC games): Why do I need a serial number AND the CD in the drive to play? Why can't I just have the disk in the drive like on Xbox, or Playstation 3, or Wii, or any other gaming system? Hell, games for consoles are more expensive, if anything they should have more copy protection.

                It really, really made me miss Xbox Live. I really hope Microsoft's Games for Windows initiative catches on to save us from this stupidity.
                • by Xiph (723935)
                  Your real problem is that you're a gamer and you run Vista.

                  Vista isn't ready for gaming, even though Microsoft has been touting it as the next big kick in graphics, they haven't kept up with the rest of the things that make a gaming session. This is one of the reasons, a lot of people call vista an unfinished product.

                  Next is, get a proper I.M. client then you won't ever mess with buddy-lists ingame again.

                  Last, Vista's only two remaining features from the original design are the new user interface (very nice
                  • by Blakey Rat (99501)
                    Vista isn't ready for gaming, even though Microsoft has been touting it as the next big kick in graphics, they haven't kept up with the rest of the things that make a gaming session. This is one of the reasons, a lot of people call vista an unfinished product.

                    I would understand completely if this was a game from pre-2006, but when the game is released while Vista has open betas all over the place, than it's simply criminal for games companies to NOT test on Vista. That should be apparently to everyone. I fi
                • Steam and windows XP. All the OS issues are because vista is legendarily crap at compatibility/stability. As a gamer with a widescreen monitor I do lament the apparent lack of support but there's just not that much of a crossover and most games do work. All your issues with serials/copy protection go away with steam (though you can't resell the games there).
                  • by Blakey Rat (99501)
                    All the OS issues are because vista is legendarily crap at compatibility/stability.

                    Uh, no. Running an Internet-enabled video game with Administrator access is a terrible idea regardless of what OS you're running. (Yes, even Mac OS X.) It's not Microsoft's fault that this game requires administrator access.

                    BTW, this is one of those areas where compatibility and stability are mutually-exclusive: Microsoft *shouldn't* support moronic software, like video games that require admin access, because they are huge t
                    • Uh, no. Running an Internet-enabled video game with Administrator access is a terrible idea regardless of what OS you're running. (Yes, even Mac OS X.) It's not Microsoft's fault that this game requires administrator access.

                      I'd just like to point out the irony of running a closed-source OS then complaining about untrusted code run as administrator. Pragmatically, there's also the lack of proof of concept attacks via games in this way.
                    • by Blakey Rat (99501)
                      I'd just like to point out the irony of running a closed-source OS then complaining about untrusted code run as administrator.

                      I see no irony... even if my OS was open source, it's not like I have time to read and understand every line of code, so as far as I'm concerned open source and closed source is the same level of "untrusted." In any case, I trust Microsoft a hell of a lot more than I trust some random games developer who can't even put out a product without a monumental number of bugs.

                      Pragmatically,
                    • It's not that we relish them, it's just that if we have a choice between getting hot and bothered about the way things "should" be, or playing the damn game, we play.
                    • by Blakey Rat (99501)
                      It's hard to play when the game requires PunkBuster, and PunkBuster boots you from servers every 10 minutes for no reason whatsoever.

                      I understand your point of view, but when you put in a Xbox 360 game, you can be "playing the damn game" a hell of a lot quicker with a lot less annoyance.
      • Mark Rein at Epic doesn't say "when it's done", he says "in two weeks" when he really means "when it's done".
      • by nuzak (959558)
        Except Epic and Blizzard actually ship. Maxis normally does, but this is now year 7. This is not an arbitrary deadline -- that deadline has passed. It's now officially late, and we're tired of hearing how great it's going to be, because it still doesn't actually exist except as demos.

        But soon, the frustration will pass, and it will join DNF in the "Vaporware That Wouldn't Die" list of running jokes. It's better for your customers to be angry at you than laugh at you.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Scotland Tom (974094)
          I'm not sure where you get "year 7." Spore was only publicly announced at E3 2005. Counting the amount of time Will Wright has spent privately developing the idea before that is ridiculous. I'm sure there are many other developers that have been going through a similar multi-year pre-production process on games that we know nothing about.

          So, let's quit exaggerating things and call it at the 2 years and 3 months that it's actually been.
      • by toad3k (882007)
        The perception problem is not because of the lack of a release date. It is because they announced the game years ago and still haven't delivered.

        Blizzard did that once with starcraft and diablo and people bitched and whined and complained the whole time. They settled on keeping games a complete secret until they were within a year of release. Look at starcraft 2, the game was actually playable before anyone had even heard of it. This way they get the hype at the most appropriate time without giving it t
      • by pthor1231 (885423)
        Except, in the case of Blizzard, they still do ship games with flaws and bugs in them. People just gobble the shit up because there isn't something else coming along that is better right now.
      • Or Nintendo. If you've played through Twilight Princess, I'm sure you've noticed that the second half of the game, as fantastic as it is, is a bit disappointing after the first. I assume this is because they had so much time to work on the beginning, after the game was pushed back so many times, and that they didn't have as much liberty with the second half.
    • Something wonderful, yet notoriously late/slow... So, it should be great when it comes out, but don't hold your breath.
    • by Kelbear (870538)
      Nintendo? They're pretty adamant about releasing only when done.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by sdaemon (25357)
      Valve/Vivendi delayed on Half-Life 2, citing this same reason as well as the alleged hacking and source-code-stealing incident (did that ever get prosecuted?).

      Frankly, I'm glad they waited. When Half-Life 2 arrived...it was *perfect*.

      Like a good video game junkie, I lost about 48h of my life in one fell swoop to that game, playing it through 3 times in quick succession. I do not consider those to be wasted hours.

      More companies should release products that are "finished".
      • by Buran (150348)
        And it was closed captioned! I made a point of writing to Gabe Newell (he revealed his email address in the Lost Coast demo, asking for feedback) thanking the programmers profusely for this. It makes a HUGE difference to those of us who are hard of hearing.
    • by tehwebguy (860335)
      Certainly not from Call of Duty for 360.

      They ship broken games, and don't even fix them!
    • by Minwee (522556)

      I wonder where I've heard this here "We'll ship it when it's finished" rhetoric before?

      Oh, from Artifact Entertainment [istaria.com], who shipped a lame duck called Horizons when their last surviving developer left for a higher paying job in the fast food industry. The company promptly burned down, fell over and sank into the swamp before being bought out by... well, lets be generous and say they were bought by someone else.

      We heard it again from Sigil Games [sony.com] shortly before they kicked a tech demo of Vanguard to the

  • Spore does, in fact, have the exact same official release date as Duke Nukem Forever... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duke_nukem_forever [wikipedia.org] (check the release date)
    • by rbarreira (836272)
      And according to wikipedia, Spore's development started just 3 years after DNF's. 1997 for DNF, 2000 for Spore...
  • Balancing act (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PieSquared (867490) <isosceles2006@NOSPam.gmail.com> on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:01PM (#20088413)
    Well, the delays for Spore are starting to get frustrating. On the other hand, after all these delays it better be a pretty freaking good game... which it won't be if they rush it to put an end to the delays.

    Obviously no game is ever perfect, so it is up to the developers to decide the proper balance between time spent improving the game and delays before release.

    That said, nobody wants another "Duke Nukem Forever." If you spend too much time on the whole "revolutionizing videogames" someone will take the lessons presented at all these talks Wright does and actually *finish* a game that heavily utilizes procedural generation or whatever before Spore comes out, and it won't be revolutionary anymore.
    • by acvh (120205) <geek.mscigars@com> on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:45PM (#20089329) Homepage
      nobody wants another "Duke Nukem Forever."

      hell, I must have missed the first one. how was it?

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Knara (9377)

      Well, the delays for Spore are starting to get frustrating. On the other hand, after all these delays it better be a pretty freaking good game... which it won't be if they rush it to put an end to the delays.
      I would suggest that if the delay for a game is actually *frustrating*, that you need to diversify your hobbies a little bit.
    • by Carnildo (712617)
      Spore's got an advantage over DNF: it doesn't require kick-ass graphics. If the pretty pictures look a year or three out of date, it's no big deal.
  • Not everyone likes it, but it is good for Apple. Just keep it under wraps. Let a few trickle leaks out that don't really tell you anything other then. . . a name (maybe) and that it will be way cool!

    This works 2 fold. When it ships it catches all the competition and customers by storm, and if it doesn't ship, at least all the leaks created company hype.
    • by llevity (776014)
      I actually like this method. Why the hell even tell us about it when it's still 3 years out? I guess it's all hype and marketing, but it just tends to breed disappointment. People mentally embellish on the features that are described, then when it finally does come out, it doesn't meet their expectations.

      This is why I typically don't even read previews for games. For one, they're almost always too optimistic. I guess this is to please the advertisers, but I've never read a preview that said "This game
  • Hypocrisy (Score:3, Interesting)

    by religious freak (1005821) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:15PM (#20088743)
    Everyone is always bitching about how many patches and bugs are in games, and now we've got someone who actually wants to build a great game and the SAME people are bitching.

    Um... hypocrisy anyone?
    • by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:17PM (#20088787) Homepage Journal
      No, Slashdotters just want it now, bug free, cheap, and feature rich. What's so wrong with that?
    • Re:Hypocrisy (Score:5, Insightful)

      by shish (588640) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:32PM (#20089051) Homepage

      Everyone is always...
      Protip: the vast majority of generalisations are horribly flawed.

      the SAME people are bitching
      Can you provide a list of usernames? I would think it far more likely that person A is bitching about one thing, and person B is bitching about another -- just because persons A and B visit the same website does not make them hypocrites for saying different things...
      • by Aladrin (926209)
        "Protip: the vast majority of generalisations are horribly flawed."

        Oh, that's gonna sting when you think about it. :D
      • Reminds me of Philosophy class.

        In the text there was a similar statement concerning generalizations. Specifically: All generalizations are false/flawed. It was noted that because this was a generalization in and of itself, it must also be false/flawed. This was used as an example of bad logic.

        However, I argued that it depended on how one defines a generalization. The statement "all generalizations are false/flawed" could just as easily be a universal truth and not a generalization. In which case the stateme
    • how do you know it's the same people?
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by shotgunsaint (968677)
        Well, I don't know how long this Anonymous Coward guy's been on here, but his account is so old he doesn't have a user ID number, and he bitches about EVERYTHING!
    • by misleb (129952)
      Um... I don't think hypocrisy means what you think it means.

    • > Everyone is always bitching about how many patches and bugs are in games,
      > and now we've got someone who actually wants to build a great game

      We are just all pessimists who believe that no matter how much that someone wants to build a great game, it will have lots of patches and bugs anyway.
  • I want to play spore. I am happy that the person in charge of creativity for spore gets to take his time, and not be rushed. I'd rather wait a few months and have them happy with it. Good for them for making the right choice. It better be a kick ass game. I think it might be...
    • Everything I've seen about Spore has only given me good vibes ... except for the fear in the back of my mind that it will be chopped up and priced out of my tax bracket if they taste the buzz. If anything I think the buzz may have grown too great for Spore - that it can't possibly live up to the expectations that people are developing.
  • Franchise? (Score:4, Funny)

    by The Orange Mage (1057436) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @12:34PM (#20089085) Homepage
    That's right. It's in the article. They refer to Spore as a franchise.

    So what, Spore 2010, with updated rosters and some tiny new feature? Repeat formula next year?
    • You bet! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ObjetDart (700355)
      You bet your ass it's a franchise!

      After the success of The Sims, you can be sure EA/Maxis is looking for every new game they release to be the start of another long and extremely lucrative series of expansion packs. I worked at Maxis a few years ago, and The Sims expansion packs were hands down the biggest profit generators across the entire company (and possibly across all of EA). I have no doubt at all they are planning for another endless expansion pack bonanza with Spore.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by 0rionx (915503)

      As you may know, EA has already confirmed that a DS version [gamespot.com] of Spore is already in the works, and they've hinted that they have plans to release the game on other consoles down the road, so technically Spore can already be considered a franchise. Furthermore, Will Wright's game have an excellent track record when it comes to longevity and replayability. SimCity came out in 1989 and remains a successful franchise property to this day. While the core concept of the gameplay has always been the same, I woul

    • by Blakey Rat (99501)
      It's an EA game. Did you just drop out of the womb, or are you actually ignorant of how EA works? They squeeze every drop out of a game engine/concept. That's how they started with the really great Battlefield: 1942, moved to the not-too-bad Battlefield 2, and are now selling the buggy POS Battlefield: 2152. Expect a medieval Battlefield game any day now.
    • Think "The Sims."

    • The franchise in question is Will himself.
    • by Fozzyuw (950608)

      So what, Spore 2010, with updated rosters and some tiny new feature? Repeat formula next year?

      • Spore: Pets Release date: 3-months after Spore is done
      • Spore: Holidays In Rome Release date: 6-months after Spore is done
      • Spore: Holidays In Paris Release date: 9-months after Spore is done
      • Spore: Red Light District Release date: 12-months after Spore is done
      • Spore: Co-ed College Party Release date: 15-months after Spore is done
      • ...

      Then there will be...

      • Spore2: Pets Release date: 3-months after Spore2 is
    • by wuie (884711)
      Of course it'll be a franchise. As soon as you've evolved your creations to where you want them to be, they'll need to have interesting things to do, which will be provided in the following expansions:

      Spore: Vacation - Let your little ones relax is exotic locations, sipping drinks on the beach!
      Spore: House Party - Invite your friend's creations to your primate's place and PAARTYYYY!
      Spore: Hot Date - Will your cephalopod-esque creature find true love, or just a one-night stand?

      And, of course, who can
  • I'd much, MUCH rather have a good, complete game than an incomplete one that has been rushed because the players are impatient. S.T.A.L.K.E.R. is a prime example of how bad things can get when corners are cut to release a game sooner.
    • And Daikatana is a prime example of how bad things can get when corners aren't cut to release a game sooner.

      But seriously, as long as they actually release the game sometime in 2008 it won't matter.
  • For those of you who just can't wait, Will Wright will be giving a Spore demo at his Stupid Fun Club studio in Berkeley on Friday, August 10th as part of a benefit party for Bill Pullman's new play. The tickets are expensive ($250), but all proceeds go to benefit the Magic Theatre. Besides Will and Bill, Apollo 9 astronaut Rusty Schweickart and Bill Nye the Science Guy are also expected to attend. The invitation says that Will will demo Spore at the party! For more info: http://www.magictheatre.org/seas [magictheatre.org]
  • When was the last time that a game shipped and it was actually done? (I'm looking at you, Halo 2 and KOTOR 2. Don't laugh, Civ IV... what patch number are you on right now?)
  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @01:17PM (#20089999)
    I mean in general I support the idea of releasing a game when it is actually complete and not at some arbitrary deadline. I am not at all a fan of getting a game that is effectively beta and having to wait for a few patches to even make it playable (like, say Ultima 9). On the other hand, this is often a sign that "when it is done" may be "never". While development is certainly something that has unexpected delays and so on, when there is no ability to provide a timetable, that's worrying. It can be indicative that there's no clear idea of what is going on or a lack of direction or a staff that lacks the ability to do what is asked of them. I mean you'd great rather nervous if you were having a house built and you asked the foreman when it'd be done and they said "When it's finished, I can't give you a timetable." You'd be worried, and rightfully so. While he can't tell you the precise day it'll be done, you should at least be able to get a ballpark figure.

    So I really hope it rules, and I hope this just means it'll be given the time it needs, but I worry this is signs that it may never actually happen.
  • I thought the title of the article was referring to the state of game development, and that they hadn't even got the space ship part done. I figured that meant Mankind would reach the stars before Spore did.
  • Spore is dead (Score:4, Insightful)

    by MobyDisk (75490) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @01:18PM (#20090033) Homepage
    Most games must be done start to finish within 2 years. If you write a game and it takes 5 years, then the game is usually obsolete by the time it comes out. The longer the development cycle, the more difficult it is to target the hardware that will be available when you ship the game. And as the code base grows in complexity it becomes harder to maintain, test, fix bugs, etc. I think too many people say "Will Wright knows what he is doing!" and conclude everything will work out. But history shows that when a game is ambitious, overhyped, and delayed multiple times -- that the odds are not good.

    I really hope Spore works out. But I think they may have become subject to high expectations and scope creep.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by fullmetal55 (698310)
      Most games yes, however now we're hitting a wall technologically. There's a point where current graphics, are good enough. look at half-life 2. it's still going strong, look at the sims. these are games that are older than 2 years and are still selling very well. Writing an ambitious game like this will take more than 2 years to work out all the bugs. there is a ton of gameplay in it. And they not only have to write all this gameplay mechanics, but playtest, re-work, fix bugs, make it fun. for mos
    • by Draconix (653959)
      Hey! Daikatana did actually come out eventually.
    • Halflife 2 took five years to develop and it was very successful.
    • The longer the development cycle, the more difficult it is to target the hardware that will be available when you ship the game.

      Having better hardware than planned for does usually not hurt.
      A drawback will be that your graphics are not as smooth as they could be on the very latest hardware generation. But on the other hand, even people with somewhat older machines will be able to run your game. If you look at WOW screenshots for instance, it seems that Blizzard did aim at running on less capable machines to

  • by El_Smack (267329) on Thursday August 02, 2007 @01:30PM (#20090243)
    A delayed game is eventually good, a bad game is bad forever. - Shigeru Miyamoto
    • by MaWeiTao (908546)

      A delayed game is eventually good, a bad game is bad forever. - Shigeru Miyamoto


      That's a nice quote, but there are some delayed games that still manage to be bad forever. Look at Daikatana.
      • by El_Smack (267329)

        A delayed game is eventually good, a bad game is bad forever. - Shigeru Miyamoto

        That's a nice quote, but there are some delayed games that still manage to be bad forever. Look at Daikatana.
        Perhaps they were not delayed enough?
  • In cases like this the case is simple.

    if the publisher is blizzard
          wait for a high quality game
    else
            the product is vapor ware

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