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Spil Games developing Creatures Family!   1 | 2 | 3
Malkin

Malkin
Australia  
Manager


 visit Malkin's website: Malkin's page at CWiki
  3/9/2016  3

Spil Games developing Creatures Family!Spil Games has acquired the Creatures IP from BigBen Interactive, and is developing a free-to-play mobile game called Creatures Family, slated for release in 2017.

You can read the full press release here, and read a forum topic by Spil Games here.


My TCR Norns
 
saintrowfan2

saintrowfan2
United States  


  3/9/2016

The Hype Is Real :D
 
Lurhstaap

Lurhstaap
United States  

 visit Lurhstaap's website: Addicted To CAOS
  3/9/2016  2

I'm... not exactly holding my breath. We'll see what happens. Of course, I'd love to see it happen, like I'm sure most of us would, but it'll depend a lot on the execution. The closer it is to being an innovation on the existing games the happier I'll be, rather than a largely different "modernized" game that's much shallower but still wears the same name. I'm really afraid they'll abandon the complex genetics and engines and just make them into typical virtual pets. Which, I enjoy virtual pet games too, especially if they have a simple genetics system of some sort. But Creatures is special precisely because it went to the next step and made a real virtual biology, or did its best to do that anyway. So... we'll see.

EDIT: I -am- relieved to read it will be targeted to individuals 20 and up. Hopefully this means we'll be spared too much oversimplification.


Conclude with killer catchphrase.
(Lurhstaap)
"This is not knowledge -
this is information!"
New Model Army, "Courage"

 
Malkin

Malkin
Australia  
Manager


 visit Malkin's website: Malkin's page at CWiki
  3/9/2016

In the forum topic, they do say "And you’ll have to bear with us a little longer as our engineers get to grips with the technology behind Creatures.", so there's hope that the insides won't get chucked out.

My TCR Norns
 
BaffleBlend

BaffleBlend
United States  


  3/9/2016

This is the cynic in me speaking, but I'm going to wait until I hear more details before I get excited.

On one hand, this pretty much means Creatures Online is officially cancelled since BigBen no longer has the rights to the series, which I'm honestly glad about. Creatures Family is another chance.

On the other hand, I worry that Family will have what I didn't like about Online in the first place as well. Especially since it's mobile.

Lurhstaap wrote:
I'm... not exactly holding my breath. We'll see what happens. Of course, I'd love to see it happen, like I'm sure most of us would, but it'll depend a lot on the execution. The closer it is to being an innovation on the existing games the happier I'll be, rather than a largely different "modernized" game that's much shallower but still wears the same name. I'm really afraid they'll abandon the complex genetics and engines and just make them into typical virtual pets. Which, I enjoy virtual pet games too, especially if they have a simple genetics system of some sort. But Creatures is special precisely because it went to the next step and made a real virtual biology, or did its best to do that anyway. So... we'll see.

EDIT: I -am- relieved to read it will be targeted to individuals 20 and up. Hopefully this means we'll be spared too much oversimplification.



Unfortunately, there's precedent for that.

*shudders at the abysmal PS1 version*

 
Lurhstaap

Lurhstaap
United States  

 visit Lurhstaap's website: Addicted To CAOS
  3/9/2016  2

Malkin: Oh, good, I missed that line. That does sound hopeful. Crossing my fingers!

BaffleBlend: I'm late on the scene so I know very little about what Creatures Online was supposed to be like. What about it were you not liking before it was canceled?


Conclude with killer catchphrase.
(Lurhstaap)
"This is not knowledge -
this is information!"
New Model Army, "Courage"

 
BaffleBlend

BaffleBlend
United States  


  3/9/2016

Lurhstaap wrote:
BaffleBlend: I'm late on the scene so I know very little about what Creatures Online was supposed to be like. What about it were you not liking before it was canceled?



Well, for one thing, the redesigned norns just didn't look like norns. They looked more like real life monkeys... which I hate... seriously, they're my least favorite animal, those disgusting fleabags...

Secondly, I began to hear rumors about plans of microtransactions. We all know how bad those are, especially with as many features as Creatures could potentially be charged for.

Thirdly... it was online-only. Most people who know me know that I despise online-only games with a passion. This even applies to MMOs. Creatures being a single-player game just makes that worse.

 
Dragoler
Wrong Banshee

Dragoler
United Kingdom  


  3/9/2016  1

Whatever they chose to do I just hope they keep in touch with the community...

Just one more tweak before bed...
 
Lurhstaap

Lurhstaap
United States  

 visit Lurhstaap's website: Addicted To CAOS
  3/9/2016

Oh, are those the ones marked Creatures 4 in the icon presets? Yeah, I didn't like that design much myself. It wasn't the monkey look for me though, it was the art style. It was too... overtly modernized. It looked like it was trying way too hard to have a 'hip, now, Millenial' art style.

I personally don't mind microtransactions. I've had a lot of good experiences with them when they're done well. However, I do realize that a lot of companies abuse microtransactions, which has given the whole idea a bad name, which is unfortunate IMO. I would not have minded paying for, say, additional species of Norn - that's little different than the old school Life Kits, after all. But it would've been wrong to charge for stuff that was basic in earlier games, like a Science Kit or somesuch.

I have to say, an online-only single-player game doesn't make a lot of sense, on a number of levels. Wouldn't it be cheaper to store more of the game player side?

It does sound like this all is for the best, given all of that...


Conclude with killer catchphrase.
(Lurhstaap)
"This is not knowledge -
this is information!"
New Model Army, "Courage"

 
BlocklockCity

BlocklockCity
United States  


  3/9/2016  3

Lurhstaap wrote:
Oh, are those the ones marked Creatures 4 in the icon presets? Yeah, I didn't like that design much myself. It wasn't the monkey look for me though, it was the art style. It was too... overtly modernized. It looked like it was trying way too hard to have a 'hip, now, Millenial' art style.


For real... I appreciate the effort that went into Creatures Online, but the first thing I would have done in it if it came out was breed norns that looked as much like norns as possible.

 
GimmeCat

GimmeCat
United Kingdom  


  3/9/2016  2

Malkin wrote:
Spil Games has acquired the Creatures IP from BigBen Interactive, and is developing...



Yay!

Malkin wrote:
...a free-to-play mobile game




...nm.

 
Dark_Author

Dark_Author



  3/9/2016  3

It says in the article that starting THIS SUMMER, they will be releasing multi-platform teaser games with the aim of "delighting the existing fanbase" before they try to really reign in a new audience. This could be really promising.
 
C-Rex
Norn King

C-Rex
United Kingdom  

 visit C-Rex's website: The Norn Nebula
  3/10/2016

This is very good news - to be honest I was pretty sure the game would never see the light of day. It's a shame people are still cynical about a new creatures game but I guess you can't please everyone! :P

Come and join the Creatures Community on Discord!

My Portfolio

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Papriko
Peppery One

Papriko
Germany  


  3/10/2016

Lurhstaap wrote:
[...] But it would've been wrong to charge for stuff that was basic in earlier games, like a Science Kit or somesuch.

You mean such as charging a super rare ingame currency for fast-forward which is extremely difficult to acquire without microtransactions, essentially locking the function behind a paywall? FC wanted to do that. Who says that Spil doesn't try this again, looking at how they already go down the same general path as FC with their F2P online microtransactions concept.


Lets play plants! Photosynthesis... Photosynthesis... Photosynthesis...
 
jcnorn

jcnorn
Sweden  
Moderator



  3/10/2016  2

I will remain cautiously hopeful for now. I can feel it in my whole body that I want to hype SO bad. But I also know how bad it felt with CO. First when we saw the new norns, and then micro-transactions, and then the gameplay itself felt more like an RPG or clicker-game, with the plants the norns had to harvest so you could get coins to buy a ball.
I think I will hype more depending on what the teaser-games turns out to be like. It will be good for us to see their line of thoughts and it will be good for them as well, to see our reaction.

 
Lurhstaap

Lurhstaap
United States  

 visit Lurhstaap's website: Addicted To CAOS
  3/10/2016

Papriko wrote:
You mean such as charging a super rare ingame currency for fast-forward which is extremely difficult to acquire without microtransactions, essentially locking the function behind a paywall? FC wanted to do that. Who says that Spil doesn't try this again, looking at how they already go down the same general path as FC with their F2P online microtransactions concept.



IF the ingame currency was actually super rare, then yes, that would qualify. However, I have played, and in fact currently play, plenty of games using a dual currency system that doesn't work as an effective paywall. On FlyingForHome.com they use a dual currency system, and certainly I spend a good chunk of money there, but I CHOOSE do to so because I'm lazy. :p I could get every single thing in that game for free and many, many people do. The pay currency is available in a number of ways - you can even sell or give it to other players directly, meaning it is ALWAYS available to EVERYONE at a reasonable price, since it's in everyone's best interest to keep the site economy stable. A site with a good, strong, player-driven internal economy should do fine with that kind of system, assuming earning opportunities within the game itself are set up well. At FFH they give out hecka free pay currency, as well as items that normally cost pay currency, to supply the economy and keep prices at the correct levels.

So I've experienced plenty of times that such a system CAN be done right and doesn't HAVE to work as a 'you don't have to pay but really you do' ripoff system. Heck, I even have two years of past experience as head admin at such a game running such a system and balancing such an economy. When done right, that sort of thing is a HUGE boon to lower income and younger players in particular. As a company you get paywall type benefits from your richer, lazier players, but everyone else doesn't get stuck behind a paying elite and the game doesn't turn into a pay to win thing. It's really quite nice.

Unfortunately, I've also experienced the crappy ripoff forms of the idea too though and I understand why the idea makes people wince. We'll just have to hope they follow the successful model put out by the games I've played rather than the scammy model more often used by mobile-type games.


Conclude with killer catchphrase.
(Lurhstaap)
"This is not knowledge -
this is information!"
New Model Army, "Courage"

 
Doringo
Lodestar

Doringo
United Kingdom  

 visit Doringo's website: Doringo's Dominion
  3/10/2016  1

I don't really like the feeling that it gives off when it says "Mobile game" and I also think it's a bit worrying how they acquired the IP from Bigben, which kind of seems to imply that gameware doesn't really own the IP anymore?

I hope it's a good game, though I'm not really a mobile gamer.

EDIT: It seems to say "mobile and web" so maybe it'll be playable through my PC aswell.
This too: "These are designed to delight the existing Creatures fan base, while igniting enthusiasm with a fresh new audience in anticipation
for the 2017 release.
"


"The Shapers are the oldest, most respected, most secretive and most powerful of the magical sects. The Shapers have the power to magically create life."
 
GimmeCat

GimmeCat
United Kingdom  


  3/10/2016  1

Name one good free-to-play mobile game that doesn't include IAP and waiting for timers. BAM, hype-buster!
 
BaffleBlend

BaffleBlend
United States  


  3/10/2016  1

Judging from the general tone of this thread, if Spil really wants us to be the target demographic instead of rich moms with whiny toddlers like most f2p games, then they're going to have to step up their game, and soon.
 
Puddini

Puddini
Argentina  


  3/10/2016  2

I'll wait until we see more of this game and then I will state my opinion.
 
ylukyun
Axe Maniac Diva

ylukyun

Manager


 visit ylukyun's website: Engineering
  3/10/2016

Doringo wrote:
I don't really like the feeling that it gives off when it says "Mobile game" and I also think it's a bit worrying how they acquired the IP from Bigben, which kind of seems to imply that gameware doesn't really own the IP anymore?



Perhaps they just acquired the IP for a sequel (i.e. what CO was supposed to be.) Who knows though. When was the last time anyone even heard from Gameware?

 
BaffleBlend

BaffleBlend
United States  


  3/10/2016

ylukyun wrote:
Perhaps they just acquired the IP for a sequel (i.e. what CO was supposed to be.) Who knows though. When was the last time anyone even heard from Gameware?


Certainly not Gameware themselves. Anyone in this fandom trying to work with agents knows that all that's left of their websites are a few faint wisps.

Hell, even the URL "gameware.com" is owned by an unrelated local video game store in Baton Rouge now!

 
Lurhstaap

Lurhstaap
United States  

 visit Lurhstaap's website: Addicted To CAOS
  3/10/2016  2

Yeah, from my limited experience in the business world (particularly the Internet/digital business world), I'd say Gameware is dead as disco. Even the incredibly tiny "company" I worked for managed to keep its websites online, on shared private servers (sounds like an oxymoron, I know, but what it means is the server was shared between the other websites owned by the same company, rather than being part of a bigger server farm where we'd be sharing with who knows who else.) Including when they weren't profiting, purely from the personal pocketbook of the owner. Granted, that dude was pretty well off. He bought 20k pythons the same way I'd buy a $50 corn snake. But still. If it's so bad they can't even keep a dot com up, at current prices, they're dead. I could personally, myself, afford a dot com, and I'm poor. In fact I HAD a .net for a year for the sheer fun of it. It may not even be an issue of money so much as will and organization. You need good people to get anything done - flooding a problem with money doesn't always solve it.

I know of a game that was very successful, pulling in a good amount of money. It had the potential to become big. REALLY big. But one year its owners just shut it down out of the blue. Why? Because they'd 'never planned for the game to get so big' and the underlying code wasn't scaling well. And while people with actual business experience/knowledge would have done the obvious (recode/upgrade for current needs), they just shrugged and threw in the towel. The reason being that years had gone by since they started the site, their interests and lives had changed, and they'd more or less lost interest. Now, why they didn't SELL the site and make a butt-ton of money while allowing their players to keep enjoying the game - that's beyond me. I really do not get that decision at all. But the point I'm trying to make is that even with a very successful website or game, the administration can just lose interest and stop putting the work in. And that's effectively the death of an entire company to apathy. It's less common, but it can happen with larger companies as well. And Gameware was never exactly huge anyway.


Conclude with killer catchphrase.
(Lurhstaap)
"This is not knowledge -
this is information!"
New Model Army, "Courage"

 
Sonicfan2525

Sonicfan2525
United States  


  3/11/2016

Well this was certainly unexpected! I wasn't expecting to hear any new Creatures related news for a long time after all the things that happened with BigBen and Fishing Cactus. While I am being cautious about this, I can't help but be a little excited. The numerous mini games being released throughout the year sound really promising.

I am just curious as to how the game itself will look and run. If they are acquiring the license from BigBen and are aiming for a 2017 release, then does that mean that the game will be similar to what Creatures Online would have been? Will it at least use some of the same assets or will everything be completely new? I'm really interested in seeing a gameplay video.


"I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay... small acts of kindness and love."
- Gandalf the Grey in "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey"

 
VioletGrendel

VioletGrendel
Ireland  


  3/12/2016

I'm hoping that it will be something more in the spirit of the old Creatures games - and the age group does sound promising. Also the fact that they're releasing teaser games over the summer, which should allow us to tell them where they're getting it right, and where they're getting it wrong. I can't help being worried about it though. As people have been saying, it could all too easily turn into a bad thing too.
If they have acquired the IP though, I'm hoping that they'll release the Treehuggers etc! :D


What is the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything?

42!

 
Lurhstaap

Lurhstaap
United States  

 visit Lurhstaap's website: Addicted To CAOS
  3/12/2016  3

The 2017 minireleases are indeed a promising feedback opportunity. This gives me hope that they are sincere in their desire to pitch the game both at an adult audience and the original/remaining Creatures community.

Conclude with killer catchphrase.
(Lurhstaap)
"This is not knowledge -
this is information!"
New Model Army, "Courage"

 
SpaceShipRat

SpaceShipRat
Italy  


  3/15/2016

I'm most skeptical about the ETA. 2017? that gives them a year and a half, and they're apparently going to spend some of the time making "teaser games", whatever that means.

Either they'll have to drop the ALife aspect, or they'll have to push that release date a couple years forward.



 
Lurhstaap

Lurhstaap
United States  

 visit Lurhstaap's website: Addicted To CAOS
  3/15/2016

I thought 2017 was when the teaser games were scheduled, not the actual game itself? I may have misread though.

Conclude with killer catchphrase.
(Lurhstaap)
"This is not knowledge -
this is information!"
New Model Army, "Courage"

 
jcnorn

jcnorn
Sweden  
Moderator



  3/16/2016

We don't know how much of the stuff fishing cactus made they are going to use though.
 
3kul

3kul
Australia  


  4/7/2016

I'm obviously pretty late to this party! I recently read the news but am having a bit of a hard time understanding what exactly it means for the next Creatures game.

So Spil Games is a new publisher and distributor, but it does not yet seem clear what Fishing Cactus' role in all of this has become.

The comment thread on their Official Statement back in January has some discussion on Spil Games' acquisition of the Creatures series, although it appears that FC have been kept in the dark.

... as stated we are not involved in those discussions anymore and actually learnt the news at the same time you did. From what the press release is saying, it is probably not going to reuse much of what we created but that's not certain.


Big Ben owns everything around the game and its content and code as well so I'm pretty sure there is nothing one can do to salvage it and reuse it without their consent.


[On whether or not Spil Games has bought the content/code] I'm afraid that's not something we know, we are currently trying to get that info as well as it is tight to some legal aspects of our contract with them.



If they're going to be releasing teaser games "this summer" it's very hard to imagine them not using FC's content.

 
C-Rex
Norn King

C-Rex
United Kingdom  

 visit C-Rex's website: The Norn Nebula
  4/7/2016

I'm hoping they'll use a fair amount of FC, seeing as they've been working their butts off these past five years. However, I'd be perfectly happy with them making their own content. I just hope it doesn't end up like Creatures Online where the game was constantly being delayed to add additional content.

It also appears that Spil Games purchased the domain Creaturesfamily.com a day after the announcement, and it is currently set to redirect towards their main website. Sadly it seems as though the original Creatures Online website is still down due to an error.


Come and join the Creatures Community on Discord!

My Portfolio

Check out my Creatures Stream

 
Bifrost

Bifrost
Norway  


  4/7/2016

I sure hope they'll decide to make the norns look far more like the original Creatures norns than the direction Fishing Cactus was heading. FC's norns didn't look like they belonged in the Creatures series at all. (Then again, neither did the C3/DS norns imho.)
 
Moe

Moe
United States  

 visit Moe's website: Creatures 2 to Docking Station
  4/7/2016

I was never really happy with either games, but I do feel bad for the FC developers. Even if it didn't fit my personal preferences about what a Creatures game is, they still put a lot of effort into it. To have a project you've worked on that hard, for that long, pulled out from under you is rough...

That said, I'm confused then... So Gameware Development has sold the rights? At the time CO was announced, I thought they had licensed out the material but still held the rights. Now it sounds like everything has went from GW to Big Ben to this new Spill Games. Anybody know what's going on? The current Gameware site is still advertising Creatures, and "Creatures 4" using CO material no less.

As for the new game... Once again I'm not thrilled about where this is going. Creatures is first and foremost an artificial life simulation game, and those words just don't mesh with "mobile" to me. Have enough norns alive on your computer and it slows down...what sacrifices will be made to keep it running on mobile? ...

 
C-Rex
Norn King

C-Rex
United Kingdom  

 visit C-Rex's website: The Norn Nebula
  4/7/2016

You never know, most smartphones these days are pretty powerful things. Not to mention creatures games aren't really suited to run on modern PCs, so they're not able to fully take advantage of the new hardware available.

Come and join the Creatures Community on Discord!

My Portfolio

Check out my Creatures Stream

 
Razgriz

Razgriz



  4/7/2016

Yes smartphones can contain some strong hardware for their size but one has to keep in mind that the cost of said hardware is battery life. We're not talking about a dedicated gaming handheld like the 3DS which is solely purchased for gaming reasons. On top of whatever mobile games people partake in when they have time, the smartphone needs battery to be able to receive and send texts, make phone calls and so on. A fair amount of sacrifices will have to be made to reduce the battery drain and that's only just the beginning.

I can understand why they want to risk banking on mobile platforms even though it's not exactly a thrilling choice like Moe said. Ultimately it comes down to wait and see what their plans are.

 
SpaceShipRat

SpaceShipRat
Italy  


  4/7/2016

I'm also confused about the rights situation. they did say "licensed" originally.

Oh and the Creatures Online forum and website have been broken since a week after the news. I'm not very hopeful, my bet is they'll take a look at the underlying technology, realize they're in over their heads, and bolt.



 

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