One very underrated aspect of Spore are those little moments and events which remind you of the scale of the universe you play in. The biggest example in my head right now is the random visits you would get in the creature to civilization stages by spaceships, but random highly-detailed structures you would find, such as statues and monoliths with a random chance of being generated, also provide that sense of continuity through a rather disconnected series of mini-games.
It would be cool to have those moments in Thrive as well, but we obviously want certain limits. Since Thrive is priding itself on a commitment to scientific accuracy, we don’t want to overdo it by suggesting that the evolution of life on your planet has been controlled from the get-go by alien life on your planet. But there are definitely more moderate forms of these Easter eggs which can be implemented within the game.
A pretty big center of this discussion on these forums revolves around the ascension stage, where hhyyrylainen suggests a sort of endless loop where the player will descend from their godlike form back into a unicellular organism on a specific planet. That’s a very meta way of connecting the start of the game to the finish.
I also have a few ideas which I feel are simple and unobtrusive. giving the player’s world some character. In the civilization stage, there could be a cool little feature which allows you to look under a microscope at microbial organisms, reminding the player of the endlessly small world they left behind some time ago. There could also be fossils the player can find of their ancestor organisms or other notable animals in their aware stage playthrough, which would essentially be the skeleton of the creature with a filter to create the whole rock-impression look. These can be pretty trivial things with no real consequence or use other than fun.
Other than that, the whole “alien artifacts” thing, where in the organism stage, obviously non-natural monuments or structures have a very small chance to spawn, can give the whole Ancient Aliens vibe, although I think these should be approached with restraint.
On this note, one of the thing that came to mind when I first played the game is that at the start it feels very empty with other life lagging way behind you. In spore there are always creatures that have surpassed you in their evolution; in the cell stage those are other cells that are bigger or have new parts before the player gets access to them.
In thrive we could not only include cells that become large eucaryotes before the player has a chance to, but also bacterial colonies and small multicellular life forms.
In the creature stage you might have to deal with diseases caused by unicellular life (descended from you), and you might see other creatures display more “advanced” evolution (like the higher level creatures that exist in spore), or even the beginning of tribal society.
These are kind of different ideas to what you are talking about, since they aren’t strictly cross-stage and aren’t hidden Easter eggs but should be very well-displayed to make thrive’s world more diverse and lively, but as you said having stuff like alien spaceships randomly visit your planet is too cartoonish for thrive and this is a related concept that I had been thinking about.
Yes but I’m thinking it could be coded to push auto-evo to create advanced organisms much faster than the player could, or maybe some should be already present at the start of the game. What’s the current consensus on having other (more advanced) lifeforms since the start of the game?
Yes that’s why it wouldn’t be simple to add design-wise, but LUCA wasn’t the first life on earth, there was other life similar to it that was eventually outmatched and went extinct, so I thought the idea might have been considered.
Otherwise boosting the speed of evolution for NPCs would be a good idea imo. Encountering an eucaryote (or a colony) very early on sound like fun and should be guaranteed to happen every play through.
We probably will figure out ways to make the nucleus more attractive. And also to make other species more effectively be able to overtake the player a bit. Though we need to be a bit careful as the player basically will lose the game if another species becomes aware (much) before them, as the timescales are wildly different (microbes take 100 million years per editor cycle whereas proper multicellular creatures will be only some millions of years).
In the civilization stage, there could be a cool little feature which allows you to look under a microscope at microbial organism
There could also be fossils the player can find of their ancestor organisms or other notable animals in their aware stage playthrough
I like these two ideas a lot. They are perfectly based on real science and also very cool.
Other than that, the whole “alien artifacts” thing, where in the organism stage, obviously non-natural monuments or structures have a very small chance to spawn, can give the whole Ancient Aliens vibe, although I think these should be approached with restraint
This one is interesting, but I agree it should be done in moderation.
As for an idea of my own, I think this could be interesting: if, in the awakening/society stage, a creature or group of creatures where to develop a religion, the names for gods in that particular religion could be “pulled” from a pre-made list. That way, different civilizations form different planets and playthroughs would use the same names to refer to their gods. That would suggest that those gods actually exist in some capacity in-universe (as in, they themselves would have told their name to the people of various planets), but not confirm that.
Kind of like how in Spore, different empires across the galaxy all worship Spode. This could also create a Thrive “quasi-lore”, or at least something funny/interesting for fans to talk about, while being unintrusive to the gameplay.
I’ll make an example:
society Fregh from planet Urgh worships Wappa, Dipp and Sgh;
society Gri from planet Werhj worships Tip, Dipp and Sgh;
society Gro, also from planet Wehrj worships Wappa and Dipp.
Or also the player’s name from a past save that reached Ascension Stage. That would actually make it cross-stage.
Or maybe even just the player’s name in the current save? Even if I’m in Microbe Stage, I technically am God for having created that save in the first place. So the list would be developers + player. That is interesting to think about.
one could try to make game events that happen randomly (but the chance grows over time), such as oxygen catastrophes in the first billion years, which lead to a decrease in temperature (the deeper the biome, the weaker it is affected) and mass extinctions, because of which the player will suddenly have to abruptly start saving energy, or, for example, meteorite bombardments, which increase the temperature and the amount of inorganic compounds on the planet as a whole, or, alternatively, you can arrange an ocean bloom, due to which there is less oxygen, and the metabolosomes/mitochondria become less efficient, leaving the player to adapt to new conditions. Yes, even trap volcanism can be realized (temperature increase, decrease in the amount of oxygen and organic matter, but an increase in the level of inorganic matter, iron there, or hydrogen sulfide), in short, a lot of events can be taken from real life, and on the auto-evo screen you can report the beginning of some then the event and its duration, so that the player has to get out
I don’t know how this can be attributed to Easter eggs, but it seems to me that such game events would be quite fair to call them. At the same time, it would be possible to make some kind of ultra-rare event that does not change anything, but can pop up on the player’s auto-evo screen, like a joke, for example, “An ancient Evil has awakened” or “Winter is Coming”
in the end, nothing changes, but these events pop up for fun
I think the former are more related to compounds and environmental changes but would still be cool to see in game. I like the latter suggestions though; wonder if having them would be copyright however
In any case, such “events” Easter eggs can refer to many other phrases, and they can be reworked to increase the absurdity of such Easter eggs, for example: “Summer is coming”, and even the same references to songs (of course, not just taking names ). By the way, this, of course, is more or less a local joke, and I hope that I don’t seem like a jojophagus who has gone, but with some absolutely unrealistic coincidences, for example, when meeting exactly the same organism generated by auto-evo, or when of all possible events of the stage at the same time, the player would receive the secret achievement “Stands of the same type”, changed, for example, to “Evolution of the same type” (or something similar that fits more into the concept of the game), well, probably, many guess what This phrase refers (to an absolutely absurd set of circumstances in the finale of the third part of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure). Do not think that I am a rabid jojofag, but, it seems to me, with a random and absolutely absurd coincidence, this phrase would fit perfectly as a reference🥺
I think it would be cool if you could start a new world by having one of your races directly PUT life onto a planet. In which case, you would definitely be able to see alien artifacts if you leave any for yourself. This would also allow you to thrive on a very different planet from what you usually could, which would just be cool to see anyways.
It could also be okay to imply some planets’ life is made this way without your own intervention if it is a rare enough thing. That way it doesn’t feel like EVERY playthrough is artificial- just some, like real life would have it. Which would also make the artifacts even more mind-blowing, knowing that out of all the places you could’ve been put on and out of all the ways life could’ve originated in your playthrough, you just happened to wind up either on a planet that used to have life and now does not, or you were put there by something greater than yourself.
Also, the idea of fossils and looking under a microscope is a MUST. I’ve taken it as a given this whole time that these features will be implemented- the microscope especially- and thought about it a lot. My biggest question is if you do add a microscope, will auto-evo continue evolving organisms from the cell stage even after you’ve become macroscopic? Because otherwise, we’d be seeing the same species as when we left that stage, which wouldn’t be the case in real life.
Then again, you probably do have to continue auto-evo shortly after you enter macroscopic, or else all macroscopic organisms would just end up extremely similar to your first macro organism. Your macro LUCA, I suppose. They’ll diversify after a while, but the development of- for example- plants, would occur a lot faster if plant-like cells became macroscopic themselves, rather than your organism evolving from whatever it is now, into a plant over millions of years. I’m assuming in this scenario you’re playing as an animal or similar, not a plant.
So I suppose it might not be too absurd to keep the auto-evo going on the side even after macro life has become properly evolved and advanced. Probably tone it down compared to the cell stage and early macro stage, though.