After a great deal of anticipation, a brand new Creatures 4 blog post was posted by Fishing Cactus today! The news centered around Gamescom 2012, which wrapped up over the weekend. This latest update includes several new screenshots, along with a wealth of information. In a nutshell, the features include a tutorial for new players, speech abilities for the Norns, a science kit, complete ecosystems in each area of Sphericus, the Hatchery, and the Splicing Machine. It was enough to make me wish the release date for Creatures 4 was tomorrow! Alas, Q4 2012 is still the only official date we have seen up to this point. Chances are good that it might be pushed out even further into the future.
Allow me to pick up my magnifying glass and detective’s outfit, because there is actually a bit of additional information from the above screenshot! The box in the upper left appears to possibly be a sort of family tree, for the highlighted sections on the DNA strand are labeled as mother and father. I can’t be sure what the icons actually mean, but this might be a neat way of tracking generations in-game! The Hatchery box on the right has several eggs showcased, each with a gender icon associated with it. There is a box underneath the eggs… I wasn’t able to decipher it completely without going blind, but it looks like Norn breed and Norn personality are mentioned. Or I could just really be blind. It’s a distinct possibility! Finally, the Norn Collections window seems to have options for a “Splicing Targrt” and “To Breeding.” Collecting different colored Norns could definitely add a new and interesting element to the game! I actually really enjoy diversity in my Norns, so this could be something fun to work towards as another goal.
We also were treated to a much clearer view of the Science Kit. It looks like this young Norn just had something to eat! The advanced tab seems quite simplified, but come to think of it, I rarely use the in-game kits on a consistent basis. I usually check on the health of an ill Creature, or attempt to find any effects of a specific gene mutation in others. There’s a rather interesting looking purple plant growing in the upper right part of the background. The idea of being able to customize the decorative objects in these regions and see an actual ecological system has made Creatures 4 sound pretty wonderful! Note that Creatures 4 was renamed Creatures Online in 2013.