One of the interesting features that makes Creatures 1 stand out so much is the meticulous detail that went into the background. Did you know that it was actually crafted by hand, photographed, and then manipulated to use within the game? Not too many games can boast that feat! Personally, I think it was the best decision: Computer graphics in the 90s could be very good, yet many games do have a dated look to them. Creatures 1 is old, but far from looking it!
The Creatures Wiki has an excellent article about some of the background behind this… Background? Terrible pun quota of the day fulfilled! There were three sections in total, two of which were sold on eBay. Fortunately, those made it to safe homes with Creatures fans! For the longest time, I was unsure what had happened to the main model, namely the one for the incubator and settlement regions. Perhaps it was common knowledge, but I often miss out on the obvious at times! It was always a shame to think that all of that work had disappeared, going unappreciated. Yet I was in for a surprise!
I very randomly stumbled across something posted on Twitter by John Metcalf. It was posted nearly a year ago, so clearly I wasn’t paying attention! The main section of the Creatures 1 model is housed in none other than the Centre for Computing History! That’s right: It’s safely displayed in a museum all about computers, information technology, video games, and more. If you take a look at the rotating images on the home page, the model can actually be glimpsed in the background! This was almost the best news that I could have stumbled across.
Why not label it as the best? The Centre for Computing History is located in Cambridge, England, while I’m located in the United States. Not quite an easy trip, although I would love to see the model up close in real life! Perhaps Creatures fans within the area of Cambridge will find this news even more exciting! Creatures certainly has a place in the history of gaming, and many of us have fond memories growing up with it. I’m so glad to know that this model is in great hands, and can be enjoyed by people of all ages! If you’re in the same boat as myself and can’t actually visit, though, there is a lovely series of images on Google+ from Brooks Moses showcasing the exhibit. Enjoy!
First Image Credited to the Creatures Wiki
Second Image Credited to the Centre for Computing History