I have to say that this Blog Carnival for the CCSF 2016 has been really enjoyable to take part in. Not only have I thought more about how I play, but it’s been really interesting to hear what others are thinking! In more community news, the December 2016 Creatures Challenges are set to begin tomorrow. Head on over to the Discover Albia Forum to see if you might be interested… There is more to come next month, and we’re slowly moving towards a better system. Anyways, back to today’s prompt! Talking about third-party add-ons always makes me look in wonder at all of the improvements this community has created, and we’re still finding ways to make Creatures more enjoyable. An enormous thanks to all of the past, present, and future creators!
What COBs, Agents, Breeds, Metarooms, Etc. Do You Use the Most?
In terms of Creatures 1, I use a very select group of add-ons. C1 worlds can be a little finicky when they get too filled, and I tend to err on the side of caution. I typically use COBs that fix things, rather than adding anything brand new. The custom world I recently posted is pretty much identical to the world I always use! On that subject, I should have an alternate version out soon with some other suggestions from Malkin. I usually follow a whole lot of recommendations when it comes to Creatures 3 and Docking Station. Those worlds are full of customization options, and I’ve tried out a lot! I thought about making a list of some of my favorites, although I know I would end up leaving a lot out. My list of C3/DS underwater agents includes many of the agents and fixes I use in most worlds, and I have a few other COBs I use from time to time listed under my recommended C1 add-ons. There are a lot of excellent creations out there, though, and I’m always excited to try something new… Even if it’s from years ago!
What Would You Like to See More of?
Tough question, because my go-to answer is EVERYTHING. What I would really love to see are new creators, as corny as that may sound! It takes a lot to create something new, yet we tend to get so many new perspectives with new players. I feel like we’re all very open to teaching others about the more advanced sides of CAOS and genetics. There isn’t one tiny group of experts who want to keep that information purely for themselves. Ask a question, and you’ll typically have a handful of people trying to teach you how to solve a problem. Granted, it’s not always easy to jump in, and I keep meaning to post some simple tutorials. I also love seeing new creations from those who released something long ago, or just the other day. I may not personally use every new add-on, yet I’ll be excited about it! Create. You can do it.
What Would You Like to See Less of?
The only thing I never truly embraced were breeds that used up breed slots, yet whose sprites were simply recolored from the originals. This is most prevalent in C3/DS. Although it has the most breed slots available, there is still a limited number. Yet in pretty much every other case, no one can go wrong. Everyone seems to have unique ideas that translate into downloads that are completely different. So long as everyone doesn’t get the idea to create a million versions of cheese at once, I think we’re good to go!
What Pet Peeves Do You Have with Add-Ons?
First, not properly crediting someone or using something without permission gets to me… Yet I haven’t seen this happen anytime recently, and I can’t even remember a particular instance. I only mention this because I do know that it can happen, and the best thing to do is to simply ask. My policy might sound strict, but anyone who has asked to use something of mine has been met with a warm reception. Second, I get irked by a lack of a Readme file or some sort of identifier with a download. When I save these for later use, I have to go searching for any special installation instructions. More importantly, I have no idea who to thank for creating it unless I remember where I downloaded it from. A Readme can be the simplest text file that just lists the add-on, the creator’s name, and some quick installation instructions.
Finally, please be sure to properly test a new add-on. I’ve had some crashes directly related to incomplete COBs or agents that probably could have used a little extra time before being released. This isn’t to say that anyone should shy away from the creation process: Just be sure to inject your own creation and test it out for at least a few minutes. Everyone’s Norns, Grendels, and Ettins will be much happier for that extra check!
What Do You Love to See?
The boring fixes for the games are often my most favorite, but I know I’m an outlier in that respect! Anything that hasn’t been done before always gets my attention, too. I’m easy to impress, mainly because Creatures has so much to offer. Seeing others create and release new stuff inspires me to do more, too! So although I might not necessarily use a new download, I’ll feel the need to finish up a small project of my own. Chances are I’ll get sidetracked before that happens. Ha! I’m also impressed by the more nontraditional releases, such as art and stories. There are a plethora of talents that can be applied to Creatures. I’m looking forward to what comes out during this year’s CCSF!
As I mentioned in some previous answers, I’m constantly changing how I play the games. In particular, C3/DS seems much more open to different possibilities. I expect I’ll continue to try out different agents, breeds, and metarooms. There isn’t a perfect combination of add-ons because new releases come out quite regularly, and it’s fun to experiment with different objects. I’ve already mentioned it, but I truly appreciate each and every person who has taken the time to create for Creatures, or to teach about the concepts behind creating. Our community has many, many years of new ideas to put into the games!