Or more widely known as Creatures - if you’re not familiar with it (and unfortunately I’d take a bet you’re not), it’s a 2D simulation “artificial-life” game featuring rather odd beings known as Norns and Grendels. I don’t believe it is the first, but it is likely one of the first games to utilize neural networks for simulating some surprisingly complex beings.
Before you read too far into this article, I’d very highly recommend purchasing a copy of Creatures and taking a look at it yourself, as otherwise you’ll be missing a lot of important context!
In late October, I was given permission by EemFoo from Eem Foo’s Archive to take a look at a prototype of Creatures (referred to as Creatures 0 by the community) from March 1994 (it should’ve since been made available for everyone). This is back when the game was called Small Furry Creatures - hence the title of this article - and, at the time, was targeting ol’ MS-DOS as opposed to Microsoft Windows.Continue reading
Wait, what prototype? This one here.
I came across this a while back and was surprised to see it. I was quite excited in what would be there to see given the age of the prototype and was sad to see very little discussion about it online.
If you’ve never even heard of Shadow Man yourself, I might suggest picking it up digitally somewhere such as on Steam or GOG (or buy yourself a physical copy on eBay) - it’s a good ol’ third-person game based on a comic-book of the same name.
Otherwise if you’re like me and have tried playing the game a number of times in the past but just haven’t had the time, perhaps take an opportunity to watch this pretty decent playthrough of the game.Continue reading
It’s taken awhile, but it’s finally here! The first video in my analysis series.
Yes there’s a lot of additional information I didn’t cover in the video, or details I may have overlooked. You might also be wondering what my sources are. In this case I recommend checking out the documentation I’ve written out alongside the video.