Spore, released in 2008 by Maxis, was a groundbreaking game in many ways. As one of the earliest examples of a “God game,” Spore allowed the player to control every aspect of life on their creature’s planet. Because it was divided into five different life stages, Spore felt like five games in one, with the added complexity of earlier choices affecting those later in the game.

The player began as a tiny, single-celled organism fighting for survival. Each decision directly impacted the player’s creation as it evolved into a creature, then developed intelligence, formed a civilization, and finally entered the frontier of space. This game evokes nostalgia for many gamers who fondly recall playing their way through the five distinct stages.

If you’re looking to relive the glory days but want to switch up your game choices or even discover new favorites, here are ten games that you need to check out, roughly in order of the Spore stages they mimic.

Cell Stage

This is the first stage that lasts until you guide a new species cell through a primordial ooze. You start with the body of a young cell that can move around and explore.

1. Multicellular

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
Multicellular | Source: Steam

A visually simple yet complex cell vs. cell game, Multicellular offers many of the same aspects as the cell stage of Spore. Players are encouraged to design unique organisms using a full spectrum of body parts that determine the cell’s purpose.

Whether the player chooses to prioritize armor and camouflage or attack strength and speed, the ultimate goals are to find food, evolve, and, ultimately, survive. The game offers a variety of game modes, and players can even use their cells to compete in an all-cell match! In Multicellular, imagination is the limit.

Visuals And Gameplay

Despite the complicity in the visuals, the game sells off a pretty compelling narrative. You’re tasked to survive as a group of cells in the harsh environment of mother nature.

There are many enemies in sight; as a cell group, your main goal is to edit your DNA to a point where you can battle and overtake most of your foes. Unfortunately, the visuals can be improved significantly, but the current game is light enough to be played on older platforms as well.

What To Expect?

You will be heading back in time to customize your arsenal comprising 100+ cell types. Consequently, you will need to track your hunger levels while fending yourself against the swiftest, most poisonous types of enemies.

Currently, there are four types of game modes at the time of writing:

  • Evolution
  • King of the Puddle
  • Football
  • Genetic Superiority

Moreover, there are a total of seven maps spread across the mentioned game modes that can be played in both single-player and multi-player.

Creature Stage

This stage implores you to hunt other species in order to gain DNA points. You can also try to befriend them, but that route can be much harder.

Once you reach sapience with the creature, the stage concludes, and you’ve transcended to higher stages.

2. Niche

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
Niche | Source: Niche

If you enjoy watching genetic change happen in real time, Niche is the game for you. Much like the creature stage of Spore, this “God game” allows you to fully control the fate of your creatures, beginning with their design. Create your unique critter, then watch as newly introduced individuals affect your initial population.

Your task is to ensure that the changes from natural selection are positive. Watch genetic flow occur and guide your creatures as they face the challenges of daily life and, ultimately, survival. 

Visuals And Gameplay

In terms of visuals, Niche feels more like a collab between Minecraft and Digimon. The graphics are vibrant without being out of place. Luckily, Niche can be run on lower PCs as well – purely because of its lax graphical requirements.

Having said that, you will have a complete HUD that allows you to control the entirety of your game settings. Plus, it’s an exploration-based experience, so there will always be something to experience.

What To Expect?

Your main goal is to protect your tribe against the looming threats present in the vast wastelands and jungles. Despite the main idea being about defense, you would be required to expand as rapidly as possible in order to keep up with the ever-increasing pace of Niche.

Despite it being clunky, the game is still pretty amusing and interesting to play. Ultimately, it’s a game based on evolution. Therefore, you would find solace in it – given you enjoyed playing Spore.

3. Eternal Cylinder 

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
Eternal Cylinder

Much like the creature stage of Spore, Eternal Cylinder begins with the player hatching a new creature. Immediately, it is clear that the area is dangerous, and the creature is forced to run from an enormous entity.

The player is forced to fend off other creatures, search for food, and learn how to stop the deadly cylinder. Along the way, the creature obtains various mutations that allow it to survive and explore the wide, open world of Eternal Cylinder. 

Visuals And Gameplay

Eternal Cylinder features a near-AAA grade in terms of visual fidelity. Its alien-like world is a mystery to behold. You will be expected to navigate with the help of an in-game map.

The game uses general single-player controls with helpful instructions popping up along the way. Since this one is also mostly exploration-based, you can expect the combat to remain at a minimum.

What To Expect?

You will go through various labyrinths and caves for recon and exploration. While the puzzles are always challenges, the difficulty of the game is tuned for it to be playable to a large demographic.

Unfortunately, Eternal Cylinder is graphically demanding. Therefore, you would need to at least have a GPU if you want to hop into the fun. The color grading is also optimized in such a way that you lose a sense of time.

4. No Man’s Sky

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
No Man’s Sky | Source: Wccftech

Despite an initially rocky release, No Man’s Sky has since been updated to a substantial level and has earned a spot on this list. With both interplanetary travel and infinite planets stocked with unique flora and fauna, the game falls somewhere between creature and space stages. Successful players find themselves drawn closer to the center of the universe to understand the source of a mysterious, perhaps dangerous, energy pulse.

Survival depends on outsmarting local creatures, upgrading your gear and ship, and determining your character’s future through careful choices and alliances. The beautiful graphics and endless exploration possibilities will knock your space suit off.

Visuals And Gameplay

While No Man’s Sky isn’t specifically known for its stunning visuals, the game still features a unique aesthetic that draws you into its world. The entirety of No Man’s Sky has this Blueish Violet theme to it that makes you want to keep going on.

The gameplay is pretty similar in nature to Eternal Cylinder. However, the story is more optimized and updated with new features and bug fixes coming on a regular basis. From launch till now, No Man’s Sky has experienced a phenomenal improvement.

What To Expect?

No Man’s Sky is a game that lets its players decide about the progression. If you want to explore, then you can explore from lush green forests to dry tundra. But, if you want to learn more about the world, you should explore the vast wastelands.

Everything can be done – given you have enough curiosity and patience to explore it. From the small towns to indigenous life to the gathering of the elements, you should always be on the move!

Tribal/Civilization Stage

This stage deals with the species’ independence. You’re tasked to form societies that can survive simple natural conditions while progressing ahead of the competition.

Since the main premise is to exercise competition, you must formulate unity that can outperform other societies – even if your society members are not as good. Consequently, you will be fighting for conquest against other societies.

In spore, this works by claiming Geysers, but since every game has a different path of conquest, you would need to go full throttle from the very start if you want to win.

5. The Universim (Tribal and Civilization)

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
The Universim

Perhaps one of the closest matches to Spore, the Universim offers the chance to guide a species as it advances from something like the creature stage to the tribal stage and, finally, the civilization and space stages. The player guides their creatures, called Nuggets, as they gather resources, conduct research, and face the threat of other species.

Unlike Spore, this game offers some added complexity, as players’ choices directly affect the planet’s health. Resources are not infinite, overharvesting can lead to disaster, and city development can spur global warming. In this game, every decision has ramifications, placing the player firmly in the role of creator and sustainer.

Visuals And Gameplay

This is a world builder that incorporates visually pretty graphics with a compelling storyline. You will be looking to build houses, progress through the skill trees, and expand your village.

In terms of raw visuals, you can expect them to be one of the prettiest in a world builder. However, the game still retains some of its backward compatibility – meaning it can be played on relatively older devices.

What To Expect?

You’re the one in control here. Whatever choice you make dictates the fate of your village, counter, and, ultimately, the planet. While the gameplay is quite identical to Spore, it has its fair share of unique takes on how the world-building and in-game mechanics work.

Released in 202, the game has everything from bizarre to mysterious. You’d wonder why there’s a monolithic meat-grinder while sitting on the edge of the caverns roasting a piece of meat. There’s so much Universim overflowing that you’d always be busy planning your next move for your civilization.

6. The Sims 4

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
The Sims 4

Another example of a cult classic, the Sims 4, provides hours upon hours of unique gameplay and content. Sims games have kept players entertained since their very first release, Sim City, in 1989. Taking the “God game” to new heights with the release of The Sims eleven years later, Maxis continued to build on the foundation of customizable cities and theme parks by creating a game that might remind you of the tribal and civilization stages of Spore.

Through complex features such as character design, construction of detailed buildings, exploration of nearby locations, and the chance to build friendships or relationships with computer-generated individuals, The Sims 4 sets itself apart and promises that it is worth playing.

Visuals And Gameplay

Sims 4 is practically mainstream at this stage. Therefore, you won’t have to worry about the graphics or gameplay being subpar. Rather, the game tends to take the generic elements of a worldbuilder and take it to the next level by allowing you to interact and nurture the growth of your characters.

While the boundaries of a worldbuilder have been well-maintained, Sims 4 does a tremendous job of utilizing the underlying potential present in the said genre. Moreover, the controls are simple enough to understand – even for players foreign to the genre.

What To Expect?

Sims 4 features emotion-based gameplay. Therefore, your every action and choice will make a significant impact on their mood and behavior. You can’t make discrimination without being prepared for the consequences.

Plus, the game is getting constant content updates and hotfixes, so you can expect the gameplay to be crisp and smooth. Keep learning new skills while making your Sims look as idealistic as possible, and you’d never have a stale moment!

7. Ark Series

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
Ark Series

After customizing their characters, players of Ark find themselves stranded on an island with no recollection of how they got there. In order to survive, they must forage for resources, build shelters, tame or kill local animals, and survive the elements. Leveling up provides resource points, which can be used to develop knowledge and discover new crafting recipes.

Much like the tribal and civilization stages in Spore, players must create a safe home for their characters. With chances to collect resources and pursue upgrades, players can discover the high-tech gear and build complex bases to keep tamed pets in and unwanted visitors out.

Visuals And Gameplay

The series’ graphical prowess goes beyond just being compelling. It’s a game that has experienced an insane boom in recent years, and it continues to boom amidst the heavy world-building competition.

The gameplay is pretty simple; you must take care of your dinosaurs while building your base. The game has a healthy mix of options to go for, and the progression is good enough to make you keep going. Plus, it features an insanely fun multiplayer.

What To Expect?

You can expect everything ranging from competition against fellow players to companionship with your pet dinosaurs. The world of Ark is as pretty and realistic as it gets when it comes to depicting prehistoric environments in a game.

You have this plethora of stats and statuses as soon as you jump into the game. There are islands, dinosaurs, and weird creatures that you’ve never seen before. It’s up to you to survive to become the king of the wild.

8. Banished

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out

Playing a good deal like the civilization stage in Spore, Banished requires players to design a city for a population of banished people. Players utilize the characters to collect resources, care for livestock, build structures, and provide for the community.

Unlike most city-building games, Banished does not limit what the players can build based on experience but makes every structure available at the beginning of the game, so long as one has the supplies to build it.

Resource availability varies from map to make, and players are forced to make decisions to protect their little communities from disaster and ensure their safety, happiness, and survival.

Visuals And Gameplay

While the visuals aren’t necessarily ‘stunning,’ they’re good enough to give you the information you need. Banished is a relatively lightweight game that can be played directly after purchase.

The gameplay is true to the core, and you will get to enjoy every bit of it. Everything is there for a purpose, but the game doesn’t go out of its way to restrict you to a single build path. In a sense, it truly makes you use your head to make strategic decisions.

What To Expect?

This is a simple word-builder in its truest sense. There are no bothersome skill trees, weird restrictions, or any annoying payment walls. You get to experience a clean old-school game with a complete mechanic-set of a modern game.

It can be challenging at first, but it allows for creativity to take over the general meta concept. Therefore, as long as you’re creative enough, it can be pretty easy to find avenues for constant success and fun.

9. Driftland: The Magic Revival

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out
Driftland: The Magic Revival

In a unique take on a civilization stage city-building game, Driftland allows players to expand and build a magical realm, gaining power and control. The once-whole planet of Driftland was torn apart by battling mages, but after the passing of time, new mages emerged to rebuild the planet to its complete state.

As a mage, players are able to build their realm and power by re-attaching floating islands, gaining access to the resources contained on each. As players explore and the realm grows, they must defend their territories from other attacking mages and emerge as the victorious power to restore Driftland.

Visuals And Gameplay

Driftland is a game that features next-gen graphics in a simple yet compact size. You get to see this beautiful fairytale-like kingdom come to life with the help of your governing and strategic genius.

Pair that with one of the most easy-to-understand gameplay, and you’re set up for a long and fun journey. Plus, everything is laid out with helpful instructions, so it’s pretty hard to lose your way here.

What To Expect?

You will experience a simple yet sellable narrative that can get you hooked from day 1. While it has its fair share of similarities to Spore, the game ultimately takes off on a different tangent.

Therefore, it acts as a good change of pace while still making you relive the same experiences with different twists. The graphics are something to drool over, so we recommend you exercise caution before diving into this rabbit hole of fantasy and ash.

Space Travel Stage

The final stage implores you to get out of your home planet to explore the wonders residing in outer space. Since you’re essentially tasked to control an empire, the mechanics from here onwards can be extremely similar to a generic world-builder.

Your reach expands from a simple domain to vising Interstellar civilizations, initiating cosmic trade, and much more!

10. Starbound

10 Games Like Spore You Need to Check Out

With its two-dimensional graphics, Starbound might initially remind players of Terraria more than Spore, but a closer look places this game solidly into the space stage category. Players find themselves stuck orbiting an unknown planet after surviving a brutal attack and must forage supplies to repair their ship and escape.

Through space travel, character and base design, resource mining/selling, and interactions with various races, players can form alliances and set their own paths. Unique quests take the players from planet to planet as they choose their own adventure, perhaps seeking ancient artifacts to save the world from the chaotic force that nearly killed them or maybe building a tricked-out base on a distant planet.

\With freedom between storyline tasks and the ability to set the pace, this game appeals to experienced and novice gamers alike. 

Visuals And Gameplay

Despite being extremely fun to play, the visuals of Starbound can – at times, look a bit outdated. It features a Terraria-like world with similar mechanics and enemies to behold. While you can’t make many changes here, it’s still an addictive experience nonetheless.

You, along with your trusty gun, are tasked to craft your way to outer space. While the tutorial levels are helpful and fun, the game can admittedly get redundant with time – specifically if you’re a fan of Terraria.

What To Expect?

The gun shooting animation and fighting mechanics are extremely fun to master. Starbound had a shaky start, but since then – the game has managed to ride on the high horse to improve is an exploration to the point where every area is a unique experience.

You’re going to enjoy this game – no doubt about it. Handling the traditional routines in a sub-interstellar environment can not only be fun but addicting as well. The introduction of the crafting mechanics is also an extremely good addition that helps you progress through.


It’s admittedly difficult to find a game that truly compares to Spore. With its complexity and control over design, Spore still stands as a classic game long after its release. Providing five unique gameplay options at once, Spore ensures that you won’t be able to find another game quite like it.

Despite that, the games above come pretty close, each in their own way. Give them a try, and they just might help you rediscover the joy in character design, exploring far-off lands, and ultimately, changing your own fate.