Well, the folks at Maxis/EA were kind enough to send me an early copy of the full version of the Spore Creature Creator, the $10 pre-release creature maker for Will Wright's magnum opus.

The Creature Creator is officially debuting on the 17th, but since some other folks such as Kotaku's Mr. Crecente and Digg's Kevin Rose are also linking to movies of their delightful creations - and lots of videos are starting to pop up on YouTube after the hands-on Maxis visit earlier this week, I thought I'd document a few different stages of effort in making monsters.

Here's the first creature I knocked together, 'Fluffyleaf', and I describe him as a 'plantarian' in his description. This took me literally no more than five minutes to put together from start to finish, since it's simply a torso, a maw, a couple of pairs of hoiked-up legs, and some leaves where I guess wings should be.

He doesn't have eyes, as a YouTube commenter astutely notes, but that's because I thought he looked more stylish without them. Might lead to some evolution-related issues when the full game is released!

Click on the image above to see a hi-res version of him, or watch the video below for his slick dance moves:

If you want to know more about how the Creature Creator really behaves, Nate Ralph's hands-on explanation at Wired's Game|Life blog is the best description I've seen.

In the meantime, I'm just going to be doodling and noodling at greater length, and presenting you with the results. First, simple impressions? It's a heck of a lot of fun to make timorous beasties, and the social and YouTube upload features are just killer.

[EDIT: Hmm, looks like the Creature Creator free demo version somehow got leaked early. Still, I'll carry on with this, because it's fun, and I'm guessing the demo version has different capabilities to the version I'm using.]