12 Best Games Like Spore that Bring Worlds to Life


Spore was one of the new ventures designed by the renowned video game designer Will Wright along with Maxis Studios in late 2008. The game is a unique blend of various genres by design. Amazingly, the game was a great success, selling over 2.8 million copies since its release. With this level of influence, it’s no wonder that multiple games like Spore have since popped up, trying to emulate and even surpass the popularity of the original!

In the game, you start as a cell, and it puts you on a journey to form a space-age civilization that explores the stars and the galaxy. It was ambitious for the time, and it delivered on multiple fronts.  


In this post, I’ll present you with a list of games like Spore, where you can turn your wildest imaginations into reality. But before that, let’s take a look at:

The Concept of Spore and the Reason for its Popularity

YouTube video

Various genres of gameplay are showcased in different aspects of the game, starting from an established civilization. The genre starts as a real-time strategy and even acts as a space exploration game.

Interestingly, the character creation starts with the exploration and resource hunting of the space age. This unique blend of the genres charmed millions of players to spend hundreds of hours in the title.

There’s a reason games like Spore have captivated a large player base in the genre. It’s basically a God simulator where you can shape the world at your will. Moreover, you can see how it develops.

So, without any further ado, here are some of the gems you want to consider for your next playing session:


Taking direct inspiration from the original Spore, Thrive aims to bring its quirks to modern times. Thrive builds on what Spore did with more intricate gameplay.

Each stage represents different aspects of a species’ development. Like Spore, you start as a single-celled organism, embark on the journey to get this living cell, and work your way to make a space-age civilization.

YouTube video

The game tries to explore the different outcomes within the simulation. Furthermore, players are subjected to the game’s environment and natural hostilities.

Players are also given multiple creation tools, just like Spore, to form hand-crafted life forms or abominations beyond anyone’s imagination. The choice is yours.

The game is in early access but with a very positive rating right out of the box on Steam. 

Release Date: 26 November, 2021

Developer: Revolutionary Games Studio

Publisher: Revolutionary Games Studio

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

Species: Artificial Life, Real Evolution

YouTube video

Species: Artificial Life, Real Evolution has a scientific, more grounded take on Spore’s World building simulation. Still in Early Access, Species: ALRE promises to accurately represent natural selection, mutation, and evolution. It provides tools and data to accurately study the changes and outcomes caused by players’ decisions.

It also generates a clade diagram to display every single change to the sandbox in detail and a satellite map to see the location of each species that has evolved in your save.

Release Date: March 12, 2021 (Early Access)

Developer: Quasar Dynamics

Publisher: Quasar Dynamics

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

Grow: Song of the Evertree

YouTube video

Grow: Song of the Evertree puts you in the boots of the last existing Everheart Alchemist. In this game, your sole purpose is to keep the magical Evertree healthy and maintain peace and harmony between the environment and the people.

Armed with the power of Myora, the building block of creation. Here, you are tasked to save the Evertree by pushing back the Withering, the representation of chaos and discord. As the Evertree heals, people who have left the settlements come back to live peacefully and happily under your command.

Preview Product Rating Price
Grow: Song of the Evertree - Nintendo Switch Grow: Song of the Evertree - Nintendo Switch No ratings yet $35.80Amazon Prime

Protect the Evertree, form communities, and maintain your settlements in this colorful and therapeutic world the Prideful Sloth has created. Not only that, Grow: Song of the Evertree allows you to form different world seeds from the materials you collect in the overworld.

World seeds, when planted, form an entirely new area at random, which you have to look after, forming smaller worlds in the overworld to explore and expand upon.

Release Date: November 16, 2021

Developer: Prideful Sloth

Publisher: 505 Games

Civilization VI

YouTube video

Sid Meier’s Magnum Opus is considered by many veterans of the genre to be the best of the best that turn-based strategy and world-building games have to offer.

Civilization VI is an in-depth civilization simulator and 4X game that aims to give you every small knob and every little switch of control on a small group of people. Your goal is to turn them into a world-renowned superpower. Everything matters, and your decisions will make or break the nation you are building.

Preview Product Rating Price
Sid Meier's Civilization VI - Nintendo Switch Sid Meier's Civilization VI - Nintendo Switch No ratings yet $24.60Amazon Prime

Civilization VI features an extremely customizable government system, along with unlockable policies with the civics menu. Such control gives the players fine authority over how they want to lead their country or diplomacy. Moreover, AI leaders have realistic and believable traits to make the whole experience more immersive.

The beautiful cartography-based art style and intuitive menus with endless possibilities make this a game that you will not regret sinking hours into.

Release Date: October 21, 2016

Developer: Firaxis Games

Publisher: 2K Games

Dawn of Man

Unlike the other games in the list, Dawn of Man is a highly specific real-time strategy/colony simulator. The game sits right in between the Stone Age and the Iron Age, which is roughly 10,000 years of prehistoric human history.

Help your people with hunting, gathering, and piling up resources for the harsh weather cycles for your people to survive. There are settlements that you will need to build and expand upon for the survival of the human race.

YouTube video

Research and discover new ways to survive; maybe you will find a way to start a fire or invent a wheel that helps with transportation immensely. Moreover, you can find a way to grow food and settle conflicts between communities. 

Dawn of Man celebrates the hard-fought survival of our ancestors and takes the player to the forefront of nature’s cruelty that they faced at the time.

Release Date: March 1, 2019

Developer: Madruga Works

Publisher: Madruga Works

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

Kerbal Space Program

You are in charge of the Kerbal Space Program, a space agency founded by the alien race called the Kerbals. Furthermore, your task is to explore the skies with whatever you can build (of course, while keeping them alive). Launch the crew into orbit and make space stations and probes for the scientific advancements of the Kerbalkind.

Kerbal Space Program, for what it is, has some really impressive aerodynamic and orbital physics. Although the game has quirky visuals and sound effects, the freedom to choose which parts to use to build your ship is incredible.

YouTube video

There are three game modes available; the Science mode allows you to conduct space experiments that help in the innovation of new technologies. This will help the Kerbalkind, meanwhile, the Career Mode puts you in command of every aspect of the space program. This ranges from the construction of the rockets to strategizing the trajectory and the path the rockets take, funding, upgrades, and many, many more.

The third mode is the sandbox mode for you to go wild with whatever beastly contraptions you want to test out to see if it works.

Release Date: April 27, 2015 (1.0 Release)

Developer: Squad

Publisher: Private Division (formerly Squad)

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

Oxygen Not Included

Well, in Oxygen Not Included, a crew of space colonists are stuck deep inside an alien space asteroid with little to no resources. Now, it’s your responsibility to command them and ensure their survival. But be extremely cautious as the resources start to deplete as soon as you start breathing. So start digging if you want any hope of surviving.

YouTube video

Build extreme colonies with weird and quirky power systems and use resources you never thought were remotely usable. Handle the psychological and physical aspects of the survivors and keep them in check. This is because different people react differently to stress, and sometimes they react destructively. That’s the last thing you need when you are trying to survive.

With its charming sound design and art style, this real-time strategy survival game is cute yet challenging.

Release Date: May 18, 2017 (Early Access)

Developer: Klei Entertainment

Publisher: Klei Entertainment

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

No Man’s Sky

No Man’s Sky had a shaky start when it first launched. However, the devs at Hello Games Studios managed to completely turn the ship around and build a compelling sci-fi RPG.

This will make you stop in your tracks and just enjoy the achievement this game is. A whole galaxy with procedurally generated worlds just waiting to be discovered. Work with or against numerous factions, interact with the interplanetary trades and economy, or become a pirate who preys on the weak for loot and riches.

YouTube video

This game gives you a sense of freedom with its in-depth crafting, dogfights, base building, and setting up interplanetary colonies. Furthermore, the game is known for some stunning visuals that you can experience in VR as well.

Dive in solo or up to 32 players multiplayer through the Space Anomaly social hub. This allows you to embark on the exploration with a group of friends or visit their bases, with a huge modding community behind it.

No wonder No Man’s Sky has garnered a huge community of dedicated players who have clocked hundreds, if not thousands, of hours into the game.

Release Date: August 9, 2016

Developer: Hello Games

Publisher: Hello Games

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

Endless Space 2

Some might describe Endless Space 2 as a Sid Meier’s Civilisation clone in space. Veterans of the 4X genre consider it as one of the pinnacles of what turn-based strategy games have to offer. Sega’s little-known gem.

Moreover, unlike other 4X strategy games, the factions at your disposal are written deeply from their philosophies. This ranges from different expansion techniques and conquering methods to their culture, social constructs, technologies, and beliefs.

YouTube video

You will gather resources, research, and expand from your home planet to other planetoids and even other solar systems, dominate the galaxy, find planets and other bodies to colonize, and have to deal with pirates and other militants from other civilizations and empires around your region.

You have to keep your diplomacy, economy, policies with your people and other empires in mind, and your military prowess. The visuals are almost unmatched in the genre, with a unique and beautiful art style and full of personality. This is the 4X genre at its purest, but with very few downsides. Though it has a steep learning curve, it’s one of the best entry points for the genre.

Release Date: May 19, 2017

Developer: Amplitude Studios

Publisher: SEGA

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

Impossible Creatures

Ever thought about what you would get if you combined a crab with a monkey? Well, let your imagination run wild with Impossible Creatures. You need to fight off evil with the units built from your own creativity.

YouTube video

With over 50 animals to choose from, mix and match to your heart’s content to make them the most efficient or goofy creatures imaginable. You can put them against enemies in a compelling single-player campaign across various remote and diverse islands.

And if you want some more control over the fun, the built-in level editor allows you to make the missions of your own, which gives some unprecedented replayability to an already charming game.

Release Date: January 7, 2003

Developer: Relic Entertainment

Publisher: Microsoft Studios

➡️ Check it out on Steam.


Eufloria is one of the more unique real-time strategy games that work around the audio/visual presentation to the players. This ambient strategy game gets you engaged in space exploration where the barracks are trees, the troops are seeds, and the bases are asteroids, and your job is to expand your domain across the system with the seeds and plant trees that are either offensive or defensive, depending on the situation.

YouTube video

Eufloria’s muted color palette and clean, simple visuals are minimalistic and easy on the eyes, and the sound design is relaxing and chill to match the mood and vibe of the game.

This game is nothing short of a piece of art that caters to its niche very well, and if you are in the market for a game to relax to, this game is one of the top picks you should consider.

Release Date: October 20, 2009 (Dyson), February 14, 2012 (Eufloria)

Developer: Alex May, Rudolf Kremers

Publisher: Omni Systems Limited

➡️ Check it out on Steam.

Populous: The Beginning

Launched in 1998 on Windows PC, Populous: The Beginning was the third entry and the first 3D version in the Populous series, and it was quite ambitious for the time. The game gives you the role of a Shaman, and the main objective is to achieve Godhood.

YouTube video

You command and control a tribe against the other shamans and their tribes through the solar system, conquering them and discovering new arcana and magical sources. For an old game, Populous’ third entry introduced terrain deformation and manipulation, along with “smart” villagers and NPCs who automatically completed the tasks to the series, but its “identity crisis” with it being a God game and an RTS was criticized at the time of the launch.

Nonetheless, Populous: The Beginning is a unique entry in the genre with 25 missions in the main campaign, along with an expansion pack with 12 more missions. It is definitely worth a try in 2023.

Release Date: November 30, 1998

Developer: Bullfrog Productions

Publisher: Electronic Arts

Author’s Verdict 

Well, these games will give you a taste of what it feels like to be a god. You can create and destroy civilizations, worlds, and people according to your will. What else do you need?

All the games are handpicked based on the reviews and popularity. These games are enough to keep you hooked on the screens for quite some time.

If you want something a bit more strategic yet personalized, check out our list of the best turn-based RPGs that you can play today!


Ritesh Jha
Ritesh Jha
Hey there, I remember back in 2007 when I got my first computer and discovered the wonderful world of gaming through playing Mario. From then on, gaming has been a huge part of my life, and it's crazy to think that it's now my career! I love writing about all kinds of games and making sure my articles are both fun and accurate. By the way, if you ever want to challenge me to a game, I'm up for it!

Related articles

7 Best Simulation Games for Nintendo Switch to Experience Life-Like Adventures

Escape into fantastic virtual realms with best simulation games for the Nintendo Switch!

13 Best Free FPS Games on Steam: No Bucks, Just Bullets

You don't have to invest any money to play decent FPS games. Explore these free FPS games on Steam that deserve a spot in your collection!

Elden Ring: All 5 Godslayer Incantations Locations (Complete Walkthrough)

Godslayer incantations conjure black fire & inflict percentage-based damage. Here’s how you can find all 5 Godslayer Incantations.

How to Get the Gold Jointed Bracelet in Red Dead Redemption 2?

You need a Gold Jointed Bracelet to craft an Alligator Tooth Talisman; it reduces Dead Eye core drainage by 10%. Let’s see how to find one in the RDR2 world.