BCM63 - Spore herding

(6:44) Level 7 ('The Library') on Legendary. Relating to my Spore herding article, this shows various bits of fun with the spore herd formed in BCM62, around 150 strong.

Released January 12th 2013, gameplay recorded January 9th-10th 2013.


00:02 (General herd dodging) First up, some general herd dodging with no spore casualties at all. Not much to say here, but at about 0:57 the herd is kind of broken up and I jump through gaps a few times. I end the proceedings by wiping out the herd with an AR.

01:54 (Herd hopping and glob formation) Here I concentrate on trying to hop over the bulk of the herd; and as you can see, it eventually results in getting the herd tightly clustered in a glob. There's just one spore casualty along the way. Things become especially neat at around 2:26 when I start a regular sequence of hops. It felt like I could've kept that up indefinitely, but eventually I thought I'd better break the rhythm for fear of boring my movie audience. Herd hopping and glob formation are actually only things I cottoned onto while making the movie.

02:48 (Ring formation) Now for a bit of 'ring' play. I mostly try to give you a nice view of things by looking in towards the centre somewhat, but it's relatively hard to do because the spores make your aim and direction jiggle about, which could make you run into spores. At 3:16 I get a bit close to the door and brush against it, causing a brief deformation of the ring (visible around 3:19).

At about 3:30 I make an effort to look more towards the centre; that's when it's hardest, and when I'm most prone to running straight into the oncoming spores. For a few seconds they're flashing past my face, which is something I wanted to show a bit of. It's hard to maintain that for long.

Eventually I bring things to a close by whipping out a plasma rifle (which I'd swapped with my AR beforehand) and blasting the oncoming stream - which was harder than it looks. I was trying not to get an overheat, but it steamed up right at the end so I did a bit of whacking instead.

04:00 (Waves and moving ring) Starting from a ring formation which only needed a few seconds to form, I do some backing off while arcing left and right, causing nice waves to flow forward, sometimes producing a 'moving ring' effect - an effect which shows up quite nicely starting around 4:27. As you can see, reversing your direction to come back the other way can be done quite smoothly. There's a spore casualty at about 4:26 when I get a little close to the herd, but that was the only one.

Towards the end - starting around 4:45 - there's a small group of spores which has become separated from the main mass - an imperfection which can quite easily happen. I didn't manage to get them back in touch, but it's certainly possible. I would've liked to get the formations more perfect but it was pretty hard. I could've done with more open surroundings, as it was a job not to end up going into walls when backing off.

As with herd hopping and glob formation, these enjoyable aspects of pattern formation were actually only something I came up with while making the movie. So I expanded my repertoire of spore fun quite a lot!

04:56 (Wipeout) I've already done two wipeouts to end parts of the earlier fun, but now here are three more rounds. Firstly the shotgun, which is rather satisfying. The final spore gets lucky and escapes a blast, but I nail him with my next at point blank range, ha ha. And then I have a go at the Monitor for good measure.

At 5:32 comes the needler. At first I just fire slowly, knowing I'll get extra casualties from chain-reaction popping (though it's quite limited on Legendary compared to lower difficulty levels). I fire more rapidly after that and the popping gets more intense, but eventually realize I'm likely to run out of needles (I should've made sure that needler was full to start with), so I take care of a bunch of spores with a frag grenade. The final spore pops from a needle as it leaps at me, which I thought made a nice finish.

Finally, at 6:06 we have the assault rifle; and as you can see, it's a pretty fast worker!

06:22 (Suicide) Another amusing thing you can do is let yourself be killed, so I worked this example into the movie, figuring that my spores deserved a tasty cyborg treat for being such good sports. The Monitor finishes things off nicely with an amusing line and a bit of singing.

Closing remarks Ok that movie was a bit longer than my usual sort of length, but I hope it didn't outstay its welcome, and I hope you didn't get too dizzy from watching it. I had a lot of activities to show, and decided to try and pack them into one longish movie rather than break things up. That said, I may well show some of these activities in greater depth in other movies sometime. Plus, there are some things I haven't even shown yet, so you should definitely expect more spore herding fun. Pity it's taken me until my 63rd movie to show any, but at least I got there in the end.

There was a significant degree of framerate slowdown which you probably noticed, but I didn't find it too bad to play with. However, all those spores bobbling around started being a bit of a strain on my eyes, so I was glad when I'd completed all the play for the movie.