Sunday, April 5, 2015

An 'Annotated' C2 Guide

I want to talk about this book really quick, since there was a post on Discover Albia about these guides recently and I've been meaning to post these photos for a while now.

Creatures 2 was my first Creatures game, thus, for all it's flaws and stability issues, it will always hold a special place in my heart. Those first few years of falling totally in love with this bit of virtual life was certainly difficult-- a fresh install was almost impossible to play due to OHSS, and while 3rd party content, especially genomes, made the game quite a bit more viable, it had the dark potential of making it even more unstable if COBs were improperly written. Regardless, many hours of my preteen and early teenage years were spent trying to understand this game, fascinated by the depth of it, especially when I could draw startlingly accurate parallels between the chemical reactions taking place in the norns and the same reactions I was learning about in biology class.

As obsessed as I was, of course, I had to have every bit of information about this game as I possibly could, and this eventually led to the pinching of valuable allowance pennies to save up for this tome of knowledge.

I recall at the time of this book's release, reviews were mixed within the community. Some were annoyed that they were expected to shell out $20 for information that should have been included in the manual that came with the game. Others considered it to be fairly worthless, since all the information contained therein could be found on fansites in much greater depth. I don't recall my exact childhood reasoning, but I think ultimately what I wanted most was something creatures-themed that I could hold in my hand and flip through, whether the information was particularly useful or not.

Looking at this book now, I find myself quite amused at how it shows its age. It includes dated suggestions such as copying an exported norn onto a floppy disk to give to a friend! I also got a huge nostalgic kick out of the dated list of Creatures websites, including Albia 2000 and The Norn Underground

But by far one of the most amusing parts of the book were all the little notes I, in all my childhood innocence, proudly wrote to myself as I discovered new things about the game that I believed the even the advanced guide failed to mention. I commented on the uselessness of the Aphrodisiacs tab, stating that the Advanced Science Kit was "much easier." I warned of the dangers of the chemical concoction machine, and claimed the the neuroscience kit was "not very useful"

I'll let the rest of the photos on the page speak for themselves. At the end are two parts of the book that amused me personally: one of a pair of grendels, and the other congratulating the C2 development team for an 'early' delivery, since, well, most of us know how that release actually went. 


  1. Your annotations are awesome, Amai! I never wrote in mine, although I wish I did so I could look back and see what I was thinking at the time. As dated as some of the content is (same with the C1 guide) I'm finding lots of inspiration as I'm reading through mine. I'm glad I'm not the only one who loves going back through the guides, even if it's just for a little laugh!

    1. Aww, thanks :> Sometimes I think I should pick up a copy of the C1 guide since I've been dabbling with it lately. It might oddly be actually kind of useful now since so much of the information and tips regarding C1 are buried in various graves of the internet, hah.

  2. "these grendels are happy because they've just eaten a norn"?
    really? there trying to make the kids who were playing at that think that they are carnivorous monsters? you know how C2 was all buggy?.... i think i know why C4 is taking some time...
    there maybe some bugs that they are trying to iron out! -----Muggy