Play With Spider
The Centre For The Easily Amused (CFEA)

South Africa by Mandy J Comments View Comments

Spiders seem to invoke terror in all but the least faint-hearted so if you're one of those wishy-washy types you may wish to play with a hamster instead (although there's a spider there too). Meanwhile, should you possess the necessary fortitude and an interest in variables, you will probably enjoy Play With Spider.

Play With Spider, by Gothenburg, Sweden's Tomas Eriksson, is a browser-based 3D Flash application that, well, allows you to play with a spider. You got that already. It was in the intro. What's more exciting is that it comes with variables that enable you to change the spider's attributes on the fly (and also, there are actual flies).

I first found this - what would you call it? Virtual amusement? - about 18 months ago and since then it has changed slightly. The old background used to be a map of Europe (it's now a US dollar bill on concrete), there used to be a "spider colour" attribute that you could play with (sadly, no longer available), and you couldn't pop it into full screen (the more squeamish who have come this far may still not want to - especially if they have a large monitor).

Play With Spider

However, for the most part it's exactly the same. You can drag sliders on the following attributes, which appear as a toolbar if you click on the tiny "Options.." text: spider speed, spider scale, body height, body scale, walk bounce, leg thickness, leg reach, raise height, view angle, and shadow angle to change the appearance and gait of the spider and, of course, the results are best experienced rather than read about.

You can also tick a box and take full control of the spider, moving it around the screen with the arrow keys, possibly to enthral your cat (more on that in a second). If you'd rather just observe its built-in behaviours, play with the attributes and then pause to watch what happens. If you double click or hit the spacebar you can drop a fly on the ground at the mouse cursor and the spider will head towards it and consume it. If you leave the spider to its own devices it will tend to wander towards your mouse cursor and occasionally he will then wander off the screen, which can be quite disconcerting if you aren't aware that he does this, but you can quickly lure him back with some flies.

Play With Spider

For bonus amusement, if you have a cat and don't mind paw prints on your monitor, you can entertain yourself as you entice your cat with a tasty treat, as these videos demonstrate: [ 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 ].

Posted: 5 February 2010 in CFEA under virtual pets. OpinionShare/Bookmark
Rating: 8/10
Time-Wasting Value: 5 minutes
Learning Curve: 3/10
Entertainment Value: 7/10

Key Facts
Official Site: Play With Spider
    Developer: Tomas Eriksson Comments Speak Your Mind

Shop | ZA

Shop | Amazon US

Shop | Amazon UK

Shop | iTunes US iTunes US

Moxyland: The Soundtrack

Ads | Google