The Sporebuck is the currency in Spore appearing in Civilization Stage and Space Stage. The currency symbol in-game is similar to the "section" symbol (§). It also resembles the Simoleon, the currency used in Maxis's other games, SimCity and The Sims, in the shape of a barred-spiral galaxy. The maximum attainable amount is §99,999,999 (one less than 100 million) in the Space Stage and §999,999 in the Civilization Stage. Sporebucks received in excess of this limit are discarded. Sporebucks can be used to buy everything from tools and weapons to buildings and eventually entire star systems (after the trade route reaches full completion).
Sporebucks can be earned from trade routes with other nations, from refining mined spice, and from city income (made by pairing factories, houses, and city halls), and is used to buy the new buildings, vehicles, decorations, consequence abilities, and buying, or gifting opposing nations' cities.
In the Space Stage, Sporebucks are mainly earned by...
- ...selling Spice or Artifacts to colonies or to other empires (although any player can not trade with the Grox).
- ...completing missions for other species (with rewards from §5,000 to over §1,200,000, even for the Grox).
- ...collecting loot from destroyed spaceships and cities. They will be seen as bags with the Sporebuck symbol on them in a big tray.
- ...allied empires' gifts (starting from §10,000).
- Some empires such as zealots and warriors will demand tribute (usually about 45,000 spore bucks).
Precursor to the Sporebuck
DNA is also harvested for money in the Creature stage. They can be collected by befriending or killing creatures, or selling old parts in the Creature Creator. It is used to buy new parts, upgrade parts in Creature Creator.
Food (seen as chicken leg, apple, or chicken leg and apple pair in the toolbar), can be harvested by gathering fish (seaweed if herbivore), eggs, meat, fruit, gifts, or stealing with gathering methods. This can be used in the Tribal Planner for buying new huts and making more tribe members.
When starting out and entering to the Vehicle Creator, make sure to create (or select from Sporepedia) the fastest vehicle in the game, then save it, and begin to play. When first introduced to the game, immediately pause the game, purchase as many vehicles as possible with starting cash (usually 3 extra) and assign each of them to capture a spice geyser, starting with the furthest from the city first. Unpause the game and wait for them to capture the geysers. Be sure to watch out for Epics, as they can destroy the vehicles in one hit. Ignore the tutorial, claim as many geysers as possible before another city rises, this is difficult when playing on a hard setting as other cities are founded very quickly. When claiming as many geysers as possible, or when there are no more left to claim, go to the city and edit it, give it a factory, house, and entertainment center. Connect the factory to the house and city hall, and the entertainment center to the house (but not the factory). This will not only jump the. economy to a higher foothold, but will decrease chances of revolt, and religious takeover.
Later in-game, when more cities appear, conquer them using military or religious means (the quickest thing to do). However, while playing on hard difficulty, make sure to earn a lot of Sporebucks to buy all vehicles until reaching total vehicle cap to make conquering easier, or gift other opposing nations to improve the relationship and prevent from takeover. Take control of the continent, and get a port city rolling to claim off-shore spice nodes.
Nearing the end of the game, start buying an air or sea vehicles and start conquering the other opposing nations' cities. When they surrender, get converted, or get bought out, claim their spice geysers, and spend a pinch of Sporebucks to give them a factory, house, and entertainment buildings. Increased productivity in spice will lead to thousands of Sporebucks per minute. Then, use Fanatical Uprising, ICBM, or Global Merger. The cost of using these depends on how many cities there are left to capture. After every city is captured, be sure to maximize spice production, but without compromising happiness.
Tip 1: If an empire demands "unbeliever tribute", or a war threat you must carefully consider the consequences of paying the tribute or not. Paying the tribute forthwith negates the onset of war in the short term, leaving you to prepare for the future when the empire decides to come back. On the other hand, refusing the tribute (and starting a war) is most likely preferable should you have a sizeable army and navy. This may damage your economy short-term as the war continues, but long-term it is usually the best option.
Tip 2: If you see something that looks way too expensive, like 150,000 Sporebucks for a Colony Pack, turn down the offer. There is always a cheaper price.
Tip 3: If you have a colony that has a low spice capacity, buy Spice Storage and plant it on the colony. It helps spice capacity, so you don't have to go on a tax collecting run every two minutes.
Tip 4: If you see an Empire offering you Sporebucks, take the offer. Free money. Don't rely on these people, either.
Tip 6: You can't run around the galaxy, taking mission offers and delivering species without visiting your empire! Your colonies have spice up for collection.
Tip 7: Don't go off selling Spice for the minimum price. You can sell red spice at a red spice-producing colony for 225 Sporebucks (281 on Easy), sure. But some places have it up for over 13,000 Sporebucks (over 16,000 on Easy), sometimes even in the same system.
Tip 8: If you're near your homeworld (within three interstellar jumps away this will depend on your Interstellar Drive) and low on energy, don't stop at a nearby empire. Just go to your home-world.
Tip 9: If you want quick money, go on "tax collecting runs" on your colonies to collect spice.
Tip 10: Maximize all colony production power. More spice production=More Sporebuck Production
Tip 11: Try to get your hands on planet that has purple or pink spice (It can be sold for much more than most spices)
Tip 12: Try to ally or defeat any nearby empires that do not like your empire because they may demand Tribute from you that cost up to Millions of Sporebucks and refusing to pay will make that Empire angry at you! This is also debatable because those Sporebucks could be better used to negotiate an alliance. Tip 1 is contradictory to this statement. Decide whether you want to pay the money or not. The more profitable route would be to make an example of the opposing empire by destroying/taking their cities and stealing their spice. This will produce more money due to loot received from broken star-ships and ruined cities. In addition the conquered colonies will produce additional income for your empire whereas in order to achieve peace the player would need to pay money and dignity to the hostile empire. Finally, there is nothing like the sound of a once-proud empire begging for peace and a chance to escape right before their cities are reduced to ash. Ultimately the choice is up to the player. Appeasement, will provide momentary peace until the empire demands for more. War: you leave their civilization nothing more than dust in the solar wind. Make sure you have adequate weaponry and that the colonies you care about are well defended
Tip 13: Use a monolith on a purple spice T-score 3 planet and wait for evolution (make sure the planet is large, you can see the size of the planet on the interstellar view). Once it reaches space stage, it will be a purple spice alien homeworld. Take over this planet, and with maxed buildings and spice storage, you will have a planet that produces 100 purple spice in less than ten minutes. Find a empire that buys purple for nearly 60,000 (70,000 on Easy) , and you have at least 6,000,000 in less than ten minutes, infinitely.
Tip 14: You can plunder spice from a civilized planet by using the Abduction Beam. They will not attack your space ship unless you abduct one of the civilians from the city.
Tip 15: If you and another empire have some bad history, and you want to cripple their economy, drop into one of their major colony planets and destroy their entertainment and factory buildings, or just terraform gigantic rivers and seas of lava to slow them down and prevent them from putting any more colonies on that planet. This will not work as NPC empires never place more than 2 colonies. However it is funny to watch the spice collectors drive around in circles trying to cross a river or mountain range.
Tip 16: It is advisable not to leave your homeworld before entering the space stage without putting collecting devices on all your spice geysers for maximum economic output. Also, give all your cities their maximum economic spice output (they cost a lot less in the Civ Stage, because no matter what you do, you start out with 100,000 Sporebucks in the space stage.) As the homeworld produces red spice (the cheapest spice), if you forget to do this, it isn't the end of the world.
Tip 17: Don't give more gifts than you have to. Often a careless or cash-strapped player desperate for an alliance or at least an end to the war will spend too much money for a peace treaty or even simple relations boost. Do it tentatively, nickel at a time, or at least, don't waste a few million on it. Also, you can only get +50 from money. This can, however, be extremely useful for improving the relationship with the Grox, although you can only get a maximum of +10 and it is extremely costly (millions of Sporebucks).
Tip 18: Always look for planets with other types of spice colors than what you already have when looking for a new planet to colonize. This strategy will pay off later on when trading rare spice with other colonies.
Tip 19: Tutorial mission objectives are not mandatory. Your empire will often ask you to make a red spice planet your first colony. Ignore this if you see a planet with better spice and a T-Score of 1 (ecosystem is irrelevant). Colonize that planet and the mission will still be counted as complete. If possible, complete the ecosystem and up-terraform the planet to start raking in cash.
Tip 20 (Optional): Download and install a modification that prevents the Joker badge from being attainable, such as Platinumspore; and use the moremoney cheat until you get your desired amount of Sporebucks. This method however, is not recommended because of the requirement to install third-party content that can increase the frequency of bugs, instability issues, and crashes.
- There is a glitch of some sorts that allows the player to obtain that extra Sporebuck and get §100,000,000. By following steps, go into the colony edit screen while already having §99,999,999, and obtain and discard a colony building, factory or entertainment building. After doing so, the game will give the player back all of their Sporebucks plus one more. On the downside, the effect will wear off after they exit the colony editor.
- Sporebucks can also be attained by the "MoreMoney" cheat (2,000 in the Civilization stage and 1,000,000 in the Space stage). Using any cheat in space stage will earn you the Joker Badge and disable achievements on that game.
- The Sporebuck symbol () looks very much like the galaxy NGC 1365 (or an Australian/American dollar sign).
- Simply typing the $ sign when in the editors can trigger the Sporebuck symbol.
- On another Maxis game The Sims, the money, the Simoleans use the same symbol (§).