Creatures has three worlds, each one different and running seperately. The three worlds are the Tree world, Island world and the Swamp world, which are connected by portals that only open after a certain number of norns are living in the current world. There are no ettins in this game, and grendels only appear in the Island and Swamp worlds. Both the Swamp world and the Island world contain a 'game-within-a-game' each, the Swamp world containing Boulder Norn and the Island world containing Pac Norns. In order to reach one world to the next, a breeding pair must be sent through the portal to the next world, which functions similarly to a teleporter. However, the portal will be closed if the world has yet to reach a population of 8 norns.
In this game, norns have visible health bars, hunger, pain, tiredness, exhaustion, boredom, etc. Color mutations do not occur, and norns use only predetermined full sentences, "I am hungry!", "Ouch, I am in pain!", etc. Instead of a hand the player plays as Scrubby the fairy. Scrubby can fly anywhere that a norn has visited previously and can teleport both to the currently selected norn and to the next norn on the list of creatures. Scrubby can give simple commands, such as "come here", "go away", "stay here", "come here and push" and other such commands, as well as having the ability to reward and punish norns. The commands which Scrubby will say when the button is pressed depend on various factors, such as if Scrubby is hovering over certain objects or if Scrubby is holding certain objects, such as food. Scrubby is also able to directly interact with the environment by activating toys and teleporters.
Creatures PS1 is more of a game than a simulation, but, while you have goals, you do not have to achieve them.
Creatures PS1 is generally disliked by many of the Creatures Community, due to it's lack of depth and genetics, both of which would have been unable to be emulated using the software available on the Playstation at the time. Other features that are obviously not possible such as downloading new Cobs, adopting new Creatures, and colour mutations.
In addition to the gameplay the game's graphics are also heavily criticised. Both Creatures and its sequel, Creatures: Raised in Space both have relatively low-resolution visuals, possibly to make less of a difference between in-game sprites if they originate from different games. This can be clearly seen on norn breeds that use body parts from Creatures 3.
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