In the game, you can explore the galaxy with a spacecraft, encountering new alien races, and terraforming planets, like in the Space Stage.
Colonies that are successful provide the player with income and resources, which can be invested in technological research. Advanced Technologies allow the player to receive tools to terraform, colonize, fight, etc.
The game is also two-dimensional, unlike the present Space Stage.
You can download this prototype and others by clicking here:
Unlike modern Spore, planets were tile-based. Each small tile has a variety of plants and animals represented by symbols, which can only be seen on a GUI to the side when a tile is clicked. Planets also have well pronounced biomes on them, which is not present in Spore. Clicking sea tiles can also bring up seaweed. Planets without life are barren, featuring shades of gray that resemble rocks on the Moon.
Cities in this game are nothing like in Spore. On the map, they are represented by rectangles under a large and transparent hemisphere. Clicking on any brings you to a screen with crude graphics. You can see a grey "wall" and a green ground. Black dots will emit cheering sounds and gather around the bottom of your spaceship, which represent people. This bears a similarity to Spore now, colonists will often cheer when seeing your ship.
War in this beta is very simple and easier than actual Spore war now. If you manage to buy the "Zap" ability (select the bottom left square with text and search for Zap). You can use Zap on enemy cities. Clicking with Zap toggled on will degrade the city, depleting the amount of yellow rectangles, making the city less productive. You can also click on cities and shoot the buildings there. Zapping cities will make the other empire declare war.