If you're looking for a free way to kill a little time this week, the open beta for Maxis' spin-off action RPG Darkspore is in full swing through this Friday. If you're not in already, you can easily grab it on Steam . I jumped in for a couple of rounds of co-op last night - things start off extremely simple, and naturally the first few rounds are a breeze to hack 'n' zap your way through. Once you've leveled up a bit, though, you'll be able to string together missions of increasing difficulty for a chance at much better loot rewards. The graphics are extremely colorful, but I can't help but be disappointed that Darkspore won't let me build my own hero critter form the ground up.
If you're trying it out, weigh in in the comments and let us know what you think. Throw your screen name into the mix and team up with other PCG readers!