Actually there's allready a pretty sophisticated visualization of the core state in place. The problem in the introduction video is, that the core's memory is blank.
I agree that everything that helps to make it more acessible is a good thing. But I'm not sure how to implement your suggestion to anthropomorphize the cores to gain insight into it's state. The state of a core is mostly defined by it's memory but it's not clear what that state means. Is it good or bad? You can write programs that modify their memory to change the behavior or change their neigbours. You never know wether a word is value or instruction. So the only honest visualization seems to be a visualizatin of the memory's content on the word level. But it's not ideal... because despite all the colorful pixels it's not really human-readable.
Here's how it looks like when the cores are actually doing something.
The scenario works like this. The red ones execute a very simple program that lowers the overall score. The blue ones try to shield themselves and only when the shield is fully charged they also decrease the score. The green core is the only one the player can write to. And there's 100.000 energy to spend.
What you see in the animation is how my reference solution solves the challenge. First it copies itself to the north. The copie does the same. Secondly it starts copying itself to the right and when it's done with that it will transfer all energy to it's right neighbour. The right neighbour is adjacent to the shielded "enemy" cores and with it's own and the transfered energy starts to weaken the shield. As soon as the shield is down the program starts overwriting the enemy cores, when that is done it will also transfer all energy to the right neighbour. So once the second row of shield is reached the attacking core has a good chunk of the row's power at his disposal to weakin it quickly. Once a row is fully overwritten the program detects a friendly core ahead and starts to use all energy to raise the score. After a while all "enemy" cores have been hijacked so all cores are now either raising the score or providing their power to help. This program manages a score about 25k. And all this seemingly complex behavior is defined by only 66 bytes.