LittleBigPlanet Review for PS3

On: PS3PSP

There's a feeling that an awful lot is riding on LittleBigPlanet. Some have called it the saviour of the PS3. Others have labelled it the most creative game of all time. It's even being held aloft as the poster boy for a new wave of user created gaming. For some it's just the game that is going to breathe life into the near-dead 2D platforming genre. So yeah, it's fair to say that LittleBigPlanet had the potential to destroy the dreams of an extremely vocal online community and hurt the company that invested a lot to bring the game to market. Thankfully developer Media Molecule has delivered a game that succeeds on most counts, fails in only a few and offers enough to be enjoyed by just about anyone.

For those not in the loop, LittleBigPlanet is a real-world physics-based 2D platformer that sees you take control of Sackboy (or at least a sackboy), a cloth-based anthropomorphic character that can leap about in glee (or sadness if you press down on the d-pad to alter his facial expression). One tap of the jump button will cause him to perform a skip-like jump that more or less skims the surface. Hold the button down and he'll jump higher. Your sackboy (we say 'your' as you're able to customise his attire and accessories to your desire) can also hold on to things by holding R1. This lets him move objects or swing on things, which come into play in the many levels Media Molecule has included.

Although focussed very heavily on user created content, LittleBigPlanet includes a story mode that spans the globe. Each themed area (The Savannah, The Temples, The Islands, The Canyons, The Wedding, The Wilderness and more) consists of a handful of levels which when completed open up the next in the story. Collect keys to open secret challenge levels and return to each to level in order to set a new high score (orbs collected earn you points) or to collect the many hidden items.

As in many platformers there are items scattered about the levels, but here they're not used to give your character new abilities or temporary enhancements, but simply added to your box of goodies. A menu, called popit, holds the secret to LittleBigPlanet's uniqueness. Bring this up and a new world of console gaming is unleashed. During the story mode you're simply able to stamp the world with stickers (often to release hidden items) and customise your sackboy, but everything you collect can be used in the level creation tool - something we'll get to a little later.

The game is jammed full with creativity

The game is jammed full with creativity

Compared to the very best 2D platformers (we're talking about Super Mario World and Yoshi's Island, and even the recently released Braid if you want a modern comparison) your sackboy's jumping doesn't feel quite as precise as you might want it to be. We found ourselves forever over doing jumps, slipping off ledges and generally getting into trouble at the hands of the controls. Added to this is the three-tier system the levels use, allowing sackboy to move in and out of the screen. For the most part this works almost seamlessly, with the game figuring out where you want to be, but at other times it can cause real problems, ending in annoying and occasionally infuriating death.

This is made all the worse by what can only be described as a terrible checkpoint system. Checkpoints are well positioned throughout the story mode levels, but the lives system (usually only three lives per checkpoint) can cause headaches. For the most part LittleBigPlanet isn't a hard game, which makes tricky sections something of a shock and a pain. We actually really liked the parts of the game that asked us to perform incredibly hard feats of platforming, but the game seemingly wanted us to hate it. Fail enough times and you'll run out of lives, forcing you to replay the whole level. Replaying levels isn't hard, with most being pretty easy to run through once you've seen them, but when you're having to do that over and over again because of one obscenely tricky jumping section (which isn't helped by the floaty jumping) it tests your patience to near breaking point.

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Anonymous

I haven't played it but from what I have seen it looks great. I plan to get it and mess around with the level creation although anything I make only I'll appreciate haha. It's nice to see a 2D game still able to compete.
Posted 12:00 on 04 March 2009
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Anonymous

little big planet is crap
Posted 14:31 on 19 February 2009
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mydeaddog

Yeah, I was just messing around. Sorry! Chess would clearly be a 10.

I totally see what you're saying, though, and I agree. The main body of a review is always more important than the number at the end, but unfortunately scores are something that people will always gravitate towards.
Posted 09:52 on 27 January 2009
CheekyLee's Avatar

CheekyLee

9 OUT OF 10? ARE YOU SERIOUS?

Hopefully, you got the point. Chess could only be a 10, and yet you somehow managed to conspire to rob it of a point. Someone else would give it a 5 for reasons of "It is too slow-paced.", and "You are stuck waiting for your opponent to move." (Though your post was quite lulzworthy!)
Posted 22:23 on 26 January 2009
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mydeaddog@ CheekyLee

Chess:

Pros:

- Huge levels of strategic depth.
- High replay value.
- Nice variety of pieces.
- Huge user community worldwide.
- Features horse-shaped pieces that move in an L-shape. Very unusual.
- Board is backwards-compatible with your old Draughts set.


Cons:

- Most sets do not come with a clock, which is more or less essential for serious play.
- The difficulty curve is very steep.
- There is no element of luck involved, which arguably reduces the fun since there is no real way that a master could ever lose to an inferior player.
- The black vs white theme is a bit racist (perhaps).

I give chess 9 out of 10.
Posted 16:07 on 26 January 2009
CheekyLee's Avatar

CheekyLee

This is why we should just dump scores from reviews altogether. They are simply meaningless. Here is a challenge for all of you :

Rate 'Chess' out of 10.

Instead of crying over the review score, try reading the review. It is completely fair, and the reviewer gave his reasons for marking it down. Whilst I personally would give the game a 10 as well, I can not argue with the complaint about jumping. Several times I died completely randomly because the game decided I was on a different plane than I actually wanted to be on. Or I got squashed by the scenery.

The major complaint I have is that the review was written before the game was played thoroughly. Stating that you couldn't play the levels co-operatively online means you have missed at least one facet of the games greatness. Perhaps it would be wise to replay some of the levels this way, in order to see what it adds to the game?
Posted 15:56 on 26 January 2009
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jackeruuu

omg! a 8! this should be a 10 for gameplay!!!
Posted 15:22 on 26 January 2009
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RORAN

MASS EFFECT 10/10 - Doesnt deserve it even one bit , more like 7.5 rater game

Bioshock - 10/10 - 9 is more than sufficient

HALO 3 - 10/10 - Yes it does

GoW2 - 10/10 - yes it does deserve too

But so do Mgs4 LBP n Fallout3 deserve 10
Posted 08:46 on 26 November 2008
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vapor0

i love little big planet. it should be atleast a 9.
Posted 04:00 on 26 November 2008
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Anonymous

An 8 for gameplay? I think its more like a 9 or 10. This gameplay is better than GTA or possibly a halo
Posted 14:41 on 27 October 2008
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STFU fanboys

this is nothing more than a dumbed down platformer for casuals, with a level editor.
Posted 22:20 on 26 October 2008
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georgatos

WTF... Gays Of War got 10!??! ROTFL!!

That was the shortest game I've ever played... no time to get used to controls and you reach the end.

LBP got a 8 in gameplay, because the reviewer can't push the jump button? Cool, you rocks, indeed.
Posted 02:14 on 25 October 2008
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Kunio

What a bunch of whining idiots.

I own a PS3, but even I wouldn't give this game a 10. It looks fun, but not anywhere near the "best platformer". The gameplay is NOT as deep or precise as games like Mario Galaxy, for instance. I suspect many of these acne-covered, cave-dwelling fanboys would probably be bitching that the same game didn't deserve a 9 if it came out for any system beside the PS3.
Posted 16:56 on 20 October 2008
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SteakPieHarry

Sony fanboys? Give it up - you're embarrassing yourselves. The review is fair. This is one of the best review sites going. So take yourselves and your childish conspiracy theories elsewhere. You're making me ashamed to be a gamer.
Posted 15:42 on 17 October 2008
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RecoN

Here you go guys, go here for a REAL reveiw and whe i say that i mean gamers! (not journalists)

http://www.play.com/Games/PlayStatio...s.html?cpage=4
Posted 11:19 on 17 October 2008

Game Stats

LittleBigPlanet
9
Out of 10
LittleBigPlanet
  • Creative freedom
  • Endless potential
  • Superb art design
  • Jumping doesn't feel spot on
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 24/10/2008
Platforms: PS3 , PSP
Developer: Media Molecule
Publisher: Sony
Genre: Platformer
No. Players: 1-4
Rating: PEGI 7+
Site Rank: 939 6
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