Lost Planet is a game we've all played a fair bit of here at VideoGamer.com. Despite its annoying problems, the Xbox 360 game sports brilliant visuals and some rock-hard old-skool gameplay that make it well worth owning, especially if you have a soft spot for giant bugs. PS3 owners have had to wait a long time for their chance to play in the snow, but has it been worth it? Read on for our verdict on which console version of Lost Planet is the one to buy. Alternatively, head directly to our head to head video comparison or straight to our comparison screenshots.
Lost Planet arrived on the Xbox 360 early in 2007 but it still stands as one of the system's best looking games. The snow-covered levels look gorgeous, the giant bugs are incredibly detailed and the next-gen effects (such as the awesome looking motion blur) add a CG movie-like quality to proceedings. All this visual splendour didn't come at a cost to the frame rate either, with the game running at a brisk pace for the most part. On the PS3 things aren't nearly as pretty, mainly down to the sluggish frame rate that plagues almost every moment of the game. During certain boss fights it gets so bad that it actually has a negative effect on gameplay too. Motion blur also seems to be worse in the PlayStation 3 game, which has a drastic effect on the movie-like appearance of the game.
While recent multi-format releases have been pretty much neck and neck in terms of visual quality, Lost Planet is far prettier on the Xbox 360. In still shots the differences aren't completely obvious, but in motion the sluggish frame rate in the PS3 version and the differences in motion blur are clear to see. It's an easy victory for the Xbox 360 game.
You can see a direct comparison of the two games running side by side in our Lost Planet Xbox 360 Vs PlayStation 3 video. PS3 footage was taken from the final retail game over HDMI with RGB Full and Superwhite set to On. The Xbox 360 footage was taken from the final retail game over Component with the Reference level set to Expanded. The intention is the show the difference in frame rate between the two games.
Onto page 2 for a sound comparison.
Lost Planet features some pretty cheesy voice acting that's fairly typical of Capcom games, but the soundtrack and surround sound effects are excellent and well worth experiencing in a decent home theatre. Given that Lost Planet is a story-driven action game with a musical score tailored to the on-screen action the Xbox 360's built in custom sound track support isn't really needed. We were unable to detect any differences in audio quality between the two versions.
This one's a dead heat. Unless you know that you're going to be annoyed by the soundtrack on offer in Lost Planet, the version you buy isn't going to matter. Both games sound nigh-on identical to our ears.
Onto page 3 for a gameplay comparison.
Both versions of Lost Planet feature the same control set-up, so you're unlikely to have issues with one over the other. The big difference comes from the lack of rumble in the PlayStation 3 version. Although we'll be able to experience this when Sony releases the Dual Shock 3 controller in Europe, for the time being you're going to have to do without unless you import. Although also falling under the graphics section, the frame rate issues in the PS3 game do hamper gameplay when things get really choppy.
Although both versions play the same on the face of it, the Xbox 360 game wins out on rumble support for everyone and a smoother gameplay experience. It's not often that inferior visuals hurt gameplay, but in this case the problem is too severe to ignore.
Onto page 4 for a multiplayer comparison and the final verdict.
Again, on the face of it the PS3 game should win this category hands down. Whereas the Xbox 360 game requires you to buy the extra content for the multiplayer game modes, the PS3 game includes it all on one disc. Sadly the frame rate comes into play once again, making online matches a choppy mess a lot of the time. Of course, the PS3 game is playable online for no cost. Voice support is included in the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 version, although every game we played on the PS3 was bathed in silence.
While the PlayStation 3 game features more multiplayer content on the disc and can be played online at no cost, you just won't want to play it online if the Xbox 360 version is an option. The vastly superior frame rate makes online matches far more enjoyable. It's early days, but the 360 game also has more people playing online so it's currently easier to find matches with that version too.
It's good news for Xbox 360 gamers but bad news once again for PS3 fans. Lost Planet is simply a better game on Microsoft's console and by quite a considerable margin. The frame rate problems in the PlayStation 3 game are at times beyond cosmetic and as a result the game feels unfinished. If you're yet to tackle the giant beasts on the frozen wastelands in Capcom's next-gen blockbuster, we'd advise you choose the Xbox 360 version.
Read on for a series of comparison shots of the two versions side by side.
For more on Lost Planet for PlayStation 3 head over to our review.