Review by Zylo the wolf
I guess about 100 new levels was uploaded while I wrote this review, making it the never ending game....
Even if Street Fighter 4 was the real reason why I thought that I had to give this generation of games a chance, there was this little game that also caught my attention way back in October 2008. The game got a lot of hype everywhere, but it still seemed like a game that nobody would really talk about. Then it got released and it got a lot of game of the year awards, so I knew that if I would ever buy a Playstation 3, then I had to get that game. So when I found a nice offer in my local game store, I asked them if I could get Little Big Planet with the system instead of Killzone 2, and I've never regret that.
So what is LittleBigPlanet? A simple way to quickly describe the game is to say that it's a platformer just like the old classic Super Mario Bros. But that wouldn't explain at all why the game became such a huge hit at all. It's true that we have seen a platform hero before that only has to reach a goal in a couple of stages and then fight a boss, and so far LittleBigPlanet is not that different. Our hero Sackboy can also pick up a lot of different powerups and grab pretty much everything on the stage, and yes we have also seen this many times before.
Obviously the developers Media Molecule already knew what made good platform games good, but they got the brilliant idea that not only create about 20 excellent stages and then, when the player thought that the game was over, say that this is just the beginning and add an excellent map maker in the game to allow the player to try to do even better and be more creative than what the developers were. Now that the game has been out for almost 4 years, and there are over 6 million different levels online, I think it's safe to assume that the fans took this challenge and delivered more than I think anyone expected.
But lets start to talk a bit of the off-line mode, or story mode if you prefer to call it that. Believe it or not, this game actually has a plot, but it's nothing that I think even 10% of everyone who played the game remembers. Sackboy has to travel through different worlds to collect as much stuff as possible and then share it with others. While he's on his journey, he learns that there's an evil collecter who refuses to share everything he have found with the others. Yeah I told you that this plot was very thin, but did anyone really expect the plot to be deep in a game like this one?
The most important thing of all is of course to make sure that your Sackboy both look unique and also really cool. You don't want to look like a nobody when you play with your friends or complete strangers right, so make sure that you grab as many clothes as you can. You can be anything from a mexican with a big hat and an even bigger moustache, or maybe you want him to look more like a zombie? Or why not take it one step further and turn your Sackboy into a mexican who has turned into a zombie, and just for a fun touch, give him a frying pan to hold in one of his hands? No matter what your taste is, I'm sure you will find something.
So why should you play through the main quest at all if you can just go online and play through user made stages instead? Well first of all you almost have to play through the tutorial stages to understand how everything works, even if it's really simple when you get it. Another thing is that even Media Module wants you to be creative, they also showed in this title that they can also be creative. You never really knew what to expect when you begin a new stage. Maybe you arrive in a big air balloon, but that doesn't mean that you won't find a jet pack later in the stage, or maybe you will find a paintball gun which you can use to kill the enemies with? Sometimes you have a time limit to get through one part of a stage and then you have to make sure that you don't die to many times.
So after that you have played a couple of stages you might want to try to create a own stage? Well believe it or not but the Map Maker in this game is actually pretty easy to figure out how to handle if you don't want to make it to complicated, but personally I'm not that interested in making stages since no off my friends got LittleBigPlanet, and it takes a lot to make your stage stand out considering how many stages that are already playable online.
Thankfully there are over 6 million different stages online to try, so obviously you have no chance to try them all. Then again a lot of them are pretty bland and almost feel unfinished while some are just made to give the creator a couple of trophy. Of course there are also many stages that were made to give the players free trophies, so try to find a couple of these if you are a trophy hunter. But everyone who has this game should google "LittleBigPlanet stages that you must try" and find that there are a lot of creative players out there who should amaze you. How does for example a LittleBigPlanet version of the nes classic Contra sound?
Now sadly there are a couple of things that I have to complain with this game that really brings the score down. The first one is that Sackboy, is a bit to weak. Sure there are many checkpoints on every stage where he respawn to if he dies, but every solid platform needs to be able to take at least one hit before he dies. This wouldn't be a hard thing to fix, since they could just add a power up that allowed Sack Boy to get hit once. Another thing is why they decided to make this game in 2.5D. Each stage is divided in three layers and there are many places where you quickly have to jump from one layer to another, and it doesn't always look that logical which layer you are supposed to be on.
The main thing however that brings down the score for this game is the control when you jump. If Sackboy was supposed to became just as a big icon as Mario or Sonic, then why can't he jump as high as them? There are many times where I felt that he should've been able to jump higher and that I had to jump just right of the edge of the platform to reach the other platform. I know I'm harsh here, but jumping is a huge part in this game, and therefore I want perfection if I'm going to give this game a real high score.
Even so LittleBigPlanet is a Playstation 3 classic. When other games might get old, there are always new stuff uploaded to the huge database online. I'm sure that we haven't even seen yet what the fans are truly capable in this game. It's a game that I can say that it's for everyone, even if it looks silly for some players. Try it and you won't regret it.
Rating: 4.0 - Great
Product Release: LittleBigPlanet (EU, 11/05/08)
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