Review – LittleBigPlanet PS Vita

By: Louis Edwards

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LittleBigPlanet PS Vita has been released upon the masses. Is it a worthy addition to the “Play, Create, Share” family?

Read on to find out.

 

LittleBigPlanet has been around for quite some time. The Sackboy series introduced us to a world where the game didn’t end when the story did. LittleBigPlanet introduced us to Sony’s world of “Play, Create, Share”. While playing through the story is fun and entertaining, it can also be thought of as a guide to what all you can create with the ingenious level creator/editor.

LittelBigPlanet’s Hero: Sackboy

LittleBigPlanet PS Vita brings with it a brand new story centered on the fairground planet of Carnivalia. The planet truly gives an overall carnival atmosphere, and the marionette world keeps you hopping. Sackboy finds himself on the trail of an evil villain that goes by the name The Puppeteer. With his evil army of Hollows, the Puppeteer is determined on taking down the multiverse and everyone in it. It is up to Sackboy, and the many colorful characters he meets along his journey, to stop this mad man and save the world once again. From Mrs. Sunshine, a depressed Mancunian clown, to underwhelming action hero Sean Brawn, the non-playable characters are entertaining and add quite a bit to the overall story.

Sean Brawn and our Hero

Storytelling has come a long way in the LBP series. In the beginning all you got was some simple text bubbles, and maybe a cut scene or two, and you were off. This time around you get quite a bit more, and a great story as well.The cut scenes are nicely done, and there’s quite a bit to see. The developers created a great story that will keep you busy, and maybe test your skills.

The greatest joy in the LittleBigPlanet world is that you never have to play alone. Even through the story friends can join you on your journey. When connected to the LittleBigWorld, whenever you select a level to play you’ll be asked if you want to join someone who may be playing through the level already. This is a great feature that can introduce you to others who are already playing online and are at the same part in the story as you. Connecting to others and meeting new people can make for a fun experience, but younger gamers might need to be supervised in this area.

Once you have completed the story, or at least played through a few levels, you can move on to the level creator/editor or you can check out the many levels already created by other gamers. If you don’t know where to start, head to the Community planet from your main pod and check out what others have done.

 

There were already 1199 levels awaiting us when we checked it out. One of the great things about the game being connected to the internet is its interactivity with its website at http://vita.lbp.me/. Logging in with your PSN ID on the site gives you the ability to see what others are saying about different levels, and you can have these levels added to your queue with the click of a mouse. Once added to your queue, you can then try them out by looking at the Community menu again and touching the My Queue item. Voila, there are the levels you were just reading about. Pretty nifty. If you see a level that you really like, you can download it to your Vita and it will be right there waiting for you anytime you want to play it.

You can also copy the level, and then re-edit it to change it however you wish. This is a great way to see what can be done with your editor, but the best way to learn how to use that editor/creator, is to jump right into the tutorials. With 67 tutorials in all, you can really get a head start on the ins and outs of creating with the Vita, and even LBP veterans might want to check them out as well. With front and rear touch sensors, as well as some nifty new game modes, there’s plenty for everyone in those tutorials.

Another awesome feature for the PS Vita version of LBP, all previous costumes and DLC will be compatible. This isn’t something that will be there right away, but the developer is going through all previous costumes and making them compatible. A developer replied to a question over on the PS Blog:

+ Simon Rosenkotter on September 3rd, 2012 at 10:53 am said:

Absolutely. All costumes you bought for LBP1 or LBP2 will work in LBP PS Vita.

Unfortunately, due to the sheer amount of costumes and the work that goes into making them compatible some costumes will not be available when the game launches. But we are doing our best to make them available as soon as possible.

As you progress through the story and finish each world, you’ll unlock fun and challenging side levels by finding keys. These introduce some new game play styles that are far different than the standard platforming that is LittleBigPlanet. One of our favorites made us feel nostalgic and reminded of us of our younger years. If you can remember Rock-em Sock-em Robots, you’ll probably enjoy Super Boxing.

 

This can be played online with a friend, or you can play it with someone sitting next to you by using the shared screen play option. One player uses the right analog stick and the standard PS buttons, while the other uses the left stick and d-pad. We also came across a shuffle board style game and an air hockey game that used the share screen feature.

The arcade features take LittleBigPlanet from a platform only audience, on to include those that like the mini-games available on your mobile app stores. These features give the PS Vita games that can also save your progress, and if they could sell them as stand alone games, they could make a pretty penny.

Starting next week, we here at Terminal Gamer are going to start highlighting one level per week that we found to be creative and challenging. If you have a level you think fits that description, email us your PSN name and the level’s name, and maybe we’ll agree. LittleBigFriday will kick off next week with one of our favorite levels found so far, and it’s a super challenging one. The name alone tells you it’s not for the faint of heart.

LittleBigPlanet has come a long ways since its first release. The “Play, Create, Share” originator made its mark on the gaming world and the PS Vita release carries the Sackboy torch proudly.

If you own a PS Vita, you must own LittleBigPlanet PS Vita. Period.

10

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