Great platforming that is enhanced by the very fun multiplayer and amazing level editor.
LittleBigPlanet is a great platformer that brings together some absurd fun with some interesting platforming puzzles and good timing principles. In LittleBigPlanet you are a sack person, and as a sack person you have the power to dress in various clothes, change your sack colour, and paint the world with stickers. In the world you run about gathering bubbles for points and getting extra stickers and clothes for more adventures in different lands. The world has been created by Media Molecule and it contains themes from various basic settings. There are Mexican deserts, African savannas, Gardens and even a Cityscape. Although the missions have story like objectives you probably won’t be too concerned about what they are. Each one of these themed levels, although artistically exaggerated, becomes part of a much larger world. A world in which the players can join together to complete objectives or if they like create their own corner of the world for other gamers to visit.
Indeed LittleBigPlanet’s biggest component is naturally the platforming elements. As you move along the level you collect bubbles for points but also larger bubbles for stickers, objects, clothes and decorations. The game is a side scroller in a 3D world, but your sack boy (or girl) can move 3 levels deep into this side scrolling world allowing some 3D movement. This enables levels to have various overlapping steps or slopes to jump over and dodge objects to that may be dangerous.
Thankfully the game is smart enough to assume you wanted to land on a certain ledge even if you are actually jumping from the background. There are spongy type materials you can grab hold of to either swing across the level or maybe revolve around spinning objects propelling you into the air. The game speed is fairly fast but you can hang back and try out small hard to access areas where many goodies might be located. As you progress through levels save points will restore your lives back to three. When you get squashed by a large object, fall into fire or explode into pieces you will return to these save locations staggered along the world. In general the actual progress is very simple; there are relatively few hard sections. In fact many of the deaths may simply come from you trying to get these obscure bubbles for extra points, more objects or even keys to unlock challenges.
Not all the game is overly simplistic; there are a few difficult sections. These difficult sections may require you to learn a new skill quickly or more than likely time your moves extremely well. In some cases the designers knew these sections were hard and they have simply doubled the number of lives at the save point. Unfortunately it doesn’t do much to offset the inconsistent difficulty level. When you do lose all your lives you will need to restart the whole level even if your previous efforts were flawless. The game only takes into consideration your efforts from the last save point ignoring everything else. I would not class LittleBigPlanet as a hard game, the bulk of the levels are simple and generous in terms of save checkpoints. Because there is some conservation of momentum, moving objects can prove a little trickier to deal with. New puzzle ideas early on are demonstrated well enough with leniency to start with. Many of the introductions of a new sequence, a vehicle, a springboard or spinning wheels is usually cause for enjoyment. This goes along with the majority of upbeat fun style music, especially the theme used in the first few levels.
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