'LittleBigPlanet 3' Is Sackboy's Next Great Adventure
December 2, 2014
Sackboy originally platformed his way into the hearts of Sony fans way back in 2008, and since then he's gone on a host of adorable adventures on PlayStation platforms. Over the course of the last six years, our little, burlapy protagonist has run, jumped, played, created, and shared his way across the PlayStation 3, PSP, PS Vita, and mobile devices in a wide assortment of LittleBigPlanet games - from the original, to Prehistoric Moves, to LittleBigPlanet Karting, to Run Sackboy! Run!. It's finally come time for Sackboy to make his debut on the PlayStation 4 in LittleBigPlanet 3, but this time he has to share some of the spotlight. LBP 3 is the first game in the series to introduce new, playable characters, making this journey one of Sackboy's most intriguing outings.
Developer: Sumo Digital
LittleBigPlanet has come a long way since being originally conceived by the creative minds at Media Molecule, the team who helped cement the "Play, Create, Share" philosophy for the series. LittleBigPlanet 3 is the first major console release without Media Molecule at the helm, but it isn't the first time another developer has picked up the mantle. Stepping in for them this time is Sumo Digital, a team that has dabbled in the LittleBigPlanet universe before, working on 2012's Cross-Controller Pack (DLC that lets you use the PS Vita as a game controller, and came with its own set of levels). While that may not sound like a wealth of experience to handle such a beloved series, they have been making games since 2004, and have worked on some major franchises, like Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing, and Dead Space. Whether you're familiar with their work or not, rest assured that Sony would never let them release a game that didn’t live up to the LittleBigPlanet reputation.
In LittleBigPlanet 3, Sackboy is, once again, pulled in to help out a stranger in need. This time around, Sackboy finds himself on a new planet, Bunkum, where he has to assist Newton, after releasing three evil titans into the world, who are set on destroying everything. However, LBP 3 gives Sackboy some new toys to play with, and friends to help him solve puzzles to set the world of Bunkum right. The new members of Sackboy's team include Oddsock, a dog-like creature that can wall jump, Swoop, think flying Sackboy, and Toggle, a shape shifter that can be big or small, depending on what the puzzle needs. These new characters open up a whole new set of gameplay possibilities, and bring a lot of new potential to one of LittleBigPlanet's most important features, user-created levels.
While the stories in LittleBigPlanet games are always fun to play through, that part of the game is really just a means to collect things to use in the user-created levels. In this regard, LBP 3 is no different than its predecessors, but this release goes much, much further. Not only does LBP 3 give you new creation tools, and up to 16 layers of depth to create your monstrosities, but you can even create your own characters. Much like the other games, you can then share your creations with the entire LittleBigPlanet community, and see what the world thinks of your work. As a huge added bonus, user-created levels from past LBP games are compatible, and downloadable in LBP 3, so you will never, ever run out of things to play in this game. Past DLC is also compatible with this release, so it's time to dust off that old Kratos costume for Sackboy again.
This PlayStation exclusive can be enjoyed on either your PlayStation 4 or PlayStation 3... one of them is going to look better than the other. You figure it out. Hint: it's the one that takes advantage of the touch pad on the controller.
When you boil it down, LittleBigPlanet 3 is really just more LittleBigPlanet, but it's also better. Putting aside the length of the story mode (it’s really short), everything else about LBP 3 is bigger and better than the other games in the franchise. The gameplay has matured to include Sackboy’s new "weapons" and crew of sack folk, making the overall experience feel notably different from the other games. However, it's the growth in the user generated part of the game that really helps set this release apart. The added development layers, fresh tools, and even the updated tutorial all come together to help make this the definitive LBP creative experience.