PS3 Review: LittleBigPlanet 2

Should you return to LittleBigPlanet for a second time?

The original LittleBigPlanet was a fantastic game, full of tools that allowed you to create your own platforming levels with the thousands of items you find through the main game, and then share them with people online to test out. Of course, there were a few problems when some players’ replicated levels of certain games like Super Mario Bros before they were deleted from the LBP servers. Despite this and a few issues with the way SackBoy handles, it was a breakthrough game…but can Media Molecule strike gold twice?

The story of LBP2 is quite simple; SackBoy comes under attack from a giant inter-dimensional vacuum cleaner and is sucked into Craftworld. With the help of Larry Da Vinci, head of the ‘Alliance’, you must find a way to defeat ‘The Negativitron”. It may be simple, but it’s definitely more of an engaging plot than in the first game. Of course, this time things are more advanced since LBP2 adds shooting, racing and even light RPG elements into the mix along with the traditional platforming.

Despite these changes, the game still feels very familiar and that’s both a good and bad thing. The good thing is that you’ll know what to do if you’ve played the first game, but those new to the fray will be overwhelmed with the tools given to them. The platforming element is still the strongest part of LBP2 and sadly, the other mechanics aren’t as strong as they should be…they aren’t bad, but the game may have been a bit stronger without them.

You can tackle the story and created levels with other players online and some areas in the story can only be reached with teamwork. Already there are thousands of levels ready to try, although some of them are made just for gaining multiple trophies in a single sitting. Luckily though you can filter these out if you choose to, that is. You’ll also come across boss battles that you need to beat with limited lives through the story mode, which makes a change.

As with the original game, there are thousands of items to collect that you can use to create your own levels and design your own SackBoy or SackThing as it’s called in the sequel. It does many things right, although the game does suffer from the same problems as the first LittleBigPlanet in terms of control. Jumping still feels very odd and using the tools to create levels will take some getting used to, especially some newcomers to the franchise. Luckily you’ll have the voice o the legendary Stephen Fry to take you through the ins and outs of the game before you begin to get stuck.

LBP2 looks roughly the same as it did before, but brighter and prettier with the new tools at your disposal. You can also use the old content in the sequel for those worried about backwards compatibility between the two games. Music is a mixed bag, but overall decent and the voice-acting, although minimal is impressive.

The Verdict

LittleBigPlanet 2 is a decent game, but the additions to gameplay don’t work as well as I had hoped they would. The game also suffers from the same issues as the first game, but despite this it’s still a worthy sequel and one that I would recommend to any PS3 owner with a creative edge.