Published on January 12th, 2011 | by Kyle Spencer, Editor
Little Big Planet 2: Review
Little Big Planet 2
Release Date: January 18, 2011
ESRB Rating: E
Developer: Media Molecule
Genre: Adventure / Platformer
Media Molecule has done it again. Many second efforts of games these days do not fair as well as the first, which is very similar to movie releases. Sequels have a hard time living up to the success of the original, but, in the case of LittleBigPlanet, the second one was a chance to fix what went wrong with the first. Don’t get me wrong, the first one was an excellent release but it just seemed to not capture the audience that they were targeting. This time around they really fixed the community tools, and upgraded the platforming for the better. LBP2 has over 30 levels of platforming brilliance. The story line is simple, and progresses like a nursery rhyme. You play as Sackboy, who has to travel through parts of the globe to stop the evil Negativitron from eating the cities throughout the planet. Media Molecule has truly outdone themselves and made some major improvements from the original.
LBP2 is a classic 2D/3D adventure that takes Sackboy from one end of the screen to the other end of the screen. You earn points and special unlocks by popping point bubbles throughout each level. There is co-op this time around as you can play with up to 3 players locally or online. A few of the levels are even designed for co-op play. Much like LittleBigPlanet, each world feels unique and is a beautiful sight to look at. The folks over at Media Molecule really do know how to create brilliant, lavish and creative levels. I thought they did a fantastic job on the first game, but with this release I must say that they outdid themselves. Media Molecule has also made addition to playing through each level as well. Each level is packed with challenges that can be shared with others online. A friend of yours completes a level faster than you and a message will appear in your dashboard that you can use to beat their time on your playthrough. Keep in mind if you miss you can always go back and replay at any time.
The level creator in LBP2 is just what we wanted out of the first game. A more robust and user friendly interface made creating a level fun and brought the creative juices out of me. There is also a new Music Sequencer built into the level creator that can allow you to create your own tunes for your levels. The tutorials to creating your masterpieces are also easier to access. Just choose the option from the long list that has the tutorial videos listed in order for you. The creative tools are deep and leave many of us wondering what some people may come up with. We have seen a lot of obscene tag pictures in Black Ops, so when the public has access to the tools, LPB2 moderators are going to go crazy. All of the original levels (over 3 million and counting) from LittleBigPlanet will be playable in LPB2 and with the new way to search for levels, will be easy to access. Uploading a level to the internet is as easy as a click of a button. You name the level, and give it a logo and you are all set to go. You can rate other peoples levels when you’re done playing them with a Smiley face or Frown, and can leave comments that will then be uploaded to LBP.Me.
Sackboy has some new gadgets in this game to play with this time around that are fun to play with. Yes you have vehicles you can drive, grappling hooks (be sure to check out my Bionic Commando level I’m currently working on), and the GRABINATOR! With the grabinator you can create levels that can pit two sack boys against each other. We have all seen the basketball video from Sony that was created where sack boy and sack girl played a game of one on one. This is where the Vs. and co-op come into play with LPB2.
I was a little disappointed to see that the “move” controls do not work as advertised. The front of the display box clearly states Playstation Move Compatible. On the disc is a game that incorporates the Move called “Sackboy’s Prehistoric Moves”. The game itself does not use the feature at any point throughout the gameplay. I for one do not mind the Move controller at all when it is used right. In LBP2 it would have been a tacked on feature so the choice of not using the motion control was a wise decision.
The Final Truth:
LBP2 is an amazing way to start off 2011, especially in Sony’s favor. They have a long list of exclusive titles this year, and this being the first of that long list has us eager to what’s left this year. There seems to still be the lingering problem of the community that will make full utilization of the tools that this game has. Media Molecule have taken some giant steps forward in the right direction regarding the functionality of it’s online sharing. If you are one of those gamers that likes to play games and not so much creating you will like what this game has to offer. If you are a creative junkie, or just a curious gamer that wouldn’t mind creating a world or two LBP2 has a world of options for you and easy functionality.
+ Awesome Levels to play
+ LittleBigPlanet levels will transfer to LBP2
+ Simpler level creator
+ Uploading made easy
+ A whole lot of Re-playability
– Some of the level creating can become frustrating
-Playstation Move controls not completely implemented