Little Big Planet 2 has finally arrived and it appears that Media Molecule has another hit on their hands. From the very first moment that you play this game you will be amazed with everything that you can do. There is, of course, a main storyline for you to progress through, however, most people don’t play Little Big Planet for the story. It is all about the creation tool set with the Little Big Planet franchise being a cornerstone of Sony’s “Play. Create. Share.” ideology. The main storyline will take you a few hours to go through and what was most impressive is the variety of things that you have to do. I didn’t get bored once while playing it and Media Molecule should be applauded for that. When I was done with that I jumped into the community section and browsed some of the 3.5 million levels that are available. This is a game where no one will play every single level that is available and you will always have new content to explore and enjoy. If you don’t like any of the levels that you see then you can make your own and upload for the world to experience.
There really isn’t much of a story to Little Big Planet 2, however, as I said above, this isn’t a franchise that you play for the story. I was, however, impressed with the huge amount of variety that was offered within the main campaign. The levels themselves are absolutely fantastic. Each “world” feels completely different and it feels like a fresh experience every time. There were times when I was doing simple platforming where all I had to do was make it to the end of the stage. Then there were other times when I had to rescue “sackbots” and help them get to the place they needed to be. Then there were other times where something came completely out of left field, like the time where I was all of a sudden in a side scrolling shooter. There were even some parts that reminded me a bit of Sonic, although these sections were vastly superior to anything the Sonic franchise has produced in the last fifteen years. While going through the levels there are some things that you need to remember. First of all, Sackboy has three different planes to deal with. If you are going through the level and you come across an obstacle that you can’t get past then you can jump into either the middle or the background to try and bypass the object in your way. Additionally, as you go through these levels you will see a bunch of bubbles on the screen. You will want to try and get as many of these as you can. By doing this you will acquire new items such as new stickers to decorate the level with or new objects for when you are creating your own level(s).
It should go without saying that you need to get every one that you possibly can so that you have as much freedom as possible when you start implementing your own designs. If you get bored playing the game by yourself then you can play with up to three friends, both locally and online. Whenever I would select a level it would always ask me whether I wanted to play that level solo or whether I wanted to team up with someone. If you don’t want to make this decision every time you can check a box which will remember the decision that you make and it won’t ask you anymore. If you are in the middle of a level you might see a notification pop up asking you if someone can join your game. You can either allow them to or hit deny and continue uninterrupted through your game. In addition to going through the “normal” levels there are also special versus levels that you can play.
The online toolset in Little Big Planet 2 is amazing. Whether you are looking to simply download some new levels or create one yourself, Media Molecue has tried to make it as easy as possible. One feature that I really appreciated is the ability to queue your levels. With over 3.5 million community levels available this is an important feature. If building a level seems to be too daunting then you don’t have to worry about that either. There are a ton of tutorial videos at your disposal so any time you have a question or want to know how to do something you can always go and watch that video. My only real complaint with the online is that it takes too long to load community levels. The loading times aren’t as bad as ModNation Racers but it can get a bit annoying at times if all you want to do is quickly jump in a level and start playing. It seems to be hit and miss though. There were times where I would start the level really quickly and other times where I could have stood up and went to get a drink. Most of the levels are worth the wait though as I had a great time playing this Super Mario level on there where I had to save the princess and then another community level that was almost exactly like the game Limbo. If you happen to be away from your PlayStation 3 you can still keep the Sackboy fun going. By visiting the website lbp.me you can sign in to your PlayStation Network account and browse all of the community levels that are available to you. If you find one that you like you can add it to your queue and it will be ready for you to play the next time you boot up the game. The website will even allow you to distinguish between categories such as “trending,” “recently published,” “MmPicks” and more.
One of the great things about LittleBigPlanet 2 is that this is a title where you can truly control the experience you will have. If you are the creative type and you want to dive into all of the tools that are at your disposal, that will keep you busy for a long time. If you are the type of person that just wants to sit down and play and not mess with building anything then you can do that as well. Media Molecule has created the game in such a way that you can go can do as deep as you want or you can just sit and load up all of the community levels without ever opening the create tool yourself. It really is a fantastic achievement and other developers who hope to develop similar titles should be taking notes. The fact that Little Big Planet 2 is compatible with the first one also assures you that the community will jump right over to this newest iteration and start making even better levels with the new toolset that Little Big Planet 2 has to offer. Overall, if you own a PlayStation 3 system then you need to play this game. Media Molecule has shown a lot of love towards their community with this title and I have a feeling the community will reciprocate with some amazing concepts. What will you create?
Originally posted on Totally Gaming Network