LittleBigPlanet 3 Preview
Sackboy is just the cutest little mascot out there. Yeah, I’d say even cuter than any of the Nintendo mascots. Maybe it’s because he’s more of a blank slate, in that he’s much more customizable than any of the set-in-stone cutesy protagonists. Above all else, though, this happy-go-lucky adventurer is always part of some of the most creative, innovative, and imaginative worlds in gaming history. So, when LittleBigPlanet 3 launches this holiday season, it should once again impress.
This time, our friend will be joined by three new buddies: OddSock, Swoop, and Toggle. Each of these characters will be playable, and each will be just as customizable as Sackboy. Furthermore, they bring a fresh dynamic to the standard platforming gameplay mechanics, because each character has a unique ability. For instance, OddSock can use his agility to scale walls, while Swoop can actually fly! Then there’s Toggle, who can transform between Big Toggle – a strongman that can lift heavy stuff – and Little Toggle, who is so speedy he can zip right across water.
These characters will greatly expand the possibilities in Create Mode, too, which is always catnip for all the digital artists and aspiring designers out there. Sackboy has received an upgrade, as well: He’s got an all-new climbing ability (although presumably, different from OddSock’s) and he’ll take advantage of all sorts of new power-ups. One of them is called the Pumpinator and the name alone is enough to make one grin. Players will have to combine the powers and skills of all four major characters to conquer the increasingly complex and intricate levels, as the Imagisphere is full of crazy obstacles.
From the mysterious planet Bunkum to the villain Newton who apparently hates creativity, you will adopt the noble quest of ensuring the spread of wholesome imagination. The developers are adding more depth to both the overall design and the gameplay. This includes Sackboy and Co. jumping into and out of the screen at will, along with zip-lines, slides, stairs and more! Times have changed since the original LBP, which was straightforward and even relatively simple when compared to the advances we’ve seen since. This is more than a platformer; more than a puzzler; more than a co-op adventure game. It’s all three, and each entry never fails to entertain.
Don’t forget that every last level the LBP community has created thus far will be accessible in the third entry. Yeah, that’s over 8.5 million levels, which will be immediately available on day one. That enough content for you? Also, you will undoubtedly appreciate the beautiful 1080p graphics and innovative support for the DualShock 4 controller. The Share button is something that you’ll likely use quite a bit, as you’ll want to show off your creation prowess. And by the way, when you settle down to build your own level, it can now be a lot bigger thanks to 16 playable layers.
Touch Create is another new feature that takes advantage of the controller’s touchpad, and we can look forward to 70 new tools, 29 enhanced tools from the first two entries, and 10 tools from the Vita iteration. All told, you’ll have access to a whopping 250 Create Tools, and you can even stream gameplay and produce trailers all by yourself. Is it a game or a training regiment for future developers? Well, it’s both. And it’s tons o’ fun besides. LittleBigPlanet 3 is scheduled to arrive for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 on November 18. If you know you want it, check out the pre-order bonuses.
8/15/2014 Ben Dutka