Published on September 25th, 2014 | by Genevieve Mc Bride0
Little Big Planet 3 Makes You Play Well with Others: Hand On Preview
I fell in love with Sackboy after my first hands-on of Little Big Planet (LBP) at the 2008 Penny Arcade Expo (PAX). Those who know me know I spend almost as much time designing a character as I do playing the actual game. I’m the one who collects all the coins (or in this case, bubbles) and I love exploring worlds to find the secret areas. As gaming is an escape, collecting all the points and prizes, kept me in Sackboy’s world that much longer. LBP, and its succeeding incarnations, puts a strong emphasis on user-generated content and encouraged players, with its tagline, to “play, create and share” making gameplay an immersive personal experience while incorporating a social aspect.
With LBP3, there’s an even greater social aspect as Sackboy now has new friends: Oddsock, Swoop and Toggle. Oddsock is a dog-like creature that can jump over walls. Swoop is a flying character who can pick up objects or other players while Toggle’s another two-legged lump of a character who can switch between heavyweight and lightweight version to help Sackboy trigger platforms and pressure plates.
With all four characters playing, cooperative play is essential. At PAX 2014 I played a couple of levels with 3 other attendees with a Sony representative coaching us through our roles. “Sockboy, blow some air to move that. Swoop, pick up Toggle. Oddsock, jump up to that ledge. Toggle, go small and jump on that plate.” Although it had been a while since I last played LBP or LBP2, the controls came back like I had never stopped playing. Levels never feel long enough when it’s a seriously fun game, and that holds true with LBP3, especially with 3 others giddily playing along with you.
Those who love creating their own levels will only be limited by the size of their hard drive. I see some potential for ridiculously amazing creations with LBP3 giving users up to 16 layers, whereas previous versions limited users to 3 layers of depth. My nephew, who created multiple levels in LBP and LBP2 will be happy to know that LBP3 will let you play levels created in previous versions, and if you have a PlayStation4, it will automatically render those user-created levels at a higher 1080 resolution.
While I can see my husband and I having some arguments over this game (remember, I like to roam and gather, while he likes to level up as fast as possible), I look forward to its projected release in November. Co-op play will definitely challenge us to play better with each other.