Little Big Planet

A creative outlet for the game-playing generation.
Ryan Gutowski - Guest Reviewer
Content at a glance:

Bathroom Humor: Burp and fart noises can be added to user-created levels.

Cartoon Violence: Toy-like characters die in a variety of slapstick ways such as electrocution, drowning, or being burnt before simply disintegrating.

Being a parent, it is sometimes tough to find a video game that is fun and exciting to my twenty-something year old mind, while entertaining to my wife and kids. Fortunately Media Molecule has created one of the most unique and innovative games I have played in years. While this game can look like a simple platform game, it is so much deeper than you can ever imagine. Riding the line from fun to addictive, Little Big Planet is the best game to come out of 2008.

Little Big Planet

When you first get into Little Big Planet, you take control of a character called Sackboy (or Sackgirl). This is the cute and funny plush creature that is on the front of the box. Throughout the game, you take your Sack Person through lots of levels that spark the imagination and tell a very loose but fun story. The point of the levels is to solve a situation or retrieve something for a character. You easily feel like they are mini adventures where you are trying to unlock and find new items.

Whether you are exploring the plains of Africa, or traveling through an urban car shop, there are tons of items to find and collect. As you collect the items, you get new clothing or accessories for your Sack Person. You also find objects and materials to build your own levels (more on that in a minute).

The game plays like a run and jump platformer that throws in the occasional puzzle that gets your mind working. Probably the most fun thing is that up to 4 people can run through these levels together. Having friends and family over to play has been a blast over the couple of weeks I have had the game. There is so much to do in the levels that I find myself going back with friends, which really adds to the replay value.

Little Big Planet

For the creative side of us all, there are modes called “Create” and “Share”. In Create mode you can basically make anything you can imagine. On my first couple of tries, I came up with a fun 2 vs. 2 football game, and I am 25% through building a full level. Because it is all Physics-based, sometimes it can be frustrating to see an idea fall apart because something is too heavy or not stable. The real reward is when something works like you want. Think of this mode as the Legos of Video Games.

The Share mode is where you can find all the amazing things that other people have come up with. It is crazy to see some of the inventions people have made just in a short time. Playing these user created levels and games really gives the sense that this game will easily keep your interest throughout 2009.

No review can come without a couple issues, so here they are. Some levels are really tough and young gamers may get frustrated later in the game, but overall anyone playing games on a regular basis should be fine. The learning curve really only comes from creating things with Little Big Planet. They require you to watch over a dozen tutorials, and then sometimes it comes down to trial and error when building.

The game has been a welcome addition to our family’s entertainment. It really brings out the creativity I love expressing. It’s fun to play by myself, with my wife, and with a living room full of friends; and of course, it makes me smile every time my 3 and 5 year-olds ask, “Daddy can you dress Sackboy like a Zebra again?”

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this Spotlight review are those of the reviewer (both ratings and recommendations), and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Eden Communications or the Christian Answers Network.

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