Skip to main content

LittleBigPlanet PS Vita - First Impressions

LittleBigPlanet for the PlayStation 3 was released during a time when Sony wonder system wasn't in the best place in terms of consumer sales. With all the investment Sony put into the PlayStation 3 there just wasn't really anything that showed up what the system was capable of. Yes, Uncharted in 2007 started to shift the PS3 into more positive light (simply by being fantastic), but one single game can't “save” a platform from failure.

Enter in Media Molecule's darling character Sackboy. A lovable, customizable character that can literally be whatever the player wants him/her to be. Whether you dress him or her up as a pre-made costume (which are readily available on the PlayStation Store) or you design your own to take advantage of the near limitless options for customization.

So adorable

*I for one have always been a fan/supporter of Phil Harrison (former President of Sony Worldwide Studios and now he has joined the Interactive Entertainment Division at rival Microsoft...still kinda stings a little), because he wanted to see developers innovate, wanted to see them not only have an economic plan for how a game could/will be successful, but also be passionate about doing something revolutionary, original, new, and ultimately fun. He green-lit LittleBigPlanet and threw PlayStation's first-party support behind it. I feel that fire is mostly gone from Sony these days. So much so that I feel the current batch of executives are grabbing the burnt out candles from the previous regime of people that were forced out (Phil Harrison, Ken Kutaragi, David Jaffe, Cory Barlog...but this topic is for another time).*

While my side rant should be saved for another time, it is the “embodiment” of what I feel from LittleBigPlanet PS Vita's Tarsier Studios developed story worlds. I'm having fun with it, it is more LBP and that is a good thing. However, it is more of the same. It's the same complaint I have with Mario games. It is amazing they have a true LBP experience on a handheld, it really is; sorry LittleBigPlanet weren't. Still I get the “I've done this before and in a slightly better package” vibe while playing the Vita installment of LBP. As it stands LBP 2 is the best in the franchise (it was the first game of this franchise to give the player the tools to make any genre they wanted to play)

LittleBigPlanet PS Vita carries that over...and it adds front and rear touch...So it isn't very groundbreaking. From what I've seen of this platform for gamers is that the user-generated content will be the saving grace. If it can build up a dedicated following that is...which it should; and I'm in no way, shape or form saying that LBP Vita is bad. It's just more of the same and the user generated content will be what really makes this stand apart as the potential ass-kicking version of LBP. I'm waiting to see full featured (UGC) of RPG's both J (Japanese) and W (Western) styles.

The story remains funny and clever in the dialog. The game plays great. I enjoy the “cut-scenes” that are scattered around the story worlds. Plus I feel the touch controls (no pun intended) aren't gimmicky or tacked on. So it is a great package, but from a franchise that revolutionized twice on PS3 I was just hoping for more of that type of “same vibe”. The Revolutionary type of same.

I will say that LittleBigPlanet PS Vita gets a solid recommendation from me just on the fact that it pulls off something that no other handheld has ever done before and that is give the player everything they could possibly want from a game. If you love LittleBigPlanet, buy this game. If you don't have a Vita, save up and buy the system with this game. If you have a Vita and LittleBigPlanet's platforming isn't want you're into, buy this game for the free User-Generated Levels/Stages/Stories/Co-Op Missions and more.

From a handheld point of view, it is like nothing else. As the fourth game in the franchise, I was expecting something revolutionary, but got an evolutionary experience. Either way, this has been an enjoyable experience.

(Scroll over to the far right to access the special Just1MoreLevel toolbar and subscribe to the site)