Saturday, January 7, 2012

LittleBigPlanet: A World of Dreams, or Nightmares?

Happy New Year everyone!  Sorry for the bit of a hiatus, I ended up getting a bit lazy around Christmas-time, I didn't even write the "Merry Christmas" post I was planning, which was going to include this video for all my fellow Team Fortress 2 players:

I hope everyone had a good Christmas and New Years!  Now I figure it's time I get back to a semi-regular posting schedule.  Today I wanted to talk about LittleBigPlanet, a game which I have been playing quite a bit lately.  The opening narration states that the world of LittleBigPlanet is composed of the dreams of countless players, but I feel that it is composed of something more dark and disturbing than a simple happy dream.  Looking at some aspects of this game, it appears to be more along the lines of hallucinations of an asylum full of deranged lunatics.

First of all, what is Sackboy (the main character of LittleBigPlanet, for all you PS3 haters out there) supposed to be?

Is he a Beanie Baby who had a horrible accident?  He sort of reminds me of Sally from the Nightmare Before Christmas.  I think it's pretty well known that dolls coming to life are some of the creepiest things known to mankind, yet this cloth Frankenstein was still chosen to be the protagonist of LittleBigPlanet.  The fear has been dampened due to the fact that we have direct control over Sackboy, but others might feel revulsion when playing as this abomination.

Another weird feature of LittleBigPlanet is the group of levels that are each a mix of a haunted house, a graveyard, and a wedding reception (not joking).  Upon arriving in this part of the planet, you are immediately introduced to a gigantic talking zombie/skeleton/bride, prompting you to again wonder whether some game developers should seek psychiatric help.

The levels are admittedly awesome, filled with dark passages, giant skeletons, and skull platforms that shriek and drop their jaws as you approach them.

But it's the bride and groom characters that steal the show, because of the giant zombie bride's level-destroying mood swings, and the tiny zombie groom's creepy belch-voice.  Come to think of it, most characters in this game are pretty damn creepy.  The art style, mixed with the fact that the characters all tower over Sackboy add a sense of surreality.

For all its strangeness, and especially because of its strangeness, I highly recommend you check this game out if you haven't already.  The art style and gameplay are very unique and lots of fun, every level is custom made to the designer's vision (before you start a level it states the name of the person who built it).  This is worth mentioning, because just about every single device (such as the skull platforms mentioned earlier) can be unlocked for you to use in your own custom built levels.  In theory you could build clones of the same exact levels that you experience in the story mode. 
Until next time!


  1. Omg, I love LBP especially in multi-player mode!

  2. It definitely is a lot of fun with co-op! I just recently discovered that LBP has local multiplayer, for the past several months I thought multiplayer was online only for some reason, maybe because of the huge "Play Online!" button whenever you start a level haha.

  3. This is a title I would have eaten up when I was younger, but have only barely played - though my youngest is absolutely in love with it. Good post!

  4. Thanks! I know exactly what you mean, I feel like I was more willing to spend a lot of time with level editors when I was a kid. The freedom LBP gives you to create levels is incredible, I just have to muster up some motivation to build something!

  5. That's me exactly. I always liked 'making' stuff with games. It's why I started to program in BASIC a million years ago, so I could create some pretty crude choose-your-own-adventure like text games. I still fiddle around with some game creation stuff (I run a MUD w/ my wife and sometimes dust off RPG Maker), but I still haven't given LBP's level editor a fair shake - where as my youngest sinks a ton of time into it (even more so now that I got her LBP2 for her birthday last week).

  6. Man, coding in BASIC sounds pretty painful. I don't have much experience with it, but I did write an interpreter for a subset of BASIC using the Scheme programming language in college. Good to hear you fire up RPG Maker every once in a while, I tried using it a while back and enjoyed the interface a lot but I had a motivation problem again haha.
    It's amazing what you can actually build with LBP, when you get a chance check out the calculator this guy made using hundreds of components: