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LittleBigPlanet

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Ex-Sony PR: Sony's sending titles out to die


Laid-off worker cuts loose on former master
Sep 24
// Jim Sterling
Recently laid-off Sony PR man Will Powers has taken to Twitter to share some views on his former bosses, questioning the company's recent business decisions and suggesting that its big titles are being thrown to the wolves. I...
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LittleBigPlanet Vita breaks street date


Sep 17
// Chris Carter
LittleBigPlanet Vita was all set for a September 25th release date, but guess what? That crummy old street date has been broken, which means the release date is "whenever the hell you feel like buying it."But hold on peo...

Review: LittleBigPlanet PS Vita

Sep 12 // Jim Sterling
LittleBigPlanet PS Vita (PS Vita)Developer: Double Eleven, Tarsier Studios, XDevPublisher: Sony Computer EntertainmentReleased: September 25, 2012MSRP: $39.99 Fans of LittleBigPlanet will know the score right from the outset. Ostensibly a do-it-yourself platform game, the PS Vita version is exactly like its console brethren in allowing players to construct their own vast levels out of a huge selection of materials, gadgets, tools, and stickers. Very little has been left out, with LBP2's extra gimmicks and power-ups all in attendance, alongside a few all-new features. Everything you need to enjoy LittleBigPlanet has been maintained -- no small feat for a humble handheld title.  The full set of community features have been transported without flaw to Sony's little system. As always, players can search for, play, review, rate and favorite all the user-created levels uploaded by others. At the time of writing, only a few test levels from fellow reviewers are uploaded, but I can confirm that getting into them is fairly quick and simple. There can be some lengthy loading at times, but nothing too egregious, save for one or two instances where a level seems to be stuck in a perpetual load. My one big complaint is that the menus could use some cleaning up, as trying to find my user reviews feels more convoluted than it needs to be, and the icons aren't exactly helpful in telling you which selection does what. [embed]234613:44997[/embed] The game's campaign tells a predictably trite story about an evil puppeteer attacking a magic carnival planet. The cutscenes and voice acting grate, and the levels are little more than glorified -- but nicely designed -- tutorials, telling you how the game's new toys work. In that latter purpose, the campaign is a success, as there are quite a few fresh playthings that manage to be surprisingly fun.  Among of the biggest new items are the touch-activated materials. Fingerprint scanners and blocks that can be manually moved by dragging across the touchscreen add some new interactions to a level, and I'm surprised by how well they work. Unlike other PS Vita games, the touch controls don't feel overly saturated and work to make the gameplay more interesting, rather than less convenient for the sake of showing off. There are some cleverly designed levels using blocks that can be pushed in and out using the front and rear touch interfaces, and I'm excited to see what more talented gamers can create using them.  New power-ups make similar use of the PS Vita's control range, from gliders that can be dragged with touch to vehicular wheels propelled by physically tilting the system. These items vary in terms of quality and entertainment. Dragging an unwieldy vehicle around with one's finger is just uncomfortable and bothersome, but I've always got time for a good tilt mechanic, and LittleBigPlanet uses this functionality elegantly.  The game wisely ensures that it doesn't always force you to use touch controls. The Popit menu, as well as level building, can be interacted with using either touch or buttons, and I've actually found that using a combination of both options makes building levels more fluid and enjoyable than ever before. LittleBigPlanet Vita thus serves as a fantastic example of Vita controls done right -- a working compromise between two well-executed control methods, as opposed to a forced either/or situation that promotes technology over user enjoyment.  One thing I really love about the Vita is that the microphone and camera are built in, allowing you to instantly add your own images and sounds to the levels you create without the need for peripherals. The quality is predictably spotty, but the accessibility is appreciated. Being able to scream at my handheld and having such eldritch sounds transported instantly to whatever vile beast I've built out of ivory and jam is a source of infinite amusement.  It's not just the controls, though -- the entire handheld format delivers an overall better crafting experience. The more casual nature of a portable device makes dipping in and out to tweak and build feel more relaxed and enjoyable, the ability to bring my work anywhere encouraging me to take more time on it. Sitting in front of an HDTV with speakers blaring just to spend an hour shaping a block of wood feels silly. On the PS Vita, it feels soothing. It's the kind of activity one should be doing on the train, or in a queue at the bank. Having LittleBigPlanet on the PS Vita works so well in the game's favor that I wish it had always been on the portable format.  The bite-sized nature of the playable levels also work better on the PS Vita than the PS3. The game's physics are still a bit too floaty for my liking, but overall, the Vita's controls just seem like a much better fit. That said, I'd have preferred at least a few improvements and tighter mechanics overall. As with other games in the series, LBP Vita does nothing of its own to improve the series in any way, choosing instead to just toss more toys at the player while sticking rigidly to formula. It may be in a better package this time around, but the contents remain mostly the same. That's mostly fine, but there are gameplay mechanics that could definitely be better, and haven't been touched since the series' inception. I've also found a rather annoying bug with create mode. After a while of building any moderately sized level, the game seems unable to cope with it and will crash out, returning the player back to the Vita's home screen. I noticed this mostly happening when transitioning from building a level to playtesting it. Getting back into the game is quick, and if one saves before the transition (which is always prompted), nothing of value is lost. It is, however, a frequent annoying occurrence and one that'll need patching swiftly.  There's a range of extra content on offer. While there's naturally online co-op for everything, there are also a whole bunch of minigames littered throughout the campaign, ranging from block-building to whack-a-mole to racing games. There's also an entire arcade section filled with puzzles and simple skill tests. Most of these games feel like iPhone game clones, making heavy use of touch input and mobile-style level select systems. Whether you're into iOS gaming or not, these arcade add-ons are adequate extras that are worth checking out at least once. It's nice to see mobile-style games being packaged as extras rather than sold on the PSN for $10, at any rate.  The presentation is as solid as ever. Stephen Fry returns to narrate and teach in his usual dapper fashion, while the selection of music is eclectic and suitably quirky. Graphically, the game looks a little washed out in comparison to its technically superior PS3 predecessors, but it's still a fine-looking Vita game -- not as pretty as, say, Gravity Rush, but certainly not unpleasant to look at by any stretch of the imagination. Objects obviously look a bit less detailed and animations aren't quite so lively, but Double Eleven and Tarsier did a fine job of preserving as much of the aesthetic spirit of the series as possible.  LittleBigPlanet PS Vita is the definitive LittleBigPlanet. The new interface options work splendidly, the extra toys are fun to play with, and the portable format simply works best for such a creative and laid-back venture. It's not as visually attractive as its bigger brothers, and it does little to move the series forward in any meaningful way, but it's by far the most earnest fun I've had with a LittleBigPlanet game to date, and something I feel belongs in the library of any PS Vita owner. I certainly hope it finds its way to many players, as the community will need a lot of support to keep it going.  LittleBigPlanet has come home, and the PS Vita has found a game truly worthy of its potential. 
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LittleBigPlanet gets bigger and littler
The original LittleBigPlanet earned a lot of its praise through sheer charm alone. The cute presentation and unique creativity afforded to the player won it a lot of acclaim, despite the fact that, to be fair, the actual game...

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Final Fantasy VII gets remade using LittleBigPlanet 2


Sep 11
// Tony Ponce
It's obvious now that Square Enix will never, ever remake Final Fantasy VII for fear of... I dunno... diluting the property or some stupid nonsense. In any case, the company is way too busy working on that "Fabula Nova Cryst...
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The DTOID Show: Metal Gear Rising, CoDBlops & VITA GAMES!


Aug 15
// Max Scoville
Hey guys! Here's today's Destructoid Show! Tons of news is coming out of Gamescom right now. For starters, Sony's press event was packed with juicy Vita news. We've got Call of Duty: Black Ops Declassified, Killzone: Mercena...
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gamescom: New LittleBigPlanet 2 cross-controller DLC


Aug 14
// Dale North
Shown at Sony's gamescom press conference, the PlayStation Vita will serve as an extra screen and controller for LittleBigPlanet 2 with this newly announced cross-controller DLC pack. With this, you'll use the Vita as a contr...

Preview: LittleBigPlanet (PlayStation Vita)

Aug 08 // Chris Carter
[embed]232631:44612:0[/embed] LittleBigPlanet (PlayStation Vita)Developers: Double Eleven, Tarsier Studios, XDevPublisher: Sony Computer EntertainmentRelease: September 2012 So what's truly new to the franchise in the Vita version of the game? Simply put, LBP Vita features an all new story, touch controls, and 3G portability. Unlike the PSP title, which featured a wholly ancillary storyline (a holiday walkabout), LittleBigPlanet Vita is back with an epic hero-versus-villain showdown. Sackboy finds himself right in the middle of a conflict on the planet Carnivalia, involving its residents and the good-gone-evil Puppeteer. Formerly a source of entertainment for the residents of Carnivalia, the Puppeteer, a God-like creature, snapped and went insane after his audience booed his performance for the first time. Sackboy happens upon Carnivalia during its time of reckoning, and Colonel Flounder, a stalwart resident, leads you to safety at the secret camp La Marionetta, which is where our story begins. All of the same basic mechanics you know and love are back, such as stickers, high score leaderboards, collectible costumes, no-death-run rewards, four-player online co-op for story mode, and unlockable story mini-games. The preview version we were able to test had the first eight levels, which comprised the entirety of the first world, as well as one mini-game in the all-new "Arcade Mode," which basically consists of a collection of mobile, bite-sized experiences. Said included game was actually called "Tapling," and was basically a mish-mash of Limbo and Gish, which tasks a little blob/sackboy head with rescuing other versions of his own kind, while avoiding an incredibly creepy race of spider-people. The game was controlled entirely using the touch screen, and the only way the blob can move is through a rocket-propelled jump. Just like various other mobile games such as Angry Birds, it had the standard level select/three-star rating setup, meaning it was easy to pick up and put down if you only wanted to do one or two levels. Because of this approach, it was really easy to learn yet hard to master should you wish to go after the three-star rating in every stage. Ultimately, these games don't seem like they're going to be Earth-shattering, but as an added bonus to a game that already has a full story mode, a creation mode, and an online community of levels, it isn't bad, either. Although the front touch controls add a whole new dimension to platforming, the rear touch controls are rather annoying. Front touch was incredibly fun to play with, and the preview had a number of different objects to mess around with. For starters, it had a pinball-esque pull lever that can rocket you sky high, as well as a wheel that you have to rotate with clockwise finger motions. All of this is done in real time, so you can utilize an optional "claw stance" with your hands to engage the touch tools and move/jump at the same time. "The claw" is by no means required, as the game is usually designed in such a way where you have a half second or so to readjust to the controls. Rear touch isn't as fun, I'm afraid. To be honest, I've ever really been a fan of the back touch screen anyways, since it's so damn easy to trigger accidentally. This is also the case here in LBP Vita, and in addition to potential accidental block triggering, a cursor also appears whenever your fingers are resting on the rear pad, which can get extremely annoying unless you hold the Vita in an odd position to avoid the pad altogether.  Thankfully, front and rear touch blocks are aptly labeled as blue and green blocks respectively in-game, so you shouldn't get too confused from a gameplay standpoint. It also feels kind of cool to touch things into and out of the front and back of the screen, like Escape Plan. Towards the end of the preview version, they even had a Pushmo-esque puzzle to solve, which has you erect a mountain of pushable blocks to climb up. Fortunately, touch implementation doesn't stop there, because with LittleBigPlanet, the Vita flexes its proverbial muscles over the competition with multi-touch. For the uninitiated, multi-touch simply allows you to touch multiple points on the screen at the same time, as opposed to something like the 3DS, which only allows one touch point at any given moment. There are daily arguments amongst tech enthusiasts in regards to resistive vs. capacitive touchscreens, and single vs. multi-touch, but if you want my view, I'm so used to multi-touch at this point through my iPhone that nothing else feels right. Multi-touch not only enhances the single-player experience, but it also allows for multiple people to play mini-games on the same unit simultaneously. For instance, one example that wasn't included in the preview (but will be in the retail version) is table hockey: if you tilt the Vita to its side, you can play one game on both sides of the device at the same time. The preview also included a "whack-a-mole" type game that was severely enhanced with the ability to use as many fingers as you wish to slap the dirty varmints back into their holes. Considering the screen is just as accurate as anything else out there, this extra addition is very welcome indeed. The preview version also had a level creator with limited tools to fool around with, so I created a pretty basic level with the objects I could muster up. The creator has come a long way since the first game, as it now has the ability to script fairly complex AI routines, as well as pretty much all of the add-ons created in the past four years, including the extremely detailed water update. The other levels already available in the preview were much better than mine, which included an arrangement of 16-bit platformers (using subtle graphical trickery with the editor), homages (Limbo, and Mirror's Edge), and original/art content. Basically, if you can make it in LBP 2, you can make it here. Level linking is also still included, which means that you can create multiple worlds and attach them together without forcing the player to go back to the Pod screen every time they want to proceed. Although the ability to pull and share levels on the go is a great addition to the franchise, there is one major problem with the Vita edition in terms of the level creator: screen real estate. To be blunt, making complex levels is rather hard when you can only see so much surface area to work with. The Vita's OLED is beautiful in terms of the image's output, but video out would have severely benfited the game here; sadly, Sony has no current plans to support it. No online play through 3G is also a bummer, but we already knew that 3G would only truly lend itself to asynchronous gameplay out of the gate. All in all, LittleBigPlanet Vita feels like a decent amalgamation of the franchise. I'm not completely sold on the single-player portion yet, and I'm not a big fan of creating levels on a tiny screen, but ultimately, all of the charm and gameplay that made the original so great is fully intact.
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LittleBigPlanet got off to a modest start in 2008, but it wasn't a runaway hit. For my wife and I, it was the entire reason we bought a PlayStation 3, but for others, it was simply a floaty, uninspired platformer. I think on ...

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LittleBigPlanet Karting officially dated: November 6


Aug 07
// Dale North
The unique union of user creation and kart racing comes together officially on November, the newly revealed launch date for LittleBigPlanet Karting (in North America). Get ready to create your own Sackboy and his kart a...
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LittleBigPlanet Vita dated for September 25


Aug 02
// Jim Sterling
LittleBigPlanet Vita has finally been given a release date, with bored Vita owners having something new to do in North America on September 25. Europeans get it a touch earlier, its release date being September 19.  For ...
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LittleBigPlanet Karting rolls out beta signups


Jul 02
// Chris Carter
It feels like forever ago that LittleBigPlanet Karting was announced, and finally, as of today, we are edging ever closer to release. Sony has now opened beta signups for everyone who is interested. This isn't the first time ...
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E3: Sony unveils Cross Controller for PS3/Vita


Jun 04
// Maxwell Roahrig
During its press conference today, Sony announced plans to allow the Vita to become an enhanced controller for PlayStation 3 games. LittleBigPlanet 2 will be getting a Cross-Controller patch which offers a new story mode, sti...
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Journey and Escape Plan infiltrate LittleBigPlanet 2


Apr 24
// Chris Carter
While you're waiting for LittleBigPlanet Karting, you may as well enjoy LittleBigPlanet 2, right? Well this week thatgamecompany and Fun Bits Interactive are making it a bit easier, with the dawn of Journey and Escape Plan co...
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Live show: Little Big Planet multiplayer on Mash Tactics


Mar 26
// Bill Zoeker
As a new week starts, it's once again time for "Multiplayer Monday" on Mash Tactics! Today, King Foom is harkening back to an old personal tradition of playing Little Big Planet and Little Big Planet 2 with the viewers. With ...
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United Front Games talks LittleBigPlanet Karting


Mar 22
// Jordan Devore
Media Molecule is teaming up with United Front Games (ModNation Racers) on LittleBigPlanet Karting, as detailed by the PlayStation Blog today. The game, due out later this year for PlayStation 3, looks like a natural extensio...
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LittleBigPlanet Karting is a real game that's happening


Feb 10
// Jim Sterling
LittleBigPlanet is going to become a kart racer, creatively titled LittleBigPlanet Karting. It seems odd that a series built around making what you want and creating many types of games has been restricted to a single genre, ...
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LittleBigPlanet's PS Vita trailer shows off its features


Dec 13
// Harry Monogenis
LittleBigPlanet on the PlayStation Vita was a show-stopper for many at E3 2011 with its amazing visuals. Dale North was able to play around with the game for a while, and wrote about how well the PS Vita'...
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Black Friday: Rayman Origins $30 at GameStop, much more


Nov 23
// Brett Zeidler
We're just two days away from Black Friday. Everything has culminated up to this point. While everyone else is sifting through the piles of ads looking for the best deals after eating two platefuls of turkey, you've already g...
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Black Friday: Kmart selling MGS HD for $35, more


Nov 22
// Brett Zeidler
We are getting ever closer to the busiest shopping day of the year. Kmart has some pretty good deals going on. Here's a short list of what you can expect to find should you choose to do shopping there: $199.99 - Get a $25 gi...
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Black Friday: Target has some great deals


Nov 19
// Brett Zeidler
We are now officially less than a week away from the post-Turkey Day madness. If you're set on stopping by either Walmart or Best Buy I can't blame you for that. Here's why you should still give Target a chance though: $139....
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Black Friday: Newer releases on sale for $28 at Walmart


Nov 10
// Brett Zeidler
Well, here we are two weeks away from Black Friday itself. Pretty soon every retailer in existence will once again be vying for your post-Turkey Day attention with unheard of prices on pretty much everything. Walmart has gott...
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LittleBigplanet screens are looking hot on PS Vita


Aug 18
// Jim Sterling
Some new screenshots for LittleBigPlanet on the PlayStation Vita have squirted out of Gamescom, and they're looking quite pretty indeed. Really reminds me of the time when I thought the Game Boy's collection of black blocks o...
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LittleBigPlanet not hindered by PSN outage


Jul 20
// Liam Fisher
During the PlayStation Network downtime in May, many thought the outlook for Sony and its properties looked mighty bleak. Network outages mean lowered consumer trust and, more often than not, a reluctance to return to the ser...
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LittleBigPlanet could have been free to play


Jul 20
// Jordan Devore
In a panel discussion between former Sony executive Phil Harrison and Media Molecule staff, it was revealed that the team was at one point pushed to make LittleBigPlanet into more of an open platform with no financial barrier...
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Final Fantasy VII sackboys in LittleBigPlanet 2 are ugly!


Jul 05
// Dale North
Yesterday it was announced that Sackboy from LittleBigPlanet 2 would get some Final Fantasy VII treatments. That sounds like a fun idea until you actually see them. Gah! Aeris/Aerith looks so derpy that I can't look at the ab...
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E3: LittleBigPlanet Vita: Better than on PS3! (hands-on)


Jun 07
// Dale North
LittleBigPlanet on Vita has to be seen in person to be believed. It's beautiful! Sony put together a little playable demo to show off how they worked in all of the new Vita interface types into the LittleBigPlanet world. It w...
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E3: LittleBigPlanet impresses on PlayStation Vita


Jun 06
// Jordan Devore
At least for the time being -- which, admittedly hasn't been very long -- the emphasis on the PlayStation Vita's software library seems to heavily favor games that were successful, beefy favorites on PlayStation 3. Y'know --...
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E3: LittleBigPlanet 2 gets better Move support


Jun 06
// Bob Muir
When LittleBigPlanet 2 shipped, it included some token support for PlayStation Move in the form of Sackboy's Prehistoric Moves. While cute, the self-contained levels didn't leverage full support of the peripheral. That's chan...
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MERD: A stunning FPS built in Little Big Planet 2


May 19
// Conrad Zimmerman
The above video is of Massive Epic Raging Destruction (MERD), a first-person shooter game built using the game creation tools in Little Big Planet 2. As a guy who can barely grasp the idea of what's possible with enough...
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So good: Back to the Future in LittleBigPlanet 2


Feb 07
// Jordan Devore
Warning: this video may cause your face to melt if you have an attachment to Back to the Future. Even during the beta for LittleBigPlanet 2, we saw some serious shit. And, as evidenced by Kotaku's Stephen Totilo, creative re...
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LittleBigPlanet gets a much-needed wiki


Jan 28
// Jordan Devore
LittleBigPlanet developer Media Molecule is trying to get the word out that there's now a wiki for the creatively demanding platformer series. Whatever makes building Zelda dungeons easier is fine by me. The wiki will be run ...

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