I don’t know if it’s a sign of the times or the fault of new franchise developer Sumo Digital, but LittleBigPlanet 3 is a platforming game that is falling apart at the seams.
Like Assassin’s Creed Unity and Halo: Master Chief Collection, there are game-breaking bugs being shipped with LittleBigPlanet 3. There are multiple reports of files being corrupted or erased outright. Characters are falling through the various layers of each level. Multiplayer is essentially untouchable in my case as each session has yielded an error sending me back to the PS4 home screen. It breaks my heart that a game I was so looking forward to playing has been causing me headaches for days, but there’s still light at the end of this multicolored burlap tunnel.
Taking a step back, there’s actually a whole lot to love about LBP 3. Following the groundwork laid by its predecessors, players take charge of their very own customizable Sackperson through a series of colorful and charming levels filled with spikes, red-hot coals, and far too many electric death traps. Joining Sackboy in his adventures are three new compatriots: Oddsock, Toggle, and Swoop. Oddsock is a nimble four-legged character capable of bounding off walls, Toggle can transform from a large powerhouse to a tiny titan able to walk on water, and Swoop has the power of flight. You’ll have to become an expert with all four of these characters if you want to defeat the Titans that your new nemesis Newton has released upon the plant Bunkum.
Aside from new characters, this outing also adds new tools that Sackboy (not his new cohorts) can use to cleverly venture through the four worlds that makes up the game’s story mode. The Pumpinator blasts and inhales gusts of wind, the Blink Ball shoots orbs that instantly transport players to designated portals in a stage, the Hook Hat makes sliding on Bendy Rails possible, and Boost Boots grant a double jump. As useful as these items are, they’re just an inkling of what you can potentially come up with in Create mode.
Ah, Create mode… the aspect of the LittleBigPlanet series that has given each game legs far after other titles have been cast aside for the next big thing. To date, millions of levels have been created by other players online, and LittleBigPlanet 3 gives us over 70 new tools and 16 layers to work with. With all that freedom you can recreate your favorite action movie scenes, video games, create a working calculator, and invent other things you never thought possible.
Despite being able to transfer over all of the costumes, items, and levels you’ve collected from LittleBigPlanet and LittleBigPlanet 2 into LittleBigPlanet 3, this third outing simply feels incomplete. I’m sure the team at Sumo Digital is working hard to patch all the errors that have the potential to completely ruin the experience for fans, but until then, this title should be played with a grain of salt.
LittleBigPlanet 3 is now available on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3.