Little Big Planet 2 – Demo Impressions

Little Big Planet is an amazing game! One that i embarrassingly only played for the first time a few months ago… Yes i was slow to jump on that gaming bandwagon… but at least i got around to playing it in the end?! Right?!

So anyway, after making the discovery that Little Big Planet is actually a fairly decent Freaking AWESOME game, I found myself ecstatic as i was told i’d get to play it at Eurogamer expo. I think this excitement showed on the day too, in how i immediately ran over to the game and well… played it! After all that’s what you do with video games… you play them. Unless of course you’re friends with one of those douche bags that sit around playing their consoles whilst you watch and never offer you a go… (I know a lot of people like that…).

Immediately after picking up the controller i was greeted with a familiar pod, customisation view and map view. I liked this as it made things straight forward for me from the start. Besides they were all good features, so why change something that’s already good?!  This i think stands for much of the game as you still see the same style race to the end levels with various obstacles preventing you from reaching the end.  I’m thankful that this didnt change as the mario-esque get to the end style the first game held, combined with its various challenges and need to collect items to further customise, made it more interesting for me.

Since noone has burst through my window at this point I’m assuming I’ve either been forgiven for taking so long to play Little Big Planet, or there’s a sniper waiting for me to step outside of the door… ANYWAY, when demoing the game a lot of focus was put onto the multi-player aspect. The multi-player in Little Big Planet 2 adds a competitive edge to the games, allowing upto four people to bat against eachother as they rush through to complete in the fastest time. This is made a bit more competitive by the ability to grapple onto other players and drag them back with you, preventing them from getting too far ahead. At one point we were literally sat grappling eachother down the same platforms for about 10 minutes…. then one of us actually made it to the end! (Spoiler Alert: It wasn’t me)

The costumes that allow you to customise your sack person are interesting as always! My favourite costume in the demo was probably the pimp suit, which came fully equipped with a hat, cape and PIMP STICK! With something like that in a demo I’m excited to see what crazy things get thrown into the full game!

I will be posting a video with some footage from the game and impressions of me playing over on RPIReviews soon! So keep an eye out there, and if by some crazy chance you’re reading this and work with Media Molecule… I’d love a promo to do a full review on one day! (I can dream…)

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Playstation Move – Initial Thoughts

In early september, Sony released their run at motion controllers. Now, straight away, you look at it and you think “Wii rip-off” and i don’t blame you at all. The actual controller design is very similar to that of the Wiimote.  However, it’s what is inside that makes all the difference, and also, what is on top that adds so much more than the Wii could ever be.

Let’s start with just the controller and forget about the colourful bubble on top for now. The controller has 9 buttons on it. The traditional playstation controller buttons (circle, square, triangle and a cross) with the Move button in the middle of those. On the back is the T button which is a trigger, and on the sides are start and select. The PS button is in the middle of the controller. Now, for most of the games i have played, the only buttons used are the T button and the Move button. An example is Sports Champion in which you can press the move button to flick a ping pong ball into the air to serve instead of flicking the remote upwards.

Now, in itself the controller offers 1:1 motion capture, very much like the Wiimotion Plus, but this is all in one device. Very handy, as this keeps the size and weight of the controller to a minimum. But the Playstation Move isn’t just about this 1:1 motion capture, oh no, it’s also about capturing full body movement of the player to give that little extra kick of realism to the game. This is where the Playstation Eye comes in!

As far as i’m aware, the camera technology in the Playstation Eye isn’t as advanced as that in Kinect, but the way it is used along with the controller is incredible. The little bubble ontop of the remote is tracked by the camera and will position it accurately on screen, along with the 1:1 motion capture built into the remote itself, it gives a greater sense of realism in the game, and a huge amount of extra accuracy. Well, that’s the theory anyway. When i set my Move up initially to just have a little go, it took forever to try and get the camera to locate the little bubble on top! This was mainly whilst playing Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11. I don’t know whether that was because the room was too light, or whether it was because the move version of the game had been rushed, but since spending the time to set it up efficiently, i haven’t had this issue.

Overall, the Move control system is very good, and much more accurate than the Wii at this present time. Whether Nintendo release something to make their more accurate in the near future is unknown, but at this time, the Move system is a top contender for the Wii’s top spot in the current market of Motion Controllers. Look out for a video review of move on the RPIreviews channel on youtube!