LittleBigPlanet PSP Preview; PS3 vs. PSP
- Posted November 11th, 2009 at 12:28 EDT by Adam Dolge
- 10 Comments
Released last winter, LittleBigPlanet proved to be one of the most crucial PlayStation 3 software releases for Sony to date. Released to universal acclaim, developer Media Molecule created a unique gaming experience in the addictive SackBoy platformer that encouraged users to not only play through pre-created storyline levels, but to try their hand in building and sharing their own levels. What’s best about the LBP world is that it’s so immersive; so much in fact that Media Molecule has gone on recorded saying a sequel is not necessary. Furthermore, the game continues to see support over a year after its release, thanks in no small part to Media Molecule’s rapid onslaught of downloadable content via PSN (more recently, we learned that a forthcoming patch will include water – an element we imagine will be a massive addition to the game).
As you probably know, Sony is releasing LittleBigPlanet PSP on November 17. We’ve spent some time playing the game, and we are happy to report that the PSP is a faithful recreation of its PS3 counterpart. Mind you, the handheld version is a bit scaled down, and noticeably lacks the PS3’s entertaining multiplayer modes that are a blast to play with friends, locally or via the Internet. Still, the core gameplay mechanics in the PSP version are as strong as they are in the PS3 version. In fact, some elements work so seamlessly on the PSP that at times we forgot we were playing it on a handheld device.
As mentioned previously, the most noticeable difference between the console and handheld version of the game is the lack of multiplayer. Senior producer Mark Green previously offered explanation as to why this mode was omitted, revealing that the PSP is not capable of running multiplayer with the game’s current physics system. If this were the case, the PSP would lose about a third of the processing power and a third of the system memory. Still, after playing the game ourselves, we understand why Media Molecule ultimately made this decision - the physics are so spot-on that they feel identical to the home console version. Despite this, we’ll concede that not being able to play through levels with friends online is a feature sorely missed.
One of the other differences rests in the checkpoint system. The PSP version is decidedly more lenient when it comes to dying and respawning at checkpoints. After playing through the game for about a week now, we did not encounter one level (either in storyline mode, or user created) that we failed because we died too many times. This does not mean the game isn’t difficult. Some of the levels offer some very elaborate and difficult puzzles that left us scratching our heads. In one particular sequence, we rode a vehicle and shot cannonballs at a pursuing dragon. We had to shoot the cannonballs into the dragon’s mouth to keep him from swallowing us whole. This took us several tries, but we never actually failed the level; instead after a dozen or so tries, we out ran the dragon and made it to safety.
The biggest similarity you’ll notice right from the beginning is the absolutely adorable presentation. We hate using the word adorable, but it’s the best way to describe the brilliant voiceover, tutorials, and, of course, the ever-loveable SackBoy. From the intro movie to your first attempt at creating a level, the presentation is stunning and a joy to behold. Sure the graphics are not HD PS3 quality, but for the trusty PSP, they are nothing short of impressive. As we touched on earlier, Media Molecule has applied extreme care and attention to the game's physics system. In fact, the only major change is the smaller depth of field in LBP PSP; while the PS3 version has several layers, the PSP version only sports a couple.
LittleBigPlanet was a huge hit for the PS3, and with the forthcoming release of the PSP version, Sony is undoubtedly hoping the game will facilitate sales of its swanky new PSPgo as we gear up for the holiday season. Find out if the game is worthy of system seller status in our review of LittleBigPlanet PSP next week.
- 7:34am EST - November 11th, 2009
lack of multiplayer kills this for me, too bad as it seems like a great game but multiplayer is what made LBP fo me, being able to play through your own levels with your mates rocked
- 8:00am EST - November 11th, 2009
I was kind of hoping that there would be integration between the PSP and PS3 version. As i generally dont have time at home to create levels i would have liked the idea of being able to use my commute to london every day as a chance to create the levels via my PSP then porting them to the PS3 to play and share. Maybe you can but i am unsure, anyone else have any ideas on this
- 10:45am EST - November 11th, 2009
No Multiplayer, that is what I was looking forward for the most?! There are some levels on the PS3 that I just could not get through without my friends. Instead of buying on the launch date, I think I just might wait till I read/hear reviews about it now. WOW, no multiplayer, that really sucks!!!!
- 11:15am EST - November 11th, 2009
Cant wait to see the final verdict! :D
- 3:38pm EST - November 11th, 2009
Good way for people who do not have a PS3 to experience a little of what LittlebigPlanet is all about. But no multiplayer? Don't see why not. If Sony would be smart and release adhoc party in the US already ( seriously, its been in Japan nearly a year already and works perfectly ) there wouldn't be any online problems with PSP titles and it would be easy to impliment.
Anyway. I won't pick this up considering I already have this game. But for those who don't have a PS3 or anyone who just REALLY loves LBP hardcore style, this will be a solid pickup.
- 1:46pm EST - November 12th, 2009
LBP without the multiplayer would be kinda lame, punching your friends on your pod... doesn't get better than that
- 4:31am EST - February 10th, 2011
- 5:10am EST - February 10th, 2011
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