E3 09: LittleBigPlanet + Mario Kart = ModNation Racers

Apparently, Sony’s tagline of ‘Play, Create and Share’ wasn’t just limited to its disarming physics-based platformer, LittleBigPlanet. Showing the first glimpse of their colourful racing game at Sony’s E3 press conference, developer United Front Games have managed to take Sackboy’s charm and creation tools and mix it with Mario Kart’s infectious pick up and play nature. The result is ModNation Racers, a title that could well do for racing games what LBP did for the platformer.

Like Mario's racer, Sony’s innovative game features Wacky Races-esque powers ups (including rocket launchers and other weapons) and ludicrous power slides. But unlike the toilet jockey’s kart game, ModNation won’t be sustained by entrenched mascots and familiar tracks. Instead it’ll thrive on the variety and freshness its course and character creators provide.

With a comparable amount of creative control as we have with Sackboy in LBP, we’ll be able to edit the diminutive drivers into Lucha libre wrestlers, Frankenstein-style monstrosities or Paris Hilton wannabes. Customising karts to suit our newly created racers should be a blast, too. And we can’t wait to craft contraptions that’ll shame anything Mario and co. ride around the Mushroom Kingdom in.

More exciting, though, is the sheer intuitiveness of the course creator. Not only can we edit the geography of trackside surroundings – with create tools similar to those found in Far Cry 2 letting you sculpt mountains and trees. But we can litter courses with a variety of ridiculous props, including explosive barrels, garden furniture and even flocks of sheep.

The best part though, is courses are created by driving around the landscape in third or first person. And this should ensure driving always feel natural and instinctive. Add to this the fact we’ll be able to share our tracks, characters and cars online, and the possibilities for karting chaos could be limitless. The days of Mario and his red shells could well be numbered.

Providing the final game lets us create buildings and complex inner city road systems, here’s what we’re making as soon as we get ModNation Racers out of the box…

Alright, maybe not the last one.

So what do you think? Reckon ModNation Racers could be as important for the PS3 as LBP? Will it really make Mario Kart irrelevant? What tracks would you like to create? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

June 05, 2009


  • crumbdunky - June 9, 2009 9:14 a.m.

    LBP is a massive boon to those of us gamrs that were brave enough to get girlfriends and then daft enough to have kids. Creating levels with my wee boys is just like me and my dad with the Lego way back when. The user generated stuff is now, at the top end, way better than the MM levels and MNR looks to be even simpler to make stuff with and as my noys LOVE MKDS and MKWii this is a no brainer/holiday boredom killing saviour! We'll have to see if it's gonna be a full retail or PSN game and what content/tools it ships with but you have to remember that the user generated content is what most people spend their time on in LBP anyway. Sony make another game that has "Nintendo should've done this" written all over it.
  • thomashalpenny - June 6, 2009 11:54 a.m.

    it looks pretty amazing nd im defo gonna get it. it gonna b de next Burnout Paridise!
  • lightsideluc - June 5, 2009 7:01 p.m.

    You forogt to add "trackmania" between "Mario Kart" and LBP". Unfortunetly it looks like all the racing is course-only, IE MK, instead of checkpoints like TM which means you can make those mountains for show but otherwise they're useless. No huge-ass adrenaline jumps over them or something like that, just the follow-the-line-or-inexplicably-warp stuff. Still, if they do it right it could be awesome. Sony is doing what Ninty should've done a long time ago.
  • Valntyne - June 5, 2009 2:18 p.m.

    Sounds like a fun idea too bad i dont have a PS3(i AM but wont say it)
  • KingEamon - June 5, 2009 2:15 p.m.

    I would buy it if it was a download but if it is full retail price it's asking a bit much.
  • suicidali - June 6, 2009 4:48 p.m.

    I personally got kinda bored of LBP after a while, but LBP with racing sounds awesome
  • Picnic1 - June 6, 2009 1:27 p.m.

    Both Little Big Planet AND Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and bolts deserve to be remembered this generation for allowing user created content. This seems to mix the ideas from both games.
  • WonsAuto - June 5, 2009 7:30 p.m.

    Depending on the customization options, I'd have no problem buying this as a $15-20 download, or even a $40 retail release. Otherwise it may be a bit much. Recaptcha: Ricardo York
  • helix92 - June 5, 2009 6:23 p.m.

    Looks cool but I doubt it'll be as awsome as LBP. That game was a true triumph.
  • Hazza22299 - June 5, 2009 5:59 p.m.

    VaIntyne ha u werent first
  • DoctorGordonFreeman - June 5, 2009 2:21 p.m.

    looks great! and the way of making tracks is so innovative. ima get it even if its 100 bucks!

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