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LittleBigPlanet - hands-on

There’s a very good chance that LittleBigPlanet is going to face a make-or-break situation when the game is finally released. The developers at Media Molecule readily admit that the game is essentially half finished and, potentially, never will be. You see, LittleBigPlanet is massively reliant on the community aspects of the game and even more so on the talented gamers who the developers hope will create levels to play and share.

Personally, we don’t think that they have a great deal to worry about. You need only see sites such as YouTube or MySpace for examples of community-supplied entities to see that people want to make things and they want other people to see it. Even the complexities of mechanics and physics (fundamental theories that are essential to LittleBigPlanet) aren’t a hurdle. If anything, LittleBigPlanet supplies the tools to create infinite things of beauty, curiosity and wonder. And there are a lot of smart cookies out there with ideas so astonishing they can make something incredible out of very little. Programs such as cult web-game Line Rider, the Quake mod software - even the car decal editor in Forza Motorsport 2; give the right someone even the most basic building blocks and they’ll construct something your average gamer could never even dream of. Imagine what they could do with LittleBigPlanet…

Now, you could be reading this and thinking “I don’t have the first idea how to develop a game - I just like playing them.” But this is another beauty of the game. LittleBigPlanet has a decent-sized offline mode, with a wealth of levels created by the developers and, of course, you’ll be able to play, rate and pinch the best stuff from the levels made by those with the time and inclination too. It’s an incredibly exciting prospect because, with the groundwork in place (very clever, accessible and good-looking groundwork) it’s up to you guys to help it live up to its potential. And we think you’ll do a grand job…

The front-end of LittleBigPlanet is as deceptively deep as the rest of the game. Essentially, this big planet contains all the pre-made levels created by Media Molecule and it’s the place to access all the user-created content. It’ll also be where you’ll see all the top-rated levels and where you can comment on them. The small planet (Your Moon) is where you keep all your homemade levels, minigames and random guff you’ve created.

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