Initially I was a little dubious about Sony's new Karting game which
was based on the extremely popular Little Big Planet series
featuring the world's most customisable character, Sackboy. I also
thought that this would be on par with one of the custom made racing
games using this engine... fortunately I was wrong!
Even if you're still thinking of Mario Kart, Little Big
Planet Karting is actually a much more enjoyable game, especially
with the powerful customisation options. In essence, you could
actually build your ultimate Mario Kart game if that was your
With that said, Little Big Planet (LBP) Karting allows gamers
to Play, Create & Share their worlds. By choosing play, gamers can
jump straight into the game and race on a variety of different
tracks. Add in a variety of gadgets, boosts and power-ups and you
have all the arsenal needed to win the races. Skill does help as
well! The game even supports a local 2-player splitscreen mode which
works perfectly, however if you want to increase your non-AI
challenges, Little Big Planet Karting supports a decent online mode
Stephen Fry even returns to the franchise to lend his wondrous voice
to the world of Sackboy and Sackgirl so from the very first few
moments of the game, you immediately know that you are in the world
With a variety of different gaming modes, the main gameplay mode in
single-player is campaign. This requires the player to embark on a
set of races, complete various objectives and once again stop the
There's also some great customisation options available to player as
you can add decals to your car and of course create the ultimate
Sackboy. However, just look out for those obstacles on the track
which can sometimes mean the difference between a victory and a huge
Controls work well on the PS3 DualShock controller as you take on
your opponents on some truly deft defying tracks. It may not be
Gran Turismo or Need for Speed when it comes to accuracy
but karting around the world of LBP feels right. The game does
support the PlayStation Move and you can purchase a new accessory
called the PlayStation Move Racing Wheel. Although this method
works, you still cannot beat the DualShock controller in my opinion.
The developers have even employed some drifting mechanics as you
slide around those corners at high speed. Add in a variety of
power-ups and weapons and it's easy to see why some have compared
this game to Mario Kart.
Besides the more streamlined controls, the only thing cooler about
Mario Kart are the characters themselves. Although I love the
premise of LBP dearly, their characters are unfortunately no way as
memorable as the Nintendo stable of characters. Nonetheless, firing
your missiles and pressing turbo at the perfect opportunity
definitely makes this the best karting game on the PS3 and even PS2.
Another interesting premise of LBP Karting are the weapons used in
the game as they can be used as both attack and defend. This means
that all weapons have a counterattack and if someone fires a missile
at your kart and provided you have the right weapon selected, you
can in essence nullify the attack. Apart from your opponents on the
track, you also need to watch the obstacles in your way which does
require some driving tactics. You can't just race around the world
of LBP without a care in the world, unless you want to crash.
Building a world
The creation element of Little Big Planet Karting is extremely
reminiscent of the former PS3 games. If you're an old hand at
creating LBP games, than you should have no issues with the current
game. However newcomers may feel a little daunted as the only limit
to your tracks and characters is your imagination. Practice makes
perfect and if you do put the time into your creations, you'll soon
get a fan following on the net.
Given that, I'm pretty much a hack of the game creation of all
Little Big Planet games, however the karting aspect is a little
easier, especially when you put first track down. It's just the next
stage that becomes a challenge for me and it's called detail. I also
like how easy it is to share your creations and download other
peoples creations in this game.
Cute + Cartoon = Little Big Planet Karting. The game looks like any
other LBP game with its realistic "sack" looking characters that
really make this cardboard world come to life. Add in lighting,
special effects and LBP Karting is a good looking game on the PS3.
The soundtrack rocks as do the sound effects and of course, the
memorable voice of Stephen Fry himself.
If you're a fan of either Little Big Planet or any Karting game than
you've come to the right place with Little Big Planet Karting.
Not only does it support a robust karting game with a healthy amount
of racing features but it also supports the best customisation
options available in any game. More importantly, it allows the gamer
to create their own amazing racing environments which can easily be
shared and downloaded by others. The only draw back to the game is
the inclusion of the Move Controller and hopefully these casual
control systems will eventually go the way of the dodo.
Check it out!