We couldn’t get LittleBigPlanet Karting’s online mode working last week, so our review had a few shortcomings. Don’t worry, though, we’ve tried the retail version since and it’s all good – but should you buy it? Well, in the first of a new series of features here on TheSixthAxis, we’ll give you the tools to decide for yourself.
Should I Buy… guides are straightforward. Start at ‘5’ (the average score) and add or subtract points depending on how relevant they are to you. When you reach the end you’ll have a score out of 10 – or thereabouts – and you’ll be able to decide for yourself. Easy, right?
Do you like LittleBigPlanet? If yes: +3, if no: -3
Daft question? Not really. Karting takes pretty much everything about LittleBigPlanet and then wraps four wheels around it. The menus, the interface, the voiceover, the graphic style, the characters – it’s all here, except you’re not platforming, you’re racing.
Do you like Kart racing games? If yes: +2, if no: -4
LBPK isn’t the best karting game on the planet, it’s not, but it’s far from the worse. Karting games normally sacrifice detailed physics and handling for arcade fun and plenty of weapons, and in the large LBPK actually does this pretty well – it’s not a patch on Mario Kart’s finesse but given the IP it’s actually pretty capable.
The game's pretty enough in places, if not exactly cutting edge in terms of image quality.
LittleBigPlanet Karting has a decent single player – lots of levels across lots of worlds, and although you’re unlikely to want to play them over and over again there’s still the online community levels to try too. But, if you’ve got mates who play this sort of game a lot, the game is instantly much, much better. It also supports up to four players split-screen!
Is your PS3 connected online? If yes: +3, if no: -2
Slightly different to the above question, but a lot of LBPK’s long term qualities come from comparing your times and scores with others, and downloading all the community levels. If you don’t have online, you’ll be limited to the core tracks and offline split-screen.
Are you creative? If yes: +2, if no: -1
You don’t need to make your own tracks in LBPK if you don’t want to, but if you do the track editor is massively impressive, and almost limitless in scope. It takes the best bits of ModNation Racers and couples them with those in previous LittleBigPlanet games, giving you quick track layouts but complex, detailed surroundings. If you like making your own stuff, this is great.
Did you like ModNation Racers? If yes: +1, if no: -3
LBPK is made by the same folk that made ModNation Racers, and as a result feels similar in terms of handling and controls. It’s not identical, but there’s definitely the same familiarity here. That’s either a good thing or a (very) bad thing, and that extends to the Create mode in some respects too.
Hopefully you’ll have arrived at a score. Let us know what it is, and whether you plan to get the game today, in the comments.