LittleBigPlanet was one of those hit games that came out on the ps3 that was able to remind many of what couch co-op is and how much fun it could be. The main character was this little sack puppet, appropriately named sackboy, who ran around the imagosphere collecting bubbles and clothing options. Players could tackle levels with their friends either online or side by side. When I saw Sackboy:A big adventure released on Pc, something inside of me jumped for joy. The adorable character has returned with a fresh coat of paint and a brand new play style that is sure to capture the hearts of both young and old players everywhere. Even though we have ditched the traditional 2-d side view for a more 3D adventure, there is still a lot of fun to be found in each of the levels. Think of how Super Mario went from 2d to 3d in Super Mario World. While this is the best comparison for understanding some of the changes, that doesn’t mean Sackboy doesn’t have his own tricks up his sleeve.
We start our adventure with Sackboy watching all his friends get taken away by the big bad guy, Vex. He tears through the sky and plans to use the sackpeople to power his Topsy-turver in order to take over Craftworld. Sackboy sets off on his adventure with the help of an elder sackperson named Scarlet as well as a colorful cast of characters.
While the story isn’t anything groundbreaking and resembles something you would expect from a game targeted towards a younger audience, I would be lying if I said that watching a sad sackboy watch his friends get taken away didn’t make me feel the same way. Since Sackboy is a silent protagonist, we get a lot of emotion from his facial features and expressions so watching the adorable little puppet react to the world around him was a treat. Since players can customize the character throughout the game, his appearance in cutscenes range from a serious adventurer to someone who just stepped out of a festival.
This is where the real fun begins since players are given a wide arrangement of moves to use as they make their way through the levels. Sackboy can double jump, flutter in the sky, and roll around as you run through levels. Since a lot of these moves can flow right into the next, I found myself rolling and jumping through levels instead of just running. Sackboy:a big adventure hits the nail on the head when it comes to platformers since each move also allows Sackboy to tackle his enemies. Instead of requiring players to access a clunky combat system, you are able to roll into some enemies and jump on top of others. This means that players are able to translate the skills they develop from traversing the levels to taking out their enemies.
With this wide moveset, players are given big, linear levels to go through. Although the levels are straight forward, there are still many secrets to be found within each area. Secret areas that reward players with extra clothing items and other collectables make exploring the levels much more fun. I found myself searching every nook and cranny for stuff to make my little puppet look even cuter.
There are a ton of enemies to keep an eye out for and the levels themselves will give you environmental hazards to look out for but thankfully there are carefully placed checkpoints to help prevent unnecessary frustration. This gives you the ability to figure out the levels and their challenges without having to worry about major progression loss. With firepits and moving platforms filling many levels, it was nice to see the little character spring out of these checkpoints without any remarks about how bad I was doing or how that jump should have been doable.
One of the biggest highlights of the games, for me personally, has to be the music presented in each level. I have always been a fan of the LittleBigPlanet’s music so it was nice to see that they haven’t lost that special touch. I was able to bop along through the levels without anything feeling repetitive and the songs managed to fit the theme of each level. One of the major things I would love to point out is the use of licensed music to enhance some of the levels. Hearing Uptown funk play while I was thrown around a party town just made each moment feel even better. Jungle boogie is integrated in a wonderful way in the jungle level and I know for a fact that I will replay these levels because of how well the music fits in. One minor gripe I do have is that the songs with vocals tend to stop looping until you move onto the next segment so if you get stuck or are exploring one section a little longer than anticipated, you’ll hear this weird section that is just filler till you move on.
I reviewed this on the PC so it pleases me to say that the experience still felt as good as it did when I originally played it on the PS5. The controls still feel good and it was a little strange to see Xbox controller prompts on a Sony game but there were no hiccups there. This made couch co-op more enjoyable since I have a ton of 3rd party xbox controllers laying around.
Overall, I was excited to see Sackboy return with a bunch of new tricks and it even worked on the steam deck which is an added bonus. Sackboy: A big adventure feels right at home on the pc and makes it easy for players to jump in and out of games with their friends. With a wonderful soundtrack and colorful levels to explore, I am sure you will have a blast with the game. It ditches some of the features of older Littlebigplanet games, such as the ability to create levels and share them online, but this is to be expected with the change to 3D. If you are looking for a fun adventure to play through, Sackboy:a big adventure is definitely worth checking out.