Hands-on With LittleBigPlanet 2’s Move Pack

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Hands-on With LittleBigPlanet 2’s Move Pack

LittleBigPlanet 2 for PS3

Formally announced at PlayStation’s E3 2011 press conference, the upcoming PlayStation Move Pack for LittleBigPlanet 2 will greatly expand the game’s already prodigious creation suite and add countless new gameplay variants. Based on my hands-on time, PlayStation Move support radically evolves the gameplay possibilities of LittleBigPlanet 2, whether it’s flinging and manipulating objects using the new Brain Crane power-up, creating outlandish Move-focused minigames from scratch, or animating characters and props by recording your PlayStation Move gestures.

“It’s the biggest update we’ve ever done,” Media Molecule’s Level Design Lead Kengo Kurimoto told me during a guided tour of the update last week in New York City.

When the Move Pack hits PSN this September, LBP2 owners will find six new Story levels in a Move-focused mini-campaign that picks up where LBP2 left off. One of the most significant gameplay enhancements comes as a potent new power-up called the Brain Crane. Like a telepathic revamp of the Power Gloves, the Brain Crane enables Sackboy to pick up and manipulate objects with nothing but the power of his tiny sawdust mind. You aim the Brain Crane by aiming the PlayStation Move and grab an object by pulling the trigger. Once the object is firmly in your grasp you can tug, lift, or wrench it to your heart’s content. The Brain Crane opens up inventive gameplay opportunities: yanking open weighted gates to solve puzzles, tugging spring-loaded platforms to make high jumps, or flinging your co-op comrade into a magma pit because…well, just because.

LittleBigPlanet 2 PlayStation Move

PSB: How early in the production of LittleBigPlanet 2 did you think about PlayStation Move support?
Kengo Kurimoto, Level Design Lead, Media Molecule: “We were very aware of it. It would’ve been nice to include it in LittleBigPlanet 2 from the start, but time constraints made that difficult. So we made Sackboy’s Prehistoric Moves as well, which was a demo to show what we could do with PlayStation Move. But the LittleBigPlanet 2 Move Pack is the full shebang…It took a lot of iteration. We had so many ideas…we went through and picked the best of them for the Move pack”

Sackboy’s six-level Story is orbited by a constellation of Move-enabled minigames that leverage the Move in wildly different ways. In my favorite minigame “Fast Food,” I tilted and twisted the PlayStation Move in order to guide a ball through an elaborate maze studded with traps and gadgets. The tilt control felt vastly more responsive and consistent than similar labyrinth games I’ve played on mobile phones, while the arcadey mechanics and chirping audio made it feel like a slower-paced game of Pachinko played with one ball.

I was also impressed by “Defence Mechanism,” a simple tower defense game that leveraged the Move’s precision cursor functions. A horde of enemies slowly advanced to the center of the screen and my helpless Sackbot buddies. Using the Move, I erected electrical barriers by placing lightbulbs into sockets strewn around several enemy paths. “It gets fiendishly difficult later,” Kurimoto cautioned me…and he wasn’t kidding.

LittleBigPlanet 2 PlayStation Move

I also played a deceptively simplistic puzzle game that showed shades of Rube Goldberg called “The Tail of Claude the Field Mouse.” The goal is simple: land a ball in a cup at the bottom of the screen by moving levers, tilting platforms, and arranging other objects. In a multiplayer-focused party game, I competed with Kurimoto to line up colored squares and detonate them. After only a few minutes of gameplay, it was clear to me that the Move Pack open up quite a few new gameplay genres that wouldn’t be practical when played with an analog stick. “For these kinds of games,” Kurimoto noted, “being able to move the cursor quickly and accurately is key. And the Move is sophisticated, with a lot of sensitive sensors.”

The fan-favorite Create mode is also getting a big overhaul to tap into Move’s motion capabilities. First things first, though. Using the PlayStation Move in the Create mode won’t allow you to magically draw platforms or geometry at will — for that level of ease, you’ll have to wait for LittleBigPlanet to make its touchscreen-friendly PS Vita debut. Instead, what you’ll get is a heap of potent new tools that tap into every command that Move supports: pointing, rotating, twisting, tilting, shaking, swinging, and practically anything else you can think of.

The key lies in the Moveinator, modeled off LBP2’s Controlinator in that it enables you to assign actions to every button and function of the PS Move — buttons, tilting, pointing — using a kid-friendly visual programming style. Kurimoto demonstrated the Moveinator flexibility by building a working, steerable cardboard rocketship (complete with laser cannon!) in less than 30 seconds. “One of the most powerful things about LittleBigPlanet 2 is the intercompatibility of the tools,” Kurimoto said. “They all work with each other.”

Other details abound. A new Move Cursor gadget will make lightgun-style games a breeze to design, the Move Recorder function enables you to record a gesture and apply it to any object (digital puppeteering, anyone?), and a Sticker Creator mode turns your Move into a paint brush for designing custom art.

After my demo ended, I was left with the feeling that I had only scratched the surface of what will be possible with LBP2’s Move Pack when it hits PSN this September. What new feature are you most interested in experimenting with? Leave your top picks in the comments!

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2 Author Replies

  • @49 (aquastorm) and OTHERS:
    Please stop already with the cross game chat non sense, it’s far from a console seller for a lot of people, it’s the game that counts. Also, Microshi…! patented it so, not Sony’s fault. It’s far from a “pink elephant”, you can know that by the huge amount of people annoyed by comments like yours about cross game chat in every articles here.
    Last thing, 360 never really crushed PS3 in sales, they just add a full year ahead, just look at the monthly sales now…I like my PS3 and just like Ps2 back in the day it’s just keep going UP, the games are great, enjoy them!

  • LOVELY!!!Cant wait!!;)

  • @the people that are asking questions not pertaining to this….go to the forums and ask them (eg vita…what does this have to do with the move update

    as for this costing..I sure hope it doesn’t as LBP2 was advertised with move support and well….it only has the little demo, so this better not! kinda false advertising to say that it has move support….but you have to pay for it?!?! we shall see I guess

    in any case this looks awesome…been kinda bored with LBP2 and this will definitely revive it for me

  • @Sid Is there any word on price yet? I can’t wait to get my hands on it, and I want to make sure I have enough funds in my wallet!

  • Finally!

  • Wheres the Black Ops Map Pack 3 At?? thts all psn gamers care about

  • are you talking about annihalation

  • I love when people can’t stay on topic *cough whiners about XGC and COD cough* Sack on topic, this Move update is going to be a very large splash in the community when it hits. I can’t wait to give it a go! I’ve got an idea or two in mind for it already.

  • I’m interested in knowing how playable this content will be for those of us who crave more LBP2 but do not own Move peripherals.

  • Nice thing, since this game has no PSN Pass required. It’s a feature that my Playstation Move is hungry for. That that, Resistance 3! I have this game where I can make wacky games with my Playstation Move.

    The question is: Why wait SO long for this. At least the Crane thing should of been in the game, and then have the Movinater out by this time.

    Anyways, Time to make a level that’s dark and use the Move as a flashlight, or even my Playstation Move as a paddle for some Arcade Classics goodies. Or, I could make Move Sports Champians: LBP Editon. Hope mine doesn’t get the YLOD before this comes out, or when I use this.

  • Gosh, I really want this, especially for the enhanced creation tools, but I hope it’s not too expensive :(

  • this last two weeks have been awesome for lbp2. ff7, kz3, i2, motorstorm:apoc packs. and info on the biggest update ever. im glad. i got the move specifically for lbp2. and to anyone complaining about xgc or saying xbox this xbox that, if u want to pay 60 buks a year just so u can chat with someone on another game and get bored of content a month earlier, be guest. give your ps3 to someone who appreciates it.

  • and do ps3’s still get the ylod, havent heard about it in a while.

  • LOL Sawdust mind. Well that looks like Plock.

  • I might buy Move now maybe make my own time crisis game…Thanx MM
    anyone wanna help my seal team six level add me

  • @sid free or $$?

  • Prehistoric Moves is horible. you should be able to use a move controller + Nav controller to control sackboy. That CO-OP crap is is for the birds. No buy from me.


    BTW how about saving online levels locally?? I’m tired to search for my favourite levels and wait for the long download and load times…. LBP would be so much better with the option to save user created levels locally!!!!

  • will there be a new patch icon indicating a move level? like the ones that show wether its a movie or a versus level.

  • It is gonna be free??? or how many it will cost? please answer

  • nice …..

  • i dont even have lbp2

  • peanut butter jelly with a baseball where he at there he go

  • @70, It will cost money. It’s a DLC pack with levels, items, and tools.

  • SKULLKING2000000

    so i all redy new about this so whats so graet

  • speakin of lbp2, i was just playin and made the most awsome glich ever1 this guy made a clone machine and i deleted some thing on it and clones went every where and then we went through the bottom and top of the level it was epic.

  • @76 A.K.A. DawnGuard

    It’s not a “Clone Glitch”. It just emitts a Sackbot and its costume is on copy owner. And they just make it move by using a Controllinator and it recieves it from the player. But still it’s cool. And I think what you did is delete the wire to the emitter so it kept emitting over and over.

  • @38 You don’t have to get the DLC trophies to get platinum. You just have to get the trophies that came with the game. I did it with Uncharted 2.

  • please make it free!!!!

  • when starhawks epic release make emmet graves costume and the rift people

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