Monday, June 13, 2011

#26 -- "LittleBigPlanet" Reviewed | Z E R O stars

". . .a pretentious, private elementary school compressed into a hyper-concentrated videogame form. It's the most indifferent game of all time."

Kids, put your fingers in your ears, daddy's home, and he got the tip of penis clipped off by a cigar-cutter.

How, and why, would we allow this asparagus-scented game whose original title, we assume, was: Circumcision II: The Dick-Clippening, a piece of entertainment whose box-art displays a cuteness so violent that it violates the Geneva Convention, to get some playtime? Playtime that would lead to an over-abundance of dong-to-blade closeness? Because it was free. 

You could not pay us to play this game. We've never walked out of a movie. We've never turned down a free drink. We go outside when it's sunny for one good reason. We turned off LittleBigPlanet after 3 levels. 

LittleBigPlanet is Hipster: The Videogame. It wears its tasteless, unslightly goofiness pinned to it's tight denim dude-capris. The game has such an overabundance of stuff and yet it is so indifferent to every ounce of stuff within it. None of it is there for a reason. It's like owning a massive dictionary whose best feature is that: "at least the pages don't stick together because of errant spurts of semen across the paper." As far as we can tell, the object of the game is to collect bubbles on a 2D plane with a beanie baby that jumps like a drunken kite brought to life by black sorcery. As you collect things, you can then customize levels that you and your indie band, "UkuFAILe," designed on Sunday instead of finding a drummer. For your band. Get a fucking drummer for your band, LittleBigPlanet! You need rhythm. You have none. 

It's terrible. It's insulting. It's a pretentious, private elementary school compressed into a hyper-concentrated videogame form. It's the most indifferent game of all time. You can see the pride-boils popping on it's skin. As far as LittleBigPlanet is concerned, it, like Sarah Palin, can do no wrong, and the people that are fans of it can do no wrong. The game controls toddle like a stubborn mule with a bout of irritable bowel syndrome and a blue ribbon from the Wyoming State Retard Rodeo. 

LittleBigPlanet is a guy and the girl he wants to kiss -- him on ukulele, her on milk-jug -- playing Led Zeppelin covers at a burger joint; because they couldn't book time on a street corner. It's shit masquerading as confidence for the talentless mouth-breathers. It was designed to give morons hope. Dipshit dubstep fans in Brooklyn that "modded" their older sister's original Gameboy into an ashtray will love LittleBigPlanet

The visual aesthetic of LittleBigPlanet is that of the activity room in a Presbyterian Church basement. Go explore the emotions God cursed your souls with, children! The 2D side-scrolling gameplay itself has the personality of a 7 year-old introvert. Problem is, we must admit that LittleBigPlanet possesses the best reason to play a game: "no good reason," and we like games where the game is its own self-propelling compulsion. The reward for playing the game is more game to play, but playing LittleBigPlanet though is like chewing tin foil. There's always that feeling in the back of your head that because you're playing this game, a husband is forcing his wife to get a third abortion. 

In-game, you can't distinguish purpose from bullshit, nor objective from something far-off in the background that looks like a handlebar mustache on a falcon. Seriously, dude, why? People will shout: "there doesn't need to meaning behind this, it's just goofy for goofy's sake!" YouTube is goofy for goofy's sake, child. We laugh at it because its hilarity comes from the certifiably asinine -- but we don't sit down and watch YouTube for hours on end. We don't go to the British Diorama Museum to relax after work. We don't want to see the British Diorama Museum's Curator's YouTube channel. This is like wandering a Girl Scout's arts and crafts fair and every fifth step, you have to lube up another lead musketball with dark molasses, and shove it into a different orifice. It will poison you. It will poison your brain!

There are four buttons devoted to emoting or smiling and two buttons devoted to moving your arms. Just, moving them, ya know. It's exactly as we've feared. They've successfully simulated the act of operating an instant messenger client with nobody on the other end.

The game has no imagination. There is no need to simulate the feeling of playing with your childhood action figures (your "guys," as you referred to them (seriously, you did, don't be embarrassed (it's not embarrasing, LittleBigPlanet is embarrassing)). There's no simulation required, no need to simulate giving them your personality and then having them run through an imaginary world while a stern adult lectures you. That in and of itself is already a simulation. No, wait, it's better than simulation because it's imagination! Don't get all childhood-meta. Spike Jonze tried to do that in the Where The Wild Things Are movie and look where it got him. . .

. . .actually, that was a pretty decent movie. Not important. Imagination, yeah, uh, you can do this without a PlayStation 3. You should have already had these experiences in life -- when you were fucking six! Shit, you can still do it right now if you really, truly have to! Don't let our hatred for LittleBigPlanet stop you, and in fact, it should encourage you. Run down to a craft store and lay down $12 for pipe-cleaners, cardboard, felt, and a Nunchuck-Michelangelo. You don't have to be embarrassed to do those things, and if you are, distilling these hands-on activities into videogame form is not the answer you're looking for. 

At least when you played with your own action figures back in the day, you could huck them across the room if they missed the jump. Imagination lives in your head, not as a PSN handle out there on the Internet with every other fuckskull that got a free copy of the game after the network went down. We cannot imagine paying $60 for this game. We would not recommend it to adults, because if they think this is fun, they have no good childhood memories of actual fun -- and should probably get their meds balanced if they think this is going to displace the memories of broken beer bottles hurled at them when they were young -- and we can't recommend it to children because their imaginations shouldn't be nurtured in a digital world

And kids deserve tighter 2D control than this. Shame on you for not telling them that it exists! Go download your child a copy of Super Mario Bros. 3 on the Wii Virtual Console right now. Let them pick apart a Japanese idiot-savant's imagination for a while, shut off the Nintendo, and see where their creativity goes when you give them good role models instead of the conduit to the social media videogame clusterfuck that is LittleBigPlanet.

z e r o
(out of 4)

-- Ghost Little
on Twitter  |  @GhostLittle_WTF

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