Showing off a flyer from earliest of development days of LittleBigPlanet, it is exceptionally impressive to see how the game went on to change over the course of development. Granted, the basic principles are still present in the final product that were evident in the original vision, however the overall changes that were supplanted during the creative design process are interesting to ponder.
Designed under the working title Craft World, the flyer pictured above clearly illustrates what Media Molecule had in mind when they first started working on what would become LittleBigPlanet. Building on the four pillars of unique visual style, creativity, a dynamic world and episodic content as well as sharing online it becomes very clear what the initial vision set out to do. For instance, the overall initial premise has remained the same in which the player guides their character through a story-led world, but the overall purpose of the packed in content is to spur ideas and show players the world they can ultimately create. But it seems from this design document of sorts that Media Molecule always had online in mind as a huge component of gameplay. Sure, you were always suppose to be able to customize your character, but what’s the point of doing it if no one will ever see it? Additionally, the sheer amount of creative user content that has surfaced from the LBP community has been, for lack of a better term, immense.
But over time, it seems the visual style did change, despite the initial creative intentions. While the game does have the certain visual aesthetic that might make it comparable to the stylistic tastes of Tim Burton, it is leagues more lighthearted. The sackboy/girl/person has become iconic in that it shows off a type of innocence, such as a mind that hasn’t been imprinted with any information yet, until someone customizes it to look like Altair, Chun-Li or a Pirate-Ninja. But that’s where the tip of the iceberg begins and is perhaps one of the best features. You are never forced to create an identity visually for your character. It stems even further to the levels where you can create it to be anything you want it to be and the share that with the community as a whole and while they are not all entirely perfect, there are some that shouldn’t be missed. Overall the greatest creative statement in the flyer is, “modding for the masses” as people have the ability and tools handed to them on a silver platter to create the levels they want to see and play how they want.
Ultimately, LittleBigPlanet isn’t just fun for the content that comes packed in on the disc so much as what it inspires players to create. Looking over the flyer it is easily visible that Media Molecule has some huge ideas when bringing this to the table, but thankfully, it has delivered and it still a must-own title for the Playstation 3. The online, offline and creative capacities present in the title essentially give the gamer the choices and abilities to follow the LBP tagline of ‘Play Create Share’ to the letter any single way they see fit. Thus from the origins to final product, while some things may have changed the spirit of fun in it’s purest sense is forever cemented in the game and larger community keeping many people playing for a very long time to come.