June 9, 2012 by Paul Curtin
Growing up on Mario Kart and even playing the N64 version in college dorms with friends, it’s easy to say that I’m a big fan of kart racing. The idea of merging the player creation and customization aspect of LittleBigPlanet with the ridiculously fun racing modes of Mario Kart has been something fans have wanted ever since the original LBP. Back in 2010, that idea came to a reality with the release of PlayStation 3′s other exclusive, ModNation Racers, leaving many to wonder if we really need another kart racing customization game since ModNation Racers already nailed it.
I got a chance to play LittleBigPlanet Karting‘s multiplayer racing this year at E3 and have to say that based on what I saw, ModNation Racers is still going to be sitting on top of the pedestal as the champ. To LBPK‘s credit, I didn’t get a chance to spend any time on the customization, which I’m sure based on the series’ rich history will be even greater than MNR‘s. E3 also had a hands-on multiplayer demo of a battle mode similar to Mario Kart‘s which MNR didn’t feature, which is sure to add even more value and depth to the game.
Like other kart racers, LBPK‘s racing focuses on eight players racing around courses, trying to pick up power-ups and finish in first place at the end of three laps. LBPK‘s racing is a solid and fun experience; however, it’s clear that the game is geared more towards a wider and more casual audience with the game featuring a much slower pace than that of ModNation Racers and even Mario Kart. I found the weapons to be far too generic and the racing to be a little too slow for my own taste. If anything, it actually made me want to go pick up another copy of ModNation Racers after finishing the race, so I could do some real racing.
With that being said, LittleBigPlanet Karting is still very promising. I’m willing to bet the customization is far better than ModNation Racers‘ and hopefully in that customization will be speed settings that will allow more hardcore racing fans to enjoy races with a little bit more of an adrenaline rush as they powerslide every corner and hit every big jump when the game is released later this year.