Our blessed QA dept have been working their little fingers to the bone this year, keeping up with our demanding development cycle, finding all the bugs they could, and eating a lot of Nandos. With the game finally gold, they had a little bit of ‘free’ time on their hands, and so I asked them to pick some of their favourite beta levels of the year for a little MmPicks roundup.
Some of these you may have played already, perhaps you haven’t seen them though, and with Christmas coming up, now is the perfect time to kick your shoes off and check out some of the weird and wonderful creations on the LittleBigPlanet 2 Beta. Have a great Christmas!, see you all in the New Year!
Make your way through a devious mass filled with evil spirits. Destroy all the spirits to win! Move and turn with the left stick or the D-Pad. Turning is confined to 90 degree intervals. Shoot with square. The level will end when all the spirits are vanquished or you are dead. Health to the left. Bonus for fast completion! (TIP: go as close as you can to corners before turning) http://beta.lbp.me/v/d9-3
How on earth this works we've no idea, even after reading Foofle's blog post on it we're still scratching our heads. That said this is a work of genius and one of (if not the) first level that has really hit on the paradox of making a game engine within a game engine. There has long been a conversation thread around QA about how long it will take before someone does something like this and the answer is not very long! This evokes memories of playing our very first FPS's and does a good job of recreating the tension you felt when you turned the corner to find an enemy running towards you.
A pixel treat. Made it myself and it was so hard but I pulled it off. Stomp on enemies and collect pears! The boss is defeated by deflecting enemies when stomped on a side and not dead center. Enjoy! NOW WITH CHECKPOINTS! NOW CRISPER!! http://beta.lbp.me/v/8fk-
We loved the retro pixel art style of this level, and the animations of the iguandon for navigating and jumping look and work really well. The animation for checkpoints being activated and for the boss death all work in conjunction with each other to make a very aesthetically pleasing level. As well as being a cool platformer it is also an excellent showcase for the music sequencer with not one but two different composed music tracks. We’d really like to see this expanded upon and some more levels made please!!
1-2P figthing level featuring voice acting by me and my 5 year old daugther zelda, special thanks to emoguy and psyntens for helping me with stages. http://beta.lbp.me/v/h5-2
Great level that's really fun when you're in the mood to mash buttons. Simple and satisfying controls, means that although the fighting doesn't have much depth it's still great fun to play. What's really brilliant is how huge the thing is! 18 Characters, each with their own voice recordings and unique Special and Revenge moves. Two stages that slowly get damaged during the fight and a great clear opening interface. The updates that Pollozarraraz43 does are also very promising, showing that he wants to continue making his level better and better, we certainly won’t stand in your way!!!
Here is a short little level where I tried to make everything synced to the background music. It took quite a while compared to the length of the level, since the music had to be hooked up to an insane amount of Direction Combiners to work properly. Enjoy! http://beta.lbp.me/v/wft6
The epitome of simplicity in design is found in Stereo/mono; an inventive rhythm-based level which takes platforming to a new level. Its use of two-tone colour, shooting to a thumping beat succeeds on a base level that will have you involuntarily tapping to it's tune whilst driving your attention to the level from start to finish. Your ability to jump will be tested to the full with this perfect example of classical platforming, which is made addictive through the faultless use of the music sequencer. It may not be the most elaborately created level in the whole of Craftworld, but you will definitely not forget this short little number anytime soon
Only for a few days each century when the tide is low enough, it uncovers the ancient caves of New Beh'Ta. This gives you a once in a lifetime experience to meet its inhabitants, solve its puzzles and uncover the secrets of the ancient caves of New Beh'Ta! http://beta.lbp.me/v/z0ff
With all the improvements made to lBP2 and amazing possibilities opened up to designers It is good to see a level that stays true to the LBP traditions while at the same time using the new tools to take the game play and visuals to a whole new level e.g. the use of Sackbots and cut scene cameras to add another level of depth and atmosphere. The way score triggers are used to give rewards to players add another level of game play and replay ability. We like to joke a lot in the QA room about the all important 'art pass' and this level is a great example of an art pass done well. At times it stresses the performance of the game to the limit but it’s worth it to have visuals this good. Finally no LBP level is complete without a good puzzle, this level has three, all of which will tease your brain. Enjoy!