LittleBigPlanet Server Apocalypse Wipes Hundreds Of Thousands Of PlayStation Players' Creations Without Warning

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Sony has indefinitely decommissioned the PlayStation 4 servers for puzzle platformer LittleBigPlanet 3, the company announced in an update to one of its support pages. The permanent shutdown comes just months after the servers were temporarily taken offline due to ongoing issues. Fans now fear potentially hundreds of thousands of player creations not saved locally will be lost for good.

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“Due to ongoing technical issues which resulted in the LittleBigPlanet 3 servers for PlayStation 4 being taken offline temporarily in January 2024, the decision has been made to keep the servers offline indefinitely,” Sony wrote in the update, first spotted by Delisted Games. “All online services including access to other players’ creations for LittleBigPlanet 3 are no longer available.”

The 2014 sequel starring Sackboy and other crafted creatures was beloved for the creativity and flexibility it afforded players to create their own platforming levels. The game’s offline features will remain available, as will user-generated content stored locally. Players won’t be able to share them, though, or access any data that was stored on Sony’s servers, which likely made up the majority of user-generated content for the game.

While the servers for the PS3 version of the game were originally shut down in 2021 due to ongoing DDOS attacks, the PS4 servers remained open up until January of 2024 when malicious mods threatened the game’s security. “We are temporarily taking the LittleBigPlanet servers offline whilst we investigate a number of issues that have been reported to us,” the game’s Twitter account announced at the time. “If you have been impacted by these issues, please be rest assured that we are aware of them and are working to resolve them for all affected.”

Some players were worried the closure might become permanent. It now seems they were right.

“Nearly 16 years worth of user generated content, millions of levels, some with millions of plays and hearts,” wrote one long-time player, Weeni-Tortellini, on Reddit in January. “Absolutely iconic levels locked away forever with no way to experience them again. To me, the servers shutting down is a hefty chunk bitten out of LittleBigPlanet’s history. I personally have many levels I made as a kid. Digital relics of what made me as creative as i am today, and The only access to these levels i have is thru the servers. I would be devastated if I could never experience them again.”

The permanent shutdown comes as online services across many other older games are retired as well. Nintendo took online multiplayer for Wii U and 3DS games offline earlier this month, impacting games like Splatoon and Animal Crossing: New Leaf. Ubisoft came under fire last week for not just shutting off servers for always-online racing game The Crew, but revoking PC players’ licenses to the game itself as well.

“This is naturally a very sad day for all of us involved with LittleBigPlanet and I have no doubt that many feel the same,” tweeted community manager Steven Isbell. “I’m still here to listen to you all though and will take time over the coming weeks to reach out to the community and listen to anyone that wants to talk.”

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