Sackboy (or Sackgirl) is the name of the generic avatar in LittleBigPlanet. The original version of the character, in the prototype Craftworld, was dubbed Yellowhead and, unsurprisingly, had a large yellow head. Sackboy is made of sackcloth and stuffing, with stitches clearly visible at the top of his head, and a large zipper down the front of his/her chest. SackPeople are apparently only 8 centimeters tall. Sackpeople are stuffed with fluff and (believe it or not) ice cream!
He/She is an adorable little guy/gal, and you can move it around through the various worlds and have fun with other SackPeople. The game focuses on its base of simplicity and the controls are minimalist and yet diverse at the same time: The Left Stick makes the Sackperson run left and right, and up and down make it move from the background to the foreground (or vice versa.) The button makes it jump; the longer you press it, the larger the leap is. A quick tap results in a short hop. The R1 button makes it grab things that are made out of Sponge, Polystyrene, Pink or Peach Floaty or Dissolve Material.
You can also tilt its head (or waist by clicking L3) by tilting your controller utilizing the PlayStation 3's unique SixAxis capability, and move the analogue sticks while holding down the L2 and/or R2 buttons to animate the Sackperson's arms. If you hold down the L2/R2 button and quickly snap the left/right stick from left to right or right to left, then the Sackperson will execute a slap. Whenever you slap a nearby Sackboy/Sackgirl, they will flop down onto the ground (leading to quite the tomfoolery after being slapped off a cliff into some spikes). Also, when using the Popit to fix Stickers and Decorations on the Sackperson, you can press L1 or R1 to rotate it 90 degrees, so you can customise its sides and back easier.
Also, for those who want to express their Emotions to friends whilst playing online where text or your voice just won't do the job, you can do. Sackboy has four different emotions, where each has three levels of "intensity"; happiness, sadness, worry and anger. More details can be found on the main article.
The character is customizable, with his skin and attire being changeable, as well as in-game Stickers and Decorations being attachable. As well as the Costumes included in the game originally, there are also extra costumes, most of which are cameos of other videogame characters. To see them go to Downloadable Content!
Sackperson can be killed in various ways; crushed between cramped up spaces, get squashed by a heavy object, blown up to smithereens by explosives, disintegrated by a plasma ball, get electrocuted, dissolved by a horrible gas, get stabbed by a knife, get the stuffing knocked out of them by a spike or shuriken, or even get incinerated by flammable objects. With the addition of the Pirates of the Caribean pack, Sackpeople are now able to drown.
In LittleBigPlanet 2 NPC Sackbots were introduced and they can be fitted with the players costumes and can look exactly like the player's Sack person. In LittleBigPlanet 3, Sackboy now has new friends named OddSock,Toggle and Swoop.
Concept and Creation
YellowHead was very much placeholder programmer art created by Dave for the first playable Craftworld code which was taken up to Sony on that fateful day of the pitch. But although he was merely a stand in, he ended up dictating the proportions of Sackboy, and the things he would need to be able to do. After the team got the go ahead to develop the game, the character needed to evolve into a proper character to fit the game’s developing art style, and so Mark, Francis and Kareem all went to the drawing board and started to concept. For quite some time the character was still called YellowHead and indeed kept the yellow head after which he was named. “I don’t know why but I always drew him with this little mosquito antennae on his head. My designs were always very anatomical, with legs and arms, whilst Francis was exploring body proportions and shapes - how the head relates to the body. It was Mark who was really pushing the handmade look, the buttons, patches, and the hessian fabric.” As Sackboy was reshaped time and time again, it was these handmade aspects that stayed true throughout everyone’s designs. There were three distinct versions of Sackboy shape wise, but you could see the similarities between them too. “We were struggling. But then Dave came along with some doodles, once again bringing a bit of personality and the subtle shapes. It refreshed us all” Dave’s sketches show the arrival of the trapezium head, the attitude, and the wrinkles in the cloth from his expressions. These tiny things were a huge influence on the final design. By now, one of the most distinct features of Sackboy was prevalent throughout all the designs. The zip. These days it’s just a cute feature of the character, but it was not always just for show; once upon a time it had an important function. “There was always a concept of a place where you play, and a place where you build that eventually became the Moon. But at this stage various ideas were flying around - an extra room in the pod, a warehouse somewhere. But then Mark came up with a crazy concept…” “Maybe the place where you go to create is… in yourself. Let’s put this zip on Sackboy, he opens the zip, folds in on himself and goes and creates inside himself, because creativity and ideas are all inside you.” “I’m kind of glad to say that this idea didn’t manifest” laughs Kareem “it’s a legacy part of design, but it makes him really distinct.” From this moment on, Francis took the wheel “we thrust all these designs into his lap and said - ‘make it cool!’” Francis looks bemused, and shakes his head. “Sackboy ended up being a combination of these 4 concepts” Francis pipes up “and you can see it - Mark’s crafty vibe, Kareem’s pinched limbs, the more appealing shape and proportions of my drawings”
Appearances in Other Games
- Sackboy is a playable character in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale. His rival is Big Daddy from the Bioshock franchise.
- A doll resembling Sackboy can be found in The Order: 1886.