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Jak & Daxter (PS2)

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      06.09.2009 18:21
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      A smart and slick adventure game

      Jak and Daxter is a great platformer for the PS2, and is made by Naughty Dog, who made the superb Crash Bandicoot series for the PS1. It's a superb game that lives up to the expectations of Naughty Dog, with some astounding visuals, and amazing gameplay. It's got a great degree of sheen and pollish, and a superbly realised artistic style, as well as taking the very best gameplay elements from the best platformers of recent years and combining them into a very fun and exciting package.

      What's arguably most impressive is the degree of free roaming that you can partake in, with a great draw distance, not really much pop in, and a complete lack of loading games most astoundingly. Much like their Crash Bandicoot games, the sounds are inventively rendered, and very distinctive in creating an identity that would be easy recognised in the game's sequel as well. Not to mention, characters will let out some gut-bustingly funny quips every now and then, and the combat sounds are incredibly sonic and unique sounding.

      Also, the game is incredibly well paced and isn't plagued with the problems of numerous other platformers, where you're not sure where to go half the time. However, it also offers a very legitimate challenge - the AI is smart, and the bad guys will stalk you for a fair degree if need be. However, you're equipped with a considerable array of abilities, such as the ability not only to run, but punch, kick, swim, and jump great heights.

      Jak and Daxter is a very original RPG that melds some of the more classic elements of the platformer with its own inventive ideas. With signature visual and aural work that lets you know what you're playing, some clever AI, and challenging gameplay that's never too hard, this is a game that's suitable for audiences young and old.

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      12.08.2009 16:54
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      Must .. collect .. powercells.

      Jak and Daxter is a platforming adventure exclusively developed by Naughty Dog for the Playstation 2.

      The story follows two boys Jak and Daxter, on one of their adventures Daxter manages to fall into a pool of Dark Eco which transforms him into an Ottsel a cross between an otter and a weasel! Naturally he isn't to pleased about this and the games story has the pair trying to restore Daxter back to his original form. There is some good humour in this game with Daxter being hilarious all the way through.

      The gameplay here is like a traditional platformer, you jump over obstacles and pitfalls with your trusty double jump, while collecting power cells (pretty much Stars from Mario, Jiggies from the Banjo games) to open up the next area to you, mix in a bit of combat which includes the famous spinning move that Naughty Dogs last hero Crash had, a couple of rides on Jaks Grav Zoomer to get him from place to place in a hurry for good measure and you have Jak and Daxter!

      There is a bit of variety to the game because of the other Eco (the magical substance that Daxter fell into) you can use to gain various powerups. Red increases attack power, blue activates items in the world and increases your speed and yellow gives Jak the power to shoot fire balls! These Ecos are used creatively in solving the games puzzles and quest to get ever more power cells.

      Graphically this game is colourful and the characters animate exceptionally well especially during cutscenes. Voice over quality is good and the characters will make you laugh out loud at times.

      It doesn't have some of the tricks that the newer Jak games have but it is still worth playing this classic platformer.

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      13.02.2008 18:15
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      One of those minority of games that you just can't help but love every minute of, a must buy!

      When Jak & Daxter: The Precursor Legacy was released early in the life of the PlayStation 2, I can't say I paid it much heed. It's main tagline was that it was from the creators of Crash Bandicoot...not a series I had any particular affection for, and to be blunt it simply looked like a generic 3D adventure game, the kind of disposable nonsense that made up about 50% of the console's library. However, after being assured by several people whose view on games I hold in high esteem, and seeing as it can be picked up for under a fiver these days, I thought I would give it a go - and I'm ever so glad I did.

      The game is set in a world something like a cross between Nintendo's Zelda and the Star Wars movies. Science fiction meets fantasy, but in a colourful, Nintendo-esque fashion. The world is presided over by 5 Guardians, each of whom are masters of a different form of 'eco'. Eco is the energy used to power the planet, and has several different strains. Green restores health, blue improves athleticism, yellow grants the user the power to fire projectiles from their hands and red grants enormous strength. The final strain is what is known as Dark Eco, resided over by Gol, and is generally thought to be uncontrollable.

      Our protagonists in the story are Jak and Daxter, 2 teenage troublemakers who accidentally stumble upon a bizarre ritual on an island, which results in Daxter being doused in Dark Eco, turning him into a strange, ferret like animal. After taking their problem to their local Guardian, he sets them off on an adventure to find Gol and try to cure Daxter. However, as their mission goes on, it becomes clear that there is far more at stake than Daxter's current state of being...

      The game's plot may not be particularly gripping, but it serves it's purpose of setting up the fantastic world in which Jak and Daxter live in, and explain their many quests. The heroic characters, from the speechless hero Jak to his motor-mouth sidekick and the pair's would be love interest Keira are all fun and well designed, looking vaguely, yet not totally anime-styled, though the game's enemies are a bit more bizarre. These creatures, known as Lurkers, are never really explained, and range from giant spiders, biomechanical giants and brutish hulks to little frog things.

      As I mentioned, the game is a 3D Adventure game, a Platform game to be exact, as the majority of the tasks involve jumping based puzzles, but the game also throws in some neat diversions, such as piloting Jak's A-Grav Zoomer (think a Speeder-Bike from Star Wars) or a giant bird named a Flut-Flut. The various Eco powers naturally come in handy, and add a new twist on the old idea of Power Ups.

      The game works in a fashion similar to Nintendo's Super Mario 64, wherein you have a number of stages, each with more than one objective (for example, each stage has a 'Collect 7 Scout Flies' task, but there are variations in the others, finding hidden items, fighting off a cave of enemies etc) to try and earn 'Power Cells' (there are 101 in total) Where the game differs from Nintendo's outing is that the game's levels are not really defined, it's almost like a giant sandbox style platform game.

      While on paper it may not seem to offer much that the countless other 3D adventure titles on the console don't put on the table, unlike so many of those titles, Jak & Daxter is just so well polished and playable that it just feels like a real cut above everything else comparable. The controls are simple, immersive and almost perfectly responsive, while there are many frustrating moments, you never feel like you are being cheated...it simply captures the essence of a fantastic platform game, pick-up-and-play action that kids can enjoy, but with enough depth for older gamers like myself to still find plenty to love in. I'd even go as far as to say Jak's slick gameplay puts it in the realms of the true classic platform games like Super Mario Bros. 3 and Sonic The Hedgehog 2, and it's quite possibly the best PS2 game I've played. Even the vehicular stages aren't repetitive, some involve precision driving, others speed, and others a keen trigger finger...like the main challenges, it's variety, without ever going too 'out there' that makes the game such a joy to play.

      The game also clocks in at an almost perfect length. What makes it work better in this way is that, as in Mario 64, it's really up to you how fast you want to complete it. It's possible to bomb through, collecting only the minimum amount of Power Cells, but to really get the most out of the game, it's advised to try and collect all of the Cells. As I mentioned, the game is also easily playable by kids, and you can actually see that the game has been designed well in that certain challenges are a lot easier than others, making me think it's probably possible to complete the game based on simpler missions.

      It would be a lie to say The Precursor Legacy still looks great today, the early PS2 character models do leave quite a bit to be desired, although the game's cartoony style manages to mask some of this. The worlds look fantastic though. While not exactly original in design (Snow level? Check! Lava level? Check! And so on...) they are wonderfully realised, you can almost feel the chill of snowy mountain or the heat of the lava. While it may not be on par with today's games, make no mistake, for 2001, these levels are spectacular, and I've actually seen much worse in games released later for the console.

      Something rarely mentioned about the game that I feel deserves a great deal of credit is the camera. Dodgy cameras have been the bane of the Adventure game since the inception of 3D games, even Nintendo's Mario 64, regarded by many as the pinnacle of the genre, isn't without it's irritating camera moments. Yet not once in my playing of Jak & Daxter did the camera ever pull any dirty tricks on me and contribute to an unnecessary death.

      The sound still remains very good, even over half a decade onwards. The voices all fit, and the speech flows naturally, making the characters seem a lot more vivid. The music may not be particularly memorable, but in the context of the game it works well. Things are creepy in the Spider-Cave, desolate in the Snowy Mountains and almost Tropical for the pair's beach home.

      While, for a game I enjoyed so much, I don't seem to have been able to write that much about Jak & Daxter, that's actually testament to how good it is. Almost any classic game works so well because it's setup is simple, and while there is undeniable depth to Jak & Daxter, at it's core it's a simple platform game like I grew up with in the 16-Bit era, only the genre has finally been reworked as a total success in 3 dimensions.

      It's quite funny though, when the PS2 launched, it sold hundreds of millions of units simply on the grounds of it being 'cool'. Games like Grand Theft Auto 3 were it's selling points, yet this endearing little fantasy platform title that, could easily have come from Nintendo was probably the undisputed best game the system had in it's first year. It's still fresh and fantastic now, while many of the 'edgy, adult' titles the system was using to sell itself are quite cringe inducing in hindsight.

      I'd recommend Jak & Daxter: The Precursor Legacy to anyone with an interest in videogames. It captures the spirit of Sonic, Mario and all the other great platform games that came before it, but puts a modern spin on it without ever losing touch of this. I've enjoyed it much more than any other game I've played in the past year (including new ones) and can't believe this isn't a household name.

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      • More +
        06.04.2007 15:25
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        Naughty Dog strike again!

        -(Game Information)-
        Name:Jak and Daxter:The Precursor Legacy
        Publisher:Sony Compter Entertainment Europe
        Developer:Naughty Dog
        Genre:3D Platformer
        Release Date:Dec 7, 2001
        Age Rating:3+
        Number Of Players:1
        Online:No
        Developer Site:www.naughtydog.com
        Product Site:www.naughtydog.com/jak1/index.html
        Memory Card Usage:700kb Minimum

        -(History)-
        Naughty Dog are one of Sony's main developers. Their most famous series was Crash Bandicoot, but after the PSone got kicked out and the PS2 was born, Naughty Dog wanted to try a new project, and Jak and Daxter was that. Now Jak is their most famous series, and Naughty Dog are working on a PS3 game called Uncharted:Drakes Fortune and i expect that Jak will make an appearance on Sony's next-gen console in the future.

        -(The Story)-
        The main plot behind Jak and Daxter revolves around Daxter himself. Jak and Daxter are quite a naughty pair and they seem to like to ignore orders given by their guardian-The Green Sage. They decide to got to an island called Mystical Island, which is a island with horrible creatures. As they explore, Daxter falls into a pool of this substance known as Dark Eco. This changes Daxter into this orange muskrat. Jak feels he had some part in the accident, and wants to help him out by finding a cure. This all evolves into a saving the world plot near to the end. It's a good plot, especially for the kids, but it's nothing special.

        -(The Controls)-
        The controls are simple and excellent, as well as responsive. You can move around by either using the Left analog stick or by the D-Pad directions. You can jump by pressing X and double jump by pressing X again. If you want to jump higher you can hold L1 or R1 then press X. Also if you want to crawl you can crouch and then press one of the D-Pad directions to crawl. You can roll by pressing L1/R1 and if you press X after that you can do a horizontal launch, which means you can roll then jump. You also have combat controls. To do a punch you press Square and you can do a dive attack by pressing X to jump then Square to drop onto the ground. Crash Bandicoot's spin attack returns, which you can do by pressing Circle. You can also pilot a number of vehicles, which you can steer by moving the analog sticks in directions. Overall, the controls are responsive and simple.

        -(The Gameplay)-
        Jak and Daxter plays a lot like Super Mario 64, which means a bit of collecting. You can roam around the world, collecting your main item and completing tasks to get them items. The item you collect is Energy Cells. Usually you need a certain amount of Cells to proceed to the next area, for example you'll need 20 cells to add on a heat shield so you can proceed over really hot lava. You also collect Precursor Orbs, which are these Red Orbs which are like your currency.

        The main way to collect Cells are to complete certain tasks. In each area, there are a number of cells to collect. The main way to complete tasks is to simply find them in hidden places, but some need you to do something more complicated than that. Some tasks involve you defeating a load of enemies that ambush you, crossing a cave with tons of spiders and fixing machines that revive your health. Most of these tasks are really fun, but some of so simple they're a little dull. There's another way of getting cells, which is boring. You can pay Precursor Orbs to people and they'll give you a cell. You usually have to pay 90 orbs to get a cell, which is a lot considering that you only get one cell. Plus it feels a bit like cheating as it's an easy way out of finding cells. Finding Orbs are pretty easy as there's quite a lot of orbs around the place. Orbs are certainly easier to find than cells. The final way of getting cells is to find Scout Flies. Scout Flies are theses robots that, obviously, scouted the area but got captured. Your job is to find the boxes that they're being held in and you have to dive attack onto and then they'll be set free. There is always seven flies in the level, and finding them can be a pain, and distracting. Considering you have to find seven for one cell. I found it better to find the flies after the main story. Seeing as you need to find Cells to progress and you need to find Precursor Orbs to find some of the cells, there is some backtracking and collecting needed. This can be boring at time, but the tasks you do to find some of the cells are so fun it takes out some of the frustration. But this isn't a game to get if you don't like collecting.

        There's some vehicles you can use as well, which are this flying hover ship and a bird. You'll mostly use the hover ship as you'll need to to cross over lava to new areas, but you'll use the bird as well to find cells. These vehicles handle well and are a blast to use, as they add variety to the game. There are boss fights in the game, but not many. They're also quite easy (aside from the last one which bumps up the challenge) as most of them need you to figure out a pattern, then repeat it until the boss is dead. Like i mentioned before, more boss fights would of been greatly appreciated, as there's only about 4 fights in total, but these fights can be fun for the time they last.

        Seeing as this is a platformer, you can expect some deadly pit jumps in the game, as that's what the game has. The game has a lot of deadly jumps over pits of lava and other things like that, as well as jumping up to top of cliffs and other things among others. One annoying thing about the game is the lack of checkpoints. You only get warp points in certain places, and more warp points throughout the level would be more helpful. If you die just before you get to checkpoint, you'll have to do the whole section again, even if you were just about to finish the section. Some may enjoy this, while others may tire of it. The combat itself is quite simplistic. You have a number of attacks like a punch, spin attack (as seen in Crash Bandicoot) and other attacks. The enemies themselves mostly die on first attack, though some enemies need more than that, as there's one enemy that needs you to knock an enemy off the top of another enemy then take them out one by one.

        The unique thing about Jak and Daxter is the Eco powers. Though Dark Eco turned Daxter into what he is now, you can use other Eco to help you. There's lots of Eco types, including Blue Eco, Green Eco, Yellow Eco and Red Eco. Green Eco is basically your health packs. There's lots of Green Eco lying around in crates, and if you defeat enemies Green Eco comes from them. if you collect Fifty small particles of Green Eco, or one large particle of Green Eco, you can get a section of lost health back. There's a total of four sections, but one shot from an enemy and you'll lose a section. Blue Eco is like a element of life. It makes Jak faster and controls the enviroment. You can use Blue Eco to smash crates by walking up to them. Also it can be used to activate launch pads, opening doors and release useful objects from closed vents in areas. Yellow Eco gives you the ability to shoot fireballs. This ability is helpful to destroy things like enemies and dark Eco boxes, which you should definately avoid. You can aim more accurately by looking through your goggles, which you can do pressing Triangle and aiming with the left analog stick. This comes in hand in the last boss battle. Red Eco basically makes you more powerful and increases the range of your attacks. All the Eco can either be collected by opening crates and walking through Eco Vents, which gives you a full burst of Eco.

        The difficulty is at about a Medium level, as the platforming jumps make this harder and the lack of health (seeing as after three to four strikes will kill you or if you fall into lava you'll die instantly). But finding the Cells and Precursor Orbs are easy, but the scout flies are harder to find. Overall, Kids may get a bit frustrated with the game and adults will find a challenge in the game as well.

        -(The Graphics)-
        Jak an Daxter is still an amazing looking game, even though it's over 5 years old. Jak takes place in a huge 3D world with lots of sections. These sections are tied together excellently and seamlessly, and there's no loading times when travelling on foot to new areas. There's only load times when you travel through portals, and even these are quite brief, taking about 3-5 seconds. Another impressive aspect is the draw distance, which is amazing. You can see the environment and objects from really far away and they still animate like they would if you were close to them. This is actually really impressive, especially when games released quite a bit after Jak and Daxter like Driver 3 can't accomplish this.

        Also impressive is the effects. You'll see things like Heat blurring, Real Time lighting and much more excellent effects. Though the PS2 isn't the best at texturing, the textures in Jak and Daxter is incredible. All the environments are really colourful and at a high resolution, and there's never a hint of pixelation. But the best thing about the game is the animation, which is incredible. Jak and Daxter themselves animate fantastically, as seeing Daxter trying to hang onto Jak while he jumps around and gets into heavy combat, it never feels awkward and looks realistic. Also every time you get a Energy Cell, you'll see some hilarious animations from Jak and Daxter as they celebrate. These including Daxter dancing like a robot and much more. Also, the game showcases some amazing looking real-time cinemas, and the characters mouths animation are spot on. Also the body animation really expresses the characters feelings. Overall, Jak and Daxter is easily one of the best looking PS2 games ever.

        -(The Sound)-
        Sound is also something Jak and Daxter excels on. The voice acting is class. I don't think there's any famous actors starring in the game, but the actors that do the voices are excellent. Yet, Jak doesn't speak a word at all which, while is a bit disappointing, isn't a huge problem. All the characters in the game sound quite natural. The dialogue is also great. Jak and Daxter tries to go for humor with Daxter as the funny guy, and it succeeds. While the humor isn't a funny as something like Conker:Live and Reloaded on the Xbox, it's still quite humorous, and kids will absolutely love the humor. The effects are also top notch. Jak has lots of walking to do, and his footsteps sound great. They sound different depending on what type of surface you're on. If you're on quite a hard surface, the footsteps will be quite loud, whereas if you step on a surface like snow, the footsteps sound crunchy and not as loud. This is excellent. The music as well is quite catchy. At the beginning of the game, the music is quite similar to the jungle levels in Crash Bandicoot, with a whimsical feel to it.

        -(Replay Value)-
        The main story clocks in at around 15-20 hours, which is pretty long for a platformer, and has quite a bit of value. If you don't collect all of the energy cells on your first time through, you can go back and look for them. There's a total of 100 cells, and by the time you finish the story without focusing on collecting them all, you should have a least 76 of them, leaving 24 to find and that isn't easy. And there's reason to find them all, as you get an alternate ending if youget them all. Finding all the cells after the main story takes at least 5 hours, plus there's loads of precursor orbs to find. You'll be done with the game in at least 30 hours.

        -(Score)-
        Controls=10
        Gameplay=9
        Graphics=10
        Sound=10
        Replay Value=9
        Overall Score=9.6=Outstanding

        -(Ending Comments)-
        I'm not going to lie to you, Jak and Daxter is one of the best PS2 games I've played. It has gameplay, graphics, sound and value, and Jak executes all of these factors extremely well. If you love platformers and somehow haven't played this yet, what are you doing reading this, just run to the store and buy this now! But if you're not into games with a hefty bit of collecting, then you may not like this, but if you don't mind a bit of collecting then you'll spend many days with this.

        -(If You Like This I'd Suggest)-
        Ratchet and Clank
        Crash Bandicoot
        Rayman
        Sly Raccon
        Klona

        -(Where You Can Buy It)-
        Amazon:Original Edition=Used and New from £3.99
        Platinum Edition=£14.97 Brand new or Used and New from £4.25
        I paid £19.99 with Super Monkey Ball (Gamecube) and Oddworld:Munch's Oddysee (Xbox) in a 3 pre-owned games for 2 offer (£9.99 each).

        Thanks for reading.

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        • More +
          22.01.2006 22:46
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          If you like games, get it. Especially if you liked Crash Bandicoot 1, 2, 3 and CTR

          I know that this game is an oldie, but i had the urge to write a review after a pretty boring weekend and thought that i'd do a classic of mine. It really is a shame that platformers are not the main part of the Playstation 2 nowadays. Remember Sonic the Hedgehog, that early platformer that nearly every gamer had back in 1991-1992. Remember Crash Bandicoot, on the playstation, the game nearly every PSone owner had. Remember Jak & Daxter, from the makers of Crash Bandicoot (naughtydog), the game that nearly every PS2 gamer has. No, wait a minute, thats a lie because to be honest, platformers stopped being so popular with the PS2.

          Grand Theft Auto is the game nearly all PS2 owners have now, and that is because it is those type of games that can make use of the PS2. They include wide environments andcan include helicopters and planes, guns and prison, city and countryside. Jak & Daxter is still popular, but no platformer can be like GTA because the traditional platformer had a cartoony storyline, with none or very little guns, and no free roaming that lets you explore the sky.

          However, Jak and Daxter is free roaming. It has not the environment of GTA, no, but you can explore beaches, villages, jungles, volcanoes and snowy regions. You don't really feel the urge to go and just explore without doing a mission like in GTA, but in this game, the levels take you to all of those places. Example, an early mission takes you to a place called Misty Island where you chase and catch someones muse, and animal that inspires someone to do artistic work. You chase it,and unless you are extremely good, you will chase it over a great distance, taking in the huge environment. In GTA, when you chase, its mainly chasing someone in a car aroung the city.

          But you don't even know the storyline yet do you? You play as a guy called Jak. He's a mute, and has very long and pointy ears. He has a vierd dress sense, wearing sandles, and a little furry thing on his back. That furry thing is called Daxter, your little buddy who will crack a few jokes along the way. he is, according to naughtydog an ottsel (weasel-otter). He used to be a goofy little kid though. However, he went to misty island with Jak, and a monkey-like enemy approached them. In the end, daxter falls into a substance known as dark eco and when he is shot up, he is furry. They go back to their home in sandover village, where their 'frind' Kiera lives with her father, a sage who has some power. However, he cannot help and the duo go on an epic journey to try to get Daxter back to normal. At the same time though, evil people are a-foot trying to use eco to get some power and has held all of the other sages captive. what happpens next? You'll have to find out.

          www.Amazon.co.uk-New-£11.97
          Used-£9.00
          www.Play.com- £16.99 delivered
          Gamestation- £10 preowned

          Characters:
          Jak-main character-you only find out about him in the 2nd & 3rd games.
          Keira-Friend of Jsk and Daxter. Into science, which helps Jak through his journey.
          Samos the sage- Keiras dad, knows about eco
          Daxter-jaks best friend, funny, friendly, furry.

          You don't even get a manual for this game. instead you get manual like information, on the back of a map of Jaks world and all of the places you visit, with most of the names having 'precursor' in-items of power. GTA copied this i think (please say id it was in GTA PSone games)

          You start your journey and continue up North starting in Sandover Village, then going to places such as Rock village, boggy Swamp, Fire Canyon, Snowy Mountain and Sentinel Beach, all bringing different suprises. sandover village gives you a climpse3 of the enemies and land, where you first learn about eco, a powerful substance that you can find and use throughout the game.
          There is eco of all different colours:
          Blue-speed.
          Yellow-Fireball abilities
          Red-Increases power
          Green-Health.
          Dark-Touch and your health plummets.
          White-Hear of but don't see. may turn daxter back to human. Only use in final battle.

          There are collectables along the way too. Scout Flies are items that the enemies Gol & Maia have trapped. Free all 8 per place and get a powercell. A powercell is rare, powerful and valuable and are useful to get through certain places and charge up vehicles. You can buy these with Precursor Orbs, egg like items that people will accept for a powercell. You will need many.

          I mentioned vehicles. You will not need powercells to ride flut fluts (bird like creatures) that can glide and attack pretty well. You will, however, need them to ride the A-grav Zoomer, a machine that will let you get over some tough terrain, like lava.

          Now, in the jungle, enemies are plants, snakes, monkey thingies, and piranahs. There is a boss in the temple there that i did not do and only found out when i went to my friends and on his game all of the plants were dead.

          Levels include defeating lots of enemies like monkey like creatures (actually more like purple gorillas with pig like features)that appear throughout the whole game and try to get to the exit of a level to get powercells and precursor orbs so you can get to another place with your A Grav Zoomer and doing some missions for people. There is even a fun fishing game you do early on (you have to do it once at least) where you catch good fish and avoid bad ones.

          It is a game for you even if you do not like platformers that much because it provides a challenge that less and less platformers are doing nowadays, and still being funny. In a volcano, different enemies, avoid lava, in the snow, different enemies, avoid rolling snowballs, misty island, avoin eco and gorillas. It has the huge environment, funny script, and enough characters for all but the most indepth gamers. If you are such a gamer that you find faults even the developers didn't this game isn't for you. If you enjoy games though for their uniqueness, this is for you. Naughtydog have taken all of the goodness of a crash games, and made it freeroaming.

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            08.11.2005 11:35
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            Thrilling 3D Platform Adventure Game

            GAME SYNOPSIS:

            Jak & Daxter - The Precursor Legacy is the first Playstation 2 game to be released by Naughty Dog, the creators of such madcap platformers as Crash Bandicoot.

            This is a 3D platform/adventure game featuring 2 main characters, Jak and Daxter.

            These are really a pair of troublemakers who find their curiosity getting the better of them and travel to the mysterious Misty Island. Here the intrepid duo find themselves caught by the Lurkers, who are trying to take oevr the world. As they try to escape poor Daxter falls into a pool of 'Dark Eco' which transforms him into a ferrety creature called an Ottsel and they have to try and get him changed back.
            To do this they must locate a Sage who has the power, however this is not as straightforward as you might think.

            There are a series of different areas where Jak and Daxter must complete tasks, solve puzzles and fight the evil lurkers. there are also many objects which they must collect along the way, such as Precursor Orbs, Power Cells and Scout Flies.

            PLAYING THE GAME:

            In the game you control Jak. Daxter pretty much just tags along, though as one of your moves you can flip Daxter out to hit objects/Lurkers or capture things.

            You must guide Jak around the various areas beginning with a training facility - Geyser Rock, to help you learn the moves.

            This will teach you about the various items you must collect, which moves you need to perform to complete different kinds of tasks (eg different types of attacks are needed to open boxes etc) and generally how to move about the landscapes.

            You will need an analogue joy pad (the one with the little joystick) to play this game, as the normal movement (walking, swimming) are controlled by the joy stick and attack functions and jumping by the buttons.

            You are also aided from time to time by a character called the Green Sage and his daughter Keira, who give you hints and generally guide you.

            In some cases, multiple areas are accessible at any one time, in fact you sometimes need to switch between them as you may need to complete a task in one area in order to open a task in another.

            There are 16 levels in all (including the training level), with each one taking me several hours to complete (I am currently flitting between levels 7 & 9).

            Some areas cannot be accessed at all without first completing tasks in another area or collecting a certain number of power cells, which I will explain next.

            ITEMS:

            Precursor Orbs: These are egg shaped objects left behind by the mysterious Precursors. They are very valuable and can be exchanged for power cells.

            Scout Flies: A certain number of these are dotted around each zone. They were sent by your allies to try and find information, but have been captured and locked in boxes. If you collect them all you will be given a power cell.

            Power Cell: These need to be collected in order to power up vehicles and open other areas. Some of these can be found dotted around, others you have to earn through trading Orbs, finding Scout Flies or completing Tasks.

            Eco: There are various types of 'Eco' which is a type of energy found lying around in little balls of light or coming out of the ground in vents. There are different types, some which increase your speed, or firepower and Dark Eco which will take some of your life on contact.

            MY OPINION:

            This is a great game! The landscapes are excellent and varied, with numerous tasks and puzzles to keep you busy for ages. You interact with many different characters as well so you have plenty of variation.

            I have to say though, that although this is apparently for ages 3 and up, I found many elements very difficult.
            I think nowadays though young children are very proficient at gaming, so would probably find this less challenging than I did.
            At one stage I got so frustrated with not being able to complete a level I scoured the net for cheats, but found that none of them actually worked! In the end I got someone else to complete it for me (it took him 3 attempts whereas after about 30 I still hadn't managed it).

            It can be quite tricky getting used to the analogue controls if you are used to hitting the buttons all the time, but you get used to it after a while.

            Overall I would recommend this game to anyone. I was going to make the exception of seasoned gamers, however I have seen so called experts play this game and have loads of trouble getting to grips with it, so I think it is fairly challenging and enjoyable for everyone.

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              27.03.2004 03:36

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              Great!!!!! - Advantages: Fun, Great Graphics, Big! - Disadvantages: Ermmmmm.....

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              22.10.2003 16:18
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              It's been a while since I've sat down and consciously played a platform game. While the Tomb Raider series may have been as much about platforming as adventuring, beyond that I would have to cast my mind back to the days of my trusty Commodore 64 and the likes of Jet Set Willy or Monty Mole. Anyone remember those? But in these days of increasingly powerful machines and the constant quest for ever more realistic experiences the platform genre hasn't been too well catered for. The move into 3D games did little to help them while if you're a fan of racing, sport, adventuring, stealth or combat games you'll have appreciated the leaps and bounds that have been made in these areas. A year or two back the platformer appeared to be on a bit of a comeback with the arrival of two games. First up was Jak and Daxter, developed by Naughty Dog who had previously been responsible for the Crash Bandicoot games, closely followed by Ratchet and Clank. I was knee-deep in Grand Theft Auto 3 at the time and, despite some glowing reviews, a couple of platformers didn't seem to hold much interest for me. It didn't stop them going on to achieve a considerable amount of success though. Both games will shortly be receiving sequels with Jak 2 looking particularly promising. Having had my interest in these titles rekindled by the coverage of the sequels I decided to try them out. As luck would have it both have recently become available on the PS2 platinum label at £20 each but wouldn't you know Game was also running a two for £30 promotion. Fate was obviously trying to tell me something so I bought them both. Having decided to tackle Jak and Daxter first, I'll save my Ratchet and Clank op for another day. Jak & Daxter is a 3D-platform game and contains all the elements you would expect to find in games of these types. There are crates to smash for power ups, monsters to avoid and items to collect, in this case
              power cells and little egg-like precursor orbs. But unlike most other platformers this is a much more open game and there is quite a bit of variety in the gameplay. First impressions are a little mixed. Initially it's the graphics that impress. The beautifully detailed if rather cartooney world looks nothing short of amazing, and the animation of not only the characters themselves but also the environment around you is superb. There are glorious water effects, plenty of wildlife, the weather changes and day turns to night. The locations range from volcanic pits to snow covered mountains via an underwater city and without exception they look stunning, Obviously a great deal of effort went into the visual side of things. Then, barely minutes into the game, you feel a rising sense of panic. You begin to wonder if the big brash animations and over the top characters are really meant for a 33 year old. But stick with it and you'll soon find it is suitable for children of all ages. The plot, as it is, centres on two adventurous lads called Jak and Daxter. When Daxter accidentally gets transformed into a ... well ... sort of a cross between a rat and a dog, they have to set out on a journey to track down the one person who can change him back. But as if that wasn't complicated enough they then discover that the person they are looking for is an evil genius who is planning world domination. Aren't they all? OK, so the plot won't win any originality awards but then that's not why we play computer games is it? Initially you start in an area called Geyser Rock and this is simply a training level to get the hang of the controls. Completing the tasks here lead you to Sandover Village and the real start of the game. While there is plenty to explore you'll find certain paths are blocked off to begin with. There are about sixteen separate locations in the game split into five main areas and progress
              ion through them is achieved by collecting power cells. While you might find a couple lying around most are awarded to you for completing certain tasks. These tasks are explained by the various characters you encounter throughout the game and vary from simply collecting a number of precursor orbs (which can be found all over the place) to rounding up a heard of cattle, catching fish or pushing an egg off a cliff. Once you reach a new main area you can activate a transporter, which enables you to quickly hop back and forth between them. This will prove useful as it's quite likely you'll want to return to an earlier area of the game to collect a previously missed power cell. You have a range of moves at your disposal from simple jumps to defensive and attacking moves which help you deal with the nasties you encounter on your travels. You can also power up at various points with energy, known as Eco. There are three types and they allow you extra powers for a short period of time. In addition to this you will occasionally encounter alternate forms of travel in the shape of an anti-gravity zoomer and the large bird like flut-fluts. And this is where the real joy of the game lies. You never quite know what is lying around the next corner. One minute you are wandering along smashing crates and picking up orbs and the next you're flying around a race track on your anti-grav zoomer or fighting off a hoard of nasties in an open arena. There is even a section which takes us back to the days of Donkey Kong in which you have to race up a wooden bridge while avoiding the constant stream of logs rolling down towards you. As I've already mentioned the graphics are superb. The draw distances are among the best seen on any PS2 game. Anything you can see on the horizon will be encountered in the game at some point. But possible one of my favourite features of this game is the lack of loading times during play. Yes, there
              are one or two animations between locations which are used to hide a little loading such as when you hop into a boat to reach Misty Island or use the transporters to jump between areas but for the 95% of the game where you are moving around on foot (or other means of transport under your control) all loading is streamed off the disk while you play. One day all games will be made like this. Control is pretty much the definition of pick up and play. Movement is made using the left analogue stick or the direction pad while jumps, attacks and spins are made using a selection of circle, square and X. The triangle access a first person view mode and while you can't move around in this mode it is useful for getting your bearings occasionally. The main third person view is fairly well catered for with the game camera making a pretty good job of following you around while providing maximum visibility for the obstacles ahead. It does occasionally get stuck in the scenery and sometimes insists on showing you a side on viewpoint when you really want to see what is up ahead but it's quite a simple process to switch to first person view to line up any crucial jumps. Fortunately this doesn't happen that much but it would be nice to think that this is one area which has been improved in the sequel. Soundwise the background music is nothing special but it's unobtrusive enough. Sound effects are fairly good while the voice acting is excellent. Jak doesn't say a word throughout but the various characters you encounter generally have plenty to say. The most vocal of all is Daxter and, although his comments veer from humorous to slightly annoying, the actor responsible does a great job. Inevitably few games are perfect and while Jak & Daxter looks gorgeous and is extreemly entertaining it's time to look at the downside. The main problem I found with this was that the game is rather easy. I finished it within a week and that w
              as only with evening sessions of no more that a couple of hours. This is quite simply unheard of for me. There is no difficulty setting in the game options so you're pretty much stuck with things as they are. Don't get me wrong, it's all very entertaining but I just found it easy. Even the small selection of end of level bosses you encounter are quite easy to dispose of within a couple of attempts. I'm not what you would call a hardcore gamer and I like to take my time and explore the game rather than race through it as quickly as possible. Although you are able to reach the end of the game without completing all of the tasks if you want a rating of 100% you will need to collect all 100 power cells. I did both in under ten hours of play and any game that I can complete that quickly has some serious lifespan issues. A dedicated gamer would easily complete this in a weekend. That's not to say the game doesn't have the occasional tricky section but you'll usually know what is required of you and a little practice will see you through. Helpful tips can always be picked up from the other characters around you so very rarely are you completely stuck as to your next move. You have an infinite number of lives and whenever you die you return to the last checkpoint passed which is never to far away. Fortunately, any power cells collected remain in your inventory since the game updates your memory card each time you collect one. Well done to the developer on removing the frustrating situation of having to redo a very tricky sequence all over again just because you forgot to save your game after gaining a power cell. It's just that although the areas are quite large there are only around half a dozen tasks to complete in each. Since they are not that complicated you are all too soon moving onto the next bit of the game. A bit more to do in each area would be nice. You don't get a m
              ap to help you navigate each area which seems a strange omission although by the time you've completed a couple of tasks you should be fairly happy with the layout. My final complaint would be that unfortunately there is very little replay value. Once you finish the game you approach a door which can only be unlocked by having collected all 100 power cells. If you've missed any you can pop back to complete all the tasks. Upon returning ... well, I'll leave you to discover the ending but you will be disappointed. The point is that when it's over, that's it. Some games give you extra goodies or special codes that unlock various features or new game modes. Not so here. Overall you can look at Jak & Daxter in two ways. It's either a platform game which has moved with the times and expanded to provide loads of variety or it's an adventure game which has tied itself down to the platforming genre with it's constant level jumping, crate smashing, power ups and orb collection. It all comes down to how much of a fan of platform games you are. Although there hasn?t been much in the field recently I do like them and as such thoroughly enjoyed playing this. If you absolutely dislike them then I doubt there is anything here to make you change your mind. To summarise then this is a supremely approachable and very polished platformer which should entertain everyone except those with an intense dislike for the genre. While youngsters or more casual gamers may find this challenging enough for a purchase, the more hardcore players among you will probably be better off hiring it for a couple of nights. It's constantly entertaining although is undoubtedly too short and apart from the odd tricky section or two it's probably a bit easy. At full price I would have probably given this three stars but now it's on the platinum label and I'm feeling gererous I'm going to give it four. Rol
              l on the sequel. Game Information ---------------------- 'Jak And Daxter' by Sony for PS2 1 player Memory card - 700KB min Analogue control compatible: analog sticks only Recommended Age Rating : 3+ Some websites worth a look --------------------------------- Developers site - http://www.naughtydog.com/ Official Website of the game - http://www.jakanddaxterlegend.com Thanks for reading © Nomad 2003

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                07.10.2003 22:28
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                PS2's first classic platformer turns out to be as great to play as it is to look at... Jak & Daxter's story isn't very complex, you play as Jak a young elf-like boy who one day along with his friend Daxter are exploring Misty Island. Weird things are going on at Misty Island and they want to discover what it is. On Misty Island they uncover a sinister plot to take over the lands and they also discover large vats of black goo, Daxter proceeds to fall in and is transformed into a small furry weasel type creature. And so starts the adventure to stop the plot of evil and turn Daxter back, along the way you're going to have to complete challenges to collect Orbs and fly through volcano's on a hovering speeder. Jak & Daxter is a 3D platformer and a damn good-looking one at that. Lots of detail every where you look and everything is fantastically textured and lovingly created. Each of the levels are unique in style and theme and the hub levels feature a similar amount of detail and a few characters scattered about for good measure. Ex-Disney animators worked on Jak & Daxter and you can easily tell from the style and appearance of the characters you will encounter, it's hard to describe but you'll know it immediately. The crowning achievement however is the masked loading times, which are hidden so well you will never know abut them giving the appearance of zero loading. You can literally see other levels from high vantage points. Characters themselves are well animated and Jak has a large repertoire of moves at his disposal some of which can be chained together to get more distance from jumps and to kill enemies with more health in one go. The game also sounds greats, the music is mostly lots of drum beats and bongo sounds along with some great and very funny voice-acting which is suited to the characters and never annoying mostly because it isn't overused unlike in other games, Daxter especially deserves praise
                for his large amount of one-liners which, quite surprisingly, will not irritate after only a few minutes. With all that out of the way I can concentrate on the gameplay. Throughout the game you will receive many different challenges and small quests to gain Orbs which are required to open doors and power your A-Grav Zoomer (a hovering bike used to traverse ground at great speeds). No two quests are the same and some include small mini-games, quests can be anything from having to catch an extremely quick animal, to hatching a bird from an egg such is the variety of the game. Also in need of mention is the Zoomer, this is one of the best things the game has to offer as it can be used on land and sea, performing powerslides and ski-jumps while dodging trees and killing enemies. It can only be used in some places but it's used enough so that you're not left wanting more of it and you can redo the areas any time you wish to play with it again. The game also controls well, Jak is very responsive and this, along with excellent collision detection, means you can never really blame anything but yourself for getting killed. It's also worth pointing out that you have infinite lives so getting killed will only put you back to the last continue point in that level which can be annoying in some areas but then the game wouldn't be any challenge if you were completely invincible. The games camera is good and I never once noticed it getting stuck or swinging aimlessly around the characters so the developer did a good job here that most seem to forget needs real attention. There is some bad to this though Orb quests cannot be replayed meaning that once you've finished something, it's gone forever which is a great shame as some of the quests would have been worth doing again. Leading onto the second bad-point, the game is very, very short and a little too easy, even collecting everything will only take a couple of days and the ending only l
                eaves more questions. Jak & Daxter could have also benefited from some side-quests or something similar that could be done as many times as you wish as it stands there is only one race for the A-Grav Zoomer that can be replayed to beat your best time, more things like this would have lengthened the game and added replayability. The bosses are also an interesting diversion but there is only 3 in the game, more would have been welcome especially seeing as many of the levels are shouting out for bosses such as the Spider's Cave which could have had the obvious choice of a giant spider for a boss, other levels are in a similar position to this. Despite this, the game is well worth playing and a definite classic for the PS2 if it was only slightly longer or featured the option to replay some or the Orb quests then it may have had more replayability, as it stands Jak & Daxter is a great platformer well worth owning for any platform fan out there.

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                26.04.2002 02:01
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                Jak & daxter is the first really good platformer to apppear on any next-gen system. You should know what to expect from naughty dog, the makers of the original crash bandicoot games (crash 1-3) and im very pleased to say that this retains all the charm of the crash games. You play as Jak, running around trying to find a way to return your friend daxter, who got changed into a weasel, into his original form. Shortly into the game, you discover that some sages have been kidnapped, and so develops the silly universe saving idea. You know the drill, a standard story in platformers that is totally outlanish and noone ever cares about, its still here and you have to rescue the sages from the final area to (surprise, surprise!) save the universe. The game consists of five main areas, and some links provided by flying over lava in a plane called your A-grav zoomer. more on that later. The main areas are nice british style unspoilt grass and trees etc, rock village which has various rocks which are on fire on the grassland and a massive area of water, a lava land with lava and so on, with some nice detours into a snowy mountain and dark caves, along with the final area a citadel with moving platforms and lots of very tall heights. Hes a very agile felow our jak, and can do double jumps, rolling jumps, spin attacks and punches. The game is now in "true" 3D with massive open areas to explore, unlike the crash series "fake" 3d with linear paths based along long stretching walkways where you just move up and down and side to side. This gets you in a real sense of immersion in Jaks world, and what makes it even better is the idea of no loading. yes, you heard right there is NO loading, the next bit loads whilst you are playing! pure genius. This all creates an atmosphere where you feel like you ARE jak in jaks functioning world, you feel like you are inside the console. that is pure genius developing from naughty dog. The game feels seemlessly
                integrated as just one gigantic level than a collection of levels like other platformers. In one point, there is a platform which seems impossible to get to. In fact, all it takes is going there at night (yep the game has day and night too) and the tide level has gone down, and you can make the jump! like ive said before, pure genius! This quality never lets up, although the last levels do not acheive this affect perhaps as much as the earlier ones. It is great fun, is intelligently produced, the graphics are excellent and is very immersive. But why not a 5 star rating then? Well, the quest is fairly linear, with all areas reveolving around "get a certain number of power cells" (things you collect in the game, by finding them, completing tasks, trading eggs for them or helping people in the villages) to power your plane to advance to the next area, with some places a boss in the middle for good measure. But this matters less as tasks in the game, and indeed the games areas themselves are so varied and would not make me lower the score by a whole star. The real reason for me lowering the score to four stars is that it is MUCH too short and too easy. What is there is of the highest quality, and whilst you will be inclined to complete it twice or more times, there are no unlockables at all to keep you playing. The actual game is only about 10 hours to complete, with extra required to play the other levels you may have missed on the quest to advance in the game. However, this does not drop it two stars (being as short as this is is a serious handicap) as the game is mainly only too short as it is too easy. But in a way this helps to complete total imersion in the game, with you hardly encountering problems or dying at all. To conclude, this is one of the best games on the PS2 and WELL worth a purchase, but is too short and haters of platformers should steer clear. Apart from these imperfections though, this is one of
                the best platformers ever, even when up against mario, and should warrant a place high up on the "PS2 wish list" for everyone except for those short of cash or platforming game haters.

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                  18.04.2002 08:42
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                  I've had a PS2 for some while and haven't really got what I expected from PS2 games. Yeah the graphics are better but I want more. I think Jak and Daxter is a step in the right direction. The auto loading feature is bliss compared to a lot of games with good graphics that seem to take an age to load. Not only that, but you can see for miles and really have a good look around. The game play is good and the characters are witty. There are a few tricky bits to play. The last level has an annoying lack of views and you really can't see everything you need to but this may be part of the 'fun'. The characters have a good sense of humour and although some of the levels have similar features things are not always what they seem. The ending was disappointing after collecting all the balls of light you still don't get to see what's behind the door. Actually it as really annoying!!! But I wait eagerly for the next installment. I would recommend this game because you get to play mini games and there are all different types of things to learn. The auto loading feature is a great plus, the graphics are good and it made me laugh and cry with frustation and joy!! So go get it! what you waiting for?!! Did I mention the auto loading feature? :0)

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                    26.03.2002 04:33
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                    Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy is brought to us than none other than 'Naughty Dog' the creators of Crash Bandicoot. They chose to leave the development of the (not a big enough leap) new instalment of the Crash series to someone else while they set about this 3D roaming/platforming masterpiece. The premise of the gameplay is simple enough - Daxter has been turned into a furry sidekick and it's up to Jak (your character) to collect the Power cells to progress to the different islands/game areas and ultimately rescue Daxter from his furry fate. Daxter pokes fun and delivers punchline after punchline in this comic adventure. Jak ever the straight man plays out the whole game without ever uttering a single word - I guess he's the strong silent type? Anyway the game sets off at a reletivly slow pace and introduces you to the exquisite controls. There is no wrangling around with the analogue sticks as Jak does precisely what you want when you want. The camera is also very well behaved and does not suffer from the flaws sometimes found in this genre. The animation is nothing short of Disney with the movements of the characters lovingly directed as if motion captured from life. Some of the dying/saving sequences are truly a joy to behold. So too are the landscapes that vary greatly from area to are rolling from green hills of 'Sandover Village' to the snow capped rocks of 'Snowy Mountain' and on into the gloomy depths of the 'Spider Caves' to name but a few. The gameplay largely involves solving problems of the local inhabitants such as capturing the Sculptors pet Muse and returning it safely. The completion of said missions rewards Jak with much needed power cells of which there are 101. Some of these missions merely involve exchanging a number of orbs that can be found scattered/hidden around the area. These tasks encourage exploration and in turn reveal new areas and missions.
                    The games structure leaves this kind of exploration in your hands - you are completely free (within reason) to complete the tasks in any order you please. You can even choose to work on several simultaneously. Some paths will be blocked until you have enough power cells to pass, but beyond this you are free to choose. One of the most remarkable features of this game for me has been talked about little, which I find amazing. The game does not contain a single loading sequence once you commence play. Never are you wrenched from the virtual world by those dreaded 'Loading Pleas wait...' words. The game simply streams constantly off the DVD. Whilst maybe seeming like a small point this adds immensely to the involving nature of the game. The different locations are well designed and atmospheric each having its own inhabitants and carrying it's own soundtrack which both add tremendously to the feel of the game. One criticism that is to be pointed at Jak and Daxter is that it is way too short - and there is little instant re-play value to be found. True I may re-visit it after some time but for now there are many more AAA titles demanding my attention. So all in all an excellent game, great graphics, sound and gameplay seamlessly woven together with exquisite animation and character design all make up a very entertaining title. Don't be put off by thinking that this game is too young or childish for you - believe me it's not and if you miss it because of that - well that's your loss.

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                      19.03.2002 19:26
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                      Naughty Dog without a doubt packs some of the most creative squad of developers on the videogaming front. They've come to rival legendary developers such as Rare, Konami of Japan, and NeverSoft to every single extent. Naughty Dog started out small; two 16 year olds by the names of Jason Rubin and Andy Gavin. First came a weird Apple Mac skiing game, and then afterwards came a Panasonic 3DO game called "Way of the Warrior". After the demise of the Panasonic 3DO, Naughty Dog was signed by Sony to develop games for their console under Sony's publication. Here is where the Crash Bandicoot franchise was brought to life, and as they say, "the rest is history". Today, Naughty Dog is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony, as they were bought out by the console maker, and remains to be one of the most lucrative development teams in the industry. When Naughty Dog announced that they would no longer be developing Crash Bandicoot games, they added to the statement that they are building an adventure title of all adventure titles. This game is set to redefine the platforming/adventure genre like no other game has before. Touted as Project Y, Naughty Dog would keep their game extremely under wraps and wouldn't let a soul outside of the offices know about it, including the press. Oozing in anticipation of things to come, Naughty Dog would tease me of their newest project by sending me cards with the figures of the two characters' shadows. Looking at the copyright material, I found out the name of this game is "Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy". The game would shortly debut at E3 and stun the press with its unbelievably vivid visuals. Naughty Dog's first PS2 project was gorgeous; on top of that it was an all-new kind of adventure game with free roaming environments. This is single-handedly the most open and diverse adventure atmosphere since Super Mario 64. To be frank, Jak and Daxter's freedom puts Mario's freed
                      om to shame. In other words, Jak and Daxter's world does not consist of level portals that you have to enter. You've got one set environment that is continuous and has no "stages" or "levels," just progressive exploration, by land, sea and air. Jak and Daxter has finally seen the light of day in the US, and I couldn't be any happier with what Naughty Dog has delivered. Visually, Jak and Daxter is an effervescent title that leaves almost nothing left to be desired for. Naughty Dog's skilled developers have done wonders at creating an evolving world that features various time of days, such as sun-light, afternoon, and night time, all in real-time. The polygonal environments are never redundant and feature nothing but the highest quality of texture designing. They are high resolution and silky smooth textures that I've only seen in games like Final Fantasy X, Metal Gear Solid 2, ICO and Devil May Cry. The worlds are truly lush! Screenshots do not justify the visual spectra of Jak and Daxter. To sum up the graphics in a sentence, I would have to say that: Jak and Daxter's world is like the perfect tropical juice; it's filled with vibrant colors and tastes sweet. Of course you can't taste color, but your eye certainly can -metaphorically speaking of course-. This game shimmers from some of the best landscape and background detail, it truly is a breathtaking feat to behold and witness. The landmass of Jak and Daxter's world is huge, but the draw-in distance remains unbounded. Despite being a continuous and progressive world, there is absolutely no sign of draw-in or pop-up. Climb a high structure and look around, even the farthest island can be seen! It's an extraordinary sight, something you're not common to find in future adventure games. Jak and Daxter's character detail is superb, the details are all there, and the polygon counts are surely in the thousands. The motion animations for J
                      ak are stunning and smooth! Running at a crisp 60 frames, the motions are well executed and feature a slew of detail not seen in an adventure game before. Jak's feet had been perfectly optimized for the analog sensitivity. The actual impact of his foot to the ground is perfectly coordinated with not only the sensitivity, but the footstep sound effect as well. He actually looks as if he's walking, and not moon walking. Jak and Daxter is certainly one of the most gorgeous, bright and vivid videogames to date. The sheer amount of detail is mind numbing, and at the same time so pleasing to look at because of the vivaciousness. Not even words can really describe the beauty of Jak and Daxter. These are some visuals that'll surely take a lot of effort to out do, whether it's an Xbox or GameCube title. To make sure that this is downright the best damn adventure game ever; I took time and thoroughly replayed incredible adventure and platform games like Super Mario 64, Zelda 64, Ape Escape, Crash Bandicoot: Warped, and Sonic Adventure, in order to come down to the final conclusion that Jak and Daxter is hands down, the single best title of its kind. The gameplay is an extraordinary hybrid of traditional platform/adventure gameplay, a'la Super Mario 64 and Zelda 64, with elements of puzzle solving, reflex testing, humor and best of all fun. No other adventure game offers so much variety in a simple package. Jak and Daxter is a superb adventure game with an assortment of fantastic inclusions to adore. The gameplay as a whole is pretty much flawless. J&D features some of the most innovative aspects of exploration, as of course you are set on one massive environment, that has multiple levels of accessibility, time progressive environments (sun rise, sun set), and some overall excellent execution. Jak and Daxter is the ideal adventure game. It's incredibly entertaining, amusing, and is filled with a pleasant dose of lighthearted comedy. Jak and Daxte
                      r are best of friends, Daxter is the annoying, cowardly, and yet laugh out loud funny character, while Daxter is the brave, silent cliché type character (think Mario and Crash Bandicoot) who doesn't have time for words. Despite resembling a Dragon Ball Z character, Daxter is a very cool character with a nice set of moves to use against his enemies. Naughty Dog has retained the classic spin move, but Jak doesn't do it as ferociously as Crash used to do it. Instead he spins about twice and uses one of his legs. Aside from that, Jak is also able to roll (extend it to a Lion-like leap roll), punch, uppercut, high jump, double jump, hang off of ledges, do a head butt dive and more. Daxter is not a playable character in the game, as he is only present for comedic merit. But it is actually his role that really starts their adventure in the first place. One day, Jak and Daxter were exploring a ruin they came across at Misty Island. Both of them found a pool of Dark Eco, and as soon as that happened an enemy approaches both of them. Jak attacks the enemy, and after he defeats it the explosion caused by the enemy sends him hurling backward hitting Daxter to his fall into the Dark Eco. A few seconds later he crawls out, only to notice moments later that he had been turned into an Ocel (a half Otter half Weasel, as Jason Rubin describes it). Both Jak and Daxter head off to see the Green Sage for his advice. What needs to be done to bring Daxter to his regular form once again? And so the journey begins here. Jak must initially collect 20 power cells in order to give them to Kiera (an accomplice of yours) so that she can power up her A-GraV Zoomer device for you to explore other islands with. You can find power cells scattered across the land, trade a certain amount of precursor orbs with various civilians, help out those in need of help, defeat a boss and etc. There are many ways to get power cells, but the aforementioned tend to be the most common. There are man
                      y things to collect in Jak and Daxter, such as the already established power cells and precursor orbs, as well red eco power ups, blue eco power ups and yellow eco power ups. The red eco is fire based that increases Jak's power and attacks. The blue eco increases Jak's speed, length of jump, can open locked doors that need to be activated by the blue eco's power, magnetically attracts precursor orbs that are around you (including in boxes), and allows for various structures to be utilized such as the electrical charged super jump pad. The yellow eco lets Jak shoot fireballs at enemies and also allows him to target them via first person view. Jak and Daxter allows the gamer to explore lands on either a hover like craft called the A-GraV Zoomer, or a cute Chocobo-esque looking feathered friend "Flut Flut". If you become akin with Flut Flut, she will allow you to saddle up and ride her across the terrains or jump to generally out of reach areas. Naughty Dog had boasted about how smart the AI in J&D is, and indeed this game has the most realistic baddies around. They react to your presence, so if you are loud while approaching them, they'll spot you, otherwise if you tend to sneak up there's a chance they won't. It's the little things that make the gameplay so involving and not just run and jump. Jak and Daxter is able to perfectly separate itself from the crowd of today's generic platform/adventure titles such as Super Mario 64, Donkey Kong Country 64, Luigi's Mansion, and etc. As an adventure and platform game Jak and Daxter is right up there with the cream of the crop such as Ape Escape, Klonoa 2 and Zelda 64. There's a whole lot more to be said about what is certainly the best adventure game on a console or PC to date. Naughty Dog has sculpted a piece of software no other developer has been able to produce, and my hat goes off to Jason, Andy and the gang! With visuals as lively as they are, surely you&
                      #39;d all expect to hear some of the best sound effects. That's exactly what Naughty Dog delivers! Jak and Daxter features some superb ambient sound effects, complete with individual footstep sounds for when Jak is walking on water, grass, soil or rock. Little details like that can be quite noticeable if you pay attention to them. The background sound effects also include bird chirpings, the sound of trees swaying through the air, and the water gently riding on to shore and back. This game makes fantastic use of the PS2's sound capabilities, as well as featuring excellent voice acting. With the usage of the DVD format, Jak and Daxter's voice acting is precise and never hesitant. Everything streams off of the disk flawlessly. Daxter, providing the comedic relief, has a very amusing voice that is ideal for any cartoon character. He is somewhat reminiscent of "The Lion King's" Timone. In fact, I'd say that the Naughty Dog crew drew some of its inspiration from the character and used it to create Daxter. The game's soundtracks work side-by-side with the environments, as the music plays accordingly and fittingly to your surroundings. If you're in a jungle area, a more jungle like beat will play, if you're around a tropical area, with a beach and whatnot, something more tropical and lively will play to accompany you on your journey, and it works like this throughout the game. Jak and Daxter's audio is every bit as pleasant as the game itself. It creates a deeper atmosphere, and makes the tropical and exotic settings seem more organic. Moving around and exploring a game as huge as Jak and Daxter needs controls that are above bearable, not sewn together like a patch on a pair of worn out jeans. Naughty Dog has always done fantastic jobs with their control layout for all of the Crash games, especially Crash Team Racing. So it's no surprise that Jak and Daxter is indeed a fantastic controlling game that makes great use
                      of the Dual Shock 2's sensitivity. Jak features many speeds of walking, all in full correlation with the left analog stick's position. As I stated earlier, J&D features a broad list of moves to do with Jak. The lay out of the buttons is perfectly done and shouldn't bother anybody the least bit. The Dual Shock is well supported, as it will rumble when necessary, including during moments where Jak's heart is pumping because of tension or excitement. To top it off, the right analog stick acts as the camera rotator, which can come in handy at times. Overall, tight controls with nothing to complain about. In the end, there's only one way to conclude this review, and that's by simply restating the traits that make Naughty Dog's Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy the best adventure/platform game to date. No other adventure title will impress you as much as J&D does. No other adventure title features an atmosphere as gorgeous, as vibrant and as exuberant as J&D does. No other adventure game comes close to achieving the same level of detail in every single technological field of Jak and Daxter. The sound is crystal clear, as it features some fascinating ambient effects, incredible music and perfect voice acting. This game is jammed with replay value, as it'll take nearly 20 hours to complete with everything at your hand. Even after you've done that, you'll feel an urge to play Jak and Daxter through all over again. It's an addictive nature that this game possesses, as it sucks you in, almost like Super Mario Bros. 3 did. Playing Jak and Daxter, you'd better make note of the clock, because at times the minutes seem to just melt away. I've stated it numerously already, but there's no doubt in my mind that Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy is the best adventure/platform title across any console or any other piece of hardware. Make sure this incredible title is in your hands or hope it's under your tree co
                      me this Christmas, or somewhere around your Menorah around Chanukah time.

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                        08.02.2002 21:57

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                        From the makers of the smash hit CRASH BANDICOOT 1,2,3. Here is Jak and Daxter. And here a opinion to tell you whether this game matches up to the high expectations set by the Crash Bandicoot titles. The graphics in Jak and Daxter is the first thing that will catch your eye. They are smooth, lush and polished well to make a cartoony, surreal world look realisted and believable (like in Shrek). The animation sequences are suberb and unlike anything you will ever see. The gameplay adapts form the best platform games ever to make a new innovation. Whilst being a platform game at heart, the free roaming you can do in a large environment without any loading times is like an RPG game. The gameplay is fast and furious, and as you progress through the levels the game gets harder. The AI is very clever. Baddies will follow you, surround you, and attack in packs. Daxter is the character you control and Jak sits on his shoulder. Daxter can run, jump, kick, punch, swim and fish. You can also look around in the game through the eyes of Daxter. The sound is impeccable. The sound effects are imaginative whilst the background music fits perfectly to each scene. And as a bonus to the sound, the loveable character Jak, makes hilarious wisecracks throughout the game. He's not the only one too. Other characters you will meet have something funny to say. Overall, Jak and Daxter delivers something new whilst using the old styles of gameplay that we will always love. Jak and Daxter is original, and that's what will make this action-adventure a great RPG and a platform frenzy! Thanks for reading my opinion on Jak and daxter.

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                        14.01.2002 02:57
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                        • "that's all"

                        Over the Christmas period, as always, there has been a flurry of new titles for nearly every system. For Playstation 2 this was a revolution as there had never been so many top quality titles released for it in one month. Alas, amongst all of the confusion and excitement a number of titles were sorely overlooked:one of them being Jak & Daxter: The Precursor Legacy. Jak & Daxter (J&D) is a platform adventure game similar in style to titles such as Super Mario 64, Zelda and Banjo Kazooie. It also shares similarities with a certain Crash Bandicoot, which comes as little surprise considering the same people responsible for the first three Crash games developed it. In light of these relations it would be easy to dismiss J&D as being another generic platformer where the player collects stuff and jumps big gaps. Actually it's exactly like this but there are so many things that set this aside from any platformer you'll ever have played before. The first thing that you'll notice is how good the game looks. The visuals in this game are genuinely stunning and far surpass those on any other platform game on any other system. The worlds that you will visit are lush and simply ooze detail and organic design. Waves ripple and waterfalls cascade beautifully down mountainsides. Another well-realised effect that will blow you away is the heat haze that emanates from torches etc. It's just wonderful. Then there's the viewpoint. Importantly, J&D features a rotatable camera system, which the player can rotate should they disapprove of the default view they've been given whilst trying to jump to that tricky ledge. What's also great is the fact that you can see for miles, and what you see is there, it's not a drawing pr pre-rendered backdrop, it's there; and you can be too. Another area where this game shines (or indeed chimes) is the music and effects. The sound department have managed to achieve a soundtrack that
                        hits the nail right on its little head. It's a perfect blend: not orchestral, not kiddie, just right. Sound effects are perfect and very realistic given the games cartoon nature and the ambient sounds are well realised. It's all varied as well, with new styles evident in every new area you uncover. The most surprising aspect of the game is probably its story. In fairness it's not Final Fantasy quality, what it is though is original and involving and it really helps to explain and justify all the collecting and finding that you have to do in the game. It's based around two young boys (Jak and Daxter). One day they decide to go and explore a forbidden island where Daxter falls into some evil goop and gets turned into a talking weasel thing (naturally). So the two have to find a bloke called Gol Acheron who is the only person with the knowledge of how to turn Daxter back. Unfortunately, Gol is actually busy with evil plans to conquer the world and so on and so forth. Almost all of the main characters have a personality depth uncommon in this genre and all help to progress the story in there own way. It's not hard to see that a great deal of time has been invested in developing these characters, and you're almost sure to enjoy witnessing their exploits. What you have to keep in perspective is that J&D is a platform game, so gameplay is paramount to its success as a game. Luckily this really is a great game to play, especially taking into consideration all of the games better features. The controls are responsive and intuitive and judging distances is easy. Unfortunately this is a mixed blessing as it makes the game simple to pick up and play but at the same time makes it a little too easy. For most people it'll only take a week to complete and advanced players could likely manage it in a weekend, although there are a great number of side-quests and mini-games. Overall this is a brilliant game. It's
                        thoughtful and inventive. It has an immersive storyline, great sound and visuals and characters with an impressive level of depth to them. That means that the games' only shortcoming is the fact that it's a little too easy and short as a result of this, but who cares? The real tragedy of this game is that the public, almost to a criminal extent, has overlooked it. It appears that people are more interested in Crash Bandicoot despite the new game being a far inferior and far less enjoyable fare. J&D represents the next step in platforming games and offers fresh, new material, but perhaps people aren't ready for that yet, I mean the new Crash Bandicoot game has got...er...oh well. Buy this game for heavens sake! It's great!

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                      • Product Details

                        Jak & Daxter is a 3D platform adventure from the creators of Crash Bandicoot.