|Viewed:||3D Third-person, over the shoulder||Genre:||
|Developer:||Naughty Dog||Soft. Co.:||SCEE|
||Released:||24 Feb 2012
ScreensAll Screens (9) >>
Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy
The story of Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy goes like this: one day, while exploring the ancient ruins of the forbidden island, your best friend Daxter is knocked into a vat of Dark Eco. This vile substance could corrupt the world forever if it falls into the wrong hands. Dark Eco has the ability to change DNA structure, and unfortunately Daxter is turned into a weasel-like rodent. There is only one person around with the knowhow to get Daxter back to normal, and with this information, the pair set off on their quest.
The first thing that you notice about Jak and Daxter is the quality of the game design. Its immediately apparent that a massive amount of time has been invested in the development of this title. The game worlds, although cartoony, are beautifully rendered and lusciously detailed. The game structure is also refined, the game follows a nice path, challenging and intelligent. The control method matches the visuals. With a little practice, its easy to forget about controlling Dax and get lost in the game world and story.
Jak II: Renegade
So what does one do to follow up on Jak and Daxter? It would have been easy for developer Naughty Dog to just knock out more of the same and have it still sell by the bucket load. Instead however, the company created a much bigger, more immersive adventure that, rather than fall under the genre of 'platformer', reworks it entirely to form something quite unique.
The first thing you'll notice in Jak II is the overall mood - it's dark and much more sinister. Following the events of the Precursor Legacy, J & D find themselves propelled 500 years into the future, whereupon Jak is immediately captured by a tyrannical Baron who, for the next two years, uses him as a guinea pig for dark eco experiments. Consequently, Jak emerges with attitude, aspirations of vengeance, and a new and very welcome penchant for high-powered weapons. Oh, and now he speaks.
Unleashed into a futuristic foreign city, our two heroes begin their adventure. This time around, the gameplay is much less collect-em-up orientated and offers players more of a choice of how to carry out their quest. Within minutes of escaping onto the city streets, you'll begin meeting the game's diverse cast who, more often than not, will provide you with more objectives/missions. In each case it's up to you how you go about it, offering a much more open-ended spin on the proceedings.
The missions themselves consistently vary in style, combining elements of platforming, puzzles, strategy, racing and exploration throughout the game. As mentioned before, Jak now has the use of guns at his disposal, so shooting things/baddies now plays a big part in the game. Also, it's hard not to notice the GTA influence throughout Jak II - a lot of the missions involve similar objectives to Rockstar's crime-em-up, such as obstacle races and rescues, and, more obviously, you can now steal cars to make your way around the city.
In Jak III, one year has passed since Jak and Daxter saved Haven City from Kor and the attacking Metal Heads, yet Haven City is still immersed in deadly chaos as three groups fight for control of the streets. The people of Haven City have grown to distrust Jak's dark powers, and as rumours boil of Jak's ties with Krew and Kor, the city blames Jak for its current woeful circumstances. When the palace is destroyed by a surprise Metal Head attack, even Ashelin cannot protect Jak as the High Council's power broker, Count Veger, forces Jak into banishment for life to the desolate Wasteland. But despite their bitterness and rejection, Jak and Daxter, together with Pecker, soon find themselves embroiled in their final adventure to lay the Metal Heads to rest once and for all.
Beginning in the barren wastelands, Jak 3 'wastes' no time in introducing its latest addition to the winning Naughty Dog formula, off-road vehicles. Akin in some ways to the early PS2 game Smuggler's Run, players will spend much of their time racing across vast landscapes in a competitive manner in order to fulfil the tasks assigned to you. You'll also be given a worthwhile tutorial in how to manoeuvre these mechanical beasts.
It's a welcome addition to Jak 3, but players needn't worry about the absence of platform elements, as later on, particularly when Jak and his cohorts make their way back into city realms, running, jumping and dodging makes a welcome return in gameplay reminiscent of that seen in the debut release. There's nothing really new in this respect, but the final chapter in the series remains remarkably faithful to its roots.
However, Jak has been blessed with a number of new abilities and weapons, the most notable of which is the introduction of light powers. Unlike Dark Jak's offensive capabilities, Jak in his angelic-like state is more helpful in the platform department. Invested in by the powers that be, Jak can now slow down time and even use angel's wings to glide to areas he would otherwise be unable to reach.
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