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Jak & Daxter

Jak and Daxter reboot photo
Jak and Daxter reboot

Last of Us team initially tried to reboot Jak and Daxter


Then they didn't, thankfully
Oct 03
// Steven Hansen
A new Jak and Daxter game almost happened, courtesy of the team that gave us the excellent, The Last of Us. When the team formed, Last of Us writer and co-director Neil Druckmann explained as part of the IGDA Toronto 2013 ke...
Jak and Daxter photo
Jak and Daxter

Check out this sweet new Jak and Daxter statue


The PlayStation 2 duo immortalized
Jun 23
// Wesley Ruscher
Hey Jak and Daxter fans! If you're not too busy plowing through the recently released Jak and Daxter Collection on Vita you may want to check out this slick new statue complete with artificial grass. Acquiring the license for...

Review: Jak and Daxter Collection (Vita)

Jun 22 // Chris Carter
Jak and Daxter Collection (PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita [reviewed])Developer: Naughty Dog / Mass Media Inc.Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment AmericaReleased: June 18, 2013MSRP: $19.99 (PlayStation 3) / $29.99 (PlayStation Vita) The Precursor Legacy (the first game) is my absolute favorite of the pack. There's something about the whimsical charm of the game's world, graphical style, and characters that really won me over from day one. Although it easily could have been "just another mascot clone," it transcended the realm of borrowed tropes and forged a name for itself. The game is a perfect match of platforming, action, and collecting without any one aspect overwhelming the player at any given time. But there's one major problem with the Vita collection's version of Precursor Legacy -- it suffers a severe drop in framerate from the PS3 version, and has input lag to boot. While the other two games run respectably on Sony's portable, the first game's issues are utterly obvious. It may have something to do with the open-world nature of the game (since Jak II and 3 have lots of segmented areas). Precursor Legacy is still technically playable, but not without the aforementioned headaches. Thankfully, Jak II steps it up a bit and provides a better framerate and no input lag to speak of. It also boasts a darker plot, guns (for better or worse), and severely overhauled gameplay mechanics. It even has elements of Grand Theft Auto in the form of traversing its hub world (Haven City) with flying vehicles. It also goes a step further and eschews the fairly simple difficulty of the original in favor of an incredibly punishing, much tougher challenge. It's reasons like these that made Jak II so polarizing even to this day, but as a general rule I think it's a still a very serviceable platformer that has some interesting, unique concepts, and you have to respect Naughty Dog's desire to innovate. Jak 3 is basically an amalgamation of everything Naughty Dog learned from the first two games. That doesn't necessarily mean it's better -- it just feels a bit different. The visuals hold up far better than its predecessors, and despite the initial barren feeling of the desert Wasteland zone, it manages to present one of the most memorable environments yet. Gameplay-wise Jak 3 mixes it up more than almost any other platformer before it, adding in arena portions, as well as fun minigames and a better racing minigame than Jak II. While I don't like it nearly as much as the first game or the second, it still holds its own and is easily worth checking off a bucket list. Every single person has a different view of each game in the core Jak and Daxter trilogy, and that's one of the reasons that makes it so special. All three games try new things and almost feel like they're not even in the same franchise, which makes this a perfect candidate for a collection given the sheer amount of variety. But not all ports were created equal, and the Vita version simply cannot match up to its PS3 counterpart. Along with the sad news of the under-performing Jak 1 port, there's also a number of other issues with the Vita version of the game. Namely, there is no cross-save functionality whatsoever with the PS3 version, and there is no cross-buy feature unless you own the digital version of either game (although there are reports of users having issues with cross-buy in general). There also isn't any new content to speak of or any Vita-specific bonuses, outside of adding touch-screen controls to the trilogy's sparing mini-games, and mapping L2/R2 functionality to the rear touchpad (which is awkward, by the way). Just like the PS3 version, you can't quit out of a game and re-select another in the trilogy without resetting it entirely. To make matters worse, the Vita version never pushes 60 frames per second like the PS3 collection, and approaches a rate consistently closer to 30 (or lower). Jak and Daxter is an excellent franchise and one of my all-time favorites, but the Vita collection doesn't really do it justice. If you're keen on experiencing these classics, whether it's for the first or fortieth time, it's probably best to wait for either a price drop, or just pick up the superior PS3 version.
Jak and Daxter Collection photo
A naughty port
I have an interesting relationship with the Jak and Daxter series. I went into the first game expecting absolutely nothing, and came away so impressed that I now consider it one of my most beloved platformers of all time. But...

New releases photo
New releases

New releases: Luigi is in charge


Plus Magrunner, Jak & Daxter, and Knights of Pen & Paper +1
Jun 17
// Fraser Brown
With E3 behind us, it's time to get back to playing games that are actually out now. And this week we're being treated to the delightfully unexpected New Super Luigi U. Mario's just a boring old plumber, so it's no surprise ...

The DTOID Show photo
The DTOID Show

The Evil Within, Deadpool, & Legend Of Yoshi's 3D Luigi U


The Destructoid Show wears two Hawaiian shirts at once
Apr 19
// Max Scoville
Well, I done goofed when I was making the thumbnail for this episode. The Evil Inside is not an actual video game. I am dumb. Today's formerly-live Destructoid Show covers the announcement of Bethesda and Shinji Mikami's new...
Jak and Daxter Collection photo
Jak and Daxter Collection

Jak and Daxter Collection coming to the PlayStation Vita


$29.99 for the collection that previously came to the PS3
Apr 19
// Chris Carter
That rumored Vita release of the Jak and Daxter Collection has been confirmed today, at a $29.99 price point. Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy, Jak II, and Jak 3 will comprise the collection, just like the PS3 version. R...
Jak and Daxter photo
Jak and Daxter

Jak and Daxter Collection might come to PS Vita


New ESRB listing suggests a port is in the works
Mar 23
// Tony Ponce
The original Jak and Daxter was a charming little platformer if not a bit derivative. The two sequels were... err... something else, for lack of a better phrase. I enjoyed them nonetheless, and I'm disappointed that Naughty D...

Review: Jak and Daxter Collection

Feb 07 // Dale North
Jak and Daxter Collection (PlayStation 3) Developer: Naughty DogPublisher: Sony Computer EntertainmentReleased: February 7, 2012MSRP: $39.99 Back in the PS2 days I played all three Jak and Daxter games in their entirety, so the Jak and Daxter Collection was like a stroll down memory lane. Well, more like a run through an epic triathalon. I forgot how challenging these games were! Playing them in order, the first game, Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy, eases you into the series, with platforming action gently ramping up to serious trials and some truly unforgiving ledges and edges. I can't tell you how many times I fell down off a high point, forcing me to work my way back up to a dangerous edge. While this was sometimes frustrating, I found it a bit refreshing compared to modern 3D platformers, where it's a bit harder to fall off an edge. The Precursor Legacy has aged surprisingly well for a title that's more than a decade old. The game's focus on item collection and fetch quests is a bit dated, and some of the movement and camera issues from the early days of 3D platforming pop up at the worst times, but overall it was great to see how this fantastic series kicked off.  Jak II came a couple of years later, giving the developers time to ramp up the tech and visuals for this sequel. Playing these two back to back in this collection served to highlight the advances, showing just how fast the developers grew. Naughty Dog seemed to explode with creativity in Jak II, bringing a darker story, deeper gameplay, better animation and glimpses of some of the epic scale we've come to love in the Uncharted series. In the visual department alone it's truly surprising to see how different the first two games are, especially with the HD upgrading this collection brings. In this sequel Jak turns into a sometimes-evil badass that can tap into his newfound darkness to hit harder and move faster. This game also introduces gunplay, and there's a neat interplay between the series' standard combat and some of the innovative new weapons. This all works nicely in the game's dark, futuristic setting, and it helps elevate the series from a standard platforming fare to a varied, open action-adventure experience. The structure of Jak II has the heroes freely roaming a massive city, making for a very sandbox-y, non-linear experience. It's fun to run around and cause trouble, but it's also easy for the duo to get lost, and that can be frustrating. Sometimes the game is so ambitious in its scope that it borders on tedious...until you find your way, that is. And while we're on the topic of frustration, some of the game's many story-based challenges are so difficult that I found myself having to take a 15-minute break to recollect my composure. This becomes a trend that stands even now with Naughty Dog's current games. Jak 3 is my favorite title as it brings a close to the series, bringing with it the most refined gameplay of the three games. It's also the best looking title, with the HD upgrades bringing it up to a level where it holds up nicely against current titles. Many of the game's sections shine with detailed animation running at 60 fps, and the cutscenes were so ahead of their time that with this upgrade they are on par with those of the Ratchet and Clank series. Jak 3 was a great looking game back in 2004, and it's even better in 2012. Naughty Dog went absolutely nuts in Jak 3 with gameplay styles, making sure to throw something new at players at every turn. Multiple types of racing, arena shooting, hunting and even arcade gaming break up the platforming action, and it's all really good. These different types of challenges also provide ample opportunities for new Trophies. Aside from the game's camera following a bit too closely for comfort, all of the varied types of gameplay are so refined that you can't help but be impressed. The insanely high difficulty of some of the challenges rears its ugly head again in this title, but they're worth sticking out. While I'll always love this game, it features what is easily the most frustrating race segment ever in an 3D action-platformer.  Jak 3 is a treat for Naughty Dog fans as it serves as an early glimpse into some of the gameplay and design elements they would eventually bring to the Uncharted series on PS3. You'll see some examples of the brilliant storytelling and dialogue we've come to expect from them, with plenty of cutscenes packed with their trademark humor. Some of Daxter's one-liners had me rolling, and they are great examples of the foundations for Nathan Drake's wisecracking. It's also easy to see several instances of their budding cinematic style and their love for huge event pieces. The whole game is like a preview of what is to come from Naughty Dog, bringing an additional layer of enjoyment for fans of the studio. The 3D option of this collection is a nice touch, though I wouldn't say that those without 3D televisions are missing much, as there isn't any 3D-specific work in these titles. It's just a subtle tweak that adds to the fun. That said, all three games look great in 3D; the increased depth really benefits vehicle segments. The cutscenes also really pop with 3D on, especially in tight head shots. The games have a 3D depth slider option in the pause menu for fine tuning.  One small gripe: While all three games are selectable for play from a main menu, there's no way to exit a game to get back to the menu, meaning that you'll need to quit the disc and go back to the XMB to restart it to select another game. Also, your only 'extra' for this fine collection is a scrolling credits list option.  The Jak and Daxter Collection is a gift to platforming fans, Naughty Dog fans, and gamers in general. For just a bit over $13 a game you're getting the best version of three PS2 classics, each packed with tight platforming, great characters, hilarious dialogue, and a huge range of gameplay styles. And with the HD and 3D upgrades, these games have never looked better. Some of the item fetching of the earlier games feels a bit old, the platforming gets a bit hairy in spots, and segments of too-tough difficulty are hard to push through, but these are small blemishes on what is otherwise a beautiful collection. The Jak and Daxter series still stands as one of the best platformer series ever created, and every gamer should make it a point to play through them.
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Say what you will about rerelease collections, but this one was needed. The Jak and Daxter series contained some of the finest games available on the PS2, and this generation of PS3 gamers may have missed out on Naughty Dog's...

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Naughty Dog considered a PS3 Jak & Daxter, passed on it


Feb 06
// Dale North
The new second team at Naughty Dog is now working on The Last of Us, but before they started on that they "extensively" explored the idea of a PS3 Jak and Daxter game. According to the latest issue of Game Informer the team w...

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