Jak and Daxter
|Jak and Daxter|
The logo for the series
|Developers||Naughty Dog (2001-present)
Ready at Dawn (2006)
High Impact Games (2009)
Nihilistic Software (2011)
Mass Media Inc. (2012)
|Publishers||Sony Computer Entertainment America|
|Platforms||PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita|
|Platform of origin||PlayStation 2|
|First release||Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy
December 3, 2001
|Latest release||Jak and Daxter Collection
Jak and Daxter is a critically acclaimed and commercially successful video game franchise created by Naughty Dog Inc. There are three games in the main series and also three spin-off games which are considered to be part of the main series storywise. The games have been released exclusively for the PlayStation consoles.
The games are considered story-based platformers, which include many puzzles and platform elements, in conjunction with avoiding enemies and other obstacles, as well as using an array of different weapons and vehicles. Set on an unnamed planet, the games follow the two protagonists, Jak and Daxter, as they try to unlock the secrets of their world, and discover the mysteries left behind by the Precursors. The series consists of many differing and unique locations both in the future world and past, which include jungles, deserts, mountainous terrains, villages and metropolitan cities.
The original trilogy was re-released on the PlayStation 3 as part of an HD collection, that included 720p high-definition with crisper visuals, smoother gameplay animation and full stereoscopic 3D, along with support for the PlayStation Network trophy system. The transfer was handled by Mass Media Inc. with Naughty Dog assisting with the conversion of the games.
|2001||Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy||PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita|
|2003||Jak II||PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita|
|2004||Jak 3||PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita|
|2005||Jak X: Combat Racing||PlayStation 2|
|2009||Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier||PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable|
|2011||PlayStation Move Heroes||PlayStation 3|
|2012||PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale||PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita|
|2012/13||Jak and Daxter Collection||PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita|
Gameplay features 
The Jak series is primarily a story-based platformer presented in the third-person perspective. The player can explore a multitude of different areas in an open world environment, and is able to collect hidden Precursor Orbs, which are usually difficult to reach, to unlock cheats in the "Secrets Menu". Power Cells were required to advance the story in The Precursor Legacy and could be obtained by completing mission for the locals or finding them on Jak's travels. Completing story related missions unlocked new locations in subsequent titles. Both characters can double-jump and perform several melee attacks, while Jak can manipulate a substance called Eco, which provides the player with improved abilities, such as increased speed and more powerful melee attacks. The use of Dark Eco was introduced in Jak II and Light Eco was added in Jak 3. They appeared as a form of currency in The Lost Frontier due to their rarity, but could not be used for combat as they were unstable.
Shooting elements were introduced to the series in Jak II, with the addition of the Morph Gun. New mods became available as the game progressed, and include the Scatter Gun, the Blaster, the Vulcan Fury, the Peace Maker and ammo capacity upgrades. More mods were introduced in Jak 3 and was replaced with a customizable Gunstaff in The Lost Frontier. Daxter also became a playable character in Jak II, and featured in several Crash Bandicoot-esque missions to gain access to hard to reach places. The Lost Frontier introduced Dark Daxter, which take place in the city sewers.
Jak had access to a Zoomer in The Precursor Legacy and was used primarily for crossing mountain valley's and volcanic craters. A large bird-specie known as the Flut Flut was also available for transportation, but could not fly long distances due to its height and weight. Driving became a core ingredient in Jak II with the introduction of hover vehicles and a jet board. This was expanded upon in Jak 3, with several off-road Dune Buggies becoming available for navigating The Wasteland. In The Lost Frontier aerial combat was also integrated into the series, acting as a core gameplay feature, and Jak could purchase several types of customizable airships.
Jak X: Combat Racing and Daxter deviate significantly from series traditional gameplay style. The gameplay mechanics of the series were changed for Jak X, and modeled solely on the driving system used in Jak 3, and features many types of combat vehicles. Daxter features dream sequence minigames which take place in scenes from films, which include The Lord of the Rings, Indiana Jones and The Matrix. He also has access to a scooter, an electronic bug-swatter and a spray tank as he explores Haven City doing jobs for the Kridder Ridder Extermination Company. Several extras can be unlocked for Jak X and Daxter by linking up the save files from the two respective games, and several player skins can be unlocked if the player has save files from The Precursor Legacy, Jak II, Jak 3 and Ratchet: Deadlocked.
Major characters 
- Jak - Jak is the main protagonist of the Jak and Daxter series, and is playable in all games with the exception of Daxter, where he makes several cameos. He accidentally turns his best friend, Daxter, into an ottsel (a fictional hybrid of otter and weasel) in The Precursor Legacy, and sets out to undo the transformation. In Jak II, he is infused with Dark Eco due to experimentations performed by Baron Praxis. In Jak 3 he is blessed with Light Eco by the Precursors, thereby balancing the Dark Eco inside him, and later learns that his true name is Mar. In Jak X, he is forced to race in the Kras City Grand Championship in order to save his life. He later travels to The Brink to investigate the Eco shortage that is ravaging his world in The Lost Frontier.
- Daxter - Daxter is the secondary protagonist from the Jak & Daxter series. He is Jak's sidekick, and is often found getting into trouble, which results in him turning into an ottsel. He rescues Jak at the beginning of Jak II, and becomes playable intermittently for the first time in the series. In Jak 3 his role grows, and he gets a pair of pants as a reward for his efforts, as was an ongoing gag in the game. In Daxter, he details his adventures in the two year time span before he managed to break Jak out of Jail. In Jak X, he accompanies Jak and his friends to Kras City, and assists them as they compete in the Kras City Grand Championship. He later travels with Jak and Keira to The Brink in The Lost Frontier.
- Samos the Sage - Samos Hagai, most prominent in Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy, serves as a guide throughout the series. He first appears in The Precursor Legacy as the Sage of Green Eco and acts as a fatherly figure to guide the two heroes in their quest. In later games, he still serves as a mentor and a source of advice. He does not appear in Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier and Daxter.
- Keira - Keira is Samos' daughter and Jak's main love interest. She appears in every game acting as a mechanic and inventor, with the exception of Daxter, where she has a non-speaking cameo. She too joins Jak as he races in the Kras City Grand Champion in Jak X. In The Lost Frontier she travels with Jak and Daxter to the Brink, in a quest to find the reason behind the Eco shortage which is ravaging their planet, and to study in hope of becoming a Sage.
- Eco - One of the trademarks of the series is being able to manipulate Eco. The main plot of The Lost Frontier revolves around an Eco shortage.
- Vehicles - Given the enormousness and variance of terrain in the Wasteland, vehicles play a large role as off-road transportation, fueled by a true-to-life physics engine.
- Weapons - Jak II introduced the Morph Gun Mod. A customizable Gunstaff is given to Jak in The Lost Frontier, which makes use of the same basic actions as the Morph Gun.
- Power Cells - They are important precursor artifacts found in Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy and Jak X. They primarily function as an energy source.
- Precursor Orbs - They serve as collectibles and allow the player to purchase cheats in the Secrets Menu.
- The world - A fictional planet, which is the setting for The Precursor Legacy. It contains a multitude of very different locales for the player to explore, ranging from jungles to Volcanoes to Snowy Mountains.
- Haven City - A dystopia ruled by Baron Praxis and his Krimzon Guard law enforcers. Haven City often serves as a hub, where the player is given tasks that must often be fulfilled outside of the city in places that are separated via airlocks. In Jak 3 the city is engulfed in war for control of the streets. The city is the successor of Sandover Village.
- The Wasteland- A desert environment that is five times the size of Haven City, with multiple areas including caves and a volcano. Given the enormousness and variance in terrain, vehicles play a large role as off-road transportation, fueled by a true-to-life physics engine. Spargus City is also located in the Wasteland, which is one several hubs found in Jak 3.
- Spargus City - Being the only city and major hub found in the Wasteland, this is where Jak is rescued and sent to after being banned from Haven City, and plays a large role in Jak 3.
- Kras City - Kras is located near Haven City. It is featured only in Jak X. Racing is a huge sport in the city, and Kras is made up of many race tracks.
- The Brink- The Brink is found in The Lost Frontier and is the edge of the known world. The Eco here is highly unstable, and there are a lot of Eco-pirates. The Brink is populated by a race known as Aeropans. The most common form of transportation appears to be aircraft.
Jak and Daxter Collection 
|Jak and Daxter Collection|
Mass Media Inc. (port)
|Publisher(s)||Sony Computer Entertainment America|
|Series||Jak and Daxter|
|Media/distribution||Blu-ray Disc, download|
Jak and Daxter Collection (known in PAL regions as The Jak and Daxter Trilogy) is a video game that contains high-definition remastered port of the original PlayStation 2 trilogy for the PlayStation 3 on a single Blu-ray Disc as a Classics HD title, published by Sony Computer Entertainment. The games were originally developed by Naughty Dog, and who have assisted in the remastering alongside Mass Media Inc. to provide support for high-definition monitors, higher frame rates, stereoscopic 3D, and additional features for the PlayStation Network.
Remastered features 
The core game and story for all games remains unchanged with the remastered versions. For the remastering, all three games have had a graphics overhaul to allow them to support modern 720p HD resolution with smoother gameplay animation. With the more powerful PlayStation 3, all three games feature a fixed frame rate of 60 frames per second in normal mode, while in 3D mode the games run at 30 frames per second. All three games have PlayStation Network Trophy support.
In May 2011, Naughty Dog's Co-president Evan Wells said he'd love to make another in the series, but the studio was busy with Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception. In October 2011, according to Digital Spy, an online business in South Africa known as BT Games had a "Jak and Daxter HD Collection" listed for release in January 2012. According to Gematsu.com, which spotted the South African listing, also pointed to a source hinting that a "Jak Collection" was in the works back in May. Naughty Dog’s Game Director, Justin Richmond, apparently confirmed that a "Jak and Daxter HD Collection" for PS3 is in development, and will be released sometime in 2012. After much rumor, speculation and fans request, a HD Collection of the Jak and Daxter series was confirmed for a February 2012 release. On March 23, 2013, an ESRB rating for a PS Vita port of the Jak and Daxter Collection was spotted online, and it was later confirmed by Sony through the PlayStation Blog that the collection would be coming to Vita in June 2013.
|Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy||(PS2) 90.22%||(PS2) 88|
|Jak II||(PS2) 87.93%||(PS2) 87|
|Jak 3||(PS2) 85.33%||(PS2) 84|
|Jak X: Combat Racing||(PS2) 77.01%||(PS2) 76|
|Daxter||(PSP) 86.35%||(PSP) 85|
|Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier||(PSP) 72.84%
|Jak and Daxter Collection||(PS3) 80.45%||(PS3) 81|
The series has received positive reviews from critics. The two spin-off games were also generally well received by critics, with Jak X: Combat Racing holding a Metacritic score of 76/100 and Daxter receiving a score of 85/100. The "Remastered Collection" was met with a warm reception from critics, who praised the overall graphical transformation, and noted that "Though some aspects of the games are dated now, the Jak games still stand up as epic adventures."
GameSpot gave a similar review, saying "its tight execution and heavy action elements ensure that things never become dull", and that "it manages to provide a rewarding gameplay experience that shouldn't be missed."
Game Informer felt "the series was driven by a restless sense of innovation" and also praised the graphics and "Naughty Dog’s work in this franchise" for creating "great characters, finely tuned gameplay, and a unceasing inventiveness" and felt "the Jak games stand up as epic adventures.
Eurogamer stated that "the Jak and Daxter series may not be as solid a platformer as Sly Cooper and its gunplay isn't as refined as Ratchet & Clank's - but in terms of ambition, invention and grandiosity, it remains leagues above its last-gen platforming brethren", and "the Jak and Daxter series remains a fascinating document of the evolution of the action adventure; its heroes are unstuck in time, without a genre to call home. No series has been so willing to switch gameplay styles with such reckless abandon, and The Jak and Daxter Trilogy represents a shining example of what happens when a capable developer takes a huge risk."
The success of the Jak and Daxter series resulted in Guinness World Records awarding the series 7 world records in the Guinness World Records: Gamer's Edition 2008. These records include, "First Seamless 3D World in a Console Game", "Most Successful Single Format Platform Series", and "Largest Number of Cutscenes in a Platform Game" for Jak II, in which there are 131 cutscenes, and Jak 3, in which there are 213 cutscenes.
The Last of Us creative director Neil Druckmann said in an interview with Game Informer that they had originally planned on making a reboot of the series, saying "We dug around trying to find the core of Jak and Daxter...Who are the characters? We had to reboot it essentially. Every time we got excited about an idea we would take a step back...and feel it's not Jak and Daxter, are we just slapping the name on it for marketing reasons?"
See also 
- List of voice actors in the Jak and Daxter series
- Naughty Dog
- Ready at Dawn
- High Impact Games
- Crash Bandicoot
- Ratchet & Clank
- Sly Cooper
- PlayStation Move Heroes
- PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale
- HD Collections
- Nihilistic Software
- Mass Media Inc.
- "Jak and Daxter Collection hits PS3 February 7". Gamespot. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- "Jak and Daxter Collection hits PS3 February 7 + Trophies to Collect". Blog.us.playstation.com. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- "Jak and Daxter Collection hits PS3 February 7 + Trophies To Collect". Blog.eu.playstation.com. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- "Jak and Daxter Collection hits PS3 February 7 + Trophies To Collect". EBgames. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- "PS3 News: Naughty Dog: 'We'd love to make another Jak and Daxter". ComputerAndVideoGames. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- Colin Moriarty. "Is a Jak and Daxter HD Collection Coming to PS3? - PlayStation 3 News at IGN". Ps3.ign.com. Retrieved 2012-03-04.
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- "Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak II Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- "Jak II Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- "Jak 3 Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- "Jak 3 Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- "Jak X: Combat Racing Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak X: Combat Racing Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Daxter Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Daxter Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak and Daxter Collection Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Jak and Daxter Collection Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- Jack DeVries. "Jak and Daxter Collection Review - PlayStation 3 Review at IGN". Ie.ps3.ign.com. Retrieved 2012-03-04.
- Satterfield, Shane (2001-12-07). "Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy Review, Page 2 - GameSpot.com". Uk.gamespot.com. Retrieved 2012-03-04.
- "Jak and Daxter Review". GameInformer. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- "Jak and Daxter Trilogy Review". EuroGamer. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- "The Jak And Daxter Trilogy Available In-Store Now And On PSN Next Week". PlayStation Network. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- "Jak and Daxter Guinness World Records". Guinness World Records. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
- Bryan Vore (December 3, 2010). "Readers' Top 30 Characters Results Revealed - News - www.GameInformer.com". Gameinformer. Retrieved 2011-05-29.
- "Naughty Dog: A new Jak & Daxter would do "everyone a disservice"". GameInformer. Retrieved January 5, 2012.