Recently I have a taken a long and fun trip down memory lane, Jak and Daxter were a huge part of my childhood and I practically jumped at the chance to shoot down some nasty metal heads and drive around the unforgiving wasteland. I would say I enjoyed a journey collecting power cells but I completed the precursor legacy last year after getting it for free with Uncharted the lost legacy. While I did enjoy my first adventure with Jak and Daxter the first game has nothing on the following games (except the lost frontier…).
When I first saw that Jak 2, Jak 3 and Jak X had finally come to PS4 I thought it was about time! These 2 played such a huge part in my growing love for gaming, every time a new Jak game came out I needed to have it, I needed to know what mischief and adventures the heroes had gotten themselves into.
So recently I completed Jak 2, and I forgot just how much I enjoyed that game! Of course I always knew I was gonna enjoy taking down the Baron and Metal Head leader all over again and quite frankly I thought it was going to be a breeze, I thought that I would jump right in and have the game completed in record time. While I do think 10 hours is quite a good finish time, it was anything but a breeze! Some of the missions had me stressing, how did I find it easy as a kid? That is a complete mystery to me. The race against Erol was always a mission I hated but I’m pretty sure I completed it in less tries as a 10 year old than as a supposed adult with plenty of gaming experience…but the struggle was a pleasant surprise for the most part, I love a challenge so needing to actually try to get through this game only added to my enjoyment.
I think my favourite thing about Jak 2 was going from the child friendly mildly violent adventure in the precursor legacy to shooting things up in Haven city, as well as hijacking vehicles and fighting against the so called authorities. It was a serious change in comparison to the first instalment of the franchise, however it was a change for the better. The game appealed to a much wider audience by adding guns and what I consider to be a better storyline. Everyone enjoys playing the badass and Jak certainly became that, the fact that he has been pumped full of dark eco giving home his darker side known as Dark Jak only adds to the awesomeness that this game oozes.
There was a bigger variety in the characters that we meet, the big bad metal head leader was certainly more intimidating that Gol and Mia, which to me is a more enjoyable and formidable foe, though once again I will say that I think Precursor Legacy is brilliant and I will always regard it as being one of the best games I ever played as a kid but while I may still enjoy it, the appeal isn’t quite as high anymore when I could be using guns in the sequels. Anyway back to the characters, there are so many more people that we meet, that affect the story. Krew, Torn, Ashlelin the baron, the shadow (a young Samos!). Then of course we have the awesome Sig who has gone on to be one of my favourite characters alongside Ashelin. They all bring something to the table in Jak 2, their existence makes sense, rather than a bunch of characters that are there for the sake of filling space. We still have Samos and Keira, our two companions from the first game and I must say the way we find Keira and Samos is quite entertaining. I have got to say though that I will forever be confused as the how Jak and Daxter didn’t figure out that the mechanic behind the curtain was Keira.
I thought the storyline for this game was really good and it flowed nicely for the most part, I did guess fairly early on as a kid that the kid in the game was gonna be Jak but there was no way I was gonna piece together the possibilities of how at such a young age, now I understand about the prospect of time travel and if this game was only released recently then I think I might have guessed the how’s as well as the what’s.
The nostalgia that I felt all throughout the adventure was more than worth the 10 hours I spent completing it. In fact I am currently half way through both Jak 3 and Jak X, both of which I absolutely love and I actually enjoy both more thank Jak 2 so as you can imagine I am currently in my element where the games I’m playing are concerned.
If you have never played a Jak and Daxter game then I’m sorry to say that you are missing out, even after all these years they are still a joy to play. If you have never played one then I would say that for £12 on PSN they are worth it, they are an enjoyable experience and as I said they helped me to fall in love with gaming, alongside Sly, Ratchet and Clank and Crash Bandicoot.
Naughty Dog truly have made some incredible games and franchises, with Jak and Daxter being their major one for the PS2 after the success they had with Crash Bandicoot on the PSone: following on from 2 of my favourite heroes they went on to create one of my favourite ever franchises. Uncharted. I wouldn’t be doing Naughty Dog justice if I didn’t mention their incredible creation that is regarded as one of the best games ever made, Last of us.
So if you have enjoyed any of these naughty dog creations but haven’t followed the elf and the ottsel then I encourage you to give them a try.
Thank you for reading, what game was it that made you fall in love with gaming?