Review by Mech Master

"The Best Platformer of 2003"

Jak and Daxter is one of the best games I have ever played in my life. I didn't think it could be improved on. I don't know how it was done, but it was made better somehow. The polygon count of each character went from 3,000(old game) to 15,000(new game). That is a lot of polygons. This new game is that much funnier as well. So many new gameplay elements were added like the hoverboard, the ability to turn into Dark Jak, and many other things. I have to say, if the game got any more different than its predecessor this series could have been ruined. Luckily, that didn't happen. Whew!

STORY:10
Jak and Daxter had a great story. This game continues it and it is just so captivating. I love all of the characters. Each one of them makes the story that much better. It all starts off with Jak and Daxter screwing around with this time traveling vehicle or something like that. They accidentally open this ancient precursor portal and get sucked into it and go a LONG ways into the future. Immediately Jak gets arrested and is tortured for a couple of years with Dark Ico which enables him to become Dark Jak. Then Daxter rescues him and Jak wants revenge on the Baron for torturing him. That is about the gist of the story. There are so many other things I could mention, but that might ruin it for you. You gotta play the game yourself to find out everything.

GRAPHICS:10
These are some of the best graphics I have seen in a long time in a platform game. Like I said, each character has about 15,000 polygons in them. Each character has an immense amount of detail put into them. The lighting is done very well. The framerate may drop once in a while during the heat of battle. This game is huge. If you thought that the last game was big, you haven't seen nothin'. This game is a giant city. The city alone is about five times as big as Jak and Daxter. The city combined with all of the areas outside of the city is ten to fifteen times as big as Jak and Daxter. Everything is rendered beautifully. On one level you go above the city and you can see the entire thing. It is gorgeous. I just stared for a minute at the city. It was breathtaking. These graphics are amazing. Even though the framerate will drop on occasion, that isn't enough to bring the graphic's score from a ten to a nine. This game is enormous. I makes sense that the framerate drops at times. What would you expect?

SOUND:10
In the first game I laughed at Daxter's funny comments, but in this game I laughed my @$$ off! Daxter says a whole lot of smart remarks in this one. Jak 2 is more geared toward an older audience unlike the first game. It is mainly because of Daxter and the whole very gritty, serious world that they are in now. Now Daxter cusses and a bunch of other stuff. This game is very entertaining. The music is pretty good. I have heard better, but it is good. The sound effects are all done very nicely. This is one of the funniest games I have played recently. This new world Jak is in is very dark and gritty. So it is nice that there is lots of humor. Overall, I was very impressed with the audio in Jak 2. Everything is done right. This game is funny. It has good music and sound effects. What's not to like?

GAMEPLAY:10
Jak 2 at first seems a lot like Grand Theft Auto. It has that feature that you can jack someone for their ride. That's cool. What worried me, though, was when you first start playing the whole game's mission structure is just like Grand Theft Auto's. I didn't want the game to be just like GTA. As I kept playing I eventually ventured outside of the city and that is where it starts to play like a platformer. Then I realized that the city missions are sort of like GTA's , but the ones outside of the city are platformer missions. That is where the good times start. It is fun to just mess around in the city. There is so much to do. There is also a hoverboard that you get. In a lot of the platformer games where you get to do a little mini-game like this it is pretty linear. Not in Jak 2. It is completely non-linear. there is an amazing amount of depth to it. You can use the hoverboard any time you want also. Now you also get guns. HURRAY! There are four different guns. There is a shotgun, minigun, automatic like an AK, and a rocket launcher. The actual weapons are futuristic versions of what I said. There are upgrades for them too. Man, there is so much more to this game. I just don't have time to list everything. This game is just so awesome. It isn't as revolutionary as the first game though. The only thing bad is that there really wasn't anything too innovative. Who cares?!

CONTROL:9
Naughty Dog did everything perfectly except for the controls. They aren't perfect, but they are great. There are so many types of gameplay that it is remarkable that they didn't completely mess up the controls. All of the controls are very easy to learn except for the hoverboard controls. It will take you a while to figure out all of the tricks that you can do. There should have been a trick book or something so that you don't have to memorize all of the tricks and maneuvers. The camera can get a little funky at times, but for the most part it is really good. All of the controls are very simple and the game is really easy to just pick-up-and-play. The buttons are all layed out in good places. All of the buttons respond quickly. It still baffles me that Naughty Dog figured out a comfortable control scheme for all of these different types of gameplay.

OVERALL:10
Jak 2 is everything you would want in a platformer and then some. If you looked up brilliant in the dictionary there would be a picture of Jak 2. This game just delivers in all areas. It has some of the most gorgeous graphics yet on the Playstation 2 with character models that have 15,000 polygons put into them. The audio is great. Daxter is back and ruder and cruder than ever before. The gameplay can't be matched. Jak 2 is just as good as any Mario game. There have been countless improvements to this game. There is also a very simple and effective control scheme. If your looking for replay value, Jak 2 has that as well. There are tons of Bonus Missions all around the city and tons of cheat codes and easter eggs to unlock. What is really great is the fact that there is even a new mode you can unlock that is similar to what Nintendo did for Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Master Quest where you can play through the game where things are different than before. This is the total package. Words can't describe how good this game is. You have to play this game. Steal the money for it. Earn it. It doesn't matter. Just go out an buy this game.


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 12/18/03


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