Original URL: http://www.psxextreme.com/scripts/previews2/preview.asp?prevID=145
Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy
Scheduled release date: December 11th, 2001
Publisher: Sony
Developer: Naughty Dog
Genre: Adventure
Number Of Players: 1

  Oozing in anticipation of things to come, Naughty Dog would tease me of their newest project by sending me cards with the figures of the two characters' shadows. Looking at the copyright material, I found out the name of this game is Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy. The game would shortly debut at E3 and stun the press with its unbelievably vivid visuals. Naughty Dog's first PS2 project was gorgeous; on top of that it was an all new kind of adventure game with free roaming environments. This is single-handedly the most open and diverse adventure atmosphere since Super Mario 64. To be frank, Jak and Daxter's freedom puts Mario's freedom to shame. In other words, Jak and Daxter's world does not consist of level portals that you have to enter. You've got one set environment that is continuous and has no "stages" or "levels," just progressive environments. Of course you can save along the way, so don't get the wrong idea.

   Visually, Jak and Daxter is an effervescent title that leaves almost nothing left to be desired for. Naughty Dog's skilled developers have done wonders at creating an evolving world that features various time of days, such as sun-light, afternoon, and night time, all in real-time. The polygonal environments are never redundant and feature nothing but the highest quality of texture designing. Despite being a continuous and progressive world, there is absolutely no sign of draw-in or pop-up. Climb a high structure and look around, even the farthest island can be seen! It's an extraordinary sight, something you're not common to find in other future adventure games. Jak and Daxter's character detail is superb, the details are all there, and the polygon counts are surely in the thousands. Since Jak is the only playable character, Daxter just rides on his shoulder. The motion animations for Jak are stunning and smooth. Running at a crisp 60 frames, the motions are well executed and feature a slew of detail not seen in an adventure game before.

   My personal experience with Jak and Daxter was incredibly positive. The game obviously has a story, as there is voice acting involved, while the demo contains Japanese voice-overs; I have heard the US voices and they sound awesome. The story revolves around Daxter, he was once a human much like Jak, but he accidentally slipped and fell into a pool filled with Dark Eco. Him and Jak were playing too close, and when Daxter came out of the pool, his physical form had mutated into this ferret/weasel like creature. Asking for his best friend's help, both Jak and Daxter are advised to visit The Green Sage for help. I wouldn't want to give away too much of the story, especially with the December 11th release so near. Gameplay consists of collecting various items, such as elemental power-ups. But the primary objective seems like it requires you to find these molecules like glowing jewels. They are scattered all over the island, among other common placed items. I should point out that the AI is incredibly smart! They will spot you from a distance, and can hear you if you make a loud noise. So don't expect to sneak around, because these guys are relentless. Jak and Daxter may be the perfect Christmas present for adventure and platform fans. This is one of the most imaginative adventure titles since Klonoa; a must have come this December 11th!


11/8/2001   SolidSnake