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Jak 3

Developer: Naughty Dog Publisher: SCE
09 November 2004
Jak 3 - cover art
Glitchwave rating
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562 Ratings / 3 Reviews
#1,109 All-time
#60 for 2004
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2004 Naughty Dog SCE  
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Jak 3 Platinum
2005 Naughty Dog SCE  
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Title
On the surface, this game is a straight upgrade to Jak II. More weapons, more powers, more vehicles. Weapons like the Plasmite RPG and Beam Reflexor are just plain fun to play around with, and the Light Jak powers keep the frustration level down in the main gameplay segments. The Jetboard has improved controls, as well.

Jak 3's opening is paced very poorly from a gameplay perspective. After the intro on-foot tutorial, you are treated to a leaper lizard tutorial, a button-pressing minigame, a buggy tutorial, a buggy race, another buggy race, a leaper lizard race, and a buggy combat segment. There really should have been an on-foot mission thrown in there to break it up.
The start of the second act is similarly paced poorly. Jak gets out of the catacombs deep under the city, and is immediately told to go through the sewers. Once he emerges in the port, he does four more missions before being told to go into the sewers again. It's already lame that the "big return" to Haven City is a return to the most ruined part of the city, where all there is to do is trek through the sewers. It's even worse that you have to return to the sewers again so soon.

The pacing is by no means the worst problem with this game, however. The big problem is not exclusive to this one game, but is present in many, many games from this era. Toward the middle of the PS2's lifespan, after the huge success of GTA3, it was decided somewhere that games could not be just "one thing" any more. Games included many different gameplay styles and minigames that were far different than the rest of the game. Sometimes, you'd find that these gameplay styles meshed and complimented eachother well, but in a lot of others, they just wouldn't. You'd have some arbitrary minigame that's way too hard, not fun to play, and required to progress to what you actually want to be doing.

Jak 3 loves these minigames. Some are quick and painless, like the "press the buttons as the icon passes through the circle" minigame. Two of them, however, stick out in my mind as absolute roadblocks that have stalled out multiple playthroughs for me. I've beaten this game a few times, but many more times, I just give up at one of these two minigames.
The first is a Pacman clone, where you have to collect all the pellets while a single "ghost" roams around in an expanding and shrinking circle. There's also another robot thing that will appear to create more pellets occasionally. It sounds simple, but it's absolutely maddening how many times I've almost beaten it and been eaten by the ghost and had to start completely over. It's a much harder game than it sounds, unless you're Billy Mitchell.
The second is a turret minigame. If there's one thing I hate in videogames, it's turret minigames. Shoot the boss, he launches missiles at you, which you have to shoot, or you'll die. They take fucking forever and they are not fun in the slightest. If you get even slightly impatient, you die and have to start the hour-long minigame all over again. Fucking hooray.
The difference between these minigames and other hard missions is that these minigames don't use the skills you've gained and honed over the course of the game. They come out of left field and force you to learn an entirely new skill for no reason. If I wanted to play Pacman, I'd play fucking Pacman. I'm playing Jak 3 because I want to jump around, shoot guns, and drive buggies. Having a hard, required minigame that requires a completely new skillset pop up out of the blue is the worst thing you can do as a game designer.
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Rakitox 2016-04-09T04:51:34Z
2016-04-09T04:51:34Z
4.0
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Title
Moonlight Radiation (a.k.a. Sleazy Beyond Thunderdrome Mashup)
Insofar, the Jak & Daxter series only made sense in its second chapter, which was a Playstation2 amelioration of Banjo-Kazooie and Conker's Bad Fur Day in the context of Grand Theft Auto (let's not count the first chapter, which was simply a more polished version of Banjo-Kazooie, because yes, Daxter IS Kazooie).
The third chapter, which was gifted on Christmas to millions of unaware kids, confused all of them by bringing this mid-story thing that no one grasped, and by suddenly opening up this BIIIIIIIG (for the time) desert where to race -- which is basically the coolest thing about this game.

The rest is hardly a masterpiece: most of it is a bad mashup of a redux version of Jak2 (a crippled Haven City due to space storage), and a tiny town easily firegettable after a while. The emphasis on guns, the desert, and vehicles make this a not-so belated hommage to Mad Max (and the Matrix, for Arceus Tepig's sake 'twas awful, especially in that Pac-man rip-off minigame) in the form of a videogame. Yet, I feel this game was more or less the disposable sequel's end and cash cow before venturing onto the next platform of videogames, ultimately exposing the whole industry as one gigantic obsolescent-plannet wallet.

Unlike its predecessor, this has little replay value: the city's mayhem ain't engaging a millibar higher than it was on Jak2 on a sedated mephedrone day of speedrunning without TAS (here lasting half, and possibly lower, than in Jak2 or even Jak1), the desert gets a bit annoying with the same 3 repetitive cars chasing you (albeit the desert's planimetry was way cool for its times), and the gags do not really hold on this time -- most memorable: Jinx smoking a cigarettes' butt gladly asking the player to cover up his a**, literally (at least in the other European languages).
Good corredum; almost effortless in urban design. Committed? Yup but only for dumping a franchise getting old quite fast in the wake of even more spericulate (and aggressive) Grand Theft Autos. Unfortunately no, it's not ICO either, so no artsy value either.
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80C 2021-06-29T22:25:41Z
2021-06-29T22:25:41Z
3.5
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A rule of thumb that should be expressed more often is that a lackluster sequel to a video game does not equate to a bad one. Sequels are a tricky thing across all mediums of art and entertainment. They are readily welcome under the right circumstances, but they are always a gamble because of their inherent nature of using the previous titles as a sort of reference. This is even trickier when the sequel is a continuation of the narrative elements of the previous titles like the characters and the story. Video game sequels have a different nature to them than the sequels of other entertainment mediums. The first game usually serves as a template for the world of the game and usually comes with awkward hiccups that come with formulating a new IP. The second game gives the developers a myriad of opportunities. The typical course of action is to either buff out the cracks of the first game or deviate from it entirely. The third game usually mirrors the first two games while adding only a few new features to make it discernable from the first two, but still shows that the series has run its course and the developers were short on new ideas.

The Jak and Daxter trilogy on the PS2 is a fine example of this kind of series progression. The first game could’ve stood on its own as a phenomenal platformer that capitalized on the advancements the new console generation came with. The second game smoothed over the cracks of the first game that were noticeable comparably to the strengths of the sequel, namely characterization, and story. It also somehow managed to deviate significantly from the light-hearted tone and setting of the first game. Executing both of these directions fantastically makes Jak II the perfect sequel to the first game. Jak 3, similarly to other third entries in a franchise, does not deliver on the same ambition as the second entry. The setting and tone of Jak II are rooted in Jak 3, comfortably using it as a template. The radical shifts in tone and gameplay that catapulted Jak II beyond the confines of the first game were now merely the standard course for the series because we had seen them before. Jak 3 is not the achievement that Jak II is, but that does not make it a disappointing entry. It’s just as exemplary as the previous two games with some people considering it the finest entry in the franchise. It’s not a sequel that excels by catapulting the franchise to new horizons, but one that arguably improves on the blemishes of the previous game for a more refined experience.

The third game does not begin with the standard, prophetic opening from Samos musing about Jak’s potential as a hero. At this point, the developers assumed that you were already aware of Jak’s heroism after two games. (Disclaimer: if you’re playing this game for the first time, the opening cutscene is shown before the main menu. If you skip it, you will have no idea what’s occurring or where Jak and Daxter are when you start up the game). If you thought that saving Haven City would’ve granted Jak absolution from his status as a renegade (no pun intended), you’d be mistaken. The opening cutscene sees a flying Krimzon Guard van flying over what appears to be a desert. The aircraft lands and Jak emerges from the back of it in handcuffs with blue Krimzon Guards surrounding him. He has been banished from Haven City and left to die in the hostile desert wasteland, a scapegoat to blame for the metalhead invasion of Haven City in the second game. This was a decision by Count Veger, the head of the city council who overruled Ashelin's executive orders to keep Jak. Ashelin gives Jak a beacon and the aircraft flies away. Daxter and Pecker also decide to join Jak on his trek through the desolate wasteland. I can understand why Daxter would want to go with Jak, but why Pecker? I wouldn’t want to walk through the scorching desert with both of them at each other’s throats, but that’s exactly what happens. All three eventually collapse from exhaustion and Jak has delirium-induced flashbacks about what happened up to this point after the second game. Apparently, defeating Kor was not enough for the metalheads to retreat from Haven City. The strongest ones survived and are now working with a series of Krimzon Bots to further the invasion of the city. Their allegiance proves to be effective as they topple the Baron’s Tower, destroying several Haven City districts on impact. This devastating moment is a jaw-dropper for anyone who played Jak II. The metalhead invasion has reached a point of uncontrollable pandemonium, signified by the destruction of the Baron’s Tower. It was a symbol so formidable and so gargantuan that it made the Baron and his rule seem impervious. Alas, this is a changing of the guard and a fantastic segway into the next game. The beacon Ashelin gave to Jak alerts two men who stumble upon our heroes and shelter them from the storm. Jak and his friends are now in the sand city of Spargus led by a wasteland warrior named Damas. Pecker becomes Damas’s new advisor and Jak and Daxter have to prove themselves to Damas to stay in Spargus.

Immediately, the change in setting once again gives the player the feeling that we’re not in Kansas anymore. Instead of teleporting through a warp gate and ending up somewhere without any scope of the setting, it’s the somewhat nearby Spargus, a wasteland city built on the sand. It’s where the refuse of Haven City goes when Haven City casts them out. It’s sort of like Haven City’s Australia. In fact, the elements that makeup Spargus are very reminiscent of a certain Australian, post-apocalyptic movie franchise. Spargus is what occurs when several people are forced out of their homes to survive in the hostile environment that was initially meant to be their tomb. The culture of Spargus revels in the survival of the fittest. The denizens of Spargus fight in a sparsely built arena surrounded by molten lava to keep their place in the city. It’s a rough place with an even rougher livelihood. Jak quickly acclimates to the culture of Spargus as it fits his rash attitude. Out of context with the story, roaming around the city as Jak makes it seem quaintly old-world. It’s a small area that kind of looks like Tatooine if it was on the beach. Wind chimes can be heard at all times and zoomers are replaced with Leapers, lizard-horse creatures that control just like the Flut Flut from the first game. It’s ironic that the rural setting of Spargus is a culture shock from Haven City considering Jak and Daxter originally came from a rural setting themselves.

A larger area outside of Spargus in the desert wasteland that Jak was thrown into by Haven City. The wastelanders of Spargus often excavate the area for artifacts. Jak not only does that, but also races, disposes of different breeds of wasteland metalheads, and makes frequent visits to the Monk Temple north of the desert. Traversing the desert can be quite daunting, so Jak has a plethora of vehicles to choose from in Kliever’s lot right near the desert entrance. Jak will start off with the piddly little Tough Puppy, but will quickly unlock some vehicles with different kinds of attributes and firepower. The Sand Shark is a speedy vehicle with machine-gun turrets. The Gila Stomper is a durable vehicle made for defense. The Dune Hopper, my favorite of these buggies, enables you to jump incredible heights and it’s armed with a grenade launcher. There are also other buggies you can unlock in the menu with precursor orbs. The vastness and rough terrain of the desert wasteland make up for the compact size of Spargus. Combining both of these areas almost rivals the city-scape of Haven City from the second game. The wasteland oftentimes can be arduous to traverse through due to the landscape being more compatible with some vehicles, matched with the constant marauder vehicles slamming into you to throw you off course. As often as I became annoyed with the obstacles in the desert, it is the essence of Jak 3 that separates it from the industrial cityscape that made up the foreground of Jak II.

Jak isn’t only limited to places in the sand. After the first act, Jak makes his way back to Haven City through a series of underground passageways. Haven City is still the same rank, hellhole from the previous game, but it’s a little different. Due to the Baron’s tower collapsing and the passage of time, some of the familiar areas from Jak II are absent. The waterways, stadium, and the area with Mar’s Tomb have been destroyed by the fall of the tower. Places like the bazaar and the field area are now a ghastly looking metalhead territory, arguably a worse fate for these areas than being crushed. Most of the sub-areas like the pumping station and Dead Town are totally gone. Areas like the docks, the industrial highways, and the slums remain relatively intact. The sewers make a return but are designed to be much grander in scale like the Lost Precursor City instead of the dark, claustrophobic pit it was in Jak II. Haven Forest makes a return without the Mountain Temple, but the land is a crisp, autumn brown instead of spring green. Whether that’s because it’s autumn in Jak 3 or the land is dehydrated from the corrupted influence of the metalheads is unknown. The only relatively new place is the ritzy, gentrified area where the water slums used to be. The oppressive tone of Haven City from the second game is no longer felt. Instead, the city is always on pins and needles due to it being a battleground against the KG Bots and the metalheads. Remember those rolling robots from that one mission from the second game? They are now a common enemy in Jak 3. The Krimzon Guards are no longer active. They’ve either disbanded as an executive order from Ashelin or they’ve color swapped and fashioned themselves into Torn’s army against the invading forces. These guys are puppies compared to the pack of wolves that were the Krimzon Guards. They may look the same, but these guys will not retaliate if you hit them and they constantly whine about how hopeless their situation is. Honestly, this is a sentiment that’s only felt by them. The hopeless tone from the second game just isn’t there. There is a new feeling of awe whenever you are near a familiar area of the city that was crushed by the tower. Picturing how the area used to be in the second game gives weight to the colossal impact the fall of the Baron’s palace had.

Haven City isn’t quite the urban playground it used to be. The setting of Spargus and the wasteland are present to deviate from Haven City to formulate a unique identity for Jak 3, and they both succeed by offering a different landscape. However, the small scale of Spargus does not match the grand scale of Haven City from the second game, and the desert, while on a bigger scale, isn’t really comparable due to being restricted to traversing through it by vehicle. Haven City is supposed to be a shell of its former self this time around, so of course, it’s not as wide and sprawling as it used to be. Individually, none of these areas are up to par with Haven City from the second game in terms of being an expansive singular world with branching paths. The strength of the world in this game is having both Spargus and the wasteland with the less expansive Haven City as two parts of one whole. If one area feels too restricted after a while, flying out to the other one will always feel comparatively fresh. The only problem is that this method of traveling between these two places via flying vehicle is the only time in the series where there are geographical inconsistencies. The main strength of the first game was that each level was seamlessly built between all of the individual levels. It was practically an open-world platformer. The second game shifted into an open-world game with the same cohesive world design even between the sublevels. The dig site was the only place Jak would fly to by aircraft, but the player could discover that the site could be accessed organically near the pumping station via the jet board. We have no idea how far Spargus is from Haven City because the only way to travel back and forth between the two main places is by KG aircraft which is done through a cutscene. This is probably done to make Spargus seem well removed from Haven City, but it compromises the integrity of the seamless world-building the series strides in.

It’s a shame that something interesting the developers implemented to make the third entry fresher became a hiccup, but the less concise world-building isn’t all bad. Quite a few missions in this game like the volcano trek and invading the floating KG factory are some of my favorite missions in the game. Jak only visits these far-off locations once, but these missions are longer and more action-platforming focused. They even squeeze in plenty of time to play as Daxter in these missions, making the teamwork of the two during these missions give it a little more of a grander scope. It’s like the Mar’s Tomb section in Jak II which was one of my favorite sections from the second game.

One common change a third entry will implement is a focus on accessibility. This is either a conscious decision by the developers to garner a wider audience or it comes naturally with the ample opportunity to improve the gameplay mechanics by the third game. Naughty Dog took the incredibly steep difficulty curve of Jak II into consideration and decided to make the next entry a much smoother experience. The checkpoints during missions are much more liberally placed, Jak periodically gains armor that allows him to sustain more damage, and Jak has a lot more tools at his disposal. All of the gun mods from the second game make a return along with two more mods for each of them. The scattergun gets a charged up beam whose blast radius will take care of any small, grounded enemies and a grenade launcher with plentiful ammo. The additional blaster mods will ricochet off enemies a couple of times and launch a disc that will scatter about 50 blaster ammo at enemies. The Vulcan Fury comes with an electricity mod and one that spurts several tiny, blue homing bullets. The peacemaker has an anti-gravity mode in which enemies will float defenselessly in the air for a while and what is essentially a nuke that makes the RYNO from Ratchet & Clank look like a Playskool toy.

Dark Jak also makes a return with a few new features. Instead of releasing the Dark Jak power all at once for a short period of time, eco is stored in a gauge and can be used with any amount of dark eco. Dark Jak can still use the bomb and wave to clear rooms of enemies. Dark strike and dark invisibility are moves that Jak obtains through the course of the story. They are mainly used in platforming sections outside of the hub-worlds. I think these moves were implemented because Dark Jak was so underutilized in the previous game. It gives the player more reason to use Dark Jak, but these sections feel a bit shoehorned in. An entirely new feature in Jak 3 is Light Jak. After visiting the monk temple in the desert, a precursor shines a light down on Jak. He erupts with a burst of light, encapsulating him in a blue-hued, incandescent glow. Light Jak is angelic while Dark Jak is beastly, the ying to Dark Jak’s yang is further represented by the gauges in the bottom left corner of the screen. Light Jak is triggered by the same button as Dark Jak, but the L2 trigger coincides with another button to activate a specific Light Jak power. Light Jak can heal himself, briefly stop time, use an energy shield, and can also fly. Like Dark Jak, Light Jak is kind of poorly implemented as they are only really needed for certain platforming sections. The only Light Jak move that is useful in most cases is the heal option.

All of these new features collectively make for a less aggravating experience than Jak II, but the game is far too easy as a result. This might just be because I’ve replayed Jak II a staggering amount of times, but I don’t find the game to be the grueling affair that some people make it out to be. It’s consistently a fair challenge that could have had a less sporadic difficulty curve. The water slums mission can still fuck right off though. Having all of the weapons available to you in Jak 3 sure would’ve been helpful during that mission. Being a little too helpful is exactly the issue in Jak 3. Twelve different weapons with plentiful ammo and a massive range of power trivialize the combat. Each gun mod serves its unique utility in the second game and it’s really all you need. All of these new weapons are a blast to use, but not very many of the missions really stood out to me because they were such a breeze to get through. A couple of shots from the bouncing blaster mod doubled with the spin kick are almost guaranteed to wipe out every enemy on screen in a matter of seconds. It makes me wonder why anyone would use the regular blaster or any of the other base mods from the second game at all here. Dark Jak is also rendered useless in combat because of these superweapons. I didn’t use Dark Jak very often in Jak II, but it was always useful in a pinch. Those hectic moments where Dark Jak would be useful can be resolved with any of these weapons. This is also keeping in mind that Jak can heal himself with any amount of light eco, trivializing the difficulty even more. Easing the difficulty from the previous game is a common point of accessibility that makes many sequels less savory. Some may argue that it’s better than struggling with the missions in Jak II, but that struggle made the game far more engaging. Implementing all of these new features backfired on Naughty Dog as the dark and light Jak are still poorly utilized in combat. Besides the healing mechanic, I suppose introducing Light Jak is pertinent to Jak’s progression as a character.

Most of the familiar faces from Jak II return in the sequel exactly how they were in the previous game. Jak is still the angsty, motivated young man he was in Jak II and Daxter is still the wise-cracking comic relief. The supporting characters are still the same, but some of them are leading different positions. Ashelin has replaced her father as the leader of Haven City, Torn is the commander of the squad of soldiers defending the city, and characters like Samos and Onin are doing what they can to support the fight to defend Haven City. Sig has an unexpected run-in with Jak and Daxter in Spargus, revealing that he’s native to this place and he’s been acting as a spy for Damas in Haven City. He certainly fits the head-on, warrior-like attitude and stature of Spargus. . The only character that is different this time around is Keira. Apparently, her voice actor quit, so they hired Tara Strong to do her voice along with a new character. She isn’t her perky self in this game as she is relegated to coyly standing around in the background with a few arbitrary lines spoken to remind us that she still exists, which is a real shame. Her lack of a presence in this game also gives way to Ashelin being the prime love interest for Jak, erasing any implied romantic connection she had with Torn.

Jak 3 does not treat us to an entirely new cast of eclectic characters like in the previous game, but it does manage to introduce a few new faces. Damas is definitely the most important new character in the game. He is a headstrong, disciplined warrior and a strict leader who rules his city fairly, but with a swift code of honor. He is reluctant to bring in Jak and Daxter at first because they are from Haven City but soon comes around to Jak after Jak proves himself worthy as a wasteland warrior. It’s very reminiscent of Jak proving himself to Torn in the previous game. Damas and Jak discover that they have a lot in common as they start to form a sort of father and son relationship with each other alluding to a pivotal scene in the final act of the story . A secondary character in Spargus is Kleiver, a prime warrior in the city and the curator of all of the wasteland buggies Jak drives. He’s quite portly, looks like he reeks of body odor, and looks at every threat the wasteland has with a chuckle and a grin. He doesn’t serve much purpose in the grand scheme of the story, but his banter with Jak and Daxter is entertaining. A more unique new character is Seem, an androgenous monk living in Spargus. Seem is a stoic, serious being that gives insight into the arcane precursor forces at work. He/she also underestimates Jak and Daxter at first but comes around to them like everyone else.

There is also a new villain stinking up the bureaucratic forces in Haven City. Count Veger is the head of the judicial council of Haven City and the man who sentences Jak to a dry, sandy grave at the beginning of the story. We’re supposed to pretend like we’ve seen this man before as all of the characters seem familiar with him, but anyone who has played Jak II knows that this man was nowhere to be seen. Veger makes reference to past events involving himself in the previous games, so I guess he’s not a new official. His main goal is to find the ultimate precursor power hidden deep in the catacombs. He believes this power will make him into a god, giving him the power to stop the war in Haven City and reform the world in his own image. He’s another egomaniac with a position of power in Haven City. However, he’s nowhere near as imposing as Baron Praxis was, or even Erol for that matter. The power dynamic has shifted in the favor of Jak and his friends that even a councilman doesn’t pose as much of a threat even if he has the authority to throw people out of the city. Ashelin even dissolves him of his position at some point which ultimately trivializes his role as a threatening villain. He more or less comes off as an annoying inconvenience more than anything else.

The more menacing villains of this game are the darkmakers which fit the role of the lurkers/metalheads as the enemy species Jak fights in great numbers. They only appear near the end of the game and they are actually pretty formidable due to their shield that can sustain a lot of firepower and their dark orb attack that can do a lot of damage. According to Seem, darkmakers are corrupted, disgraced precursors with a lust for the destruction that is generated by dark eco. These anti-precursors come with their own set of technology and the most foreboding of which is their darkmaker ship. It’s illuminated in the sky with a purple glow and is the harbinger of doom for any planet that comes across it. Jak’s mission in the game is to stop this ship from destroying the planet using the power of the precursors.

Like in Jak II, Jak 3’s story is divided into three different acts, each one with a different overarching mission making up a whole of the game. The first act is Jak’s banishment to the wasteland and him getting acclimated to the wasteland life of Spargus. At some point, Ashelin comes back and begs Jak to aid them with the war effort in Haven City, but Jak naturally feels betrayed by the city that threw him out like a piece of trash. After gaining his new light powers, Jak, Daxter, and Pecker make their way back to Haven City through a series of old passages designed by Mar. They encounter Veger at the edge of Haven City who reveals to them that he destroyed the Baron’s palace to get access to the catacombs and used Jak as a scapegoat.

The second act is aiding with the war efforts in Haven City. Jak is back to performing odd jobs for Torn and unlocking parts of the city in the process to get Torn back to HQ in the new part of Haven City. In the process, you learn who the real antagonist of Jak 3 is. After colliding into a dozen of huge barrels of dark eco and meeting his untimely demise, Erol has apparently been resurrected like Darth Vader. He’s now part cyborg and hell-bent on destroying the planet. Somehow, he’s in control of the KG bots, the metalheads, and the darkmaker armies and is rallying all of them to further the destruction of Haven City and the entire world. I much preferred Erol as Jak’s sadistic rival in the second game than as a diabolical, inhuman world-destroyer in this game. His multi-faceted role is reduced to the common comic-book villain trope we’ve seen so many times before, even in the first game with Gol and Maia. Perhaps Erol is using this position of unspeakable power as a means to match Jak’s new god-like abilities, sparking up the rivalry to a greater degree. Either or, Jak fights him at the end of the second act in the floating KG factory.

The third act is a race to the necessary units needed to unlock the path to the catacombs. On the way there, Jak calls Damas to escort him down the ruins of Haven City. A catapulted fireball hits the vehicle and it flips over. Jak and Daxter are fine, but Damas is crushed under the weight of it. In his last dying breath, Damas tells Jak to find his son Mar in Haven City where Jak realizes that he is referring to the young Jak from the second game and that Damas is his father. It’s a cliche moment, but it is touching given the relationship Jak and Damas formed through the course of the game. It’s also given plenty of foreshadowing making the revelation believable. Damas used to be the leader of Haven City. Up until the reign of Baron Praxis, the leaders used to be heirs of Mar which we already knew Jak was. Veger catches up with them to tell Jak that he was the reason he was separated from Damas as a child and mocks this revelation like a total assface. They both race to the catacombs.

The following moment is one that pisses off most of the fans, myself included. Jak, Daxter, and Veger all make their way to the depths of the catacombs to find the center of the precursors. All of this biblical pondering about these phenomenal beings for three long games and our heroes (and Veger) find out exactly what they are...three ottsels doing a Wizard of Oz routine. Yes. That’s exactly right. The most powerful beings in the universe, the gods who created the universe are three orange, scrappy rats just like Daxter. Apparently, turning into one was Daxter’s own heroic destiny explaining why the dark eco pool didn’t kill him which is good to know, I guess. Veger also transforms into one after being “blessed” with the precursor's light. Is this supposed to be a joke? We’ve spent all this time marveling at the superbly immaculate technology and rich, magnificent lore of the precursors all this time, and they’re all tiny rodents? Is this taking inspiration from The Holy Mountain, in which searching too deeply for spirituality and using it to transcend our being turns out to be a farce? Some fans are keen on treating this as a joke and think this reveal is brilliant, but I’m in the other camp who feels like I got slapped in the face. This reveals practically ruins all of the mystic elements that make the lore and background of all of these games interesting and unique.The precursor lore is tying the integrity of all of these radically different games together as a cohesive trilogy, and to just sweep the rug under us is just insulting.

Anyways, Jak destroys the darkmaker ship and has a final showdown with Erol who is piloting a gigantic darkmaker walker in the desert. Jak uses the Sand Shark to blast off the kneecaps of the walker and then climbs it to fight face to face with it. It’s by far the easiest final battle of the trilogy, but the scale of it is so epic that it doesn’t matter. After destroying it, Jak and Daxter walk back with a confident stride as the desert sand blows on them. Jak also finally gets some well-deserved tongue action this time, but with Ashelin instead of Keira. The precursors hold a ceremony celebrating Jak and Daxter’s victory and Sig has taken Damas’s throne as leader of Spargus. The precursors grant Daxter a wish for his coveted pair of ottsel pants and Tess inadvertently gets transformed into an ottsel in the process. It’s a win-win situation for Daxter. Daxter and Tess try to kiss, but Jak cockblocks Daxter for a change (HA!) as he is off to see the universe with the precursors. He decides against it in order to stay behind with his friends. I never pegged Jak for the sentimental type.

The first Jak and Daxter game used inspiration from the platformers of the previous generation to make something that surpassed them in a myriad of ways. The second game was built upon the first one with a radically new direction inspired by Grand Theft Auto to make a brilliant open-world and platformer hybrid. The third game merely uses the previous two games as its main inspiration which is common when a series is set in its ways and the developers have run out of ideas. Jak 3 is guilty of many common practices that third entries often use; accessibility in the form of easing the difficulty, reusing the same settings and characters, and wrapping up the overarching story hastily in this case, a fucking joke at the expense of the integrity of the game’s lore . Jak 3 is still a great game because its backbone is set off two incredible games, but it’s a meager sequel because it doesn’t offer too much in terms of new content and a lot of it feels watered-down compared to the first two games. However, perhaps the way Jak 3 was directed was essential in wrapping up the series. If Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy is a wide-eyed childhood, Jak II the bombastic teenage years, Jak 3 is the finer-tuned, post-adolescence adulthood. Jak II was rough and Jak 3 did buff the cracks to make for a less jarring experience. I subjectively prefer all of those cracks from Jak II, but I can’t deny that Jak 3 did a great job with its refinement. Like the titular character, the game needed a beacon of light to dark to achieve balance.
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Erockthestrange 2017-07-21T18:44:02Z
2017-07-21T18:44:02Z
8.5
6
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Technically speaking, Jak 3 improves on its predecessor, featuring a more robust open world and nixing the balance issues entirely while bolstering what worked and combining these improvements with another aesthetic shift that works well. But Jak 3, instead of being a gauntlet, is a lazy Sunday afternoon play, going from one dense playstyle to the next with all of two minutes dedicated to each, leading to an adventure even more inconsistent than the last. Upgrades to your character and arsenal come through so thick and fast the design has nowhere to use them intelligently, ultimately leading to a game without real heart. At least the story somewhat makes up for it, with a decently dark extension of Jak 2's ending and an absolutely bonkers swerve at the end.
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Lowlander2 2017-08-25T18:52:19Z
2017-08-25T18:52:19Z
3.0
1
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Haha, wow.

Little did I know when I mentally compared Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy to Bubsy 3D that one of its sequels would very nearly match it blow-by-blow for sheer awfulness. Jak 3 almost entirely lacks any redeeming features - its story feels lazily tacked on as an excuse to milk the Jak franchise, the new weapon upgrade system is a nice idea shoddily implemented and they haven't improved the gunplay itself since Jak II (where it wasn't exactly good anyway), the potentially game-saving cheats and abilities are introduced far too late on, and its unimaginative racing sections (yes, we get it, you've watched Mad Max) are far too frequent when you consider that this is legitimately, without question, the single worse racing simulator ever created. At least Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing is funny. Oh, and did I mention that you can't even leave out the racing sections if you don't like them, like you could leave out side-missions on The Precursor Legacy if they annoyed you? Play it on the Vita, as I did, and things get even worse - the framerate is so poor that you have to look away from the screen every 5 minutes to let your eyes recover, and the L2/R2 controls from the PS2's dualshock controller have been mapped to the console's rear touchpad, which I'm sure is absolutely fine for people with three hands and an extra set of eyes on stalks. There's no point even having the option to boost in a race if you're going to accidentally look out of your back window, open a menu, or change to a first-person view every time you try to use it. I'm not going to pretend I've played enough ports to be able to confident declare what the worst of all time is, but this surely must be a contender. The subtitles don't even work half the time.

Let's not allow the beatification of Naughty Dog in the wake of Uncharted and The Last of Us to cloud the fact that this steaming pile of shit came out of the same company.
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Iai 2016-04-17T18:34:38Z
2016-04-17T18:34:38Z
0.8
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Catalog

paillou Jak 3 2024-06-14T18:09:01Z
2024-06-14T18:09:01Z
4.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Megistotherium Jak 3 2024-06-14T08:48:13Z
PS3 • XNA / XSA
2024-06-14T08:48:13Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Compilation
silverspork Jak 3 2024-06-09T21:34:31Z
2024-06-09T21:34:31Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
thekoreanone Jak 3 2024-06-06T23:05:43Z
2024-06-06T23:05:43Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
homoqenic Jak 3 2024-06-03T12:00:51Z
2024-06-03T12:00:51Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Shivam Jak 3 2024-05-30T11:16:11Z
2024-05-30T11:16:11Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
sadgirl2023 Jak 3 2024-05-28T17:43:43Z
PS2 • XNA
2024-05-28T17:43:43Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Cognizant_Koala Jak 3 2024-05-27T13:22:41Z
2024-05-27T13:22:41Z
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
sadgirl2023 Jak 3 2024-05-24T00:56:19Z
PS4
2024-05-24T00:56:19Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
sadgirl2023 Jak 3 2024-05-24T00:56:04Z
2024-05-24T00:56:04Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
avoidbeing Jak 3 2024-05-21T22:07:42Z
PS2 • AU / NZ
2024-05-21T22:07:42Z
3.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
MrFlobe Jak 3 2024-05-20T22:09:02Z
2024-05-20T22:09:02Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Content rating
ESRB: T
Player modes
Single-player
Media
1x DVD
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In collections

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  • teasp4oon 2020-04-12 22:52:10.025917+00
    "Let's not allow the beatification of Naughty Dog in the wake of Uncharted and The Last of Us to cloud the fact that this steaming pile of shit came out of the same company."

    Naughty Dog didn't do the ports, so there.
    reply
    • Burninate 2023-01-31 17:44:43.222092+00
      This game is good, an interesting take on contemporary platformers by integrating gta and open world elements in an unusual setting. It's arguably not as good as the first one but I find it more interesting than the second. I can't understand what can motivate somebody to make that quote
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  • 80C 2023-02-16 21:40:47.679354+00
    If you were looking for "Moonlight Radiation", this is the wrong page.
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  • hippopcrates 2023-02-17 16:31:59.482395+00
    "play it on the Vita, as I did" ohhhhhhhhh
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  • luna128 2024-03-04 02:38:53.74375+00
    I'm only part way through, but unfortunately I'm finding this to have the same exact issue that Crash Warped suffers from. Overreliance on vehicle gimmicks instead of presenting mostly fun new missions inside of the existing gameplay style. The missions are MUCH easier than part 2, but also more frustrating, because cars have a propensity to lose control and flip over speed bumps in the dunes. Tapping brake brings you to an immediate halt, and power sliding conserves none of your momentum. These issues rarely impede your progress, but it feels awful, and because of how forgiving the checkpoint system is, most missions offer zero sense of accomplishment & feel like they drag out beyond their welcome. I completed most of Jak 2's missions without too much trouble and felt they were the perfect level of challenge. This games entire first couple hours is either meaningless combat tutorial drivel that a baby could do, or shitty vehicle segments that interrupt the flow of the game..I would go as far.as to say Jak 2's notoriously poor-handling zoomers and traffic-filled city is more enjoyable and consistent to navigate than the open wasteland here. What a disappointment. Will update when finished
    reply
    • luna128 2024-03-06 03:41:26.956112+00
      update: it never got any better
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