Back to Jak. Not Jak to the future.
Us Sony platformer fans were looking forward to Jak on PS3, after seeing Ratchet and Clank strut their stuff on PS3 and looking 10 times better than before, we could only imagine how Jak would look on the system. Yes. We knew that Naughty Dog was busy making Uncharted 2, we knew that ND didn't alternate franchise each year like Insomniac. But a little bit of hope remained that ND could choose to make a new Jak.
What happens? On the 1st of April 2009 (known as April Fools 2009) a day after a worldwide (except UK) PS2 price cut, Sony announced a new Jak and Daxter game was to be released on the PS Blog, not made by the creators Naughty Dog and not on the PS3. At this point, I'm pretty sure every Jak fan was in shock, I can only imagine the pure chaos on official J&D forums.
I myself, as seen by my comments on N4G were very, very confused and I know a lot of people saw this as pretty a much cock up on behalf of Sony and an insult to the importance of the franchise, especially being passed down to High Impact Games instead of Ready at Dawn who did the excellent 'Daxter' not to mention it was on PS2 and PSP.
Fact is, I already heard of a Jak PSP for such a long time, even before joining N4G. I just didn't expect it to be made by High Impact Games. In fact, as crazy as it sounds, I was thinking that with ND working on Uncharted as a franchise these days, maybe Insomniac could take up the reins and just use the Ratchet engine for a new Jak and even have them meeting up with each other for an epic fan service cross over.
High Impact Games are mainly ex-Insomniacs and pretty much are the Insomniac equivelent of Ready at Dawn being ex-'Dogs. What I didn't actually get during the posts on the announcement articles on N4G was the pure hate for High Impact Games. One thing I must say is that R&C:SM was the same shrunk down perfection as Daxter was earlier on the PSP, it had everything spot on for a Ratchet title. I completed R&C:SM about 3 times just for kicks as it was such an incredible handheld game. I still aim to get Secret Agent Clank, but it's still so wildishly expensive everywhere.
I noticed on the Jak articles that day, a lot was said, a lot of people were basically disappointed and now, people just seemed of just let the whole idea and news go from the radar, some comments follow, may be slightly edited for reading convenience;
"I have waited and waited for news on this game,along with Team Icos next game for what seems like ages,and to be honest I am unhappy that a series with this potential will not be getting all it could get.A PS3 version is what I wanted..." Posted by Freak of Nature
Yep. Same here. Jak should have so much more respect as a Sony title back on the PS2 and pretty much being the main Sony franchise to get a spin off on PSP.
"We seem to have already lost Sly Cooper this gen,unless they
announce something after Infamous.Now Jak? At least we still have
Ratchet.But where oh where are my quirky action/adventure platfomers?"
Later post by Freak of Nature replying to one of my comments.
As one of my old blogs pointed out, this generation, platformers and general action/adventures are on the way out, deep decline. The fact that Sony don't seem to be supporting it as much as they used to back on PS2 and PSone is getting quite scary. Not even Nintendo seem to be that bothered. Due to the current state of the economy in the gaming industry, a platform game might turn out to be a heck of a financial risk.
"Regardless, just because they say it isn't an April Fool's doesn't mean that they are telling the truth. As much as I love Jak, I'm hoping for April Fool's because we need a PS3 Jak now".
Damn right. We should of had a mention of a PS3 Jak by now, especially with Ratchet carrying off the Sony platforming/action/adventure bastion by himself and all most inhouse developers making more mature series.
"what?? No PS3 version? you've got to be kidding me, at least the PSP got something.
EDIT: Hold up, this game is being made by some second rate developers? Guess it should come on PSN too at least. btw i didnt see your message ^"
I wouldn't rate High Impact Games as 'second rate developers', these guys probably have as much potential as Ready at Dawn but haven't got given a gig like GoW like R@D did to gain popularity, although, I noticed R@D immediatly once I got my hands on Daxter. Jak as a gig could do the same for HIG as GoW did for R@D.
"Stop asking for J&D on the PS3! >_< For the love of god people. IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN.
Crash = PS1
J&D = PS2
Uncharted = PS3
New IP = PS4
*picks up cricket bat*
*waits for next person to ask*"
I don't honestly think so, Crash was a bit of an unusual case, the rights belonged pretty much jointly with Universal and SCE, then later, Konami instead of SCE, then Seirra, which then turned into Activision-Blizzard. Since Sony own Naughty Dog as inhouse now since PS2 (didn't on PSone, they belonged to Universal, as did Insomniac) and Jak as an IP. Naughty Dog COULD still make a Jak game, main problem is the lead designer of the Jak and Crash series and once head honcho of ND, Jason Rubin left to pursue his own aspirations away from game development. I don't think that ND wanted to abandon Crash as a whole and they still seem to tease Jak in Uncharted with a rare treasure that looks like an Precursor Orb and Drake wearing 'Ottsel' scuba gear in the start scene on the boat and even mention revistiting Jak in interviews.
"WTF!? I hope it's Fool's joke. New Jak game HAS to be made by Naughty Dog and has to come to the next gen IMO. "
"NOOO!!!! I want a next-gen Jak and Daxter game. I've been a huge follower of the Jak and Daxter series since it first came out and still own all of them for the PS2... I've been wanting a PS3 version for ages.
The screenshots look "o.k.", but to me Jak 2 and Jak 3 looked a lot better... this Jak game looks like it's less gritty and mature than Jak 2 and 3 as well.
After Naughty Dog finishes up Uncharted 2, I seriously hope they go back and make at LEAST 1 more Jak and Daxter and I want it on the PS3.
Oh well, I guess I'll just buy the PS2 version... I'm a huge Jak and Daxter fan, so I've gotta buy it. High Impact Games better not screw it up."
If ND wasn't availble, I'd personally go for Ready at Dawn, due to the perfection of Daxter feeling so much like Jak2. A Jak game should indeed be on PS3, but bear in mind Ratchet and Kratos were on PSP before a PS3 sequels appeared. This could well very be the same, fingers crossed. Again, why would R@D screw it up? Give them a chance, Size Matters was brilliant and the early footage for the game looked dreadful, the finished game looked great, if you ask me.
The later IGN preview article made everything a little clearer and sounds to me what will be a great 'filler' Jak game, with hope and maybe at the back of the instruction book a 'Coming Soon' might be printed. We could maybe see a later Jak after Uncharted 2. After all, I will say this now, ND and Sony would be complete fools for a Jak not to appear on PS3.
I'll leave you with this I discovered sometime last year. Sounds as if it's on an island, just like the IGN article said with the new game, maybe ND just outsourced the game to HIGs, the source of this footage was supposedly made by a member of ND hosted on his Youtube page originally as part of a showreel, this is a compilation of all the videos which I believe are now removed;
...Isn't it great to hear Daxter say new material?
Sorry for singling out people here with the comments, but relax, I think it's going to be a great game, in good hands and maybe a memory jogger to get people who get either the PSP or PS2 version to migrate to the PS3 IF the series is continued and I think it still will. Anyway, I don't have to kill anyone in the gaming industry now as I comically said before, I have a new Jak arriving, just not on the platform I initially expected but its better than none.