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Sony's Slammin' Sequels

Jak and Ratchet sequels rock

By James Stevenson     August 15, 2003

It has been a long few weeks in gamer land, with me finally getting involved in a bit more gaming than usual. The main culprits have included two sequels from Sony that I recently came into possession of code for those being JAK II and RATCHET AND CLANK: GOING COMMANDO. It's been gaming bliss here.


You'd think after my frequent complaints of a summer of monotony that two character action sequels would be on the bottom of my list. But Naughty Dog and Insomniac have both pulled something off and that is significantly deepening excellent games. It's something that rarely happens in this industry, as sequels many times are lackluster.


JAK II occupied some of my time on a recent vacation. Those late nights in the hotel, sitting there with my PS2 while I explored the new world of the game, and all of the new gameplay elements. It reminds me a lot of GRAND THEFT AUTO, which is a good thing that formula isn't quite stale yet.


Meanwhile, FedEx showed up this morning with the preview build of RATCHET AND CLANK: GOING COMMANDO. While I haven't had as much time with this as I would like, it's still got a lot of cool features such as the new experience system, and a ton of new weapons. The circular worlds are wicked, and are an interesting twist on the gameplay.


It's amazing how much I'm looking forward to both of these titles. Sequels

Jak and Daxter attempt to navigate the sewers in JAK II

to platformers turning me on, who would have thought it? The fall may end up being ok after all, with DOOM III, HALF-LIFE 2, MAX PAYNE 2, RATCHET AND CLANK II, JAK II and TONY HAWK UNDERGROUND all taking old franchises in new directions.


So what are you looking forward to this fall? E-mail us at GamersThumb@cinescape.com.


GAMERS ANSWER


Last week we asked what game you'd take with you to a desert island. Here's some responses:


TETRIS.  There is a reason this little puzzler-that-could has appeared on every system ever made: it is very good.  Come to think of it, so has BOMBERMAN.  I'd pick one of those. William Loughrige


It would have to be GRAND THEFT AUTO: VICE CITY.   Even after completion there's always hidden packages, stunts, and just random meaningless violence to perform. Luke Rosati


TIDBITS


ATI is developing a graphics chipset for the Xbox II... Raven Software has completed JEDI KNIGHT: JEDI ACADEMY... Capcom has canceled RED DEAD REVOLVER... FINAL FANTASY XI will ship for the PC in

MADDEN 2004

October...


ON SHELVES


There is nothing coming out worthwhile this week. Seriously, maybe a new EVERQUEST on PC... but even that is iffy. Just keep playing the copy of MADDEN you bought last week, and be glad that the Christmas season is coming soon.

Gamers' Thumb is our weekly Video Game column.

Questions? Comments? Let us know what you think at GamersThumb@cinescape.com.

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