After years of bragging about his accomplishments, Jak's fuzzy sidekick Daxter is putting his money where his muzzle is on March 21. Taking place in the two years between Jak & Daxter and Jak II, during which series hero Jak was imprisoned and tortured, the predictably-named Daxter follows the hyperactive otter-weasel creature as he searches for Jak in the big, scary future.
While he's looking, though, Daxter needs to fend for himself, and that means getting a job. Bragging in a bar lands him a new career as an exterminator, and so the game revolves mostly around exploring the grimy underbelly of Haven City and smacking around hordes of insects. Some of these are tiny, swarming pests, but most are big, mean, metallic and hungry. Unfortunately for Daxter, the only things standing between him and a new career as giant-bug poop are a backpack full of toxic spray and a glorified flyswatter.
Luckily, the little guy turns out to be a hero in his own right, able to slide down rails, climb walls like a gecko and beat up bugs dozens of times his size. He can also drive hover-scooters and a sort of floating crop-duster, which are clunky but make for a nice break from running around on foot. Especially when you’re only two feet tall.
Not that being on foot is so bad. The gameplay is straightforward, easy-to-control platform-hopping, with plenty of close-up fighting and a touch of gunplay. The latter comes in the form of Daxter’s bug spray; controlling like a flamethrower, it stuns enemies and lets him get in close with his flyswatter. Spray it into an open flame, and it becomes a flamethrower for real, scorching away pesky cobwebs and whatever else happens to get in Daxter's way. It also doubles as a short-term jetpack, enabling Daxter to levitate across gaps, and he'll get to levitate for longer if you can angle him into the fuel power-ups that invariably float above chasms.