What’s Next for Naughty Dog’s Jak and Daxter?

In recent years, Naughty Dog has become best known for The Last of Us and Uncharted, two franchises that have sold millions of copies and spawned film or television spin-offs. However, there was a time when Naughty Dog’s flagship franchise was Jak and Daxter, a platformer centered on a boy and his half-otter, half-weasel sidekick. The series kicked off in 2001 with Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy, and during the PS2 and PS3 era it enjoyed great popularity. However, since the release of the Jak and Daxter Collection in 2017, the series has been on hiatus.


For fans of Jak and Daxter, it is only natural to wonder whether Naughty Dog has any plans for the series. Fortunately, there seems to be some activity around the Jak and Daxter IP, so the public could get to enjoy more of its unique universe sooner rather than later. Thought a new Jak and Daxter game seems unlikely, a Jak and Daxter adaptation is in the works.

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A Jak and Daxter Movie

Many would love to see a new Jak and Daxter game. However, that is not the only way to explore the worlds that Jak and his sidekick have been to before. In recent years, Sony has been making a concerted effort to expand the reach of its IPs into other mediums, leading to a movie based on Uncharted and a television adaptation of The Last of Usas well as the upcoming Ghost of Tsushima movie and Twisted Metal show. It has also been confirmed that there is more to come, as Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO Jim Ryan has said there are at least 10 projects in the works.

Ruben Fleischer, who directed 2022’s Uncharted movie, has let slip that Jak and Daxter is one of the next properties getting an adaptation. It is hard to argue that Fleischer is not the person for the job, as Uncharted was currently sits as the sixth highest-grossing video game adaptation of all time. Fleischer may prosper where others have failed, as he would not be the first to attempt to adapt Jak and Daxter. Blockade Entertainment had plans to produce a Jak and Daxter animated feature in 2013, though this never came to fruition.

Jak and Daxter is a series that is perfect for film thanks to its creative fantasy universe borrowing from several genres including sci-fi, steampunk, and Eastern mysticism. In the right hands, a successful Jak and Daxter movie or television series could reignite interest in the franchise, and also allow for the game’s universe to be expanded in meaningful ways.

Jak and Daxter Could Return With PlayStation Plus

It is unlikely that fans will enjoy a new Jak and Daxter game anytime soon. Naughty Dog toyed with the idea of ​​rebooting Jak and Daxter in 2009, and though the studio got a start on it, the ideas and concepts did not seem to align with the spirit of the series. As Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann said, instead of dumping its ideas the studio ditched the Jak and Daxter title, leading to the creation of The Last of Us. It is possible to see a bit of Jak and Daxter‘s DNA in The Last of Usand while many may be glad about Naughty Dog’s choice, Jak and Daxter was left in the dust.

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In 2021, Druckmann and Evan Wells – Naughty Dog’s other co-president – were asked whether the studio will ever return to its kid-friendly franchises. Wells said the studio looked at what Insomniac did with Ratchet and Clank and wishes Naughty Dog could do the same. However, Wells argued that the studio simply does not have enough time and resources. Druckmann reiterated this, saying Naughty Dog has folders of unused concepts and it’s impossible to execute all of them.

The last hope for Jak and Daxter fans may link with PlayStation Plus. In 2022, Sony announced it would be doing a major overhaul of its subscription services, merging PlayStation Plus and PlayStation Now. This new version of PlayStation Plus is split into third parties. The first tier, PS Plus Essential, is equivalent to the current PlayStation Plus, meanwhile the second tier PS Plus Extra allows players to access a catalog of PS4 and PS5 games. The highest tier, PS Plus Premium, offers all these benefits alongside access to a catalog of PS1, PS2, PS3, and PSP games.

Sony has yet to reveal the full catalog for PlayStation Plus Premium, though it has been confirmed that death stranding2018’s god of war, Spiderman, Spider-Man: Miles Morales, mortal kombat 11, and Returnal will be included. However, with over 700 titles planned to feature in the catalog, a Jak and Daxter game or two will likely appear. This will make the franchise more accessible for new gamers who may not have had the opportunity to play them due to backward compatibility limitations. It could also result in a few obscure titles in the series getting renewed attention, such as a PSP spin-off called Daxter from 2006.

For years, the Jak and Daxter series has enthralled fans with its impressive worldbuilding, and the ways its technological innovations pushed gaming forward. It remains an important part of Naughty Dog’s identity and PlayStation’s legacy. The future of the series seems uncertain, but it does not appear as grim as a few years prior. Gamers will probably not be playing Jak and Daxter 4 soon, but the franchise may find a second life on the big screen, and who knows what could come after.

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