A Complete Guide to Jak X; Combat Racing For the PS2


Jak X: Combat Racing is the fourth and final Jak game for the PS2. There is a 5th game, Daxter for PSP, but that one is for the Playstation Portable, not the Playstation 2. Here is everything you need to know about Jak X: Combat Racing.

The Story:

Fresh from his adventure saving the world from the Dark Makers in Jak 3, Jak and Daxter have been invited to a reading of Krew’s will in Kras City (Jak worked for-and later had to kill Krew in Jak 2). At the reading of Krew’s will, they meet Krew’s daughter, Rayne, who obviously got her looks from her mother. Everyone drinks to Krew’s death, then the hologram video plays and Krew tells them all that they have been poisoned. Everyone has to race and win the Grand Championship to get the antidote for the poison. The only thing is, this is combat racing, everyone has weapons and they are not afraid to use them. Jak must survive the races to get the antidote.

Characters: There are many characters in Jak X, more than in any other game I have ever played. Not all of them race.

Jak X: Jak has become very hardened after his adventures in Jak II and Jak 3. This game makes no mention of Jak’s many powers (and does not put them to use).

Daxter: Daxter is Jak’s annoying sidekick. He used to be human, but he fell into a pool of Dark Eco and changed into the fur-ball that he is now.

Ashlein: She is the daughter of Baron Praxis (the evil leader of Haven City that died in Jak II). She has become hardened after all she has been through and is now a tough, no nonsense girl. She has also been poisoned.

Torn: He is much like Ashlein, but he rebelled against her father before she did.  Torn and Ashlein are a couple, and He was also poisoned.

Rayne: She is Krew’s daughter and the one who poured out the poisoned drink at the reading of the will, though she swears that she had no knowledge of the poison. There is a secret about Rayne that we do not find out until the end of the game.

Razer: Razer is the previous winner of the Grand Championship. He is flamboyant and likes the finer things in life, but he is ruthless on the track and it is much harder to beat races after he joins the game.

UR-86: UR-86 is a robot. When you see him, it is obvious that he is one of the robots from the Krimson guard (Jak II and Jak 3). He is very good on the track and is much harder to beat than most other racers.

Pecker: He is Daxter’s friend/antagonizer. Pecker is a talking bird. I do not know the story with him. Pecker is always the one getting all the good jobs, like right hand man to the leader of Spargus (Jak 3), Speaker of Onin (Jak II), and now, co-host of the G.T. Blitz show.

G.T. Blitz: This man loves to hear himself talk! He is the host of the G.T. Blitz show, which covers the racing-something like the show that covers NASCAR. His father was also a racer, but he was killed in an act of sabotage.

Krew: He might have died two years before, but he still interferes with many people’s lives. Krew is the reason that everyone is racing. He set it up so that the poison would not kill anyone until the grand championship was over. Therefore, if the person who won the race were on Krew’s team, those who were poisoned would get the antidote to the poison.

Samos: Samos the Sage is master of the healing Eco and has raised Jak ever since he was five. He is one of only four characters that have been in all four Jak games. The other three are Jak, Daxter, and Kiera.

Kiera: She is Samos’s daughter and Jak’s somewhat girlfriend. She is also a great mechanic.

Kliever: He works for the crime lord Mizo now. He is the one who used to supply the vehicles that Jak would use during Jak 3.

Sig: Sig is a close friend of Jak’s. He was invited to the reading of the will, but wisely stayed away. He shows up later to help Jak get the antidote saying, “That’s why I never drank at work”.

Mizo: He is the nemesis of Krew and the crime lord of Kras City. If Mizo’s racing team wins, everyone who was at the reading of the will dies. Mizo is really another major character, but you will never guess who until you finish the game.

There are also a few other racers, but they don’t count as characters because the only thing they do is race. These racers are Shiv, Edje, and Cutter. In addition, if you play online or play the races that are just for fun, you can unlock Daxter and Pecker as racers. In addition, if you have played the previous three Jak games and they are still saved in your memory card, you can unlock a character using each one. Same holds true for Daxter for PSP. If you hook it to your PS2, then you will be able to get characters from it.

On Screen Meters: You need meters to show you what you have that can be used, where you are, and more.

Red/Green Eco meter: This meter is located in the bottom, left-handed corner of the screen. It is a red circle with a green bar curved around the bottom and a purple bar curved around the top. The green bar tells you how much more damage you can take, the red circle tells you what kind-if any- defensive ammo you have, and the purple bar tells you if your weapons are upgraded.

Blue/Yellow Eco Meter: This meter looks exactly the same as the red/green meter, but is on the bottom, right hand side. The blue bar shows how much turbo you have, and the yellow circle tells you what offensive weapons you have. The purple bar is the same as on the red/green meter.

Map: The small map of the track is located in the top, left-hand corner of the screen. It shows the track’s turns, the location of you, and the location of the other drivers. Sometimes it even shows where mines have been left by other drivers.

Position: The top, right of the screen shows your position in the race. For Artifact, Death match, Sport hunt, and capture races, you see tiny pictures of each racer or team and the scores of each racer. For Circuit, Turbo, freeze rally, and time trial, you get your position, laps, and total time of your race. For Death Race and Rush hour, you get how many points you have, time left, and how many points are needed to get 1st, second, or third place.

Types of Races: There are many different types of races to keep you on your toes and from getting too bored with the game.

Circuit Race: This is the most common race and usually the easiest. Race around the track and try not to get killed

Turbo Dash: This is my favorite type of race. Race around the track trying to power up and shoot as many power cells as possible. Every power cell you shoot also gives you one defensive weapon. (Features the power cells from Jak and Daxter: the Precursor Legacy that hasn’t been seen since that game.)

Freeze Rally: During these races, you are on the track alone. You have to get around the track 2 times in the time appointed. The only way to do that is to hit the freezers to stop time and the turbo to go faster. 2 seconds for blue, 5 for purple, and 10 for red. If you get every freezer on the track, your time is lowered by 10 seconds. This can be very useful.

Death Race: Another race in which you are the only racer, but in this one, there are tons of drone cars that you have to destroy.  Just keep driving and shooting at the cars. You get 1 point on the first lap, 2 on the second, 3 on the third, etc. There was one race where I got to a fifth lap! You also get more points for hitting several cars in a row. Tip, you can use your car itself as a weapon. Just bump it into a drone car and that car will explode.

Rush hour: Much like the Death Race, but the drone cars are coming at you and you have to hit them with your car (no weapons). You get 1 point for green cars, two for blue, and three for red. Double points on second lap, triple on third. Be careful with red cars, as hitting them will give you damage as well as points. Tip: use an off-road vehicle for these, as they are bigger, more stable, and can run the path better.

Time trial: This is not in adventure mode, just exhibition mode. You can race against your ghost of a previous race to see if your time gets better or race against others online.

Death Match: This one is in an arena. Your goal is to kill more than anyone else and try not to be killed. First person to get 10 kills (or the highest amount of kills in the time period) wins.

Sport Hunt: Another arena game. Here, you track down a specific type of target and kill it. Watch out though, as the other players will try to steal your kill out from under you (happened to me several times).

Capture: This is the only game where you play as a team. There are two teams of three (broken down between Krew’s and Mizo’s teams), and you have to get the power cell to your team’s base. If the other team has it, make them drop it and take it. (I have been able to play this and not do anything at all).

Artifact race: The object is to grab artifacts that show up (if you have played Jak 3, then you know this from Wasteland missions). They appear two at a time. Highest score at the end or first to get number of points specified will win.

Assassin: This one doesn’t appear in Adventure Mode. A target is chosen out of the six racers and everyone else tries to kill that target. Most kills wins. Be warned, you may become the target.

Cities you race in:

Spargus: This city was introduced in Jak 3. I find the tracks to be easy.

Kras City: This is where combat racing was created. The tracks can be much harder here. You will definitely have to learn how to drift.

Haven City: Jak and Daxter’s hometown, I find these tracks are the hardest. The worst of the hairpin turns and tight spots.

Icelands: This is my favorite area to race in. Most of the tracks are wide open.

Eco and Weapons:

In the very first Jak game, there were six types of eco: green (health), blue (energy), red (strength), yellow (shooting), Dark (death), and Light (to combat Dark).In Jak II, most of those were gone except for Dark Eco (the source of Jak’s powers), and green Eco (health packs). In Jak 3, Light Eco was returned as the source of a new kind of Jak’s powers (dark and green still kept their status from Jak II). In Jak X, though, every Eco except for Light Eco is used. Blue Eco is turbo, red is for rear-facing weapons, yellow is for front facing weapons, green is for health, and Dark Eco is used to upgrade all of the front and rear-facing weapons. Level one weapons are the regular weapon, level two weapons are the upgrade.

Yellow Eco Weapons: These are your front-facing weapons used only for offense.

Submachine gun: In death match, death races, capture, artifact, sport hunt, and assassin races, this weapon is given to you when you have no other weapons. It does very little damage.

Vulcan Fury Level 1: With 50 shots to use, this weapon does about the same amount of damage as the submachine gun.

Vulcan fury Level 2: A few shots will kill almost any enemy.

Grenade Launchers: Each time you pick these up, you are given three shots to destroy your enemy with.

Level 1: Fragmentation grenades: Shoots three grenades for each shot.

Level 2: Skull Splitter: shoots five grenades for each shot.

Tracking Missiles: You are given two shots with these missiles. In death races, you can actually hit more than one car with each shot. This is one of my favorite weapons.

Level 1: Homing Missile: Each shot shoots two missiles. Just wait for the crosshairs to appear before you shoot.

Level 2: Strike Missiles: Each shot shoots four missiles, destroying anyone you hit (as long as they haven’t put up their shields).

Super Nova: This is a really great weapon, especially if you are last or are in a pack. It destroys everyone in front of you, making it easier to get 1st place. If these weapons are not used within 10 seconds of acquiring them, they will backfire and you will have killed yourself. Only 1 shot.

Level 1: Super Nova: All destroyed cars take 3 seconds to reset.

Level 2: Stellar Nova: All destroyed cars take 5 seconds to reset.

Peace Maker: This weapon is great if you are trying to get into first place, but not so great if you are the one in first place. The only defense is to have a shield. Only one shot.

Level 1: Peace Maker Missile: Destroys first place vehicle. If it passes through another car on the way there, it will do some damage to that car.

Level 2: Super Peace Maker: Destroys first place vehicle, but will also destroy any other it happens to pass through.

Red Eco Weapons: These are the rear-facing weapons that are usually defensive in nature. Most can also be used in offense, especially once you get the Dark Eco upgrades.

Static Mines: These mines are placed on the track and are left there until a car comes close to them. If no car comes close to them, then you can be hurt by your own weapons on the return to that spot.

Level 1: Magno Mine: You leave three small mines on the track that will stick to anyone passing close. The only way to get rid of the mines is to make your car jump.

Level 2: Land Mine: One large, stationary mine that will destroy anyone who runs over it.

Gun Tower: You leave a gun tower behind that will shoot continuous fire at passing enemy vehicles.

Level 1: Gun Tower: The shots are similar to the submachine gun.

Level 2: Missile Tower: This shoots tracking missiles at you until you are out of range.

Smoke Screen: You leave a trail of smoke that no one can see through. It lasts for 30 seconds.

Level 1: Smoke Screen: Plain smoke screen that leaves a trail of smoke for 30 seconds.

Level 2: Shock Screen: The shock screen  is a smoke screen filled with electricity that gives out damage to any car passing through it.

Oil Slick: Makes traction very difficult.

Level 1: Oil Slick: Vehicles loose traction when they hit this, usually making them go into the wall. Lasts for 30 seconds.

Level 2 Flame Slick. Same as oil slick, but it has been caught on fire and will do some serious damage to anyone passing through it. The fire slick also lasts for 30 seconds.

Shield System: This is your best defense against everything, especially the Peace Maker, which has no other defense.  I wish the shield system was given more often.

Level 1: Damage Shield: This not only protects you, it also inflicts a little bit of damage to anyone who bumps into you.

Level 2: Deadly Shield: This shield not only protects you, but completely destroys anyone who bumps into you. A really great tool to use in the common pile-ups during the Death Match .

Saucer Drone: The saucer drones move backward along the track for 2 minutes or until they come into contact with a vehicle. Be careful about them on the return trip if the track is short enough (and they usually are). Both of the saucer drones destroy whoever they come in contact with.

Level 1: Blind Drone: Only follows the ideal racing line and does not come after you.

Level 2 Homing Drone: Follows ideal race line, but also sees and homes in on any vehicle it passes.

Attack Drones: Level 1: Attack Drone: Orbit’s the player’s vehicle and shoots whoever comes within range. Like the submachine gun.

Level 2: Psycho Drone:  Upgraded version of attack drone, much like the upgraded version of Vulcan fury.

Turbo Assist: This fills your turbo to maximum and keeps other players from using their turbo.

Level 1: Turbo Assist: Keeps other vehicles from using turbo for 4 seconds.

Level 2: Ultra Turbo Assist: Keeps other players from using turbo for 6 seconds.

Ending the Game:

The last “real Race” you have is the Yellow Eco Cup, also known as the Grand Championship. You race it just like you did the other 3 Eco Cups, 3 races, person with the highest score at the end wins.

After the last race, you find out who Mizo really is, then he steals the antidote from you and you have to race him and destroy him. This is the closest thing to a boss level in this game. This is very hard and you are given a submachine gun to use when you haven’t been able to pick up any yellow eco weapons. My advice is, get every yellow eco weapon you can and use the submachine gun always. You are not racing to win, you have to pace him, and keep hitting him.

Online and 2-player game-play: This is the only Jak game that has an online feature. Sadly, there are few other players in the Jak X rooms anymore.

You can also play the game in a two-player split-screen mode. This is the only Jak game where 2 player is possible.

By Stephanie A. Smith

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