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That One Level / Jak and Daxter

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  • Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy:
    • Spider Cave. It's friggin' HUGE, and extremely confusing to navigate. There are massive pits of Dark Eco everywhere, so your jumping skills need to be dead on and you have to be very, very careful. This wouldn't be so much of a problem if its Power Cells weren't some of the most gruelling, tedious and difficult to get in the game, and it's filled with tough enemies. It doesn't help that a lot of it is a borderline Blackout Basement either.
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    • To a lesser extent, Snowy Mountain, if you're going for 100%. Finding the last few Precursor Orbs is maddening if you forgot about that one Iron Crate in the ice canyon that can only be opened with the Yellow Eco Vent (which in turn requires you to find a secret area in a different zone to unlock the vent, and then enduring a platform hell).
    • The Precursor City is also nasty if you're hunting for all Power Cells. It is full of either electrified water or Dark Eco, there is a plenty of timed missions combined with heavy platforming (one of which basically requires the roll move to be mastered), has nasty enemies (like guys that you have to dive-attack that appear during timed puzzle) and some rooms (especially those with timed platforms above the electrified water) are a complete maze.
    • Boggy Swamp is another aggravating one. Unlike just about every other level in the game (only Precursor City comes even close), it's a single long, winding obstacle course, with only just enough side areas and looping paths to make it potentially confusing to navigate, meaning that if the player decides partway into it that they want out (which given its intimidating themeing and non-stop grind of fairly tricky platforming, players may well want to)... well, you can't. Even better, the end of the level is a drop off a short cliff back to the start of the level, which does not trigger any shortcut back up it again, so if the player hasn't cleared it 100% by the time they do that, they will have to do the whole level over again to pick up what they missed. Oh, and also, the level is full of timed spike gates, which have deceptively large hit boxes, never retract fully, and can damage the player even if they run into them from the sides.
  • Jak II: Renegade:
    • The tank chase during the 'Blow up Ammo at Fortress' mission includes screwy camera controls, Check-Point Starvation and very little room for error as you run away from a large tank armed with a grinder and dual cannons.
    • The rockslide segment during the Mountain Temple Mission. The rocks fall in completely at random, move unpredictably, and when you get hit, they push you down the slope to retry the segment. They are slow enough to catch you if hiding behind ledges, and can hit you in mid-air. The cherry on the cake is that the camera is zoomed in, ruining your depth perception!
    • Escape from the Water Slums: you're attacked by waves of Mooks and your room to maneuver is extremely limited because you're limited to very narrow walkways (while you can normally swim in the water, it hosts an insta-kill bot in this particular stage). Worth noting is that the dropships will shoot on you if you try to pass under them while they didn't drop every Krimzon Guard, but quickly performing punch-jump-punch will confuse them into them being unable to hit you, making mission much easier.
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    • "Hunt Haven Forest metal heads" requires you to find and kill thirty Metal Heads, all of which are invisible and have ranged attacks. Expect to get shot at from all directions and have no idea where the shots are coming from. It becomes more difficult if you kill a few, die and then retry the mission, because the respawned Metal Heads will lack the glowing Skull Gems and so become even harder to spot. It is easier if you realise that the Metal Heads' locations are highlighted on the map in your menu.
    • "Destroy Ship at Drill Platform" is done entirely in the Gunpod, save for the brief sections where you move between Gunpods. The first section involves killing a massive number of hover guards who fly in from all directions. The Gunpod will overheat if you shoot too long (preventing you from firing until it cools down) and is fairly fragile. On Hero Mode, the enemies become even tougher and most players may be unable to get through this section unless they know to shoot at the centre of enemies (as hitting them anywhere else sends them spinning away, forcing you to aim again). After that, you actually need to destroy the eponymous ship. This requires you to destroy the numerous turrets along its surface, which pop out one at a time to shoot at you. You still have to deal with hover guards at the same time, though thankfully not as many as before.
    • The last trip to KG Fortress to rescue your friends is grueling. The entire mission has no checkpoint, and first you have to battle an army of KG guards including a jet-pack version and the one with golden armor that takes more hits and that appeared just before this mission. This is followed by a platforming over bottomless pits, where most of the (small) platforms are sentry guns, followed by a jetboard segments with either open arcs of electricity or someone/something shooting at you again. This is capped by another ambush by KG, but now they are also shooting at you through the roof, so you cannot put them out of commission, and a room with small robots spawning indefinitely (though thankfully they don't shoot). To do this, you can take 3 hits, and there are 2 healing crates at maximum. Good luck.
    • The boost ring race against Erol is particularly rage inducing. The course is long and difficult, pedestrians get in your way and slow you down when hit with alarming regularity, and your opponent will do everything in his power to push you off course, since missing a single ring causes you to fail the mission. Even worse, Erol has no such restriction; in fact there is one ring in particular that he almost never actually bothers to hit. Rubber-Band A.I. is in full effect. As an added "screw you" to the player, winning the race opens up some new side missions for precursor orbs — one of which is, you guessed it, doing the whole race over again!
    • The Titan Suit missions can be quite difficult. Sure, the Titan Suit is much more durable than Jak and can kill Metal Heads in one hit, but it's also much slower, so it's impossible to evade attacks in the suit. It is actually easier to defeat enemies by getting out of the suit and fighting on foot, and this is recommended for dealing with the fast-firing rapid gunners. The third and final mission is the most difficult because it takes place underwater, meaning you can never get out of the suit (until the end) and have to deal with an oxygen meter as well.
    • Getting the Gold times in the Air Racer races, as they feature very unconventional handling compared to all the other vehicles in the game. If you never played Wipeout, getting used to the idea of turning before you get to the corner is extremely hard to wrap your head around. If you go up one of the ramps on the sides of the track, you'll flip and lose tons of time. Take a significant hit and your Air Racer won't be able to go at top speed! And if you mis-time your turn you'll go flying into a wall and blow up, ending the race. The cherry on top is that getting the Gold times requires you to nail five near-perfect laps to have even a shot at beating them. It's maddening.
      • The Class 2 race, counter-intuitively enough, is the hardest, because there's no way to quickly cut in front of the other racers, who will box you in if you get caught in the middle of the Tour De France-style peleton group. Even worse is that quickly after that you have to take a boost-assisted leap over a long and narrow gap for a shortcut, which can be ruined by so much as the lightest touch by another racer and cause you to fly into a column and blow up, ending the race. Oh, thought you could Take a Third Option by taking the second shortcut? Too bad, it starts in the landing zone of the first shortcut, getting you side-swiped and blown up with no warning. Have fun!
  • Jak 3: Wastelander:
    • The Daxter Pac-Man minigame is incredibly frustrating, but it is easier once you realize that you can speed up Daxter's movement.
    • Missiles follow the vehicle you're on all the way to the docks area. You have to go around the docks, shooting buoys to make them light up so the missiles will go for them instead of you. The missiles are fewer than five feet behind you at all times; only one (out of around seven) will attack the buoys at a time; you have to fly low enough that the missiles will lock on to the buoys, but rapid changes in altitude will usually cause the missiles to catch up; you can't just stay as low as possible because of the low bridges in the area; the missiles don't always lock on to the buoys; you can't turn too sharply or for too long; you can't go straight for too long; and even if you're doing it perfectly, they'll catch up anyway.
      • This in no way forgives the mission, but you are rewarded by seeing the Naughty Ottsel's mascot get his head blown off when you get rid of the last missile. It's a much better reward than the one you get from the Slam Dozer mission with Damas, which may be the biggest Tear Jerker in the game, followed by another vehicle-based mission that may lead one to throw his or her controller at a wall.
    • Hello level "stick Daxter on a rocket at a gazillion miles an hour and make him try to get through accelerator rings that have handily been placed all around the harbour, whilst avoiding buildings and constantly accelerating". The result of your constant crashing is a surprisingly chirpy Daxter making a sarcastic comment about your skill. Thankfully, you don't have to avoid people or even vehicles, which are knocked aside if you hit them.
    • Something similar to 'rocket' example appears quite early into the game, except it's lizard who provides propulsion this time. The mission of catching three lizards consist of first: getting near one with the car, at which point Daxter jumps on it and second (the hard) part: steer lizard into the prepared pen. Note that the lizard runs fairly quickly, cannot be slowed and any collision with anything will result in Daxter biting the dust. By the way, mission is done in a maze with kind of limited movement. Worse yet, there are cacti over which you have to jump, or else lizard gets killed. Thankfully, the game doesn't reset the number of lizards you caught when you fail.
    • There is an unfair race near the beginning of the game, where you have to race a group of monks on a leaper lizard. The problem is that hitting a pedestrian will slow your leaper down, thus forcing you to constantly restart to get an optimal randomly-generated crowd. On top of that, the monks can damage you with their leapers (which of course you can't do), causing you to come to a full stop. Fun!
    • The mission "Defend Spargus from attack", where enormous Dark Maker robots are approaching the beachfront and you're the only one in their way. There are way too many targets you have to hit on them for just one of the deathbots-from-hell to blow up; your turret catches fire; and if any of them make it, you immediately die. Not helping matters is how easily the target markers blend in, despite being glowing red.
    • Both missions done on The Dark Ship. The first one requires you to use a carbon-copy of the Titan Suit, as clunky and slow as ever, and while this one has a shield, if it get overwhelmed it's gone forever. The enemies are usually fast dark makers in groups. Destroy Dark Ship then has the part with Light Flight that is just ridiculous. It's bad enough it doesn't control very well but when you're at the mercy of using it through large gaps...
    • Any level that forces you to use the Sand Shark, a stylish combination of terrible steering, weak machine guns, pathetic jumping ability, and a remarkable tendency to roll over at every conceivable opportunity. This includes the penultimate mission against Errol's Dark Maker. Enjoy!
    • Artifact hunts. Both are done on time limits without single checkpoint while being attacked by the Marauders. The first one is done in Dune Buggy, meaning you can't fight back. The second one leads through the section with ramps where failing to jump (easy without turbo boost) means failing the entire mission.
    • Chasing down marauders on the Dune Hopper also has its issues. You have to hunt down a number of marauders while dealing with abuse from other marauders, in a car with an undependable grenade launcher and handling bad enough that it could skid out of control while parked. Oh, and the whole thing's timed, but you also fail instantly if you fall too far behind, and the game does not warn you when this is about to happen.
  • From Daxter, the Lumber Mill. It's huge and confusing, full of enemies, and has irritating obstacles. Especially the part where you have to fly above a lake, where the fish jump out and kill you if you barely fly over it, while you're dealing with spinning platforms and temporary platforms, and with not enough eco pickups. Your main objective forces you to wait for eternity on a switch while the bug zapper charges up, while the giant bug drops "bombs" at you. It's one of those stages that takes forever.
  • Jak X, thanks in no small part to the extremely slippery handling with a fully-upgraded Engine and Turbo.
    • It has one mission where, as part of the storyline, your weapons are disabled. Not only does this make you a sitting duck for seeker missiles and prevent you from blowing up your enemies, it adds the annoyance factor of continually hearing the missiles you'll inevitably get in your first and only yellow eco weapon pack locking on to enemies you can't shoot with them.
    • Waterworks Circuit. It is full of sharp angles, tight paths and stumps that will destroy your vehicle if you won't notice them. Which you won't because of explosions and blur as you try to speed through the circuit.
    • Waterworks Circuit's brother, Sewer Raceway, is just as bad. In your skid turns and power slides, you'll be getting a lot of "skid" and "slide", not so much the other stuff. For bonus points, while you're screaming around the track in a barely controllable state, the track fakes you out with the finish line - you pass through the chamber it's in twice in any given lap, with the finish line visible both times - very deflating on your first go!
    • Haven City is quite possibly more annoying than the Waterworks Circuit! It has a lot more side-line obstacles, 90-degree corners with no curve to them and 90-degree corners with no curve to them with ramps, which utterly destroy your ability to actually turn the car because you've been launched into the air!
  • Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier: In one mission, you need to Daxterjack several missiles to prevent them from blowing up the Phantom Blade. This is relatively fine on normal mode, but in Hero Mode the timer shortens dramatically - which is an issue, because there are no upgrades that improve Daxterjacking!

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