For some the gunplay will be a little unrefined. There's no lock-on ability or target switching, meaning aiming can be a little awkward at times. Jak will simply target whichever enemy is closest and in front of him, which works well enough most of the time. PSP games often suffer due to the handheld's limited control options, but apart from the odd aiming difficulty there's little to complain about here. The camera's smart enough to show you the best view of the action and you can manually move it around using the shoulder buttons.
Daxter is the star of his very own game now (the excellent and imaginatively titled PSP game "Daxter") so he's not content to simply sit on Jak's shoulder for the duration of the adventure. Daxter has his own set of levels, making use of Dark Daxter, a Dark Eco mutated version of the lovable guy that looks like a cross between the Incredible Hulk and the Tasmanian Devil. These levels see Daxter smashing and crashing through enemies and environmental objects, activating switches to solve minor puzzle elements, and generally causing chaos. His tornado spin is the most deadly of his attacks, and also the most fun, letting you leave your brain at the level's start as the enraged beast goes crazy. As fun as these sections are, they do become a little samey after a while and it's a shame Daxter doesn't get to take part in the adventure in a more traditional fashion.
In between the on-foot action you'll be flying around in sky ships, in what feels remarkably like the classic Crimson Skies series. This dogfighting, which takes place in open (to a degree) environments and more closed tunnelled sections, is great fun, with an easy to use targeting system and a ship upgrade mechanic. Some of the collision detection at points seems a little off, with the game indicating you've hit an object when it appeared to pass you by, but it's a minor issue and one that rarely causes trouble.
High Impact Games has been working on the PSP for some time now and it shows. The Lost Frontier is a stunning-looking handheld game, mixing highly detailed models with huge environments that stream without any mid-level loading. Audio work is also superb, with some small pauses in sound as data is accessed from the UMD being the only thing worth complaining about. There appears to be a massive gulf between the presentation in the triple-A PSP games and the rest, and The Lost Frontier is most certainly near the top of the pile.
The wait for a new Jak and Daxter game has been a long one, and we're still waiting for the series to arrive on the PS3 (blame Uncharted and its success for that), but this PSP outing doesn't disappoint. The adventure is fairly short if you don't include the optional side missions, but it's always enjoyable and mixes its various gameplay styles successfully. High Impact Games missed the mark with its Ratchet and Clank spin-off "Secret Agent Clank", but The Lost Frontier more or less nails the Jak and Daxter formula.