Crazy Taxi

7.0 Overall Score

Written by on December 6, 2010 in

My first dose of Crazy Taxi came at an arcade in Nevada. I’m normally not a big fan of driving games, but the cartoony graphics and loud music drew me in for a taste. From the deposit of my first 4 quarters I was addicted. I never owned a Dreamcast, so sadly my fixes were far and few between. I even bought The Simpsons: Road Rage for the original Xbox hoping that it would give me the same enjoyment, but I was sadly disappointed. 11 years later my waiting and praying has finally been answered. Crazy Taxi has been released on the Xbox 360.

Crazy Taxi is just like its name implies. Crazy. You play as 1 of 4 taxi drivers, whose sole purpose is to taxi people around town, earning tips and fares for fast driving and disobeying the law. When you pick up a person, a green arrow appears pointing you in the direction of the destination, as well as a picture of the target location. Fares differ in length and time allowed, so it could take you anywhere between 10 and 60 seconds to reach your destination. Once you reach your destination you have to stop within a designated zone. You can then go on to pick up your next person. If you don’t make it to the destination within the time allotted then the person will hop out of the taxi and you will have to find a new person to drive. People can be found in parks, on sidewalks, in subway tunnels, and even underwater. Your car can go literally anywhere within the San Francisco lookalike town.

There are 3 modes within the game; Arcade, Original, and Crazy Box. Arcade and Original have you delivering passengers to their destinations, just in different regions in each mode. You can play by the arcade rules in which you gain time by delivering passengers, or can play in increments of 3, 5, or 10 minutes. Crazy Box is a challenge mode in which you play on a closed course, completing driving tasks such as knocking down bowling pins, jumping a certain distance off of a ramp, or popping balloons in an allotted time.

Crazy Taxi is not the same game you played in the arcade or on the Dreamcast. SEGA updated the game by including achievements, leaderboards, and enhanced graphics. Don’t expect much in this graphics update though, as Crazy Taxi began as a Dreamcast game. However, this isn’t a bad thing because the mediocre graphics are a part of why I loved the game in the first place, just like how the original Legend of Zelda’s graphics make it iconic as well.

The biggest flaw within the game is the controls. It took me a while to relearn how to perform a Crazy Dash, which is essential if you want to get to your destination as fast as possible. Reading the controls page is complicated and I had to look up a video tutorial online to teach me how to accelerate faster. The game would have benefited from a tutorial mode. Another disappointment with the game was that all the in-game advertisements had been removed. Driving passengers to “Pizza Hut” or “Kentucky Fried Chicken” was iconic of Crazy Taxi and now driving people to “Pizza Place” or “Fried Chicken Shack” doesn’t give me the same euphoric feeling.  Music from The Offspring and Bad Religion was also removed from the game, leaving the soundtrack to be lacking and mediocre at best.

Overall, Crazy Taxi takes me back to my childhood. If I had to choose between this version and the original arcade version, I would pick the arcade in less than a heartbeat. Despite missing some of my favorite elements such as advertising and the iconic music, Crazy Taxi delivers that nostalgic feeling I have been missing for years.

Crazy Taxi is rated E for Everyone and is out now on the PSN and Xbox Live Arcade.

A copy of Crazy Taxi was provided to TMG for the purpose of evaluation and review.

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Author: Loren Nikkel View all posts by
Hardcore Xbox and occasional PC gamer. I love to play multiplayer and co-op games where strategy is key.

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