Review by miffo
"It's been a year, and I still enjoy it!"
It's Crazy Taxi! One of the Dreamcast's first big titles, Crazy Taxi came out in early 2000, and I had mine preordered since '99. What's even better is that it came with a free pair of fuzzy dice in the mail! But I won't bore you with my talk of over-sized stuffed dice, and get on with the game:
There is an inner logic...
You take on the role of one of four taxi drivers, and set out to make as much money as possible. Find a customer, pick them up, take them to their destination, and get paid for it...simple. As the port of an arcade game, you get a quick rush and loads of fun packed into one fifteen minute run. You start out in San Francisco from either Arcade or Original, which are both two different variations of the same city. Either one you choose, your goal is the same and you must stop within the range of a person before taking them to wherever they might want to go. Destinations include real life locations such as Tower Records and KFC, plus other landmarks such as the church and bus station. Meanwhile, the clock is running out and precious seconds are added upon a successful delivery—continue playing like so until the time runs out, and shoot for the high score!
The A and B buttons switch gears and can be used to give yourself a speed boost. Other than that, controls are simple and the trigger buttons control your speed. Weaving in and out of travel and jumping over gaps give your costumer a bigger thrill, and add a few dollars to your overall profit. In the end, you're given a rank on how much cash you made...what's YOUR high score?
...and we're taught to stay far from it...
With the release of Crazy Taxi 2, is the original still worth buying? In my opinion, yes. I liked Crazy Taxi much better than the sequel, and never tire of it! It's also down to the low price of $20, so that's just another reason to get it over the second one. And despite the PS2 release, the Dreamcast version is still cheaper and has easier control.
...it is simple and elegant...
There isn't much to it, outside of what I already covered. With that in mind, it will still last forever and can always be used for a quick burst of excitement. No multiplayer modes or VMU games, but what you do have is the Crazy Box. This is a set of mini games designed to help improve your skills, and they get tougher as you move up the latter. Beat them all, and unlock a new vehicle!
Keeping it simple is fine nonetheless, especially if you make it as pretty as possible. And this game is nothing short of pretty! The lighting effects are superb, and watching your shiny car reflect in the sun is always a graphical treat. The textures are good as well. As far as sound goes, you have decent sound effects along with punk music from Offspring and Bad Religion. Some of the music gets repetitive after a while, but I still enjoy it for the most part.
...but is cruel and antithetic...
This game is not without its share of problems, and while minor, they do exist. Some noticeable pop up lies in the background, and can be annoying at times. There are also occasional glitches that seem out of place and will usually make you laugh. Other than that, the only other thing I would like fixed is more extras and less repetitive songs. All in all, Crazy Taxi is worth owning!
...and there's no effort to reveal it!
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 08/15/01, Updated 08/15/01
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