July 27, 2000
|VMU Game||Difficulty||Save Size||Vibration||60Hz||50Hz Border|
It may have already been on the shelves for a while in Australia but it has remained one of the strongest selling titles on the Dreamcast to date. Crazy Taxi was released in the arcades in June 1999 and is still one of the most frequented coin-ops. AM3 have handled the conversion to Dreamcast themselves and have added several features not found in the arcade version. Better still, several improvements have been made for the home, including a brand new original course.
As previously mentioned Crazy Taxi is set in 2 different courses. One is straight from the arcade game and the other is an original city. Selecting from 4 drivers you are placed in the city where your job is to pick up passengers and drop them off at their desierd destination. To assist you the game includes a green arrow which helps to guide you. Within a few minute you will soon realise that the arrow doesn't nescarily suggest the quickest route. If you can see a shortcut to a destination, take it. If that means cutting through a park, driving through a crowd of people or going the wrong way along a street, so be it.
Scoring in this game is determined by the amount of money which you have earnt within the time limit. The easiest way to earn money in Crazy Taxi is to pick up passengers and drop them off at thier destination before the timer runs out. Bonuses can be earned by driving close to other cars without hitting them and doing powerslides around the course with the passengers in the car.
There can be no denying the talent that has gone into this game. The frame rate is a usually constant 60fps with only very occasional slowdown which usually occurs in a couple of grass covered spots on the map. One thing that will amaze you is the amount of detail in the cities. There are literally hundereds of people around the city, some wanting taxis, some not. The roads are filled with a variety of traffic which makes your life just that little bit harder.
One good thing about this game is the music. It is made up of real songs from bands such as The Offspring and Bad Religion. Unfortunately, the music soon becomes repeatitive and if you are more of a dance/techno type person, such as myself, it becomes irritating after a while. The sound effects on the other hand are superb. The game is littered with speech and sounds that you would expect from a game such as this.
Crazy Taxi is not the "must-have" game that so many people may have you believe. While the game is enormous fun and the graphics are superb, the game is just too repeatitive after prolongued play. With some more maps to drive around and more variety in the music this could have had a much longer lifespan. It's your choice but it may be a better rental then a full $90 purchase.