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Crazy Taxi

aka: Crazy Taxi Classic
Moby ID: 3575

Description official descriptions

Crazy Taxi is an arcade-like racer where the player takes the role of a taxi driver who weaves his way through crowded streets, across sidewalks, and even underwater, in a wild and frantic race to deliver passengers on time. The courses are largely set inside cities crowded with general traffic and pedestrians (which can't be run over, they dive away). The main goal is to bring as many customers as possible to their destination in time. Available customers are marked through circles and the color represents the distance and the fare they offer. Green means long rides with plenty of money, and red ones are very short.

In the main Arcade mode, there is a timer that quickly runs down. It can be replenished by picking up customers. While driving reckless maneuvers are encouraged. Players can disregard all traffic rules and customers give extra tips for speedy and dangerous driving, but these can only be cashed when the customer arrives at his destination in time. By the same token, the reward at the end of a ride is based on the amount of time left, as each customer also has a personal timer. The city is filled with slopes and jumps, and the game uses a very loose driving model. No damage can be done to the car, so driving as fast as possible is encouraged. While driving players can toy with the gears to perform two special tricks: a crazy drift and a crazy boost to speed up more quickly.

Next to the Arcade mode, there is an Original mode and Crazy Box where specific goals need to be met on closed-down courses. In the regular modes, it is possible to disregard the usual timer and play for a fixed amount of minutes. At the end of the race, the player is rewarded with a license, either D, C, B, or A, with S for outstanding performance. Next to the interactive courses from the arcade version, there is a new course for home consoles. There are four cabs and drivers to choose from. The cars have different statistics and the drivers' different attitudes while racing. The game has a soundtrack featuring The Offspring and Bad Religion (not for the Xbox 360 version).

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Credits (Arcade version)

48 People (35 developers, 13 thanks) · View all

Chief Graphic Designer
Graphic Designers
Character Designer
Chief Programmer
Programmers
Technical Support
Mechanical Supervisor
Mechanic Engineers
Electric Engineer
Cabinet Designer
Sound Supervisor
Music - Hear It, Ten In 2010, Them and Us, Inner Logic
  • Bad Religion
[ full credits ]

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 79% (based on 93 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.7 out of 5 (based on 225 ratings with 10 reviews)

Laggy Taxi

The Good
It's Crazy Taxi on my PC. And Gina is hot! It's good to see Sega move on after the Dreamcast. The graphics are really good, and so is the sound and music. This game installs pretty easy, too.

The Bad
Laggy and jittery. I'm playing on an eMachines W3052 with a GeForce 6800 with 128 MB vRAM, lots of hard drive space, Windows XP SP2, and the system's RAM is 512 MB, plenty for Windows XP. Nevertheless, this game, in the various modes, is laggy and jittery. The play control is very stiff and is slow. The whole game seems slow. I can't figure out how to access the bike mode, and the ending is cheapened, so the nice cinemas found on the console versions during the ending credits are gone. Top that off, all of the music has been changed. ALL OF IT! No Offspring or any other hits from their album Americana! That sucks!

The Bottom Line
Okay, I'm not sure where MobyGames.com got the info that VU Games published this version, because my disc has Activision plastered all over it, the jewel case's labels, the cardboard box, so forth and so on. In fact, Activsion's logo is featured right after Sega's after the game starts. Anyways, this game still sells for $10 new everywhere. Pick it up if you want a stuttery version of it.

Windows · by Fake Spam (85) · 2007

Funny at first, then just annoying.

The Good
Crazy Taxi is one of those simple action games that takes a basic, easy to learn premise and fleshes it out into a funny and addictive (for a while anyway) game by keeping it all simple.

I guess you could call the game a driving game at heart, an EXTREMELY arcade driving game, where the objective is to outlast a timer by picking up customers and taking them across the city towards their destination for money and extra seconds. If you've played the GTA3 Taxi missions then you know what I'm talking about, you approach a character with a $ sign on his head, stop in a clearly marked "pick-up radius" and head on to whatever destination he/she wants to, following an arrow-compass. That's it. Of course, what makes Crazi Taxi Crazi Taxi is that the seemingly simple gameplay premise is jacked-up to much faster and frenetic levels, with heavier traffic, a much tighter time limit, faster vehicles (and a closer camera view that makes the sense of speed even greater) and a much wilder terrain with jump-friendly areas practically on every street and with even a set of "special moves" that make the already cartoonish physics a complete joke by basically adding the possibility to perform impossibly tight turns and "dashing" forward with your car (yeah, you read that right). The "course" for the game is a gigantic virtual city with it's collection of shortcuts and varied landmarks that include winding San Francisco-like hills, beaches, residential areas, comercial plazas, etc. and to be honest it's a pretty amazing sight. A sunny coastal city fully rendered and fully populated with all sorts of vehicles and persons.

The PC version also comes with a set of extras ported over from the DC version, and those include an extra city for when you get bored with the original one and which is more of a metropolis-like city than the original touristy one, a selection of arcade or time-locked modes (where you can't earn extra seconds and basically play to see how much money you can get in X minutes), and a series of challenges that are single-area scenarios that basically revolve around you mastering the varied special moves and making all sort of jumps, dashes, etc.

The graphics mantain the same texture detail and effects (or lack of, really) as in the original, but the PC version allows you to adjust the resolution to stratospheric levels and provides a good, albeit dated, visual quality.

The Bad
Regardless of the added areas and challenges, the longevity of the game is basically nule. Sure, in the arcades it seemed as if the game always left you wanting more, but once you have it with you on a permanent basis the game just dies out on you, and does so because of two major reasons:

First, the gameplay is really nothing deep. After all, It's just a little, dumb, arcade racer, and I take the "racer" with many reservations. Quite frankly this game has the most flat-out ridiculous physics model I've ever seen on a game like this. Sure arcade racers aren't known for their realism and that's ok since you don't want to play a sim, however this time it's just incredible! You don't drive car, you control a...."thing" that appears to slide over the ground following your controller input and ignoring anything that gets in it's way and such nuances as the speed and direction that it was moving on. You can take 90-degree curves as if on rails, ram head on against oncoming trucks and send THEM flying, accelerate from 0 to 100 in a nanosecond, even drive underwater and wave goodbye to the passing whales!! (No, I'm not making that up), suffice to say that even Twisted Metal has a more realistic driving model. And while you may think that makes the game what it is and that I'm a fool for even bringing it up, you should know that's one of the main reasons the game becomes so boring after a while... after all you just jam your finger on the accelerate button and just go to wherever the arrow points at, there is no difference in any of the available taxis (except for a little shift in mass that comes in handy when crashing against other vehicles) and there's no challenge at all to the game. Plus there are the usual arcade glitches that leave you scratching your head and cursing the arcade driving model, such as the nasty collision detection that somehow tends to "lock" your car to a wall if you crash into it at an angle (instead of bumping against it or just bouncing off it) forcing you to go in reverse and then leaving the "sticky" walls, or the unpredictable power-slides (when you want to slide, the car will turn as if on rails, and viceversa), etc. etc...

The other reason that will kill the game in no-time for most people with average sensibilities is that it's just the most annoying game on the face of the earth! Apparently SEGA took the "Crazy" moniker to heart and to speed the game up to even more frenetic levels gave each character and the announcer an infuriating bubbly "tee-hee" voice and stupid catchy phrases (all with "Crazy" somewhere) plus they signed 5 or so songs from The Offspring and some similar bands... That repeat over and over and over again... Result? It's teeny-bopper hell for anyone trying to play this game for more than 10 minutes, with an average session containing such wonderful moments as:

"-He-HEEEYY!! Hop on in!! - Hi! Take me to the Original Levi's Store!! (ka-chiiiiiing...)Tee-heee...!! - Let's Roll....like CRAZY!!!" ... Get Craaaaazy! Let's make some Craaaaazy Money!!!, WooooooHOOOO!! That was Craaaaaazy!!! Dude, That's the Craaaaaziest!! You are Craaaazy man!! CRAZY CRAZY CRAZY!!! AAARGH!!

And on top of all that insanity you have to listen to the popcorn teeny neo-punk crap of the Offspring!!! GOOD GOD!! This game makEs me wAnt to mURdER pEoplE!! JUST KILL EVERYBODY IN LITTLE PIECES WITH A MACHETE AND RIP OUT THEIR ORGANS WITH A CHAINSAW AAANDDDD.......uh.... well, er anyway, the game is just infuriating... it's the gaming equivalent of an annoying hyperactive 5-year old kid high on caffeine.

(And to clarify things, for me punk rock is spelled with a "Ramones" and a "Sex Pistols" or maybe a "NOFX" or a "Green Day" if you want to be more in tune with the times... NOT by ripping off the god damn Beatles!)

The Bottom Line
Simple concept, Good execution. That's it! Crazy Taxi is a nice diversion, but your average goldfish will outlive it's longevity. One of those games that once past the novelty fun just doesn't offer any meat to really chew on, and thus dies out in a matter of hours.

And please, Do NOT play this game if you have a Psychotic disorder of any kind! Consult with your therapist before installing!

Windows · by Zovni (10502) · 2003

YEAH YEAH YEAH YEEEEEAH YEAAAAHHHH !

The Good
Those looking for deep, rich fun need not look here ! It's pure arcade, out of control action ! For the uninitiated, Crazy Taxi is a game where you pick up passengers and take them to their destinations on time to get paid "CRAZY MONEY !" Now that you're initiated, you are now ready to make CRAZY MONEY !

Gameplay-

Picking up random strangers and taking them places might sound like a bad idea, but it's actually fun ! You know, because here there's no muggers or hookers wanting rides here. I think it's time to get to the gameplay mechanics before my mind wanders somewhere else. I'm not sure the cabbies you play would mind that much anyway. You get four to choose from. Axel, a punker with a bad attitude and a awesome head of green hair. Gena, the hottie of the bunch, who gerunckle isperabby kththththhh blabablab, uh what was I saying ? oh yeah, cabbies. The ultra hip, hip hop dude B.D. Joe, and the middle age Vegas type of guy Gus. You have quite a colorful cast to choose from, but more cabbies would have been nice. I personally like Axel the most.

Anyway, passengers are ranked by how much they'll pay you, and how far you have to take them. Red and orange for quick "CRAZY MONEY !" and short distances, yellow and green for long distances and lots of "CRAZY MONEY !". To pick up a passenger just stop in they're highlighted ring and they'll jump in your cab. To get your "CRAZY MONEY !" you'll need to get them there in the time limit above their head. If it runs out they jump out of your cab even at full speed ! Why did they jump out ? Maybe you hit too many cars along the way. Yes, you can hit cars in this game and not come to a screeching halt ! You can even knock over a bus ! It'll slow you down, but it's still cool ! What's even more, cool is the ability to drive ON THE SIDEWALK, UNDERWATER, AND JUMP OVER CARS IN TRAFFIC ! You'll need a ramp for that last one but still ! You can even scatter pedestrians, but not run them over. (Hey, this isn't GTA !) All of this is determined by how far you get within the main time limit. You can choose from three to ten minutes to pick up as many passengers and "CRAZY MONEY !" as you can. Worried about getting lost ? No worries, as a huge arrow points the direction you need to go. Once the time limit runs out, you're graded on your performance. I usually rank a B.

"But Daniel ? I've played all the different mission times and the afternoon isn't over yet ? WHAT WILL I DO !?" Go out and play in the sun ! Yeah I know, it's cold outside (Or hot depending on what time of year you read this review.), but it might be fun ! Just remember to bring a Game Boy. Anyway, after you finish the main modes, there are a slew of mini games to play. The only ones different from the normal part of the game are the "CRAZY JUMP !" and "CRAZY BOWLING !". All are fairly fun, but only marginally. Over all for the gameplay, CRAZY fun !

Sound-

YEAH YEAH YEAH YEEEEEAH YEAAAAHHHH ! Whoops ! Sorry, it's a very catchy song. Well since it's stuck in my head, I'll reveal that the soundtrack for this game is provided by the Offspring and Bad Religion ! I've never heard of the latter, but the Offspring deliver the best track of the whole game. It goes, YEAH YEAH YEAH YEEEEEAH YEAAAAHHHH ! OK I promise not to do that anymore. Fortunately the rest of the game measures up. Loud crashes, big bangs and most of the passengers have something to say ! I love it when Axel gets mad and says "Yeah yeah I got it !" It's also fun to hear the pedestrians scream when you're coming. Then there's the narrator, but I'll get to him later. So to wrap it up for sound, CRAZY good !

Graphics-

Stunning for their time, they've aged better than most. The people all look angular, but the texture mapping has managed to look good because of it's simplicity. Nice vibrant colors are much nicer to look at than ugly complicated ones. That's not to say they're without detail, (That would be CRAZY !). All the houses, buildings, cars, people and other objects are nicely rendered with a very nice style. The beaches and the hills look the best. Given that this was a Dreamcast port, it's held up even better to the test of time. Most Dreamcast to PS2 ports look rough now looking back on them. (Ecco comes to mind.) It's really hard to get more descriptive than that with a arcade game, but I'm trying ! Overall for graphics, CRAZY FRESH ! I know I know, I'll stop. Maybe.

Control-

Simple. Simple simple simple. And responsive ! You have the gas, brake, horn and a button to toggle reverse and drive. Nuff said.

The Bad
Gameplay-

The game starts to wear "CRAZY !" thin after a while. Sure it's arcade action at it's best, but that's the problem. It's an arcade game. It was meant for ten minutes of play. Most likely the time you run out of quarters. This was not meant for days on end of play. it's fun for that afternoon of fun, but you'll likely feel more than a little bored after a while. Don't get any delusions that this is Gran Turismo. Also, I found it hard to get around town. It was too easy to get stuck on sidewalks, and when knocking over a big bus, it was hard to get out it's way on time. Oh did I mention all the name brand stores in the game ? ("yo ! Take me to Pizza Hut !") It's a sad reminder of what Sega was willing to do keep themselves afloat at the time. Overall, it's fun, but ultimately a shallow ride.

Sound-

There are only two things that stink in the sound department. One. The announcer. He's so out of place ! He sounds like somebody from a truck stop ! And his adding "CRAZY !" to everything gets old the THIRD time you hear it. Second. Sure you have the Offspring and Bad Religion as the soundtrack. That sounds like a dream, but it's painfully apparent how much money Sega was losing at the time (Apart from the aforementioned name brand name stores.) because they only licensed FOUR songs. Even YEAH YEAH YEAH YEEEEEAH YEAAAAHHHH ! gets mind numbing after a while. Yeah yeah I know I promised. Sue me. And the game kept skipping some songs after 30 seconds ! That might be just my disk, but it's very annoying.

Graphics-

Fortunately the graphics only suffer from common problems of their day. Some of the pop-up became pretty bad near the ocean. A whole mountain popped up twenty feet in front of me ! At one point the whole road clipped out in front of me ! That only happened once, but it's troubling. And the texture resolution is really starting to show it's age.

The Bottom Line
Great fun for a weekend, but not much of classic. I still recommend picking it up anyway since it's so cheap, but don't get your hopes up too high.

PlayStation 2 · by GAMEBOY COLOR! (1989) · 2009

[ View all 10 player reviews ]

Trivia

Lawsuit

The December 2003 lawsuit filed by Sega against Fox Entertainment claims that The Simpsons: Road Rage infringes on a patent owned by Sega of America. Specifically, Sega claims that The Simpsons: Road Rage gameplay is too close to that of Crazy Taxi. It was eventually settled in private.

The abstract for the patent reads as follows:

A driving game, wherein players having various driving skills--from beginners to those advanced--may enjoy both aspects of amusement and simulation in consistency. The game device of the present invention has an element for providing to a player a plurality of different movement modes upon moving the vehicle along a traveling line. Upon selection of a desired movement mode, a vehicle-driving game relating to the driving mode selected by the player is executed. Included in this plurality of driving modes are an assist mode in which auto-brake control is performed and a training mode in which various indications, such as the timing of the braking point, are given.

The full patent is available here.

Product placement

Product placement at its best: Kentucky Fried Chicken, Tower Records and Levi Jeans. Each one is present as a location in Crazy Taxi.

Information also contributed by Terrence Bosky

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Brolin Empey.

GameCube, PlayStation 2 added by Kartanym. OnLive added by firefang9212. Xbox 360, Android, PlayStation Now added by Sciere. iPad, iPhone added by Kabushi. Arcade added by The cranky hermit. PlayStation 3 added by Crawly. Xbox One added by MAT. Windows added by Rantanplan.

Additional contributors: Zovni, Guy Chapman, Sciere, DreinIX, Patrick Bregger, GTramp, Victor Vance.

Game added April 2nd, 2001. Last modified August 14th, 2023.