Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2
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It’s a funny coincidence that just the other day we were talking about 3D games from the late 90’s and early 2000’s making their revival on iOS, because Crazy Taxi just got released for iOS. Controlling a taxi driver in one of two cities inspired by San Francisco, it’s all about picking up fares and taking them to their destination as quickly as possible, ignoring traffic laws because those are stupid. There’s different types of fares to pick up, with the color above their head representing how far it will take to get to the destination, but also how much money can be earned. There’s an overall timer and a timer for each fare, and if the fare timer runs out, then no money is earned, and if the overall timer runs out, it’s game over.
Crazy Taxi is a perfect fit for mobile: the game sessions only last a few minutes, so they’re great for pick-up-and-play sessions, and the amped-up pace keeps things interesting. The gas/brake and forward/reverse gear controls have been combined, which makes it easier to pull off a lot of the more advanced maneuvers, which is almost a good thing. The touch controls actually work really well, they feel like using the d-pad on the Dreamcast version, and the tilt controls work for those who actually like to drive their cars by "steering" them. I feel like I did as well as I did in the original game, and that’s all I really want from a port like this.
Thankfully, the soundtrack is even the same as it was before, consisting of 3 songs each by The Offspring and Bad Religion. It would have been easy for Sega to cheap out and leave the drum riff from “Change The World” that’s used as the main menu music out, but they kept it in. Is it all a bit repetitive? Sure, but they form such an integral part of the game’s character that to not have them would just make the game feel like it has something truly missing. In fact, the only thing missing is the licensed drop-off points, so instead of taking customers to KFC, they’re going to Fried Chicken Shack. That’s literally it: everything else from the Dreamcast version is faithfully represented, including the Crazy Box challenges.
I’m absolutely in love with Crazy Taxi on iOS: it’s a fantastic port of a bona fide classic. Maybe I’m being clouded by nostalgia, and forgiving the little things that annoy me nowadays, like the wonky-at-times physics and driving, but I don’t care. It’s Crazy Taxi wherever I want to go, and faithfully represented. The game is still quite original, and worth checking out for anyone who loves this title or missed it on the first go-around.