Crazy Taxi Review

This isn't a perfect re-creation of the classic arcade racer, but it's a fair game in its own right.

As a classic arcade game and one of the first games on Sega's dearly departed Dreamcast console, Crazy Taxi was a thrilling ride in 3D. You could practically feel every bump in the road and near-miss in traffic. This 2D handheld version is very different, but even though it's got a mess of a control scheme, you can still squeeze some fun out of it.

Like in the original Crazy Taxi, you must pick up passengers and deliver them to where they want to go.
Like in the original Crazy Taxi, you must pick up passengers and deliver them to where they want to go.

This version of Crazy Taxi doesn't resemble the screenshots on the Blackberry App World store at all. Instead, it looks like a cartoon version of the original Grand Theft Auto, with an above-ground view of city streets often blocked by overhanging buildings. Some parts of the environments can be destroyed by plowing your car through them, like fruit stands, fire hydrants, and other cars, while others will make you come to a dead stop. It doesn't feel right at first, but you may eventually come to appreciate the difficult challenge that the levels provide.

You control Axel, BD Joe, or Gus in similar-looking taxis as they try to pick up fares before time runs out. Your passengers are dressed in suitably "crazy" costumes, including get-ups such as sports mascots, chorus-line dancers, and giant hot dogs, and they all want to arrive at their destinations within a certain time limit, usually a minute or less. And just like in the original game, your passengers bail on the fare if you're not quick enough.

Getting from point A to point B is more difficult than it seems. The game lets you accelerate by pressing the top of your screen, brake by pressing the bottom, and steer by pressing the sides. In addition, double-tapping the screen will boost your gas or brakes, and tapping the center will make your cab perform a hop. The controls are all over the place, and you'll often find yourself blocking your view with your hands while you try to figure out which way your taxi is going to veer.

Expect to pick up fares dressed in crazy costumes.
Expect to pick up fares dressed in crazy costumes.

Besides the main mode, where you gain more time for successful fares, you can play a two-, four-, or six-minute timed game for a quick round. This version of Crazy Taxi definitely has its issues--the price is relatively high and the control scheme isn't ideal. Still, the game can be fairly enjoyable on its own merits, and it's pretty satisfying to narrowly succeed in delivering a fare right at the time limit.

This review was provided by GameSpot mobile content partner

The Good

  • Challenging
  • Trying to beat your high score can be fun
  • Quirky sense of humor.

The Bad

  • Poor controls
  • Unimpressive visuals
  • Lack of customization.

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