Crazy Taxi: Fare Wars
Resident Crazy Taxi fanatic Phil Jones gives us a first look at the newly-announced PSP pseudo-sequel...
So, another game gets ported to the PSP. Normally not an occasion for rejoicing. There's something a little different this time though, this game is a modern arcade legend! Crazy Taxi is coming to the PSP in the form of Crazy Taxi : Fare Wars. It's not often the announcement of a PSP title has me doing a little dance but this made me dance on my roof! I'm sure many of us were fans of the good ol' Dreamcast back in the day, with Crazy Taxi being one of its main attractions. For the uninitiated, the premise is simple enough- you drive a taxi, in as crazy a manner as is possible. Getting your fares to their destinations as quick as you can, knocking everyone else on the road out of your way and taking mental shortcuts over buildings, through malls and through parks. It's driving as it should be in real life (but without the criminal record and time behind bars).
What joy is Sega going to be stuffing into our pants with this then? Well, it's not just a straight port of the first, San Francisco styled Taxi game, but will also include the New York inspired stage from the 2nd Taxi game too, Bonus! The challenge stages, Crazy Box and Crazy Pyramid are also intact (challenges like drift turn on ludicrously thin roads with sheer drops either side).
The big draw is the brand-new multiplayer modes, however. This could be a sweet addition as long as they get it right. There's talk of players being able to steal fares from each other while racing to destinations. There's also going to be the ability to record small replays of your fancy driving, which you'll no doubt be able to share with your friends in a "look at exactly how crazy my driving is" way. Sega hasn't confirmed all of the new features but personally what I would like to see the most in this game would be some kind of online ranking, say an international singleplayer hi-score table as well as multiplayer rankings of some kind.
One of the most adrenaline pumping aspects of the Taxi games was no doubt its use of licensed music from the likes of The Offspring and Bad Religion. Arguably not my kind of music but music that I found fitted the style of the game incredibly well. So I'm glad to hear that they're going to be bringing a selection of new tracks to the game, along with a whole new batch of character voices and phrases, Yoooouuuu LOUSY driver!
No exact release date has been set as of yet, the game should be with us by summer though. Graphics wise it looks like a decent enough translation from the Dreamcast original, with only slight drops in detail on the environment. It's being handled Sniper Studios and not internally at Sega, so with any luck, they'll do the game proud and we'll be taxi-ing into the night with smiles on our faces.