Originally in arcades and Dreamcast, Crazy Taxi was ported to the Playstation 2 in 2001, which features all the original game play, but unfortunately no extras.
There are several game modes: Arcade, Original and Crazy Box. Arcade and Original are identical in terms of game play, but feature different maps and courses. You can select arcade rules or just play for three, five or ten minutes. Crazy Box Mode features a series of challenges and minigames you can beat to try and get the top record.
To start off, you select one of four characters, which as far as I'm aware is only different in terms of aesthetics and the things they say (more on that later) and their driving plate. The skills are all down to how you play! The aim of the game is to pick up as many passengers and deliver them to their destination, whilst earning the highest fare. You have a "per customer" time limit as well as an overall time limit which you must race to get the most money.
The map in arcade is probably the easier one to play out of the two, but the original map definitely has more thrills. Both maps are pretty huge and it will take time to explore and learn the hidden crooks and shortcuts. Vaguely resembling San Francisco, there are tram lines and steep hills for you to avoid. Conveniently placed ramps allow you to obtain combos to earn a higher fare. My favourite though, has to be driving through the train tunnels, which is exciting, mysterious and also exciting (given you don't crash into a train)!
I am quite bad at this game and don't manage more than five or six when playing the arcade mode- I keep crashing! The option to just cruise for five or ten minutes is definitely my favourite as it lets me have enough time to get a good drive round the city without the stress of making sure I deliver the customer to the destination so I have more time.
The controls are relatively easy after a few tries, but may initially be a bit confusing. There are two preset controls settings, but you cannot customise them entirely. Other options include difficulty, traffic difficulty and sound options.
Graphically the game is pretty stunning, with bright colours, fast moving traffic and smashable objects. The game doesn't lag and buildings all look realistic. There is a lack of fine detail but you wouldn't notice given the crazy driving! The thing I'd like to have seen was a night map or one with different weather conditions which would be really cool and a change to both the day time maps.
The soundtrack features mainly rock tracks that are upbeat. It does fit in to the maps and the scenes you see, but can be a bit noisy and annoying after a while. The characters and passengers also have things to say, but these are slightly repetitive and limiting.
Overall, the game is definitely a game you play when you have perhaps fifteen or twenty minutes to spare- a pick up and play game that will give you a quick thrill and burst of adrenaline. It isn't a game you can spend hours and hours on, though if you're keen on setting records, this could be. In this way, this isn't a game you can get tired of easily as each game is different. The only thing lacking is a two player option.