Crazy Taxi 2 (Dreamcast) review
"Ya know, I used to hate Crazy Taxi 2, thinking it didn't live up to the first game's standards. So with that mindset, I was ready to bash the game in this review; but then, I started playing it again. And to my surprise, it's not as bad as I'd originally thought. Hell, it's about as equal to its predecessor, give or take a few differences. That's a good thing and, unfortunately, a bad thing. "
Ya know, I used to hate Crazy Taxi 2, thinking it didn't live up to the first game's standards. So with that mindset, I was ready to bash the game in this review; but then, I started playing it again. And to my surprise, it's not as bad as I'd originally thought. Hell, it's about as equal to its predecessor, give or take a few differences. That's a good thing and, unfortunately, a bad thing.
If you've played the original to death or just a first-timer, you'll immediately get into its sequel. Not much has changed and the goal remains the same: pick up a customer (as well as multiple ones this time around) and drive them to their destination on time in two, all new cities, Around and Small Apple. Of course, you'll have to contend with the traffic and find the shortest routes, as well as pull off some wild maneuvers like driving close to other cars or drifting to pick up some extra cash. All the while, you're listening to an energetic, nonstop soundtrack by the Offspring and Methods of Mayhem. The rocking, and sometimes cheesy music clashes quite well with the chaos happening on screen.
The one big addition to CT2 that separates it from the first is the inclusion of the Crazy Jump. While it's a neat little move, it just feels like a gimmick. There are rarely moments that you'll need the move, the only times you'll use it the most is when you jump on small buildings that are sparsely scattered about. And using it while hopping over traffic is more of a hit or miss, because chances are your taxi will end up crashing on top of the vehicle you tried to jump over. The most you'll ever get out of the technique is when you play the Crazy Pyramid mini-games, which is mostly structured around using the jumping feature (hit a giant golf ball, hop over hurdles, jump from one giant building to another, etc.).
So, yeah, what's the good and bad things that make CT2 look like a mirrored image of the original? One good city and one bad city. Around Apple takes after the Original city from CT: fun and addicting. There are a variety of places and structures that makes locating buildings a breeze, like the Burger King that's placed right beside the large river bridge, and the fire station that's located right below a huge garden area that's loaded with branching paths. And if you've memorized everything, getting to each destination will never seem impossible to reach; the only one you'll end up blaming is yourself when you screw up.
The Small Apple, though, is like the Arcade city of the first game: they both suck. The main problem with the city is that EVERYTHING looks the same; almost everywhere you look, you'll see one tall building connected to another tall building connected to another tall building and so on, you'll have a hard time remembering where certain structures are because of this annoyance. The second problem is that the the giant arrow that guides you to your destination is completely messed up. It'll lead you on one hell of a wild goose chase, making you go around in circles before leading you to your stop. This wasn't a problem in Around Apple because you could easily memorize the entire place, but in Small Apple, your cabbie will have no choice but to be the arrow's bitch and obey its every command.
Despite that, you'll still have some fun with Crazy Taxi 2 in Around Apple, constantly pushing yourself to pick up as many customers as possible, raking up a whole lot of money, and finding new ways to beat the timer. But, I highly doubt just one good city will be enough to warrant a purchase of this game; I recommend getting it if you can find it really cheap in a bargain bin, though. It's just a shame that the game ended up having the same main problem as CT; if Small Apple was much better, then this could've been a great sequel.
Community review by pickhut (April 02, 2005)
Didn't originally plan on submitting AA: Pac-Man on Thanksgiving, but I couldn't pass up on the food theme.
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