Every once in a while a game grabs your attention for nostalgic reasons. I don’t think that the developers from Team6 would mind if I call Taxi Chaos some kind of spiritual successor from Sega’s Crazy Taxi. There are more than enough examples on Xbox that spiritual successors aren’t always what they should be. In no way does Taxi Chaos fill my desire for a new Crazy Taxi, in some ways it even offended my love for that classic game.
We played Taxi Chaos for 6 hours on Xbox Series X
What we liked!
- Collectible hunting in free-roam is fun: When you find well hidden special passengers they will unlock collectibles for you to find in the map. You’ll have to keep an extreme eye on all parts of the map to find all of them. From coffee, hairspray cans and much more! Most of my play time was spent on finding collectibles as the real gameplay reason to play Taxi Chaos got a bit boring after an hour.
- Boilerplate racing fun for a short time: There isn’t really anything bad to say about the racing gameplay. It is a very basic experience that lacks ideas to make it really fresh and fun for long periods. There is a boost-option when you stand still but that’s it. There is no grinding, powerups, or other ways to get a bit more excitement. I won’t deny that I had some fun with the game, but only when I played it in short 10 minute sessions. I’m still a bit confused about how the color-system works that float above passengers, the game simply doesn’t explain it. So getting a good score in Arcade mode is mostly based on pure luck.
- Pro-mode: In pro mode, you don’t have navigation at your disposal. I really adore this game mode IDEA but the execution is questionable. The game simply doesn’t have enough visual landmarks to really remember where everything is. Because yeah, you will need to remember locations so you can deliver passengers on time. In theory, the player should memorize the entire map (in Free-Roam for example) but I wonder who will have the patience for that as the gameplay core for Taxi Chaos simply isn’t fun enough.
What we disliked
- Severe lack of content: A few Taxi-cars with different stats, collectibles, one male and female driver, and three game modes that are all played in the same dull map. No, Taxi Chaos isn’t bursting with content, that’s clear. You might wonder what did I need more? A second, completely different game map would have been more than welcome, this game has a price tag of €30 so a bit more content wouldn’t have been generous, if you ask me it is mandatory.
- An uninteresting small map: It is a bit baffling but the small drivable world in Taxi Choas misses personality and more importantly fun sections to drive on. The rooftop jumping that you can do is a neat aspect but there is a lot of reason to really use it, it slows down the car and you’ll be faster on the road anyway. Not a lot of resources are spent in making the game world more fun, there are no pickups for boosting your car or something. As explained in the ‘what we liked’ section I did appreciate the hidden collectibles from special passengers but despite a few original buildings and squares it is a very dull map. I missed more crazy jumps, original shortcuts, and things that made the map more uniquely interesting.
- Terrible dialogue: Nearly everything regarding dialogue is awful in Taxi Chaos, you hear the same things constantly. From aliens in town, people wearing Hawaiian shirts, or people planning their retirement. Passengers always say the same things over and over again, at one point my passenger was simply on repeat that I was driving too fast for him, saying the same sentence 6 times in 10 seconds. With my very first taxi-driver mission I was a bit disappointed that the conversation got interrupted, little did I know that I would be hearing it a million times later. Also, where did they find these voice-actors? I wouldn’t be surprised that they randomly picked up some people in a shopping street in the developer’s area, Assen. Sorry to be so harsh but the Taxi call-outs or some of the special passenger conversations are genuinely some of the worst voice-acting I have heard in a videogame. Unfortunately, this is an important part of the charming taxi-driver experience.
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