Probably one of Sega’s most widely-enjoyed arcade games of its time, and it’s not hard to see why – Crazy Taxi is pure cool, from its wild characters to its sunny take on San Francisco, it drips with style. The core gameplay mechanic is as accessible as they come, as you ferry passengers between landmarks, giving them as many thrills on the way as possible.
Crazy Taxi’s impact diminished somewhat with each sequel, but that’s likely because the original is as close to playability perfection as can be. The sheer joy of leaping over those first three hills is on a par with any arcade moment you could mention, and the sheer scale of the map gives you endless choice with routes and customers in search of that elusive Crazy ranking.
The second game in the series adds a Crazy Jump that, while fun, maybe makes the game a little easy. Having said that, the Mini Golf-based Crazy Box game is absolutely stupendous – you speed up to a giant golf ball, fling your cab into the air and try to send the ball as far as possible. Like all the best Crazy Box games, it’s simple, built around a few skills and is unbelievably addictive.
The home versions have added various minigames, and the PSP’s Fare Wars even adds two-player gameplay, but for sheer fun you can’t beat those solo three minutes in San Francisco.