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Crazy Taxi: Fare Wars Review

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Cabbie classic takes to the streets again

★★★★

In these days of 100+ hour adventures, endless customisation and games that demand superhuman dexterity, it’s refreshing to step back in time and play something that offers instant satisfaction and keeps you hooked into the early hours for just one more go.

And in shifting Sega’s Dreamcast classics to a handheld machine where you can dip into the arcade thrills anytime you choose, Fare Wars is one of the best PSP games money can buy.

The PSP release features both Crazy Taxi and Crazy Taxi 2, each of which is virtually identical to the Dreamcast editions and includes both the arcade and console maps from the original game. But to spice things up, players can now choose to use their own custom soundtrack using music recorded on their PSP memory stick, and there are even a handful of multiplayer competitive and co-operative modes to help bring a new dimension to the cross-town scrambles.

The PSP button layout also lends itself perfectly to the gear-shifting action, making this the most comfortable version to play since the GameCube edition back in 2002.

Hardened CT fans will doubtless grumble that the hard rockin’ soundtrack included on the disc isn’t as good as the original tracks by The Offspring and Bad Religion, that the in-game announcer lacks the punch of the original voiceover artist, and that you’ll often see buildings pop up out of nowhere as you burn around the colourful levels. But if you haven’t played the game before or are willing to forgive its minor flaws, waste no time in pushing that pedal to the metal and go make some craaaaazy money.

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