As a creative studio we’re fairly new to making games, having only just recently release our first title, an ambitious location-based augmented reality game titled Clandestine: Anomaly. But, as new as we are, we never settle for pushing out copy-cat games, and don’t even like copying ourselves, which is why the Last Taxi is entirely different than our first game.

Here’s a trailer for Clandestine if you’re interested:

However, being new to game development and likely to stay on the riskier side of our creative endeavours, we’re never certain how well our games will be received. That’s why when we pushed the first glimpse of the Last Taxi out to the world via Greenlight we waited with baited breath for feedback from the community.

While Greenlight is no measure of future success, based on the feedback we’ve received so far, the response has been more than we could have asked for. As we continue to develop The Last Taxi we’ll try our best to share our work with you in hopes your feedback will improve our progress.

The first stage in getting your feedback is showing you more about what systems and mechanics make up the gameplay of The Last Taxi. So without further delay, let’s dive in.

Overarching Gameplay Vibe 

The Last Taxi is not, strictly speaking a driving game. There are plenty of those out there, some of which you can even drive a cab in, such as the cab mini-game in GTA. Instead, this game is about about the life of the last taxi driver himself. The last taxi driver, ever.

Inspired by games like “Oregon Trail”, “Cross Country Canada”, “Papers, Please” and “Cart Life”, this game is less a driving sim, and more a Life of a Taxi Driver Simulator.

The most important element of the game is financial and personal survival. Starting the game indebted due to the purchase of the cab itself, you’ll fight long hours, poor pay, a demanding family life and unruly customers in order to resist obsolesce.

End of Day Costs

It’s the type of game where death comes by a 1,000 cuts. You can lose by going bankrupt, you can lose by failing your family, and winning isn’t so much winning, as it is surviving.

Pay being what it is, survival is heavily dependent on how you deal with your family (a future post) and how you deal with passenger conversations to improve tips (discussed a bit in this post).

Distracted Driving, Fatigue and System Failures

However, your job is more than sweet talking your way to success. Driving your beat-up old “ground vehicle,” you’ll have to try and pay attention to passenger conversations while managing dozens of little elements that impact your driving, your concentration, or how well you’re tipped. If you can’t keep on top of all these systems you’ll become overwhelmed, ruining your time and wasting valuable energy.

Let’s dive into some of these systems:

Overworked

Trying to compete with an automated work force can drive any human to physical exhaustion. In The Last Taxi, the days are long and hard. As the week progresses you’ll get increasingly tired, causing you to either spent your hard earned cash on “12-hour uppers” or coffee. Though coffee is the cheaper option, how often and how long you drink will impact its effectiveness.

Resist Sleep!

Everything has trades off, you can try to pace the coffee out and fight bouts of screen-covering-fatigue, you could pay the costs of taking “12-hour uppers” or you can try to work less and risk falling deeper into debt.

It’s your choice, but not matter what you choose, you’ll have to stay awake out there!

Roadway Obstacles

In the Last Taxi not only has the entire trash collection industry moved to automation, the proliferation of flying cars has may “ground roads” nearly obsolete. As such, automated trash collectors don’t pay much mind to how their positioned on the rarely used roadways.

Garbage Robot Mechanic

You may have to honk a few times to get them to clear-off. Failure to do show could cost you if you’re late dropping off your passenger, there are deductions for slow service.

Damn The Analogue Radio

What is this, 1995? In the Last Taxi nothing quite works as expected, doomed to this past-its-prime vehicle, it seems everything breaks down at one point or another.

RadioTuningMechanic

One of the instruments that break down is your old-school analogue radio (the green dial on the center-right). Acting as the source of all in-game music, your radio also impacts how much passengers enjoy the ride. Having the radio properly tuned will boost your tips.

When the radio slips out of tune, be sure to turn it back to a proper frequency as soon as possible it improve your tips.

GPS Malfunctions

Like the radio, your GPS is an antiquated relic of the past. When it works it gets the job done, helping you navigate the city, find high speed freeways, avoid pothole ridden roads, and can even outline the faster routes (with an upgrade).

However your GPS is a fickle, finicky machine that often needs a few solid smacks to bring it back online!

Damn GPS

It still is possible to get where you need to go with a broken GPS, but it will be harder find the best routes, and may cost you valuable time if you miss a turn.

More to Come

This update only showcased a few of the systems that can make being a human taxi driver in the Neon City particularly challenging. We’ll dive into more of these systems in Part 2. Including controlling climate with a broken AC, cleaning the grease dropped from flying cars off the window, and more!

Things can get really out of hand when you’re trying to follow a passenger conversation while several of these systems go off at once, so glue your eyes on the GPS, stay alert, keep the radio tuned and watch out for those automated trash collectors!

Until next time, Resist Obsolesce!