Welcome to another edition of Flashback Friday and today we’re going back quite a few years all the way to 2003, with The Simpsons: Hit & Run. It was one of the main games of my childhood, being like a Simpsons Grand Theft Auto, with plenty of references to the show and lots of comic hilarity in what should be a mildly serious game.
The game was released on the 16th September 2003 on the PlayStation 2, Xbox, Nintendo GameCube and PC. It received good reviews from players and critics and rightly so, with an 8.1/10 Rating from IGN.com. Sadly, a sequel was never released by the developers Radical Entertainment and Vivendi Universal Games, but the replay value of the game means that it was never too much of a big deal that there was no sequel.
The game puts you in the Shoes of Homer, Bart, Lisa, Marge and Apu, on each of the 5 different worlds with different themes, cars and characters in each. There are at least 60 missions, but despite it being a Simpsons game, don’t’ be fooled, the game can be a difficult one at times, and while the missions are somewhat repetitive, the free-roaming aspect of the game makes it a lot of fun to play over and over. The game, like I said, is very much like Grand Theft Auto in the Simpsons universe, and it sounds great on paper, and even better on an actual game. Due to the comedic additions into the game like references to certain episodes, the cartoon style of the game, and the entertainment of running civilians over, the game is a lot of fun, while, if the game looked and played realistically, the hilarity of the characters, quotes and settings would disappear.
If anyone has enjoyed the game as much as I have, then they cannot deny that running over and NPC, hearing the comic squishing sound and hearing them say “I am so sick of this happening” like it was just an annoyance is one of the funniest things in a video game ever. There is just too much do in The Simpsons: Hit & Run, with secret cars, side missions, races, the main story and loads of interesting locations, you never really get bored.
I definitely recommend The Simpsons: Hit & Run to anyone who likes free-roaming games, racing games or the Simpsons in general, a timeless classic and one that is always worth a play.