The Simpsons: Hit & Run – An Unexpected Masterpiece

so I shared my thoughts on The Simpsons road rage I more or less roasted The Simpsons skateboarding and I scared the ever living crap out of myself playing the fan made Simpsons horror game eggs for Bart but now the time has come for me to address the best video game to ever use the esteemed Simpsons license buckle up neighbor me knows we’re talking about The Simpsons hit and run now let’s wind the clock back to February 2005 I just turned six years old and for my birthday I got my first ever console a PlayStation 2 slim maybe to this day I still laugh at you guys who had your fat ps2 s taking up half the square footage of your homes anyway with my playstation 2 I got two games one being The Simpsons hit and run and the other being scooby-doo mystery mayhem now back then I was quite the scaredy cat and yeah well evidently not much has changed so that alongside the fact that the simpsons was my favorite show on television meant scooby-doo got pushed to the wayside and I spent pretty much all of my time on the PlayStation playing hit and run now you’d think this would mean I must have finished the game in no time right I mean if it’s the only game I’m playing then of course but this is actually not the case at all and in fact for the first few months I had the game I hadn’t even managed to reach level 2 the reason being I didn’t have a memory card from my PlayStation so I could never save my progress this meant that every time I sat down to play this thing I would be starting from the very beginning I’m talking the opening cutscene and I’ll just try to see how far I could get before play time was up and I’d have to get off the console I mean I’ve played the first mission of this game so many times I could probably do it with my eyes closed eventually I just had to stop playing the game you know there are only so many times you can keep doing the same missions over and over again while losing all your progress each time I kind of felt like Sisyphus you know the dude who was cursed to forever push a boulder up a hill only to watch it roll back down again I mean I didn’t know who’s Sisyphus was back then but it’s a fitting metaphor it wasn’t until a few months later that I received the proprietary 8 megabyte PlayStation 2 memory card of my own and then the real fun could begin now one thing that immediately set this Simpsons game apart from its predecessors is that hit and run had an actual story in road rage you got the cutscene at the start to explain what was going on why everyone’s carpooling around Springfield but then you are pretty much left to her imagination as far as the plot was concerned and apart from the occasional quip for mr. burns to denote your progress through the game the only of the semblance of a narrative were these little descriptions you got for each of the 10 missions to give some context for what you’re doing in them in short not much of a story here in skateboarding they didn’t even attempt a story they just gave you a reading assignment on the back of the box now if the nature of this game I can’t really say I blame them of course having a story would have been nice but I mean that is Simpsons and they’re on skateboards like what more do you want you want a story written by Stephen King on here c’mon bruh The Simpsons hit and run on the other hand with its gameplay being far more varied and less arcade focused than the other two games provided a great opportunity for an actual story to be written to accompany it and while radical entertainment worked in collaboration with gracie films matt groening and the original cost of the simpsons just as they’re done with their previous game road rage most of the dialogue in this game was actually not written by writers of the show but by Chris Mitchell a game designer at radical and that surprised me because although the writing in this game is a lot goofier than you’d find in a typical symptoms episode of that era the end result is still a charming funny and pretty interesting story that I’d have no problem believing was put together by official Simpsons writers The Simpsons hit and run features a story that was wacky enough to allow for a lot of fun gameplay elements a story that portrayed the characters so authentically only true fans of the show could have written it this well and a story that I will be talking all about now the game opens with a cutscene showing a horde of wasps being beamed into Stringfield thing is they’re not only wasps they’re cameras – one of these wasp cameras enters the Simpsons family home where it is swiftly pimp slapped by Homer and then stomped on this is a scene that plays right before the game’s menu screen and when you start a new game you’re brought right back where you left off with Homer inspecting a couple of coins that were released from the wasp camera he just destroyed an ad then comes on of Krusty promoting a new and improved buzz Cola which Homer in classic fashion feels compelled to go out and buy level one takes place in the

suburbs of Springfield on a typical sunny day home and talks to Marge who tells him to go out and buy some ice cream which works great for him since he was already going to the kwik-e-mart to get the buzz Cola this is when the first mission starts and it’s pretty simple you drive to the kwik-e-mart speak to Appu he gives you the stuff you collect it then you hear Bart say this the next few missions are just Homer carrying our busy work getting Lisa’s science project to her before Principal Skinner gets their returning items he bought from Ned Flanders and for some reason left all over town blowing up Smith is his car with the plough king so he won’t be able to catch him late for work you know the usual errands after a busy day at work Homer returns home and watches a news report stating that Springfield citizens are infuriated by the appearance of the wasp surveillance cameras and a seemingly related no black surveillance vans have also started showing up in town which Rob’s home with a long way so he decides to follow one of them to see who’s responsible after seeing the van end its journey at mr. Burns’s mansion Homer figures he must be the one behind all this and so he rushes to tell Marge about it unfortunately for him Marge is far more interested in getting a violent video game off store shelves and so after helping her that he’s left a deal with mr. burns on his own this involves him racing Smithers who was apparently already able to get an exact replica of his car made either that or he just got one of those magic spanner things anyway you race him to Burns’s mansion and when you get there Homer tells mr. burns that he knows all about what he’s doing with the black vans and wasp cameras at which point mr. burns informs Homer that one the wasp cameras have nothing to do with him – the black vans are actually pizza delivery vehicles and three homie was fired enter level 2 you’re now playing his part and it said in downtown Springfield but really wants to get the new bone storm game but seeing as marge destroyed a bunch of the copies from before his search ends up unsuccessful that is until he finds out that Professor Frink has collected copies of the game and is using them to power his giant robot dinosaure truckasaurus Frank tells Bart he still needs a few more parts to get the robot fully operational and so Bart sets off to collect a radio a satellite dish and a blender bing-bang-boom kill a few Road uses solar cell phone signals or an interfere with the robot and you got yourself a truckasaurus in the next cutscene Bart goes to see the thing but it turns out a 20-ton four story tall fire-breathing robot dinosaur has the potential to be a little dangerous and so bart has to make a quick escape all the while still being watched by a wasp camera but Bart might have actually been better off had he just stayed there because once he escapes he’s abducted by aliens in a green mist enter level 3 you’re playing as Lisa the level takes place in the harbor area at sunset she’s trying to find her missing brother she asks comic book guy he doesn’t know where he is she asks Milhouse he doesn’t know where he is she asked Professor Frink he doesn’t know where he is she asks Grampa Simpson now he doesn’t even know where he is but he says he thinks Bart might be in a strange black sedan he saw nearby so of course the Lisa takes the most logical course of action she buys a school bus and rams into the car repeatedly until it blows up now assuming Bart was in there she just made the worst series of decisions in her entire life but luckily for her not only was bought not in the vehicle nobody was in the vehicle it was a ghost car she then talks to chief Wiggum who tells it good to the squid port when she gets there she asked the captain if he knows where Bart is he says he saw bought any black limo but not just any black limo this black limo and despite it being very evident very quickly that Bart is not in this vehicle she proceeds to chase the limo down and blow it to smithereens what is it with Lisa and blowing up vehicles are you ok child she returns to the captain he says he saw Bart board the boat she goes on the boat she finds Bart the day is saved all is well the game’s over roll credits sike bought cannot speak English what’s your favorite catchphrase kiss my grits with you but has forgotten who he is they remain wasp cameras all over Springfield and still nobody has spoken to Lisa about her vehicular homicide all tendencies all is most certainly not well enter level 4 you’re playing as Marge Simpson you’re back in the suburbs but now it’s dark Marge consults chief Wiggum to figure

out what has happened to Bart and Wiggum responds by saying get me some doughnuts so after she gets the doughnuts Wiggum tells her to speak to Cletus so she speaks to Cletus and Cletus says get me some ketchup so after she gets the ketchup Cletus tells her about the crop circles that have been appearing on his farm March aside she needs to speak to someone older and wiser about so she heads over to the cemetery to speak to mole man who then tells her to speak to Grampa Simpson because apparently he knows a thing or two about crop circles so she heads over to Grandpa Simpson he explains everything that’s going on but is saved the wasp cameras disappear and they all live happily ever after the game’s over roll credits psych grandpa Simpson cannot speak English so she has to run out and get his meds so he can start talking some goddamn sense in the next cut scene we see Marge give grandpa his medication and then ask about the crop circles he describes them as looking like the same symbol that appears on the new buzz Cola semaj goes back home and shows bought a can of buzz Cola which snaps him out of his trance even reveals that the Cola is a mind-control agent he was given up in the alien spaceship upon hearing that Nicola is responsible she asks Appu if he knows where it’s coming from and he says he has no idea Samad responds by chasing down and blowing up three Cola delivery trucks in a fit of rage at least we know where Lisa got it from it seems to run in the family level five baby were playing as Appu were back in downtown Springfield and we’re trying to figure out what the hell is going on now of who’s focused on finding out who’s responsible for the Cola trucks so he speaks to snake to see if they can use his criminal connections to get more information in exchange for the info snake has a poo help and carry out his community service and crimes and then tells him that the Cola trucks are registered to the Natural History Museum so Appu and Bart get together to head over there and in the next cutscene they find that the mind-control Cola is coming from a meteor and if you’re thinking this must be as wacky as the story gets you’ve got another thing coming after a quick debacle with a cone of infused dinosaur skeleton Bart and a poof aynd the aliens Kang and kodos talking in the museum bathroom they eavesdrop on their conversation and discover that the citizens of Springfield are unknowingly the stars of foolish earthlings an intergalactic reality show which is filmed via the wasp cameras the aliens also reveal their plan to boost the show’s ratings by release the Evo Cola into the water supply and providing everyone in Springfield with free laser guns good to prevent the aliens from putting laser guns in the hands of Cola drunk townspeople who I that sounds hilarious I watch that show there you like you’re a bad little boy now for level six Bart is back in the building the date is October 30th one day before Halloween Bart goes to a poo and asked for his help to foil the alien plot up who helps him they stop the aliens save Springfield harmony is brought back to the earth the game’s over roll credits psych Appu cannot speak English I’m sorry sir but I cannot speak English I only speak Hindi well you’re just scared of being vaporized by the space monsters up down up down go hot dog butter my undershirt blah blah blah so I push out the game he’s too scared of what might go down BOTS on his own on this one Bart figures he needs to find a way to get the word out so he goes to Krusty to tell him what’s about to go down in the hopes that he can plod Kosti on television Krusty does not believe him so Bart heads up to the observatory to speak to Professor Frink so hopefully he can find some proof to show Krusty shrink tells bought that the lasers are being hidden in duff trucks so bought chases down one of the trucks heads to the duff brewery and gets his hands on a laser gun bought them bumps into Principal Skinner and tells him all about what’s going down aliens are distributing deadly lasers all over Springfield we gotta warn everybody all we’ve got to do young man is get that illicit Googe out of your hands clearly you forgot the school’s zero-tolerance policy on lasers Skinner then proceeds to confiscate the laser gun from law despite the fact that this is not on school grounds this is not within school hours and he has no jurisdiction here surely this is illegal right with Skinner having taken the only proof Bart had to show to Krusty Bob proceeds to take the most logical course of action and murders Principal Skinner now that I can guarantee is illegal after getting the laser gun back he takes it to Krusty who finally believes him but who also reveals that it’s too late multiple three laser gun stands have already been set up all over town so Bart buys the supervillain car from Kearney destroy the stands and then drives over to Homer to tell him that the aliens have taken over the Duff brewery the aliens were also the ones who previously abducted and brainwashed his child but Homer decides that now there’s beer involved now it’s personal homer and Bart race over to the Duff brewery and then the

next cutscene the alien spaceship is shown emerging from the ground and the aliens reveal that the evil buzz Cola has spread through the Springfield water supply and is resurrecting the dead I told you had another thing coming I told you enter level seven we’re playing as Homer once again we are back in the suburbs of Springfield it is Halloween night and zombies ghouls and ghosts roam the streets now let me be honest if this was the sort of game I was looking for I woulda just stuck of scooby-doo from the stalks up on supplies to fend off the zombies before discovering that the alien spaceship is off top at a Springfield elementary playground he then follows an alien sports car to the nuclear power plant where he finds Professor Frink who reveals that the aliens weakness is nuclear waste which doesn’t surprise me I feel like everyone’s weakness is nuclear waste so both he and Frank drive a nuclear waste barrel to the spaceship so it can be sucked up by the tractor beam and damage the ship unfortunately this alone is not enough to take out the aliens so he has to repeat this process with his own car snakes car and Grampa Simpsons car respectively Grampa Simpson is sacrificed the spaceship blows up crashes to the ground the aliens plan is foiled the Simpsons have saved the day Homer is now an intergalactic celebrity all is well games over roll credits and that’s the story of the simpsons hit and run it was an absolute mess and I loved every minute of it the gameplay challenges in hit and run can be split into six main categories platforming timed collecting racing chasing evading and damaging each mission features at least one of these aspects although many feature them in different combinations for example there’s a mission where Homer has to jump across moving platforms to destroy the power couplings but there’s also the mission where Homer has to help Marge collect all the bone storm copies from the truck both are timed collecting missions but once mixed of platforming while the other is omits to chasing and damaging as we go through each level the difficulty gradually increases the first level essentially serves as a tutorial which is even self referenced by the levels loading screen whereas the last few levels of this game were the bane of mine and I’m sure many others childhoods particularly the mission where Bart has to destroy 25 laser gun stands in a minute and 40 seconds while avoiding damaging his car evading the police and returning to quasi Luo Studios before the timer runs out oh yeah and the mission where Pooh has four minutes and 15 seconds to collect garbage falling out of a garbage truck pick up 25 garbage cans da scattered all across the other side of town and then drive all the way back to snake before the timer runs out oh yeah and the last mission where you have a minute and 30 seconds to drive to the nuclear power plant pick up a waste barrel and drive it into the spaceships tractor beam while avoiding bumping into anything of your vehicle since doing so a result in a nuclear waste pile flying off the back of your car and exploding meaning you have to drive all the way back to the power plant and then all the way over to the playground again and all this before the timer runs out the amount of times I was so close to completing the final mission and then a police horse would just rear-end me or front end me or a tree would just exist essentially this game could be brutal and that’s part of the reason why I never ended up completing the thing when I was a young kid the other part of the reason was because my game disk is just randomly stopped working one day it’ll be like 9 out of 10 times put the disk in and you get that no disk screen on the PlayStation it was horrible and I tried everything to fix it I used rubbing alcohol I used Vaseline hell I even put the disc in a bowl of water and froze it I don’t know where I read to do that I think I just came up with that on my own after you finished the final mission of a level the game will be like congratulations level complete but like he only did like 20% of it so and that’s because this game is littered with collectables and other challenges on top of this 7 story missions each level also has a bonus mission where you help a character to complete a task whether that be collecting blood for grandpa or running errands of Principal Skinner and in return they’ll let you use their car whenever you want by calling them up at a phone box speaking of cars each level also has 5 vehicles you can get on top of the default vehicle that the character you’re playing as already owns three of them can be purchased one is collected from the bonus mission and one is earned after you win all three races in the level speaking of races each level has a time trial a checkpoint race and a circuit race with each one hosted by Ivan Nelson valve or Milhouse except in the final level where they’re hosted by zombies and once you’ve got all the vehicles you can also get all the clothing you can find all the gags you can destroy all the wasp cameras which

get more dangerous and difficult to kill as the game goes on there a buzz Cola crate some vending machines full of coins to destroy boy when I found this room nope but a control myself here each level also has a secret vehicle that you can find and drive whether that be this speed rocket that’s gotta be made of paper mache or something because one here with this thing it’s gone you can drive the monorail you can drive a boat car like you’re in bikini bottom there’s an ATV a monster truck you can drive in an RC car how did Homer even fit in that you know you can do the missions with these cause – this is what it looks like when you try and do the barrel mission with the RC car the bowel is bigger than the outcome one and on top of all that every level has seven hidden collector cards some are pretty easy to find some are a bit hard and some are easy to find but hard to collect and require precision jumping those were the most frustrating to get and each card features an item from the show along with information about the item the episode had appeared in Anna notable quote from the episode and all this is the main reason why I like this game so much this game was made for fans of The Simpsons every car Akata has is from the show the pink family sedan the owner Lola the Malibu Stacey convertible the canyon arrow the long horn the Ferrini that seventies call mr. plow the plow King the home of this broomstick but it’s not just the vehicles it’s the environments to Evergreen Terrace the kwik-e-mart mows the statue of jebediah springfield geeeee rusty loose studios lard lad doughnuts the Duff brewery the nuclear power plant Burns’s mansion and office complete with the trapdoors ice we’re trying to initiate this mission was the most annoying thing how am I supposed to get past and as if that wasn’t enough already you’ve got actors all over town ready to deliver funny one-liners Atty buttons press and don’t even get me started on the music this game had no reason to have a soundtrack this good but it did these songs seriously just slap and once you’ve completed the story collected every item seen all there is to see heard all there is to hear and done all there is to do you’ve still got multiplayer what yes multiplayer yes you and up to three friends can go head-to-head in the bonus game a multiplayer top-down racing mini game where you can use any vehicle and play as any one of the five main characters from the campaign there are seven tracks there’s nitro it has its own soundtrack it’s a whole other game within the game they really did not have to do this but they did and while I will admit I never played this thing I still think is pretty cool now despite all the good I’ve had to say about this game it definitely wasn’t without its issues the most common complaint I see revolves around the mission structures being quite repetitive which without the game’s funny dialogue would get old quickly I can agree with this especially when it comes to the last level where four out of the seven missions are essentially the same mission although there might be an explanation for this anyone who’s played this game might have noticed that in level seven there were some locations that have been blocked off the affluent part of Springfield where mr. Burns’s mentioned can be found and the inside of the nuclear power plant although to be fair they did add a new place the inside of Burns’s office with the earth with the trapdoors according to Joe McGann the senior game designer at radical these areas were removed due to time constraints since they’d opted to go for the Halloween theme in the final level and didn’t have enough time to spook if I every part of it the time constraints were also the reason for there being only three separate locations in this game despite there being seven levels therefore it’s also possible that the time constraints could have been the reason for the last few missions being repeated with the main difference being an increase in difficulty each time another criticism this game gets is that the 3d character models look pretty weird and although the graphics in this game clearly had a huge step up from road rage and further put skateboarding’s character models to shame I can see where this criticism is coming from like I said in my road rage video though I can’t really blame radical for this since bringing 2d characters to a 3d space will always be a challenge and the only other option we’ve been to go for a cel shaded approach like we got in 2007’s the simpsons game on a related note early footage of the game shows that the character models were originally a lot more similar to the ones found in road rage and although the characters seemed more animated in the early build of the game they were certainly a lot more creepy – I mean Jesus

one thing I’m sure radical didn’t expect was that their game would read a cult following but this is exactly what has happened with donut team this is a group of mothers dedicated to continuing the fun of The Simpsons hit and run with all sorts of crazy additions for the PC version of the game including an online multiplayer mod as well as this they’ve also worked and continued to work on developing entirely new sets of story missions for the game complete with all new dialogue challenges and collectibles I think what they’ve managed to do here is really impressive and I can’t wait to try out some of their work for myself and I’m sure they’d agree with me in saying that none of this would have been possible if not for the fantastic base game that had been created in the first place to conclude radical entertainment had no right to come up with a Simpsons game this good but seems the practice they got from making road rage as well as the extra development time they were able to negotiate for it made all the difference this may not be the perfect game but it is the perfect Simpsons game and it’s a shining example of a licensed game done right I’m grateful for everything that went into this one because it meant that the simpsons hit and run would forever go down as one of my favorite games of all time now did you know I played this game live on the stream in fact I live stream every weekday over on live dot time ago 24/7 for calm or just head to FB GG / time go 24/7 for we play games and have fun together so if you’d like to come through then be sure to give the page or follow I’ll leave a link in the description also if you’d like to pick up the brand new time ago gear you can head over to shop time ago calm the link is also in the description if you enjoyed the video be sure to leave a like and let me know what was your experience with the simpsons hit and run leave your answers in the comment section below anyway that’s all for me guys hope you enjoyed thanks for watching and I’ll see you in the next video you