User Rating: 8.4 | The Simpsons: Hit & Run PC
I am a huge fan of The Simpsons. Even as I type this review, I have 2 Simpsons games installed on my PC, a Simpsons music CD in my CD-ROM, a Simpsons trivia card game, 3 Simpsons books, and a 12 inch talking Homer doll on top of my case. All that is just the stuff within a 3 foot radius of me, not to mention all my other Simpsons paraphernalia. I will admit that previous games using the Simpsons license have been rather lackluster, although I did really enjoy playing The Simpsons: Road Rage. I like playing this game for the same reason as Road Rage, the dialog. All the principle voice actors lend their talents to this game. The missions and dialog recreate so many fond moments of the show, it brings a smile to my face each time I hear it. For any Simpsons fan, the dialog alone is worth the price of admission. The graphics are adequate for its purpose but the developers could have gone that extra mile and used cell shading to really give it that cartoon look. The characters do translate to 3D fairly well, there aren't too many instances where you would say that character just doesn't look right but they do exist. The environments are great, incorporating so many elements of Springfield like Barney's Bowlarama, the monorail, The Android's Dungeon, The Kwik-E Mart, and many more. I did find it disappointing that they just used the same 3 districts for the 7 chapters. As everyone knows, Hit & Run is GTA3 in Springfield. You have to talk to various characters and they give you missions that you have to accomplish to progress in the game. These missions involve retrieving objects, destroying vehicles, racing someone, avoiding someone, or a combination of the above. Later in the game, there will be multiple objectives in a mission. There are 7 main missions, 3 races, and 1 bonus mission in each chapter. When you accomplish certain tasks you will be awarded with special vehicles. This is one of the key elements of the game, you need a variety of vehicles and outfits. Some missions will require you to buy an outfit or vehicle from certain characters in the game. In one mission Apu has to buy his "American" outfit so that he won't be conspicuous when following a vehicle, in another mission Bart has to purchase Homer's Mr. Plow truck to collect all the escaped monkeys. The vehicles can be accessed, once you purchase or unlock it, by many of the payphones that are littered across the gameworld. Of course some vehicles are better at performing certain tasks than others, you wouldn't use school bus in race just as you wouldn't use a go cart to destroy a cola truck. Value is definitely there for any Simpsons fan. There are enough collector cards, bonus missions, and gags for the completionist. This game is a must-buy for any fan of the show.