The Simpsons Arcade Game

Bart on a skate board with hammer simpsons xbla

Let us go back to 90's, a time when games were simpler. Well with the release of THE SIMPSONS ARCADE GAME on Xbox Live Arcade©, those days are here again my friends. You can either look at this release from KONAMI and wonder why they bothered, or view it as a refreshing retro look back. I am not sure personally, maybe some things need to stay in the past. I must admit I did have fun playing this game for a while(ten minutes), but the lack of any challenge what so ever, along with the infuriating endless arcade music, quickly began to grate on me.

Originally released way back in 1991, it does show how far the gaming world has progressed over the years. It seems the video game industry's recent fad is to release updated, HD ready versions of old classics like HALO and METAL GEAR SOLID.Is this a sign the games companies are running out of ideas? I mean let’s face it back in the day when we knew no better, this franchised tie-in was the best thing in the arcade (maybe), but do we really want to be bothered with it again? It does look dated. Mind you as an app or a tablet game it might be distracting for a while. But as a console game, I don't know.

The story revolves around an evil SMITHERS (I know, who thought of that one? ) stealing a gem from Mr BURNS, which ends up being swapped for MAGGIE'S dummy, resulting in SMITHERS becoming a child snatcher (dodgy ground to be on for a game story). The ensuing chaos gives the go ahead for the other main characters to pursue SMITHERS through the street s of Springfield, fighting a variety of foes, including bosses at the end of each level. Each family member has different special move (if that’s what you can call them). BART uses his skateboard, MARGE can use the vacuum, all pretty basic stuff. As for game play, well it's what you would expect. You use two buttons, one for jumping, one for fighting and that’s it really. Alright you can pick up objects and throw them, and there are weapons like a hammer that can be used.marge being chased by bad guys in simpsons xbla

All of this doesn't take away from the age of this game. The simplicity will put off many gamers because we have all become way more sophisticated than this kind of thing. Ok if you are into retro gaming. then please invest your 800 Microsoft© points on it. And there possibly are some gamers out there who missed this first time round that perhaps want to be reminded of how far gaming has come in the past 20 odd years. Personally it’s nice to see how polished and graphically superior this game was in its day. Like I said, SIMPSONS ARCADE would make a great app, but as a game that is moderately expensive for what you get, it isn't really worth it. I have played free games that are way more of a challenge and are more sophisticated than this.

The biggest redeeming feature of this game is the on-line play and the multiplay elements, which I found fun, but don't bother if you want to play on your own.

homer shouting in simpsons xbla


THE SIMPSONS ARCADE GAME is a nice harks back to a bygone era, the repetitive music, easy gameplay and bright graphics. All of which is nice and nostalgic, but somewhat dated, with the new features and unlockables (open up Japanese version on completion). I can see the KONAMI has put some thought into it, as a multiplayer this is a fun game to play. It’s just a little too dated for my taste. I will give it 6 out of 10 as I do think it is a touch too easy and overpriced.

  • The Simpsons Arcade
  • Game
    Publisher: Konami
  • Developer: Backbone Entertainment
  • Genre: fighting/arcade
  • Release date:03/02/2012
  • Xbox 360©
  • Playstation 3©
  • PC
  • Commodore 64/128
  • XBLA©

Author: Dayvid

3D modeller freelance writer and artist based in the UK ,gaming enthusiast

1 thought on “The Simpsons Arcade Game

  1. Dayvid, I believe you may be right about the recycling. Just saw clips for re-released MGS coming out this fall, HD remastered of course. Guess there's only so many ways you can shoot, stab,and blow-up things before you run out of idea.  Many of the big titles seem to becoming like Office productivity software, over-bloated with "features" no one cares about.

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