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The Simpsons Review

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D'oh!

★★★★★

While gaming hacks are always searching for innovation and originality when tearing new titles to shreds, sometimes it’s fun to play a genre game that doesn’t do anything particularly new, but does everything extremely well. And while The Simpsons Game won’t win any awards for creativity, the jaundiced family’s latest outing is an hilarious take on traditional platforming action.

As the game unfolds players are presented with countless parodies of videogame culture, poking fun at established franchises such as Grand Theft Auto and EverQuest, while at the same time lampooning popular gaming genres, garish Japanese adventures, and the candy-coloured worlds of Mario and Sonic. Simpsons fans will also be charmed by the myriad references to episodes from the TV show and cameos from memorable characters – Matt Groening included – and the fact the characters are all brought to life by the original TV voice talent means the title feels like a true extension of the Simpsons universe.

But if you’re not a Simpsons devotee, the game’s charms are short-lived: the action is cruelly clichéd and you won’t find anything new amongst the familiar platform hopping; the co-op mode falls flat as the action is unbalanced and always favours one player over their partner; and the whole thing can be completed in a little under eight hours, with no reason to return once the end credits have rolled.

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