The Simpsons: Hit & Run is a 2003 action-adventure game developed by Radical Entertainment and published by Vivendi Universal Games. It is based on the American animated sitcom The Simpsons, and is the twenty-second installment in the Simpsons series of video games.
The game follows the Simpson family and their friend Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, who witness many strange incidents that occur in Springfield; security cameras, mysterious vans, crop circles, and a "new and improved" flavor of the popular soft drink Buzz Cola that causes insanity. Taking matters into their own hands, they discover numerous shocking secrets, and soon realize these incidents are part of a larger alien conspiracy, caused by Kang and Kodos. The gameplay largely focuses on exploration and missions; players often race enemies and interact with supporting characters on timed quests. The game also features many elements found in role-playing games, such as a branching storyline and side tasks.
Beginning in early 2002, the development of The Simpsons: Hit & Run was extensive. The team sought to differentiate the game from The Simpsons: Road Rage, deeming their new entry into the franchise required a different direction. The game was heavily inspired by the Grand Theft Auto series, and the development team re-purposed the open-world design and nuanced character development for the game. This encouraged collaboration with the show's writers and cast, who helped craft the story and dialogue. It was released in September 2003 for the GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Xbox. It was then ported to Microsoft Windows two months later.
Upon release, it received positive reviews from video game critics, with praise particularly focused on the interpretation of The Simpsons television series as a video game, its parodical take on Grand Theft Auto III, and graphics, while criticism mostly surrounded some aspects of gameplay, such as bugs and glitches. It is often considered to be the best Simpsons tie-in game and has gained a cult following. The game was also a commercial success, with recorded sales of over 3 million worldwide. It received the award for Fave Video Game at the 2004 Nickelodeon Australian Kids' Choice Awards. On the PlayStation 2, GameCube, and Xbox, it earned Greatest Hits, Player's Choice, and Platinum Hits respectively.
Sound Effects Used
- Hollywoodedge, Bottle Rocket 2 Picco PE098501
- Hollywoodedge, Car Crash SS010101
- Hollywoodedge, Medium Crowd AdultsY PE142901 (Heard on the TV at the start of Level 7 mission 1.)
- Hollywoodedge, Yelper Siren Multipl PE081101 (Used for police sirens.)
- Maggie Sucking Pacifier Sound (Used in the menus.)
- Sound Ideas, BUBBLES, UNDERWATER - STEADY UNDERWATER BUBBLES (Used for the pickled eggs gag in Moe's.)
- Sound Ideas, DOOR, WOOD - FRONT DOOR: OPEN
- Sound Ideas, FIRE, BURST - SMALL BURST OF FLAMES IN WOOD STOVE 01 (Used for the Flaming Moe's gag.)
- Sound Ideas, FIRE, BURST - SMALL BURST OF FLAMES IN WOOD STOVE 02 (Used for the Flaming Moe's gag.)
- Sound Ideas, FIRE, BURST - SMALL BURST OF FLAMES IN WOOD STOVE 04 (Used for the Flaming Moe's gag.)
- Sound Ideas, RATCHET - HAND: LOOSEN NUT, CONSTRUCTION, WRENCH
- Sound Ideas, SPACE, DOOR - SPACE DOOR: ACTIVATE 01 (Used for the door to Homer's office in the power plant.)