Review by Walker Boh Ohmsford
"Ah, another day, another set of irradiated passengers...Excellent!"
A long time fan of the Simpsons TV show, I was highly disappointed with the majority of the attempts to bring this notorious family to the video gaming world. While the NES installments, though not great, were pretty fun, don't get me started on the others. Simpsons Wrestling for Play Station had a great deal of potential, but I never did get around to playing it. Fortunately, Simpsons: Road Rage delivers aplot that would make the perfect premise to a Simpsons movie. More on that later.
Gameplay 10-10. There are three modes of play here. in Road Rage, you play a Crazy Taxy type game wherein you must pick up various passengers and deliver them to their destinations. In Sunday Drive, it's the same as Road Rage except that there is no timer, which allows you to familiarize yourself with the controls and the area you're driving in. Mission Mode allows you to unlock a new car for Homer. In this mode, there are ten missions. In each, you take control of a specific character who has a specific goal. In Professor Frink's mission (he's the guy that talks about pain in the glaven or whatever), you must get Mayor Quimby to the City Hall in your hovercar to proove that it's worth the money or something. In Bart's mission, you Homer has snuck out of work to go watch a ball game, but was found out by Mr. Burns. Bart must get Homer safely back to work and avoid Mr. Burns. Completing Mission mode will get you the Homer, even if you skip all but the last mission. But where's the challenge in that?
Control 10-10. The excelerator is the A button, X reverses, B and Y act as breaks and R honks the horn. You should already know how to steer. Oh, and Z jumps.
Audio 10-10. Every tune in the game comes from the show, as does all the voice acting. Dan Castellaneta, Hank Azaria, Harry Shearer and all the rest perform their roles excellently, right down to Barney's world famous buurrrp! My favorite driver is Homer, whose lines are some of the funniest in the game. For instance, sometimes when he's told where to go, he'll make a comment such as, ''Oo, can I come?'' He even complains like he does in the TV show with comments such as, OOOuuuw, now I have a Wedgie!''
The SFX are top notch, with better car sounds than anything I've heard from the PSX (and PSX lovers need send no flames). Each vehicle has a different engine sound, and even a few horns are different. Professor Frink's car has this really annoying one, while Snake's car plays that rabbit song...you know the one I mean...I hope.
Story 10-10. As I said above, this story would make an excellent movie premise. Monty Burns has gained control of the public transit system, replacing the existing buses with new nuclear powered ones. Unfortunately, these new buses have one small...or rather large, flaw. They are a threat to public health. Rather than ride the infernal contraptions, select Springfielders take up the task of becoming a Taxy Service for the rest of Springfield. Their goal is to raise $1000000.00 and buy the old transit system back from Monty Burns.
Overall 10-10. It might not be fun for those Simpsons fans who are more diehard than I am, but it's definitely worth at least a rent.
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 04/05/03, Updated 05/23/03
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