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"The Simpsons Game" is a video game which is available for the Wii, Nintendo DS, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, and PlayStation Portable. Each version has an exclusive cover art. It is a third-person action game featuring an original storyline written by Tim Long, Matt Selman, and Matt Warburton. The plot is self-referential in nature, with the Simpson family discovering that they are forced to participate in another Simpsons video game. Similar to the show, the game pokes fun at popular culture, other video games, and EA, its developer.
Homer's super-attack is burping. His main power is eating to turn into Homer Ball, a big ball to burst or slam enemies or walls. His other power, which he gets later in the game, is inhaling helium to turn into "Heli-Homer", a big gas ball to float into the air. Another of his powers is eating Gummi Venus de Milos to turn into "Gummi-Homer", a big gummi ball to shoot gummi balls to enemies. In the Xbox 360 and PS3 version, Homer's shield item is a hot-pepper to turn into "Lava-Homer", a big lava ball that can walk on hazardous terrain, like barbed wire and defeat enemies and destroy things by touching them, although he can't use any abilities other than the aforementioned ones.
Bart can shoot rocks or other things with his slingshot, which later becomes a wrist rocket. He can also turn into Bartman: he can glide opening his cape, climbing walls and ziplines and grappling into grapples. In the Xbox and PS3 version, Bart's shield item is a metal head to turn into "Robo-Bart", a robotic version of himself to shoot lasers through glass, but he can't use Bartman abilities nor the charged shot. In the PS2 and PSP version, Bart's major power is making bats fly out of his cape.
Lisa can stun enemies playing her saxophone. She can also enter a meditation point in on a Buddha statue to use the Hand of Buddha: she can pick up and drop big things controlling her hand with her mind. She can later flick, electrocute or freeze enemies with it. In the Xbox and PS3 version, Lisa's shield item is a comic book to turn into "Clobber Girl", a superhero version of herself to destroy things only Marge's mob can break, but she can't use the sax nor the Hand of Buddha.
Marge has a megaphone to recruit people to a mob and tell them to destroy, fix or build things and to step on platforms. She can also place Maggie into crawlspaces. In the Xbox and PS3 version, Marge's shield item is a police hat to turn into "Marge Cop", which makes her stronger and invincible while her mob can throw rocks at enemies (She's the only character that doesn't get nerfed when invincible, merely that she can't use the megaphone blowback).
Maggie has no powers, but Marge can send her through small openings into shafts that her family can't access.
The game has 16 levels. Some of them can be picked up randomly, while most of them have to be completed to
get to the next one. There are several hubs in which these can be picked up: the Simpsons house, the backyard of the house, and the game engine. In the Xbox and PS3 version, all of Springfield can be explored and the levels are started from certain buildings, depending on the main location of the level.
Homer is in a chocolate world when he meets a white chocolate bunny. Homer then attempts to run after. along the way Homer kills some brown chocolate bunnies and climbs a big cake before he wakes up and it was all a dream.
Bart buys Grand Theft Scratchy from the Sequel Stop only to have it confiscated by Marge (she puts it is Homer's underwear drawer along with his BB gun and swimsuit magazines) then when Bart goes in an alley outside he finds the Simpsons Game manual. When Bart tries out his powers (he turns into Bartman), he finds Homer and they go down the man hole near the Springfield Natural History Museum (Homer was going to shoot bats while reading swimsuit magazines). While underground, they find out that Jimbo, Kearney and Dolph have been sent by Principal Skinner to steal museum artifacts. Bart and Homer stop them and the police arrest Skinner.
Using his new powers, Homer competes in the annual Duff Ultimate Eating Challenge contest with Bart helping him. Homer goes through Mexico, Australia, and Germany before climbing up the Eiffel Tower and destroying Stone Hedge in Scotland and a giant meatball in Italy. Homer also destroys the Statue of Liberty and a giant hamburger. Moe (Homer's coach) then congratulates him but Homer accidentally bites off his arm. The last year's winner Akira presents him with the winners belt but it doesn't fit.
Bart tells Lisa of her new powers and decide to stop Mr. Burns' lumbering company from cutting down trees. After destroying several machines, they save bird-watchers Lenny and Carl stuck under a tree on a conveyor belt. Once destroying the main factory, however, Bart and Lisa accidentally lay off hundreds of workers. Mr. Burns decides to have his goons rough up Al Gore at the destruction of his plant.
Marge watches as Martin Prince carjacks Ned Flanders' hatchback after purchasing the new video game, Grand Theft Scratchy and decides to protest the video game violence despite Mayor Quimby's taking of bribes. She uses her powers of mob forming to form a group of protesters consisting of Ned Flanders, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Edna Krabappel, Waylon Smithers, Abraham Simpson, Moe Szyslak, Snake Jailbird, and Seymour Skinner. Though the police forces intervene, the mob is able to make it to the town hall to find that the mayor has declared it Itchy and Scratchy Day. Maggie is able to crawl through the ventilation system and watches Quimby take bribes. Maggie is able to heat up the pool forcing the mayor and the video game representative to leave. After seeing the destruction and the mob the video game representative takes back his bribe and Marge is pleased, though Lisa points out the irony of marge's use of violence to get her way, which was what she was objected about.
After the aliens attack, Bart and Lisa go to see Professor Frink, but he has been transported to a different world and they decide to follow him. When they reach the world it is a giant videogame world full of versions of popular videogame characters such as versions of Mario and Sonic the Hedgehog. They find that Frink has been kidnapped by an ape (a parody of Donkey Kong), but Lisa uses her new Hand of Buddha powers to send the ape into the acid (As the Ape is sent into the acid, he gives a thumbs up, similar to the T-800 when being melted down in Terminator 2: Judgement Day. Frink gives them cheat codes, but decided to stay in the videogame world because he was marrying a Koopa (from the Mario franchise).
After being zapped by a ray by Kang and Kodos, evil dolphins invade the pier (from Treehouse of Horror XIV, and Bart and Lisa need to help the Sea Captain to defeat the dolphins and aliens. It appears that when you levitate as Lisa in the last part of the level, the Sea Captain says dump the jellyfish in the water, Snorky goes into the water, so like the Treehouse of Horror XI episode Snorky is the king dolphin. The level ends with possibly killing Snorky and a good end of the level, until Kang and Kodos are in their spaceship waiting for revenge, and egg rolls to be done.
The level starts with the news anchor Kent Brockman talking to Bart and Homer, saying "Are you insane!?". Then Homer starts talking into the camera before running of to defeat the Lard Lad Donuts mascot. Bart shoots his slingshot at three hatches on Lard Lad and he has to hop on a hatch and disable his wiring. Then Lard Lad collapses. At the end of the level Homer is seen punching Lard Lad's crotch and yelling "Eat fist! Lard Crotch!" The aliens seek revenge.
Bart and Homer go to save the Springfield Mall and Cletus from aliens. Homer uses his helium power to fly over to every switch, and when you pull them steam comes out that Bartman can fly over. Once you reach the mall's car park you both stand in front of two doors and they open and you get sucked into the space ship. Then you save Cletus. While Cletus and Bart are fighting the aliens, Homer uses his ball power to damage energy things. Then they find out that Sideshow Bob is behind it.
The Simpson family is confronted by an alien spaceship commanded by Kang and Kodos. After Bart points the easy and repetitive way to his family, the alien duo decides to cover up their weak point, making them indestructible to the family. When Homer accidentally spills beer all over the keyboard while the family are on the internet, they are sucked into the computer and are sent to the Game Engine. They discover Will Wright and discover that he is destroying all of the copies of an old 8-bit Simpsons game. After saving the games from destruction by disabling the factory and Will Wright ranting about his jealous enemies at EA, the video game families meet. The older 8-bit family informs the current Simpsons that their game will be destroyed as well in the future, but the Simpsons tell their older selves that their world is already being destroyed. The 8-bit Simpsons tell them that the only way would be to talk to the creator. And to get to him you would need the four key cards found in four other Simpsons video games.
The eleventh episode, titled NeverQuest, consists of the characters Marge and Homer. As they prepare to enjoy a level without the kids, three hobbits (being Rod Flanders, Todd Flanders and Ralph Wiggum) pass them fleeing from a two-headed Patty and Selma dragon. While Homer battles the dragon with his girth, Marge leads a mob of children to repair the houses damaged by the dragon. After wounding the dragon enough, it flees to its mountain base. Homer and Marge continue through a magically sealed door by kicking it open. With the help of a mob of children they go through a magical castle while laying waste to any orcs (Moe Syzslak) or ghosts (Otto) in their way. They confront the dragon again and Homer's gummi ability slays Selma and Patty. They find the Selma/Patty key card in the monster's nest and Homer clutches it calling it "His Precious."
Marge and Lisa are in Caninewood, the setting of the Grand Theft Scratchy game. Seeing all the run-down buildings, cat prostitutes and constant gunfights, Marge decides to take matters into her own hands and tidy up the place. So, she assembles a mob of dogs to fight off violence and fix the buildings into more kid-friendly ones. Eventually, they cross the bridge to the other island, where Poochie sends suicide-bombing cat hos to destroy the ice cream trucks. But, Lisa fends them off, allowing Marge's mob to go and destroy Poochie's concert stage. After that, the Senator from "Mob Rules" appears and is pleased to announce an end to video game violence. However, a heart-shaped decoration on the candy shop's sign falls onto her. Marge and Lisa find the Poochie key card in her purse, then slowly back away.
Homer and Bart receive their mission information from Admiral Abe Simpson, then wind up in a small French town. There, they see Uter throw a rock at one house. Almost immediately, 24 white flags pop up in surrender. Admiral Simpson tells Homer and Bart to get those white flags before the French have a chance to kiss German butt. Private C. Montgomery Burns suggests that they take the paintings for "safe-keeping". After Homer and Bart take all the white flags, Admiral Simpson gives word that Private Burns stabbed them in the back and is retreating with the paintings on his own cargo ship. There, Homer and Bart have to reach the top of the boat where Private Burns is, planting C4 explosives where necessary. Eventually, using Bart's gliding and Homer's helium abilities, they reach the top and take Private Burns into custody. As thanks, the mayor of the village rewards Homer with one of their prize paintings—which conveniently has the Private Burns key card!
Homer and Lisa appear in a Japanese landscape. Behind them appears Mr. Dirt (aka Milhouse, only bigger and he looks almost like Katamari Damacy's King of All Cosmos). Lisa once again refuses to be his queen, resulting in him complaining on what more he has to do to win her over, leaving. So, Homer and Lisa reach the village, where blue sumos (appearing like Comic Book Guy) emerge from the filthy water. Lisa uses the Hand of Buddha to place the three lanterns back in their slots around the well. From it appears Mr. Sparkle, who tells of the disrespectful energy company seeking to take over the land. To restore harmony, Homer and Lisa have to find the three Sparklemon (a parody of Pokémon) in the three corners of the earth. Crossing a field of lava to the Well of Fire, where fire-sumos mock the duo and even make references to Kingdom Hearts by quoting Ansem's iconic line, "Every heart returns to darkness.", Homer and Lisa battle Jimbo's Pikachu-like Sparklemon in a Pokémon-style cutscene battle. After that, Mr. Sparkle converts the Sparklemon into its container. Then, Homer and Lisa go to the Well of Ice, where they defeat Ralph's Squirtle-like Sparklemon. Then, riding an airship into the sky, they enter the Well of Air, defeating Sherri and Terri's unicorn Sparklemon. After that, they restore the Sparklemon to the village's well, freeing Mr. Sparkle from Mr. Dirt's banishment. As he leaves, Mr. Sparkle cleans the place and turns Mr. Dirt into the ever-pathetic Milhouse, who surrenders his Mr. Dirt key card. As Homer and Lisa leave, the three Sparklemon beat up Milhouse.
Using the key cards, the Simpsons gain access to the Creator's mansion. The 8-bit Simpsons can't believe, however, that they made it this far and only got 4 points (referring to the key cards, which they thought was the Simpsons' score). Inside the mansion, Homer and Bart start things off by peeing in the Creator's yard. Meanwhile, the Creator, AKA Matt Groening, sees the two delinquents in the act and sends out the attack force—after correcting his secretary that it's pronounced "gray-ning", not "groaning". Eventually, Homer and Bart made it to Groening's private chambers, where he has them battle Benders and Dr. Zoidbergs summoned through quick sketches. However, Homer uses his ball form to roll up a slope and break the catwalk that Groening stood upon. After that, Homer and Bart start kicking him. Lisa asks why he betrayed his own creations. Groening pretends to be sorry, shortly before hitting the Game Engine's self-destruct button. He escapes in his helicopter, but before leaving, he writes his signature in midair.
The characters from the games escape from their crumbling worlds. The Simpsons and all the characters escape through the only portal that held—the Springfield portal. Safe in the Simpsons' house, Bart points out that the aliens are still attacking. Lisa then decides to go to the one authority higher than Matt Groening—God. She uses her Hand of Buddha power to construct a tower, which the Simpsons and other inhabitants of Springfield use to reach Heaven. Before Homer and Bart can get through the gate with Marge and Lisa, William Shakespeare closes them off. For no reason, he starts attacking using exploding Yorick skulls. After Homer and Bart defeat him, Bart and Lisa explore Heaven. There, they encounter powered-up enemies (only with halos over their heads), including aliens, loggers, chocolate rabbits, and dolphins. Eventually, they build another Skybuck's, and from the other one comes Benjamin Franklin, who attacks them using lightning from his key. After they defeat him, they proceed up the stairway... They then see God playing a video game. They demand that he end the madness, but instead, he attacks the family in a Dance Dance Revelations battle to "Rock You Like a Hurricane". The family has to defeat his Praystation, Xodus Box, and his Hii (Iam in Wii version) by stepping on the arrows in the right time to destroy the enemies and keep them from hurting his life bar. After the Simpsons eliminate God's consoles, Bart threatens to drop God's memory card if he doesn't help them and explain everything. Since he's at the final boss of Oblivion and can't bear to start over again, God concedes. He explains that the Simpsons are just video game characters designed by computer nerds in cubicles to be controlled by other computer nerds in their bedrooms. It appears that God has become immersed in playing a game called "The Planet Earth", in which The Simpsons Game is just a mini-game of. God then explains how Bart found the game manual. After God agrees to fix Springfield and all the other games, give video game characters better working conditions, let the Simpsons keep their powers, and supposedly granting Homer three wishes, Lisa asks him if he wonders if he's a video game character, too. While God claims how dumb that sounds, the camera shows that Ralph Wiggum was playing the game. Then, he notices the player and tells his dad that people are looking at him.
Players are able to control four of the five members of the family, each with their own unique abilities. Maggie is, in effect, an extension of Marge, briefly being playable in air ducts and other small spaces. Two different family members are playable on each level, aside from The Land of Chocolate tutorial where only Homer is playable, and the final level, which allows all of the family members to be used on the PS3 and Xbox 360 (In the Wii, all characters except Marge is used). The game contains 16 levels, known as episodes. Each episode requires specific skills related to the characters in that episode. For example, in Lisa the Tree Hugger, you are required to use Lisa's Hand of Buddha skill to move large objects, and Bart's slingshot skill to shutdown numerous machines. Unique enemies are featured in all episodes with the exception of the final level, in which the enemies are "recycled" with different colors and a halo over their head.
Several after-episode challenges exist. These include finding all the collectibles for each character, finding all the videogame cliches, completing the episode under a certain amount of time, not dying once, and in the PS3, 360 and DS versions, completing a certain task related to the episode's plot in a time trial. While the game for each system includes two episodes set in Springfield, a Springfield hub is also included that can be explored freely without any goals, and contains additional collectibles and cliches. These two versions also have extra mini-games, including parodies of Joust, Pokémon and Space Invaders. All versions have mini-game parodies based on Gauntlet, Missile Command, Frogger, and Dance Dance Revolution. Each family member has their own abilities, with the PS3 and 360 version having character-unique power-ups. Bart is similar to a traditional platform character, with slingshot, grapple and cape to glide, the ability to use ziplines and a power-up that turns him into a RoboCop-esque RoboBart, with invulnerability and lasers that can go through glass and destroy enemies and obstacles in one hit. Homer's abilities are similar to Katamari Damacy, as he turns into a giant ball to eat food and burst through obstacles and enemies, and he can also burp, inhale helium and turn into Gummi Homer, enabling him to shoot candy projectiles at enemies. His power-up is a spicy Guatemalan chili that transforms him into an invincible ball of lava. Marge plays somewhat similar to Captain Olimar from the Pikmin series of games, by recruiting a mob of civilians she can use to destroy, repair and build parts of the environment, and to attack enemies. She can also use a megaphone as a weapon to blow back and sometimes kill adversaries, Maggie, inside a carrier on Marge's back, can be deployed into small areas for certain objectives and her power-up is Marge Cop, giving her strength and invincibility, and arming her mob with rocks. Lisa has a saxophone, that can both stun and kill enemies, and her main power is using Hand of Buddha ports to move objects across the landscape, and to flick and smash enemies, and send lightning bolts to the ground, and turn enemies into ice-cubes. Her power-up is Clobber Girl, giving her super-strength and invincibility.
EA revealed the game on May 2, 2007 with a countdown timer in a parody of Rockstar Games' countdown to Grand Theft Auto IV in April 2007, with only the number "XXII" on the page (referring to the fact that it is the 22nd video game in the Simpsons franchise). The game was officially unveiled at The Simpsons 400th episode party at 20th Century Fox studios on May 8, 2007.
Earlier, several sources had reported apparent plans that a game directly based on The Simpsons Movie was to be released as a tie-in, due to EA's handling of other licensed film tie-ins and after the game with the current title was found on a retailer product listing. The official site is featured as the viral site of a game named "Grand Theft Scratchy: Blood Island", the same game which Marge is trying to boycott in the game's plot. It has four trailers, one with "Grand Theft Scratchy" based on Grand Theft Auto, one with "Medal of Homer", a parody of the Medal of Honor games, "Big Super Happy Fun Fun", a parody of Japanese culture and anime, which includes Milhouse with two tubes coming out of the sides from his head (a reference to Katamari Damacy), and "Neverquest" a parody of Everquest, Legend of Zelda, and Lord of the Rings.
This game features cel-shaded graphics, in contrast with the "solid 3D" rendering used in the previous three Simpsons games released (The Simpsons Road Rage, The Simpsons Skateboarding, and The Simpsons: Hit and Run). The PS3 and Xbox 360 versions use a "flattening" technique to render true 2D graphics, instead of the traditional 3D cel shading method, and the DS is a 2.5D platformer. Many cutscenes feature the 2D style, shown like a normal Simpsons episode (except for the DS version, which has 3D rendered cutscenes).