October 17, 2001
The Simpsons Road Rage - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Rating Players Price
23/11/2001Electronic ArtsFox Interactive1-2$99.95

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Some of the wacky mayhem.
Perhaps the most exciting and original racing game in recent years is Sega's superb Crazy Taxi. The game sees you as a Taxi driver who must pick up and drop off passengers before the timer runs out to collect the fares. Following the success of the Naomi based arcade Crazy Taxi the game was successfully ported to the Dreamcast and this earlier year (thanks to Acclaim) to the Playstation 2. It was pretty obvious that clones would start to appear eventually, and The Simpsons Road Rage is one such title. Fortunately this game not only looks solid, but looks like it may even surpass Sega's classic game.

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2-player games should be terrific.
The Simpsons Road Rage includes over 25 Simpson characters, featuring voices, animations and unique relationships with other characters, who are either behind the wheel or wandering the streets of Springfield begging for a ride. Fox Interactive, who have been developing the title for some time now, have include 5 different Springfield neighbourhoods featuring over 100 Simpsons landmarks such as Moe's, the power plant, the Quik-E-Mart, the Church and of course all the neighbourhood houses. The interactive worlds provide an intensely busy community environment alive with traffic and pedestrian interaction that adds to commuters' road rage. Expect plenty of thrills and spills as you try to deliver the passengers before you run out of time.

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DOH!!
Perhaps the most interesting thing about this game is the inclusion of a story mode, which allows for 40 to 60 unique passenger deliveries, plus seven mini-bonus deliveries. It should add some longevity to the title, something which Crazy Taxi sorely missed. The developers have also included a Sunday Driving Mode which will let you pick up passengers and explore the city at a leisurely pace. It will be interesting to see how accurately the developers have recreated Springfield compared to the TV series.

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Stuck in the parade.
Other features of the game are the bonus system rewards players of all skill levels and lets players choose which characters and cars they want to unlock. A 2-Player split screen mode will let players beat opponents in a race for the next passenger, or steal their passenger mid-ride. This is yet another feature that this game will have over Sega's.

As you can probably tell from teh graphics the developers have retained the flat look of the TV series, but the game is still in full 3D with some wonderful character animations. As you would expect the game is choc full of Simpsons voices which are absolutely hilarious. This is one game to keep and eye on in the lead-up to Christmas.