At the Retrotech100 Facebook group this week we have been challenged to do the Arcade 20p Challenge using just 2 credits to take on The Simpsons arcade game. As usual we can practise all we like, but once we start recording we have just two credits to get as far as we can in this game. So I put in my practise runs, and then just twenty pence in UK currency to by my two credits to take on the world, or at least Springfield.
So the story starts with The Simpsons accidentally getting caught up in a diamond theft, and wouldn’t you know it Baby Maggie Simpson catches the dropped diamond and gets kidnapped. Now is your chance to select to play as one of the Yellow funsters to rescue Maggie. Your choice of player affects your weapon, but seems to affect little else in this scrolling beat em up arcade coin eater. Take Marge Simpson, and you get to bash the baddies with a vacuum cleaner, Bart uses his trusty skateboard as a weapon, Homer uses his whirling fists and Lisa whips the bandits with her skipping rope.
The whole experience, although fun, does feel like a bit of a cash in. Yes the characters are well drawn and animated, sure it has the feel of the Simpsons cartoons, but it is pretty much fight through some fairly easy to beat bad guys, then try to defeat the big boss, rinse and repeat. It has the usual beat em up tropes, extra energy in the form of collectable food, street furniture and pets you can throw and all the usual things. It just never seems to progress much. Defeat the army of hired goons along the way, and then take a huge health hit from the bosses and add more credits.
Keep feeding the hungry machine and you can keep yourself immersed in a game which is pretty similar to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles arcade experience, or indeed any of the other cartoon inspired beat em ups of the 90s. Fun for a short time, especially if you enjoy the quirkiness of the Yellow Springfieldians we all know as the Simpson family. See the gameplay below to see how our 2 credits panned out.