Of all the licensed games that came out during the 2000s, The Simpsons Hit and Run managed to stand out. The vast majority of licensed games during that time garnered infamy for their poor quality, but this Grand Theft Auto-inspired Simpsons game earned positive reviews from critics and became a cult classic among players. Evidence of the enthusiasm that fans have for The Simpsons: Hit and Run came in the form of a fan remake using Unreal Engine 5 that surfaced last year.
Unfortunately, the creator of this remake, Reuben “Reubs” Ward, took it off his Patreon due to the legal complications he inevitably would have faced. Surprisingly, though, he recently uploaded a video that shows off a new and improved build of this remake.
A fully-realized Springfield
Easily the most significant feature in this new build comes in the form of a fully-fledged open-world map. Although the original Simpsons: Hit and Run had open, explorable areas, the limitations of the consoles at the time meant that the game had to split Springfield into multiple, individually-loaded segments. But now, thanks to the power of Unreal Engine 5, Reubs managed to combine all of these separate levels into a single explorable map. This, combined with the improved visuals and a host of other features, adds new life to this fondly-remembered Simpsons game.
Reubs has done an impressive job with The Simpsons Hit and Run remake, but it comes with a major caveat. The legal complications surrounding The Simpsons license have not gone away, so players will not be able to download the remake and try it out for themselves. An unfortunate situation, to be sure, but it at least shows that interest in this nearly 20-year-old game has not dissipated. Hopefully, one of these days, a playable Simpsons: Hit and Run remake of this scale will be possible.