The Simpsons Arcade Game is one of the most sought after cabs going. It is a classic, not only for the brand of The Simpsons, but because it’s a very fun game and the cab looks fantastic.
The game itself is packed full of recognisable characters. While walking through downtown Springfield, the Simpsons collide with Smithers, who has just stolen a large diamond from a jewellery shop for Mr. Burns. The diamond goes flying and lands in Maggie’s mouth, and she begins sucking on it like a pacifier as Smithers kidnaps her. The rest of the Simpsons give chase across the city, fighting off hordes of enemies hired by Mr. Burns in order to reach the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant. The pursuit covers eight stages, each of which ends with a fight against a strong boss character. In the final stage, the Simpsons must defeat first Smithers and then Mr. Burns, who uses a mobile battle suit equipped with a variety of weapons. Once Mr. Burns is defeated, Maggie puts her pacifier in his mouth and the Simpsons take her home, with Homer throwing the diamond away.
The Simpsons is a side-scrolling beat ’em up that allows players to join in at any time. Two different cabinet models were produced: one allowing up to two simultaneous players, each able to choose a character, and another allowing four players with a dedicated position for each character. Controls consist of an eight-way joystick and two buttons to jump and attack.
The characters have distinctive attack styles; Homer punches and kicks, Marge swings a vacuum cleaner, Bart wields a skateboard, and Lisa attacks with a jump rope. Two characters standing close to each other can mount a combined attack, such as Homer and Marge holding each other’s ankles to roll around the screen and mow down enemies, or Homer placing Lisa on his shoulders so they can strike at two different heights. Each player has a health meter, which decreases upon being hit by enemies; food items can be picked up to replenish it. Players can also pick up and throw/swing items such as hammers, bowling balls, and mailboxes as melee weapons. One life is lost whenever a player’s health meter runs out; if all lives are lost, the player may continue the game by adding credits within a time limit. Two minigames played between stages require players to hit their buttons as quickly as possible, with computer-controlled enemies replacing any characters not in play.