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Every Simpsons game ever: from worst to best

15. Itchy & Scratchy in Minigolf Madness (Game Boy, 1993)

It is madness. Absolute madness. You play as Scratchy, trying to play a simple round of mini golf (which equates to a 2D platformer with a ball you knock around the levels - a nice idea to be fair), while Itchy keeps attacking you with an woodcutter's axe. It's hard to 'play where it lies' when your head is on the floor. The game would arguably be better if Itchy wasn't in it. In fact, a lot of Scratchy's life would be better if Itchy wasn't in it. Did I mention that they bite, and fight? And bite and... ("YES!" -Everyone).

14. Virtual Springfield (PC/Mac, 1997)

It's a point-and-click adventure game set in Springfield! This is not as disastrous as it sounds. The voice acting is great (if a little slower-spoken than perhaps was necessary), Springfield looks exactly right (if a little pixelated), and there are jokes everywhere you click. Unless you click on something that isn't clickable. Then there are no jokes. It isn't exciting enough to be a real win, but it made great use of 1997's CD-based tech to bring gamers the closest experience possible to taking part in an episode of the show. A bit like The Stick of Truth did for South Park. Only with fewer dildos.

13. Bart vs The Juggernauts (Game Boy, 1992)

Ever seen American Gladiators? Of course you have. Well, this game is based on that. So Bart has to podium-joust two 'juggernauts', after jumping around on a checkerboard-esque basketball court. Oh, and skateboarding from left to right for a bit. I never thought it possible, but this both sucks and blows at the same time.

12. Bart's Nightmare (SNES, Mega Drive/Genesis, 1993)

Bart's got to run around, jumping on pages from his school report, at which point he gets sucked into a strange minigame world, where he turns into Bartzilla or... Indiana Jones? This at least has a decent Simpsons vibe to it, though it's too repetitive and laborious to truly be fun. Ah well, a decent effort that hasn't gotten significantly worse with age.

11. The Simpsons: Minutes to Meltdown (Mobile, 2007)

Remember when mobile phones were just mobile phones? And smartphones were just phones that looked really posh, or maybe had a necktie stuck to them? Well, there were games on those. And one of them was Minutes to Meltdown, where Homer has to prevent a nuclear explosion after neglecting his duties. Again. I can't say I've played it, but I'm so glad we don't have to put up with number buttons as D-pads now. Ugh.

10. Itchy & Scratchy Land (Mobile, 2009)

Another mobile offering, this one sees you attempting to traverse the infamous Disney Land-esque Itchy & Scratchy Land. Unnecessary Surgery Zone is always a firm family favorite, right? You get to play as four Simpsons characters, although a little creativity has been applied to their abilities. Marge has a vacuum gun. Lisa has a bomb generator. Comic Book Guy actually says in it "Congratulations on playing the worst. Cell phone game. Ever!" That's got to bode well for its quality.

9. Bart Simpson's Escape from Camp Deadly (Game Boy, 1991)

This is a Game Boy platformer, with only two frames of walking animation for Bart and very little actually going on while you play. GamesRadar's Dave H swears it was/is a good game. I have never played it. But I can see it on YouTube and it looks awful. Plot-wise, at least, it's classic Simpsons, with the kids staying at summer camp, only to be bullied and harassed by the evil nephew of Monty Burns. With an escaped psycho also on the loose, I'd love to say fun and hijinks ensue, but I just don't feel that would be accurate. Sorry, Dave. Sorry, Bart.

8. Night of the Living Treehouse of Horror (Game Boy Color, 2001)

This one has a bad reputation, which is a little unfair. Given the limitations of the GBC hardware, this is actually an endearing take on the Treehouse of Horror Hallowe'en specials in the series proper. Trying to stop Santa's Little Helper from becoming Satan's Little Helper tickles me in ways that if Loretta were to tickle me, I would say... Oh, sorry, wrong show. But it's still funny. And I love the idea of haunted attics and spooky goings-on in suburban America. This isn't a disaster.

7. The Simpsons: Road Rage (Multi, 2001)

This is the most shameless rip-off of any game I've ever seen ever. And I've seen Flappy Owl. It's clearly just a shoddy clone of Crazy Taxi, removing all the finesse and quality and replacing it with overly-repetitive sound bites and garish graphics. But what annoyed me most of all was my best friend in college who refused to play Crazy Taxi, but played the hell out of this. You can't imagine my frustration. All of the frustration.

6. Bart vs The Space Mutants (Multi, 1991)

This was the big one. The 16-bit (with 8-bit conversions) Simpsons game that looked like the show, only you could play it. And it still holds up pretty well (provided you steer clear of the NES version), thanks to smooth scrolling, colorful visuals, and a neat 'X-Ray Specs' mode that lets you see the same world, only now the space mutants are no longer disguised as normal people. Yes, the skateboarding bit is fun, and no, I still can't get off the first level (it's not my fault, it's the reed! Er... I mean, 'pad'), but I like this one. Clunky, basic, but dressed up in 1991's finest clothes, this was something of a pleasant surprise when I picked it up in a second-hand shop recently. Even if Bart's 'Eat My Shorts' begins to grate after a few deaths. Well, one. Ok, halfway through the first one.

Justin Towell

Justin was a GamesRadar staffer for 10 years but is now a freelancer, musician and videographer. He's big on retro, Sega and racing games (especially retro Sega racing games) and currently also writes for Play Magazine,, PC Gamer and TopTenReviews, as well as running his own YouTube channel. Having learned to love all platforms equally after Sega left the hardware industry (sniff), his favourite games include Christmas NiGHTS into Dreams, Zelda BotW, Sea of Thieves, Sega Rally Championship and Treasure Island Dizzy.