Simpsons free-to-play iOS game coming soon

The Simpsons have starred in their fair share of video games. Now, the long-running sitcom is crossing the threshold into the mobile platform. EA is working on a free-to-play iOS game starring the Springfield cast, which will use microtransactions as shortcuts to speed up game progress. The game is due sometime soon with an Android version scheduled to hit a few months after the iOS version.

CNET (via Touch Arcade) reports that the game is called Simpsons: Tapped Out. It starts as Homer wipes out the city with a nuclear explosion that leaves all of its citizens safely unharmed. The player is tasked with rebuilding the city and taking on quests starring various Simpsons characters. Lisa, for example, helps clean up the city first. EA promises the rest of the family, along with characters like Duffman and Hans Moleman.

The microtransactions connect to the in-game economy. You can buy doughnuts with real-life money and spend them on upgrades, but it won't be necessary to complete the game. "People that don't want to pay can still enjoy the title," said EA senior mobile publishing VP Bernard Kim in the announcement. "People who are more impatient can throw a little bit of money at it."

Tapped Out uses the show's writers and voice actors, and even summons the show's self-deprecating wit to poke fun at mobile games and microtransactions.

"We want this to be one of the biggest titles this year," said Kim. "We've invested a lot. It's absolutely a top-tier development priority for us. Hardcore Simpsons fans will get a lot out of it."