The Simpsons Hit and Run gets an open world fan remake featuring online multiplayer

Springfield’s never looked so good.

Image via Fox Interactive

There must be something in the air this week that makes people really want to remaster 20-year-old games. If the latest rumors of a Metroid Prime remake aren’t doing it for you, perhaps a project seeking to remaster and improve on 2003’s hit The Simpsons: Hit and Run will instead.

The project is being undertaken by YouTuber reubs, who first created a remastered version of the beloved game last year. The remaster, though sadly unavailable for general use, enjoyed a deal of positive feedback, including from the lead designer on the original game. Since then, though, reubs has been hard at work expanding and improving the game beyond a mere graphical overhaul.

One of the biggest challenges that reubs wished to overcome was making the game entirely open-world — that is, use the benefits of modern technology to knit together all the disparate levels in the game into one cohesive map, with no loading screens. Other aims of the extended project included better vehicle physics, online co-op multiplayer, new and revamped quests and scenes, and even crisper graphics.

In the video dev diary reubs talks through the various steps used to achieve several of these goals, including using AI upscaling to improve textures and creating a new shader to produce shinier, more reflective windows. It’s a lot of work, but the results are undeniably impressive, even at this early stage.

Unfortunately, reubs is clear on one point right from the outset — the remake is for entertainment purposes only, and will never be available for general download. Still, at least any enterprising Simpsons fan can follow along with the project and, theoretically, recreate the steps themselves if they have the right tools and a beefy enough computer.