You can rest easy, everybody. It looks like negotiations are over, contracts have been signed, and The Simpsons will be returning from its hiatus.
I speak, of course, about the franchise’s extended hiatus from video game consoles. Hard as it may be to believe, it’s been over seven years since the release of a Simpsons game on a dedicated gaming system. With EA’s attention focused on The Simpsons: Tapped Out, the hugely successful freemium game for iOS and Android devices, the prospects of a followup to 2007’s The Simpsons Game looked fairly dim. But now it looks like Homer and the gang just might be returning to consoles… just not in the way anyone expected.
Yesterday, The LEGO Group and Warner Bros. announced LEGO Dimensions, a new game & toy series in the lucrative “you have to keep buying plastic junk” category pioneered by Skylanders. Once you’ve plunked down a hundred bucks for the starter pack, you can buy additional characters and content from various franchises. Unlike its rival Disney Infinity, LEGO Dimensions won’t be limited to franchises owned by the same megacorporation – they’ve already licensed Back to the Future from Universal, for example.
On Twitter, @UKVGDeals highlighted what could be a clue to a certain other franchise in the extended trailer:
That’s right: a donut with pink frosting and sprinkles, 100% clear-cut confirmation that The Simpsons will be a part of the game in the future. (Aside: When and how did “donut with pink frosting” become the defining icon of The Simpsons, anyway?)
Still not convinced? Well, as fellow Twitter user Ryan W. Mead pointed out, a New York Times article mentions “Characters owned by 20th Century Fox are also expected to join Dimensions as it rolls out.” Clearly they must be referring to the Simpsons because, ha ha, does Fox even have any other franchises anymore?
So, there you have it, folks: The Simpsons is almost definitely coming back to consoles in the form of an add-on pack to LEGO Skylanders: The Game, by next year, probably. What’s less clear is if the show will still be on by then.
Wait, I just remembered the Minecraft pack. Eh, whatever.