"The Secret of Monkey
Island" is the first in the series of these games and was release in 1990.
It revolutionised the Adventure game on the home computer as we knew it. All of the games
follow a young wannabe pirate named Guybrush Threepwood in his quest to become a
Pirate. What set this game apart from anything else that came before it was the excellent
humour! Although looking dated by today's standards... the humour and story still hold up,
in fact, "The Secret of Monkey Island" is still considered by many as the
best of the series.
You start off on Melee Island,
a small, unhappy island deep in the Caribbean. There is a shortage of pirates because of a
Ghost Pirate roaming about the sea, causing terror and other general Ghost pirate stuff.
This would be the evil Ghost Pirate LeChuck who is also in love with the lovely Elaine
Marley, Governor of Melee Island.
To cut a long story short... boy meets girl, Ghost steals girl, boy
sails after girl, Ghost gets zapped, Boy gets girl and lives happily ever after, almost.
Ok, not quite the story... but if you want to know about the story in depth I really
recommend playing the game.
"Monkey Island 2: LeChucks
Revenge" finally appeared two years after "The Secret of
Monkey Island". Much to everyone's surprise it was even better than the first!
Funnier, bigger and better looking.
This chapter of the story sees our hero Guybrush Threepwood
boring people to death with his tale of zapping the Ghost Pirate LeChuck, even
though no one seems very interested (not that they would believe him anyway!) he
continues. Guybrush reveals that he is here on Scabb Island ) looking for the legendary
treasure of Big Whoop! One other small detail worth mentioning is that LeChuck
doesn't feel like staying dead and so has been re-animated into a lovely rotting Zombie!
Guybrush Thrushweed's quest for Big Whoop eventually takes him to a
total of four Carribbean islands (and one Zombie Pirates Fortress) before he finds Big
Whoop! You don't really find out what Big Whoop is until The Curse of
"The Curse of Monkey Island" is
the third Monkey Island game... and it is a great improvement on the previous two.
The humour remains faithful to the
first two games. From the moment the first chicken floated by Guybrush in the intro... to
the end sequence! It's the little things that makes it so great, like the clock on Plunder
Island... it tells the right time and chimes the LeChuck tune.
Featuring the voices of Gary Coleman
(Arnold of Diff'rent Strokes)! Dave Madden (Ruben Kincaid of The Partridge Family)! Alan
Young (Wilbur Post of Mr. Ed and 'Scrooge McDuck' from 'Duck Tales')! CMI also features
some great moments which I would class as 'classic' right up there with the 'Ghost Dance'
and 'Sword Fighting' from MI1 and the 'Skeleton Dance' in MI2. The Pirate Ship Song is
The latest in the "Monkey
Island" series was released in November 2000. This was the fourth game in the series
and some would say "by far the best".
I have only just purchased this game so I am a
new player and cannot therefore comment but things are looking good so far. Watch this
space for further reviews as I play more. The only thing that has annoyed me so far is the
interface - no use of the mouse and lots of use of arrow keys and letters to 'use', 'pick
Below is another review of the game:
Monkey Island is the fourth in the well respected series that stretches way back to the
days of the Amiga. Can Guybrushs latest swashbuckling adventure match up to the
Upon returning from his honeymoon with his lovely new bride Governor
Elaine Marley-Threepwood, Guybrush Threepwood has discovered some rather nasty secrets
about Melee Island. Elaine has been declared dead, the Governors mansion is
set to be torn down and a hauntingly familiar politician (a Mr. Charles L. Charles) is
about to take Elaines place.
Whilst the gorgeous Elaine scrambles to launch a re-election
campaign, You, as Guybrush are sent on a small legal errand that catapults you into a
world of thievery, voodoo and strange prosthetic devices (seriously). Armed only with your
razor sharp wit, you must navigate ever deeper into a villainous scheme to wipe out the
Tri-Island Area using the fearsome power about the legendary Ultimate Insult.
Can you make the Caribbean safe again for fun-loving, grog-swilling pirates like yourself?
If you have played any of the Monkey Island games before then you
will be familiar with the great sense of humour included in the game. However, newcomers
to the graphic-adventure scene will be pleasantly surprised by the tongue-in-cheek belly
laughs that lie in store. Escape From Monkey Island isnt afraid to slip in a
here and there. Lucasarts have promised more jokes, more puns and more of those famous
cutting insults for you to deliver to unwitting foes.
However, the biggest difference between Escape From Monkey Island
and its predecessors is the switch from 2D to 3D. The old SCUMM engine from
the previous games has been replaced with the new GRIME engine, seen before in
Lucasarts ghoulish adventure Grim Fandago. Monkey Island looks damn good in 3D, and any
fans of the series worried that it would affect the game can rest assured - it looks much
better and plays as good as it always has. Guybrush and friends wander around dozens of
beautifully rendered backgrounds which positively burst with colour - it really does look
Escape From Monkey Island also has much more puzzles to tax the old
grey matter, ranging from fairly easy to mid-bogglingly tricky. They will test even the
most seasoned Monkey Island veteran. If you are familiar with the Monkey Island games then
you will recognise a lot of the original characters popping up now and again e.g. Stan the
used boat salesman has now risen the ranks and become...an estate agent. There are lots of
in-jokes for fans of the previous adventures to enjoy.
Escape From Monkey Island is everything you could have hoped for. It
continues the series in fine style with its polished graphics engine, great sense of
humour and comedy characters. To top it all off, Lucasarts are promising more monkeys in
this game than there were in the previous three games combined. How could a game with that
many monkeys possibly fail?
Press Release for
"Escape from Monkey Island"
SHIVER ME TIMBERS AND POKE
ME OTHER EYE OUT! TIS TIME TO ESCAPE FROM MONKEY ISLAND, THE FOURTH PIRATEY
ADVENTURE FROM THE SWASHBUCKLERS AT LUCASARTS
Internationally-Acclaimed Adventure Series Returns in 3D with Fresh
Jokes, Rotten Puns, the Ultimate Insult and More Monkeys Than Ever
SAN RAFAEL, Calif. -- April 26, 2000 -- A scurvy-inducing new
chapter in the legendary Monkey Island adventure series unfolds in rollicking 3D with
Escape from Monkey Island from LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC. Expected for release
in fall 2000 for PC, Escape from Monkey Island finds series hero, perennial pirate-wannabe
Guybrush Threepwood, returning to face sociopathic parrots, freakishly deformed
buccaneers, and an insult flinging original villain with a sinister agenda.
Escape from Monkey Island continues in the hilarious tradition of
its critically hailed and award-winning predecessors, The Secret of Monkey Island, Monkey
Island 2: Le Chucks Revenge, and The Curse of Monkey Island. Developed by the team
who created LucasArts irreverent classic Sam and Max Hit the Road, Escape features
an original cinematic story full of drama, intrigue and of course, side-splitting humor.
The game is highlighted by hundreds of challenging puzzles, set amidst dozens of rich and
brilliantly rendered backgrounds.
"The Monkey Island series of graphic adventures is one of
LucasArts strongest and most successful brands," says Tom Byron, product
marketing manager for LucasArts. "Escape from Monkey Island continues LucasArts
considerable adventure game legacy and honours a series that is among the most popular in
Escape from Monkey Island finds Guybrush and his new bride, Governor
Elaine Marley-Threepwood, returning to Melee Island from their honeymoon. They quickly
discover Elaine has been declared dead, the Governors mansion is scheduled for
demolition, and the slick, yet hauntingly familiar politician, Charles L. Charles, is
gunning for her job.
While Elaine scrambles to launch a reelection campaign, Guybrush is
dispatched on a seemingly trivial legal errand that catapults him into a maelstrom of
thievery, voodoo, and experimental prosthetic devices. Armed only with his sharp wit and
an uncanny ability to hold his breath for ten whole minutes, our hero navigates ever
deeper into a villainous scheme to wipe out the Tri-Island Area using the fearsome power
of the Ultimate Insult. Can Guybrush make the Caribbean safe for fun-loving, grog-swilling
pirates, or will the twin forces of heckfire and unbridled capitalism bring an end to the
So begins the next captivating chapter in the long-running Monkey
Island series. Buccaneers, hoist the yardarms, batten down the hatches, and let the
LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC is a leading international
developer and publisher of interactive entertainment software for a variety of computer
and console platforms. Based in San Rafael, Calif., as well as on the Internet at
www.lucasarts.com, LucasArts is one of five companies in the Lucas group which include
Lucasfilm Ltd., Lucas Digital Ltd. LLC, Lucas Licensing Ltd., and Lucas Learning Ltd.
Lucasfilm is one of the leading film and entertainment companies in the world.
Lucasfilms businesses include George Lucas film and television production and
distribution activities as well as the business activities of the THX Group. Lucas
Digital, which consists of Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) and Skywalker Sound,
provides visual effects and audio post-production services to the entertainment industry.
Lucas Licensing is responsible for the merchandising of all Lucasfilms film and
television properties. Lucas Learning creates engaging interactive entertainment products
that provide learning opportunities through exploration and discovery.
Escape From Monkey Island begins shortly after the end of the last
game, with Guybrush Threepwood and his bride Elaine Marley-Threepwood, the governor of
Mêlée Island, returning from their honeymoon. Once they arrive home they find that
Elaine has been declared dead and the governor's mansion is about to be demolished. A
shady character by the name of Charles L. Charles is running for governor, and many of the
island's pirates have disappeared. While Elaine sets out to prove that she is very much
alive, Guybrush is faced with the task of stopping the mansion's destruction and figuring
out what evil scheme is afoot.
As Guybrush, you journey around the Caribbean, wandering through
Mêlée Island, Lucre Island, Jambalaya Island, Knuttin Atoll, and, of course, Monkey
Island. For Guybrush, who just may be the world's wittiest pirate, each area presents a
variety of challenges: on Mêlée Island, you are out to assemble a crew and leave the
island; on Lucre Island, you have to clear your name after you are accused of a bank
robbery; on Jambalaya Island and Knuttin Atoll, you are to piece together The Ultimate
Insult; and once you're on Monkey Island, the point, of course, is to escape. Along the
way you will have to solve many puzzles, compete in insult contests, and figure out why
Charles L. Charles looks so familiar.
Escape From Monkey Island uses an updated version of Grim Fandango's
interface. Walking from setting to setting, you manoeuvre Guybrush and interact with
characters and objects. The interface for dialogue is quite simple: you select from a
variety of things to say when conversing with people, and it's easy to navigate
conversation paths within the game. When you come upon an object, you can look at it, pick
it up, use it, or combine it with something else in your inventory, and a host of options
pop up on the screen. When Guybrush comes into a setting, his head will sway towards an
object or person you should interact with, which takes a little bit of the guesswork out
of the game's many tasks. However, there is no mouse support, and it's difficult at times
to navigate each scene using the cursor keys; occasionally Guybrush will hit an invisible
obstacle and circle around it, altering his direction. For the most part, though, the game
is fairly straightforward, and it isn't difficult to get Guybrush to where he needs to go
next or access the inventory once you get used to the controls.
Like any good adventure game, this latest Monkey Island outing
requires you to think. How do you stop the catapult from destroying your mansion? How do
you find a way to propel yourself into the upper window of the bank? How do you convince
three judges in a diving competition to give you a good score while sabotaging your
opponent? How will you ever sneak your souvenir Monkey Mug out of Planet Threepwood
without getting caught? Is it possible to master the art of Monkey Combat? And these are
just a few of the game's dozens of puzzles, and many of them are downright hard. In an
attempt to help those without the patience to complete the more challenging tasks,
LucasArts has included a walkthrough strategy guide with the game--you don't have to open
it, but it is incredibly helpful at times. What is great about Escape From Monkey Island,
however, is that only part of the joy of playing it is in the challenge; while the puzzles
will make you think, and many of them may stump you at times, there is still a lot to
explore on each island, some of which is not integral to completing the game.
As you would expect from previous instalments in the series, Escape
From Monkey Island is laugh-out-loud funny. It's not merely amusing, witty, or clever--it
is hilarious. The dialogue is excellent, featuring an array of memorable voices for each
character, and there are hundreds of jokes within the game, ranging from obvious settings
like Planet Threepwood, StarBuccaneers, and the Micro-Groggery on Jambalaya Island (where
all the pirates have been removed and everything is "family-friendly") to subtle
gags, which include the SCUMM bar, a host of characters from past games, and the odd
appearance of LucasArts merchandise. To say any more would ruin a good portion of the
game's humour, but even nonadventure gamers will take a liking to this game if they spend
a half hour with it, and they will find themselves addicted if they spend more. (And
honestly, how can you not love the Reform School for Pirates on Knuttin Atoll, with a
pirate-hating school marm voiced by Edie McClurg, from Ferris Bueller's Day Off and The
Escape From Monkey Island's graphics are a step up for adventure
games as a whole. The earliest adventure games featured pixelated graphics, later entries
went for a more animated look, and Escape From Monkey Island features 3D graphics,
rendered nicely against 2D, painted backdrops. While the game looks sophisticated and the
animation is fairly smooth, there are minor jagged lines here and there--but overall, it's
no big deal. There is a fixed camera on every scene, and Guybrush moves not only left and
right, but also into the foreground and background. Angles change during some settings,
and the game has a definite storybook feel. The music also matches the game's playful
mood, with a nice Caribbean-flavored soundtrack. This presentation works, and though it
lacks the eye-popping amazement of a title like Rune, it has more wit, charm, and raw
likability than almost any other game released in the past five years.
Some folks, especially those unfamiliar with graphical adventures,
may not understand the appeal of Escape From Monkey Island at first. If you've never spent
weeks or months playing an adventure game, where being stumped and spending hours
exploring the scenery was as much fun as the payoff, it's hard to grasp what makes this
style of gameplay so compelling. But if you consider yourself a hard-core gamer,
well-versed in the history of what makes computer gaming so great, it is impossible to
overlook this title's considerable merit. Fans of any genre will love this game if they
sit down and play it, and it offers more in the way of engrossing, non-twitch fun than any
other game on the market. Escape From Monkey Island not only perfects the graphical
adventure, it takes it forward.
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