Its Gonna Be a Monkey Summer!
Those who know me know this fact, The Secret of Monkey Island is the game I attribute to getting me into games. I remember playing the game on our old Tandy computer, floppy discs and paper anti-piracy wheel in hand. It may not be the prettiest game by today’s standards, but it made good use of the 256 colors it had. The game had great music, puzzles, and most important: a great sense of humor.
Well, you can only imagine my excitement to find that LucasArts is bringing the game to a new generation, slating the release of an enhanced remake of the influential game this Summer. Notable new features include upgraded graphics, an enhanced musical score, and a full voiceover. The voice of Guybrush will be by Dominic Armato, who first voiced Guybrush in the third game in the series, The Curse of Monkey Island. However, this is feature that makes me the most confident in the rerelease of this classic: the ability to switch back to the 256-color version! This guarantees they will be respectable to the original source material.
My excitement doesn’t stop here…oh no no no no! Also announced at E3 was a NEW game to the series! Telltale Games, who revived Sam & Max as an episodic series, is now working on Tales of Monkey Island. The game is stated to span 5 episodic chapters and takes place after the non-existent Monkey Island 5. Unlike the Sam & Max episodes, Tales of Monkey Island is said to not constantly reuse areas in each new chapter, making it a potentially large environment. Michael Land, the composer for all 4 previously release games is set to score this new game. Also returning is Dominic Armato and Alexandra Boyd voicing Guybrush Threepwood and Elaine Marley, respectively. Also a welcome addition is the design input by Ron Gilbert, the mastermind behind the first two Monkey Island games. The game is not going to be considered Monkey Island 5. The games lead designer, Dave Grossman stated that Monkey Island 5 needs to be “a blockbuster, epic 40-hour gigantic experience like the earlier games; what we’re doing instead is a Monkey Island series”
I’m glad to see the return of interest in this series. One can only hope that this will eventually lead to Ron Gilbert picking up the series again and finally telling us what the “Secret” of Monkey Island really is!