The Secret of Monkey Island
I rate pirates
Antique Code Show The Secret of Monkey Island ignites the urge to buckle swashes in everyone and 20 years on from its debut everyone I know still loves this game.
She goes sixty miles to the galleon
Especially my friend Pippa, who manages to constantly find parallels between our pop punk adventures and Guybrush Threepwood's buccaneering quests. Maybe this has something to do with the game's awesome soundtrack - a tip of the (tricorn) hat goes to composer Michael Land.
'Why, how many have you nice young man, you?'
To me, Monkey Island represents more than a game I enjoyed back in the day. It’s the first game that really sucked me in. The first game that transported me to another realm, that took me on an adventure that innumerable other games in the same genre would try in vain to imitate, but never quite equal.
OK, but you'll need to change your name. How about 'Seaman Staines'?
The best thing about Monkey Island is its combination of wonderfully droll pirate storyline and gratifyingly Machiavellian puzzles. It was the fifth game to use the SCUMM (Script Creation Utility for Maniac Mansion) gaming interface: choose a verb and an object to couple it with, and the game would provide a response.
Is that The Black Pig out there?
I play aspiring pirate Guybrush Threepwood, a gullible young dude with a thirst for adventure and a complete lack of awareness of what lies ahead. There’s no looking back as I quest to fulfill my misbegotten destiny and solve the strange secret that lies in at the heart of Mêlée Island, the pirate-infested hub of Monkey Island.
Isn't this street a little clean for the 18th Century?
At a local tavern, a trio of pirate leaders gives me three trials to complete in order to be considered a proper pirate. The challenges test my pirating abilities in sword fighting - peppered with insults and witty comebacks, scripted by sci-fi scribe Orson Scott Card - looting and treasure hunting.
Next page: Shiver me timbers
I'm selling these fine leather jackets
It's worth mentioning that the special editions that have been recently released do NOT contain all of the sequels, only the first two games (and if you count the Tales Of Monkey Island episodes, we're lucky enough to have had four sequels now :) ).
It's also worth mentioning the single biggest change to the Special Edition games too, the fact that they've had vocals added! Dominic Armato and the rest of the crew were brought in to voice them retrospectively.
The first two are still two of the best games ever made. The third is very good, but I prefer not to think about the fourth :( Monkey Kombat especially ruined that game for me.
Oh and while you can't die as a result of your course of actions, you can die as a result of your *inaction*. Ten minutes is a long time to hold your breath, but not always long enough... ;)
Look behind you, a three-headed monkey!
This game really was my favorite as a child and still remains playable today. I know most of the story off the top of my head and yet it still manages to make me laugh.
Getting captured repeatedly by the cannibals remains, for me, one of the best sequences of laughs ever.
"I'm not sure which is more confusing, how you keep escaping, or why you keep coming back"
I could handle the slow pace and adventure puzzles, and the design is great.
What I could never stand is the way the text is delivered at a speed for someone with a reading age of about 6 (even if you can speed it up by repeated key-bashing, it becomes tiresome). When you have to click on half-a-dozen different characters to find the one who furthers the plot, and the others just repeat the same 'witty' conversation between themselves, whichever one you click on, over and over, I just give up.
But what about...
How could you forget the insult sword fighting?
Q: People fall at my feet when they see me coming.
A: Even BEFORE they smell your breath?
I've spoken with apes more polite then you!
I remember many a late night stuffing disk after disk into my Amiga (until I got that massive 20mb hdd). This game was (and still is) the best adventure game ever made. Better than Day Of The Tentacle, better than Simon The Sorcerer and better than Flight Of The Amazon Queen.
My pal got the iPhone version with updated visuals, but he still reverted to the original graphics 'cos they're soooo much better. If you find the right SCUMMvm you can pretty much play this (and others) on any device. Sheer heaven.
"You make me want to puke!"
"You make me think somebody already did!"