Back to Monkey Island review by

Monkey Island is back! Ron Gilbert is once again taking the reins of his cult saga and this year presenting Return to Monkey Island, a great sequel to the adventures of Guybrush Threepwood.

32 is the number of years separating the first episode of Monkey Island from the third episode that no one expected to watch; Not even his co-creator Ron Gilbert who has so shamelessly pleaded with him and for a decade cautious Disney to resell his beloved license to him. He was finally invited to develop a sequel to the second episode which he completed in a massive plot before saying goodbye to LucasArt, the high priest of adventure games out there with the claimed creative freedom: “”It was something very important to me: if I had to make this game, I had to do it as I wanted.Together with Dave Grossman, other author, and new kid: Rex Kroll (artistic director on the project), they created Return to Monkey Island.

Are there any spoilers in this test?

In the first paragraph of this quiz, you will find pointers about the framework of the first chapter and the characters present. However, no details were given regarding the scenario.

I’m Gibrush Thripwood, my honorary pirate!

I’m Gibrush Thripwood, my honorary pirate!‘: Since those first words Guybrush uttered in 1990, nothing has really changed. LeChuck remains the loyal antagonist, Ellen the loving wife, and the Isle of Mêlée is always the starting point for an saga filled with dozens of humor and anachronisms. Ottis, Stan, the cook, the witch Voodoo: They are also found in the village, which draws its colors directly from the painting The Secret of Monkey Island. Winks and implied references barely cover the four corners of the island to satisfy gamers who have starved for decades and earn them tender smiles.. Therefore, if the scrapbook provided in the list provides a bit of context for past adventures, it must be admitted that newcomers will feel a little confused. So it would be wise for them to complete the first two (excellent) matches before attacking this game.

The centerpiece of this beautiful painting of nostalgia is the music. The original three composers, Clint Bajakian, Michael Land and Peter McConnell, are back and are responsible for responding to Gilbert’s simple instructions:Make monkey island music (See our interview with Ron Gilbert.) A request so meticulously executed, that the melodies evoke good memories from yesteryear and bring the body to the story (also entertained by excellent dubbing). Most of them in this regard are played live by musicians or orchestras. Also, thankfully, the title doesn’t stay clogged up in the fan-service box and opens up halfway for a more authentic story. ; The balance is quite reasonable in fact. You’ll have your share of weird new characters to meet, enhanced by great writing with uncompromising and clever sense of humor. Return to Monkey Island is an exciting adventure with its silly situations and good pace from start to finish.

There is still one thing that has changed a lot: the artistic direction. In fact, it’s hard to legitimately go back to the ’90s pixel shows or embrace the Transformers look from the first episodes. The graphic evolution of Return to Monkey Island seems perfectly logical, even natural. Here some will learn about the unique touch of Rex Crowle, who is already working at Tearaway. The choice is clever, not only because it scores the license in a modern hub, but also because it respects all the same shimmering aura of the epic so well. So, of course, the change is so drastic that it wouldn’t be unanimous. Gilbert told us a few days before his release, “You can’t do something that everyone loves, it’s impossible.

Back to Monkey Island: After 30 years of waiting, what's the value of an adventure game monument?Back to Monkey Island: After 30 years of waiting, what's the value of an adventure game monument?

Point’n Click General Public

In addition to these images that have always been close to animation, there also appears to be a new parameter that crashes the game into a more family history: difficulty. In normal mode, the puzzles respond to a relatively novice audience and are overly basic for regular people in the genre, instead being invited to take the hard mode route. The latter is more generous in puzzles and thus is a reflection and represents a completely different experience that we can only recommend. The complexity of the puzzles follows a nice progression curve although it appears to be somewhat stagnant a bit less than what has been presented to us in the past. Finally, the player never feels trapped in block puzzles and is entitled to a very clever system of clues that runs in stages. : If that small tip isn’t enough for you, here’s a bigger one, and so on. Overall, the adventure has clear objectives, accomplished with story-rightly-present puzzles whose solutions make sense, even when serving moon missions (which we love): run a burp contest to win a blowfish, or find a dish recipe with “ingredients” .

Back to Monkey Island: After 30 years of waiting, what's the value of an adventure game monument?

The game also provides you with a classic point-and-click disaster: the unlikely combinations that must be made in your inventory before the right combination is found. Here you avoid lazy dialogues like “Ah… I don’t think it works” thanks to the cross symbol that tells you in advance whether or not one object can be combined with another. Also, the controls are simple, the player simply suffices with the pre-set actions intended for the left and right mouse clicks.. Note that the journey is quite enjoyable on the console, the developers have really taken care to deliver an excellent console experience; The character moves with the stick so that he easily interacts with his environment. A very pleasant surprise.

Back to Monkey Island: After 30 years of waiting, what's the value of an adventure game monument?

In this sense, comfort and the absence of frustration for the player is one of the priorities of this relaxing experience that frees itself from the tedious manipulations of the past. Ron Gilbert actually endorsed this necessity in his 1984 statement “Why Adventure Games Suck”: “The average American spends most of his days failing in the office, and the last thing he wants to do is go home and fail trying to relax and have fun.


strength point

  • Writing that hits the mark
  • Good balance between nostalgia and novelties
  • Great soundtrack
  • Art direction works very well
  • Puzzles with reasonable solutions
  • Good adventurous rhythm
  • Very comfortable experience and modern controls
  • Correct age (10 hours)
  • Very well adapted to the console

Weak points

  • Difficulty that may take some time to settle into

The graphic touch may have changed quite a bit (correctly), and the Monkey Island saga retains all its sparkling, sassy aura in this episode, especially thanks to the still clever writing and a really great soundtrack. Return to Monkey Island is a fresh and modern adventure that strikes a fine balance between nostalgia and modernity.


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