on 22 April 2011
If you've never played a Monkey Island game, why not? Well actually its probably because your 14 years old and have been brought up on endless COD releases, but I'm here to tell you if you fancy something a bit different, something that will make you think and have you howling with laughter then look no further than the legendary Monkey Island Series. (This franchise is over 20 years old now thats how endearing this series is!)
Many of the original designers of the initial Secret of Monkey Island have collaborated on these new Tales of Monkey Island including the man who conceived it all, Ron Gilbert and I have to say it really shows, if you like me thought that Escape from Monkey Island was a bit disappointing then you will be very surprised about how good Tales is although the game is yet 3D again when many of the complaints about Escape from Monkey Island centred upon this issue I feel the pseudo point and click scheme works quite well (you move Guybrush with the arrow keys and click on objects with the mouse). TMI (Tales of Monkey Island) was originally released as episodic monthly downloadable installments in 2009 and upon hearing about its release I excitedly signed up in time for release of the first chapter 'Launch of The Screaming Narwhal' and enjoyed every minute of it, although the depth of the characters in this first episode was a little thin on the ground Telltale games had seemingly listened to their fans on their forums and improved the supporting characters for the following chapters and it is evident as the final chapter of the game comes together, the art direction, the settings, the clever puzzles and the overall atmosphere feels highly polished. It feels like I am 15 years old again, gripped by the hapless Guybrush (wonderfully reprised by Dominic Armato) in his quest to foil LeChuck's plans once and for all, those who enjoyed Curse of Monkey Island in particular will adore this game. Highly recommended
on 5 August 2011
I just finished playing this game a few days ago. I really enjoyed it and highly recommend it. It has that warmth, charm and humour that made Monkey Island 1&2 so special. My girlfriend does not normally enjoy computer games, but she played the entire game with me. Voluntarily. A couple of things to be aware of:
Difficulty and Length:
The game consists of 5 episodes. I think each episode took me about 4 to 7 hours to complete. The game felt significantly easier than, say, Monkey Island 2. This is mainly because at most time you can only access a handful of different localities. There were only three or so occasions in the whole game when it felt like I was stuck and didn't know what to try next. On one of those occasions I used google, the other times I eventually figured it out. Guybrush, your character, will also give you hints if you don't make progress for a while. The frequency of these hints can be changed or they can be switched off altogether. Whilst the difficulty level might not please some hardcore adventure fans I figured that being stuck is ultimately not what is so enjoyable about these games.
3D and controls:
You move Guybrush around in the 3D world with the WASD keys and interact with stuff via mouse-click. This is functional enough, but more cumbersome than the usual control systems for 2D adventure games. This is when you might ask yourself, like I did, why they made a classical point and click adventure in 3D anyway. Eventually I realised that the 3D does allow for interesting, movie-like camera angles during dialogues and cut scenes, which is nice. The controls continue to be not great but you get used to them and they don't bother you that much.
on 6 October 2011
Along with the 'The Secret of Monkey Island - Special Edition' back in 2009, the announcement that a new Monkey Island game was in the works was some of the most exciting news in a long time for me and so many others. And not just in the world of adventure games either, but gaming in general. And now, at long last, the whole Tales of Monkey Island series has been released in retail stores in this great collection!
This may not be the best, but it's still a mighty (pirate) fine edition to the series and certainly beats 'Escape from Monkey Island', in my opinion. The graphics may not be 'cutting edge' or amazing by any means, though they're still pretty good and appropriately cartoony, which suits the style of the characters and gameworld to a T. Character's faces are also very expressive and varied, too. One criticism though is that certain character models are re-used a bit often and therefore look samey.
The story is typical Monkey Island. No matter how ludicrous the story seems in places, none of it feels out of place nor fails to be entertaining thanks to the large cast of wacky and likable characters (new and old), the dialogue, the humor, and the plot twists. I should say, however, that I wasn't particularly satisfied with the ending, or should I say, the final revelation(s).
Puzzles are generally good and varied; though at times they can feel a bit too easy. Thankfully the difficulty increases somewhat as the series progresses. If at any time you do get stuck there is a hint system that can be increased/decreased from the menu.
Every other aspect is great - Michael Land's music score, the voice acting (thanks to the original cast), the sound effects, the fact that each episode is a self-contained chapter that's part of the overarching story, each chapter ends on an appropriate cliffhanger making you want to find out what happens next (just like in a good TV show)... etc.
One thing that was a poor decision, and will most likely be an annoyance for many, is Telltale's new 'click and drag' control scheme. Instead of pointing and clicking where you want Guybrush to go, you have to hold the left mouse button down and drag the mouse around in the direction you want to go. It does feel cumbersome at first and there will be plenty of times where you may accidentally move Guybrush in the wrong direction. Thankfully there is always the option to play with both the mouse and keyboard.
As for this particular release/collection - this is what the Monkey Island Special Edition Collection should have been!
The DVD case is inside a nifty cardboard slipcase, whereby the front cover opens revealing a few screenshots and three mini reviews, the games can be played straight off the hard drive; though the disc will need to be in the drive if you want to access the special features, the special features include wallpapers, avatars and gallery with screenshots and concept art, Earl Boen now voices the zombie LeChuck throughout the whole game, audio compression, which was present in the download versions, has been done away with, and what was most surprising to me, though it could be my drivers, is the game seems much better optimized! I swear that's the case... I'm now able to play the games with all the settings maxed out at the highest resolution my monitor supports and the games run at 50-60 FPS!! Whenever I played the beginning of the download version of episode 1 maxed out, the lowest it would run was around 30-35 FPS!
Either way, if you're looking at buying Tales of Monkey Island then this release is highly recommended!
on 30 May 2011
I have been a fan of the monkey island series since I played the original game many years ago. I was thrilled to hear a 5th episode had been release and I certainly was not disappointed. This game has a great story line and anyone can play it whether you have played the earlier games or not. If you played the earlier games you will find a lot of familiar characters making an appearance. The graphics are good and the game play work well too. However, the episodes themselves do not really form games in themselves because they are not that long. Although together they make up quite a long monkey island game. If you buy this game make sure you play each episode in order or you will not have half as much fun.
I really hope someone makes another Monkey Island game because I have not had my fix yet. Buy this game you will not be disappointed.
on 25 January 2014
For me, this series of games felt so detached, and so lacking the qualities that made the original few Monkey Island games classics.
By a different developer, Telltale Games seemed to completely miss why Monkey Island was great. Instead of unique interesting characters in each scene, we have clones wearing different clothing but with the same voice. Instead of vast beautiful locations to explore, we're delivered small cumbersome environments with a distinct lack of charm.
Often the scenarios are weird and totally out of sync with the Monkey Island universe. Yes Monkey Island can often have bizarre features, but they're in context and kept somewhat believable. But Tales takes you into stomach of a giant leviathan, or a mermaid Island.
But it's the lack of genuinely funny moments, frustrating control system and erratic puzzles that ultimately turned me away from completing the series. I never got round to playing the last two games - although rumour has it they were vastly superior to the opening few chapters - I'd already bored and moved on.
This is not the future of point-and-click graphic adventure. Reviews of Double Fine's Broken Age, headed by one of the original Monkey Island designers, Tim Schafer, seem to indicate a more positive outlook. Double Fine have apparently spilled love and care into their product and it is said to shine through. Tales of Monkey Island feels like a product by numbers (literally).
As much as I love Monkey Island, I want them to leave it alone now. Telltales, have taken the franchise in a direction I felt genuinely uncomfortable about.
on 6 April 2012
In the interest of full disclosure, I dove into this game ready to love it, as I grew up with the series and had waited a decade for a follow-up to the largely disappointing last title. However, what I got out of it was more than the scratching of a ten-year itch. Much, much more.
As I played through all five chapters of Tales of Monkey Island, I was relieved to see that the series' humour was as wacky as ever, that all characters worth revisiting had either important roles or satisfying cameos, that the dialogue retained its characteristic snappiness, that the all-important voice cast was largely intact (delivering a terrific performance) and that the saga's continuity had been not only been respected but also built upon.
That alone would have made me content with my purchase, but that was not all, because upon finishing the final chapter, I realized that the series had... well, grown. While still essentially a humurous, swashbuckling adventure, there was now drama, an edge, and, shiver me timbers, honest-to-goodness pathos added to the mix. All with due moderation and hitting the right notes at the right times without overstaying their welcome, but they were there. And, jarring as the first "holy snap!" moment was for me, the game became all the better for it. The addition of a couple of new memorable characters was just the icing on top of the cake, and the twist on the series' mythology paved the road for a bold new direction which at least this particular fan will be waiting for with great anticipation.
The point & click genre has seen far better days and could be considered on life support nowadays, but it's still a perfectly valid method of interactive storytelling, as this game proves with the very innovative puzzles it peppers its narrative with. It's not a hard game by any means, but the days of gamers willing to spend hours upon hours of lateral thinking and pixel hunting just to make the story move forward are gone, and most of the game's puzzles are balanced just right to keep the story flowing. Come to think of it, the most 'puzzling' aspect of the game is its control scheme, which tried to be the best of both worlds but succeeds at neither. Telltale Games - the developer that licensed the game - may not have the deep pockets of an AAA studio, and that shows in the overall graphic presentation, the rather bland UI and a somewhat rushed final scene, the final cliffhanger nonwithstanding, but through graft and creativity they managed to make the most with what they had.
All in all, Tales of Monkey Island is an excellent adventure game and that rarest of beasts among the electronic entertainment industry: The one that genuinely has the ability to make you smile. Naturally, those familiar with the series will derive the most from it, as the myriad of references will be lost on those who aren't, but with the multi-platform availability of the first two titles (which have recently been remastered, no less), there's no excuse not to hop on board for the ride.
on 3 October 2012
You get so many games for the money here that it's one of the best value products you could buy. They need to be played in order as you follow Guybrush and his battles against Le Chuck - probably Lair of the Leviathan is the best. I found it quite tricky to complete but Guybrush himself will give you a clue if you get stuck for too long, so listen to everything he says! One minor drawback is the movement which can be either keyboard or mouse. I eventually gave up on the mouse and used the arrow keys. You do get used to it but it is always slightly irritating. The characters are all great fun and there's the usual Monkey Island humour which makes the game a pleasure to play.
on 1 July 2015
Case was a little different but that is no problem, i got this as a birthday/farthersday gift for my dad, he was telling my partner about how he played it with his mate in his younger days and how much he loved it so we just had to get him it. He loved it, iv never seen jim so pleased to open a gift. Hes playing it now and lovwing it!! Came really quickly seeing as it was coming from germany. Would defo buy again. Fantstic
on 20 July 2012
It doesn't take long from when you start the game, till you hear the first references and sarcastic sentences ! This game hides a lot of fun, from other things you probably have seen or heard of. And some of the things takes some time to crack. I can only recommend that you buy it
on 14 December 2011
I wanted something different from the serious fps shooters i was playing (dead space for example) and this was a welcome break.Just a fun relaxing game.
The puzzles may not be the hardest and some do boil down to trial and error, but this is so much fun i didn't care. Whilst playing i wasn't thinking 'this could be harder' i was just enjoying the witty script and story.
As for some reviews saying the controls are awkward i could not disagree more, you simply click and drag to move the character around the screen and all interactions can be done with the mouse.Inventory is simple with an area to drag and drop items into if you want to combine them.I am not sure what could have made it simpler/easier
overall: a fun, easy to control game i would recommend to any fan of point and click adventures