Written by  :  Nathan Kovner (55)
Written on  :  Jan 11, 2000
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars

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The most memorable, humorous, goofy-as-hell adventure game you're likely to play in your short life.

The Good

The Secret of Monkey Island is just about the most hilarious game I've ever played. The reason? Ron Gilbert doesn't go for the obvious gags good for maybe a gut-chuckle. It's apparent he and the LucasArts team spent a lot of time working out the game's concept. You play a young, naive loser named Guybrush Threepwood who "wants to become a pirate!" I love the premise - Guybrush is a dweeb who dreams about becoming something he isn't - this is a great subtle swipe at adventure gaming itself. And pirating (not the SEA type) is a subject inherently rich in humor value - it's got peglegs, grog, and of course, monkeys!

The characters are some of the most memorable in gaming - who could forget Stan the used ship salesman or the cannibals trying to watch their fat intake? Guybrush himself is my favorite protagonist to grace the pc - his dialogue options are hilarious. Keep an eye out for when he mentions his special skill - it'll help you find an easter egg that breaks the golden rule of LucasArts adventure games!

The insult driven swordfighting might be reason enough alone to check this game out, but it's perfect writing, puzzles, and pleasing SCUMM VGA graphics and interface make it impossible to pass up.

The Bad

It's difficult to find anything wrong with The Secret of Monkey Island. Hard core adventure gamers may find the puzzles too easy, but it's likely they'd be having too much fun to notice.

The Bottom Line

The only thing keeping The Secret of Monkey Island from being my favorite game of all time is that I really don't like adventure games all that much! In fact, I'd recommend it to someone who's trying to get a reluctant spouse, friend, or newborn to get into computer games. It was my first pc game - and look what happened to me!