The Curse of Monkey Island
The Monkeys are Listening
The Curse of Monkey Island (CMI) seeks to appeal to younger gamers, who were not familiar with the first two games. It also seeks to maintain its established fanbase, who had been patiently waiting years for the next entry in the Monkey Island franchise.
CMI looks and sounds quite impressive for a late-1990s, point 'n click adventure game. I think that the redesign of the characters (generally) works nicely, and the voice talents are some of the best seen in an adventure game.
I suspect that someone thought about developing the Monkey Island franchise into an animated film.
The story picks up where the second game ended and by the end of the 2-CD game, Guybrush will interact with plenty of old and new friends.
The gameplay mechanics are responsive and easy to learn. It is nice to see the point and click gaming given an update. If you played Full Throttle, another Lucas Arts Adventure game, then you will easily pick up the controls for CMI.
The Curse of Monkey Island offers high seas, sword fighting, cursed diamond rings, vegetarian cannibals, and, mostly the sort of humor seen in the first two games.
The Curse of Monkey Island doesn't have much of the original Monkey Island designers involved. The creator of the series had left the company, and only one or two people involved with the previous games returns for this third entry in the Monkey Island series. It shows.
While I like the new character design, making the game look more like a cartoon does take away much of the "piratey" atmosphere seen in the first two games.
With few exceptions, the game never really captures an appropriate mood. The animation looks pretty, often stunning, but it doesn't really accomplish much in the atmosphere department.
Yes, the game is quite funny. The character design, game backgrounds and the like certainly help "sell" the on-screen comedy. However, when the game attempts to set a different tone/atmosphere, it is less successful.
The second criticism of the game is how unpolished the Carnival is. It is near the end of the game and fans were expecting to be able to actually explore the Carnival.
Instead, you get a few quick puzzles and lots of exposition. Apparently, the game was reaching its deadline, and stuff had to be cut (or left on the drawing room floor) near the end.
It's unfortunate because the rushed nature of the game is felt with the Carnival and the game's short ending.
The Bottom Line
The Curse of Monkey Island seeks to put the Monkey Island franchise into a Saturday Morning Cartoon. LucasArts hoped that the third entry in the Guybrush Threepwood Adventure game series would expand the fan base, while also keeping established fans satisfied. The Curse of Monkey Island is pretty looking, fun and funny. You cannot overlook the game's faults, but you also cannot resist the Curse of Monkey Island.
by Shamal Jifan (21) on March 22nd, 2017