A playthrough of LucasArts' 2009 remake of a seminal 1990 PC graphic adventure, The Secret of Monkey Island Special Edition.
For a playthrough of the CD rerelease of the original game, see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZ8FBpIsmv0
The original The Secret of Monkey Island is among my all-time favorite games regardless of platformer. The humor is an incredibly unique and special brand - and just about always pitch-perfect, the overall writing is of incredible quality, the soundtrack is one of the most memorable in any of its renditions (from PC Speaker, Adlib, and MT32, all the way up to the new orchestrations present in this rermake), and the early version managed to hold a whole lot of charm in its fairly simplistic graphic style (it was, after all, released originally in 1990, and it did come natively in both VGA and EGA).
Unfortunately, I can't rally the same way behind this remake. The voice acting is fantastic and carries the humor unusually well for such a long game, and it features the Guybrush's voice actor from The Curse of Monkey Island, the music remix has to be heard, and the graphics.... they really don't do the game justice. I can certainly appreciate the apparent time and effort that went into the HD facelift, but the style never feels right. It might be unfair to judge it because it didn't match what I'd imagined over the 20 years I'd played the game, but what was wrong with Curse's fantastic cell-animation style art? Why change the 2D art style yet again? I think that it's not just nostalgia though - I really found the character art almost offensively opposed to my tastes. The backgrounds look fantastic, but the characters really pulled me out of the game. I couldn't engage with these updated designs, and for me personally, the game suffered horribly as a result. The other issue I had was with the mouse controls. The menu options are a huge annoyance, requiring you to click well below the option you want for it to register, the inventory interface is obnoxious (to combine two items, you have to tell it to use and item, the inventory box automatically closes, then you have to open it again and then click on the other item, except any click beside those resets the cursor by deselecting the original item), and the lack of any verbs on the screen makes using the mouse wheel a complete chore as the way to select your action, leaving not much option but to use the several keyboard commands to speed things up. It's really unnecessarily unintuitive and frustrating.
It's Monkey Island, and I love it's soul. But, this version's graphics and control issues make it a bit of a grenade. Hopefully you avoided it, but if not, throw it back and demand the original. You'll have a much better time.
No cheats were used during the recording of this video.
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