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Retro Reviews Part One: The Secret of Monkey Island

by: Gustavo Lequerica-Calvo ; edited by: M.S. Smith ; updated: 5/25/2012 • Leave a comment

One of the classical video games of all times, that spawned three sequels over the years. In the first part we are introduced to pirate wannabe Guybrush Threepwood, who in his quest to become a mighty pirate ends in the middle of the strange secret that lyes in Melee Island.

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    The Amazing Secret of Monkey Island

    One of the best selling games for P.C. in the history; Monkey Island brings to us the misadventures of Guybrush Threepwood, at first a pirate wannabe and later a not so mighty pirate. The game was developed by Ron Gilbert after his fascination with pirates took a new level after visiting the famous ride at Disney World, Pirates of the Caribbean.

    The storyline of the game starts when Guybrush, a young guy who wants to become a pirate, arrives at Melee Island, the epicenter of every pirate in the world of Monkey Island, but his arrival is like an omen of problems, soon Guybrush finds himself between the secret of Melee Island and the strange connection that Melee have with a strange place called Monkey Island. The premise sounds fun as the game itself; many gamers have enjoyed this game over the two decades it has been on the market.

    One interesting thing about Monkey Island is the many pop culture references of the 80’s and the surreal jokes the game have within, citing the insert disk error that caused a mayhem with many players who didn’t understood the joke even that the set came with 4 to 8 floppy disks and the joke said a high number that was impossible that that disk came on the box set of Monkey Island. The most appealing aspect of this game is the script, and maybe now the pixilated graphics that gives nostalgia factor to the player because you don’t see those graphics these days; like I was saying the script is the appealing factor of this game, due it tells a story not in a romantic or bloody way, but in a funny way that many of us can relate to the clumsiness of Guybrush or the bossiness of Elaine Marley, is a game that appeals to a general public.

    It’s hard to see games like Monkey Island these days, much of what is in today’s market is basically composed on graphics just to sell, it’s really hard to see a game with a good storyline that can appeal to many focus group, it’s strange to think that with all the technological advances the essence of the devolving is almost on the brink of extinction, to tell a story is hardly seen these days, to tell a fantastic story with words and not violence, but I guess the general public wants to play a shooter game or pulverize his rival body with a laser gun, I am not going to cite examples because I am going to avoid a few problems.

    The game today is hard to find, even the last sequel is really rare, almost impossible to see in today’s market but is found on the internet in the LucasStore and with downloads that are free because many fans of the game, they don’t want that this classic jewel get lost in the annals of history, you can find the game in many sites such The Monkey Island SCUMM Bar or La Selva del Camaleon if you want to play the game in Spanish, also as these two sites there are plenty around the Internet and you can find the game in almost any language of the world and the best it can be played on really old computers because of the low graphical support the game have,

    As many games, Monkey Island was developed by the pop culture influence as I said previously it was inspired mostly on Pirates of The Caribbean and the Pirates movies had some minor influence of Monkey Island in terms of images that were taken from the games, such as the sword fighting insult that even is not the same as it shown on the first movie, you can clearly see that is similar as when Carla and Guybrush fight for the very first time.