Mr. Bill's Adventureland Review
Reviewed by Mr. Bill & Lela
It's been 6 long years since the last game in this series, Monkey Island 2, was published, and in that length of time our hero, Guybrush Threepwood, has grown up. No longer an adolescent wannabe pirate with a fake beard, he is now a tall and gangly young man and looks the part of a real (if still incompetent-looking) pirate. We're sure that he will be relieved to hear that since he's tried so hard to look like one in the past. Everyone wondered how the writers were going to bridge the gap between Monkey Island 2 and this game, especially since they were faced with two unusual problems: explaining the now famous ending of Monkey Island 2 and, since this is an ongoing saga, introducing a whole new generation of gamers, unfamiliar with the older games, to all of the beloved characters and memorable events that have gone before. We are happy to report that they have succeeded brilliantly, and the result is a wonderful game that is fun for both those who are new to the story and long-time fans.
As the story begins, we see Guybrush alone, adrift somewhere deep in the Caribbean near Monkey Island ..... in an amusement park bumper car with a half-eaten corn dog! He doesn't know how he got here: all he can remember about it is that he was at the 'Carnival of the Damned', but he isn't exactly sure what happened there. Convinced that he will soon die on the water, he is writing down his final thoughts about his previous adventures and bemoaning the loss of his true love when, suddenly, he hears cannon fire. He looks up startled to find that he has drifted right into the middle of a raging ocean battle between the demon pirate LeChuck and Elaine, his lost love! But unfortunately before he can join her, LeChuck captures him ..... and here we go again, off on another "rollicking tale of swashbuckling adventure with dull blade and rapier wit"!
We absolutely loved this game for many reasons, and we knew that we were going to from the get-go. After opening with that wonderful Monkey Island theme music (in stereo!) that always lifts our spirits (turn on your speakers and refresh to hear some now), it immediately blew us away with its fantastic cut scene animations and beautifully detailed graphics, all in full screen brilliant gorgeous color. And it's another great story, with the same wicked humor, about the eternal triangle between Guybrush, Elaine and Le Chuck, whom he just can't seem to get rid of and who perennially stands in the way of all of Guybrush's dreams (wonder why?).
All of our favorite characters are back (Stan the Salesman, the Voodoo Priestess, the Vegetarian Cannibals, little Wally: who now wants to be a pirate too and calls himself 'Bloodnose'), and there are many delightful new ones (including one that goes on our all-time favorite characters list: Murray, the talking disembodied skull, who wants so very much to be really EVIL!). We got to sharpen our insulting skills again and laughed ourselves silly about a certain snake. Our questions about the Big Whoop and Guybrush's family relationship to LeChuck were answered (although if you listen to the end credits all the way through, you may wonder again). And to top it all off, Guybrush finally gets the girl!
It is a 2D, 3rd person, point and click game with optional subtitles and 2 difficulty settings. There is one easy and fun arcade sequence where you battle other ships, but it can be bypassed if desired. You have multiple choice answers in conversations, and be sure to try them all: the voice acting is great and the comments are very funny. Try everything ..... there's only one place where you can "die" and, trust us, you don't want to miss it!
The only problem that we had was due to our own stupidity. Your inventory looks like the bottom of an open treasure chest. We had filled it up plus some, quit and restored, and then couldn't find all that we had collected. Thinking that it must be a 'bug', we contacted LucasArts: only to belatedly notice some new arrow-shaped 'hinges' on the back of the chest. Duh!!! If you click there you access the second layer in your inventory chest. Red-faced, we quickly apologized to the publishers!
It's a great game that can truly be enjoyed by the whole family and we highly recommend it!
Produced (1997) and published by LucasArts Entertainment Company.
Minimum System Requirements: PC Only!
PC: Pentium 90 MHz Processor; Windows 95; 16 MB RAM; 4X CD-ROM Drive; PCI Graphics Card; 100% Windows 95 Compatible 16 Bit Sound Card; 2 MB of Free Hard Drive Space (Additional 20 MB for Multiple Saved Games); Keyboard; Mouse
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