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Highs and lows of tales

posted by Friar on - last edited - Viewed by 262 users

So, now that it's all over, what would you consider the high points and low points of the season?

for me:
Highs
The Final Fight
The feast of the senses
The sword fights
The trial
The Plot
The dialogue
Possesing the voodoo lady
Insult face fighting(or whatever it was called)

Lows
The treasure hunt in chapter one. Everybody new what do within 3 seconds, but it was monotonous to actually do.
The wiiware version's quality

And that's pretty much it. What about you?

24 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • HIGHS

    Some secondary characters (Winslow, Anemone, Galeb...)

    Nice method of map introducton (flyover)

    A very brave decision to reweave the basic plot 'cycle' to introduce more tension.

    Island-hopping

    Splendid music (when not too compressed)

    Generally nice visuals

    A good attempt at back-story (Voodoo Lady, LeChuck...)

    Superb voice acting (especially Dominic)

    Whole idea of Voodoo possession/Crossroads/actual Vodoun references

    LOWS

    GAPING plot holes (alright, there'll be a second season, but still, two cut-scenes for a plot that convoluted... c'mon)

    Plot inconsistencies
    The ending decision to cancel all the plot changes (Guybrush gets his hand back, body recovered, everybody's happy... swell. Where is the price to pay?) Why didn't we end at the Crossroads? That'd be more mature storytelling.

    Uneven plot development (chapter 3 seemed like a way to prolong the plot, and chapter four really dragged the plot down at times) - way too many deaths cramped into the 4th chapter without foreshadowing, too bad for eve spread of plot/action balance (there should be more in the previous ones, 4th chapter was like a rapid jump, too rapid)

    Failure to bring closure of sorts - what about DeCava? Dead/alive? Did Elaine plan EVERYTHING? How did LeChuck get his hands on the diary?

    CHARACTER MODEL REUSE / MANY BORING SECONDARY CHARACTERS

    Guybrush's responses were skewed at times
    (was way too eager to accept VL is the baddie, no sign of sexual tension with Morgan - there should be some, being faithful is keeping your priorities in face of temptation, not being not conscious enough to recognize the temptation)

    That said... I still loved TALES :D

  • I think my only problems with Tales were, apart from techy issues (Wii!), the occasionally uneven pacing, due to the puzzle design, and the so-so backgrounds in TMI05. I loved the series as a whole. It's a fantastic addition to the canon.

  • Highs:
    The swordfight at episode 2's beginning
    Guybrush's hook
    Winslow's fascination with the map
    'Good guy' LeChuck and Guybrush working together in episode 2 and cracking jokes in episode 4
    The final conversation between Guybrush, the MerLeader, and Elaine
    The pirate faceoff
    Murray
    Posessing the Voodoo Lady
    The trial
    Poxed Elaine's entry and fight with Morgan
    LeChuck revealing the Voodoo Lady is evil
    The battle with DeSinge at the end of Chapter 4
    Morgan, DeSinge, and Guybrush's deaths
    The beginning of chapter 5
    The puzzle were you have to regain your body
    Winslow shooting Elaine's sword away
    The final battle against LeChuck

    Lows:
    The awful Demon LeChuck voice from chapter one
    The Flotsam jungle bits of chapter 1
    Nipperkin
    The way overdone reuse of models in episode 1 (In the other episodes they generally did a better job of masking it if they did it)

  • Highs:
    [LIST]
    [*]LeChuck really shines throughout TMI, both in his human and undead form. I really enjoyed seeing him portrayed as a scary, powerful and evil villain again, for the first time since MI2. If this was the last we saw of LeChuck, he got an excellent swansong.
    [*]The writing, while somewhat varying, was generally of a very high standard.
    [*]New characters like Morgan, DeCava, Winslow and Galeb were very well written and implemented.
    [*]The varied and imaginative locations made every episode feel fresh and different.
    [*]The excellent use of Murray in Chapter 3.
    [*]High-quality voice acting pretty much all around. Finally a voice actor for Stan that kinda fits!
    [/LIST]

    Lows:
    [LIST]
    [*]Some plot inconsitensies and logical inconsitensies, especially in the last chapter.
    [*]Puzzle design varied greatly.
    [*]I would have liked to see a more authentic looking pirate town, like Melée, Phatt or Puerto Pollo - one which actually feels like a town and not just a collection of houses.
    [*]Although sometimes concealed expertly, there were too many reused character models.
    [*]Some of the episodes were a bit buggy. I'm hoping some of these bugs will be fixed for the DVD-release.
    [/LIST]


    I'm sure I could think of more points to add to both sides of this, but overall I am very pleased with TMI.

  • Highs:
    [LIST]
    [*]Chapter 1 opening
    [*]DeSinge's lab puzzle, Chapter 1
    [*]Human Lechuck Puzzles, Chapter 2
    [*]Most of Chapter 3, especially Murray
    [*]Atmosphere in Chapter 4 (and return of Earl Boen)
    [*]Fight with Lechuck, chapter 5
    [*]Great voice acting in all episodes
    [/LIST]

    Lows:
    [LIST]
    [*]Synth music
    [*]Generic characters on Flotsam
    [*]Maze puzzles in Chapter 1
    [*]Merfolk in Chapter 2
    [/LIST]

  • Highs

    -Good use of secondary characters (I really ended up caring for Morgan and Winston... which was incredibly unexpected)

    -Ambitious attempt at writing a "dramatic" adventure game. Previous Telltale games haven't really tried their hand at pathos (with the exception of Sam's personal Hell in Sam and Max 205). Tales jumps into the deep end of drama and really tries hard to deliver.

    -Consistent puzzles

    -Graphics and bright, colorful, and full of personality. Particular praise needs to be given for the land of the dead in the final chapter. It was evocative and incredibly oppressive at the same time.

    -Mostly consistent humor.

    -Great voice work.


    Lows

    -The animation capabilities are starting to show their limitations. Red vs. Blue has shown that, when dealing with comedy, people are willing to accept some stiff, puppet-like animations (not to impugn the work of Rooster Teeth since they put an immense amount of work into their films). Sam and Max benefited from this to some extent; sections that were animated in less-than-ideal fashion were given a pass because the writing was so causticly funny. But Tales of Monkey Island is trying to use its engine to communicate drama, and drama, by the very nature of the art form, is all about the interplay of body language and vocals. When the words don't quite match up with animations (like when the character model is awkwardly smiling when she should be depressed) it does damage to the scene. The animations work 8 out of 10 times, but it's a real shame when they fail, especially since the failures occur during some of the more pivotal emotional scenes. If Telltale wishes to continue working towards writing stories with more pathos (and I hope they do) they should put a larger investment into their animation department and make sure that they can effectively communicate the scene both vocally and visually. The team is almost there... but being so close just makes some of the truly almost-awesome scenes kind of sad.

    -An uneven score that functions well to build mood, but fails to adequately "punch up" the action scenes. I played through the ending several times and I've figured out why the impact is somewhat lessened for me. The animations and blocking are great, but the score sounds utterly disinterested.



    In the end I still really liked Tales of Monkey Island, but I think it needs work. It's an ambitious title, but its own ambitious occasionally hangs around its neck like an albatross. Telltale is really reaching for the brass ring, and if they want to rise to that next echelon they're going to need to finally start doing some serious revisions to their "Telltale tool". Strict comedy can function with occasional animation issues, but drama is a whole different beast. I appreciate the ambition and wish them the best, but Tales shows that Telltale may have reached the extent of what they can do from a technical perspective, even if their writing is continuing to push them higher. Keep pushing yourselves, Telltale.


    PS: Sam and Max 3! YEAH!

  • @Gregory Hawke said: Highs

    -Good use of secondary characters (I really ended up caring for Morgan and Winston... which was incredibly unexpected)

    Zeddemore_01.jpg

  • Hahaha.

    Highs:
    - Monkey Island is back, a greeeeeeeeeeeat return that feels like old MI.
    - Great story, nice look and awesome sound.

    Lows:
    - Maybe too much cinematic scenes? Sometimes you do something that runs on a 'large' animation. That's not bad at all, but, for example, near the end I expected more 'playable' and 'explorable' stuff and a nice final animation. But it's not bad at all.
    - That, for now, there's no official spanish subtitles, and there's no plans for translating voices.

  • Highs...
    [list]
    [*] the return of Monkey Island and of course Dominic
    [*] superb story and fantastic cut scenes
    [*] click and drag (yes, I like it)
    [*] episode 4... the menu was classic Monkey Island puzzling
    [*] Pox infected pirates
    [*] Winslow and Morgan
    [*] The Voodoo Lady's shack
    [*] Murray was perfect
    [*] Seabiscuit!
    [*] Hook Hook Hook Hook Hook Hook Hook Hook [/list]

    Lows...
    [list]
    [*] Stan... he looked brilliant but his dialogue didn't seem right
    [*] The jungle in episode 1
    [*] Elaine was very very irritating (except when she was pox infected).
    [*] sometimes the game was a little easy, especially chapter 5
    [*] the lack of interaction options was disappointing. Guybrush's response to using the 'mouth' function from the verb coin in MI3 on things always resulted in hilarity. I like not knowing what can and can't be picked up.
    [*] There was no 'one hour later' etc... to show the passage of time (from what I can remember). A Monkey Island tradition.
    [*] Awww where's the hook gone?[/list]

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