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Why Tales is my second favorite Monkey Island game

posted by AdventureGamer on - last edited - Viewed by 733 users

Warning: This review my cause spoilers. Those who haven't played Tales are encouraged not to read. This is for those who have played and beaten it. I don't want to spoil the games for those who haven't played them. You have been warned. Now, without further ado, here is my summary of why Tales is my second favorite Monkey Island game.....

First off, nothing can beat Monkey Island 3, or Curse of Monkey Island, whatever you want to call it. However Tales is my second favorite. Of course, I love all the Monkey Island games. Here is a list of reasons why I love Tales.

1. New memorable characters: Tales introduces two new intriguing characters, Morgan La Fey and Winslow. I love how Morgan, the pirate hunter, has a love for Guybrush, bordering on what appears to be a crush, but also has a job to do. It adds for some interesting dimensions. The witty banter between her and Guybrush made me laugh as well, along with the unusual situations the two of them got into. As for Winslow, who could not like Winslow. An older man, who loses his ship to Guybrush, getting injured doing so, but has a jolly attitude about it. This happy attitude brings to memory the song in "Monty Python's Life of Brian," "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life." Not only that, but he's loyal to Guybrush unlike most of his previous crew. I do hope that when they make a sequel that they bring Winslow and Morgan back into it. I could see Winslow being a good companion to Guybrush.

2. Old memorable characters: I won't harp on Elaine. Everyone knows how important she is. But I will take some time to talk about Stan, and, most of all, Murray. It was good to have Stan back. The sequence between him and Guybrush in the courtroom as well as Stan milking the trail through merchandise was great. Let's not forget our lovable talking demonic skull, Murray. He was in top notch form in this game. The little jaked-up things he did to make Threepwood's laugh miserable, such as trying to get into the Brotherhood, made me laugh out loud.

3. Great storyline plus twists and turns: A pox covered Caribbean and a supposedly reformed LeChuck, plus a darker side to the Voodoo lady, helped take the game into new directions. For a while I was wondering if LeChuck really was reformed, until he stabbed Guybrush. Nonetheless, before that it was interesting to see LeChuck in human form.

4. Great situations: Wow! The courtroom scene was incredible. The ways Guybrush proved his innocence were just classic. Being stuck inside the giant manatee was wonderful. But one of my favorite parts was Guybrush's death. Guybrush dead! Who would have thought? It was interesting, and really cool, seeing him in the spirit world of pirates.

5. An excellent secondary villain: Largo was decent in Monkey Island 2. Governor Phatt was pretty good. But Marque De Singe was just amazing. I honestly hope we see more of this mad scientist later on.

6. Great dialogue and humor: I love it when Guybrush saves the merfolk and asks if he can have a cookie. I love it when Guybrush calls Doro, Doro the Explorer, and I love how he gets a rubber mast from a rubber tree, (a nod to Monkey Island 1) to repel a cannonball. There is just so much great humor in this game.

Of course, the game isn't perfect. There were some glitches in it, but it's forgivable. And it doesn't beat MI3 for best MI game, but it is the second best, in my mind. All that said, every MI game is gold or silver. They are all excellent.

10 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • tales is my favourite monkey island game and also the first one i played (thanks telltale for putting sam and max season 3 on the playstation store which after i played a demo i wanted to buy it which i did and then got monkey island) and curse is my second favourite

  • @AdventureGamer said: 5. An excellent secondary villain: Largo was decent in Monkey Island 2. Governor Phatt was pretty good. But Marque De Singe was just amazing. I honestly hope we see more of this mad scientist later on.

    I think De Singe was the most entertaining supporting character Telltale has ever created. Everything about him was exquisitely comical.

    Speaking of how Tales ranks among the MI games, I wonder that there hasn't been any comment here about its omission from this list?

  • Tales is a really great addition. Getting to be part of the speculation and collaboration on these boards will always be one of the greatest video game related experiences I have ever had.... ironically these boards also served as my favorite hotspot for the Lucasarts Monkey Island special editions.

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    Syd

    I might as well toss my review here instead of making a new thread.

    I personally enjoyed Tales quite a bit, but I had one complaint overall. This may just be because of my personal sense of humor, but the only real problem I had with Tales was that the jokes just didn't seem quite as funny as the jokes from the previous games. There were certainly plenty of parts that made me smile, or even got a small chuckle out of me, but it never got me to really laugh, compared to the previous games that had forced me to step away from the game to clean up my desk and keyboard after being caught off-guard by a great joke while sipping a drink. I think it may be because the older games had a larger writing team (I think. Correct me if I'm wrong) which would have made it easier for them to come up with good jokes and fine-tune the humor.

    Then again, like I said, I could be the weird one here with the odd sense of humor. What's funny and what's not is pretty subjective. Overall, the humor was still pretty good, and despite the amount I wrote about it, it's a pretty small complaint.

    I found the puzzles to be a little wonky from time to time but I didn't think that was a big deal overall. The thing I really loved about Tales, though, was the plot, as well as the supporting cast (though I think the supporting cast started off a bit weak and only really became interesting about half-way through, but I won't hold that against Telltale since they were probably more focused on re-establishing the central characters early on). The nature of LeChuck's betrayal caught me a bit off-guard (I expected him to turn on Guybrush eventually but I didn't expect THAT), the reveal involving the voodoo lady was quite interesting, and I welcomed the darker shift in tone near the end. I felt that the finale had a lot of punch since it seemed like so much more than ever before was at stake.

    Overall, I really enjoyed Tales, and I hope that someday Telltale can get the license again so they can continue from the sequel hook they left after the credits.

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    Syd

    @jawaj said: Tales was well...alright but not anywhere near as good as the other games. Even Escape had harder, more challenging puzzles. The humor in tales is also dramatically less then in the others

    I wasn't let down by the difficulty since I didn't expect much in the way of difficulty in the first place. Telltale's games tend to be considerably easier than the older adventure games of ages past, and there's also this quote from the FAQ for the game:

    Tales of Monkey Island is more streamlined than the adventure games you may remember from the 1990s, with more accessible, less frustrating gameplay that stays out of the way so you can enjoy the story.

    I pretty much agree with you on the humor though.

  • I would say it is my third favorite of the series but considering how much the series meant to me as a kid, that is fairly significant. The TT devs really did a fantastic job of creating the old school feel with a lot of good modern day touches. I hope they make another game in the future.

  • @jawaj said: Tales was well...alright but not anywhere near as good as the other games. Even Escape had harder, more challenging puzzles. The humor in tales is also dramatically less then in the others

    The problem with the puzzles in the earlier games was that a lot of them were obscure and nonsensical, lacking in logic. Of course, Tales had a few of those moments, but not to the extent that the previous ones did. In other words, I like a lot of the puzzles in Tales better.

    Now, I feel that Curse had the best humor of all the MI games. Curse made me burst out laughing, whereas Tales made me, except for a few laugh out loud scenes, chuckle. That's partly why Tales is my second favorite, rather than my first.

  • On the topic of secondary villains.. I really didn't see Governor Phatt as a secondary villain. He was just this guy, you know? He had little to do with the game after the one scene he's in. Largo on the other hand is there the entire first act, and he continues to make minor appearances. He may not be on par with LeChuck, but he certainly fit the role nicely. I also wholeheartedly agree that DeSinge was a great villain, and until you learn the truth it's easy to see him as being the main one, too.

    One of the reasons I greatly enjoyed Tales more than other games in the series was because there wasn't as much "Monkey Island Logic" or blind leaps involved with some of the puzzles. Granted it isn't as bad as some of Sierra's games, but the second game in particular just drove me nuts. It wasn't even really the puzzles didn't make sense, it was just not stuff you'd think to try, or in a few situations I'd not realize I could pick-up something cause my mouse never touched the handful of pixels required to notice it.

    Curse is still probably my favourite, but Tales would definitely be my second favourite.

  • @jawaj said: Tales just didn't feel like a monkey island game to me in all honesty. I think of it as the equivalent to the star wars prequels to the original trilogy

    That's way to harsh on TMI. I myself love the game and it felt so great playing a new MI story after all those years.

  • Except unlike the prequel films, Tales didn't introduce shallow characters (or empty characters, in the case of Darth Maul), it didn't retcon the crap out of established information from previous games, it didn't split the fanbase down the middle, it didn't spawn an endless tirade of spin-offs, weird books, an animated series which wasn't necessary.. etc.

    Tales felt like a natural next part of the series. We know Guybrush and Elaine went off to adventure at the end of the 4th game, and this just so happens to take place in another location. Hell, they even talk about an adventure that happened BEFORE this one. It also introduced a hell of a villain in DeSinge.

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