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Fourth Chapter,The Trial and Execution of Guybrush Threepwood


robearth
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Well.

I have to say... I'm not sure if this is entierly OKAY with me.

I mean.

This is dangerously close to absolutly ridiculous storytelling. I literally laughed out loud on the occasions that were supposed to be the most dramatic, because it just felt so wrong! So very, very, childishly predictable, and so very, very, non-monkey-island.

 

At the same time, I found myself intrigued by it! Giggeling and reluctant, it pulled into the story.

And since this isn't really a sequel in the monkey island series, (it's not "monkey island 5"); Do they even get to write the story this controvercial? I mean, not only do they gladly make changes in character-relations, but they also change parts of the past story of monkey island!

 

What I want to discuss is:

The story is "stepping out of line". Do you approve?

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Well.

 

And since this isn't really a sequel in the monkey island series, (it's not "monkey island 5"); Do they even get to write the story this controvercial? I mean, not only do they gladly make changes in character-relations, but they also change parts of the past story of monkey island!

 

What I want to discuss is:

The story is "stepping out of line". Do you approve?

 

It is Monkey Island 5. That was a huge misunderstanding based on Dave Grossman's comments that "this takes place after an unmade Monkey 5," meaning that it takes place some time after the fourth one and that Guybrush has had some unseen adventures.

 

Yes. Yes, they do.

 

Is the story stepping out of line? No. Do I approve of these changes? Yes. Most definitely.

 

This point, by the way - "not only do they gladly make changes in character-relations" - is...how do I put it? If character relations had never changed, Guybrush would still be stammering around Elaine, assuming he'd met her at all. I'm sure getting married counts as a "relationship change".

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It's impossible to argue with you since you haven't said WHAT is wrong with the story, what about it is non-monkey-island (I think most of us think that story wise it's the most monkey-islandy chapter yet) and what you found so controversial about the whole thing.

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Do they even get to write the story this controvercial? I mean, not only do they gladly make changes in character-relations, but they also change parts of the past story of monkey island!

 

I'm guessing it wouldn't be hard to make a side-story, which doesn't change the status quo in any way. However, the reason I like Tales' story so much is that the writers have balls to change things and at least create an illusion of progress, plot-wise.

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I'll clearify what I am refering to:

 

(spoiler)

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When guybrush finds Morgan "dead" in de singes laboratory he stares dramaticly into the nightsky through the open balcony door and says:

"de singe! >: ("

As if it was a childrens cartoon.

 

And in the end, guybrush "DIES". this is ridiculous because it is so enormously obvious that he doesn't die, since one doesn't kill off the main character, one episode before the ending. It is the oldest and worst "drama trick" in the book, and building a dramatic scene around it with flickering eyecamera and phrases like "uhhh...elaine.... kick his but for me", just makes it even worse.

 

Furthermore, I feel this is "non-monkey-island", because monkey island was never about dramatic cut-scenes with worn-out hollywood-phrases. It is about humour and sarcasm!

 

I'd like to point out that it's just the hollywood-story elements of the game I don't like. The rest of it is awesome. I guess we just have different opinions about this, where mine seems to be the controvercial one.

I'm a little bit surprised that nobody can relate to what I'm feeling... : /

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I agree that when it gets too serious it can come across as melodramatic - the early games weren't as serious as TMI in terms of what happens to the characters etc. However, I'd reserve your judgement until you've played the final episode - Guybrush died in CMI as well, remember, and that certainly felt like a 'Monkey Island moment' to me.

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In the MI2 ending there was a dramatic revelation that parodied Star Wars and after that pretty much everyone died (in a sense), yet people either liked this right away or stopped complaining about it years ago.

 

I think you're over-idealizing a game series that is connected to a Disneyland ride, robearth.

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I think that you'll be surprised to find that guybrush really is, quite quite dead when episode 5 rolls around. I mean, it makes sense: since when has being dead stopped anybody in the MI universe? And if ghosts, zombies and demons aren't enough, the beginning of chapter 1 has already established the possibility of bringing someone back to 'proper' life, in the form of what happened to LeChuck.

 

Also, don't you think that 'kick his butt for me' might be a reference to the fact that the final confrontation of all the monkey island games has always been named some variation of 'Guybrush Kicks Butt'?

 

On the other hand I -do- agree that the drama wasn't handled as well as it could have been. In my review I point out that those dramatic moments would have been better if they had flowed and developed more naturally from the gameplay rather than being boxed into small sections at the beginning and end of the chapter.

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I think that you'll be surprised to find that guybrush really is, quite quite dead when episode 5 rolls around. I mean, it makes sense: since when has being dead stopped anybody in the MI universe? And if ghosts, zombies and demons aren't enough, the beginning of chapter 1 has already established the possibility of bringing someone back to 'proper' life, in the form of what happened to LeChuck.

 

Yes, that is more or less exactly what I'm expecting. That's what I ment with it being predictible. It's so obvious that Guybrush is going to come back to life in the next episode, and that's why it felt silly that they made his deathscene so melo-dramatic.

 

Also, don't you think that 'kick his butt for me' might be a reference to the fact that the final confrontation of all the monkey island games has always been named some variation of 'Guybrush Kicks Butt'?

 

Ahh! I didn't get that one : ) But ofcourse it is a reference to that! That almost made up for that lousy line.

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Yes, that is more or less exactly what I'm expecting. That's what I ment with it being predictible. It's so obvious that Guybrush is going to come back to life in the next episode, and that's why it felt silly that they made his deathscene so melo-dramatic.

 

I don't follow you. How exactly is this a reason for not being melodramatic? It wasn't that melodramatic either - just had the characters react appropriately. Was Elaine supposed to say "I hate when it happens. Please don't take too long coming back to life, dear." ?

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yeah, something along those lines.

 

That would have been much worse. One of Telltale's problems, or challenges at least has been how to deal with more serious plot elements. Turning everything into a big joke and trivialising it is an easy way out. It's lazy writing and lacks much more imagination than what you are calling lacking in imagination.

 

While I agree, basically, that there are things they could have done better, dramatically (see my review) I absolutely applaud their effort to bring some seriousness to the plot. And besides, even with what we know, the death IS serious. After all, sure, LeChuck died but since then he's been through quite a lot! We've no idea what's going to happen to Guybrush after death, but I doubt his death will be without serious consequences.

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One of Telltale's problems, or challenges at least has been how to deal with more serious plot elements. Turning everything into a big joke and trivialising it is an easy way out.

 

That's very true.. I've rambled about this numerous times, and to me, TOMI is no exception from this problem. De Singe, for instance, is too much of a tastelessly-wacky-cartoonnetwork-character for me.

So I guess your right, I aswell should be encouraging Telltale for trying to put some serious plot in there for once, instead of criticise them for it.

 

It's just that.. Even if it's an attempt to write some good ol' adventure story. It's not getting to me, obviously. If the characters of Monkey Island are going to get serious repercussions and change. I wouldn't want it to be from this game.

Simply because I don't feel that strongly about it.

 

But since I'm only getting protests here. I'm going to replay it and see if I was just in a grumpy mood or something. Try to view it with different eyes.

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It's been years since game developers realized adventure games time had past, how many years from MI4 to date? Lucas Arts had no intentions to go back to MI, then they say: "Hey, Telltale, make this game so this oldies stop crying. Oh and let me see the final product, i must see and approve your work before and.. by the way: kill Guybrush at the end so we can finally put an end to it". And Telltale did it, a funny and beautiful looking game that off course is more realistic than its predecessors for a simple reason: it's 2009 now. Poxed Guybrush, Mutilated Guybrush and killed Guybrush, something totally different than MI's 1, 2, 3, 4.

 

It's quite obvious that Guybrush won't be human again, that's not what "Rise of the Pirate God" has to offer.. the chapter name says it all don't you think??

 

Guybrush will have the same fate than Superman, killed by it's own creator.. forever. And Telltale did it, clever move for Lucas Arts.

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It's been years since game developers realized adventure games time had past, how many years from MI4 to date? Lucas Arts had no intentions to go back to MI, then they say: "Hey, Telltale, make this game so this oldies stop crying. Oh and let me see the final product, i must see and approve your work before and.. by the way: kill Guybrush at the end so we can finally put an end to it". And Telltale did it, a funny and beautiful looking game that off course is more realistic than its predecessors for a simple reason: it's 2009 now. Poxed Guybrush, Mutilated Guybrush and killed Guybrush, something totally different than MI's 1, 2, 3, 4.

 

It's quite obvious that Guybrush won't be human again, that's not what "Rise of the Pirate God" has to offer.. the chapter name says it all don't you think??

 

Guybrush will have the same fate than Superman, killed by it's own creator.. forever. And Telltale did it, clever move for Lucas Arts.

 

 

No.

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Lucas Arts had no intentions to go back to MI...

 

Which is why they developed Special Edition in-house, right?

 

...then they say: "Hey, Telltale, make this game so this oldies stop crying.

 

That's simply untrue. TellTale approached LucasArts and licensed the rights to Monkey Island.

 

Oh and let me see the final product, i must see and approve your work before...by the way: kill Guybrush at the end so we can finally put an end to it".

 

Does that sound like a sane business decision to you? Why would they diminish the worth of their asset?

 

Guybrush will have the same fate than Superman, killed by it's own creator.. forever. And Telltale did it, clever move for Lucas Arts.

 

Wat?

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It's been years since game developers realized adventure games time had past, how many years from MI4 to date? Lucas Arts had no intentions to go back to MI, then they say: "Hey, Telltale, make this game so this oldies stop crying. Oh and let me see the final product, i must see and approve your work before and.. by the way: kill Guybrush at the end so we can finally put an end to it". And Telltale did it, a funny and beautiful looking game that off course is more realistic than its predecessors for a simple reason: it's 2009 now. Poxed Guybrush, Mutilated Guybrush and killed Guybrush, something totally different than MI's 1, 2, 3, 4.

 

It's quite obvious that Guybrush won't be human again, that's not what "Rise of the Pirate God" has to offer.. the chapter name says it all don't you think??

 

Guybrush will have the same fate than Superman, killed by it's own creator.. forever. And Telltale did it, clever move for Lucas Arts.

 

Absurd.

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That might be interesting to speculate but it's not necessary for criticism. A diving judge doesn't have to show the diver how to do it properly in order to pass his judgement. He just needs to identify what he thinks was wrong.

 

It was not my intention to imply that the answer to my question is necessary for criticizing the death scene. And most certainly I don't ask anyone to make a better Monkey Island game on their own (we have plenty of amateur sequels already). I just thought that perhaps ThuderPeel had some different idea of how the scene should be done and I would be interested in hearing it.

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I'm definitely in the "It was overly melodramatic" camp. The dramatic scenes were so hackneyed that it took me out of the moment rather than drawing me in.

 

Just as an example, I think I would have had a much greater emotional response if Morgan was just dead with no scene accompanying it at all.

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