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37 minutes ago, Jake said:

I can't speak for the other games, but on Tales what was fun was knowing that because of the end of Monkey 2, there was always this feeling of some crackling unknowability that existed at the edge of the game's universe, and that it was there to play with when working on the game, and sort of dare yourself to get up close to. Sometimes I think Tales got too close and sometimes I think it didn't get close enough.

 

Yeah, I guess that's a tough balance to strike, isn't it? You don't want to do anything that spoils that lovely uncanny area that a lot of MI lives in, but you also don't want to pretend like it's not there.

I think CMI's main flaw was that it didn't get close enough, it kept all that stuff way at arm's length and just wanted to tell a pirate adventure while tossing in a few anachronisms. That just about worked for me, and I love the game on its own terms but it felt 'safe'.

I think EMI's main flaw is that it mistook that atmosphere for jokes and references, and opportunities for lore expansion, so instead of it being a pirate adventure with this kind of weird undercurrent of Something Else, it turned into a parody - which for me didn't work. Monkey Island isn't parody, it's more... comic pastiche.

Tales largely succeeded in walking a line, I think.

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The only problem with hell being the secret is that it’s not really that secret.

 

Sure, only the cannibals and Herman are around on the island (who knows all about it).

 

But, somewhat foreshadowing Curse, the cannibals also say they used to have cruise ship tours on the island — and hell itself would surely be a prize destination.

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1 minute ago, Thrik said:


Do monkey ribs have that weird two-colour thing going on, with the brown/gold bits? I couldn’t find any examples in the 30 seconds I spent on Google, but then there are lots of types of simian.

 

Yep, costal cartilage, same as we do:

 

C0111994-Chimpanzee_skeleton.jpg

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19 minutes ago, Laserschwert said:

There were the steel girders as the "ceiling" of the Afterlife in Episode 5, which never got picked up on again ever. When I first saw it, I was sure this was some nod to the amusement park concept.

It was, the girders and music in the Crossroads were both referencing underground tunnels to some degree, that area had a map that was a little bit of a park map. The boat dock is meant to be styled after boarding gates for a ride. It’s hard to hear but there’s also some audio that bleeds through when lechuck is defeated. 
 

When designing Guybrush digging out of his grave, my initial desire was for the “dirt and grass” to be cardboard and astroturf, almost like he was buried within a stage set, but we decided to keep it more real. That said, there was a desire with the Crossroads to make it feel like artificial vignettes, and stay ambiguous as to what they are or where you are. I honestly couldn’t tell you what any of it means in a literal symbolic or plot sense but could talk about what it was trying to evoke for me for probably way too long haha

 

Both Monkey Island 1 and 2 have this feeling that if you get too close to the edge of the world, if you dig too deep, it will all start unraveling. It’s a wonderful feeling to have in a world you get to explore so fully, and get to be an active participant in because it’s a video game. 

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I think Tales ep 5 had a great take on the concept of Secrets in the theives den.  If we had opened it, it's power as a secret would be null and void.

 

I know a lot of people are hoping for tied up loose ends and I absolutely would love some pressing questions answered finally but I do hope that they don't tie a bow on it completely so to speak. I hope to be left with new questions to chat about for the next 30 years too with the occasional new installment along the way bringing this light back into our existence from time to time.

 

What I'm saying is if they actually ended it, and there was never going to be another monkey island... I honestly don't know what I'd do with myself. I don't mean that I have nothing else, I have an amazing wife, 5 awesome kids and other things I'm a fan of as well...

 

There just aren't a whole lot of things that engage me to this level where I want to constantly talk about, create content of and dissect evey little bit of knowledge available. Monkey Island does though and has repeatedly over and over again with every new release and the time in between.

 

I don't believe it ever has to "end" but that it should absolutely always be handled by those with love and respect for the material. This is part of why I've always been proud to be part of a community who spawned so many people that went on to work on these games and others in series we love etc. To me at least it felt like the series was in good hands because you knew what these characters/stories mean to these people.

 

I do however trust in Ron, should he choose to close the box on MI with this tale then so be it, im sure however he would do it will leave us talking about it for years to come either way. He is sorta really good at that 😉

 

 

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1 minute ago, TimeGentleman said:

 

Yep, costal cartilage, same as we do:

 

C0111994-Chimpanzee_skeleton.jpg


Nice. The photos I found didn’t have much of this going on so I guess it rots away, perhaps.

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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, Thrik said:

Nice. The photos I found didn’t have much of this going on so I guess it rots away, perhaps.

 

Yeah, it's actually very anatomically correct. Whoever drew it was copying a real model/drawing, or just knows their anatomy. The inclusion of costal cartilage (never knew the name of it before, thanks Ben!) really pushes that for me.


Thoracic_Cage_with_Both_Humerii.gif

 

Edited by ThunderPeel2001
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1 hour ago, Jake said:

Not sure whose balls you're talking about here but we weren't allowed to.

Sorry, I can see how that might’ve come off a bit rude. What I tried to say is that I loved the change and after playing I wished it was permanent.

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Just now, Lagomorph01 said:

Sorry, I can see how that might’ve come off a bit rude. What I tried to say is that I loved the change and after playing I wished it was permanent.

If it’s any consolation we were happy we got to make Guybrush himself be sad his hook was gone. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Remi said:

I just played through the EGA version -- the secret is definitely mentioned numerous times by different characters.

 

Yep, you are right. Interesting!

 

Guybrush : What's so scary about this LeChuck guy?

Estevan  : LeChuck was a fearsome pirate. He tried to impress the Governor by
           sailing off to find the Secret of Monkey Island™. But a
           mysterious came up and sank his ship, leaving no survivors. We
           thought that was the end of the fearsome pirate LeChuck. We were
           wrong.

 

 

Stan     : This here is the famous "Sea Monkey." --The only ship ever to make
           it to Monkey Island™... ...and come back with anyone aboard left
           alive. Or, should I say, anyTHING. You see, two previous owners of
           this ship were two adventurous pirates. They set off, like many
           before, to find the legendary Secret of Monkey Island™. And,
           like many before, they disappeared forever. Their fate--a mystery.
           Almost as mysterious as how this ship returned to Mêlée Island™
           without a single human aboard. Some claim it was sailed back by a
           crew of chimps. 

 

 

Captain's log, March 10th.
First mate Toothrot and I have been searching for Monkey Island™ 
for over a month with no success. The directions we purchased on Mêlée proved 
to be a recipe, not a map as we had believed.

Captain's log, March 12th.
I wish Toothrot would take a bath.

Captain's log, March 17th.
I wish Toothrot would stop snoring.
           
Captain's log, March 23rd.
Toothrot is really starting to get on my nerves. I figure it's 
only a matter of time before we come to blows.

Captain's log, April 2nd.
As a gesture to restore our friendship, Toothrot offered to fix dinner tonight.

Captain's log, April 3rd.
I don't know how we did it, but we've arrived at Monkey Island™. Both Toothrot 
and I passed out from the soup he fixed last night. When we awoke, Monkey Island™ 
was sitting off the bow.

Captain's log, April 4th.
Toothrot and I filled the rowboat with supplies and are ready to set out to Monkey Island™.
We are both excited at the prospect of being the first civilized people to learn the Secret 
of Monkey Island™.

Captain' log, April 5th.
We had to turn around and return to the ship. Toothrot forgot to go to the bathroom before 
we left. We'll set out again tomorrow.

 

 

Herman   : Well, I sailed here with a friend of mine twenty years ago. We hoped
           to discover the Secret of Monkey Island™. But my friend met with
           a horrifying and tragic accident... ...which claimed his life...
           ...and I couldn't sail the ship back by myself. I trained a bunch
           of chimps to crew the ship and sail it back to Mêlée Island™.
           They were supposed to get help and come back for me... ...something
           must have happened.

 

 

 

Edited by ThunderPeel2001
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28 minutes ago, ThunderPeel2001 said:

 

 

Herman   : Well, I sailed here with a friend of mine twenty years ago. We hope
           to discover the Secret of Monkey Island™. But my friend met with
           a horrifying and tragic accident... ...which claimed his life...
           ...and I couldn't sail the ship back by myself. I trained a bunch
           of chimps to crew the ship and sail it back to Mêlée Island™.
           They were supposed to get help and come back for me... ...something
           must have happened.

 

 

 

I suppose this last one doesn't quite work if you take the Secret just to be the location. It could be... but then that would be a very odd thing to say.

I feel like this has been a discussion since the #monkey-island days. I remember at some point someone saying it was something to do with the anachronisms. At another point I feel like they said there was a secret, but they thought it would be a disappointment to reveal it.

It might be a fun excercise at some point to try to track down everything that's ever been said or written about the secret in and out of fiction, because I'm sure there are some old words about this that we're forgetting.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Thrik said:

I am pretty sure it’s the presence of a gigantic robotic monkey that’s the secret. If you look closely at the skeleton, it’s strangely metallic. Could it be operated, I wonder.

 

LzZMb9n.jpg

Of note is that three rooms (rooms 66-68) are missing from the MI1 resource files between the entrance to the lava maze underground with the mysterious giant monkey skeleton (room 65) and the Giant Monkey Head exterior closeup (room 69). Controls for the Giant Monkey Robot perhaps?

Edited by ATMcashpoint
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3 minutes ago, ATMcashpoint said:

Of note is that three rooms are missing from the MI1 resource files between the Giant Monkey Head closeup and the entrance to the lava maze underground. Controls for the Giant Monkey Robot perhaps?

The secret is that Monkey Kombat was planned from the first game! 😱

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Posted (edited)

Yeah exactly as I remembered, thanks @Remi for diving even deeper. The "secret" is meant to be existing within the game world. Whether or not Ron & co. ever decided what it is, that's another matter obviously.

Edited by Rum Rogers
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4 hours ago, Jake said:

If a future game doesn't pick up that thread, I don't think it's too harmful to leave behind "Morgan is now the voodoo lady's lackey, off on business that may never cross paths with our heroes again."

 

Actually the best follow up to ToMI would have been a season where Morgan is the protagonist and it really is just a spinoff "tale" from the Monkey Island universe. I know IP holders would never let anyone do that because "muh brand recognition" but considering what a smart mechanic Guybrush's hook became I'm pretty sure Telltale could have done something awesome with a character that can become anything the writers want to. Based on the ending she could be a ghost, could be human, could possess people's bodies and whatever, that's a lot of tools for an adventure game.

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3 hours ago, Glokidd said:

I think Tales ep 5 had a great take on the concept of Secrets in the theives den.  If we had opened it, it's power as a secret would be null and void.

 

That's one of the best meta moments in the whole franchise.

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To me, the most interesting thing about "a secret" is this small conversation with the Voodoo Lady in Monkey 1:

 

Quote

Voodoo Lady:

Now go and find the one that loves you. But be warned.

 

Guybrush:

Don't worry, I'll watch out for LeChuck.


Voodoo Lady:

Not of LeChuck, of yourself and what you will find. What you will find out about yourself and your world.

It will terrify you.

 

Ominous, isn't it? This small bit is why I never believed the Secret to be just the lava caves, but instead something that simply won't be fully revealed in this game.

But to be fair, she doesn't state that she is talking about the "Secret". It could be something completely different. But it's likely.

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Marius said:

To me, the most interesting thing about "a secret" is this small conversation with the Voodoo Lady in Monkey 1:

 

 

Ominous, isn't it? This small bit is why I never believed the Secret to be just the lava caves, but instead something that simply won't be fully revealed in this game.

But to be fair, she doesn't state that she is talking about the "Secret". It could be something completely different. But it's likely.

 In support of that would be this excerpt from "The Memoirs of Guybrush Threepwood: The Monkey Island Years"

 

Quote

 

 


Epilogue:
IN WHICH I MULL OVER WHAT HAS ALREADY OCCURRED

Looking back, I can hardly believe that I used to be the innocent, unassuming boy that first landed on Mêlée Island,™ eager for fighting and fortunes. Now I'm a man, battle-hardened, wealthy, and still wild about my Governor. There seems to be nothing left for me to do. I could very well live out the rest of my life in perfect serenity and contentedness.

Except, one thing keeps bothering me.

I never did discover the Secret of Monkey Island™...

 

 

Now the Canon status of a POV walkthrough written by 2 third parties, while official, could certainly be dubious but hey, it had to be signed off by someone before it hit the box I imagine 😀

 

Edited by Glokidd
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18 minutes ago, Marius said:

To me, the most interesting thing about "a secret" is this small conversation with the Voodoo Lady in Monkey 1:

 

 

Ominous, isn't it? This small bit is why I never believed the Secret to be just the lava caves, but instead something that simply won't be fully revealed in this game.

But to be fair, she doesn't state that she is talking about the "Secret". It could be something completely different. But it's likely.

 

Yeah, I took notice of that during my recent replay.

 

Too: "Pirate Lingo! It's how everybody talked back then. Come on Guybrush, play along." It struck me as weirdly eerie as opposed to being a throwaway joke. It certainly foreshadows the theme park, and how does he know Guybrush's name?

 

None of which has to have anything to do with the secret, of course, but it's not outside the realm of possibility either.

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I'm pretty sure the Secret of Monkey Island is the title of the game, which was chosen because it sounds like a classic pirate adventure. When characters ask about it, it's a bit of fourth wall breaking with the trademark symbol and all, like the characters themselves saw the title screen.

 

The developers were a bunch of irreverent dweeby programmers improvising jokes for eachother. Despite that, they stumbled upon a wonderfully evocative atmosphere, and managed to thread the needle into a sort of sarcastic mystique. 

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Posted (edited)

  

7 minutes ago, Remi said:

 

Yeah, I took notice of that during my recent replay.

 

Too: "Pirate Lingo! It's how everybody talked back then. Come on Guybrush, play along." It struck me as weirdly eerie as opposed to being a throwaway joke. It certainly foreshadows the theme park, and how does he know Guybrush's name?

 

None of which has to have anything to do with the secret, of course, but it's not outside the realm of possibility either.

 

And I hope Return will have more of these little bits of mystery, and not explain or answer them. 😊

Edited by Marius
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My one hope for RtMI is that the game continues to explore the thinning skin of reality that MI2 brought to the fore. MI2 makes it abundantly clear that the anachronisms present throughout both are very much an intentional plot device, thus continuation of said plot thread is essential in my opinion for this game to be a true "3a" rather than just "Ron makes a new MI game". (That isn't to say the latter is bad thing mind you)

 

Of particular interest is combining the Voodoo Lady's comments on Big Whoop with the cut dialogue between Largo and LeChuck. The tunnels being some sort of interdimensional nexus between multiple worlds/realities is also a great in-universe way to explore the above while avoiding stepping on the toes of the other games.

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1 hour ago, Marius said:

And I hope Return will have more of these little bits of mystery, and not explain or answer them. 😊

Definitely agree, hope the overall mysterious atmosphere is kept and the anachronisms and the weird bits are never fully explained at all. It's part of what makes Monkey Island so amazing.

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2 hours ago, Remi said:

 

Yeah, I took notice of that during my recent replay.

 

Too: "Pirate Lingo! It's how everybody talked back then. Come on Guybrush, play along." It struck me as weirdly eerie as opposed to being a throwaway joke. It certainly foreshadows the theme park, and how does he know Guybrush's name?

 

None of which has to have anything to do with the secret, of course, but it's not outside the realm of possibility either.

 

I've heard a lot of people say similar things about that line over the years, but honestly it's never struck me as anything but a joke about the characters in the game being played by "actors," a la the outtakes Pixar used to include in all their end-credits. The guy is overcommitting to his accent and Guybrush has to ask him what he just said, and he's ticked off because he doesn't want to have to do another take. I've always figured it was one of the "placeholder" jokes that Schafer and Grossman included to amuse themselves that wound up in the final game.

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