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Return to Monkey Island 🚨GAME-WIDE🚨 Spoiler Chat


Jake
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This thread is a place to talk about the ENTIRE GAME so if you haven't played it yet, maybe stay away!

 

☠️ YE BE WARNED ☠️

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3 minutes ago, LuigiHann said:

I will say this: I'm not certain if the flooring inspector line in RtMI is meant to be taken literally at all. It's just another self-aware throwback joke intended to play up the anticlimactic nature of that sequence. 

 

If I did want to read it a bit more literally, I'd assume Guybrush as a kid either overheard or just imagined the "you look like a flooring inspector" insult, then grew up to be a flooring inspector himself... talk about unsatisfying!

 

And yeah, it did occur to me that Guybrush might have really had an old friend or brother named Chuck, and that RtMI's Chuckie might be Chuck's son, for sure. Could even sketch between the lines that Guybrush and whoever Chuckie was repaired their relationship enough that their children are friends, which is a nice thought. Even then, can Chuckie the person and LeChuck the theme park animatronic coexist? Maybe the theme park pirate is unnamed, and Guybrush just calls it LeChuck? Works as well as anything, I suppose. But I do enjoy how it only works on several levels, never quite works on one level alone. 

 

The LeChuck rivalry seems so personal that it has to be based on a real person, right? Maybe he and Chuck were really both vying for Elaine's love and developed a personal rivalry there? If I want to take this to an even more uncomfortable place (and recalling the wedding veil in LeChuck's office), I'd even suggest that Elaine had a relationship with Chuck at some point and Chuckie is actually Guybrush's stepchild. 😬

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48 minutes ago, Sadbrush said:

But damn, I had no idea he sung The Mary Tyler Moore Show theme song in MI2 (I had to verify it myself). Very interesting way of bringing it all together. (Probably unintentional, but I like making all the pieces fit.)

 

I did? Was this pulled from the SE for licensing or something? If you'd asked me five minutes ago whether I knew the MTM Show theme, I'd have sworn up and down I don't. Even seeing the text now, still got nothing.

 

Of course, I also discovered evidence not too long ago that I apparently watched Red Sonja around 2018 or so and I have precisely zero memory of it, so maybe this is a me issue.

Edited by Dmnkly
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3 minutes ago, Dmnkly said:

I did? Was this pulled from the SE? If you'd asked me five minutes ago whether I knew the MTM Show theme, I'd have sworn up and down I didn't.

 

Of course, I also discovered evidence that I watched Red Sonja 4-5 years ago and still have zero memory of it, so maybe this is a me issue.

 

I think it was just in the original version of the game. Seems to have been replaced by dialogue at some point. I pulled this up from here: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=286271652

 

Quote

Inhaling helium multiple times in the last level against LeChuck used get you several songs.

Now, presumably due to potential copyright issues, it has been replaced with four pieces of original dialogue.

 

  • "Stump balm, for the active chafing pirate."
  • "There's a Monkey in My Pocket," which makes a return in the third game."
  • "You're in for it now, you bilious bag of barnacle bait!"
  • And the ever-famous, "I'm Bobbin Threadbare. Are you my mother?"

 

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Now that the game's out I wanted to go back and read some of the previews that I skipped earlier when I was afraid of spoilers. The one I was most interested in was the Ars preview, but it seems to have been replaced by their review. Anyone know what the big spoilerly reveal was that everyone was warning about? 

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1 hour ago, Sadbrush said:

 

I like your post about the "turning off lights" trope. I didn't quite understand the significance of shutting down the park as I was first playing. Now as I keep thinking about it, and remembering his "Oh no...not yet" realization that it's all over, it makes it all the more devastating. 

 

But damn, I had no idea he sung The Mary Tyler Moore Show theme song in MI2 (I had to verify it myself). Very interesting way of bringing it all together. (Probably unintentional, but I like making all the pieces fit.)

 

 

Shit, something clicked for me as I was reading this. Maybe the reason Guybrush and Elaine's relationship seems so "passionless" compared to earlier adventures is because we're seeing this entire game through Boybrush's eyes, as Guybrush tells him the story. (Also explains why Boybrush is our initial playable character and even fleshes out the "pop-up storybook"-like art style, as seen through a child's eyes.) That might also be why he imagines Chuckie and Dee as versions of LeChuck and Lila in the story (and perhaps accounts for some other personality differences from previous games).

 

I know we all have our personal headcanon for what happens, but I'm starting to piece together a more concrete view of what Ron may have originally intended back in the '90s. Basically, The Secret of Monkey Island is that it's actually a theme park (something we always suspected from that locked employee door in the back alley). Guybrush is indeed a flooring inspector getting lost in these worlds and his own imagination. Elaine is possibly the (slightly) older woman he meets there in a higher position of authority ("governor") who initially rebuffs him. LeChuck is apparently not based on any real life character, but is actually a realistic animatronic display (this is the hardest pill for me to swallow). Stan is just the capitalist, money-hungry jerk in charge of the place (always slinging his wares). And all the characters he meets in this town are either real life denizens of the park (employees and visitors) and/or literal cardboard cutout characters. MI2's ending basically reveals this for us—and some version of this was originally meant as the ending to MI1 before it got nixed. The whole element of Chuckie's "lightning eyes" and Elaine waiting by the pit were essentially added later as a way to continue the franchise, if someone so wished.

 

I have to look at Return as a literal return to this world, and not directly continuing the events of MI2. The kids are re-enacting Guybrush's telling of events 30 years later at the beginning of this game, and in no way is meant to be the framing device that Ron intended back in the '90s (it's something that probably came later with age, wisdom and begrudgingly accepting the other games as canon). Many things in Return are rehashing what made the originals so great, but it takes on a slightly new form (as seen through Boybrush's eyes). But what's clear is that it takes place many years later, with a father essentially telling his kid grand, tall tales of his many "adventures" at these theme parks (with some details changed either due to unreliable memory or embellishment on his end). At the end, he reflects on his life as a flooring inspector—which initially seems mundane and boring—but his "riches" in life come in the form of his wife and his kid. Kind of a cheesy ending, but I get it. Reflectively looking back on all of it, over the past 30 years, it's very touching. 

 

The things I'm still trying to reconcile are where we meet Guybrush at the beginning of MI1. If we are to assume it takes place in modern times (1990) and given his youthful appearance, I'd say he's 18 or so? I don't know what kind of certification it takes to be a flooring inspector (what the hell is a flooring inspector anyway?). And at the end of MI2, he's a literal kid (8-9?) which doesn't quite make much sense if that was intended as the defacto ending. Unless it's just meant as a memory of him playing as a kid with his adopted family, which led to his lifetime of dreaming about being a pirate and eventually working in the amusement park business. And there's also the matter of LeChuck, who could just be based on his older brother Chuckie, who was a bit of a jerk and a bully. Which also begs the question: Who is Chuckie in Return? Perhaps his nephew? (Chuckie Jr.?)

 

Sheesh, it took a few days (and restless nights of Monkey Island dreams) for me to reach a place of quiet acceptance about this ending, but I think I'm just about there. One thing is for certain: this wouldn't bother me so much if I hadn't been thinking about this for 25 or so years. It's weird to finally put this longstanding mystery to rest after all this time. I guess I'm finally in the same place as Guybrush at the end of the game; sitting on a bench, quietly reflecting on my thoughts and a lifetime of memories playing these games.


I think your analysis is top notch.

I actually thought today about Boybrush being the one imagining the story and picturing his friends as the characters… It totally makes sense! I feel like this is the last piece of the puzzle I was missing to understand everything.

Edited by Joe monsters
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I think this is the first time in the series where I would be perfectly fine if this was the final one. I might actually prefer if it was.

 

Ron tweeted earlier that he would be surprised if this was the final one. I actually love the fact that I'm now afraid of them making another one, as opposed to them never being able to make another one. That's simply a testament to how well I feel this one ended.

 

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On 9/22/2022 at 8:05 PM, bishopcruz said:

I don't really feel the depth.

 

You got me thinking about LeChuck's Revenge and how sometimes "depth" can be the result of a collaborative effort.

 

Only some elements of MI2 were intentionally designed to provide allusions to deeper, hidden meanings. The ending, for example, was defined at a very late stage of development and provided no clear explanation of events or elements of the story that in themselves would be considered "deep". Then people dug in for 30 years. I have no doubt that the story and meaning of the old Monkey Island games were augmented and expanded (sometimes excessively) by players and their analytical skills, finding meaning in deep places that the authors did not even imagine existed.

 

RtMI was published less than a week ago. I believe that much of the depth we expect from the story depends very much on how willing we are to accept the role of patient contributor or observer. Readers have very different approaches to storytelling: on one end of the spectrum, some people would prefer to see a fully functioning well, immediately recognizable as a deep structure and able to provide clean water to the thirsty, effortlessly. On the other end of the spectrum, players familiar with MI2's intentional ambiguities might be used to an author who simply gives them a small depression in the ground, a giant "X" painted on it, a shovel, and all the time they want to search for deeper meanings and to make the game their own.

 

Everyone chooses their own position between the two extremes.

Edited by LowLevel
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Obviously, I have a VERY vested interest in what happens with Monkey Island going forward, so take this for what it's worth 😄

 

But one of the things I kind of love about how the fellas wrapped this one up is that I don't think more would diminish anything. I love how they've kind of closed the loop while setting up almost a kind of framework that all of these stories inhabit.

 

In some ways, I feel like this frees any future projects, should we get them, to simply be fun Monkey Island stories, new adventures, a standalone chapters, without the burden of dealing with the larger questions and setup. I feel like it would now be possible for a new game — with maybe just a couple of subtle nods to the metastory — to simply tell a fun story.

 

I mean, it would be tough to top the emotional pull of RtMI. And maybe the best thing would be not to try. But so long as any future adventures are deferential to what we just played, I don't think there's any reason they'd have to detract from anything.

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Yeah, I was very curious by Elaine's tease at the end of the game (the lost map to the treasure of Mire Island). It seems to suggest that these adventures keep going on (or live on in our imaginations). If they're really worried about "ruining" the impact of Return's ending, they could always be made as prequels with younger Guybrush (or even Boybrush himself). The only thing I dread is this series getting rebooted entirely (unless it's as a film franchise...which could work). 

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I think given the themes of RTMI's metanarrative, in my opinion it would be better if any prospective new MI games be they official or fangame explicitly choose to *not* be deferential to the other games in the series.

 

Which is to say, RTMI should be interpreted as the opening of the "Monkey Island Multiverse". No more central linear timeline or canon. Do you have a compelling interpretation of the franchise and the resources to make a game? Then have at it!

 

There is a lot of latent narrative potential within the franchise that shouldn't be allowed to go to waste.

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8 hours ago, miraculous.0 said:

Really glad to hear I'm not the only one who got emotional at the end. I flat out started crying and whenever I think back on it, I start getting teary eyed. Like, the ending just felt so profoundly beautiful to me. And that last moment with Guybrush sitting on the bench, it left me with this warm but sad feeling of finality that I've always wanted. I've always been one of the people that weirdly enough, didn't want the world to be real. I've always felt like it gave the series this sort of emotional core to it. That no matter how mundane and soul crushing the real world can be, there's an escape in this fun pirate world we're all so invested in.

 

 

Very true. Mirror's my feelings. It's quite remarkable that the game has left such an impression. I guess part of it is nostalgia. I associate MI to my carefree days. But Monkey Island games were not the only games that I played around that time. The emotional attachment to MI world is a little bit beyond my comprehension. The ending of RtMI was so hard hitting, especially when you turn off the lights, because is feels like an end of an era. I am still getting emotional thinking about it, and even writing about it at the moment. For some reasons it is difficult to stop thinking about it. It is incredible that a video game can do this to you.  

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On 9/23/2022 at 2:32 AM, KestrelPi said:

I liked that they used Elaine to explore the idea of Guybrush's selfishness in going for his goals.

 

The more I think about it, the more it seems to me that in this game Elaine plays the role of educator and caretaker of a less mature person. Which is consistent with what their relationship should have been according to Ron.


There are so many subtle allusions scattered around...

 

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Hey all. I've been been browsing this site for many many years now, first time i've made an account and commented.

 

Just finished the game yesterday. I loved it. I've been thinking about the ending since then. My interpretation is this: 

 

Every MI game we've played up to this point has essentially been boybrush's interpretations (and sometimes reenactments with his friends) of Guybrush's tall tales. This means that everything we have seen has already passed through two layers of unreliable narrators. Both Guybrush's comment to boybrush about changing the ending of Big Whoop, and Elaine's comment to Guybrush at the end about retelling the ending of this story point to that imo.

 

As to whether the original stories are true, I'm 50/50. Most likely (and given Guybrush's comments and reactions at the Original Secret Park at the end) these are fantasies constructed by Guybrush as he was playing in Stan's evolving pirate-themed park (either as a kid who later grew up, or as an adult flooring inspector from the start). Elaine seems to be the only other real person in this fantasy, shown by her appearance at the end but also by her general warmth and understanding towards Guybrush throughout the whole story. She might as well have initially been another person running through the same park. I feel like the point at the end is that Guybrush finally accepts that these fantasies of piratey achievements are secondary to actual achievements like focusing on Elaine, having shared adventures with her and starting a family. The point where he lets go and shuts off the lights.

 

On the other hand, the original stories could be true, and the whole theme park aspect could be more symbolic of guybrush's shallow cyclical way of chasing his goals and treating everyone as "not real". Him exiting the theme park with elaine could be symbolic of his (once again) letting go of the way he has been living his life up to that point. It's possibly not by chance that the overt theme park aspect comes into focus in the two monkey island games where guybrush leaves the most negative impact on the world around him through his actions.

 

On a personal note: I started playing this series back when I was 8, through Curse. Ever since then this series has followed me as I grew up, became an adult and recently started a family of my own. This final installment (along with its themes) came for me at a perfect point in my life where I am reexamining my priorities and my relationship to video game (and generally media) consumption. Given how attention and time are finite, "letting go" and focusing on what really matters before it's too late seems to be a core theme and has really resonated with me.

 

Thank you to @Dmnkly, @Jakeand the rest of the teams that have worked on this series. It feels like it's time for this generation to let the theme park go. Or, at least, hand it over to the next one.

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Its an "the adventure continues"! ending. 🥲

 

I'm really take it or leave it with new ones. I would actually really love this to be the end. Its not a perfect ending, but a sequel wouldn't answer my lingering questions. And I'm satisfied with my visit.

 

You go home from the park one day, not knowing it was that visit which was going to be your last.

 

that sounds dark. oops i didn't mean for it to be dark.

 

 

 

ok so. complaining about the ending time.

 

I never understood people who really wanted a resolution for Largo LaGrande, he's an extremely minor villain who bullies Guybrush for a bit, and then acts as somebody for LeChuck to bounce dialogue off of. No real need to resolve him. who cares.

 

But, oh no! My hubris! I want more from the new pirate leaders! What's with them? What was Lila's deal? What happened to Madison? Where did Trent disappear to? What were their goals and motives in the end? Were they an analogy for Gen Z, and if so, to what end? And these are questions I know a sequel might never resolve, or only tease me about, because the franchise has a history of doing so.

 

I'm feelin' Largo fans right now, is what I'm saying.

 

After all, all the new pirate leaders really do is bully Guybrush and then serve as characters for LeChuck to bounce dialogue off of.

 

And I know the door's open to my own interpretations. but my honest, whiny ass feelings right now are this: I don't want interpretation of the new pirate leaders, i want lore. I'm not entitled to lore, and I know that. I don't feel like I'm owed lore. I can't and won't demand lore. but tbh I do honestly want it. I know I just sound petty here and I'm sorry. I just need to be embarrassingly honest. I need to post this cringe right now, just get it out of my system so I can work through it.

 

secret of new pirate leaders

 

I guess the new pirate leaders were not even that gen Z in the end. THIS IS SPARTA was more a millennial thing yanno? Gen Z say Yeet, amirite? o those wacky kidz with their tittaks

 

20220925_174906.png

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19 hours ago, leecrawford19 said:

You then use the stone tablet in the lava to figure out how many times to turn each dial. 

 

The aspect that confused me was that the inscription on the stone tablet says "after four extra years out at sea". I did not immediately interpret the "after four extra years" as "change the year piece four times". The center piece shows... years and I thought that "four" meant that I had to do some calculations with the years. I eventually understood it.

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1 hour ago, LowLevel said:

 

The aspect that confused me was that the inscription on the stone tablet says "after four extra years out at sea". I did not immediately interpret the "after four extra years" as "change the year piece four times". The center piece shows... years and I thought that "four" meant that I had to do some calculations with the years. I eventually understood it.

 

Yea, I had the exact same issue. I ended up solving it by chance and when the door opened I ended up sitting there for a few more minutes trying to figure it out as I didn't want to go through unless I understood why it worked.

 

Speaking of puzzles, I generally enjoyed them all but I did find it was a little easier than I expected. First MI game I managed to get through completely without using hints. And I wasn't ever stuck more than a few minutes before I found something I could progress with. Is this just because I'm getting better at adventure games?

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I'll post my gushing thoughts on this amazing game later but a couple of questions I have.

 

1. Why is Lechuck a zombie again? (Don't get me wrong its my favourite form but shouldn't he be something else after the pirate god form?)

2. Why are there no monkey's in this game? Why none on Monkey Island?

3. Why wasn't Elaine bothered by anything? (In previous games she would get angry at him like at the costume party, the cursed ring and Tales) is this because its Guybrush telling the story through rose tinted glasses?

4. I'm surprised Madison wasn't the last of the trio standing, i dont even remember seeing her die. Guessing mutiny?

Edited by backtothemansion
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36 minutes ago, backtothemansion said:

2. Why are there no monkey's in this game? Why none on Monkey Island?

 

Yea, I was wondering the same. And wasn't there some line from the pirate leaders about this after they pushed Guybrush off the cliff? I didn't quite understand that.

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38 minutes ago, backtothemansion said:

1. Why is Lechuck a zombie again? (Don't get me wrong its my favourite form but shouldn't he be something else after the pirate god form?)

LeChuck did return to being a zombie in the beginning of Tales as well without explanation, presumably because it's the most iconic and recognizable design. I'm tbh fine with *unspecified stuff* having happened between Tales and Return that we don't know details about, that resulted in this.

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39 minutes ago, backtothemansion said:

I'll post my gushing thoughts on this amazing game later but a couple of questions I have.

 

1. Why is Lechuck a zombie again? (Don't get me wrong its my favourite form but shouldn't he be something else after the pirate god form?)

2. Why are there no monkey's in this game?

3. Why wasn't Elaine bothered by anything? (In previous games she would get angry at him like at the costume party, the cursed ring and Tales) is this because its Guybrush telling the story through rose tinted glasses?

4. I'm surprised Madison wasn't the last of the trio standing, i dont even remember seeing her die. Guessing mutiny?

1. He was a zombie in Tales already. There's no more logic to LeChuck's switching forms since Monkey 4.

2. Monkey Island isn't about monkeys. It's about parrots.

3. No idea.

4. Killed by Lila. She made a comment about that when you see Madison's hat.

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3 hours ago, LowLevel said:

 

The aspect that confused me was that the inscription on the stone tablet says "after four extra years out at sea". I did not immediately interpret the "after four extra years" as "change the year piece four times". The center piece shows... years and I thought that "four" meant that I had to do some calculations with the years. I eventually understood it.


To be honest I solved the puzzle totally by accident. After the door opened I decided to load a save and check the hint book to see what the actual answer was 😂

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10 hours ago, Sadbrush said:

I had no idea he sung The Mary Tyler Moore Show theme song in MI2 (I had to verify it myself). Very interesting way of bringing it all together. (Probably unintentional, but I like making all the pieces fit.)


Oh, I'm 99% sure it was not done on purpose, but that's part of the beauty. Shows like Mary Tyler Moore and Get Smart were floating around in the heads of Ron/Dave/Tim and so leave a mark on the game... and in exactly the same way, those bits of contemporary pop culture would have been floating around in Adultbrush's brain and so left a mark on both his story and thoughts he was having about his own life.

 

In a sense, Adultbuybrush probably got his kid saying "That's the second biggest ____ I've ever seen" because Adultbrush had watched Get Smart. And it doesn't matter whether Adultbrush remembered that it came from Get Smart oor not.

 

Chucky would've tacked on "I am your brother" and "take off my mask" because he's probably seen or heard of Empire Strikes Back. This kind of stuff does permeate in children's play, as I can attest to seeing my son assigning Minecraft elements to some of his stories!

 

10 hours ago, Dmnkly said:

 

I did? Was this pulled from the SE for licensing or something? If you'd asked me five minutes ago whether I knew the MTM Show theme, I'd have sworn up and down I don't. Even seeing the text now, still got nothing.

 

Of course, I also discovered evidence not too long ago that I apparently watched Red Sonja around 2018 or so and I have precisely zero memory of it, so maybe this is a me issue.

 

Nah, you recorded helium lines for "Pirate on Scabb" and "Monkey in my Pocket". The older versions were Mary Tyler Moore, Lollipop Guild, and That's the Way I Like It.

 

I choose to believe that the reason your MI1 lines didn't have Guybrush singing "With my SPEAR and magic HELmet!" (a dialogue option against LeChuck in Part 4) was due to licensing with Looney Tunes.

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