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Return to Monkey Island 🚨GAME-WIDE🚨 Spoiler Chat


Jake
Message added by Jake,

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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On 11/20/2022 at 5:30 PM, Udvarnoky said:

We know Ron wouldn’t have made CMI, but that game’s team was neither unconscious nor careless about recognizing the substructure going on in his games, in my opinion, and they made an earnest attempt to do that aspect justice. In the wake of Ron finally getting to have his say after thirty years, I actually find myself more impressed than ever with the ways the middle chapters walked that tricky line they were lumbered with.

 

So well put. It's strange, but I think CMI may have leapt to the top of my favourite MI games after playing REMI. And I'm not even sure why.

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Ron Gilbert posted an early (2020) RTMI puzzle dependancy chart on his blog.

 

https://www.grumpygamer.com/rtmi_pdc

 

There's a few interesting things here, including that the Loom guy was going to be involved in a puzzle, and the cannibals were going to return. Widey Bones may have been called Brother Jack, or a different character named Brother Jack may have filled her role at this stage.

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On 9/22/2022 at 10:11 PM, NightWalker said:

Characters, story, puzzles and even music (it's mostly a rework of the old tunes) seem not special to me.

 

I haven't made up my mind about characters, story and puzzles yet, but the music, to me, is stellar.

First of all, there is no shortage of new themes/tunes/motifs in this game. I must have listened to the Blockade theme about two thousand times, and I still think that technically, that should count as three new 'tunes'. Several new motifs on Brr Muda have caught my attention and I was humming them for days, the main town hall music especially. The accordion theme of Guybrush and LeChuck fighting is also great. There is almost no rehash of old themes on Monkey Island, Scurvy, Brr Muda, and Terror Island. Melee didn't quite click for me, but then again, not everything has to.

 

The iMuse opus magnum is of course on LeShip. A few new themes have made it to my piano (though I'm trying my fingers at Phatt Island Jail right now and it's a bit frustrating), there's one LeShip theme that I really love. But of course LeChuck's theme is looming throughout LeShip. There's that one variant where I feel like they "call" out with the first notes of LeChuck's theme and "answer" it with notes from the cemetary theme.


And I really feel like they "reworked" themes in an often surprising and elaborate way. Like transposing the Lookout theme (unheard since TSoMI, I think?) into a minor key, and immediately it sounds like it was written that way.  And the rock version of the Scumm Bar, wasn't that great?

 

I had hoped that being ten weeks too late to this game would have the ultimate perk of hearing all the new arrangements by fans on youtube. They're not yet there, sadly. I really think this soundtrack deserves more recognition and praise.

 

 

Edited by Vainamoinen
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2 hours ago, Vainamoinen said:

I had hoped that being ten weeks too late to this game would have the ultimate perk of hearing all the new arrangements by fans on youtube. They're not yet there, sadly. I really think this soundtrack deserves more recognition and praise.

Game Brass did a cover of LeShip that is great: 

 

 

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Hi all!


I'm a long time point'n'click fan, I looked at this forum for some time, never subscribed.
Now I just finished playing Return to Monkey Island and I created an account, so I can share my point of view.
And here it is, maybe a bit out of limb for a fan site, I understand it could hurt some fan, but still, this is what I feel, and I want to be honest about it.

 

 SPOILER ALERT !!     Don't read below this point if you don't want spoilers!


Return to Monkey Island starts as a great game. Enjoyable graphics, humor, many charachters with their side stories.
The plot develops quite well, it was intriguing to me, kept me attached to the screen. Seems like the authors know their art.
Then I get near the end. Guybrush is about to discover the secret, and of course, I'm curious to see how it turns out to be. How the secret affects the main characters, the side characters, the world into which the story is set. The gran finale of the universe into which I find myself as a player, for the courtesy of the author. And this goes in the same way I get myself inside the story of a movie as viewer, of a novel as reader. Even of a song as listener. All for courtesy of the authors.
And then, surprise surprise, the storytelling interrupts.

 

As audience of a story, so as videogame player in this case, I feel not respected. Because I've put my time into following the author's story, respecting him, and so I expect respect from the author. Respect from author towards the audience, means finishing to tell the story, consistently to how it was started and developed. So of course I want to understand the reason for this sudden stop.


The reason advanced inside the game, about why the story stops being told, is because it's just a story. Quite silly reason, I believe.
The metanarrative expedient is used. The story begins with Guybrush telling the story to his son, sitting on a bench. So we have metanarrative since the beginning. In the Intro we have metanarrative with retcon (retroactive continuity) to rework and "fix" the ending of MI2, and give continuity to the plot. So I know Guybrush is telling the story to his son, since the beginning, and it's ok. Because I would know anyway it is just a story. It has real world authors, who are the actual people telling the story, anyway. I knew it, I decided to buy the game, but above all I decided to put my time into playing the game. And the authors make me indeed play the story, in the game: when Guybrush started narrating to its son, as a player I started playing the actual story of Return to Monkey Island. And it's a good game to play. Then I'm pulled out of the tale, right before the end. So to stay in the field of metaphores, here we also have the metaphore of coitus interruptus applied to a videogame 😁.

 

As author, you can switch me back to Guybrush on the bench, you can show me there is a theme park with the story of Monkey Island, whatever you want, but then if you respect me as a player, you bring me back INSIDE the story, and you make me play the end.
When you have a hugely developed plot, the most difficult thing for even the greatest authors is finishing the story without ruining it. Without making it too silly or stupid.
Metanarrative was used also other times in the history of storytelling, think to movies like "Synecdoche, New York" or "The Truman Show", but in each case, this approach was used to convey a meaningful message about the story itself.
Here, we have metanarrative as an excuse to avoid finishing the story. Quite easy to finish like this dear R G. Same thing you've done with Thimbleweed Park: in that game, right before the end, the plot was so developed that it would have needed 1 or 2 sequels to finish it. But no need: surprise surprise, it was just a story, so we just close it with this metanarrative autocelebration.


I feel disappointed. Not because of the money I've  spent onto the game itself, but because someone brought me inside a universe he's built, and then squashed it all, with me being still inside. Traumatic experience. To be honest, I suspect narcissism is related to this attitude on the authors side.

 

A pity for the story... it's not finished so it is de facto a draft.

I will try another game.

 

Thanks to anyone who has read this until the end.

 

Cheers.

Edited by ThreeHeadedDonkey
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Welcome! Your take is formulated quite respectfully, considering your emotions about the ending. If you keep that up, you do not need to worry about hurting fans ;)

 

About the specific core of your argument, the "coitus interruptus", I feel you!

 

Ron likely knew this ending would not land for everyone, but it seems you did feel the (imo) intended disappointment, but not the (imo) equally intended closure, not about the narrative of the Secret, but about that it's fine to enjoy a fictional world to its fullest even if you're aware of its fictionality.

 

This was definitely risky on the part of Ron, but it's what may have been on his mind since SMI and he wanted to pull through with it. That Thimbleweed Park has a similar ending (and ticks many of the boxes from Ron's blog post) fits with the hypothesis of it being kind of an outlet for Ron's bottled up MI ideas from a time when a Ron-helmed sequel was thought virtually impossible.

 

There is another quite long thread about the whole game with various opinions and reasoning and many others about specific parts of it, that you might want to check out and maybe some other reads of the ending can add to your perspective, or you'd like to contribute yours :)

 

edit: Looks like you got merged into said thread 😁

Edited by Gins
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22 hours ago, Gins said:

Welcome! Your take is formulated quite respectfully, considering your emotions about the ending. If you keep that up, you do not need to worry about hurting fans ;)

 

About the specific core of your argument, the "coitus interruptus", I feel you!

 

Ron likely knew this ending would not land for everyone, but it seems you did feel the (imo) intended disappointment, but not the (imo) equally intended closure, not about the narrative of the Secret, but about that it's fine to enjoy a fictional world to its fullest even if you're aware of its fictionality.

 

This was definitely risky on the part of Ron, but it's what may have been on his mind since SMI and he wanted to pull through with it. That Thimbleweed Park has a similar ending (and ticks many of the boxes from Ron's blog post) fits with the hypothesis of it being kind of an outlet for Ron's bottled up MI ideas from a time when a Ron-helmed sequel was thought virtually impossible.

 

thanks for sharing feedback.

Well I would say that I see both the "intentions" that you mentioned.

But for the disappointment part, I see it as worse than intended (if it was intended), because I'd like to play the story to the end, and not fill in the blanks by myself. No need to disrupt so much my gaming experience, just to draw attention on the author's "positive" intention about closure... which I don't like either, because I already knew that a fictional world is enjoyable: indeed, that's why I bought the game in the first place. 😄 No need to represent a fictional world inside a fictional world just to explain it is fictional. Everyone knows it right from the start.

 

I know I'm remaining on my spot with this answer... but this is what I feel like.

 

 

22 hours ago, Gins said:

There is another quite long thread about the whole game with various opinions and reasoning and many others about specific parts of it, that you might want to check out and maybe some other reads of the ending can add to your perspective, or you'd like to contribute yours :)

 

edit: Looks like you got merged into said thread 😁

 

sure thanks I see it was merged 🙂

 

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On 12/6/2022 at 2:59 PM, ThreeHeadedDonkey said:

I feel disappointed. Not because of the money I've  spent onto the game itself, but because someone brought me inside a universe he's built, and then squashed it all, with me being still inside. Traumatic experience.

 

Ron gave us the original "secret". The one that fans have been asking for, for decades: It's all a theme park. We can't blame him for some of us not liking it. 

 

It's not necessarily the reveal I would have liked, but it's what he had in mind all these years, and what fans wanted to see... (the most asked question of him).

 

However, the second ending (ie. the actual ending of Return to Monkey Island) is up to you, and made "canon" by what appears after the credits: 

https://mixnmojo.com/features/sitefeatures/The-Many-Epilogues-of-Return-to-Monkey-Island

 

For me, the wrapper of Guybrush telling stories to his son was effective and poignant, but letting the audience choose their own "ending" (as it were -- is it real, is it fiction) means it's really up to you what happens.

Edited by ThunderPeel2001
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21 hours ago, ThunderPeel2001 said:

For me, the wrapper of Guybrush telling stories to his son was effective and poignant, but letting the audience choose their own "ending" (as it were -- is it real, is it fiction) means it's really up to you what happens.

 

from my perspective, the "wrapper" itself, is not bad. But it is relatively long and developed, whereas the ending to RTMI, is just a dialog choice, with a consequent video sequence of a few seconds.

The metanarrative concept of themepark and storytelling, is ok... maybe could also make it a bit shorter.

Above all, the problem is the actual ending!

I mean, as a player, I want to PLAY it. With moving characters, dialogues, soundtrack, and actual narrative outcome for the main character! And why not, also some outcome about the side characters, what the hell.

This is completely missing, this could have been done also with the "wrapper" in place.

 

Thanks for sharing your views. 😄

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I'm replaying The Cave again. It's another story where, at the end, it's closing time at the attraction and time for me to take a literal key and get things ready for shutdown. And also it's never made clear if anything is real or imaginary, how exactly the characters got here, whether they're living or dead, etc...

 

I think Ron has a meta idea in his head that has leaked out in various video game endings recently, and there's nothing wrong with that.

 

Ask me at the right time, and I can see Thimbleweed Park as "life has no meaning but we live it anyway and that's the right thing to do".

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2 hours ago, BaronGrackle said:

I'm replaying The Cave again. It's another story where, at the end, it's closing time at the attraction and time for me to take a literal key and get things ready for shutdown. And also it's never made clear if anything is real or imaginary, how exactly the characters got here, whether they're living or dead, etc...

 

I think Ron has a meta idea in his head that has leaked out in various video game endings recently, and there's nothing wrong with that.

 

Ask me at the right time, and I can see Thimbleweed Park as "life has no meaning but we live it anyway and that's the right thing to do".

Don't even remember that.. is that the ending of a specific character or something that happens when you finished with everyone...? Been a while.

 

Interesting to have that theme recur so often.

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3 hours ago, Gins said:

Don't even remember that.. is that the ending of a specific character or something that happens when you finished with everyone...? Been a while.

 

Interesting to have that theme recur so often.


At the very end, after going down and down deeper into The Cave throughout the course of the game, you somehow end up back at the entrance gift shop (similar to going deeper and deeper into the Monkey Head until you arrive at Melee again). The worker on shift gives you a large key to go in the backroom and get items of heart's desire to replace the three items of heart's desire that YOUR team wants. You go through a section you already went through when the game began, only now it's closing time. Death spike pits are disassembled and packed into boxes... spotlights are suddenly here at certain places... the beautiful waterfall is now lava on the verge of cataclysm... the usual closing time stuff.
 

You grab the new items and trade them at gift shop, each team member getting the object their heart desires most. Characters who hold on to this object end up trapped in the Cave and can be seen dead in the next playthrough, while characters who give the object back are able to leave.

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4 hours ago, BaronGrackle said:


At the very end, after going down and down deeper into The Cave throughout the course of the game, you somehow end up back at the entrance gift shop (similar to going deeper and deeper into the Monkey Head until you arrive at Melee again). The worker on shift gives you a large key to go in the backroom and get items of heart's desire to replace the three items of heart's desire that YOUR team wants. You go through a section you already went through when the game began, only now it's closing time. Death spike pits are disassembled and packed into boxes... spotlights are suddenly here at certain places... the beautiful waterfall is now lava on the verge of cataclysm... the usual closing time stuff.
 

You grab the new items and trade them at gift shop, each team member getting the object their heart desires most. Characters who hold on to this object end up trapped in the Cave and can be seen dead in the next playthrough, while characters who give the object back are able to leave.

Rings a bell, thanks for the refresher!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi everyone! I'm still playing catch-up so forgive me if this was mentioned earlier. I have 25 pages left to read in this thread.

 

Something I haven't seen mentioned anywhere else yet: The END OF THE GAME is what they used to PROMOTE THE GAME. They created an actual Melee Island set for Gamescom, and everyone was playing around, taking photos and enjoying the whimsy and excitement of a new Monkey Island game, completely unaware that they were walking around in the final room. That must have been super surreal for the people who knew!

 

Ok. Back to playing catch up...excited to read everyone's theories!

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1 hour ago, lucasartsfans said:

Hi everyone! I'm still playing catch-up so forgive me if this was mentioned earlier. I have 25 pages left to read in this thread.

 

Something I haven't seen mentioned anywhere else yet: The END OF THE GAME is what they used to PROMOTE THE GAME. They created an actual Melee Island set for Gamescom, and everyone was playing around, taking photos and enjoying the whimsy and excitement of a new Monkey Island game, completely unaware that they were walking around in the final room. That must have been super surreal for the people who knew!

 

Ok. Back to playing catch up...excited to read everyone's theories!

I think we talked about it somewhere in the thread when people first made the connection. It’s pretty great!!!

 

also welcome to the thread :)

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I was thunderstruck by the ending as well, but after attempting to jot down my feelings several times, decided to take a step back and just let the thing sink in. Now I think that I should have seen it coming. Of course Ron would double down on the bewildering ending of LeChuck's Revenge. There was no other way.

 

And it's more complex than I thought at first. We're not switching from the reality of the Monkey Island stories back to the frame story. We're switching to kind of an interlude reality, with which Guybrush trolls his son in the same way that Ron trolled us all those years ago. Boybrush becomes the fans, the fans become Boybrush; and Ron becomes Guybrush just like Guybrush becomes Ron. All too fittingly, Guybrush-Ron would hastily concoct an alternative one sentence ending after Guybrush/the fans tell him what they would have liked to see. But that is of course no kind of "satisfying" ending within the self contained reality of the Monkey Island series.

 

Like many others, when I hear fans lamenting how the ending of Return destroyed the Monkey Island series, I have to think of the same criticism voiced about LeChuck's Revenge. It's actually true: The Monkey Island series was destroyed back in 1991. The hole that Ron tore into the fabric of his creation's reality could not possibly be closed. LeChuck's Revenge made a sequel impossible, and more than that, even undesirable.

 

... ... it's still the best game of the series and has spawned no less than four sequels. 😎

 

Maybe it's not so much the ending of Monkey Island 2 that Ron wanted to recreate, maybe it's what happened to the series after that final and all breaking ending. A new tree arising from salted earth. The new steward of the Monkey Island series will have to honor the series' spirit yet they will be utterly forced to completely ignore the authoritative ending of Monkey Island 6, the final word of its original creator. What a delicious irony. 

 

Whoever takes up the baton to conduct these characters in the future, I'll definitely be in the audience. The monkeys are listening.

Edited by Vainamoinen
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The Prelude was what shocked me. Watching the end cutscene to MI2 rewritten... seeing Booty Island again, in park form, including the spitting contest grounds... Guybrush appearing and teasing "Boybrush" about changing the endings?

 

The Prelude told me not to trust MI2. I inferred this also meant not to trust MI1, and was encouraged not to trust MI1 when Carla's old house had literal playground equipment Guybrush remembered fondly!

 

I played the entire game AFTER the revelation that the previous games weren't reliable narratives at all. So no, the ending wasn't a shock for me. :)

 

LAFITTE'S ANCHOR!!

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On 1/11/2023 at 4:30 PM, ThunderPeel2001 said:

 

What's this?


The museum is where Carla's old house was. In the yard is playground equipment, and Guybrush comments he used to love playing on these things.

Edited by BaronGrackle
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