Jump to content


Return to Monkey Island 🚨GAME-WIDE🚨 Spoiler Chat

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!



Recommended Posts

I suppose the thing is that the secret is there if you really want it.


If they'd revealed it in MI1 I could absolutely buy it being another t-shirt, and it's right there for you to get. Sure it's not profound, it's absolutely silly but it's there if you really really need closure on it.


But it's just that the game then invites you to find meaning in it beyond the narrow confines of knowing what the secret is, it invites you to agree that it wasn't really ever the point, and to value the unknown.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Everything is still much too fresh in my head to take a step back on the game, its end, and even its importance. It's so meta. It's gonna be exciting.

After the slap I received during the prologue of the game, I believe that the reflection that transpires from the fifth chapter deserves to be digested at length. What a fantastic game. What a great reflection on 30 years of gaming, on our expectations as players, and on the SECRET :)

Small question nevertheless, I knew that Neil Druckmann (Naughty Dog) had to interpret a character in the game. He appears, moreover, in the end credits. But does anyone know which character he plays exactly?



  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like a lot of people here, I initally had the "what the hell" reaction.


And I thought about it, for several hours and up to this morning. Then the whole thing grew on me, it just clicked! I wrote some scattered notes about the ending, which I'd like to share with you:


So, what did I gather from all of this? I think that the secret (in a way) is that the Monkey Island saga are Guybrush's adventures, as told by him to his son (kind of like how it happens on the TV show How I Met Your Mother, which means: exaggerating them and changing their details when he feels like doing so) .


This reasoning allows for every single game - even the monkey head becoming a robot - to be canon (if we really want to talk about canon anyway). The games are just a visualization of Guybrush's adventures, but in the way he tells them to his son: e.g., EFMI happened, but some details might not be necessarily real.


The actual secret that Guybrush found that day might not be important (and in fact it might have been fairly disappointing to him, a thing which brought him out of the "loop" of the obsession over this fabled thing). But the bottomline is that this is a father teaching a valuable lesson to his son: if you build up exaggerate expectations over something, it will NEVER live up the hype and you might risk obsessing over it endlessly.


Of course there's still some room for interpretation, IMHO; the very ending might even be literal, in the sense that Monkey Island stories might be:

  • In part tales of Guybrush in his very early youth, lived in the times in which the very concept of pirating was starting to go out of fashion and "modernity" was starting to sink in;
  • In part outright fiction which he made up for his son while working (after his youth) as a flooring inspector for a pirate themed amusement park.

This reasoning might even justify the fact that Elaine found the map to a treasure, just to help him relive those same very old adventures.


Finally, the final decision about what the secret is up to the player: what was the secret? Gold and jewels? Friendship? It's better not to know it? Anyway we decide, this choice will directly influence the post-credit scene, which might actually might constitute the only things which we are sure that really happened in that world.


Again, we are the one to decide what really happens! We can even re-open the "employees only" door with Stan's keys and take the backwards path for a different ending with a different post-credit scene (Guybrush and Elaine sailing on a ship), which might just mean: Guybrush didn't want to believe/know the secret, so he just bailed on it, with the consequence that the MI stories are real and not some kind of metaphore.


I think this is a clever way to try and make everyone happy.


  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

30 minutes ago, Laserschwert said:

Mind. Blown.


At this point, I think the puzzlemaster Lynchian/Terry Gilliam interpretation would be that Guybrush was an orphan who took solace in imagining pirate adventures at the Big Whoop amusement park, and everything — EVERYTHING — else is a defensive construct of his mind, including Elaine and his family. Only now he's trapped and can't cope without the fantasy, and lives life as a tripped out semi-vegetable in a late-stage Sam Lowry dreamworld. Whenever he gets a little too close to reality, things start to fray and fall apart because he just can't handle it. The choice to shut down the carnival and move on with his life ends with him looking peaceful — completely alone on the bench — because he's finally reached a level of comfort with the truth and he and his mind are all there ever was. But if he refuses that reality and turns around, he's fully embraced the fantasy, and sails off with his fictional love in his fictional piratey world.


I don't think that's it. But I like it 🙂

Edited by Dmnkly
  • Like 4
  • Chef's Kiss 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/20/2022 at 6:48 AM, demone said:

I think the true secret of Monkey Island is that it's a series of stories that Guybrush came up with based off his own experiences in an amusement park that Stan owned (he visited it as a kid and always kept coming back even as an adult, married and as a flooring inspector), with Stan tweaking the story and animatronics every now and then as the years went on (very much like the POTC ride after the movies came out). Guybrush used the park as inspiration to tell his son exciting stories. The Secret is something to keep the stories going on forever. Guybrush in his youth was truly an orphan and found solace in the amusement park to become a pirate, met Elaine, perhaps tried to defend her from a bully named Chucky/Charles, though she was already defending herself quite capably. He meshed those experiences with the park attractions.


Now then, as for my own personal take more ingrained with the "fiction"; I think the answers you can give kiddo Guybrush is what you believe as the true ending; the answer that I finally settled on (I replayed my save many times) was that Elaine was right and it didn't matter what the secret was. Her cutscenes observing Guybrush's destructive actions and the conversations she had with Guybrush while walking were too compelling. LeChuck, his crew, Madison and her partners, were all killing each other by the end and Guybrush did so much damage in his own quest. I like to think, in the end, Guybrush realized it didn't matter anymore, while LeChuck was enveloped by it. Guybrush has everything he ever needed. Sure, I would've liked to have seen my take with own eyes, but then, that would've only been the ending I wanted to see then, wouldn't it. LeChuck was consumed by the secret and Guybrush settled down to have a family.



Oh, I didn't realize you posted this, but I frankly prefer your take over mine!

Link to comment
Share on other sites



(P.S. I played on Hard Mode without the Writers Cut on)


- Loved every moment of it.

- Curse-Tales officially represented in the games' scrapbook. Right off the bat, the canon debate has been resolved!

- As mentioned in the other thread, I can't remember the last time I've been this surprised by a twist in a work of fiction. An absolutely genius way of threading together the games and recontextualising them in a way that helps the story rather than hinders it.

- Would've preferred the option to use the middle mouse button to open the inventory. It felt like an unnecessary step to navigate to the bottom-left of the screen every time I wanted to see my items.

- Voiceover work was exceptional. Probably the best and most consistently great cast since Escape. Returning performers were practically all on their A-game and the few re-cast actors (Otis, The Pirate Leaders, The Chef, etc.) also did great jobs.

- Jess Harnell was thankfully better than he appeared in that first preview. Great comic timing and an appropriate amount of malice in his voice. Would I have loved and preferred Boen, totally, but hearing the age in some of these performers' voices that do feature in this game (particularly Neil Ross, Denny Delk and, surprisingly to me, Rob Paulsen) it may be the case that Boen just doesn't have the voice that he used to, sadly, which could be why he passed on the game. Either way, Harnell does a good job here filling in for Earl.

- Artwork and animation worked wonderfully in-game. In still images, I can see how the art wouldn't do it for everybody, but in the context of the game, the LIFE in this art and animation, the background motion, the colours, the mood, etc. is just wonderful.

- Parts I through III, I practically breezed through. The puzzle solutions just came naturally to me, only having to use hints a couple of times, which I wasn't expecting, and I really felt that the game was going to be over before I knew it. Part IV thankfully was more difficult and longer, and I had to use the hintbook a few more times, which is a far better alternative in this day and age to quitting the game to find a walkthrough.

- MI1: THREE trials. MI2: FOUR map pieces. ReMI: FIVE keys.

- Soundtrack was largely one/two giant tracks running through each part/island, switching up the instruments in each room in an iMuse fashion. Feel like this may have been a method to keep the track numbers down but the interactivity flowing, which I think worked out really well for a game. Admittedly, I did find the reprises of the original tracks more memorable than the new music, but as this was only my first playthrough, I'll let the tracks sit in my mind first! Standout tracks for me so far were LeChuck's ship and the Brrr Muda town hall.

- With Morgan LeFlay being represented, not only in the scrapbook but also a dialogue-tree puzzle (and an author of one of Carla's books also having the last name "LeFlay") I was genuinely expecting her to make a surprise appearance by the end. Was low-key surprised when she didn't.

- I still had *lots* of trivia cards that I hadn't found at the end. Either I'm bad at searching or the remaining cards can be found across the other modes?

- The scene with the former pirate leaders on the streets of Melee never played for me. I imagine this is a Writers Cut scene (or potentially Easy Mode?)  I also don't believe I ever got the scene with Elaine lowering herself into the pit.

- Some of the puzzles seemed to go nowhere? There was no reason to free Otis at the beginning (which is probably why it was the gameplay preview video in retrospect) barring getting an achievement, but I also didn't ultimately need to give Putra a promotion. I thought that might sway her vote to go to Monkey Island towards me, but ultimately it wasn't needed.

- Zero reference to the Voodoo Lady's true allegiance. I totally get why they skipped over Herman being Elaine's grandfather (we had one very small potential reference of "Herman Toothrot?" "I think so?!", and even Elaine refers to him as "Herman Toothrot" at one point) but I really thought the Voodoo Lady's allegiance would be followed through in Return, given what a big deal it was at the end of Tales. It also seemed like a Ron-esque idea as well. Maybe this is just something we're supposed to assume resolved itself in-between games.

- I need to think about the ending some more. I... think I get it... XD  Where the opening had my jaw dropped, the ending had me sitting in silence contemplating what just happened. And I feel that's probably the point, and I was expecting some degree of ambiguity about the secret anyway, and I'd partially joked the other day about the game leaving it up to interpretation. It's not *quite* the out-of-game experience that Thimbleweed Park's ending was, but it's definitely on the same family tree.


Anyway, yes. I told myself I'd break up the playthroughs, but now that there's a writers cut AND an easy mode? That changes things... Going to replay very soon, I think, and complete my thoughts...



P.S. Take a look at the Steam achievements to see other things that you can try. Nine of mine are hidden until they're discovered in-game.

Edited by fentongames
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 minutes ago, fentongames said:

Some of the puzzles seemed to go nowhere? There was no reason to free Otis at the beginning (which is probably why it was the gameplay preview video in retrospect) barring getting an achievement, but I also didn't ultimately need to give Putra a promotion. I thought that might sway her vote to go to Monkey Island towards me, but ultimately it wasn't needed.

You needed to give her a promotion in order to get her to make Scorched Alaska, not for the vote.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 minutes ago, fentongames said:

Also, what was the "Previously On" feature supposed to do? I was expecting it to give me some sort of recap when I re-loaded a saved game, but as far as I know, it didn't do anything.

Apparently that's the exact purpose, but it should trigger when you don't play for at least 2-3 days

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Concerning my head canon now for the Voodoo Lady's agenda, I think it was to entice Guybrush and LeChuck to finally start a quest to discover the secret. 


She was bound by contract not to reveal anything, so she went through a much more roundabout and manipulative route. Putting them through quest after quest, indirectly helping in LeChuck resurrections (perhaps even directly resurrecting him after Tales by using his imprisoned pox essence) and Guybrush's victories, until one of them finally said "Screw it, the Secret is all that's left."


The irony is though, even she didn't know it was just a t-shirt (leave it to Stan) and finally lost interest and passion for its discovery once her business begun to fail. She finally revealed her name and then retired, perhaps looking for De Cava. Maybe Guybrush and LeChuck's battles taught her something about what mattered more. 

Edited by demone
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The ending reminded by a ton of Pan’s Labrynth. 

if you haven’t seen it (sorry spoiler ahead) there is this moment at the end where you decide if this fantastical world of creatures is a way for the girl to handle the awfulness of what is going on around her…. Or an actual escape to a fantasy world. 

the fact you can go back out with tells me that. 

Also it seems like this ending (which I love) allows more games to be created if ever wanted to. 

I cannot tell you how much I have just lived this game the past couple days. I wanted it to last forever. I have just been so starved for a game to feed me an amazing story and humor like this. Im going to replay it about 55 times to make sure I get everything. 

fantastic work all around. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey all,


Thanks for keeping this community alive all these years. I am decades old reader, but just realized I either never made a forums account, or it was old one I forgot. So now or never I guess?


Just finished playing the game, and while I was expecting it to be great, I didn't expect it to be that good. They elevated the game on all levels I feel. As @KestrelPi said, they way they tied the story is prefect, and I can't think of any better option. I was wondering how long it took them to reach such an elegant solution that continues the story, while keeping some things open to interpretation and still paying respect to the sequels.


The UI and gameplay were clear winners here. Best I recall in an adventure game. 


The puzzles were great and fun, not too vague hard not too easy. And the hint system made it possible to progress without feeling someone is holding your hands. I only had to use it once, and it turns out for an action I thought I tried. 


I always enjoyed moving from one island to another in MI2 Chapter 2. Here when I thought game was approaching its ened, they introduced multiple new islands, but mostly of very limited scope. There were some locations on Terror Island that were never used. My guess is they had plans for it that got scraped? It still added to the horror feeling of the island. And the music and sound there was stunning. 


Funny I was thinking yesterday I will make me a t-shirt that says "I know the secret of Monkey Island". So the ending made me laugh so hard, and now I want the official merchandise, which for obvious reasons they won't make so soon. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@JakeWould it be too soon to start an achievements thread? There are several achievements in particular (free Wally!) that seem pretty involved and some are even hidden (no description). I have a feeling some of these result in the different ending variations Ron was talking about. The "don't believe one" appears to be one.


Not even sure if this is a good idea, but thought I would bring it up, because some seem pretty involved and require things done by certain points in the game. 


Regardless, can't wait to get back to this game and start focusing on them now that I saw the full list. They really made this a living and breathing world. 

Edited by demone
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I feel like the best thing this game does as far as the future of Monkey Island goes is...


... well, if this is it, if this is the last one, if that's the last shot and we're done, I think that's absolutely fine. I'll take it. It's a great send-off.


... but if there will be more, perhaps not Ron's but other peoples, it no longer has to dance around the source material. It no longer has to tiptoe past the end of MI2, or make vague allusions while being reluctant to commit to anything that might interfere with Ron's original vision.


This game says that the mystery, the inconsistency, the ambiguity is all part of the fun, and that you don't actually have to answer the questions, and you don't have to avoid them either. You can answer the same question in two ways, you can ask new questions, it's okay. There's an overarching vibe to Monkey Island which, if I were to put it into a single word would maybe be 'layered' and this game gives you a little glimpse at some of those layers and then turns to the audience, AND any future creator of Monkey Island and says... now, have fun with that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Jake pinned this topic
  • Jake unpinned this topic

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...