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The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition faithfully re-imagines the internationally-acclaimed classic game (originally released in 1990) for original and new audiences alike.
After years in the wasteland, it seems the humble point-and-click adventure is the popular kid on the block again all of a sudden. Make no mistake, The Secret of Monkey Island is still a joyful piece of gaming history that's lost none of its swashbuckling charm over the years. It looks and sounds great but unresponsive, unintuitive controls make the whole experience more frustrating than fun. Subtle environmental effects are inexplicably missing but the new characters and hand-drawn backgrounds look lovely. Typically great voice work from LucasArts and a sublime reworking of Monkey Island's score make this a treat for the ears.
It's an untouched classic that sadly would have scored much higher if it wasn't for the unnecessarily frustrating interface.
This is where the remake, The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition, comes in and it falls to me to see if Monkey Island is still a good game by today's standards. Diving in for the first time is great - it starts off showing the old school loading image, then gently overlays and replaces it with the new graphics. The plot of the game is based around a lanky lad with pale skin and long blonde hair who looks like he could be a sterotypical viking if only he wasn't so scrawny. Scooting around Melee Island to do the quests is plenty fun, with the random twists and turns of any typical adventure game thrown in the mix - although nothing too convoluted to stop a player progressing. The writing is certainly continually humorous, but only rarely laugh out loud funny if I'm totally honest. Despite the graphical overhaul the animation is still pretty rough in the remastered mode, to the point where it looks just awkward in some scenes because the characters don't move their hands when they talk or have any decent idle animations.
Characters who don't move their arms when they talk look fine when everything is all pixellated and indistinct, but when the image is stylised and crisp, it falls into the uncanny valley a tiny bit.
11 сентября 2009г.15K5версия для печатиВ последнее время все больше возрождается легендарных игровых серий. Video game information, credits, reviews, box covers, screenshots and more for 168 video game platforms from 1971 to date!
The game is brought into the modern era with an all new re-imagined contemporary art style, a re-mastered musical score, full voiceover, and an in-depth hint system to help players through the gamea€™s side-splitting puzzles. You learn how Guybrush and Elane meet for the first time and get yourself into great adventures in a graphic who fits into the time.

Telltale Games is doing its amazing episodic thing, indie developers are having a field day with their own foul-mouthed take on the genre and LucasArts - the granddaddy of the graphic adventure - has finally opened arms and accepted its prodigal son back into the fold. It's hard to knock the Special Edition from a content perspective too, with LucasArts doing a brilliant job updating this bona fide classic. I don't mean that in the sense that my facial hair isn't fluffy like a kitten, but more that I'm not a big Monkey Island fan-boy. Remakes are often regarded as being the spawn of Satan of course, as they bastardise the original to conform to new trends in gameplay.
His name is Guybrush Threepwood and at the start of the game all we know about him is that he has come to Melee Island, deep in the Carribbean, because he wants to be a pirate.
The puzzles aren't hugely taxing (though Joe would claim otherwise, having taken five years to finish the game the first time around) and see you getting involved in all sorts of escapades on your pirate-y endeavour. While I thought the voice acting was pretty well done too, it's likely that fans of the original will likely claim otherwise and fall in to the the-book-is-better-than-the-film syndrome.
It feels like Lucasarts is trying to take the remake far enough to interest fans of the original game, but doesn't want to risk losing them by moving too far from the source.
Purists will also delight in the ability to seamlessly switch between the updated hand-drawn re-imagining and the original classic version.The game's twisty plot leads our naive hero on a hilarious, swash-buckling search for the fabled secret of Monkey Island. It's just a shame that while this diminutive refurb mostly looks and sounds great, the shadow of sloppy porting effortlessly transforms this iPhone version into a fiddly, frustrating mess.
Fortunately, you don't have to grab a Wiimote and dance around like an idiot, or spend obscene amounts of cash on a new graphics card for this. It's like they do on CSI - magically increasing the resolution and adding pixel fidelity on an image - zoom and enhance!
Guybrush gets a stint in the Circus, acquires free T-Shirts, learns a load of witty insults and wins the heart of the lady Governess - though only moments before she gets spirited away by the spirit of the pirate captain Lechuck, whose ghost haunts the sea and has kept all the local pirates land-locked.
For us lazier people, the voices are a welcome addition and mostly fit the characters, however I personally can't say I enjoy the voice of Guybrush that much - he just doesn't seem to fit well - especially when compared to other strong adventure game male leads like George Stobart from Broken Sword.
The reason for this seems to be that they have identical animations to the original version, just with redone artwork, which kind of suggests that Lucasarts didn't take the graphical overhaul far enough.
It's a commendable aim in some respects, I suppose - but as a newcomer to the game I'd really like to see a Remastered version that looked a bit more natural and leave the Retro mode for those who just want to bask in nostalgia. Monkey Island: Special Edition offers an optional graphical overhaul and interface (plus a few other bits, like spoken dialogue), but the actual content is the same as before - to the point where it clearly references the original even as you load the game. After chatting to the three commodores, Guybrush gets sent on three quests of pirate-esque calibre - dig up some loot, steal some loot and learn how to sword fight - or, well, insult sword fight.

The good news is that you can easily turn on subtitles and cancel the volume, or just switch between Retro and Remastered mode at any point just by pressing F10. Ultimately, we'd suggest you either hold off for an update or look elsewhere unless you absolutely need a portable version of Monkey Island in your collection. It's not that I dislike the genre though - I actually loved the Broken Sword games, for example. It's just that I could never be bothered with all that reading and Monkey Island pre-dated most of the 'talkie' adventure games by a few years. This, the first entry in the classic series, follows the improbably named Guybrush Threepwood as he sets out to become a mighty pirate, thwart the evil undead Captain Le Chuck and find romance in the shapely form of Governor Elaine Marley.
Many of the puzzles are illogic, most of them just plain.The graphics are too simple, with static backgrounds and bad animations. Well, it's been given a gorgeous hand-painted face lift with lavish new sprites and luscious backgrounds to replace the charming, if aging visuals of yore. It's also had the full voice treatment, with some talented actors bringing life to the previously silent text-only yarn, plus a superb aural update to Monkey Island's already memorable score. Unfortunately, this slavish adherence to a bygone day carries over to the game's interface - which sports none of the refinements of later LucasArts adventures. Despite the potentially perfect marriage of point-and-click adventuring and touch-screen gaming, LucasArts's inaugural iPhone offering is ludicrously unintuitive, suggesting we've been lumbered with a quick and dirty port.
While interactions and inventory are easily accessible, inelegant design choices seriously mar what would be an otherwise quality experience. Hitting hotspots or even simply moving around environments is a painfully protracted experience as a result. What's more, the game frequently confuses pinch mechanics intended to give you a zoomed in view of the scene with the two-finger swipe command designed to switch to retro view. Even the pause menu is mapped to an unnecessarily finicky tilt command when a simple button would suffice.
Simply put, despite the quality and pedigree of the source material and its loving facelift, this portable package is disappointingly unrefined.

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