Incredible as it may seem, it is very close to the launch of Return to Monkey Island, a title that exactly thirty years after Ron Gilbert’s departure from LucasArts will once again bear the signature of the legendary creator of the franchise (by the way, we had the pleasure of interviewing Ron Gilbert to talk about Return to Monkey Island) . Since the developers of The Curse of Monkey Island and its followers had rightly embarked on a different track from what Gilbert himself had in mind, the upcoming title will not be some sort of “Monkey Island 6”, but on the contrary. will start exactly where Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge left off, in order to propose the developments initially planned by the game designer and resume the various points left too long in suspense. To prepare newbies for this new Guybrush Threepwood adventure and refresh the memories of fans of the first hour, we have prepared a summary of the first two episodes of the series.
The Secret of Monkey Island
Guybrush Threepwood is a young man who longs to become the most fearsome pirate in the Caribbean. Since these he has no special abilities, if not to hold his breath for about ten minutes, the aspiring buccaneer will have to overcome a thousand difficulties and as many extravagant characters along the route that will lead him to realize his dream. Perhaps.
Determined to become a feared and respected privateer, in the opening lines of The Secret of Monkey Island, our unlikely (but still willing) hero lands on Mêlée, the capital of the Three Islands Archipelago, which also includes Booty and Plunder. Local leaders then subject him to three different tests, so that the boy who came from who knows where can prove his worth: Guybrush will first have to win a sword fight –based mostly on insults– against Carla, that is the swordmaster of the island, to locate a hidden treasure and steal the many-handed idol kept in the villa of Elaine Marley, the beautiful and enterprising governor of Mêlée, Booty and Plunder, as well as the nephew of the previous governor, Horatio Torquemada Marley. Supported by the characters known while carrying out the three tasks, including a voodoo priestess, Stan the used boat salesman, the prisoner named Otis, and not least Carla and Elaine herself, with whom the novice falls madly in love, Guybrush explores the whole island and learns of the stories concerning thethe ghost of LeChucka notorious pirate apparently deceased in the middle of an expedition to the mysterious Monkey Island and aimed at winning the love of the charming governor Marley.
While the protagonist completes the tasks assigned to him, the Isle of Mêlée is suddenly stormed by LeChuck and his crew of undead, who after sowing panic among the inhabitants kidnap Elaine and take her to their secret refuge. to Monkey Island. Determined to save her, Guybrush buys an authentic bath tub from the eccentric Stan and, after having also enrolled in the crew Carla, Otis and Meathook (a pot-bellied man, whose severed hands have been replaced with metal hooks), sets sail for the legendary island.
It is here that the fearless Threepwood discovers a village of cannibals engaged in a heated dispute with Herman Toothrot, an elderly shipwrecked on Monkey Island about twenty years earlier and who over time has lost part of his memories, as well as health. mental. With the dispute between the two sides resolved, Guybrush agrees to retrieve a magical voodoo root from the ship of the evil LeChuck and deliver it to the cannibals, who they reward his precious help with a bottle containing an elixir capable of destroying ghosts.
Convinced that he has victory in hand, Threepwood then sets off to the place where the ghost captain’s ship was moored, where he realizes that he has returned to Mêlée Island to marry Elaine in the local church. Enraged, Guybrush also promptly returns to the capital of the Three Islands Archipelago and interrupts the wedding, unwillingly sabotaging the escape plan concocted by the governor Marley. LeChuck and the young Threepwood then face off in an island-wide, all-out battle that culminates only when Guybrush sprays his rival with the concoction he received from the cannibals, destroying the specter. Watching the fireworks from the explosion of LeChuck, Guybrush and Elaine they finally reveal the feelings they have for each other and become a coupleignoring that their troubles are not over at all.
Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge
Set several months after the undead corsair’s defeat, the tale of Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge opens on Scabb Island, where Guybrush Threepwood is looking for the incredible Big Whoop treasure. Intent on putting together a crew, our man discovers that Largo LeGrande, i.e. the former first officer of LeChuck, has placed an embargo on the entire island, preventing anyone who is there from taking to the sea.
Visiting the shop run by the voodoo priestess who helped him on his previous adventure and retrieving the materials she requested, the blond buccaneer comes into possession of a voodoo doll to use against Largo. In the course of their confrontation, however, Guybrush makes a very serious mistake and shows his rival LeChuck’s beard, which Largo promptly steals and uses to recall his captain from the realm of the dead. From his fortress on the island, a LeChuck turned zombie immediately swears revenge against Threepwood, while the object of his anger learns from the Voodoo Lady that the only way to get rid of the undead once and for all is to find the Big treasure. Whoop. Having discovered the names of the four freebooters who, after identifying the treasure, created a map with its precise location, Guybrush therefore charters the ship led by Captain Dread (a lone pirate) and searches the islands of Phatt, Scabb and Booty, where he assumes the four parts of the map are hidden.
Landed on the first, the privateer is arrested and imprisoned by order of Governor Phatt, a greedy and obese dictator who would like to reach out to the bounty LeChuck placed on Guybrush’s head. Escaped from his custody, Threepwood then heads for Booty, where he meets again Stan, the boat salesman who had cheated him in the previous game, and above all he runs into his beloved Elaine Marley, who only a few months earlier left him in the lurch because disappointed by the pirate.
Although this claims that their relationship was a big mistake, a Guybrush still in love almost manages to convince her to offer him another chance; Unfortunately for our hero, however, the woman realizes that her return and subsequent rapprochement it is solely aimed at getting hold of his grandfather’s piece of mapHoratio Torquemada Marley.
Overcoming a thousand ups and downs and activities that include spitting and drinking competitions, a Mardi Gras party, a rigged gambling and not least the temporary resurrection of the dead, Guybrush somehow manages to reassemble the treasure map and, with the ‘help from Wally (a tiny cartographer characterized by red hair and constantly dressed in a blue apron), determines that the Big Whoop treasure is hidden on Dinky Island.
Having escaped the umpteenth death trap orchestrated by LeChuck, Threepwood accidentally causes his fortress to explode and accidentally finds himself stranded on Dinky Island, which is the place he should have reached, where he reunites with the forgetful castaway Herman Toothrot, who in the meantime has self-proclaimed lord of the uninhabited island. Guided by a talking parrot, ours crosses a labyrinthine jungle and, having reached the site where Big Whoop is supposed to be buried, uses dynamite to unearth it.
As expected, however, the pirate’s plan backfires, so much so that the filibuster finds himself hanging from a rope with one hand, while with the other he holds the treasure chest tightly. Upon hearing the explosion from her villa on Booty Island, Elaine decides to investigate the incident and upon her arrival, three days later, she finds her ex-boyfriend still dangling, only to be told how the hell he got into. that very funny situation. Having no alternatives, Guybrush recapitulates his recent misadventures, but once he reaches the end of his story, the rope that has held him for days and days gives way under his weight, causing him to fall into an artificial and rather deep pit.
Awakened within an underground network of tunnels, the boy is joined by the arch enemy LeChuck, who tortures him with a defective voodoo doll. Taking advantage of the malfunction of the torture instrument in the tunnels, Threepwood advances into the tunnels and, to the player’s surprise, locates a first aid station, a “lost parents” area with the skeletal remains of his father and mother, and finally a mysterious elevator that leads to Mêlée Island. Gathering the tools needed to create a LeChuck voodoo doll in turn, the pirate snatches a doll from his opponent, who in a blatant parody of the ending of LeChuck. Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back claims to be his older brother, Chuckie.
Their absurd reunion is soon interrupted by a worker, according to whom the two “boys” should not be in that place: suddenly rejuvenated, the two brothers come out of the tunnel and, having found their parents, they realize they are in a large amusement park called “Big Woop”. While the player is driven to wonder if the entire saga is not the brainchild of a child obsessed with piracy, Guybrush is confused.
Elsewhere, meanwhile, Elaine wonders if her ex-boyfriend has not been hit by some curse from LeChuck, who not by chance turns his gaze towards the viewer in the final scene of Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge.
Released in 1997, The Curse of Monkey Island revealed that the strange events just described were really the result of a spell by the evil pirate, but since its making has not enjoyed the participation of Ron Gilbert, fans for years and years they wondered about the true meaning of the scene set in the amusement park.
Since Return to Monkey Island will be set immediately after the conclusion of LeChuck’s Revenge, the mysterious question that remained unsolved for over two decades could find a concrete solution September 19, 2022, when the new episode of the franchise will arrive on PC, Mac and Nintendo Switch.