Best Third-Person PC Adventure: Tales of Monkey Island
We never thought we’d see the day a brand new Monkey Island game was released. With most of the adventure design legends long gone from LucasArts and the company seemingly finished with the genre forever, hope seemed slim. But neither death nor voodoo curses nor corporate indifference can keep a good franchise down, and so it was that Tales of Monkey Island sprang to life this year, this time in the hands of Telltale Games. Of course, the minute the new episodic series was announced, the fears followed soon after: could it possibly live up to the legacy of its Golden Era predecessors?
Here are three words to answer that question: Aggie Award winner.
Even over tough competition, Guybrush and crew’s long-awaited return to prime time is our pick for best third-person PC game of the year. The series stayed true to its roots while also forging new territory, providing a hearty dose of fan service without sinking too far into nostalgia. Story-wise, the stakes were raised with each installment, making the five chapters feel like an epic adventure befitting a Mighty Pirate™. While the gameplay might not have induced the kind of hotline-calling frustration of the older titles, it still had that trademark Monkey Island wackiness, and the game’s more serious moments were balanced out with an equal amount of absurdity. After five straight months of new Monkey Island content following nearly a decade of deprivation, it’s hard to stop injecting “Arrr” into everyday conversation and go back to our normal lives. Good thing Tales’ ending left the door wide open for a sequel…
Runners-Up: Machinarium, Emerald City Confidential, Runaway: A Twist of Fate
Readers’ Choice: Tales of Monkey Island
Much like the staff vote, this category was like a clash of titans. With individual Aggies practically even, Tales of Monkey Island and Machinarium were destined for a final confrontation among readers at some point, and it was Telltale’s piratey adventure that came out on top. We waited a long time for the return of this beloved franchise, and it didn’t disappoint. That said, lucky for Guybrush and company this isn’t the Best Third-Robot award…
Runners-Up: Machinarium, Runaway: A Twist of Fate
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Next up: Best Adventure of 2009... the envelope, please!