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Tales of Monkey Island swing into action in July

No need to pinch yourselves, Monkey Island fans. The long-hoped-for next installment of the immensely popular franchise is about to become reality, as LucasArts and Telltale Games announced today that a new episodic series called Tales of Monkey Island will be launched next month.

While recent news of the Secret of Monkey Island remake was already welcome, "Monkey Island 5" was what fans have really been clamouring for since the release of 2000's Escape from Monkey Island. Rather than a full-fledged sequel, the new series to be developed by Telltale will follow the familiar monthly-release format of the studio's other episodic adventures. The "season" will consist of five episodes on PC and the Nintendo Wii, but unlike the relatively standalone Sam & Max, Strong Bad and Wallace & Gromit episodes, Tales of Monkey Island promises to be more of a serialized adventure. While still delivering a self-contained experience in each installment, the overall storyline will be a much more cohesive focus throughout the full season. According to the series FAQ, "during a heated battle with his nemesis, the evil pirate LeChuck, Guybrush unwittingly unleashes an insidious pox that rapidly spreads across the Caribbean, turning pirates into zombie-like monsters. The Voodoo Lady sends Guybrush in search of a legendary sea sponge to stem the epidemic, but this seemingly straightforward quest has surprises around every corner."

The PC debut of Tales of Monkey Island will be on July 7th, with the WiiWare release schedule still being finalized. PC adventurers can already pre-order the full season for $34.95 from the official website, and as a pre-order special, customers will get an exclusive DVD slipcover painted by Steve Purcell (the artist responsible for the box covers of Monkey Island 1 and 2 back in the day).

The irony of today's news is not lost on adventure fans, as Telltale was formed five years ago by several LucasArts veterans when the once-dominant company turned its back on the genre. Of course, that made it easy for LucasArts to find suitable talent for its franchise, and the fit should be a natural one for Telltale. We'll know more for sure very shortly, so stay tuned to Adventure Gamers for a first-hand look at Tales of Monkey Island from a pre-E3 demonstration.

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Community Comments

Latest comments (19 total)

I like the 3d interpretation of the characters, nice stuff, lots of appeal and charm, nice animation too, could be a little more extreme maybe. But the lighting and camera work are a bit so-so. All the camera cuts are pretty much all mid shots. A dramatic scene like this surely merits a couple of close-ups. The lighting too is a bit weak. Looking at the screenshots too. Look at the evocative sundrenched BGs from the original Monkey Island then compare with the beach screenshots from the new game. It is really a shame because the modelling work is top notch. Hopefully this will be addressed. Good luck Dev team, Them’s big boots to fill.

Jul 7, 2009

Guybrush is back!

This is simply put amazing news!
I’m sure the franchise is now in good hands.

The new president of Lucasarts sure has washed the company’s sins away with one swipe. Here’s hoping that Monkey Island will see a full game production at some point, but five episode series of short games is good to start the revival!

Oh man I’m so envious of Jake, Doug and Emily. They have seen this project evolving in the heart of Telltale with their own eyes.

Jun 9, 2009

@omnimoto

As long as there isn’t any Monkey Combat, I’d be alright with a series of MI4’s.  Though to me the high point of the series was MI3, both in style and in humor.  If MI3 could go on forever in a series… ahh life would be sweet.

Jun 3, 2009

“That, and the graphics have seemingly gotten worse since the last installment 9 years ago… Probably because the Wii holds them back.”

I’m not impressed by the graphics either, but I reckon it’s mostly a misjudged shading algorithm. Copying the TF2 shader would have been more fitting than applying this relatively realistic shading, I think.

Very much looking forward to the game though, I’ve bought it already. Smile

Jun 2, 2009

Never thought I’d see the day, but now, in hindsight, episodic adventures from Telltale are a perfect fit. Awesome!

Jun 2, 2009

I think I’m gonna faint!!!!!

OMG I’M SOOOOOO EXCITED!!!!

The Monkey Island games were what started my love of adventure games and I have been waiting on pins and needles for Lucasarts to finally see the big mistake they were making by vacating the adventure scene. The fact that they’re finally letting someone else take the reins on this beloved series is the best news I have heard in ages!!

I think I’m gonna cry!!!!

Jun 1, 2009

!!!!

EEEEEEEEE!

(runs to tell sibling)

(sibling is in shower)

(tells parents instead)

(parents fail to understand how momentous and joyous this news is)

(gets book and goes to wait for sibling to finish showering so I will have someone to SQUEE with, dammit)

EEEEEEE, I say! EEEEEEEE!!! :-D

Jun 1, 2009

Best. News. Ever.

Jun 1, 2009

These 3d graphics look awful. The problem is not so much with the game engine, but mainly with the art direction. They managed to get the licence of the most popular adventure series ever, and all they came up with, is this? Sorry but I’m not impressed.

The only way to make up for the lousy visuals and “episodic” format is to make one hell of a story, but the humor that goes with the MI series is not in the same vein as in Sam&Max;. And the fact that , as far as I know, Ron Gilbert has nothing to do with this makes me even less optimistic.

Jun 1, 2009

Dominic Armato doing Guybrush Threepwood’s voice again!

Jun 1, 2009

I LOVE Monkey Island but i’m a little worried about this… The remake of MI1 looks fantastic, but I hope this series isn’t going to be more of the same watered-down, rushed telltale nonsense that we’ve seen lately. They need DECENT writing with the same kind of humour as the first 3 games….  I guess i’m just concerned this is going to be like a series of MI4’s.

Jun 1, 2009

Awesome!! Best gaming news in a long time and it’s coming out so soon too!

Have to agree that Guybrush’s new look is haggard and almost “too pirate-y” for our wanna-be pirate protagonist.  That, and the graphics have seemingly gotten worse since the last installment 9 years ago… Probably because the Wii holds them back and simpler graphics allow them to create more content cheaply (the latter being a good thing Smile.

Complaints aside, I have complete confidence that Dominic Armato will again make everything hilarious and Telltale will continue to be great.  And there better be a healthy number of facial hair jokes about Guybrush’s miraculous new ability to grow a beard Tongue

Jun 1, 2009

Wellcome back Guybrush Threepwood! Smile

Jun 1, 2009

Fantastic news! Any idea if Ron Gilbert will be involved during the development? And what have LucasArts done exactly? Have they passed/sold the rights to Telltale or are they just in partnership?

I hope these episodes make their way to XBLA like Wallace & Gromit and Sam & Max. But if not, ah well. At least the Special Edition of Monkey Island 1 will be.

And i agree, Andrea, all we need now is for Telltale to join up with Jane and Activision/Blizzard for some Gabriel Knight episodes. ^^

Jun 1, 2009

This is the second most exciting news I’ve ever heard!
...after Beyond Good and Evil 2

Jun 1, 2009

Not thrilled with Guybrush’s new angular, slightly haggard, look… but the Voodoo Priestess looks good!  Hope Grossman’s taking the helm on this one!

Jun 1, 2009

I for one would want a high badget full game for the next monkey island not the same generic “cheap” 3d graphics in episodic form all over again…

Jun 1, 2009

Even if I’m not a fan of the series, I’m immensely happy and I’m going to buy every single episode and maybe even the whole series if they release it as a package…

... Now, if only a certain publisher will listen to this news and realize that an episodic series could be awesomely wonderful, maybe we can also get the fourth installment on another much beloved, supernatural-themed series Grin

Jun 1, 2009

*blinks* ...

If this is all the news E3 had to offer, I could die happy. The Monkey Island franchise couldn’t be in better hands, and especially with a remake of the original. This is about the best news any adventure game fan could want to read. Telltale, we love you! Thank you!

Savour this day, June 1st 2009. This is the day Lucasarts finally came back home! We’ve missed you. Smile

Jun 1, 2009
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