The Curse of Monkey Island (1997)
It was 6 long years until the release of the next in the Guybrush saga also known as The Monkey Island games. It was only available on Windows and was only available on CD. It was also the last game to use the SCUMM engine, which was replaced by the GrimE engine. It was also the first Monkey Island game to have voice acting.
Story and Characters
Same basic characters, with a French Buccaneer thrown in for good measure. The game doesn’t quite start off where Monkey Island 2 ended. Our hero is found floating aimlessly in a bumper car with no idea what happened or how he ended up there. In the meantime LeChuck has laid siege upon Plunder Island, which is now governed by Elaine. During a sequence between LeChuck and Elaine Guybrush appears and is taken prisoner once more by LeChuck. During his escape, Guybrush finds a diamond ring on LeChuck’s ship as he escapes and takes it with.
Shortly after the escape, Guybrush proposes to Elaine with the ring, which turns out to be cursed and turns Elaine into a gold statue. Of course the statue that Elaine turns into is stolen and Guybrush needs to get her back….er….it back.
Guybrush talks to the Voodoo Lady from the last game that informs him he must retrieve another ring, this one uncursed, from Blood Island if he wants to restore the love of his life to normal again. Along the way things don’t go smoothly, first no one knows where Blood Island is anymore, so you need to find a map……which is tattooed to the back of an uncooperative pirate. Then once more you need to find a ship and crew…..again.
Eventually, after finding and doing everything you need, you’re off and sailing to Blood Island, when confronted by a Captain Rottingham, who boards the ship and bests Guybrush in one on one combat…..well…..its a game of insult swordfighting. Rottingham then takes the map to Blood Island. Guybrush eventually learns more and better insults from other pirates (similiar to in the first game) and defeats Rottingham regaining the map. Which doesn’t matter because a storm grabs Guybrush’s ship and wrecks it on….Blood Island. During the crash the statue of Elaine is propelled deep into the island. On Blood Island, Guybrush eventually finds the statue, gets a uncursed ring and turns Elaine back to normal…..then they are taken prisoner by LeChuck’s skeleton army…..
How’s it end? Well I think I gave you enough spoilers, granted I left a whole lot out, but that’s because I want you to play the game!
Pretty similiar to the first two, a few tweaks here and there but for the most part it plays the same, the one main difference is that it doesn’t show the command list at the bottom of the screen.
Graphics and Sound
Curse was the last hurrah…or hizzah…in this case for the faithful SCUMM engine. The Interface was tweaked also, changing the familiar look that had the commands at the bottom, this provided more space for the game itself. Also the graphics were much improved, a bit cartoonier, but much improved. The music is still scored by Michael Land and still uses the iMUSE engine. Also, Curse was the first Monkey Island game to have voice acting.
Another great game in the series and another worth playing. I haven’t been able to find it on gog or steam, but I’m guessing its still out there somewhere and would be worth a play. Plus come on, don’t you want to know how it ends?