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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Sorry doesn't feed the narwhals, buster!

8/10
Author: TheHande
14 August 2006

Escape from Monkey Island, the fourth game in the Monkey Island tetralogy, is a mixed bag. One thing is for certain, the ending of the game is so ridiculously over the top that I'm pretty sure the game-series has reached some kind of conclusion (though CMI is still the pinnacle).

On elements that were done well, I must agree that the voice cast of the game was simply professional. Even though I miss Alexandra Boyd's lovely British accent, her replacement Charity James does a good job with Elaine, though truth be told I liked her performance as Grace Nakimura in Gabriel Knight 3 better. Stan is also a bit of a heckler, but decent. Musically the game does not quite deliver as all music is either similar to or borrowed from Curse. That is not to say that the soundtrack isn't high-quality, it just doesn't offer as many memorable moments as the past games.

Graphics wise the game is rather uneven. Certain animations are very fluid and lighting in the game is quite brilliant. However, over-all physics are somewhat lacking. On a positive note, the cut-scenes a really well executed. The interface has seen only minor improvements from Grim Fandango, but if you ask me LucasArts made a wise decision in adding action-lines into the game.

A few points of criticism are in order though. Jambalaya island in Act II came as a rather big shock for long time fans and still one of my least favorite sections in the game. Monkey Kombat in Act III, though fun may seem rather tedious to some gamers. Additionally, I was rather disappointed at the blatant fan-service quality of sticking Murray into the game. He is fun to talk to, but ultimately serves no purpose to the over-all plot.

However, one thing is still in the right place, that one thing that Monkey Island is really about, humour. The humour of the game is a shade different from that of previous games, but just as witty and fresh.

Escape from Monkey Island may not be a shiny package, but it is a funny game and definitely a fine ending for a classic series.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Enjoyable

Author: Quackle from London, England
20 February 2003

For the last game in the Monkey Island series to date, it is a very fair game. It is not short of its confusing puzzles (which tend to make me nostalgic), and has a lot of imagination put into it. I don't really like the 3D aspect of the game, I must admit I did prefer the "click 2 go" engine, but still, advantages bring disadvantages.

Good game. 8/10

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Thoroughly Enjoyable.

Author: Boanthrope (matthewcooke@live.co.uk) from Manchester, England
14 March 2002

I'd never played a Monkey Island game before playing this one but after finishing this game I wish I had.

I'm not a PC gamer, I'm a PlayStation guy. I bought this game for the PS2 (My understanding is that this version is virtually identical to the PC version.) The only games of this type that I had played before are the Broken Sword games for PS1 (which were also excellent) so I can only compare this to them.

Escape from Monkey Island (EMI) is a lot more lighthearted than Broken Sword 1 & 2 (BS1&2). Although there is an element of humour in the Broken Sword games this game is full of it. At times, BS1&2 became tedious, especially during the long, serious life stories of slow-talking characters. EMI is never like that. The conversations are not always short but they're always snappy and interesting.

Not having played a MI game before the whole "I wanna be pirate. Aargh!" sort of vibe was new to me. It was thoroughly infectious though. I loved the overall style of the game and the portrayal of the characters (which were superbly acted). This game is lot more madcap than BS1&2. You can carry a bizarre array of things around with you, all kept neatly in your pants, including a chest, a duck and a rubber chicken with a pulley in the middle!

In BS1&2 you could talk to any character about any object you carried and the character would respond with some relevant comment. Although this is realistic, from a gaming point of view it became tedious after a while because every time you picked up a new object or did something new you felt obliged (for completeness, and sometimes necessity) to ask everybody about it and every time you met a new person you felt you had to show him your whole inventory. The vast majority of the time you would just get some dull, useless comment. EMI goes to the opposite extreme where, in general, you cannot show an object to someone unless it is the solution of one of the puzzles in the game, even when it might seem relevant. For example, I pick up a note "to Herman" written by Jo-Jo Junior. Surely it's not unreasonable to show the note to Jo-Jo or Herman and have him comment on it. If I try to "use note with Jo-Jo" all I get is the standard "I don't think he'd like that" response. I think that somewhere between BS1&2 and EMI would be a better level of object/character interaction.

There were many in-references in this game that I missed out on not having play a MI game before. These included odd references and comments in the dialogue and also recurring characters such as Murray, Stan and Herman. Although I felt I missed out on some of the humour by not being able to identify with some of these references the game is completely self-contained and I didn't feel my progress through the game was hampered.

There were a few niggling technical annoyances in this game. You will often enter a doorway or exit point just by walking too near it. Very annoying given the loading times between areas. Especially when you walk into a room and accidently walk straight back out of it again. Also, as the camera angle changes, the new angle is sometimes from the opposite side. If, for example, you walk left to move to new a camera shot, in the next shot you may need to move right to continue in the same actual direction. But you're still holding left, which just moves you back to where you before. But you're still holding left so you move into the new area again. Etc. Etc. Ad nauseum. This is annoying but just a niggle.

Compared to BS1&2 this game seems very short. I wouldn't say it's any easier or harder but it just didn't take me very long to complete. Maybe this is because of the more succinct dialogue in this game. I don't know really.

Overall, I think I'd rather have a Monkey Island game than a Broken Sword game. Both are great games but I think this, along with other Monkey Island games I believe, is just more fun. And that's what it's all about.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Great

Author: brodiebruce (andrew.moncrieff@virgin.net) from The Tri-Island Area
9 February 2002

Honestly, the most fun I've ever had on a PC. Other games I've got-Max Payne, Quake 3, Carmageddon TDR. I don't really have the patience for 'quick-reflex' games, but EMI really entetains me. I play it every Christmas since the day I got it (X-Mas) and it never seases to make you laugh out loud.

The only gripe is the 3d. Remember 1997-CMI? Still looks great, huh?

Three years later and this has aged-I dis-like 3D 'cos it goes obsolete so soon. Why, oh, why, not a CMI engine game.

DO yourself a favour, open a new window, go to lucasarts.com and buy MM2: Day of the tentacle, Sam and Max, Full throttle and the monkey island bounty pack and EMI. You'll then be ready to live, my son.

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Makes me wish I could play part II and III.

8/10
Author: Aaron1375
16 March 2009

Yes, I played the first game and this one. I missed out on part two and three which is a bit sad as I apparently miss LeChuck as a zombie and demon. I also missed the amusement park and I am sure there were quite a few funny moments and puzzles to be had there. This one is rather funny too, and a rather straight forward kind of game. I really only had difficulty in one section and that is only because I was pushing the wrong button like an idiot. Speaking of idiots, Guybrush Threepwood is back and after a brief skirmish out on the high seas he and his wife return home to find out someone has taken over as governor of the island. There is an Australian making fools of the pirates when they do the insult sword duel and he seems to have an evil scheme. The local bar has become a nice little restaurant where you get your meal served to you on a conveyor belt, you get to go to a cool place and try to out cliff dive some dude, and you of course end up once again at Monkey Island! So lots of comedy bits, the game progresses rather smoothly to be sure with very little thinking needing to be done to get by most of the puzzles. A little more challenge could have helped a bit, and maybe some various endings or something but all in all an amusing game.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Not the best of the bunch but still great

9/10
Author: mines1985 (mines1985@aol.com) from In the Mystes O' Tyme
5 August 2002

There are several factors I like in adventure games. I like it when you can't die too easily, and I like it when you can't ruin the game by forgetting something or doing something wrong the first time. LucasArts' "Monkey Island" series has these, and more. They're funny, they're challenging, and, for the most part, they're CLEAN. They are suitable for most ages, though I wouldn't advise letting kids who are too young play them, and you can get a good laugh without too many inappropriate or suggestive comments. I was really looking forward to playing the fourth installment of the "Monkey Island" series. I'd played all three before and thought they were all great. They were easily the most fun and interesting games I'd ever played, especially since I was used to the whole "Sierra" theme and didn't really know what to expect. There are a lot of great things about these games, namely, you can't die all too easily (although there may be some spots you might be able to) and you can't ruin the whole entire game by forgetting one thing or not following explicit directions. There's always a second chance in Monkey Island (and in most LucasArts games!) Unfortunately, I really didn't like EMI as much as I did the others. The main difference was the absence of the "point-and-click" interface. I didn't mind it too much for using inventory, but simple commands became a bit difficult since you couldn't directly click on something - you might have to turn several times to get it right - and the walking style took a lot of getting used to! Also absent was the choice of "light" and "mega" that was present in other games, because playing on lite first for a little while might have been helpful for "getting used" to the game before really going for it. Don't get me wrong - EMI is a great game and should be enjoyed by everyone. I was disappointed to hear that the creators of the game didn't include little Wally because they didn't like his character, because I (and many others, I'm sure) thought he added a nice touch to the whole game, along with helping move the plot along. (Play the second and third one to see who he is!) And it was too bad that Murray, the talking skull, was only present for a little while and didn't have as big a part as in the third one. Either way, the game was really great, and I would certainly advise it to anyone looking for a fresh new type of adventure game.

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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Look! A three headed monkey!

Author: Michael Wilcox (nmk2002uk@yahoo.co.uk) from Harlow, Essex, England
25 March 2004

In days of yore, there was a pirate. Not a very good one. His name struck fear into the hearts of many a terrified schoolchild! Yes, This marks the return of everyones favourite pirate with a silly name: Guybrush Thropweed..erm...Threepwood. I found The Secret Of Monkey Island and Monkey Island II very good. It had laughs, the puzzles and good graphics. But....11 disks for the Commodore Amiga version of number Two! Appart from that, they were enjoyable because they were cleverly thought out. The graphics at the time where excellent. This one is a worthy addition to the series. It marks a departure for the point and click system: say hello to a 3d control system that makes the game a tad hard. Especially on a PS2! But it's a small niggle to a good game. Oh, if anyone finds out how to get through the gate in the swamp and fight Pegnose Pete, it would mean alot to me!! I'm that rubbish at it!

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

That's the second best Monkey Island game I've ever seen!

Author: Dylan Chan from Sydney, Australia
7 December 2000

Ahhh the Monkey Island series, easily definable from other adventure series in the genre by it's witty sardonic humour, flavourful Caribbean back drop and... well... the monkeys.

Escape follows the same tried and true Monkey Island design that we've all come to know and love, albeit utilising 3d graphics and a new inventory and command system.

Gone are the days of point and click mouskateering, command and inventory panels. Escape uses the Grim Fandango GRIME graphics engine which is an improvement over the high res SVGA "pencil drawing" graphics of Curse, and continues the trend of past Monkey Island teams to utilise the latest technological advances in each new instalment of the series.

So how does it compare to past Monkey Island titles? Well, the humour is still there, Dominic Armato returns to lend his voice talents to the main role of Guybrush, and he lends the perfect bumbling and slightly naive touch to the well written script. Similarly, the scores of other characters are well represented and Lucasarts should be commended on the high level of authentic acting talent recruited.

The game play is typical wacky fair. The difficulty level is kept down due to the somewhat linear fashion that the game unfolds in. None the less, one is presented with suitably complex challenges and plenty of in-depth exploring will be required in order to complete the game. Lucasarts have also expanded upon the action sub-games within Escape. In MI 1 we were introduced to insult sword fighting and Curse continued this and added a kind of pirate ship shoot em up for good measure. Escape goes further and you'll find yourself engaging in monkey martial arts and cliff top diving.

The graphics are well rendered and I'm pleased to report that the blockiness and jagged edges some of us associate with low res 3d animations are not present in Escape from Monkey Island. The characters are cartoony cute, but not so ridiculous that you would mistake Escape for a Nintendo 64 game.

All in all Escape is a well made game, perhaps a bit short, but never the less a lot of fun, it will be interesting to see where they go after this, it's hard to imagine that the designers of the next sequel will be able to change much when it comes to the graphics or inventory systems, but if history is anything to go by, major changes are install. I for one can't wait!

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0 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

The best of the four...

10/10
Author: Blizzar from Gothenburg, Sweden
17 May 2001

Normally, sequels are worse than their predecessors. This is generally more true for movies than computer games, but mostly holds true for computer-games too. Escape from Monkey Island is an exception to this. It is in my opinion the best of the four games, and then I think the three predecessors to this one were great too.

You will like this game the most if you have played the previous three, since there are a lot of flashbacks, and characters from the old games in this one, so you will miss out on a lot of the jokes and story if you haven't played them.

But if you did play the three other Monkey Island games, and loved them as I did, you MUST play this one. It is truly great, and everything is perfect. It's true they moved to 3D this time, but it wasn't at all disturbing as I thought it would be. The graphics is great, the story is even better, and the humor is fantastic! It's a must-play!

The monkeys are listening...

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0 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Best PC game ever made

10/10
Author: Olga Iakimenko from Moscow, Russia
14 April 2001

I've played a lot of game, especially the quest types (Myst, Riven etc.) and i have to say that this one is the best. When the Curse of Monkey Island came out, i found it really good, but this one's even better. I loved the graphics, the unique (in is way) lucasarts humour, and the plot + storyline. I liked the voice of Dominic Armato as Guybrush, and all of the other characters as well. There is only one thing missing: there's no soundtrack, and the music is great. If you haven't got this game, get it now, you won't regret it.

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