The Secret of Monkey Island is my favorite game of all time for any platform. It is a bold statement, but it is true. We've seen a lot of news and product in the world of Monkey Island over this past year, and this latest bit of news concerning MI2:SI is exciting.
When SOMI was remade and released last year, the artwork and music were updated. In addition to this, the voice actors from the later games in the series were brought in to dub the original game. What put the word "special" in "Special Edition" was the fact that you could toggle between the old graphics and the new graphics to balance a need for updated art with that of nostalgia. That said, I believe that the original artwork to SOMI and MI2 still looks great.
The second entry in the franchise is getting a remake, and this time it has in-game audio commentary from the creators. Yes. That's right. In. Game. Commentary. Ron Gilbert, Tim Schafer, and Dave Grossman have provided commentary for an update to a classic adventure game, and it will be included in this summer's MI2 release on PC, X-box 360, Playstation 3, Mac, iPhone, and iPod Touch.
Commentary? For an adventure game? What took so long? Why hasn't this been done before?
In a surprise to no one, Apple announced the iPad, their long rumored and hoped for tablet-style device. Despite being saddled with what in my opinion is the worst name for a new product since the Wii, it will surely be lapped up by Apple fans. Unlike the Wii, though, I don't think the name will eventually become catchy or memorable, particularly since a single letter separates it from Apple's own iPod. Basically an upsized iPhone and compatible with all existing apps for that platform, the major revelation thus far about the new device is the companion iBooks store, which I imagine would be a subset of iTunes. While iBooks is an important step for the eReader market and digital books in general - shockingly Apple is supporting the industry's ePub standard - it remains to be seen even with a no doubt beautiful 10inch color screen whether it will have any of the gentle-to-the-eye qualities of eInk displays. (Owners of recent gen eBook readers will know what I'm talking about, i.e., eInk is as paper like as we have at this point, and it's a huge distinction for electronic reading from traditional displays.)
As both an iPhone 3G owner and an enthusiast of and user of graphics tablets (a Gateway Tablet PC is my primary personal laptop these days), I'll be curious if there is any stylus support, as that would make this device much more useful for sketching and note taking than standard finger input. If it's missing that feature AND it has a high price tag, I fail to see the niche such a device could ultimately fill, particularly with netbooks being fully functional mini computers with keyboards and similar 10 hour battery life.
Further news, updates and discussions will take place in the comments to this blog post. Let us know what YOU think!
At long last, here it is. Matt Chat 22: Deja Vu, Uninvited, Shadowgate, and Macventures. I was finally able to get my classic Mac emulator (mini vmac) up and running, so please enjoy--a lot of blood, sweat, and tears went into getting this footage! :)
My friend Clancy over at Kairosnews just posted a link to this spoof about gaming on the Mac. It's a spoof of all those "hip" Apple commercials I haven't ever seen because I never watch television, but it's still pretty funny (if a bit unfair). The theme is, "Photoshop isn't a game." I might add, "Boot Camp is not a game, either."
Well, I finally got my new iMac up and running, and I must admit I'm impressed with what I've seen so far. But, you'll have to excuse me if I don't put those Apple decals on my car just yet.
I've been having some problems making the transition (I'm a Windows "power user" in many ways, and it's tough starting over from scratch with a new OS), but I think I'm starting to get the hang of things. Sure, it's a bit disturbing when even the input devices (the keyboard and the mouse) feel strange and unresponsive, but I'm sure I'll adapt as time wears on. The subtle differences are odd and sometimes frustrating. For instance, I use the "home" and "end" keys a lot on my PC to skip to the end of a line when I type. I have these keys on the Mac keyboard, but they don't seem to do anything. I also have a large widescreen monitor built-in, but the text has a habit of being so small I can't read it. Furthermore, the window re-sizing controls are different...In short, it's like speaking Spanish all your life and suddenly finding yourself surrounded by Portuguese. Yes, the basics are the same, and you can understand and be understood on most things, but all those subtle nuances get mangled in translation. I have the distinct impression that I'm "talking louder" at the Mac rather than correctly, and I need to learn its language.
Author and Screenshots: Mark J.P. Vergeer
Editing: Cecil Casey, Mathew Tschirgi and Bill Loguidice
Online Layout: Cecil Casey and David Torre