Guybrush Is Dead. Long Live Guybrush!

Below, you can find the Guybrush – version five – that actually made Monkey Island 2: Special Edition (you can confirm this for yourself by looking at this screenshot) in addition to an assemblage of comparative shots from the forthcoming remake.

Don’t forget to vote for your favourite Guybrush-ne’er-to-be (“Special Edition” is currently in the lead)!

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MAGS April: Part III

Dear all, this is the final entry to my coverage of April’s MAGS compo. For more information on the competition and the previously discussed entries, you should take a look at the first and second part of the article. This Sunday instalment takes a look at the remaining three contestants: Hard Space, Snakes of Avalon and Space Pool Alpha.

Once more, don’t forget to cast your vote! The compo is still ongoing and lasts until the 17th of May.

Hard Space

Our first entry today, Hard Space: Conquest of the Gayliks, continues on the path already taken by Shane “ProgZmax” Steven’s previous game, Limey Lizard: Waste Wizard!, only to bring the parodic aspects even more to the fore. Stevens is also responsible for the vastly, vastly different Mind’s Eye, one of my all-time favourite AGS games.

I do absolutely have to get this out of the way: Hard Space is a parody of the original Star Trek, built entirely on the solid foundation of cock-jokery. The game, set on the ISC (or is it I.S.S.?) Penetrator, “a ship crewed almost entirely by male homosexuals,” discusses the all-star entourage of Captain Jack Hardin, “the black sheep of the Interstellar Commonwealth.”

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MAGS April: Part II

This is part II of our coverage of the April MAGS competition hosted at the Adventure Game Studio forums. Voting continues until the 17th of May, so you still have some time to check out the entries. The previous part of the article discussed the first four entries to the competition (AGS Footballer Tech Demo, Alphabeta, Dead Hand and Dead Pixels), and the third portion, on Hard Space, Snakes of Avalon and Space Pool Alpha, will be released shortly afterwards, so stay tuned! Today’s part, then, is dedicated to just one game:

Eternally Us

One bad hand and it’s all over. -Fiona

Broken rules aside, context is everything with Ben “Ben304” Chandler and Steven “Calin Leafshade” Poulton’s entry to the compo, Eternally Us. Context-free, the game is, like Steve Ince (So Blonde) calls it, a “beautiful” adventure. For a MAGS entry, then, the game is not only breathtakingly complete but also a fulfilling gaming experience.

The game is also yet another extension to Chandler’s formidable repertoire – a constant stream of short, self-contained adventures – that broadly discusses the same primary motifs, vehicles and themes, in many ways tying his output down into a more coherent whole. Conversely, Poulton is best-known for his well-esteemed (though also controversial) The McCarthy Chronicles.

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MAGS April: Part I

While there are quite a few steadily recurring, deadline–based game creation compos currently in existence, like Ludum Dare, Java4K and PyWeek, one of the longest-running monthly competitions still ongoing is in fact the low-key Monthly Adventure Game Studio contest, or “MAGS” for short. Chris Jones’ engine has spawned a close-knit community that constantly produces periodic communal activities like the adventure series “Reality on the Norm” and a yearly award ceremony.

But why feature MAGS on this particular website, exactly? While we have obviously discussed a plethora of adventures both free and commercial before, doesn’t this begin to dig too deep into hobbyism?

First, whilst the basic idea of the compo may be deviously simple, it comes packaged with a twist every month: Each subsequent contest, as it stands, follows the creative guidelines defined by the previous winner! Such a constantly changing, personalized rule set makes for distinct competitions that always exhibit a different cross-section of genre, style and gameplay. Indeed, many participants seek to broaden their horizons also by battling the perceived limitations and constraints of the adventure-making engine itself.

April’s rule set was defined by Dualnames, who settled on the “One Room One Month” (OROM) format:

I know it may sound silly. But keep it simple, keep it plain. We’ve seen best of AGS games in the OROWs, and I’ve always wondered, if you had to have one room, what could you make more in a month. Keep it two people team MAX! Calin and Ben304 aren’t allowed to team up!

Second, for the very first time in five years, the compo saw no entries at all in March; in fact, this was the first-ever MAGS to not have an entry ever since the activity officially got its start in the June of 2001. April – the month that I have chosen to dissect here – was luckily vastly more successful, and as such raised my interest in addition to its prolific participants. What better moment to discuss the competition than to find it revitalized!

Third, the MAGS website places great emphasis on all voters playing through each and every entry before casting their vote. Therefore, after the jump, I have alphabetically taken a look at all of April’s titles, even if the inherent clashes of style, scope, direction and quality do complicate this task considerably.

Fourth, if Destructoid can report on Ludum Dare (which Nabeel has done on this website in the past), then we can definitely talk about MAGS. Off we go with part one – parts two and three of the article will be posted on the website over the following days.

Each segment has a hyperlink to a download for the entry in question; the general voting page for all entries can be found here. Voting continues until the 17th of May, so you still have some time to familiarize yourself with the entries.

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Versioning Guybrush Threepwood

LucasArts have been curiously posting old concept art revisions on a Facebook page dedicated to the forthcoming Monkey Island 2: Special Edition. Four scrapped versions of your favourite leading man, Guybrush Threepwood, have appeared so far:

My question is, which of these discarded Guybrushes would have been your favourite?

For a completely different type of comparison, you can check out our earlier post that juxtaposes old and new cover artwork from the game.

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