Polygon was able to prod Tim a bit about the recently announced Day of the Tentacle remake, which is still in its earliest phases but which he promises will remain 2D. Beyond assurances of faithfulness, we'll just have to wait to learn what this upgrade will really look or sound like (while wondering what the LEC Singapore sweat shop kids came up with first).

When asked about the business side of securing the license in the first place, Tim describes a situation that really makes me hopeful for the future.

"There were just some people at Disney, Sony and Lucasfilm that care about these games," he said. "They're old enough that some of these people who are executives played them when they were kids. I've been really impressed with the fact that these kind of deals have come together because there's so many reasons for this deal not to happen. There's so many parties involved and so many people who could've said no, that it really took a passionate drive by people in the right places to escort it through the process."

Perhaps Tim's dream of revisiting all the old adventures is a bit too good to be true, but still, it's hard to imagine the future of these games ever being more bright, or for a better group of custodians to be assigned their preservation than Schafer's studio. Hopefully those fans strategically positioned at Disney stick around long enough for Double Fine to keep going through the catalog.

Comments: 2 Comment icon Twitter this

Grossman turns Reactive

18 Nov, 2014, 11:21 | Posted by: MrManager | Source: IGN | Comments: 1

You know him from LucasArts, you know him from Telltale, and you might even know him from Humongous Entertainment. And now you'll also know Dave Grossman from Reactive Studios, where he's the chief creative officer.

"Who the hell does this Reactive think it is?", you may ask, and a good question it is. The studio is known for its Codename Cygnus, a Kickstarted "interactive radio drama." Apparently it uses "speech recognition," which means it's perfectly suited for playing on the bus.

(Yeah, I don't know, I never tried it; it could be awesome for all I know.)

Anyway! Good luck to Mr Grossman on his new gig. We're looking forward to see where this is headed.

You can find Reactive Studios website here.

Comments: 1 Comment icon Twitter this

Monkey Island 4 Remastered

11 Nov, 2014, 22:05 | Posted by: Jason | Source: The Forums | Comments: 3

(Again, this will be a retread for the Twitter crowd, but allow us to return from downtime with an artificial splash. We need this.)

When the remaster of Grim Fandango was announced, the first thought that rushed to everyone's head was, "That's great, but what about sprucing up the most beloved installment of the Monkey Island series while you're at it?"

That's where our own bgbennyboy comes in. With some gentle nudging from yours truly, Benny has put out a new release of his excellent Escape from Monkey Island launcher. Here is the full list of features, the killer one being that the cutscenes now play at twice their original resolution, which I believe was accomplished by violating the PS2 version of the game, which always had the better quality cutscenes.

But Benny needs your help testing his noble work. So grab your EMI discs and enjoy the fruits of his labors, which were literally four years in the making. (No, seriously - go to the beginning of that thread.)

Comments: 3 Comment icon Twitter this

I'm just saying. While it's little more than a splash screen for the special edition, there's something fundamentally disturbing about the fact that Disney is even acknowledging the game on its own web site.

I mistrust it, somehow.

Comments: 8 Comment icon Twitter this

Disney has GOG on very tight leash

29 Oct, 2014, 20:29 | Posted by: Jason | Comments: 2

It would be fair to say that TIE Fighter is the most widely beloved of the six excellent LucasArts games that GOG released yesterday, but many of those fans were disappointed when they discovered that the version being sold was not the version they were expecting.

Widely considered to be the definitive edition due to its enhanced graphics, cutscene voiceovers and extra expansions, the version released as the Collector's CD-ROM is the one most people remember, yet it's not being offered by GOG. Some assumed it was an oversight, but here was GOG's response:

"Hello, I am afraid that we were able to release only those versions with the bonus content that are currently available. We might get the rights to release more in the future, but I am unable to predict or promise anything.

That Disney is being so rigid in the way it licenses these games is disappointing - TIE Fighter is not the only LEC title with multiple versions. I found out that GOG is even restricted when it comes to documentation-related extras. When I inquired about why Fate of Atlantis and Sam & Max come with their hint books but not Monkey Island, I received an identical response.

Comments: 2 Comment icon Twitter this
The goal that the team at GOG.com has been working towards since it opened its doors back in 2008 has been accomplished. LucasArts games are now on GOG.com. X-Wing, Tie Fighter, Knights of the Old Republic, and The Secret of Monkey Island Special Edition are only available for Windows, while Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis and Sam & Max Hit the Road are available for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

That's right, the SCUMM games are actually using ScummVM! The lawyers who used to work for Lucas legal probably nearly had a heart attack when they read this news.

Comments: 9 Comment icon Twitter this
Update 2: The news is now official, so the link has been changed to the correct, working one.

Update: The link to the confirmation is now broken because it was a leak of information GOG intends to make public tomorrow. Check back then for the real deal.

Original Post: As Jennifer broke, the rumors were true! GOG has cut a deal with Disney to release LEC games on its service. And now we have titles. GOG confirmed that "about" 30 games will be made available in total, starting tomorrow with the following six:

Star Wars™: X-Wing Special Edition - digital distribution debut, on GOG.com!
Star Wars™: TIE Fighter Special Edition - digital distribution debut, on GOG.com!
Sam & Max Hit the Road - digital distribution debut, on GOG.com!
The Secret of Monkey Island™: Special Edition
Indiana Jones® and the Fate of Atlantis™
Star Wars®: Knights of the Old Republic

You'll note that only three of those are digital debuts, but hey, Sam & Max Hit the Road and TIE Fighter are finally available again! Let's hope all fourteen classic adventures make the cut. Seriously, these are exciting times. Speculate below!
Comments: 5 Comment icon Twitter this
Update: The teaser fonts are confirmed to be real, as they are now live on the GOG.com website.

We've gotten our hopes up before that LucasArts games would be released on GOG.com when the site previously teased that they were going to add a large publisher to their catalog (not to mention the Night Dive rumors). Well, the rumors are here again, as GOG.com is teasing that another publisher will be adding their games to the catalog, with a countdown timer on their main page.

There might be some weight to the rumor that the publisher is LucasArts this time, as a GOG.com user has reportedly found three countdown images on the GOG.com website that use well known LucasArts fonts. Of course, if it does end up being LucasArts, it's uncertain if any games that aren't already released digitally will be released on GOG.com, as the three franchises represented (Indiana Jones, Star Wars, and Monkey Island) already have games available digitally on Steam. But, at least this time signs do seem to point towards DRM-free versions of LucasArts games finally being available soon.

Comments: 8 Comment icon Twitter this
Gamasutra released an article detailing the effort to rebuild and preserve the world's first commercial graphical massively multiplayer online game, Lucasfilm's Habitat.

The original Habitat, which had an interface and graphics similar to the adventure game Labyrinth, was released in beta form by Lucasfilm Games (now LucasArts) for the Quantum Link online service for Commodore 64 from 1986 until it was shut down in 1988. A sized down version was released as Club Caribe on Quantum link in January 1988. Fujitsu later licensed the code and released Fujitsu Habitat in Japan in 1990. Habitat and Club Caribe was highly influential, and it's code still lives on through WorldsAway, which premiered on CompuServe in 1995, and moved to the public internet in 1997. WorldsAway had multiple worlds, two of which survive today and are now known as Dreamscape and NewHorizone. Dreamscape was Fujitsu's first virtual world, and appeared when WorldsAway premiered in 1995. NewHorizone was originally Club Connect when it was launched by Fujitsu in 1998 and New Radio World when the WorldsAway worlds were sold and became part of an online world known as VZones in December 1998. New Radio World was renamed VZConnections in December 1999, and then newHorizone in September 2001. These two worlds are still a part of vZones, and the WorldsAway software has also recently been licensed for use in MetroWorlds.

The preservation project was spearheaded by Alex Handy, founder and director of the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment. The project has official permission from Fujitsu, the company that purchased Habitat from Lucasfilm, to get the Habitat software working again. In order to get the project off the ground, Handy enlisted the help of the creators of Habitat, Chip Morningstar and Randy Farmer, and Stratus, the company who made the Nimbus servers that Habitat ran on. They were given a Stratus computer, manufactured in 1989, and upgraded to use a 1999 era TCP/IP protocol.

On September 25, 2014, Morningstar and Farmer, and over a dozen hackathon attendees at the MADE video game museum, as well as people working remotely through IRC, set out to get Habitat running again. The hardest part was the Quantum Link code, so they utilized the Quantum Link Reloaded open source project.

There is still a ways to go, as they don't have access to all the support libraries that are needed for the Quantum Link server, so those need to be emulated in order to work properly. But, they have come a long way, and still intend to finish. Once the project is complete, anyone will be able to log in using a C64 emulator.

You can read more about the effort, and donate to the cause if you so desire, over at the Habitat Preservation Project page at the MADE website.
Be the first to comment! Comment icon Twitter this
Double Fine's remastered version of Tim Schafer's magnum opus of his LucasArts years, Grim Fandango, was demoed at Indiecade. Game journalists have played that demo and shared their thoughts.

IGN describes the new version as follows:

You have the ability to toggle back and forth between how the game originally looked, and how it looks now, and holy moly the difference is night and day. Thanks to the new lighting, shaders, and other technical enhancements that flew way over my head, Manny and company now look incredible. Their in-game models appear to be nearly identical to their cut-scene counterparts, which is great. The game is still presented in 4:3, but you have the ability to stretch it to widescreen (for the love of everything good, please don’t do this). The borders are black right now, but I was told that the developers are toying with some ideas for what could stand on the two sides of the screen.

In addition, Double Fine has also added some bonus features to the game:

The final big change I stumbled across was the awesome inclusion of nodes scattered throughout the world that contain small snippets of commentary from Tim Schafer, Peter Chan, Peter McConnell, and a ton of other folks who helped make the game so special back in 1998.

Polygon has also shared their thoughts on the demo, and have confirmed that the original's tank controls will be an option for the purists who prefer to play the game that way.

It looks like Grim Fandango Remastered is shaping up to be great. The rest of us will get a chance to play it for ourselves once it's released in early 2015.
Comments: 11 Comment icon Twitter this
It be that day again! Talk like a pirate and hoist your sails to go over to Steam to pick up a load of pirate booty at sale prices, including the two special editions and Tales of Monkey Island at 75% off each! Arr!
Be the first to comment! Comment icon Twitter this

Grim Fandango PAX Panel

17 Aug, 2014, 16:30 | Posted by: Jennifer | Comments: 5
Double Fine is going to be holding a panel at this year's Penny Arcade Expo, entitled Grim Fandango: Bringing the Dead Back to Life! The panel will be jam packed full of people who worked on the game, including creator Tim Schafer, artist Peter Chan, musician Peter McConnell, Double Fine Productions executive producer Matt Hansen and Sony’s Gio Corsi as moderator.

They will discuss development of both the original game and the new remastered version. They will also be unveiling a new development documentary episode from 2 Player Productions. If you are going to PAX this year, you won't want to miss the panel. It is happening on Saturday, August 30th at 4:30 in the Main Theater.

Comments: 5 Comment icon Twitter this

The SCUMM Bar In Lego Form

14 Aug, 2014, 18:36 | Posted by: Jennifer | Comments: 4
Since we're always on top of things (this forum post from last month and this comment from Rum Rogers telling us about the project totally don't count), Mojo is here to let you know about a fan project to re-create the SCUMM Bar in Lego form. If 10,000 people vote on the project, it could become an official Lego project, assuming Disney gives the OK to use their IP. I guess it's worth a shot to give it your vote, as Disney does seem to be at least aware now that they own the LucasArts adventure game catalog, and not just Star Wars.
Comments: 4 Comment icon Twitter this

Gamasutra interviews Khris Brown

23 Jul, 2014, 22:08 | Posted by: Jason | Source: Gamasutra | Be the first to comment!

From recording tests with Noah Falstein as Bobbin Threadbare in 1992 to her present work voice directing Broken Age, Khris Brown has played a crucial role in making your favorite Mojo classics talk.

In a new interview with Gamastura, Brown discusses her career, sharing insights she gained from her decades in the field:

In short: know your stuff, be supportive, have no ego, and be ready to laugh. Do not give up after 3 takes. Do give up after 10 takes. We had 27 takes of Indiana Jones saying, "It's a cup full of lava." The actor was exhausted, and we ended up Frankensteining the line anyway (pasting two takes together to create our ideal).

I'm not sure I agree - everyone knows that Doug Lee's best work comes after twenty-five takes, like Jack Nicholson in The Shining. Anyway, read the full interview.
Be the first to comment! Comment icon Twitter this
The latest release of ScummVM, the interpreter that lets you play classic adventure games on modern (and not so modern) systems, is now available. This release adds support for 5 new games: The Neverhood, Mortville Manor, Voyeur, Return to Ringworld, and Chivalry is Not Dead.

In addition, the MT-32 emulator has been updated, an OpenGL backend has been added, many aspects of the GUI have been improved, the AGOS engine has been enhanced, Urban Runner's videos are now less CPU-demanding, tons of bugs have been fixed in dozens of SCI games, the Adlib sound in Loom and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade has been made to sound more like the original, and platform portability for the Tony and Tinsel engines has been improved. The Steam versions of the four LucasArts adventures that were released on that platform are now supported as well.

You can pick up the latest version for your platform of choice at the ScummVM homepage.
Comments: 1 Comment icon Twitter this
The Double Fine Action News page has been updated with news that the remastered version of Grim Fandango will will be releasing simultaneously on Windows, Mac, Linux, PlayStation 4, and Vita.
Comments: 5 Comment icon Twitter this

Not sure what you did to deserve this, but the internet has published another one of those excellent interviews with the Lucasfilm Games elders for the likes of us to enjoy. It was conducted by Jaz Rignallm, who'd visited the studio in 1985 on behalf of ZZAP! 64 when games like Koronis Rift and The Eidolon were the hot titles in the pipeline.

The article mostly reads like a transcripted discussion between Rignallm and the following: Steve Arnold, David Fox, Ron Gilbert, Peter Langston and Chip Morningstar. There is rare art and fascinating anecdotes aplenty, including a proposed sequel you surely weren't aware of:

David continues, "About four or five years ago, I got the team together and pitched LucasArts to do a sequel [to The Eidolon]. Loren Carpenter whipped up a demo on the iPhone. You could fly around the landscape. I think we were really close to having a deal in place, and then the president of LucasArts, Darrel Rodriguez, was replaced."

Ron interjects, "He was the one that did all the Monkey Island remakes and stuff. He was a lot more interesting."

"Yeah, he loved the old stuff," agrees David. "He wanted to go back and pull that stuff out and engage the fans in a way that I thought was great. And then the company decided they wanted to do Star Wars again, to focus in that area, and all this stuff got pushed aside. I'd love to see it, but now I think it's even less likely – unless it was a different title."

Bob Mackey, a huge fan of the early LucasArts games, asks, "Right now I guess Disney owns everything you guys have don at Lucasfilm Games. And there hasn't been any word about making these games available via services that distribute old games. How do you feel about that? Knowing that there are these amazing games you worked on that are all just unavailable unless you pirate them?"

David thinks for a moment. "Well, it seems like they're missing an opportunity. If they had a legal way for people to purchase them, I think people would do that, rather than trying to cobble them together with pirate downloads and emulators. But it's not Star Wars. I think they bought Lucasfilm for Star Wars, not old games."

This discussion took place around GDC 2014, before this Grim Fandango remastering business came to light, so here's hoping the missed opportunities stand a chance at being, you know, un-missed in the future.
Comments: 1 Comment icon Twitter this
Remember that Star Wars Fight Simulator "Attack Squadrons" game Disney was working on? Well, they've gone all LucasArts on it and cancelled development after opening it up to a closed beta
Here's the inside word from CNET.

"After much consideration, we have decided to cease development so that we can focus on other Star Wars game experiences. We truly appreciate the time you spent engaging in the beta."


Damn those current market place realities and underlying economic considerations...
Comments: 2 Comment icon Twitter this
ScummVM, the program that allows you to run many adventure games from many different developers, such as LucasArts, Sierra, Revolution, Coktel Vision, and more, on modern operating systems, phones, tablets, and consoles, is gearing up for their latest release. That means that they have made quite a few improvements, and added new games, and they need your help to test them to make sure they play as they should.

The new games that will be added in 1.7.0 are Chivalry Is Not Dead, Mortville Manor, Return to Ringworld, The Neverhood, and Voyeur. They have also changed their Adlib player for the DOS floppy versions of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and Loom, so they need your help testing these games as well.

If you own any of these games and would like to help out, then fire up ScummVM on your platform of choice and test. Let them know how you made out on the ScummVM forums and if you find any bugs, submit them on the ScummVM bug tracker. The results of testing will be posted on the ScummVM wiki.

In related news, keep an eye on the ScummVM Planet. The Google Summer of Code is going on now, ScummVM is a part of it again, and this year their sister project ResidualVM is involved too (with ScummVM acting as an umbrella for both projects). GSoC students are adding support for Sfinx and The Prince and the Coward to ScummVM, as well as improving support for Escape from Monkey Island and improving the TinyGL renderer in ResidualVM. They've already accomplished a lot on these tasks, so it will be really interesting to see what they manage to get done by the end of the summer.

Comments: 1 Comment icon Twitter this

Well, hell, Double Fine is remastering Grim Fandango -- what can you do to sustain this high?!

First, you can stop whining about it not being released for PC up front. You know it'll be available for non-Sony platforms soon enough.

Then! Then you can bask in nostalgia heaven!

For example, you can check out our various screenshots. Concept art, in-jokes, covers… It's all there. And you probably want to re-watch the trailer and enjoy a G4 special on the game too, right in our video section.

This is probably a good time to re-read Jason in-depth Secret History article too. (LEC might not have acknowledged Grim's existence, but, bizarrely enough, Disney has.)

Word has it that Thrik is resurrecting his Grim Fandango site. You should nag him to get that going.

And the soundtrack! Go listen to the soundtrack!

2 Player Productions has a retrospective too. What the hell?

Feel free to link to more Grim in the comments, or on Twitter. Tweet it to us and we shall retweet.

Comments: 4 Comment icon Twitter this
Newer  |  Older

By Month

2000 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2001 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2002 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2003 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2004 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2005 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2006 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2007 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2008 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2009 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2010 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2011 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2012 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2013 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2014 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12
2015 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12

By Categories

Adventure Before or After April, '10
Autumn Moon Before or After April, '10
Behind Mojo Before or After April, '10
Community Before or After April, '10
Console Before or After April, '10
Crackpot Before or After April, '10
Developer Before or After April, '10
Double Fine Before or After April, '10
Film and TV Before or After April, '10
House of Mojo Before or After April, '10
Irresponsible Games Before or After April, '10
LFNetwork Before or After April, '10
LucasArts Before or After April, '10
Mac Before or After April, '10
Miscellaneous Before or After April, '10
MunkyFun Before or After April, '10
Ron Gilbert Before or After April, '10
Star Wars Before or After April, '10
Telltale Games Before or After April, '10

Search

Loading