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Look, it's a slow news day: Chris Remo and Jake Rodkin and, hell, Psychonauts co-writer Erik Wolpaw are currently part of a group Ask Me Anything on Reddit. They're talking about Half-Life: Alyx, which adds another notch on Jake Rodkin and Sean Vanaman's popular video game franchise belts. Monkey Island 5? Those two. Half-Life: Not Quite 3 But Maybe? Those two. I can only assume they'll be resurrecting Silent Hill or Grim Fandango next. Which you can ask them about here on our obligatory second link. I'd be stoked as hell for it if I had a halfway chance of using VR soon.

Indiana Jones news is so scanty that rumor is often all we have to go on. Well, today’s rumor, courtesy of the rumor-mongers at We Got This Covered, is that Disney is developing a television series starring the daughter of one Professor Henry Jones, Jr. The idea is that the character would be introduced in Indiana Jones 5, because back-channeling a reboot via Harrison Ford’s final film isn’t cynical at all.

Still, giving Indiana Jones a daughter (which the Young Indiana Jones wraparounds in fact do) has always been an idea with potential. Apparently it was considered for the fourth film, but Spielberg rejected it. (Not sure why Indy needed offspring at all, but whatever.) The idea of Indy passing the baton to a successor character in the fifth film has been speculated on quite a bit, and a daughter role would be as good as any for such a transition. I don’t know how old a daughter of Indy could be if she’s meant to be the legitimate child of the newly married Jones’s, but it’s hardly implausible that Indy would have fathered a few other bastards besides Mutt over the years.

What leaves me scratching my head, however, is why you’d want Indy’s successor trapped in the 1960s-70s. Unlike, say, Bond, which is flexible enough a sandbox to update with the times, Indiana Jones has always been tied to a particular era – the golden age of pulp – and it seems to me that departing from it was really only to accommodate Harrison Ford’s age. If there had been some way to freeze the actor at his Raiders age, we’d still be getting adventures set in the 30s and 40s. So, it’s hard for me to imagine what the future this rumor suggests would even look like. Once you’ve retired Ford and have some other adventurer running around during the Nixon presidency, are we really even resembling the original IP enough to bother connecting to it?

The main reason this rumor excites me is that it means by implication that there’s life left in Indiana Jones 5. Things have remained alarmingly silent on a project that pretty much has to be in front of the cameras in a matter of months if it is to make its release date. Either I’m unequal to the challenge of second grade arithmetic, or an announcement has to be arriving imminently. Rest assured that when the news breaks, Mojo will be the sixth to let you know.

If you would have told me fifteen years ago that the primarily thing keeping Mixnmojo alive was Willow news, I would have said, “That sounds about right.”

A month after it was reported that screenwriter’s son extraordinaire Jonathan Kasdan had turned in a pilot script for a potential Willow series, the writer (and, I presume, showrunner?) has tweeted a photo of a Willow Ufgood baseball cap pinned to a bullet board with the caption “The office is open.” The implication is heavy that a writers room is being convened, which puts this potential Disney+ series yet another step closer to reality. Hopefully Bob Dolman gets invited to the party.

Oh, and happy belated new year from The International House of Mojo!

To spite Temple-shading elitists like Remi and Thunderpeel, I decided to follow in the footsteps of Shiva by consecrating the 35th anniversary of the second – and, according to the sexual endowed, best – Indiana Jones installment with a three-page valentine as feverishly out-of-control as its endlessly rewatchable recipient.

Read my truth, then respond with yours in the comments.

Jason may threaten you readers with Star Wars content on Mojo, but only I have the balls to actually follow through with it. But I will concede we're talking the golden age of games from the Galaxy Far Far Away - the much loved and even more missed space combat simulators from Larry Holland, of course.

PC Gamer has a wonderfully in-depth interview with Larry, and his wife Robin (and other peripheral characters like Barbara Gleason) who discuss all sorts of interesting facts and stories about those early days at LucasFilm Games and LucasArts, then the formation of their own Totally Games.

(Larry) describes his first time playing the game as though a TIE Fighter were an artifact you might find out in the world, restore, and take flight in.
"This thing, this tin can," he says, "had a whole different feeling. So many of the other games had all these fighters, whether it was X-wings or P-47s, which could handle a lot of abuse. Here, it really felt like we captured the fear factor of being in something that could blow up with only a few shots. I liked that take on things—that emotion that was surrounding you at all times."


Mention is made of early Lucasfilm Games titles like HMS Pegasus, Strike Fleet, Battlehawks 1942, and the Secret Weapons of the Luftwaffe series. There are early TIE-Fighter sketches and embedded videos, George Lucas anecdotes, and all sorts of greatness.

Comments: 2 / Source: PC Gamer
Hot on the heels of the new company with the old Telltale name announcing a new Wolf Among Us game, they have also announced (and released) a compiled and updated set of their old Batman titles, but with a noir remastered twist.

Step into the shadows and experience the twisted world of Telltale’s Batman in a way that brings the fractured persona of the Dark Knight and the City of Gotham to life in a sinister, new way. Enhanced with hand recolored game play and remastered textures, the Telltale Batman Shadows Edition brings all ten Telltale Batman episodes across two seasons into one, complete game while staying true to the spirit of the Dark Knight’s rich, visually compelling history.

Includes:
• Batman: The Telltale Series (Episodes 1-5)
• Batman: The Enemy Within (Episodes 1-5)
• Batman Shadows Mode


Shadows mode is a black-and-white-and-colour-splash re-texturing of the games, so far as I can tell. And it can be purchased as a DLC add-on if you already have the game(s).



As well as the current release on Steam, it's also out now for Xbox One, and coming soon for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and PC owners who prefer to buy from the Epic Games Store.
Comments: 1 / Source: Steam

Six months back it was reported that screenwriter Jonathan Kasdan and narrator Ron Howard got together to scheme about giving Willow a sequel in the form of a series on Disney+.  Now, Bleeding Cool reports that Kasdan has completed a pilot script for the potential project.  While that is far from a green light, it is material progress.  The existence of a script is more than you can say about, for example, Indiana Jones 5, which some have called the In the Valley of Gods of franchise film sequels.

Anywho, we at Mojo are pulling for this Willow show to become a thing, because when you consider what we have left to report on in 2020 aside from Psychonauts 2, things start to feel a little dour.  What are we supposed to do, start covering Star Wars?  I'll see the site become a Leisure Suit Larry hub first.

Although the fate of The Walking Dead: The Final Season was what seemed to worry the gaming press most when Telltale threw in the towel at the end of last year, it was the incubating follow-up to the critically acclaimed The Wolf Among Us that was perhaps the more lamentable (non-human) loss when the building came down.

Happily for fans of either series, both of those losses were ultimately recovered.  The Walking Dead got its finale earlier this year, and today yesterday Forbes reports that the-holding-company-now-going-by-Telltale is collaborating with AdHoc Studio (the current home of several ex-Telltale developers) to revive the other orphaned project.  Here, have an announcement trailer:

Now to revive that The Devil's Playhouse soundtrack album...

Comments: 4 / Source: Forbes

You might have seen this posted in the comments by the suspiciously named “custard,” but in case you haven’t, this Twitter thread by contracted In the Valley of Gods writer Duncan Fyfe is worth a read.

We do, of course, sympathize with Duncan -- we got woefully little left to write around these parts, although Jason is pushing hard for more Larry content. But hey, there’s always an opening for you at Mojo, Duncan. We pay in love and hugs.

When Valve swallowed up Campo Santo, Zaarin predicted Jake would jump on a Steam overhaul project. Turns out that was closer to correct than what we had expected.

In a statement accidentally sent to Polygon instead of us, Jake said:

To fans looking forward to In the Valley of Gods, it’s probably clear that the optimistic “2019” at the end of the announcement trailer isn’t going to be accurate. In the end, Valve Time makes fools of us all. But yes, developers from the former Campo Santo team have joined other projects at Valve, including Half-Life: Alyx. As you can imagine, our experience in the first-person adventure genre is pretty relevant. You hear a lot about how at Valve you can work on what you want. It turns out that’s true, and there’s a lot of work available. As we integrated ourselves into Valve it became clear there was a lot of valuable work to be done on Half-Life: Alyx. Some of us starting lending a hand, and have since become full-time on the project as it approaches launch. Similarly, some ex-Campos are working on Dota Underlords, some are on Steam, and so on. So to answer your question as of today, In the Valley of Gods development is on hold—but it certainly feels like a project people can and may return to. And when that happens, we’ll find an exciting way to let fans know.

And that's all we got.

Comments: 8 / Source: Not Jake

So here is a Mojo rarity: a sunshine story filled with sweetness. Don’t get used to it.

If you for whatever reason have played Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order you may have noticed a reference in the game to a "Jedi Master Mar Ti 'Buck' Kam'Ron," which, of course, almost spells out Martin "Bucky" Cameron. Many will remember that name, having seen it in the credits for games like The Secret of Monkey Island and X-Wing vs. Tie Fighter. Turns out that Bucky’s son worked on Fallen Order and added the tribute to his father who sadly passed away last year.

Check out GameSpot for more.

In the last few days a reporter at PC Gamer has noticed several strange goings-on at Campo Santo, the game developer started in part by ex-Telltale and ex-Mojo Jake Rodkin. They report some disappearances of mentions of the game-in-progress Valley of the Gods:

...recent changes in the Twitter bios of three of its lead developers—Firewatch producer and 3D environment artist Jane Ng, art director Claire Hummel, and Campo Santo co-founder Jake Rodkin—has some followers worried that the game has been canceled.

A check of the Internet Archive confirms that the changes were made relatively recently. The Twitter bios of Ng and Hummel both indicated that they were working on In the Valley of Gods as recently as October 2019, while Rodkin's bio made the same reference up to September. All three now indicate simply that they are employed by Valve.

But they also point out that the game website is still up, as its Steam holding page. Jake could clear this up, but what are the odds of that?

Comments: 5 / Source: PC Gamer

Quoth the Jason, “The bloodletting begins.”

Greg Rice, Double Fine’s VP of business development and arguably their second most recognizable face, has left the company for a “new position elsewhere in the game industry.” A tweet string makes it pretty clear there is no bad blood behind the departure, though it seems somewhat prudent to speculate if the recent Microsoft acquisition would have changed his responsibilities within the company. And that’s what we do. Speculate.

The day you’ve been waiting for has arrived. Limited Run Games is continuing the mission they announced back at E3 to anoint select classics from the LucasArts library with handsome re-releases in beautifully curated collector’s boxes. You might recall that the first batch from their ongoing slate dropped back in June.

As usual, they are taking the responsibility that comes with holding a precious license for the LucasArts catalog seriously, by reserving this benediction for only the most deserving titles. This ability to exercise taste and judgment is critical, because the studio's library is a vast one, and you don’t want to squander the finite resources that plainly go into these packages on anything less than the undisputed gems. On that basis, you’ve probably already guessed that the latest re-releases are Star Wars Episode 1: Racer for N64 (available in regular and premium editions, both containing actual cartridges) and its sequel, Star Wars Racer Revenge for PS4 (the game was originally for PS2).

I speak for everyone when I say it couldn’t have happened to a better pair of games. The people making these calls really seem to know what they’re doing. I mean, God bless them.

GamesRadar got with Tim for the tenth anniversary of Brutal Legend, resulting in an interview that comes off as something of a postmortem for the studio's second project, and also arguably still it's last game of a giant scale. Read the article and renew your expertise of the game's wacky development history.  Remember that hilarious lawsuit, what with all the laughter it caused?

Tim also talks about how you can play against him in Brutal Legend online every "Rocktober" 13th, but that probably would be more relevant if we'd reported on this article when it was published. We'll try harder next year, as far as you know.

For now? Scummbuddy points us to a recent Archive.org, where 2,500 DOS games can be played to free through an emulator (DOSBox as it seems). Which games, you may ask? A quick search reveals:

Loom
The Secret of Monkey Island
Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge
Zak McKracken
Maniac Mansion

And so on, read the full LucasArts list for more. I haven't taken much time to look at this, but LeChuck's Revenge requires the code wheel at least. I assume all of this must be legal and all Actually, I don't assume that at all, so go look for both LucasArts and LucasFilm games while you still can.

Update: Turns out this is all a whole lot more legal than I had expected. Archive.org is, as it seems, exempt from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, due to their efforts to preserve our digital history. A simple summation of that can be read right here.

Tomorrow is Rocktober 13th, the 10th anniversary of the release of Brutal Legend! To celebrate DoubleFine is hosting a livestreaming event where you can play against Tim Schafer and other members of the Double Fine team.

As Lee Petty Tweeted earlier today, "You can beat him! @TimOfLegend is old and nowhere near his fighting weight!"

Join the melee tomorrow between 1 and 4pm PST (9pm to 1am GMT).

Image

That headline might sound like an anno-2001 fan-game, but it is, in fact, a reference to an Uncle Scrooge comic that comes loaded with Monkey Island references.

A Reddit… person… thing (Redditor?) brought this to light, and kindly posted a bunch of images from the story. Some highlights: Captain LeChunk, Brushwood, “LeChunk’s Revenge,” and the rather inspired Grizzlebert.

This Disney-Monkey Island thing seems to have come full circle.

Comments: 1 / Source: Benzo

PC Gamer has put together a small oral history of sorts about what they -- and probably many of us -- consider the best Psychonauts level, "The Milkman Conspiracy." A quote:

That was only possible because writing all the dialogue came last. After the designers and gameplay programmers had finished, Schafer would assess every piece of the level, and write dialogue based on all the work that came before. "That was the most solid foundation for the jokes to get layered on top," Robson says. "Half of my memory of Milkman is playing it without any of that dialogue, so that stuff still almost feels like a sort of recent edition. And then after you're done with the level, six or eight weeks later, this dialogue appears all of a sudden in the game."

Now run and read it.

So back in July, the official Arby's Twitter posted this.

That is a real thing.

Not sure what I can really add to this. I knew Stan was a whore, but...social media?

I'd make a smart aleck comment about how Arby's is doing more to promote Monkey Island than its actual copyright owner, but what point would I really be communicating? Everyone, by definition, is doing more to promote Monkey Island than its copyright holder.

J’accuse! See Stan there? That’s shamelessly stolen from the venerable SCUMM Bar. How do I know this, you may wonder. Simple. Notice Stan having a black something or other coming out his mouth. When Skyfox created that animation for TSB, he did it by hand, capturing each frame manually, removing the background . . . All while thinking Stan was smoking a cigar, when it was actually part of the background. Arby’s, have you no shame? - Remi

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