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You may our may not have seen/heard this one before, but either way, why not relive the proof-of-concept voice-over for Monkey Island 2?

Starring Ron Lussier as Guybrush and Aric Wilmunder as Rapp Scallion.

For those who don't Twitter:

That's two hours from now, so find a comfy chair.

Comments: 9 / Source: Twitter

I ruffled some feathers earlier this week when I underestimated the nostalgia people had for Star Wars Episode 1: Racer. The repudiation of my assumptions continues with this paean to the Star Wars: Episode 1 - The Phantom Menace game published by The RetroBeat. Their argument is worthy of Criterion Collection liner notes:

Look, I’m not trying to suggest that the Episode I game is some massive hidden gem. It has not held up as well as other Star Wars games from that era, such as Episode I: Racer and Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast. It also has some glaring problems, such as an awkward camera angle that is positioned far too high above your character and some lazy voice-acting.

But The Phantom Menace also has a lot of merit. It’s a snapshot of a much different time in the history of licensed video games, when developers were struggling to make 3D experiences that felt like true interactive versions of the moves they were based on. Eventually, this practice became much too expensive and difficult to create with a release date guaranteed to coincide with the release of a film, so now we see movies flock to the mobile space for their licensed games.

You know what, I'm just going to keep my mouth shut this time. Except to say this: If Masters of Teräs Käsi gets some sort of lionizing reappraisal next, a straitjacket's getting appended to my wardrobe rack.

The arms race for undeserving re-releases continues to heat up! Having already received a bogglingly reverent N64 cartridge recreation from Limited Run Games a while back, the 1999 bestseller Star Wars Episode 1: Racer is now getting ported to Switch and PS4 as well. Be amazed as James Vicari of Aspyr attempts to frame the most obvious tie-in product ever conceived as some sort of crown jewel of the LucasArts catalog. But he didn't count on the pushback from those notorious skeptics at StarWars.com. I'm kidding, of course:

StarWars.com: Star Wars Episode I: Racer is really fondly remembered. What do you think is the legacy of that game?

James Vicari: Legacy is an interesting thing to try and talk about. There’s like the pure metrics aspect, right? It’s one of the bestselling racing games of all time. At some level that means something, but it’s not the thing that makes people talk about a game 20 years later. That’s an intangible. And with Racer, I think its legacy is a very specific feeling of joy. When we announced it within the company, it was crazy how many faces lit up. Once we had it up and running, people from every department kept dropping in to check it out. If you’ve played it, you know. There’s just something about being in one of the coolest scenes from a Star Wars movie.

StarWars.com: Why is reintroducing Racer important to Aspyr?

James Vicari: Honestly, because good games should never be forgotten and great games deserve to be revisited as much as possible. I think Racer, like Jedi Academy and Jedi Outcast before it, has two crucial qualities: it’s a great game and it has emotional resonance. Those are very important to us. We really believe in reuniting fans with something they cherished, or connecting a new audience with something they may have missed.

Get ready to re-live the emotional resonance of Star Wars Episode 1: Racer May 12th.

MixnMojo may never sleep, but we are pretty damned lazy. How else can you explain taking two weeks to report on an amazing 3D animation featuring Ben Throttle? (Thanks to Scummbuddy for bring it to our attention.)

Red Knuckles Animation Studio are the incredible talents behind an ultra-realistic re-imagining of Full Throttle... that actually works.

Image

I'd embed the video right here but we don't support Vimeo. So here's a link instead: Full Throttle 2020.

Spectacular, eh?

It just isn't Lent without an anniversary of the cancellation of Sam & Max: Freelance Police.

Kind of weird to keep marking it every year like a bunch of creeps, I'll admit, but Mojo never was good at letting things go, and the event is, for better or for worse, an inextricable part of the site's history. And we'll be exploring that link in some depth soon.

I've recently let the cat out of the bag that we're at work on a big fat Sam & Max 2 feature. And when I say this article has got a calorie surplus, I'm talking President Taft, here. And we can't wait for you to see it, but unfortunately we need even more time to address a few...complexities...between now and publish time. And, to be frank, some of them were pretty darned avoidable. I don't why, for example, Remi insisted that the totality of the White Album be licensed for continuous streaming on each page of the article, but there's just no getting him to budge on his artistic principles. Your patience is appreciated.

In the meantime, make the most the occasion by reheating a Glazed MacGuffin or two and getting your pre-order of those deluxe figurines in. And have a thought for a graphic adventure that was guillotined amidst that bloody period of revolution in the Spring of 2004.

Our own Benny thought you should all check this out. Behold the laudable work of "Dude 27th":

Benny would have told you this himself, but the torrid fortune he's raked in from Quick and Easy Software over the years has enlarged his head, and at this point he exclusively communicates with his fellow Mixnmojo staffers in the form of snail mail dispatched through an elaborate network of high-priced attorneys. So it's left up to me, a man of the people, to pass the word along.

Edit: And because we're unstoppable lunatics who just can't help ourselves, here's a link to the mod to you can track its progress and support its creator.

Comments: 2 / Source: Bennyboy

Some of us might not have seen this one coming. From Limited Run’s Twitter:

Join Guybrush Threepwood as he seeks to complete three trials on Mêlée Island and become a full-fledged pirate. And all is not what it seems...
The Secret of Monkey Island gets a Limited Run for the Sega CD on Friday, February 28 at 10am & 6pm ET on http://limitedrungames.com.

Well, huh! Mojo will return with more.

When they're not productively pondering what makes the Indiana Jones movies problematic, Vice Magazine can apparently find time to dash off the odd Loom retrospective.  And they're pretty good at it!  Check out their newly published appreciation for Brian Moriarty's spellbinding point 'n click classic in honor of its 30th anniversary.

Now for somebody to get the EGA version of the game commercially available.

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

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.

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.

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.

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

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

After the controversy surrounding the SCUMM Bar theme, an anonymous source going simply by Bozeke has pointed us to Burt Ives’s "Go Tell Aunt Rhody," a 1956 1752 ditty which sounds eerily familiar . . .

I do believe Stan’s theme appeared first in LeChuck’s Revenge. Follow the notes, and we undoubtedly will find the elusive Secret of Monkey Island.

(And yes, this is pretty much all we have to post about these days.)

The theme, that is, not the honorable web site.

@Nicozilla_FR points us to a Reddit thread, where the SCUMM Bar theme's origins are revealed . . .

So now I guess we have a name: "Oh Good Ale Thou Art My Darling."

(And before the usual suspects start whining, I know it's not actually a rip-off, but it's interesting the original material wasn't credited. A very quick search reveals the song at least has existed as a recording since the fifties.)

Update! Our crack reporter, elTee, has through diligent research confirmed the song has existed at least since 1859.

Well, color me surprised that Limited Run Games seems to have produced genuine, no-joke NES and Game Boy cartridges for their re-release of the very first Star Wars console game, along with a physical PS4 port of Bounty Hunter, on Friday.  (It is especially impressive since, didn't Capcom consider that for Mega Man 9 before deciding it was cost-prohibitive?)  Not that I am unequal to the challenge of finding fault, as I sense no effort to replicate the mail-order hint book. Check out the packaging for yourself on Limited Run Games' Instagram page.

This is a little frustrating for me personally, I must admit.  LucasArts made impressive contributions to a number of consoles, but the NES wasn't a platform they did very well on; some would argue that their debut for the system, the iconic (and in-house, unlike the title being awarded this treatment) port of Maniac Mansion, was the only project worth a damn, with all due respect to Defenders of Dynatron City.  It was the gateway drug for many to the LEC adventure catalogue, and it comes with a nice juicy censorship controversy to boot.

Alas, as always, Star Wars gets the slot.  But don't let me stink up the joint with my griping, because this is still really cool.  Be sure to head over to the nearest Limited Run Games web presence on Friday to place your order.

Our thanks to Scummbuddy for bringing this to our attention

Or so we can just assume, based on Twitter’s very own @samedods who tweeted to us a Limited Run trailer of "collector’s editions of classic Star Wars games". That in itself is probably cool if you care about those kind of things, but more interestingly, the Amiga version of the Monkey Island theme plays at the end of the trailer. So, you know, 2 + 2 probably equals 4, and that is the conclusion I have decided to make.

Update! THE @fantasticleak16 has even more: “@mixnmojo MI1, MI2 and Curse are in the list of Limited Run’s announced titles! And it looks like some sort of Collectors Edition may be coming! Check out the bottom of the page... Link

I have no clue what this Limited Run shenanigans is, but woo all the same!

In response to the Monkey Island tribute tweet that Remi just posted about, Craig Derrick took the opportunity to weigh in on the series’ dormancy with a tweet of his own, which read simply:

Maybe I should do something about that.

If you need a refresher on who Craig Derrick is, he was the figurehead of the so-called “Heritage” team at LucasArts during the 2008-2011ish arena, which more or less coincided with the Darrell Rodriguez epoch. Working in the periphery, this small group of optimistic developers gave us the Monkey Island special editions (what little that the powers-that-be didn’t delegate to Singapore, anyway) and Lucidity. These folks obviously intended to do more original and legacy projects along those lines, but as with every other stab at turning LEC into an interesting development studio after the turn of the century, it was smothered with a pillow. You can read one sobering account of the life and death of “Heritage” here.

As a nice contrast to our undying cynicism, Derrick remained optimistic and committed to keeping that candle lit as recently as the year of the Disney acquisition. Derrick, in fact, still walks those halls; while LucasArts as it once existed is gone, Derrick remains a “Managing Producer” at Lucasfilm these days. What that actually means is unclear, though going by his blog it’s Star Wars related.

But hey, read into his comment what you will. At the very least he may know which cages to shake to get some more of those Double Fine remasters off the ground. It’s not like Brian Moriarty hasn’t been vocal about Loom, nor has Bill Tiller been bashful about his desire to repaint The Curse of Monkey Island for the HD era. And as long as he’s granting wishes, why not get that last 40% of Freelance Police’s development Kickstarter’d? Worst case scenario, we’ll have another Kierdorf situation and enough belly laughs for many a year to come.

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