Maybe it was already common knowledge that a LucasArts tester James ‘Purple’ Hampton was involved in the creation of Monkey Island 2’s much talked about ending, but I have to say that I was quite surprised to hear him say that:
“Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge would have to be my favorite LucasArts game. Ron Gilbert led the SCUMM team made up of people like Tim Schaefer and Dave Grossman, were open to feedback from us testers, and even included us in the brainstorming for the climactic ending to the game, where my suggestion to make it a ‘Saint Elsewhere’-like ending (where it is revealed it was all a dream) became the basis for the cliffhanger finale where it revealed LeChuck and Guybrush are two brothers in the ‘real world’ before seeing LeChuck’s eerie eyes glow.”
I can’t remember exactly, but I seem to remember Ron saying he struggled with coming up with an ending for MI2 and it was thought up pretty late in the process…
Which suggests that the whole “dream” element is more of a transitory/cliff-hanger plot device that may not really have much to do with the planned ending of the whole trilogy.
Well, there’s still all the “modern” contraptions present throughout MI1 and even more so part 2 that would suggest that the game is taking place in the “dream” world.
OTOH, LeChuck’s eerie eye glow would not fit into the “real” world, unless it’s really just another figment of Guybrush’s imagination.
Maybe the whole thing is even more complex than I thought so far, with dreams inside dreams. Voodoo might do that to people …
Or maybe it’s just one of those things that game designers could get away with in the 90s.
The ending is basically two star wars endings (“I am your…noooooo” and “take off my mask I want to see you with my own eyes”) and then have that meta it´s only a dream thing on top of it, combined with that glow eyes thing that is EXACTLY like the ending of Michael Jacksons Thriller Video (cue Vincent Price laugh).
It´s just a bunch of references to get any sort of ending. How people can take it that serious is to this day beyond me.
But that is more for the viewer and less for him. He doesn´t even see the glowing eyes himself.
It´s just some gotcha ending and those are very rarely thought out.
To be clear. I love the games, I love the humour, I love the puzzles. It was never strong on story, which is why I never cared too much that it was never “concluded”. Whatever that conclusion might be. Because the way the characters are constructed it could have been just a weekly reset like on a TV show were LeChuck just returns indefinitely and Guybrush has always new adventures.
“You got away THIS TIME Guybrush!” you know that sort of thing.
I feel the same way - I know many people want to know the “secret”, and it is interesting to speculate, but yes, the humour, locations, characters, art, dialog, music, etc. are what makes it so great, to me at least.
I think that’s similar to the Space Quest games… it’s difficult to even remember the actual plots of them, it’s all about the jokes, the locations, the sarcasm, the art, etc.
I think the main reason I would like to know how the ending of MI2 fits into the plot is more because I want to know what the locations would be like in MI3a, like where would we get to explore next.
Yeah, that may be the intriguing part, because with that as a springboard they could have gone anywhere.
Yeah, I´d loved more Monkey Island. And I guess the classic graphic style would have helped too. But there is no way we´re gonna get that now. It´s never gonna be the same game it would have been in the mid 90s.