This review focuses on the WiiWare version of the title. Screenshots are from the PC release of Tales of Monkey Island: Chapter Two The Siege At Spinner Cay. Originally posted on Default Prime.
A month has passed and a new chapter for Tales of Monkey Island has hit both WiiWare and PC. The first chapter had excellent writing and proved that TellTale Games could capture the essence of the past Monkey Island games. It still had its issues though, some of the puzzles were a bit confusing and it didn’t really break any new ground in the point and click genre. On top of that the game had a sloppy port to WiiWare which suffered constant frame rate issues along with many other problems. Can Tales of Monkey Island Chapter 2 live up to the first chapter in the episodic series and is the WiiWare version a suitable alternative this time around?
Chapter two takes place exactly where chapter one left off, with Guybrush Threepwood at the end of a pirate hunter’s blade. After she cuts off and escapes with his hand, Guybrush sets sail to the Jerkbait Islands to find Elaine. Once he arrives he finds out that Merfolk have taken residence there and they are having a dispute with a group of pirates because the pirates want the ancient summoning artifacts to locate La Esponge Grande. Guybrush must sail around the neighboring islands trying to find these artifacts before the other pirates do. The adventure folds out nicely as its own individual story and connects well with the first game. The writing is excellent just as before along with characters who are entertaining and unique like the first chapter’s characters.
Point and click adventure’s depend largely on figuring out the designer’s logic. The problem is when the designer’s solution is a bit illogical. Tales of Monkey Island, like any other point and click game, has this same trait. Most of the puzzles can be solved without help, but it takes a bit too much guessing on some of them rather then using problem solving skills. The hint system is a bit useless in chapter two. Through about the last 60% of the game it just keeps saying “Guess I need to go collect some more booty, argh~!” when trying to solve something that doesn’t even require an extra item. Otherwise it runs at a fairly decent pace; but stopping and testing every possibility, even though the solution is obvious, is just as entertaining to see character’s reactions.
The PC version is significantly better then the Wii version as long as you use a PC with the recommended specs. If you have a PC that can run Tales of Monkey Island then you are definitely better off playing that version. But with the release of the second chapter, Wii owner’s are in luck. The Wii version’s frame rate problem has been significantly improved upon. It still stumbles here and there, but it runs much smoother then the first chapter ever did. The graphics still are blurry in some places in the Wii version but overall it still looks better then most WiiWare titles. The voice acting is excellent just like before and brings life to the characters. But again in the Wii version’s it’s still compressed but if you lived through the first one then you will live through the second one. A few cases of audio overlapping came up in the Wii version again but it’s so rare its barely even noticeable.
Overall Tales of Monkey Island: Chapter 2 The Siege of Spinner Cay is a great entry in the episodic series. If players who enjoyed the first one, will enjoy the second one. There is nothing here that is really a game changer though. Its length is about the same as the first title, but after the initial play through theres nothing to bring you back. If you can get over some of the illogical puzzles, there is a great adventure to be seen that will keep you laughing the entire way. The WiiWare version is a much better substitute now, but the PC version is still superior. If you enjoyed the first one, definitely download this one right away.