Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge - Pretty in Pink

OK, where was I? That’s right, I’d just finished exploring Scabb Island, Booty Island and Phatt Island. It’s these moments that I both look forward to and dread in adventure games. On the one hand, with no more locations to explore (at least for now), it’s finally time to take stock of my inventory and see if I can actually solve puzzles. On the other hand, if I struggle to actually solve anything, then I have to face up to the fact that I’m stuck and start revisiting everywhere all over again. I’d just made a wager with the egotistical little fisherman on the Phatt Island wharf (that I could catch a bigger fish than him), so before I left there I pondered what this puzzle was all about. Why would I need his fishing rod? I had no idea. How could I possibly catch a fish without having a rod of my own? Could I make one? A quick look at my inventory told me it was very likely indeed. I had a piece of string, and I also had a stick that looked pretty suitable. I tried using the string on the stick: “I think I’m too clumsy to hold the stick and tie a knot at the same time.” Oh come on Guybrush, do I have to hold it for you? I tried to figure out how I might achieve the task but couldn’t.

Meanwhile the cheeky little bugger has got a huge head-start on me.

Looking through my inventory had given me a few ideas, so I set off to try them out. The first thing I did was head back to Booty Island to have a chat with Captain Kate Capsize. Ever since I’d won the holiday to Hook Island, I’d wondered whether she might be the one that would take me there. I still didn’t have the 6000 pieces of eight that she was demanding, but I was interested to know whether my dialogue options would change. They didn’t. I hadn’t given up on the idea, but would have to come back if and when I strike it rich. The next location I went to was the inn on Scabb Island. Finding the banana in the jail had reminded me that Jojo the monkey sometimes performs there. When I walked in I found that the monkey was indeed there now, making me all but certain that I was onto something. I tried giving the banana to Jojo and he seemed pretty keen, but the innkeeper sternly told me to stop bugging the monkey, once again ruining any chance I had.

It's not a good sign that I couldn't at least mention the holiday, so maybe I'm off the mark with that thought.

Hmmm...what could I possibly want from the monkey anyway?

I wasn’t done in the inn though, as when I’d previously tried to buy a drink, the innkeeper had asked me for ID. I just so happened to have a library card showing that I was 21 now. I was able to show it to him when he requested ID, and to my relief, he was satisfied that I was old enough to partake. He did ask me whether the name Guybrush was French, but accepted my answer that it was actually Fictional. There were three beverages on offer, being Yellow Beard’s Baby, Bloody Stump and Blue Whale. I bought one of each. When I’d asked him about the inn’s non-alcoholic “near grog” last time I was there, he’d informed me that Captain Kate Capsize had purchased the last glass of it. I asked him whether they now had any, but he told me they wouldn’t have any more for a month. I wasn’t sure what the relevance was, but it seemed like something I would need to remember down the track. In my inventory I now had a red drink, a blue drink and a yellow drink. Something told me that these drinks needed to be mixed to assist me in winning the spitting contest. This wasn’t a particularly logical thought, so I can only imagine there’s a memory held in the back of my brain from when I played the game in the early 90s. I experimented, and found that if I mixed the blue and the yellow drinks, I ended up with a green one. When I drank the toxic looking concoction, Guybrush commented that it made his spit thick. Yes! This must be what I need to win!

Alright! Time to go win that contest!

Excited, I had Captain Dread take me straight back to Phatt Island and raced over to the spitting contest. I sucked back some of the green drink, hocked up a giant loogie, and spat. My phlegm-based projectile flew further than any of my previous attempts, impressing the Spitmaster: “What’s this? A surprise turnaround in performance? Looks like third place.” What? Third place?! I had another go, this time drinking stacks of the green stuff and spending quite a while preparing my spit. I managed second place. Well that was progress. Perhaps I just needed to drink enough of the stuff or hock up enough mucus. I made about ten more attempts, but no matter what I did, I just couldn’t get across the line. In the end I had to assume that there must be another ingredient that I needed to mix with the alcohol to make it even thicker. Nothing I had in my inventory did the trick, so I gave up for now and moved onto my next idea. I made my way back to Booty Island and out to the big tree. I’d previously attempted to climb the tree by using my stick on the second hole. It hadn’t worked that time, but perhaps it would with the more solid piece of timber I'd collected from under the mattress in the jail. Nope! I really wasn’t having much luck here. Perhaps I could use the paddle that was stuck in the first hole of the tree somewhere else? I took it, just in case, and continued to look at everything in my inventory while thinking of each puzzle that I hadn’t yet solved. I soon discovered something I’d completely missed earlier…

Applause? I don't want applause! I want...actually, I have no idea what the prize is for winning.

But it's a round peg. Surely it fits into a round hole!

When I clicked Look and then selected the invitation to Governor Marley’s party, Guybrush read it out to me: “Don’t forget to bring this invitation when you pick up your complimentary costume! Please present invitation at door and wear your costume.” Clearly I’d never actually looked at the invitation before, as this was a very valuable piece of information indeed. I travelled back to the costume shop and gave my ticket to the shopkeeper. “Ah, you have a costume on reserve! Well that’s a different story! Let’s see…your costume is right over here.” He led me to the right of screen where a pink dress hung on a hanger. “Well, here it is. You’ll surely be the life of the party in this.” What? Really? This is my costume!? I had a good giggle, then picked it up and made my way up to the Guard Kiosk near the Governor’s mansion. This time when the woman asked me whether I’d brought a costume and invitation, I was able to answer in the affirmative. She told me that I better put my costume on before heading up to the party. Much to the woman’s surprise, Guybrush started to take his clothes off right in front of her. “No, no! Not here! Go in the bushes or something.” Guybrush did exactly that, returning shortly afterwards looking just gorgeous in the dress and his pirate boots.

Perhaps not the costume I would have chosen, but it should get me into the party.

What, you don't want to see me naked? You realise other women would kill for the chance!

A classic LucasArts moment.

Now that I was in my costume and had provided the woman with my invitation, I was finally allowed to attend the party. I walked up a pathway, across a natural bridge, and then found myself standing in front of a pretty spectacular mansion. As I approached the front door, I came upon a dog resting in front of it and a gardener raking up leaves nearby. The dog didn’t seem bothered by my presence in the slightest, and while it seemed likely that he might fetch one of my sticks, using one on the canine only resulted in Guybrush telling me that he was “fetching enough already in this dress”. I couldn’t find anything to do, but did note that when I tried certain items the game told me that they didn’t seem to smell interesting to him. Perhaps I needed to find something that does? The gardener wasn’t interested in me either, telling me to leave him alone. When I noticed that I could walk around the side of the house, I decided to check that out before entering the front door.

I imagine Guybrush is really regretting breaking up with Elaine now. That's some home!

Yeah, until it tries to bite your face off.

Behind the mansion was a back door, and near it was a garbage bin and some boxes. A sign next to the door said “Shhhh! Please don’t bang garbage cans. Governor sleeping upstairs.” I thought I might be able to rummage through the rubbish to find something that would interest the dog, but Guybrush refused to look in it. The boxes were empty, but Guybrush made a point of telling me that they smelled like fish. I tried pushing the bin, hoping to go against the sign’s instructions, and it worked. “CRASH!” A chef came charging out of the kitchen, clearly not impressed: “Hey! What’s all the racket? Don’t mess with the Governor’s cans! Who do you think you are?” Before I could tell him who I was and explain that I have spent much time messing with her cans previously, he went back inside and slammed the door. While I didn’t think it would work, I tried simply opening the door and walking in behind him. To my surprise, it did work, and once inside I could watch him going about his business. Pixel hunting revealed a bucket of fish on the table, but as soon as I walked near it, the chef noticed me and shouted “Hey! Kitchen staff only!”. Guybrush apologised and walked back out. It suddenly dawned on me that if I could get my hands on one of those fish, it would likely allow me to win my wager with the fisherman. Sadly, I couldn’t figure out a way to get one, and eventually walked back around to the front of the house to try something else.

The chef became more and more aggressive each time I bugged him, swinging his bloodied butcher's knife threateningly.

Say, you don't need all that fish there do you?

The dog still paid no attention to me, so I walked straight into the mansion through the front door. Inside were a whole heap of costumed party attendees, drinking what appeared to be red wine and chatting. As soon as I walked in I noticed a piece of the Big Whoop map in a frame up above the fireplace. Before doing anything else I clicked Pick Up and then on the map, and was shocked when I suddenly had it in my inventory. Surely it wasn’t going to be that easy! I tried talking to all the guests, but none of them would pay any attention to me, continuing their conversations as though I wasn’t there. The only other thing I could interact with in the room were some fish bones on the table, but Guybrush refused to pick them up as they were already picked clean. I’d hoped that I would be able to go upstairs and see Elaine, but I could find no way to get past the couple pashing on the bottom step. Well, at least I had part of the map. I had a strange feeling though that I wasn’t simply going to be able to walk out with it.

Yep, it seems everyone went to the same costume shop. Hey, isn't that a piece of the Big Whoop map!?

Here's the first piece of the map. Fish appears to be the theme of today's post.

My intuition in this case was spot on. As soon as I walked through the door, the dog started sniffing at me and then barking. The gardener ran over and said “What’s the matter there, Guybrush?” Well it’s nice to know that Elaine still remembers me enough to name her dog after me. I told the gardener that the crazy mutt was trying to kill me, but he demanded to know who I was. I told him I was Mr. Threepwood, and then demanded that he take me to the Governor. He thought this was a good idea, but only because he thought my behaviour was suspicious and wanted her to know about it. Before he took me to Elaine, he demanded I empty my pockets. This act obviously wouldn’t end well, so Guybrush attempted to run. He didn’t get far, as the gardener thew a rake in his path. Just as occurred in all the cartoons I watched as a kid, Guybrush stepped on the rake and it smashed him in the face, knocking him out.

This would have been a great time to use the "Is that a three-headed monkey behind you" line.

I'm beginning to question whether this guy is "just your average gardener".

Next thing either Guybrush or I knew, the gardener waltzed into Elaine’s bedroom and told her all about what had occurred: “Governor, I caught one of your party guests making off with your grandfather’s map.” She told him to bring the thief in, and was shocked to find that it was her previous lover. “Of all the parties in all the houses on all the islands in the Caribbean, he had to crash mine!” Guybrush did his best to smooth over the situation, but Elaine appeared determined not to look at or talk to him. She eventually gave him a mouthful, telling him that they were a mistake, and that he was breaking their agreement by being there. Suddenly I was given dialogue options. It looked like it was going to be up to me to make things right between the two ex-lovers.

I'm thinking the real reason Elaine left Guybrush was due to his choice of pet names.

I always feel safe when choosing dialogue in LucasArts games. There are no dead ends after all. But for some reason I felt a lot of pressure to get this particular conversation right.

I chose the most soppy, apologetic options possible, and after four or five carefully selected options, Elaine came around. "Oh, Guybrush, I know I shouldn't have anything to do with you, but there's something about your weakness and ineptitude that I find infectious." Alas, Guybrush decided to undo all my good work by responding with "Does that mean you're going to let me have the map?" This unsurprisingly infuriated the Governor, who opened the window, threw the map out, and then stormed out of the room. Both Guybrush and I realised at the same time that we could at least explore the room now that she was gone. I soon found that I could interact with a bust, a chest, a coat, a changing screen, a mirror, a couple of pillows, an oar on the wall, and the now-open window. Most of them resulted in nothing important, but the bust and the chest were basically a double-whammy joke. When I looked at the bust, Guybrush said "You know, I heard some guys talking about Marley's bust. This must be it." The chest offered up a similar theme: "It's impolite to stare at a woman's chest." I knew as soon as I saw the oar what it's purpose was, as it looked almost identical to the paddle I found in the big tree. I became even more certain of this theory when I found I could indeed pick it up. Now...I guess I better go chase that map down. It's only one of four after all!

Hmmm...this is one puzzle that's going to take a lot of effort to solve.

Session Time: 0 hours 45 minutes
Total Time: 6 hours 25 minutes


  1. If nobody realised it earlier, my profile picture is a modified screenshot of that moment of Guybrush opening his shirt in this game. ;-)

    1. Ah, so it is! Classic moment.

    2. Whoah. I never even noticed it was a Guybrush - shows how much attention I pay to avatars

  2. For anyone wondering, my comment on the last post about struggling to make progress was related to the next post. Boy do I have to work hard in that one!

    1. The best thing to do in MI2, is when you feel stuck, go and visit another island for a while. Sometimes you'll see something you'd not noticed before, or maybe something changed, or maybe you have a way to progress elsewhere.

    2. Spoiler - Do Not Read Trickster

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    3. Npghnyyl, urer vf n zhpu orggre sybjpuneg: uggc://vzntrf.zepfoze.pbz/zv2chmmyrf.cat

      Sebz guvf negvpyr: uggc://tnznfhgen.pbz/oybtf/ZnephfOhzre/20150302/237763/Qrfvtavat_chmmyrf_sbe_nqiragher_tnzrf__Nanylmvat_Zbaxrl_Vfynaq_2_chmmyr_qrcraqrapvrf_naq_onynapvat.cuc

  3. In my opinion the guard near the Governor’s mansion does not look female, more like a guy with a permanent wave....does he not?;)

  4. Well, the green drink has a logic to it since we saw Largo spitting a green blob (that Guybrush used to make the voodoo doll) you could guess that blue and yellow would make that drink since green is made from blue and yellow normally. I don't remember if there is another hint in this game cause I might mix together a reference in future games. Of course I know this in hindsight since I couldn't get it as a kid.

    1. You're correct that the puzzle itself is quite logical. I was merely commenting on my absolute certainty that the alcohol would play at least some role in the solution, which is something I knew based on a distant memory rather than any conclusion made from logical deduction.

  5. Sharon den Adel, the singer of the dutch band Within Temptation, used to wear dresses with army boots in her concerts. Maybe she took the idea from Guybrush?

    1. Didn't she sing on Tobias Sammet's Avantasia? I think the first two albums?

    2. Yes, she was one of the guest singers.

  6. Time for another comparison...

    It may be easier for me to tell you what's the SAME as the LITE version in this post, as the first half of your post contains locations and characters that were unavailable to me - no fisherman, no Kate, no Jojo, no spitting contest and no holey tree.

    I used the invitation to get the costume and get into the party, and most of that section went the same for me, with the following two exceptions...

    The chef didn't come out when I banged Elaine's cans (so I didn't get the double entendre joke about messing with the governor's cans), but I could open the kitchen door anyway.

    After speaking to Elaine, I wasn't able to explore her room (missing the chest/bust double entendre jokes in the process) but was sent straight downstairs.

    So what we can take away from this section is that this game really doesn't want the LITE players to read any boob jokes