Last month, the internet was roused from its dreary state by the announcement that Return to Monkey Island was in development and would mark a return to the franchise for its original creator, Ron Gilbert. Better yet, it’s slated to release at some point this year (we just don’t know if it’s coming to Switch yet!).
Fans of Secret of Monkey Island and Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge have no doubt taken great interest in the art style for Return to Monkey Island; moving away from the original games’ pixelated visuals, the new release has taken on a more modernised, abstract art style. Some folks are apparently not altogether pleased with this.
Although Rob Gilbert briefly mused on the idea of using pixel art for the new release, a blog post from the creator (thanks, VGC) clarifies that the original games weren’t pixel art games, but rather games that were created using the state-of-the-art tech at the time. He states that it’s not his intention to make a retro game with Return to Monkey Island:
“When Dave [Grossman] and I first started brainstorming Return to Monkey Island we talked about pixel art, but it didn’t feel right. We didn’t want to make a retro game. You can’t read an article about Thimbleweed Park without it being called a “throwback game”. I didn’t want Return to Monkey Island to be just a throwback game, I wanted to keep moving Monkey Island forward because it’s interesting, fun, and exciting. It’s what the Monkey Island games have always done.”
He went on to say that some comments from fans referencing the art style have made him “sad”, stating that it’s the most hardcore of fans that seemingly have the biggest problem with the art style:
“It’s ironic that the people who don’t want me to make the game I want to make are some of the hard core Monkey Island fans. And that is what makes me sad about all the comments.”
Personally, we think the art style is a nice evolution of what came before, but what do you reckon, dear readers? Take a look at some screenshots below:
What do you make of Ron Gilbert’s thoughts on fan feedback? Are you happy with the change in art style? Let us know in the comments below.