The Secret of Monkey Island

The Secret of Monkey Island has to be one of the most beloved video games of all time. At least if you are a gamer, you probably hold this opinion. It has been hailed as one of the jewels of the adventure game genre and touted for having excellent character design, storyline, graphics and music.

Secret of Monkey Island

Game History

Lucasfilm Games was changed to LucasArts and under this company The Secret of Monkey Island was originally released. Ron Gilbert was primarily responsible for the game development. Aiding him were Dave Grossman and Tim Schafer.

LucasArts released the first version in 1990 on floppy disk in either 16 (EGA) or 256 (VGA) colors. It offered it in a CD-ROM as well. In this version, the interface was improved to list the inventory objects as visible pictures instead of word descriptions.

In version 2, Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge, the same optics exist. The third version is in CD format where LucasArts offered the audio soundtrack to Monkey Island Madness in the LucasArts Archives Volume III Collection. This version includes new songs in addition to the original music that can be played in a CD player.

The Secret of Monkey Island has been recognized as the first game of its kind to introduce humor. There are a few moments in the game that have given it this recognition like the legendary insult sword fight. The object is to win the fight with verbal insults to beat your opponent.

The fact that the main character constantly comments on everything is a point of humor, along with the used boat salesman, the vegetarian cannibals and the constant references to pop culture.

Its music gained notoriety as one of the best soundtracks for a computer game. Composed by Michael Land, it is a mixture of Caribbean sounds, reggae and dubstep music.

Secret of Monkey Island


Guybrush Threepwood is the main character and his love interest is the governor of Melee Island, Elaine Marley. Red skull, Sharptooth and Lemonhead are the cannibals, later to turn vegetarian.

Carla, a sword fighter lives in isolation on Melee Island. Captain Smirk is another quick witted swordmaster. Cobb is the henchman of the Bishop of Mandible and hangs out in the SCUMM bar.

In addition, there is Fester Shinetop, the sheriff of Melee Island and Herman Toothrot, Elaine’s grandfather. Mancomb Seepgood, who mocks the Guybrush name ironically, is a pirate, along with LeChuck. Meathook and Otis are Threepwood’s crew members.

Finally, there is the three-headed monkey, VooDoo Lady and Stan. The pirate leaders are there as well to help turn Guybrush Threepwood into a bonafide pirate.


Guybrush Threepwood lands on Melee Island where he learns from the pirate leaders how to become a pirate. The three pillars, not to be learned in a linear form like most games, are fencing, finding treasure and stealing loot.

While at the governor’s mansion, he falls in love with a beautiful young woman who just so happens to be the governor. Elaine is then kid-napped and the quest is on to rescue her.

System Requirements

The original game requirements are minimum MS-DOS 5.0 and a 386/33 processor. 1 MB EMS is required but 2 MB is recommended. For graphic quality, 256 color VGA/MCGA is recommended. A mouse is needed along with Sound Blaster, Adlib and Roland MT 32 for best sound quality.