Tales of Monkey Island: Episode Three Impressions – In The Belly Of The Beast

We're pretty much at the midpoint in Tales of Monkey Island episodes. At the risk of spoilers, let's just say things are looking pretty icky for Guybrush Threepwood.

Being inside a manatee will do that – and I don't just mean in its mouth, I mean deep inside its bowels. Our smart-talking hero finds himself stranded there and remarkably undigested after a run in with Mighty Pirate Hunter Morgan LeFlay. The two of them wind up trapped with a series of colorful characters and piles of odd stuff inside the manatee and the majority of the third episode will focus on Guybrush and Morgan working together to get out of their gross surroundings.

Tales of Monkey Island: Episode Three Impressions – In The Belly Of The Beast

Sadly, Telltale wasn't ready to let anybody get their hands on Episode Three (which comes out at the end of this month). But they were happy to walk me through the end of one fetch-quest sequence where Guybrush has a "face-off" with another manatee-stranded pirate whose vote he needs to make some other stranded pirate do… something. Hey, they weren't going to reveal the whole plot to me in one sitting.

The face-off game looks to be a challenge where you've got to click three options out of a menu and hope that they're the right combination to out-gross-out the pirate. Like the inventory system – which is just the same as it was in the first two episodes – there will be some hints to figuring out what to click when. But random combinations could always pay off, too.

The interesting thing to me is the change of setting. In the previews two episodes, Guybrush and other characters were traipsing around jungle settings – which must've made it really easy for Telltale's art team to just re-use stuff. However, the developer says they were already working on the inside of the manatee level since around episode two – and while we won't see this setting again in Episode four, it just might make a comeback in the "very interesting" ending they're promising.

Tales of Monkey Island: Episode Three Impressions – In The Belly Of The Beast

Telltale is shooting to wrap up Tales of Monkey Island by the end of November, give or take a few weeks. It'll be a little while before we can expect to see a compilation game in box form (which is how I like to buy them), what with Sam & Max Season 3 in the works. But with a few more pirate-themed deals along the lines of the Talk Like A Pirate Day promotion, maybe you can wrangle all five of the episodes together for a reasonable price.

Tales of Monkey Island, Episode Three is out September 29.