In Willy Morgan and the Curse of Bone Town, we embark on a mysterious adventure in a very special pirate world. Willy Morgan's story is not set in the 17th or 18th century, but in the 20th century. Computers, microwaves and cars have been around for a long time.
As a result, we do not go on a long journey with a ship or a galley, nor do we engage in exciting battles with sabers and pistols. Willy Morgan, the protagonist of the title, is a normal teenager who is suddenly plunged into the interwoven events of the dilapidated pirate town of Bone Town.
Source: PC games
The story begins with our protagonist Willy, who explains to us that his father has been missing for ten years to the day. But as luck would have it, a letter flutters through the Morgan family's door at this very moment. This is, of course, a letter from our father, Henry Morgan, who asks us to come to Bone Town and check in in room 09 of the old hostel. But that is easier said than done. Unfortunately Willy has no money for the accommodation and his bike has been scattered all over the house. So now it's up to us to find the parts of the bike and a little change. Here we get the basic principle and mechanics of the puzzles explained in a tutorial.
Old genre rabbits can skip this too, because the principle is well known. With the click of a mouse we can interact with the surroundings, interesting objects can be highlighted by pressing the space bar. Items that we can take with us end up in Willy's inventory. Here we can also combine several objects with each other to get new tools. We can also try to combine the items from our inventory with any items in our area at any time. As an example, we first have to find a wrench to loosen a screw. However, the screw is completely rusty. So we get sun oil as a lubricant. However, this has dried up and must be heated. So we combine the oil with our hot running desk lamp, then we combine the oil with the screw, which we can then loosen with the key. From Monkey Island to Leisure suit Larry is well known this principle, Willy Morgan does nothing different here.
Wes Anderson meets Disney animation
Source: PC games
What sets Willy Morgan apart from other genre representatives, however, is the style and the visual design. In the 3D environments, everything is very colorful and eye-catching, and all objects appear distorted and bent. There are hardly any columns, door frames or table legs here, instead everything is a bit crooked and crooked, corners are mostly soft and rounded. The interplay of the colorful design and the distorted surroundings creates an almost psychedelic impression that is not only very refreshing and new, but also fits perfectly with Willy Morgan's mystical adventure.
During the dialogues, the title unfortunately looks a bit old-fashioned. Here we mostly look at static character models where only the mouth moves. This often seems a bit stiff and awkward, and it is probably no longer up to date. But after a while you can see that because the encounters with the very different characters are all interesting and humorous. In Bone Town, for example, we meet a technology enthusiast who proudly tells us that he has set up a fully automated pub. By this he means that he has put a bunch of vending machines in his garage. When we ask him what else he does, he explains to us that he works with video games. As a developer? But no, definitely not, after all, he also wanted to make money. So he just plays games and writes helpful reviews and feedback for the developers. Oh wait …
Ahoy sailors, conspiracy in sight!
Source: PC games
One or the other may well be wondering what has to do with pirates now. On the one hand, the search for Willy's father is structured like a treasure hunt. We always receive hidden and cryptic clues from Henry Morgan that need to be followed through creative use of the items and the environment. Once in Bone Town, it is even our job to find and assemble the pieces of a treasure map. Second, most of the funny characters we encounter in the city are the descendants of famous pirates.
For example, early on we met a librarian named Margaret Teach, a descendant of the infamous pirate Blackbeard. Our uncle and the mayor of the city, Steve Bonnet, is a nod to the "gentleman pirate" Stede Bonnet, which some may already know from Assassins Creed 4: Black Flag. However, there are not only allusions to real pirates, but also to fictional privateers. For example, in the city there are posters of a notorious gang, whose members, Willy tells us, include "Luffy, Nami and Zoro". Other pop culture references are also hidden in the details. For example, we find the Captain America shield in the city’s gun shop.
Source: PC games
All characters seem to be involved in an old conspiracy. We often see people frantically picking up a telephone handset as soon as we leave a room. Also, the occasional cutscenes after finding some treasure map pieces give a view of an opponent, whose real face is always hidden. This is obviously very close to something, and does not want to be ruined this time. What this is about, what the conspiracy is about and what happened to Willy's father, of course, remained open at the end of the preview version. In fact, it ended up with a pretty nasty cliffhanger. In any case, we are very interested in finding out how things will go.
Source: PC games
Quite a damper for the fun of the game, however, was a strange "mistake" that occurred during the allusion. As soon as we left our house and reached Bone Town, there was no speech. Also reinstalling the game or changing the volume settings did not help. However, when we interacted with objects that we had already found in the prologue, our protagonist was talkative again. Here it can be strongly assumed that the corresponding voice files in the version being played have simply not been properly entered. However, if this remains the same in the final version, then this is a relatively big drawback for a modern game.
There are also deductions in the B-grade for handling the inventory. We open this by pressing the I key, and within the inventory we can then call up letters or maps with a right click of the mouse. So far so good. However, we cannot easily close the corresponding note. Once we have opened it, the inventory closes again. To close the note or map, we have to open the inventory again and right-click the object again. This is unnecessarily cumbersome, especially if you try a lot around. Here a button to close or put away an object would make a lot of sense.
(*) We have marked affiliate links with an asterisk. We receive a small commission for a purchase via our link and can thus partially finance the free-of-charge website with this income. There are no costs for the user.