When Disney announced it would no longer make any games in-house, most people (particularly Disney Infinity fans were devastated. One man was inspired. Ron Gilbert hopes that if the company won’t use its game licenses, it will consider selling on to other developers, meaning he can reclaim the rights to Maniac Mansion and Monkey Island.
Gilbert posted his brief open letter to Disney over on Twitter, saying he’s happy to pay the publisher “real actual money” to buy the games:
Dear @Disney, now that you're not making games, please sell me my Monkey Island and Mansion Mansion IP. I'll pay real actual money for them.
— Ron Gilbert® (@grumpygamer) May 23, 2016
(And yes, he misspelled “Maniac Mansion” in his tweet – the veteran developer laughs that poor proof-reading is part of the charm of following him on social media.)
Gilbert is currently hard at work on Thimbleweed Park, a point-and-click adventure that’s a tribute to the 90s LucasArts games he was involved with (including, of course, Maniac Mansion and Monkey Island). As people keep suggesting crowdfunding options, he explains that his request to Disney is nothing to do with money, and entirely to do with wanting the rights to the games.
Disney, on the other hand, is a big fan of not-letting-go of things, so it’s likely it’ll keep a firm grip on the old-school adventures. A licensing deal isn’t ruled out, but whether Gilbert will be happy with that is yet to be seen.