King's Quest (2015 video game)

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King's Quest
King's Quest 2015 cover.png
Developer(s) The Odd Gentlemen
Publisher(s) Sierra Entertainment
Distributor(s) Activision
Director(s) Matt Korba
Series King's Quest
Engine Unreal Engine 3
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows
PlayStation 3
PlayStation 4
Xbox 360
Xbox One
Release date(s)
Genre(s) Adventure
Mode(s) Single-player

King's Quest is an ongoing episodic video game series developed by The Odd Gentlemen, published by Sierra Entertainment and distributed by Activision. It is a new reimagining of the King's Quest series. While it is an adventure game like the previous games in the series, the interface is not fully point-and-click (the PC version only uses point and click for the dialogue and first person scenes).[2]

The game is one of several attempts at resurrecting or rebooting the King's Quest franchise. The new chapters are seen as neither a remake nor necessarily a sequel but a "re-imagining" (the original games are considered to be part of the canon of the new series, as each chapter will take place between those games, but previous games may be reinterpreted in completely new ways (such as the reimagined dragon well scene inspired by events in King's Quest I)).[3][4] It is not, however, considered King's Quest IX, according to Matt Korba.

The game is to be released in five parts between 2015 and 2016, with an optional playable Epilogue only included in King's Quest: The Complete Collection edition.[5]


Unlike previous King's Quest video games, the new King's Quest is not a point-and-click adventure. Instead, it is an adventure game that tasks players to control Graham, who ventures to different places to become a knight. The movement of Graham can be completely controlled by players.[2] According to Matt Korba, the game's creative director, the game's controls focuses on "one-button context." As a result, the game does not have any complicated interfaces or controls.[3] Throughout the game, players can interact with different environmental objects. For instance, players can pick up, gather and inspect different scenery items.[6] They can switch to first-person perspective when inspecting them. The game is narrated by the old Graham and his granddaughter Gwendolyn. Players' actions in the game change the narrative. For instance, performing certain actions unlocks additional dialogue. When players make wrong decisions and die, Graham replies with phrases like "That’s what would have happened if I did that," before players respawn. Players also make decisions throughout the game that are divided into three different approaches, namely bravery, wisdom and compassion.[6] Actions performed by players have consequences and impact the game's story, and as a result, change the game's overall experience. Most of these choices are gameplay-based. According to Korba, all the choices made by Graham are heroic, and there is no way for players to build a "bad" Graham.[3]

While the first section of the game is linear, levels open up eventually. Players are free to explore levels, and the game does not feature any prescribed or predetermined paths.[3] Players can also use a variety of methods to complete their objectives, and are tasked to solve various puzzles in the game, even though there are no fixed solutions to these puzzles.[7] Players can also enter conversations with anyone in the game.[6] The game features branching dialogue.[3] In addition, the game features some action sequences, quick-time events, and on-rail platform elements.[8]


King Graham shares his previous adventures with his curious grand daughter, Gwendolyn. It is through these tales that Gwendolyn learns about the life led by her grandfather.

Chapter Release date
Windows, PS3 & PS4 Xbox 360 & Xbox ONE
Chapter I: "A Knight to Remember" July 28, 2015[1] July 29, 2015[1]
Graham's journey of becoming a knight begins in this chapter. It takes place before the original King's Quest as being remembered by the present day Graham -who is now old- narrating it to his grand daughter, Gwendolyn.
Chapter II: "Rubble Without a Cause"[9] December 15, 2015 December 15, 2015
Graham recounts his first adventure as a newly crowned king of Daventry, to save the kingdom from invading goblins.
Chapter III: "TBD" TBA TBA
Chapter IV: "TBD" TBA TBA
Chapter V: "TBD" TBA TBA
Epilogue: "TBD" TBA TBA


There have been multiple attempts to create a sequel or reboots to King's Quest: Mask of Eternity, all of which never went past the announcement or concept stages.

After the release of Mask of Eternity, Sierra had planned to develop a sequel, and announced its release in King's Quest: Mask of Eternity Prima's Official Strategy Guide.[10] Roberta Williams had revealed her plans, had she made a sequel, with an interview with Talkspot. Either a new main character would be introduced, or possibly the main protagonist would be Connor from Mask of Eternity, as King Graham was too old to go on his own adventures, and Alexander was busy in his role as king of the Land of Green Isles.[11] Other ideas included massive multiplayer component, and love triangle between Rosella, Edgar, and Connor. Although sales for King's Quest 8 were more successful than King's Quest VII, and other adventure games at the time of its release, they did not reach intended numbers, and future Sierra game sequels in King's Quest and other IPs were cancelled (with exception of Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude).

After Vivendi Universal purchased Sierra, they had a new King's Quest title in development between 2001 and 2002. It was cancelled before going into production and the game never made it past the prototype stage. However, images of two renders of the playable character were leaked to the public. The elderly bearded King Graham[12] wore a crown-like feathered armored adventurer's cap (inspired by Graham's original headwear) and wielded a giant sword and wore full armor. Because the character had the ability to flip in the air, the prototype might have been a third-person action adventure.

In addition, Silicon Knights worked on a prototype for a King's Quest game at some point before Telltale Games acquired the rights. This information was released to the public through documents on the Silicon Knights suit against Epic Games.[13]

On February 17, 2011, Telltale Games announced that they reached an agreement with Activision to create new episodic games based on Sierra franchises.[14] The first Sierra intellectual property they intended to work on was King’s Quest.[15] The game was to follow the format of previous Telltale Games series such as Tales of Monkey Island, as a continuation of the series with all new episodic games and multiple series.[16][17] It was intended to preserve the back story of King's Quest, and fit into the established canon. It was intended to include the challenge and possibilities of death of the original games, but the gameplay was going to be adapted to relieve some of the frustration present in the original games.[17] Telltale approached Roberta Williams, the originator of the series, and one of the designers on all of the original games, to see if she was interested in working on the new one. While she declined by saying she had retired from games, she did offer the development team advice, which was "very valuable," according to developer Dave Grossman.[18][19] In May 2012, Dan Connors confirmed that Dave Grossman was in charge of the King's Quest project, and Telltale was working on how to proceed.[20] Then, on April 3, 2013, it was announced that Telltale's King's Quest game was cancelled. Activision had recovered the rights to King's Quest, and had their own plans for the franchise.[21]

In August 2014, Activision announced that they had revived the Sierra brand, and had passed development responsibilities for a King's Quest: Mask of Eternity sequel over to The Odd Gentlemen.[22] The game will feature vocal performances by actors such as Christopher Lloyd, Wallace Shawn, Tom Kenny, Josh Keaton, Maggie Elizabeth Jones, and Zelda Williams.[23][24]

It has been stated, if the first series with Graham does well, that future King's Quest series (similar to 'seasons') by The Odd Gentlemen might follow other members of the Royal Family (but less likely to follow Connor, though he may appear in a cameo role, as King's Quest VIII is considered 'canon').[2]


While the game is mostly concerned with new stories, the game will re-imagine certain events, elements and backstories from previous games. Matt Korba, one of the developers describes it as similar to how different authors might retell the stories comic book heroes or the Wizard of Oz to a new audience (by telling the stories in a different way).[25]

In the prologue of the first episode for example, the game re-imagines the sequence from King's Quest I, when Graham entered Daventry's well, the encounter with the dragon, and Graham obtaining the magic mirror. In addition the dragon's backstory has been changed Graham had previous visited the well in times past, and involved with putting the Dragon's eye out some years before. Thus rather than discovering the Dragon's Lair based on rough clues given to him by Edward about a Sorcerer, he returns to the scene of a previous events. Chapter 1 suggests that mirror was the first treasure stolen, many years after the Queen's death (originally the mirror had been stolen many years before the queen's death, and the second treasure stolen at the time of her death), and it was the mirror that was the main focus of his quest for the crown. Though Chapter 2 does imply that the other two treasures were stolen some time after CH1's knight tournament, and before the quest for the mirror, and that Graham recovered all the treasures during his quest. The mirror was but the last treasure he recovered (in the stories related to the original games, it was the first treasure he recovered, or second depending on the game, hintbook, or novelization).

The new game now gives Graham three options for defeating the dragon, each tied to the virtues of bravery/strength/deftness, wisdom/intelligence/logic, and compassion/mercy/kindness, which influences the dragon's later role in the stories (in future chapters). Such as shooting the dragon in the eye with a bow, releasing it from the chains keeping it in bondage, or simply distracting it but leaving it chained underground. In the original game Graham had the option of killing the dragon with a knife, or putting out its flames with a bucket of water (causing it to run out of the cave's back entrance), or sneaking by it with invisibility/fairy dust.[3] This time around Graham doesn't even take the bucket with him. Graham exits the well the same way he entered through the well, rather than taking the cave exit (exiting via the well meant less points in the original game). The game also adds a number of quicktime and rail-shooting events to the mix during some new scenes where Graham is chased by the dragon.

Some of Graham's backstory even differs from that given in Sierra's previous material (including Hoyle's Official Book of Games: Volume 1, the SCI remake of King's Quest 1: Quest for the Crown, The King's Quest VI Hint Book, and The King's Quest Companion), rather than having grown up in Daventry with his Grandfather, and his Father Hereward, and educated within Edward's educational institutions (Palace School, Royal University, Daventry High School[26]), in the new series, he is now an outsider that has recently come to Daventry, rather than a citizen of Daventry from birth. The main tale of Chapter I according to Graham, is from the time when Graham was but a lad, before he was a knight, and before he came to Daventry for the first time. He has only read about Daventry from travel guides he used to read as a child, and couldn't wait to see the famous landmarks for himself. The Merchant of Miracles surmises he is from a land whose name is hard to pronounce.

The Kingdom of Daventry itself is reimagined as a bustling walled city surrounding a huge fairy-tale inspired Castle Daventry on a hill, where as in the original game Castle Daventry was a lonely keep, surrounded by mostly wilderness. In CH2, the throne room and the castle halls are highly inspired by the throne room (seen throughout the classic games), and the hallways seen in KQ1 and KQ3, as a nice nod to the classic series.

So far, almost no characters from the previous series appears in the game, though in CH2. there is a nod to Rumplestiltskin's impossible riddles, and now dead Rumplestiltskin can be discovered in a hidden prison cell (though Rumplestiltskin should be alive the time of KQ3, and appears again in KQ5), perhaps suggesting that they don't appear in the reimagined universe's versions of those games events.

It appears that classic games as well as The King's Quest Companion are all fair game for references and reimagined events as such places from the expanded universe such as the continent of Tanalore or the Great Mountains of Daventry (which originated from the King's Quest Companion) are mentioned.,[27] but so are random references to places like Eldritch (from King's Quest 7), and ice orcs (from KQ8), and even the spells from KQ3. But most of these references are fairly random, out of context name drops intended for old fans of the series.

Script comparison[edit]

It has been stated that the game was split into separate chapters, because the game would be too long to release all at once.[28] The Script for the first chapter alone is 640 pages long. This apparently allows for multiple branching paths, the Easter eggs, the narration, trying to use or combine the wrong objects, and dialogue trees.[25] In comparison, King's Quest I (AGI) has about 58 pages of script, King's Quest SCI has about 95 pages of script, King's Quest 2 has about 49 pages of script, King's Quest 3 has about 85 pages of script, King's Quest 4 has about 106-108 pages of script (depending on the AGI or SCI versions), KQ5 has about 80 pages of script, KQ6 has about 285 pages of script, KQ7 has about 105 pages of script, and KQ8 has about 75 pages of script.[citation needed]

Some of the previews suggest that each chapter may be the size of a full length game (perhaps when puzzles are figured in the size of an early King's Quest game). The developers have said they split the game into multiple parts because it would be much too large for a single game. The first chapter of the new series is 5–10 hours long (approximately 3x that, if replayed on each of the three alternate paths, and to find al the alternate puzzle solutions), and has about as many puzzles as the first five games in original series (including about 50 items to collect and use), and a stand-alone story with a clear conclusion (but foreshadows future events).[citation needed] Each chapter is longer and more involved than a regular episodic series such as those made by Telltale.[29]


Aggregate review scores
Game Metacritic
Chapter I: A Knight to Remember (PC) 82/100[30]
(XONE) 80/100[31]
(PS4) 77/100[32]
Chapter II: Rubble Without a Cause (XONE) 78/100[33]
(PS4) 67/100[34]

Chapter I: A Knight to Remember[edit]

Chapter I: A Knight to Remember received positive reviews. Aggregating review website Metacritic gave the Microsoft Windows version 82/100 based on 22 reviews,[30] the Xbox One version 80/100 based on 26 reviews[31] and the PlayStation 4 version 77/100 based on 20 reviews.[32]

Chapter II: Rubble Without a Cause[edit]

Chapter II: Rubble Without a Cause received mixed reviews. Aggregating review website Metacritic gave the Xbox One version 78/100 based on 5 reviews[33] and the PlayStation 4 version 67/100 based on 10 reviews.[34]


  1. ^ a b c d Porter, Matt (June 30, 2015). "King's Quest: A Knight to Remember Release Date Announced". IGN. Retrieved June 30, 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c Futter, Mike (August 16, 2014). "[Update] Sierra's New King's Quest Won't Be Point-And-Click, Will Be Adventure". Game Informer. Retrieved August 16, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Juba, Joe (March 6, 2015). "Passing The Hat: An In-Depth Look At The New King's Quest". Game Informer. Retrieved March 6, 2015. 
  4. ^ Morganti, Emily (March 13, 2015). "King's Quest preview". Adventure Gamers. Retrieved March 13, 2015. 
  5. ^ King's Quest Steam Page: "Future chapters can be downloaded from in-game upon individual release throughout 2015 and 2016."
  6. ^ a b c Todd, Brett (July 28, 2015). "King's Quest Chapter 1: A Knight to Remember Review". Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  7. ^ Sarkar, Samit; McElroy, Justin (July 28, 2015). "King's Quest: 'A Knight to Remember' Review: My Kingdom for a Horse". Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  8. ^ Carter, Chris (July 28, 2015). "Review: King's Quest: A Knight To Remember". Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  9. ^ Engen, Josh (August 28, 2015). "King’s Quest: Rubble Without a Cause Will Arrive This Fall". Activision. Retrieved August 29, 2015. 
  10. ^ "King's Quest: Mask of Eternity". Prima's Official Strategy Guide. p. VIII. 
  11. ^ "Mask of Eternity Talkspot Interview, part 1". Archived from the original on March 31, 2012. 
  12. ^ Justin McElroy. "Royal with cheese: A King's Quest primer". Polygon. 
  13. ^ "Epic Wins Advantage in Too Human Lawsuit". Escapist Magazine. December 27, 2011. Retrieved December 31, 2011. 
  14. ^ "King's Quest 9 in development at Telltale Games as a new reboot". Video Games Blogger. February 2, 2011. Retrieved April 4, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Report of the Telltale 2011 press event". Adventure Gamers. Retrieved February 18, 2011. 
  16. ^ "King's Quest reboot coming courtesy of Telltale - Joystiq". February 2, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2012. 
  17. ^ a b "Telltale Games - Dave Grossman and Dave Felton". March 14, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2012. 
  18. ^ "E3 2011: First King's Quest Details - IGN". June 8, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2012. 
  19. ^ "E3: Roberta Williams advised Telltale on King's Quest". Destructoid. June 9, 2011. Retrieved February 6, 2013. 
  20. ^ "How Telltale Wants To Evolve The Adventure Game Genre". Siliconera. May 16, 2012. Retrieved May 16, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Activision is planning something for King's Quest After Recovering the Rights From Telltale Games". Digital Trends. April 3, 2013. Retrieved April 3, 2013. 
  22. ^ "Sierra And King's Quest Are Coming Back From The Dead". The International House of Mojo. August 12, 2014. Retrieved August 17, 2014. 
  23. ^ Makuch, Eddie (May 11, 2015). "King's Quest Revival Has a Seriously Impressive Voice Cast". GameSpot. Retrieved May 12, 2015. 
  24. ^ Lemne, Bengt (May 11, 2015). "Behind the scenes with King's Quest voice cast". Gamereactor. Retrieved May 12, 2015. 
  25. ^ a b Hryb, Larry (July 25, 2015). "MNR 549 Gamescom and King's Quest Interview". Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  26. ^ KQ1 SCI
  27. ^ Ch1 (Muriel and Chester idle conversations), Ch2 Rubble Without A Cause (Muriel and Chester idle conversations)
  28. ^ Calandra, Nick (June 17, 2015). "King's Quest - Recapturing the Magic and Charm of the Original Game Interview". Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  29. ^ Samit Sarkar. "King's Quest finally gets second chapter in mid-December, here's why it took so long". Polygon. 
  30. ^ a b "King's Quest Chapter 1: A Knight to Remember Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  31. ^ a b "King's Quest Chapter 1: A Knight to Remember Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  32. ^ a b "King's Quest Chapter 1: A Knight to Remember Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  33. ^ a b "King's Quest Chapter 2: Rubble Without a Cause Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved December 15, 2015. 
  34. ^ a b "King's Quest Chapter 2: Rubble Without a Cause Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved December 15, 2015. 

External links[edit]