Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Game 42: King's Quest Remake - Won!

King Graham Journal Entry 3: "It saddens me to say that King Edward passed away today. After feeling such joy at having recovered the mirror (from a dragon), the chest (from a giant) and the shield (from the Leprechaun King), I returned to the castle to witness the King's final breath. At least he knew that the future of Daventry was assured as his crown was passed to me. I will do all I can to carry on his fine legacy!"

Haha! I have the chest! Ain't nobody gonna take it from me!

Well that’s that! Things wrap up pretty quickly in King’s Quest once the initial exploration phase is out of the way. At least it does when you know what to do. I did have a couple of hiccups on the way though, which shall be revealed soon enough. Right, so my last session finished with me having claimed the magic chest from the giant in the Land of the Clouds. I left his realm through a tunnel with a spiralling bridge leading down to the ground.  By now I knew that traversing branches, bridges and the like would be achieved far easier using the mouse than the keys, so I only fell once. However, the trip was not without drama! As I turned a corner I was confronted by the thieving dwarf that I’d seen earlier outside. “The sneaky little dwarf caught you by surprise. Did he steal anything from you?” I noticed that my score decreased by 8 points, which could only mean one thing. The bastard had stolen my magic chest! Checking my inventory proved this belief to be true, so I restored my game to see whether this event was scripted or random. It occurred again on the second attempt, and on the third, and then on the fourth! I couldn’t recall a similar event happening on the stairs leading down from the clouds in the original. What was I to make of this?

A winding path replaces the steep staircase of the original.

I literally had no way of avoiding him once he appeared!

I did recall having to get some items back from a thieving character in King’s Quest, but my memory was telling me that occurred in one of the sequels (King’s Quest III?). Maybe this was a whole new feature in the remake and I would be given the opportunity to reclaim my prize soon enough? I decided to continue down the pathway to see whether that chance would ever eventuate. At the bottom of the path I found a door, which of course turned out to be the one I’d seen built into the mountainside earlier on. I pondered what to do next, and got caught up on the fact I’d not found the dagger during my exploration. I needed the dagger to cut the rope at the bottom of the well, and I’d been quite certain that I’d find it hidden in a stump or under a rock or something like that. Hmmm…there’d been a large rock on the very first wilderness screen I’d visited, but examining it hadn’t revealed anything of interest. I made my way back there and had another go. I eventually tried “move rock”, only to watch as Sir Graham pulled the thing on top of himself and died! Restoring, I tried moving it from the other side, and this time successfully revealed a hole containing the dagger (2 points). I picked it up (5 points), then rather than heading straight for the well, took a detour to the woodcutter’s cottage.

It was anticlimactic to walk out of here without the chest.

Well how was I supposed to know it would move this way!?

This is another one of those puzzles that I found incredibly difficult when I was younger, but given I now know the solution, it’s hard to know how hard it would be for first time players of the remake. The key to feeding the family and therefore getting the fiddle is the bowl. Just giving the woodcutter an empty bowl wouldn’t achieve much though, so it needs to be filled with something. In the original the player could see the word FILL on the inside of the bowl if they typed “look in bowl”, but that didn’t automatically equate to typing “fill bowl” to all players (myself included). In the remake I could see the word FILL by selecting the bowl in my inventory, but that wouldn’t make the solution any clearer. Regardless, I filled the bowl with stew and gave it to the woodcutter. (3 points) “Thank you, thank you, Sir Knight! We shall never forget your kindness and generosity. Please take my fiddle as a small token of our thanks.” I took the fiddle from the table (3 points) and left to go pay the dragon a visit. I had the dagger this time, so was able to remove the bucket from the rope after descending into the well. (2 points) I filled the bucket with water before hopping out of the water (2 points), and then confronted the dragon prepared. (1 point)

Don't mind if I do!

Yes, I imagine filling a bucket with water while being submerged in water must be quite challenging.

I took a few steps towards it and then typed “throw water at dragon”. (5 points) Sir Graham did as I requested, with the end result being a fire breathing dragon that no longer had the ability to breathe fire. It stormed off with its tail between its legs, leaving me to collect the magic mirror! (8 points) I left the dragon’s lair (2 points), trying to remember where in Daventry the magic shield would be found. I still hadn’t visited the leprechaun’s hideout, but since I hadn’t figured out how to get the mushroom yet, couldn’t make myself small enough to enter it (or exit it as it might be). I was also starting to think that I somehow was supposed to avoid the thieving dwarf that stole the magic chest as soon as I’d found it. I was more certain than ever that the dwarf hadn’t taken it from me in the original, and hated to think that I’d get all the way to the end only to have to restore all the way back. I decided to restore now, and have a shot and leaving the Land of the Clouds while keeping the chest in my possession. I restored back to just after knocking the giant down, collected the chest, and then made my way down the spiralling path. Despite having attempted it numerous times prior without success, this time the dwarf just didn’t appear!!! I was both thrilled to get back to ground level with the chest and annoyed that the game had thrown such a random, game ending event at me!

Go on, tell me you weren't curious to find out what would happen!

The last adventurer had clearly been eating onions or beans!

No really, it was nothing. Just doing my job!

I replayed everything that I’d done since leaving through the door in the mountain, ending up with 118 points and two of the three treasures I needed. Now all I needed to do was figure out how to get to the mushroom. I was quite sure that a bird had taken me to the other side of the river in the original, but I hadn’t seen one on any of the screens throughout this play through (at least not one big enough to carry me). I zigzagged my way across the map, hoping that I’d stumble across what I needed, only to find the huge eagle on the very screen that I’d begun my search on. I thought they might have removed some of the randomness of events in the remake, but clearly they didn’t. While walking through the screen with the cave entrance on it, the bird flew back and forth across the screen. Typing “jump” at the right time resulted in Graham holding onto its feet and being carried off into the sky (3 points)! It flew across a couple of screens and then dropped me next to a large hole in the ground. I’d not seen the screen before, so figured it was the last remaining unmapped section of Daventry. That would mean that the mushroom was to the west, so I took a look before considering entering the hole. Thankfully I was right, and I soon had that pesky mushroom in my inventory (1 point).

As you do!

The effects of gravity appear to be inconsistent in Daventry.

Is this the third treasure? The Magic Mushroom? One can only hope!

The end couldn’t be far away, so I headed back to the large hole and purposely fell in. I found myself in a dark cave, with a tunnel leading off to the south. I followed it around to the west until I was confronted by a gigantic rat! I’d forgotten all about this bit, but immediately knew that the Swiss cheese was the answer. I offered it to the rat: “Cheese? Well, yeah, now that you mention it, I guess I am kinda hungry...” (2 points) Strangely, once it had gobbled it up, the rat simply vanished in a flash of light! With the beastly thing out of the way, I was able to pass through the door that had been behind it. Once in the next room, two leprechauns rapidly approached me with spears. I was momentarily concerned for my safety, but as they got close to me, my clover came into effect. “With a genuine four-leaf clover in your possession, the leprechauns fear and respect you. Rather than risk offending you, they decide to leave you entirely alone.” Just as the rat had done, the leprechauns vanished in sparkling green light. I wandered through the cavern and into a large chamber. There I found a bunch of other leprechauns, and what appeared to be their king sitting on a throne with a sceptre. “The Leprechauns, sensing the power of your four-leaf clover, begin to vanish.” Huh? I remembered this scene being completely different in the original!

The life of an adventurer contains many painful faceplants!

Holy crap! That's one nasty looking rat!

Stab first, ask questions later.

Everything seems to just vanish in this game after serving its purpose!

At this point I was able to collect the shield and complete my set of treasures, but something didn’t feel right. I’d not used the fiddle in any way, and I distinctly recalled doing so in the original. I restored my game, and after passing the rat, played the fiddle as soon as the leprechauns appeared. “Wonderful job! Leprechauns find fiddle music irresistible. The moment they hear the music, they begin dancing a frenzied jig. Finally, swept away by the snappy music, the Leprechaun guards poof right out of the room.” (3 points) A similar thing occurred when I entered the chamber: “Overhearing the fiddle music you played in the hallway, the Leprechauns have begun to dance! As they do, they pop away in a fit of merrymaking.” Their jigs, tumbles and turns were all quite humorous, and once the majority had vanished from sight, the king jigged off the screen to the west! I immediately noticed that extra points were not the only thing I gained by playing the fiddle. The king’s sceptre remained on his throne, and certainly hadn’t been there after clearing the room with the clover. I picked up both the magic shield (8 points) and the sceptre (6 points), and then left the chamber with the intention of taking my treasure set to King Edward. Before I could do that though, I was going to have to escape the leprechauns' home through a tiny hole in the end of the tunnel. I typed “eat mushroom”, and walked through the hole once Sir Graham was temporarily shrunken to minuscule size (Alice in Wonderland style). (2 points)

Now that's more like it!

I don't suppose the sceptre serves any purpose beyond points does it?


As I returned to normal size (1 point), I was congratulated for having found all three treasures. “Now don’t waste any time; bring the treasures straight back to King Edward before it’s too late.” I travelled north to the castle gates, where Graham wondered why there were no longer any guards located there (3 points). Heading inside, I was shown a view of the courtyard, which was also completely deserted! “This is highly unusual. You begin to feel deeply disturbed, as if all is not right within the castle.” The reason for the desertion was soon obvious though, as I found everyone standing in front of King Edward’s throne. A doctor was informing the King that his time was just about up. As I entered the room, his attention was drawn to me and whether or not I’d succeeded at my task. I informed him that I had, and Graham placed each of the items next to the throne to be admired. King Edward tried to stand, but fell to the ground, his crown rolling across the floor. “I...I am afraid it is a little too late for me. But you have done superbly, my Knight. As I promised, the kingdom is yours. I know you will serve her well.” With this final message, the king died! The doctor placed the crown on my head, marking my new standing as King of Daventry! “And thus ended Sir Graham’s great quest for the lost treasures of Daventry. Despite the loss of their beloved King Edward, the people of Daventry grew happy and prosperous and flourished for years to come.” Final Rating post to come shortly...

Work opportunities really picked up after Helmut's breakout role.

Either that or everyone is awaiting my glorious arrival!

Game 42: Complete!

Session Time: 1 hour 00 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes


  1. You could've avoided the dwarf by climbing the beanstalk again, duh.

    There's at least three more ways to deal with the dragon:
    -hfr gur vaivfvovyvgl evat
    -unir gur snvel tenaqzbgure'f fcryy cebgrpg lbh
    -guebj gur qnttre ng vg

    You could've also dealt with the rat by tvivat uvz bar bs lbhe yrffre gernfherf (rtt, jnyahg, cbhpu).

    I just love when adventure games have lots of alternate solutions. It's so much more immersive. I also like a well-done parser, where the developers try to anticipate everyting you might do. To quote a NetHack phrase, the DevTeam thinks of everything.

    1. I did consider climbing back down the beanstalk, but couldn't accept that it was impossible to travel through the tunnels without being accosted.

      It is neat how many alternate solutions there are in the game. It does create some confusion, as certain items become completely useless, but that's a small price to pay.

      Is the invisibility ring useful in multiple places?

    2. Could you have worn the invisibility ring to avoid the dwarf? Not that it mattered in the end.

    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    4. Yes, the ring has multiple uses. You can use the ring to deal with both the dragon and the giant. Not sure about the dwarf or other random encounters.

      It's funny how the ring is rarely useful, most evil characters either still sense you or it conveniently stops working.

    5. I seem to remember watching my older brothers defeat the witch by fubivat ure vagb gur pnhyqeba. Perhaps that requires the ring of invisibility?

    6. Ab, lbh qba'g arrq abe rira pna hfr gur evat sbe gung.

      How to do it: Trg vagb ure ubhfr jura fur vfa'g gurer (xabpx ba gur qbbe; vs fur nafjref, yrnir gur fperra, er-ragre naq xabpx ntnva). Gura jnvg va ure orqebbz hagvy fur neevirf naq fgnaqf arkg gb gur pnhyqeba - gura farnx oruvaq ure na chfu ure vagb vg.

  2. I am pretty sure eagle is not random in the remake, but appears only after you've found the two other treasures. That's why you have to leave the shield as the last treasure, while in the original you could do them in any order.

    1. Relevant video I found:

    2. That's weird! It seems the developers planned to allow the player to collect the treasures in any order, but at some point pulled the plug on it.

    3. Could that possibly be because you can't actually use the shield to save yourself from the dragon (which feels a natural/obvious solution)? I'm not actually sure, as I've always gone for the mirror first.

    4. I guess getting the shield first would make the rest a bit easy?

      Of course the other reason might be that it's too easy to get dead-ended if you went there first, because of the items you require. (although that would be unlike Sierra!).

  3. Well done Trickster! The King again, for two games in a row.

    I guess that makes us your loyal subjects?

    1. No, I'd rather vote for Aperama who'd sooner put a headlock on the dragon than let it run away from him.

    2. Besides, I'm not sure Trickster always feel our loyalty and love when he reads our ROT13'ed conversations afterwards. :p (Looking at you, Kenny)

    3. Every king needs a jester to remind him of his mortality.

    4. @Lars-Erik: What ever do you mean? My word! I have always been unwavering in my disposition towards Trix!

  4. Job well done. I'm looking forward to joining you for Monkey Island, which I've never bothered to play.

  5. Adventure game news! Submachine: The Temple has been released.

  6. This New Adventure game post is dedicated to TBD, since I know he liked the first one in the series: Black Mirror 2 - Reigning Evil.

    ALSO:A new point and click game: Gray Matter, which has lovely, downright lovely, art. Also it is on sale.

    1. ;)

    2. Oh, and Black Mirror 3 was released as well, along with it being on sale:

    3. New release, Broken Age season pass 33% off on GoG for the next 48 hours: for those of you that didn't join in the Kickstarter.

    4. Damn. O checked twice for Black Mirror, but forgot to check the other one.

    5. Ah, Black Mirror three came out after I'd checked the list.

      However, there are two more releases:
      The Witch's Yarn: 20% off, came out today, has a graphics style I find painful


      Actual Sunlight, top down, pixel art game that is apprently a very depressing adventure game. It is also 10% off.

    6. Ah, a game release dedicated to me.

      I'll now forever be known as that bloke who liked The Black MIrror. :)

  7. And I was planning on playing along with this one too, now that I won a copy of the game (Thanks to Lars-Erik, Canageek and Ilmari)

    I've only just started the game and mapped half the world so I still won't be reading posts on this game until I've finished, which at the pace I'm going will probably be after Tricky finishes the next game :) Quite easy so far, apart from the stupid dwarf who's resulted in five reloads already.

    1. Is there really no way to get things back from the dwarf?

    2. No, there isn't. In a later game (KQ 2, I think) the dwarf had a house where he took the stolen belongings, but no such luck here.

  8. The death messages have so many puns... My favourite is "Well, well well! Water you going to do now?" :-P

  9. Broken Sword 5 50% off on Steam:
    Broken Sword 1-3 also 50% off on Steam: either as a pack or individually.

    1. A bit of extra info for those who are interested in the old versions.

      The Steam versions of 1 and 2 are the Director's Cut/Remastered versions.

      The GOG versions of Broken Sword 1 and 2 include both the remastered and the original versions of the games, but are not currently on sale.

      GOG also has Broken Sword 4 for those who want to complete the series.

    2. New adventure game sale: Oknytt, a decently pretty point and click

      Steam also just acquired a 1996 FMV adventure called Harvester. Not a new game, but a new steam release. Looking at the screenshots should explain my disdain of FMV games to everyone.

  10. I've recently learned of an old forgotten Disney film that appears to have inspired the Leprechaun scenes; this provides a source for the fiddle music, the 'chauns all leaving, and the hero escaping through a crack in the wall.