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Kings Quest 2.1985

King's Quest II: Romancing the throne was the sequel to the classic best selling game King's Quest I. It used the same AGI engine as King's Quest I. For the official novelization of the game see, Romancing the Throne: From the Chronicles of Daventry, Part II.

BackgroundEdit

Take a romantic and dangerous journey with King Graham as he searches for his true love. You'll need a keen eye, quick wit, and plenty of courage to fight the powers of evil and rescue the lovely Princess Valanice from captivity in the crystal tower. Find out if love really does conquer all! [1]

Once upon a time, in a far-away land called Daventry, there ruled a King named Graham. A hero whose brave deeds had won him the crown, Graham ruled with a kind but firm hand, and the people of Daventry prospered under his reign.

One day while contemplating the loneliness that had come to consume him, King Graham was distracted by a vision in the magic mirror which he often consulted. In it he beheld the most beautiful maiden he had ever seen. His heart felt as though it was ablaze. "Oh mirror wise," he inquired, "Where am I to find this fair maiden whom I vow to make my queen?"

"The maiden Valanise of the kingdom of Kolyma is known for her wisdom no less than her beauty. The jealous witch Hagatha holds her prisoner in a quartz tower guarded by a wild and ferocious beast."

"Where is this tower to be found?" inquired the king.

"Search Kolyma for the keys that will unlock the three doors to an enchanted land," the mirror replied.

King Graham queried as to the whereabouts of the keys, but no more clues were forthcoming. Undaunted, he shouldered his provisions and set out on the long journey to Kolyma.

Go with King Graham, in search of the magic keys that will lead him to the fair maiden for whom he longs. Explore underground caverns, eerie towers, and ocean wonderlands.

Faced with challenges that would intimidate those of lesser timber, you must summon all the strength and courage you can muster. Your perseverance shall be rewarded handsomely.

Battle beings at whose very sight mere mortals cringe. Fear not, though. Remember, all that is right and good shall overcome. Besides, true love conquers all.

You will encounter characters both mythical and magical - out of legend, folklore, and fantasy. Be wise in our judgement of them, for not all will share the values which are important to you.[2]

The saga of Graham, now King of the Land of Daventry. His quest to rescue a princess locked away in a tower that is both miles and dimensions away. The adventure begins on a deserted beach, and will take the player to undersea worlds and into a vampire's castle. The answer to Graham's challenge lies behind a magic door and its three keys which unlock untold secrets.[3]

Journey with King Graham, Inheritor of the Daventry throne. Help him unlock the secrets that may lead him to the enchanted maiden whom he longs.[4]

Behind the scenesEdit

The official hintbook for King's Quest II was written by Al Lowe of Leisure Suit Larry fame.

DevelopmentEdit

See Romancing the Throne Development.

ReceptionEdit

"...As a story, it's the best...an enchanting game..."-Scott Mace, Insider Magazine

"It's like playing an animated cartoon"-Computer! magazine, "If you liked King's Quest, you'll love the sequel"-Consumer Software News, "Roberta Williams has simply outdone herself"-Computer Entertainment, King's Quest II has the "the most lushly painted and highly detailed scenery seen since...well, King's Quest I."-Questbusters journal. "The interactive story is presented in full color, animated, three-dimensional graphics and scored with multipart music and sound effects. King's Quest attempts to merge the best aspects of text adventures with graphics of arcade games. The animated graphics are simply the best we have ever seen on a home computer."-Computer Gaming World, June 1985.

"I used to be a member of the I-Hate-Adventure-Games Club until I met King's Quest II, Romancing the Throne. This program is a breakthrough in game adventures. I say "game adventures" instead of adventure games because King's Quest II is mostly animation with a little typing thrown in. The first thing I said when I saw this game was ..WOW.. And I didn't stop being amazed. You never know what you might encounter just around the next bend. It might be a beautiful beach or it might be an enemy stalking you... Move King Graham to any edge of the screen and, seconds later, the next picture screen loads in. I still can't get over the graphics. The trees, buildings, lakes and ocean are all dimensionally correct. In other words, you can walk into a tree head-on, or from the sides, the back, or just walk around it. If you see a tree with a long branch that extends off onto the right side of the monitor, you will see the rest of the branch when you get to the next screen. Each screen is colorful and detailed with a good feeling of atmosphere. I thought there could be only a few screens on one 3 1/2-inch disk, but was I wrong! I counted at least 35 screens on the first disk alone. And there are two disks to the game. As you travel about this strange land you may encounter other animated characters --each with his, her, or its own personality. You might recognize some of the characters from fairy tales and legends. And you will soon find out if they are there to help or hinder you...The story itself is very well laid out. It's obvious that a lot of thought was given to how the screens would fit together and how the characters would interact. The characters you will meet are delightful. Each one has a different facial expression and can move about as freely as you. And you will find yourself freely running from a few of them...If all adventures could be this enjoyable and visually stimulating, I would have been an adventure game freak long ago. I found myself up until the wee morning hours, with just the monitor lighting, the room, laughing and smiling at a new sequence I had discovered. Then I realized I was afraid I would complete my quest, and I didn't want it to end." -Brad Kershaw, ANTIC, MAY 1986

"I first experienced computer gaming through her early work...so I sort of grew up on her style of adventure game design. She has a clean and crisp style of design that states the goals of the game clearly and makes your challenges clear, which I find refreshing...I really do think "King's Quest I" was the finest adventure game ever written, and the most fun to play...I also liked "King's Quest II" a lot. I think both of these games are great examples of the kind of adventure games that I like to play and that started the whole adventure game following in the first place. "King's Quest I" and "King's Quest II" are unlike most computer games written nowadays. Frankly, they don't feature the deep, complex plots of games like "Police Quest III" and "Conquests of the Longbow". Instead, these games are basically treasure hunts with lots of fun puzzles thrown in to add challenge. They feature simple goals -- you know what it takes to win the contest with the computer. For me, adventure games have represented a pleasant diversion -- something I could boot up and get lost in for a few hours at the end of a long day. I view them the same way some people review Rubik's Cube or a crossword puzzle. I want simple goals -- something I can jump into the middle of and go...I want hard puzzles -- real mind benders -- so that when I solve one I can sit smugly... with a sense of satisfaction. This straight forward "goals and puzzles" approach to adventuring represents the oldest and purest approach to the art form. Everyone at Sierra has their opinion about how adventure games should work, of course, but as for me, give me the old-time adventuring. Give me the early "King's Quests."-John Williams, Interaction Magazine, Spring 1992.

Re-releases and RemakesEdit

It was first released in 1985 as a disk that booted on start-up the game has an interface similar to King's Quest (PCjr). There are no textboxes for the narration and it just scrolls along the bottom of the screen. The text is in white rather than grey as in original King's Quest I. There is no music in the initial title screen and it does not play until the intro cutscene in the throne room begins. The score system is accessed through the tab and is a total out of a possible number. It appears on a  black screen that also lists the inventory. There are no menus as in later releases. Looking at items brings up a close up picture just above the text box on the bottom).

The game was re-released in 1987 with EGA support to run under DOS. This is why most remaining copies bear a 1987 rather than a 1985 copyright date. The re-release plays "Greensleeves" from the title screen. The rerelease made several changes including textboxes and pull down menus.

The Apple II version has improved sound over the PC version, but mainly based on the the other 1987 versions.

Due to rather disappointing sales of the 1990 remake of King's Quest I, the prospect of officially remaking and re-releasing King's Quest II was scrapped.

King's Quest 2 (unofficial fan game)Edit

In 2002, KQ2 inspired AGD Interactive, then known as Tierra Entertainment, to release a fan-made adaptation, a retelling and remix of King's Quest II, see King's Quest II: Romancing the Stones, which changed much of the characters and story.

Easter EggsEdit

  • On the cliffs after the snake, there is a boulder with a little hole in it. Type LOOK IN HOLE while standing in front of it, you will see a preview demo of Sierra's Space Quest 1! In the Apple II version you will see a preview for King's Quest III in the same hole. There is no hole in rock in the 1985 releases.
  • Behind a tree is a note discussing King's Quest III and Space Quest I. In the 1985 release (1.1H) it advertised the Black Cauldron. There is no note in the earliest release (1.0W).
  • Typing in "What is Graham's name?" or "What is Graham's last name?" will give the answer "cracker". Beginning the running joke that Graham's full name is Graham Cracker. Technically, the important word in the parser is 'name' and thus any combination of questions ending with 'name' will work, such as "What is Graham's first name" (but the KQ2 hintbook confirms the intent is for it to be his last name).
  • Attempting to talk to the Magic Seahorse, brings up a special message.
  • Using Abracadabra or Sesame on the clam in Neptune's Kingdom will give a special message.
  • Strangely in KQ2 the parser responds to calling any female characters by derogatory terms (see KQ2 transcript, the nouns used will lead to the standard character descriptions. Shades of Leisure Suit Larry? Strangely one can also use any of the female character names such as Valanice, Red Riding Hood, Witch, Grandma, Hagatha, etc, in order to look at any other female characters.[5] It is said that Scott Murphy was behind the more colorful Easter eggs.
  • Message 3 in msg.90 folder has a hidden description for Valanice from the narrator: "She is even more lovely than she appeared in the mirror. Her long auburn hair tumbles down to cover her large firm breasts. Her erect nipples are one of the indications that her warm thighs would welcome your tender kisses."

NotesEdit

  • Graham must deal with the snake using the golden bridle, a seemingly illogical puzzle. If he kills the snake, it will also solve the problem, but with fewer points. The Official Book of King's Quest points out; If you know mythology, you'll probably know what to do with the snake and a bridle... It further explains, that the reader might ask what kind of nonsense is this (thinking it odd); however, readers of Greek mythology would know that a winged horse, named Pegasus, sprang fully grown from the head of Medusa (a babe with snakes for hair) when she was slain. So there is a link between winged horses and snakes. The King's Quest Companion, 2nd Edition gives two explanations that "Graham 'accidentally' threw the bridle" while trying to use his sword (this a joke back at a similar situation in the KQ1 novel where he accidentally throws a bucket of water at a dragon, when attempting to use a knife), but it also gives the reader knowledge of both solutions to the puzzle. The second explanation discusses the history and inspiration behind the puzzle Pegasus was born from Medusa, and Bellerophon was given a magic bridle by Athena in order to ride Pegasus. However, a more direct influence to the idea of throwing magic bridle sonto enchanted creatures comes from the Romanian fairy tale (which appears in Andrew Lang's Violet Fairy book from Andrew Lang's Fairy Books, which he calls The Fairy of the Dawn, also known as The Fairy Aurora[6]), the Hero Petru is tasked with throwing a bridle over the head of several "Welwa" (a monsterous beast depending on the source, which is either similar to the ugly beast that becomes a unicorn seen in KQ8, or a giant worm/snake, of some sort, each Welwa in the book has a different form, from the first being a goblin, to second being more of a chilmaera, fog, twisted backwards creature, and other forms). When he throws the bridle over each of the beasts head, each creature turns into a beautiful horse.


  • Graham must cross the bridge only a certain number of times during the game, after which the bridge will collapse. This is not explained during the game, and the player receives a point each time, possibly confusing the player into thinking that all the points can be garnered by simply crossing the bridge again and again. This flaw was alluded to in King's Quest VI.

ReferencesEdit

  1. InterAction, spring 1992
  2. Inside Flap KQ2 gold box
  3. KQ2 gold box back
  4. KQ2 silver box back
  5. http://www.oocities.org/petter_holmberg/kq2fun.html
  6. http://fairytalesandfolklore.com/tale.php?tale=247

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