The series takes place in Earth's pastEdit
According to the games, manuals, designer comments, etc, Daventry is set on Earth in the distant past. Many of the manuals, and references within the games, pointed out that the kingdom of Daventry existed during a legendary time, a long time ago, when magic and mystical creatures still roamed the earth. It is surmised the reason why many of the earth's legendary creatures, historical and mythic characters are referenced in earth literature is because they once existed in the world. Even in material related to KQ8, the game is said to be set a long time ago, and the Gnomes refer to the world as earth.
"A long, long time ago, when unicorns still roamed the forests and the merfolk still dwelt in the shallow waters frequented by men, there ruled in the kingdom of Daventry..."-KQ1 manual.
You fall toward a distant earth.-KQ1AGI
Woodcutters give ...their last earthly possession..."-KQ1AGI
"I'm afraid my time on Earth grows short."-Edward, KQ1SCI
"A long, long time ago, when creatures of myth and magic walked the earth openly with lesser mortals, there dwelt in the kingdom of Daventry..."-KQ2 Manual
"A long, long time ago, when magic was the only science known to man...learned in all matters of the heavens and earth. "-KQ3 manual.
"A long time ago, in a kingdom called Daventry, there lived a King named Edward."- KQ Collection 2 manual (KQ4 chapter)
"Once, in a kingdom called Daventry...According to legend, shortly after Rosella's rescue King Graham decided it was time to pass on his adventurer's cap..."-KQ4 Manual
"Long ago, in the kingdom of Daventry..."-KQ5 Manual
"A long time ago, there was a peaceful and prosperous kingdom called Daventry."-King's Quest collection manual (KQ5 section).
"A long time ago in the castle of a kingdom called Daventry..."-KQ6 intro.
"Long ago, in the kingdom of Daventry..."-KQ6 ("About King's Quest I-V")
"...face of the Earth...Mother Earth...anywhere on earth"-Guidebook to the Land of the Green Isles.
"In a time long ago, magic and myth is embodied in every living creature roaming the world. Unicorns graze in forest meadows, wizards concoct mystical spells and kings and queens manage thriving kingdoms."-KQ8 demo/website description
"...the place where the earth meets the sun."-Manual, KQ8.
"I can shift the earth's magnetic pole just a tad..."-Gnomic Terramancer, KQ8.
"Once Upon a Time in a Land Faraway..."-Roberta Williams
"The chronicles of Daventry are retold, these centuries later, as the tales of King's Quest."-Roberta Williams
"Well, ya, King's Quest is on earth. Daventry is very old city from a long time ago. It's in ruins now and people aren't quite sure exactly where it used to be. There are some archaeologists searching through the ruins, they think they know its Daventry. But its somewhere on Earth."-Roberta Williams, Mask of Eternity Talkspot Interview, 1998, part 1 (1:20:40 to 1:59:58)
"...no power on earth..."-Kingdom of Sorrow, pg 60
"...right down to the center of the earth."-See No Weevil, pg 103
The series takes place in a parallel universeEdit
In contrast, Peter Spear, et al, the authors of the King's Quest Companion, insisted that Daventry is located in a parallel universe that exists beyond our senses. They did not have a name for the world, but in time began to call it the "World of Daventry". The citizens of Daventry had withdrawn from Earth (which they call the Other World) and still communicate with us from there. The events of Daventry appeared to more or less occur simultaneously with last part of 20th century's earth history between the early 1980 to late 1990's with events in Daventry representing a time of 20-25 years passing (although apparently both worlds exist at slightly different rates of time). The messages would be sent to our world soon after occurring in their world. Peter Spear never gave any specific dates as to when people withdrew, or when the events in the stories took place. In the official timeline the date of the first withdrawal had to have occurred over 10,000 years before Graham's Coronation if not more.
Both Theories are True Edit
The only possible scenario that would allow both to be true is if the people of Daventry withdrew from historical earth into earth's ancient past. Their universe would be the same earth, but in the past. In this scenario time is parallel allowing communication between people from the past and future. This would also explain why the planet is called earth. Such as the manuals, gnomes and even the occasional human referring to the world as earth.
The idea of kind of time travel in which the traveler is actually passing to a parallel universe is a similar idea given in the novel, Michael Crichton's Timeline. He stated that in the quantum mechanics of time travel, travelers don't actually travel back in time but rather they slide over into a parallel dimension... As described in the book it is similar to how every loop on a coil of a spring is parallel to every other loop on the coil but still connected to each other from one end to the other. So the term time travel is a misnomer as the person isn't actually traveling back in time but rather crosses over to time that is parallel to other points in time. Even though the time traveler exists in a parallel dimension one can still partially influence the future by the actions committed in the past because time moves forward it will eventually catch up with his original dimension as the coil of time winds up to his original point in time.
Derek even suggests that the 'contemporary time' in Daventry, and time on earth are at different times. This may support the idea that some kind of time travel exists between both worlds.
There are additional interpretations of Daventry in the form of easter eggs in other Sierra game franchises;
- In Hoyle, Book of Games Volume I, the game suggests that the world of King's Quest exists, in a sense 'parallel', to the worlds of many of the other Sierra games.Each of those games exist at different points in the Sierra timeline (Space Quest is in the "future", King's Quest in the medieval past, Colonel's Bequest in 1925, Police Quest in the present, etc).
- Rosella: "Tis strange indeed, Sir Roger, that you are trapped in this game! I myself am finding this to be a delightful break from King's Quest."
- Colonel Dijon:"Girl, don't you know this is 1925, not the Middle Ages?"-Hoyle Volume I
- It is also suggested Hoyle I that the designers of Sierra are essentially the great implementers of the Sierra universe, and are able to manipulate the individuals from each of the games series from both time and space. One such programmer, Warren is the one behind bringing all the individuals together into his "game" parlor (via Ken Williams' suggestion), and believes they are all creations in the machine. Most of the characters are skeptical of this detail, believing they are "real". Sonny Bonds believes he came to the game on his own, during his off-duty hours. Roger Wilco believes he was 'kidnapped', and as for Rosella and Graham, they were brought from their home kingdom, but don't mind the fact.
- In the Laura Bow universe, Daventry was a kingdom that existed long ago. As stated in Hoyle I, the Middle Ages. The Leyendecker museum has a painting in its collection depicting King Graham suffering an eternity in Hell. They also were able to obtain the well preserved body of the dead King Edward of Daventry and a Unicorn.
- In Police Quest series Daventry is a contemporary kingdom on Earth. The Lytton Tribune was reporting the attacks on the kingdom by the 3-headed dragon, and later on Graham's heart attack. Sonny lives in California, the original location of the World-Famous Talking Bear.
- The Leshy of Mordavia shudders at the thought of Cedric the Owl.
- Larry Laffer encountered Rosella in Hoyle I, he also encountered an actress portraying Rosella at Sierra On-line studios, when he crossed the multiverse from his world to a parallel Earth.
- The hero of Gloriana once knew the fairy Genesta, and the fairy Erana reminded him of her. Rosella dolls are popular product in the world as well.
- A familiar looking owl, met his demise just outside the desert town of Coursegold, in the late 1800's.
- Graham is seen being carried by a Roc across the skies of the planet Estros.
- Graham is referenced twice in Freddy Pharkas, first as K. Graham of Daventry on a notice in the General Store, and second time as a story being told by Whittlin' Willy.
In the various editions of King's Quest Companion, Peter Spear argues that the letters he receives from Derek, represent the real universe of Daventry as opposed to the "programmed world", the "computer games". I.E. Roberta was inspired and wrote a work of fiction & series of games based on her dreams of the universe. The implications of this are that games such as the remake of King's Quest 1 and elements of King's Quest VII may not actually represent the "true" history of Daventry as told by Derek Karlavaegen, but are Roberta's personal interpretations, retellings, and modifications. For example the original KQ1 is considered closer to the "truth", the remake is treated to be Roberta's interactive "fiction" inspired by the "true events". In addition KQ7 may not be a "true story" at all, although it might have become truth due to Roberta's influence on the world through her dreams. Thus the 'truth' might be that Daventry maybe in a parallel world, but Roberta interpreted it to be part of our world as part of her 'creative design' choice in telling the story rather than being the "real" story (as given to Peter Spear). In this sense the games are simply games in our world written by various designers, putting in their own interpretations, rather than being authentic primary sources. Similar to how a movie director may change the events of a story for dramatic effect.
Though it is said over time Roberta gained some kind of power to reshape Daventry as her dreams became stronger (and thus KQ7 could represent her changing Daventry's reality).
Some fans have interpreted 'long ago' as not referring to Earth, but rather, 'long ago in Daventry'. In the sense that the events of the games concern the past of the world of Daventry being told from some distant "present" on the world or in a sense "future" beyond the events of the games. In this theory, the dialogue from manuals, and KQ6 intro came from historians in Daventry's present/future when technology had taken over, and magic no longer exists.
However from Companion's perspective the "present" goes as far as the events of King's Quest 7 (occurring parallel to Earth's "present", c. 1980's to 1998) rather than some future point. Also, some view the references to 'earth' in dialogues and text, as a 'translation' which means generally the World (of Daventry), without referring to our planet.
On the other hand none of these explanations truly incorporates Connor's reference to the planet Jupiter, or the Jupiter Parchment's reference to the constellation Leo, and their connection to the Celestial Globe, which is intended to represent the stars and planets seen by the people of Daventry in the night skies.
Behind the scenes Edit
Peter Spear and the game designers gave competing ideas throughout the production of the series (up to King's Quest: Mask of Eternity and King's Quest bundle collections) and the the last edition of the King's Quest Companion (up to KQ7). One interesting thing of note is that some of the material in the Companion was created from notes & design documents from the developers.
Game documentation and the games were influenced by many of the game's developers. Roberta apparently wrote the second version of King's Quest I manual. She also worked with Mark Seibert and Cheryl Sweeney on the KQ8 manual. Annette Childs wrote the stories in the manual for King's Quest II and III. Jerry Albright wrote the manual for KQIV. Bridget McKenna wrote the manual for KQV. Josh Mandel wrote the script for King's Quest I remake. Jane Jensen wrote most of the material for KQ6 in-game dialogue and the manual, Lorelei Shannon apparently wrote most of the material for KQ7. Roberta wrote the dialogue and script for Mask of Eternity.
Roberta Williams herself stated the view that Daventry was on earth (see quotes above). But she at least acknowledged the King's Quest Companion books; "The King's Quest Companion is an interesting blend of fiction and helpful information for playing my games. Anyone interested in reading the story behind King's Quest or who just needs to be "unstuck" while playing the game will find this book invaluable.", "...a wonderful blend of fact and fiction that brings my games to life in an exciting new way. It adds another fascinating dimension to the entire King's Quest experience. It truly is a pleasure to read and a must have for anyone hoping to explore the series in greater depth and detail."
Mask of Eternity's material never comments on when it specifically takes place in relation to other games in the series, but references to "long, time ago" exist in the some of the related material (the now defunct website), and references to earth exist in the Realm of the Gnomes, and the manual. There are also reference to the planet Jupiter and the constellation Leo as part of Daventry's celestial sky.