The Silver Lining is a free unofficial fan-made sequel series to King's Quest by Phoenix Online Studios. It is an episodic series of games inspired by the King's Quest IP. Four episodes have been released. A fifth episode was planned, but there has been no developer updates on the game for at least a year, since March 2013 (the companion work The Four Winds was last updated in August 2013.). It's current status is unknown (and may have been put on hold due to the developer's other "for pay" projects).
The company has changed its name to Phoenix Online Publishing on 19 May 2014 in order to respecialze for publishing of independent quest games, the company soon made a statement of releasing all rights to the game to Activision upon request.
Phoenix Online Studios had received a special fan license in November 2005 from Vivendi Universal (then owners of the Sierra brand and King's Quest IP), allowing them to make the game after being given a Cease and Desist by Vivendi that September. The game was however given a second Cease and Desist a year after Activision acquired Vivendi entertainment, in February 2010, but the team, through negotiations with Activision managed to secure a continuance of their fan license, which was announced on June 26th 2010.
- "Episode 1: What is Decreed Must Be" (July 10, 2010)
- "Episode 2: Two Households" (September 18, 2010)
- "Episode 3: My Only Love Sprung From My Only Hate" (February 17, 2011)
- "Episode 4: ‘Tis in My Memory Locked. And You Yourself Shall Hold The Key Of It" (November 6, 2011)
Note: this article concerns a project that may or may not be in development currently. As there are no current or active 'updates' for this game and it is listed under the "vaporware" category.
The game begins during a wedding celebration in the Green Isles that goes horribly wrong when a dark enchantment befalls the land. From there, King Graham embarks on a journey to reverse the spell, but as he does, he starts finding out that there's much more going on than what meets the eye. The story eventually tells the tale of two societies -- the Black Cloak Society and the Silver Cloak Society -- that were at war more than a thousand years ago. At that time, a prophecy was uttered. This prophecy is linked to the Daventry family and ties all the events that have taken place during each King's Quest game. 
So far four episodes have been released, and part five is in vaporware mode, there have been no updates since around August 2013.
- An unofficial timeline was created for this game by the The Silver Lining team. However, no official source has given specific calendar dates (except for mentioning how much time passed between each game). It should be noted however that The Silver Lining timeline differs from the official sources in references to time between games made in the sierra games, game manuals and official strategy guides. It is unknown if its merely a mistake on their part, or intentional. It is also not known to what extent the The Silver Lining timeline will affect the storyline of their game (I.E. how many specific references to dates will be made within the game itself).
- The Silver lining takes many liberties and has many inconsistencies with the previous games and other official content, for more information and examples, see TSL universe.
- Peter Spear had previously expressed interest in writing an unofficial novelization of The Silver Lining for the TSL team.
- The developers have said that The Silver Lining is inspired by the events seen in the official KQ games rather than the remakes, such as KQ2 remake. So expanded history, new characters, and altered characters from the remakes do not apply to the story. "No, our game and timeline are independent of the AGDI KQ2+", according to The Silver Lining chatlog.
- The unofficial timeline gives dates for the first withdrawal. The King's Quest Companion, the only official source to mention the withdrawals, never actually mentions when the events took place (though one reference suggests it was between a thousand to a few eons ago). The manuals never mention withdrawals and rather give a different theory of Daventry's existence, stating that Daventry existed on the earth in the past. The date was formerly 4000 BDC in earlier versions of the TSL timeline, but changed to 10,000 BDC due to inspiration from the earliest known date in the official timeline, c. 10,000 BGC. That is 10.5 millenia ago, that means 10 millenia before the founding of the Kingdom of Daventry).
- The game was formerly known as King's Quest IX', then shortened to KQIX: Every Cloak Has A Silver Lining, but was finally shortened to "The Silver Lining" for its first release.
- The game was originally going to be released as a trilogy, under the titles; Part I: Shadows, Part II: The Two That Are One, Part III: Eternities. Each part was to be three chapters long. However, due to various reasons production stopped on parts II, III, and chapter three of part I. it was decided to release only the finished work under the title The Silver Lining. The rest of the story may never be released.
- On Feb. 28, 2010, it is announced that Activision ordered the fan group to cease development of the game. An online petition to save The Silver Lining was subsequently launched and can be found here.
- On June 26,2010, it was announced that an agreement had been reached between Phoenix Online and Activision and that the first episode of TSL would be released on July 10, 2010.
- Although The Silver Lining uses information inspired by The King's Quest Companion, the team has chosen to ignore the book for the most part. Instead choosing to only use information originating from the games (though in a few instances they chose to deviate from the details of the games for the sake of their story, 'artistic license').
- The The Silver Lining Timeline assumed that the cataclysm in KQ8 only affected Daventry, and not any of the surrounding kingdoms. It did not directly affect the Land of the Green Isles. Princess Rosella was able to travel to the Lands of the Green Isles, distressed about the news of the cataclysm in Daventry. King Alexander attempted to lead an expedition to save his father but failed, forced to retreat back to his lands. It is stated in Mask of Eternity that the cataclysm actually affected the entire world.
- The Four Winds was the name of a newspaper published and distributed in the Land of the Green Isles. Its main publishing hub was located in the town square of the Village of the Crown.
- According to the related timeline, fiery wolves were said to have attacked Dahlia. In official lore they were just grey wolves.
- Roberta Williams has played the first chapter, and enjoyed it. She has as of yet, not given her opinion of the later chapters, nor is it known if she she has played them or not.
- Back when the game was intended to be three long chapters with three playable characters, there was originally plans to visit lands with the names such as Dreoria (Land of the Dragons), Dreamworld, Endless Forest, Maze of Infinity, and Astratos. Kolyma was also mentioned as a place visited briefly as well. Only Dreamworld has been visited briefly, and as of yet Astratos has only been mentioned. Early pictures have also shown darkworld type versions of the Green Islands areas, perhaps part of the Dreamworld. Other early screenshots showed scenes of Etheria, but those have most likely been cut. Most of the other areas will not be seen, as much of the story has been cut (including the Rosella and Alexander storylines). In addition Daventry was said to be visited as well (with several characters heading there at the end of the Episode 4). It seems this may be the case in Episode 5. Though a (dreamlike) version of Land of the Clouds can be seen at the end of Episode 4.
The Silver Lining has been the target of mixed reviews ranging from negative to positive, to a mix of both negative and positive criticism. For more detailed information, see The Silver Lining reviews.
Episode 3 Reviews
- The Silver Lining - Official Site
- The Silver Lining - Wikipedia
- Phoenix Online Studios
- Official Online Petition to Save TSL
- ↑ http://www.tsl-game.com/index.php
- ↑ “Without the bravery and persistence of these volunteers, it is almost certain that King’s Quest would have been relegated to a forgotten obscurity—its story left untold. Now there is a chance to truly find out what happens to the royal family of the Kingdom of Daventry. I, like many other fans, would like to see how this story unfolds!”