How You Shouldn’t Deliver Exposition– King’s Quest (part 5)

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In my series of rant posts against this game I’ve noticed one thing that seems prevalent in most of them. That is a boring intro puzzle sequence which could easily be explained in one or two sentences (as I will demonstrate) and chapter 4 is no exception. The game takes well over 15 minutes to tell you a small amount of things.

The king and queen have had two babies, one girl and one boy but the boy was kidnapped by Manny who is now called Mannanan. After relentlessly searching for the boy they give up until he shows up on their doorstep when he’s older. That’s what the first 20 minutes is, completely boring and useless. I get that it’s important to establish the history/backstory of the game but was a 10 minute puzzle about feeding two babies really useful? I almost completely stopped playing during that puzzle it sucked that badly.

So after this opening they get ready and launch you straight into the game. No, no they don’t. Instead they waste even more of your time by explaining three objects that aren’t important and aren’t relevant, from what I remember the only thing that they do with them is make you save them in chapter 5, that’s it. I wouldn’t mind them explaining the artefacts if they we’re important but they’re just not.

I get the feeling that the creators had made the game and then realised that it was only half an hour long so they went back to add a bunch of useless things to add padding and make the game feel longer. The first 45 minutes of this game is genuinely forgettable, the earliest part that I remembered when I started writing this post was the shopping list game (which wasn’t even good).

So you introduce Prince Alexander (the prince who was kidnapped and then came back) to your favourite towns person (or person who you accidently got paired up with when you liked the other characters way better) and that’s pretty boring. One of the only real charming things was the fact that Amaya had got married to whisper – it brought me back to the great character interactions from the first chapter which I had been missing.

You then pack your things – which is also a puzzle – and set off to see princess Vee who is the sister of King Graham’s wife. Once again you receive more padding where nothing happens and then play the shopping list game. The puzzle here is very annoying as you have to remember everything that everybody says in order and then add something of your own. It either leads to you writing them all down (a pretty terrible solution to a puzzle) or failing to get the right answer and losing.

If you win you’re rewarded with an achievement. So if you lose and want to go back to get that achievement you once again have to go through 45 minutes of poor gameplay to get another shot. If completing this games’ series of annoying achievements is something that you aim to do then mistakes like this only waste your time to make the game feel longer.

I thought talking about this game would be quite short however it seems that I actually have a lot more to say about it for the future. So stay tuned for my next posts where I talk about how they base one puzzle around the entire game. Sorry if these posts feel like I’m trying to stretch something out, it’s just that I feel that the next post coming is too long to combine it to this one.

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