Charming to its core, King’s Quest: A Knight to Remember is a re-imagining of an adventure series that spans more than three decades that fans both old and new can enjoy.
With developer The Odd Gentlemen taking the helm, “A Knight to Remember” is the first installment in the series’ new episodic format.
The story’s narration would feel right at home in the pages of “The Princess Bride.”
Sickly and old, King Graham, voiced by “Back to the Future” star Christopher Lloyd (there’s even a “Back to the Future” Easter egg late in the first episode) lays the groundwork of his future kingship by telling his granddaughter, the lively and spunky Gwendolyn, the story of how he first became a knight in King Edward’s court.
And suddenly we are teleported back in time as young knight Graham arrives in Daventry on a quest to find King Edward’s stolen magic mirror down a well. Once inside, Graham discovers the well is actually a giant cave with, surprisingly, many beds and a mighty dragon lurking about.
After besting the beast, we travel even further back in time and our adventure truly begins with young Graham as he attempts to win his knightship in a series of trials against other hopefuls.
One of which is another familiar, unmistakable voice from the past, Wallace Shawn, who played Vizzini in “The Princess Bride.”
From here on there are puzzles to solve, quick time events (yawn) and some platforming elements in the form of simple jump puzzles, none of which are particularly challenging. If you happen to die, you’ll respawn right before you began the sequence so you can make another attempt at the puzzle.
“King’s Quest” is a story driven game full of jokes, quips and puns, and is largely entertaining as a whole, for young and old. While probably not suitable for young children, kids probably 10 and up will enjoy the story and the game’s constant barrage of jokes.
There are some genuinely funny, laugh-out-loud moments throughout that even adults will enjoy.
There are a few drawbacks. One frustrating aspect is without a map, it’s not always clear where you’re supposed to go or who you are supposed to give what item to so you can advance the story.
The world isn’t massive by any means but there is a fair amount of backtracking that gets annoying after a while if you can’t remember exactly where to go. If you can’t finish something now, come back later after you have found more items or talked to more NPC’s.
Get out there and explore, and eventually you will figure everything out. Often finding just one item creates a domino effect where several things will all of a sudden make sense and fall into place.
There are objective variations throughout the game. For instance, what you use a work order for, like say crushing a rock or chopping down a tree.
Or what you choose for a wagon wheel early on in the game – there is no one end all, be all way to finish many of the tasks and there are different ways to complete them.
Visually, aside from some of the character models, the game is a work of art – literally. King’s Quest is all hand-painted and then scanned, and then another artist creates the actual 3D environments and characters in the game.
It’s a beautiful game in just about every way with plenty of eye candy. The voice acting for the most part also is great, and the voice actors do a great job bringing the characters to life.
The bridge trolls’ secret meetings are particularly fun to eavesdrop on.
The release date for the second episode has yet to be revealed. But there is believed to be about two months between each episode so all signs point to the end of September. This honestly isn’t the type of game I would normally play, and I’ve never played any other games in the series.
So is Graham’s adventure worth beginning for new players or continuing to the next episode? In a word, absolutely.