E3: Hands-On with King's Quest: A Knight to Remember (See What They Did There?)

From Brandon Gerson Of Nerdy Show, for Bleeding Cool,

King's Quest is where the modern incarnation of adventure/ puzzle games began. The series was created by Sierra in the golden age of adventure games back in 1984 for PC and became and instant legend. This led to many sequels, some even more impressive than previous titles. Then in 1998, with the 8th installment in the series, things got ugly behind the scenes. 17 years later, after many failed attempts to resurrect the series, the wait is over.

The last developer to hold the keys to the King's Quest kingdom was the adventure game revivalists, Telltale, but their rendition was cancelled in 2013. Rights holders Activision proclaimed, "screw it! We're doing this ourselves and bringing back Sierra!" With the invaluable advice and blessings of the original designer and creator for the series, Roberta Williams, and with the team of The Odd Gentlemen Company, they've designed an episodic adventure of Kingly proportions.

If that history lesson bored you, then let me just say this: Christopher Lloyd narrates this game. You heard me right. Doc Brown himself is the lead vocal role for the new King's Quest. In a similar manner to the recent indie smash, Bastion, every action in the game comes with two cents from Lloyd. It's hilarious.kings-quest-hands-on-2

That's not enough for you? Fine. I guess I'll elaborate a little more: In King's Quest: A Knight to Remember, Christopher Lloyd plays an elderly King Grahame telling his granddaughter Gwendolyn the story of how he became king – recollecting the original King's Quest games. Yup, you heard me. It's essentially a remake wrapped in a retelling of the events of the original games. Chapter 1 is the very first game in it's entirety.

All previous titles in the King's Quest series are still cannon, but this new King's Quest adds much more story, context, and narrative along with the same humor and bizarre deaths that we all love from the games of old. As an example, here's but one part of my experience: In the demo I found an axe. Obviously, my instinct is to slash up everything immediately, but as soon as I pick it up, good ol' Christopher Lloyd says, "now I didn't just go around swinging my axe at everything." But, c'mon, of course I tried it anyway!kings-quest-hands-on-1

I swung that axe at first tree I passed, but Lloyd proclaimed that he just "didn't feel like chopping any trees down during that time long ago." So then I tried the axe on a goat…nothing. So I swung two more times…nothing. After the last swing, the goat ate me. Game Over. Brilliant! This is the wacky and kind of useless deaths that I loved about the original games.

King's Quest: A Knight to Remember has all the spirit of the series, and more. Expect Chapter 1 on PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One in late July.

About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.