King's Quest 1 History
So IBM wanted a new type of game to show off its new computer. I was thinking about a fairy tale adventure with lost treasures, giants, dragons, leprechauns, a gingerbread house, a troll bridge, guessing a gnome's name. Underground and sky castles were always popular stories, so I had to find ways to include them too. Flat pictures wouldn't do. It had to be animated. You had to be careful climbing the magic beanstalk or you'd fall. Limited floppy space would have restricted my design, but we had been compressing our pictures by drawing them as lines and fill colors for a while. That scheme was kept all the way up to King's Quest V. People were amazed you could walk around these detailed scenes, behind trees and in front of rocks.
I received a LOT of letters about the old gnome's name. In retrospect it was an awfully nasty puzzle (using a backwards alphabet to spell Rumpelstiltskin), but that was a typical "advanced" puzzle in those days. At least you had an alternate path to win the game if you couldn't figure it out. We toned it down a bit in the remake; now you just spell Rumpelstiltskin backward. (The Roberta Williams Anthology Manual, 1996)