Game Title:
King's Quest III: To Heir is Human (Grey Box)
Release Date: 11-xx-1986
Release Number:
Part of Series: King's Quest
Previous Game in Series:
King's Quest II: Romancing the Throne
Next Game in Series: King's Quest IV: The Perils of Rosella
Designer: Roberta Williams

The king and queen gave birth to two children, Alexander and Rosella, and the kingdom was once peaceful. It wasn't long until Alexander was snatched from his crib and things started to take a turn for the worse. A three-headed dragon threatens the ever-peaceful Daventry, and requires a maiden to be sacrificed every year. Rosella is the chosen one.  Alexander, meanwhile, is taken to a faraway land of Llewdor. Named Gwydion, Alexander becomes a slave to an evil wizard called Manannan who prepares to kill Alexander on his 18th birthday, for fear that he would discover the wizard's spells and use them against him.  (From Mobygames description)

Alternate Releases:
King's Quest III: To Heir is Human (Gold Box)

King's Quest 3 History

Roberta says:
My earlier games, from Mystery House to King's Quest II, were great games, but they couldn't have the deep complex plots I wanted due to memory and space limitations.  Basically they were treasure hunts with lots of simple goals (you go from here to there) and fun puzzles to add challenge.  King's Quest III had to push things a little farther.  The designs had to be more complicated, the plots better and longer, and the characters more developed with personalities and more dialog.  First I'd start with a mystery: "Who's that character?  Where's King Graham?"  Then I'd add the pressure of an evil magician watching your every move, ready to kill you for any mistake.  The puzzles were focused on helping you struggle to escape the wizard and right an old wrong you know nothing about, to tie up everything with a climactic ending. Rosella was introduced toward the end of the game; seeing her on screen for the first time, I suddenly saw her on her own adventures in a sequel.  (From Roberta Williams Anthology manual, 1996)

Roberta Williams, who designed Sierra's first game, Mystery House in 1980, felt it was time to write another murder mystery which lived up to the computer capabilities of the late eighties. Mystery House, which was put on public domain in 1988, was the first computer game ever with graphics, but it lacked colors, animation and sound. The Colonel's Bequest was developed, using EGA graphics, Sierra's SCI engine, sound and a music score, as well as featuring a deeper plot and more detailed character descriptions.

The game has a sequel, The Dagger of Amon Ra, which is also the last Laura Bow game. Both games are also included in the 1997 King's Quest Collection and the Roberta Williams Anthology. Although the original release of The Colonel's Bequest can still relatively easily be found on online auctions, a complete original game is considered as a true collector's item, as it contains many goodies which are often missing from second-hand sales, particularly the Laura Bow pen and notebook. The games copyright protection is also quite original: the gamer needs to use a magnifying glass (included in the box) to identify a fingerprint on the game screen.