(Re: King’s Quest Online)
I agree that the plot idea I mentioned is a bit on the hokey side, but
then I came up with it on the spot while replying to Barry’s post. The
point is the storyline is open-ended enough to allow quests and
storypoints to be interwoven at will. At this paticular point, I only
have the most basic of basic storylines in place (which I have posted
here). I come from a mix of both programming and graphic design
backgrounds, so I tend to think of things in terms of objects and how I
can put those objects together.
In it’s simplest form, think of the storyline I have posted as a
barebone story. If you were looking through the TV Guide and this was a
movie, you would see that barebone storyline as the description of the
For the point of conversation, let’s disect the storyline I have
provided into it’s most basic components:
2.0 Basic Storyline
The game takes place during the time between KQVII and KQVIII. The Black
Cloak Society has kidnapped Queen Cassima of the Land of the Green
Isles, Queen Rosella of Etheria, and Queen Valanice of Daventry. The
King’s of the assorted lands (Alexander, Edgar, and Graham) have sent a
royal call to all adventurers to find the missing Queens and bring them
First, the storyline premise is three lines. This is the average length
of most catchlines to movies or even books. The point of your average
catchline is to “catch your interest” while setting the tone of what
your about to watch, read, play, whatever.
The first line “The game takes place during the time between KQVII and
KQVIII” sets the timeframe for when the game takes place. While the game
isn’t being marketed solely to KQ fans, this line gives people a frame
of reference for when our paticular game takes place (which is after
Rosella and Edgar live happily ever after and before the Mask of
Eternity is broken into four pieces).
The second line “The Black Cloak Society has kidnapped Queen Cassima of
the Land of the Green Isles, Queen Rosella of Etheria, and Queen
Valanice of Daventry.” sets up the main conflict in the game. It also
introduces three of the pivotal NPC’s in the game, Cassima, Rosella, and
Valanice. You cannot have a game or a movie or anything else of interest
without a conflict of some kind. This line also sets up the main
antagonist/villian in the game, which in this case is the Black Cloak
Society. So in a nutshell, the BCS kidnaps the royal queens. This sets
up conflict (as it can be safetly assumed that no one wants to see
someone get kidnapped.) It also establishes a tie between the conflict
and individual players. Again, this game isn’t marketed solely towards
KQ players, but it can be safetly assumed that the majority of players
will come from an Adventure game background and that would include at
least one KQ game. By establishing a tie between the player and the
game, you invoke interest (gosh, I wonder why the BCS kidnapped the
The third line “The King’s of the assorted lands (Alexander, Edgar, and
Graham) have sent a royal call to all adventurers to find the missing
Queens and bring them home safely.” establishes the point of the game.
It establishes what it is the players are trying to accomplish (the main
goal). It also works with the second line to establish more more pivotal
NPC’s in the game, which in turn helps establish a tie between the
player and the game.
Together, these three lines provide a simple enough description of the
game to give players an idea of what the game is about and what they can
expect to do in the game.
For conversation, look at any game that has come out. I’ll provide three
examples, one from a specific genre. Read the description and then see
if you can figure out what game the description is describing.
Adventure – In the 80’s, a nerdy man who has bad luck with women goes on
a quest to get laid and in the process gets more than he bargained for.
Shooter – In the distant future, aliens have invaded a base on one of
the moons of Jupitor and the sole survivor must battle his way through
the hordes to stop the monstrosities from invading Earth.
RTS – In the near future, two worldwide organizations wage war against
each other for world dominiation and control of a newly discovered
Bonus question (this one isn’t a game).
A reviled creature must travel a land of fantasy and fable to save a
damsel in distress to get a pint-sized ruler to clear out the creature’s
unwanted fairytale guests.
As for the game being moot unless Ken takes an interest, I don’t see why
Ken has anything to do with it. Ken (and Roberta) do not own the rights
to KQ or any of it’s characters. That paticular copyright is owned by
Sierra (which is owned by Vivendi Universal). While the help of the
Williams would be great, it’s not something that I am counting on. They
are busy living their lives and to be honest, if I were them, I would be
doing the same.
That said, I’m designing this game to the best of my ability. Once the
design has reached a prototype-able stage, I’ll probably get a couple of
people together to prototype the design into something playable (read:
not a finished product, but something that showcases the main highlights
of the game and it’s potential) and then send it to Sierra/VU and see
what kind of response I get. Game companies get game ideas all the time,
but actually taking the time to prototype a design is an important step
in setting up something that may one day be a commercial product.
But I am definitely getting ahead of myself here. First thing is first
and that is to finish my design (or at least get the design to a point
to where I can begin the prototype process). In the meantime, I’ll
probably continue to post ideas here to gauge responses. The users of
this board are one of the main demographic areas KQO is targeted at (the
other being the MMORPG market). As such, the feedback I get here will
play a significant role in the way the design is shaped.
>I sorta have to agree with Barry.
>>you could rescue Valanice from an evil member of the Black Cloak Society
>>and bring her back to Daventry only to discover you have brought an
>>illusion that enables a Black Cloak Society wizard to attempt to
>>assasinate Graham. Or perhaps the kidnapping was merely a diversion for
>Yes, but then the stories all become sorta hokey, as someone else (unless
>was Barry again) also mentioned. Which brings me back to the 2 things I
>I certainly find the ideas you’ve been posting from your KQO design
>interesting. I guess we all just have different ideas about such a game
>could or should work. Of course, this is all moot, unless Ken takes a