King's Quest II: Romancing the Throne
1985 Sierra On-Line
Designed by Roberta Williams
Character movement is done in real-time. Together with the geography, this
means you have to be careful near cliffs, stairs, etc. The net result is
tedium: it's not difficult enough to be interesting, but it's common enough
to be annoying.
There are occasional real-time antagonists (Hagatha, sorceror, dwarf). Your
only defence is to run away. Again, there is no challenge, it is only annoying.
You have to wait for Little Red Riding Hood to appear. You also have to exit/
return until the wolf and dwarf are absent, and until Dracula appears. More
The relevance comes from allusion: the challenges are set in the context of
popular fairy tales, folk tales, and mythology. The objects and actions are
relevant to those tales. Otherwise, there is little plot or back-story to be
It's a fairy-tale world, but everything fits in with the relevant tale.
In roughly increasing order of forgivability:
*) Use a bridle on a snake? I didn't find any clue suggesting that the pegasus
had been turned into a snake.
*) How do you know if/when the bird is going to sing in Hagatha's cave? It's
as likely to chirp out as it sees you approaching. Why should the cloth
stop it from singing? It didn't stop our budgie...
*) Give flowers to a mermaid? Alas, fickle man...
*) You can only cross the bridge the minimum number of times strictly needed.
This can lead to a long term dead end -- perhaps the game arbitrarily kills
*) Use the net to catch a fish, but then immediately throw it back? Why bother
fishing in the first place? This isn't a vacation.
*) Why doesn't the mermaid appear until after I read the inscription? Similar
for antique shop opening and ferryman appearing. You have to re-travel the
land looking for the change. The shop and crossing are reasonable places to
revisit, but the mermaid's rock isn't.
*) Why give the bird to the lady? I can't recall her mentioning it...
Only the bridle is completely stupid. Is there some allusion I've missed? The
chasm crossings might be a major pain, having to replay a good chunk of the
game because of some early, innocent mistake. The cage cloth probably requires
*) wearing the robe and ring
*) throwing the bridle to the snake
*) figuring out what to do next: things happen behind your back