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King's Quest II: Romancing the Throne

aka: KQ2
Moby ID: 123
Atari ST Specs

Description official descriptions

After having recovered the three treasures, King Graham has been crowned king. Now having needing a queen for companionship, Graham searches the land for a maiden, but to no avail, so he turns to the magic mirror for help. The mirror shows him a beautiful girl locked away in a quartz tower in a faraway land of Kolyma, and must find three keys that are used to unlock the door that will lead to her.

King's Quest II: Romancing the Throne is a graphic adventure game. As is typical for Sierra's AGI games, players move Graham around with arrow keys and perform actions by typing commands in the interface, which are usually combination of verbs and nouns. The game is similar to its predecessor in structure and gameplay system. Like Daventry, Kolyma is a large cyclical world consisting of interconnected screens. Compared to the first game, it is bigger and busier, with more locations and places of interest. Puzzles follow a similar format; knowledge of fairy tales is advisable for solving some of them, and complex solutions grant the player more points than a brute force approach possible in some cases.

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Credits (Atari ST version)

8 People

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Reviews

Critics

Average score: 76% (based on 13 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.5 out of 5 (based on 102 ratings with 4 reviews)

By the time you get to the Queen you will no longer want her

The Good
If you liked the first King's Quest then this is more of the same. Some of the inventory based puzzles are logical to figure out...

The Bad
...and some of the puzzles are completely ridiculous. There is a reasonable way to get past the snake for instance but the 'better' solution is bizarre. There is also a limit on how many times you can approach the doors you need to unlock before the game is unwinnable. Gotchas like this take away from the overall enjoyment.

The Bottom Line
Not as good as the first game in the series. If you want to find your Queen go out & meet a real woman instead.

DOS · by Grumpy Quebecker (818) · 2023

Solid continuation using the same formula

The Good
I liked KQ2 even a bit more than KQ1. All strong points of KQ1 are there (see my KQ1 review), but KQ2 appears more polished to me. Compared to KQ1, there were no overly frustrating puzzles, navigating around island was better, you can meet again lot of fairy tales characters, you can solve many puzzles in different ways and main plot was again very simple but enjoyable. All in all, walking through land of Kolyma to search for your bride, was pleasant experience with no dull points.

The Bad
Similar to KQ1, story is really simple. You just search for your bride, that's it.

The Bottom Line
Because KQ2 is quite short, and puzzles are not very difficult, the game can be enjoyed even in "modern times" for the first time while not loosing much time at it.

DOS · by Vladimir Dienes · 2023

great when I played it, but it sure didn't age well

The Good
It's a Sierra adventure game. If you like the style, you will like this one, too. Also, it's fun seeing all the fairy tale characters like Red Riding Hood, the evil witch, the mermaid, King Triton, Dracula (okay, maybe Dracula isn't quite fairy tale material, but Dracula's castle must be the coolest part of the game!)

The Bad
the typical Sierra problems - you can maneuver yourself into a situation from where the game is unbeatable - you didn't pick up a certain item at a certain point and now it's too late, etc. Also, there's a lot of unnecessary stuff in the game. You find a certain item that gives you lots of points but is not useful for anything and not necessary to solve the game. The stuff that needs to be done to solve the game is quite few, actually. Also, it didn't stand up to other Sierra games at the time - Space Quest, Police Quest, and Leisure Suit Larry all were clearly superior.

The Bottom Line
Worth playing through at least once, it still is an important game in the history of Sierra games and adventure games in general, but it sure didn't age well.

DOS · by Gothicgene (66) · 2002

[ View all 4 player reviews ]

Trivia

References

  • The game has several easter eggs, including a cameo appearance of the Batmobile outside of the evil witch's cave.
  • In the "Pegasus" section, if you look in a hole in one of the screens, it'll play a quick demo for Space Quest, whose designers also worked on this game.
  • Kolyma is, in fact, a river far in north-eastern Siberia, infamous for Soviet prison camps in this area. Millions of "enemies of the Soviet Union" perished in the whole "Gulag Archipelago", including the Kolyma camps, which were among the most terrible ones due to very harsh climate.

Information also contributed by -Chris, Nowhere Girl, and WizardX

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Andy Roark.

Macintosh added by Trypticon. Amiga added by POMAH. Apple II added by Katakis | カタキス. Apple IIgs added by Garcia. Atari ST added by Belboz.

Additional contributors: Shampoo-Girl, Katakis | カタキス, Jeanne, Jayson Firestorm, Alaka, Macs Black, Picard, Patrick Bregger.

Game added May 19, 1999. Last modified February 13, 2024.