Summary of King’s Quest V: Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder

by on Jul.04, 2010, under summary, tsl

Release Day is in 6 days!

Today we take a look back on a game that marked many momentous changes for the King’s Quest series. King’s Quest V was a record-breaking first foray for the series into the 256 VGA graphics, into CD-ROMs, the first point-and-click interface, and the first game to have voiced characters! All things that became hallmarks of the ‘golden age’ of adventure gaming.

And it all begins as King Graham returned from his morning walk in the countryside….

King’s Quest V: Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder


It was a peaceful time for Daventry and with the health of the king restored, the people only saw bright skies ahead. But a dark shadow was descending upon the family once again. As Graham took his morning walk, an evil wizard, Mordack, appeared before the castle. With one quick spell, he swept the entire castle and the rest of the royal family away into the air! Graham searched everywhere for somebody who could give account to the dark deed. There was no one, save for a little owl in a blue vest. His name was Cedric and he took the king to Serenia to see Crispin, a good wizard.

Crispin started Graham on his journey through Serenia, encountering gnomes, witches, elves, bandits, and gypsies. With the gypsies’ help, Graham learned that the villain had kidnapped them to force Alexander to turn Mordack’s brother Manannan from a cat back into the wizard. This was the same wizard who had kidnapped the prince as an infant and from whom Alexander escaped by turning the wizard into a cat in the first place; now Mordack claimed that only Alexander could reverse the spell. If Alexander, who didn’t know how to reverse the spell even if he wanted to, continued to refuse, Mordack asserted that he would kill Alexander’s family one by one. With this knowledge, Graham’s quest became even more urgent.

Graham traveled through the White Mountains, besting a Yeti and melting the heart of the Ice Queen, barely escaping the nest of a giant winged monster, and then evading some vicious harpies before sailing across a wide ocean in order to reach Mordack’s castle. With the help of the mermaid named Pearl, Graham and Cedric arrived on the barren shores of Mordack’s island. The air was heavy with foreboding as Graham slowly approached the castle and bypassed the main gate by entering an underground labyrinth.

He wandered the maze for hours, searching for a way to escape the mind-bending halls but only came across strange creatures he had never seen before. Finally, he found a door leading into a kitchen, where a young maid, cleaning the floors, spotted the king and quickly cowered away from him. After reassuring her by returning a lost locket, Graham discovered she was Princess Cassima of the Land of the Green Isles–and Mordack’s captive. She informed Graham that his family had been shrunk and placed in a glass bottle in the wizard’s work room. She also promised to help the king in any way she could, and he in turn promised her he would find a way to return her to her homeland if he could.

Graham’s good luck wasn’t to last as he entered the work room. Although he was able to swipe Mordack’s wand and transfer its power to the wand Crispin had initially entrusted to him, Mordack soon found out. While attempting to kill Graham, Mordack discovered his wand’s power had been drained and that killing Graham would not be as easy to defeat as expected. A dangerous magical battle of transformations began, with Mordack constantly trying to find a way to best the King, but Graham outwitted the wizard at every turn. As the evil wizard transformed to a ring of fire, Graham became a rainstorm that washed him out, defeating the wizard once and for all and ending his terrifying hold on Graham’s family!

Castle Daventry, and the Royal Family, was restored to its former glory with the help of Crispin, and an attraction sparked instantly between Alexander and Cassima. Crispin cast a spell to send Graham and his family home where they were greeted happily by the people of Daventry. Alexander continued to dream about the lovely and brave Cassima and how he had promised to visit her one day… but that is another story, and for now, the family celebrated their return home and Mordack’s defeat.

1 Comment for this entry

  • Teboda

    This was my first VGA-game! It was magical seeing games with those amazing graphics! Loved this game and in my mind it remains one of the best in the series even if it wasn’t as epic as KQIV.