Author Topic: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?  (Read 29559 times)

Offline DawsonJ

  • Great Oracle
  • *****
  • Posts: 689
  • Gender: Male
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #20 on: June 28, 2011, 09:24:40 PM »
Sierra was to adventure games what XTree was to directory listings - they didn't just use the existing simplistic style; they gave it a whole new aspect; though often not accredited with their own accomplishments. In other words, Sierra was the inventor of many things which made adventure gaming so special; LucasArts just used those ideas and abilities and mixed them with a new style, e.g. "Look At," "Pick Up," etc, instead of Sierra's icons. But Sierra was first to implement a GUI for text parser adventures. So... when the Master dies, as do the followers. LucasArts got away with a couple games after Sierra died, but everything changed during that time period.

Although Myst was popular, many of us felt the lack of emotion, due to the Puzzle/Hidden-Object-esque style. Now BigFish makes bank off of that, so things started a new direction at that point.

(Posted on: June 28, 2011, 10:52:59 PM)


Anyway... Enough about MY Opinions. ¿Qué opino yo? Who cares. I'm not out to cause a controversy. I was angry about recently learning about the inner struggles that lead to the demise of Sierra. Apparently, I've been taken too seriously. So, anyway, to each his own.

Offline drunkenmonkey

  • Devoted Knight
  • ***
  • Posts: 300
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #21 on: June 28, 2011, 09:34:18 PM »
You'll never get me to say a hidden object game is an adventure game.>:( I don't even like it when a myst-like game is mentioned in the same sentence as a point and click graphic adventure with both being on different sides of the spectrum.

True that when Goldeneye on the N64 became popular and there was an ever rising trend in FPS, allot of gamers went in that direction. Adventure games could be completed very easily with the aid of walkthroughs and publishers felt that 2D adventures were no longer marketable.

Fast forward to today and you see that many modern commercial full adventure games with advanced lighting and shadowing techniques etc. are from German developers. Whether with translation issues or a different view of adventures these games fall short and are even obscure in todays games market.

Telltale games are another aspect of popular adventure games. Say what you will about their approach and how they are adventure-lite according to traditional adventurers, these games are helping to get adventure games recognized by a new generation of fans and are doing the right thing in order to mainstream adventures for today's gamers, because lets face it old school wasn't cutting it anymore. 

Offline MusicallyInspired

  • Powerful Wizard
  • ******
  • Posts: 955
  • Gender: Male
    • BrandonBlume.com - Freelance Music Services
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #22 on: June 28, 2011, 11:16:55 PM »
Goldeneye didn't bring about the FPS phenomenon. It was a result of it.

Offline drunkenmonkey

  • Devoted Knight
  • ***
  • Posts: 300
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #23 on: June 28, 2011, 11:23:39 PM »
Yeah but up to that point, FPS was mainly a PC experience. FPS reached many more people through consoles.

Offline glottal

  • Devoted Knight
  • ***
  • Posts: 257
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #24 on: June 28, 2011, 11:32:03 PM »
Who cares. I'm not out to cause a controversy. I was angry about recently learning about the inner struggles that lead to the demise of Sierra. Apparently, I've been taken too seriously. So, anyway, to each his own.

Well, you can do what you want - if you've had enough of this conversation, whatever, you're the master of your own free time.  I don't see what the controversy is - I don't think it's a controversy whenever people who are in a discussion don't agree with each other.

Offline darthkiwi

  • Staff
  • Powerful Wizard
  • ***
  • Posts: 958
  • Gender: Male
  • Imagine that I've written something witty here.
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #25 on: June 29, 2011, 04:28:40 PM »
Glottal - your copyright law suggestion intrigues me. I've often thought it seems madness for intellectual property to be bought and sold by companies so that somebody can end up with a property, almost by accident, which they have no interest in. Like what's happened with KQ. I have always thought that copyright law exists to protect the creators of a work from being screwed over: for example, if a writer writes a book and it's successful, copyright law prevents somebody from buying one copy of the book, copying it all out, printing it and selling it cheaper than the writer's publishers, thus making a killing out of the writer's efforts. I don't really see how that translates to a property like KQ, where almost all interest had officially lapsed and where the original creators were, bizarrely, in a position where, even if they *had* wanted to continue the series, they wouldn't have the right to.

But I'm curious, why 14 years? Why not 10 or 20?

Also, what if an IP is being constantly used? For example, if KQ was started in 1983 then the copyright for KQ would run until 1997. Does this mean that Sierra would have to apply for an extension in 1997, or would the copyright be "refreshed" every time a new KQ game was released?
Prince of the Aquitaine. Duke of York.

Knight errant and consort to Her Grace the Empress Deloria of the Holy Roman Empire, Queene of all Albion and Princess Palatine.

Offline glottal

  • Devoted Knight
  • ***
  • Posts: 257
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #26 on: July 01, 2011, 01:18:35 AM »
darthkiwi - I started a new thread to continue this conversation (I didn't get to your last question - the post was getting too long)

http://www.postudios.com/blog/forum/index.php?topic=10847.0

Offline Big C from Cauney island

  • Royal Heir
  • ****
  • Posts: 296
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #27 on: July 01, 2011, 08:17:02 AM »
Adventure games began to decline I would say around 1993. Doom is what kicked in FPS. Then all the doom clones came out, rest is history.  I think FPS in part had to do with the decline of the genre.

Offline MikPal

  • Staff
  • Great Oracle
  • ***
  • Posts: 509
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #28 on: July 01, 2011, 09:31:07 AM »
Quote
I think FPS in part had to do with the decline of the genre.

So the sudden increase of the console market had nothing to do with it?

Offline Blackthorne

  • Powerful Wizard
  • ******
  • Posts: 892
  • Gender: Male
  • Infamous Adventurer
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #29 on: July 01, 2011, 10:25:59 AM »
Quote
I think FPS in part had to do with the decline of the genre.

So the sudden increase of the console market had nothing to do with it?


I wouldn't say that had an effect until about 1998 - the proliferation of the N64 and PlayStation as more affordable and higher end systems made consoles more attractive.  Up until them, the PC games were usually superior.


Bt
"You've got to keep one eye looking over your shoulder
you know it's going to get harder and harder as you
get older - but in the end you'll pack up, fly down south, hide your head in the sand.  Just another sad old man, all alone and dying of cancer." - Dogs, Pink Floyd.

Offline MikPal

  • Staff
  • Great Oracle
  • ***
  • Posts: 509
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #30 on: July 01, 2011, 11:10:21 AM »
I wouldn't say that had an effect until about 1998 - the proliferation of the N64 and PlayStation as more affordable and higher end systems made consoles more attractive.  Up until them, the PC games were usually superior.

Yeah, but computers were for nerds and dweebs. The original Playstation, which was for cool people, was released in 1994, so it should fit the timeline pretty good.

Offline Big C from Cauney island

  • Royal Heir
  • ****
  • Posts: 296
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #31 on: July 02, 2011, 06:21:11 AM »
As far as consoles go, when super nintendo came out that was affordable.  But adventure games were still around and popular. Genesis was around too. I don't think it was consoles, more style of game that affected the decline.

Offline MikPal

  • Staff
  • Great Oracle
  • ***
  • Posts: 509
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #32 on: July 02, 2011, 07:45:58 AM »
As far as consoles go, when super nintendo came out that was affordable.  But adventure games were still around and popular. Genesis was around too. I don't think it was consoles, more style of game that affected the decline.

But Nintendo and Sega were kids toys, man! And it was made by the guys who did my Walkman! It was a hundred bucks cheaper than a Sega Saturn. Four hundred bucks cheaper than a 3DO! Riiiidge Raceeer!!! I used to play the living (insert profanity here) out of that game in the arcades! No more childish sidescrollers, 'cause we have 3 (insert profanity here) Deee! No more clicking stuff, since I can move the guy on my TV with my controller! Now that's Immersion!! No fumbling with the Autoexec.bat or Config.sys! No more "Out of Memory"! No more bleeps and bloops from the PC-speaker! Freedom from the opressive machine!

Forget something being affordable. Think about where the people who raised the PS to it's modern glory came from.

Offline Damar

  • Royal Heir
  • ****
  • Posts: 493
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #33 on: July 05, 2011, 07:01:49 PM »
I don't know much about the fall of Sierra as a company or even about other genres taking over the adventure genre.  What I think a main issue was, though, was the companies purposely changing the adventure game formula.  There's a difference between improving an idea or changing with the times, and completely altering the core identity.  For example, one of the arguments against adventure games has been that they're too hard and unforgiving.  The games changed with the times and when KQ5 came around, they did away with the parser.  In KQ6 they did away with dead ends.  You can argue about whether something was lost with these things, but ultimately the identity of the game remained the same.

Now contrast that with the change between KQ6 and KQ7.  They continued to take the "it's too hard" complaint to heart and completely dumbed down the interface.  Is it just too hard to look around?  Well now your curser will sparkle when you move it over something important.  Don't know if that item can be used there?  Well why try it?  We'll make the item light up if it's usable.  Is saving your game just too hard?  Well now you can retry from the moment you died.  Is this all still way to hard for you and getting you stuck?  Well, now you have chapters so you can skip right to the end and feel like a big boy when you beat the game!  None of these were improvements.  In fact, I feel they watered down what an adventure game was.  People argued that the magic map in KQ3 removed the challenge.  That was nothing compared to this!  You had a magnificent game in KQ6, a symbol of what the adventure genre was, and you tweaked it so much that the sequel was a kiddie game.

And then after KQ7, it's as if they noticed the popularity of shooters, so they made Mask of Eternity and tried to act like it was still an adventure game.  Absolutely not!  Overcoming obstacles, trading with characters, and using your wits to travel and explore a new land to find a key to a magic door is an adventure game.  Jumping on tiles in a given order so that you can be given a key to open a door to kill skeletons is not an "adventure game puzzle."  They further altered what an adventure game was.  Or rather, they just made a first person shooter and called it an adventure game.

I understand that some things do have to change with time, however that only goes so far.  Some things you just can't change without corrupting the underlying idea.  There comes a point where you just admit that either your product is no longer a part of the public consciousness and settle into a niche market and pray for a retro phase, or you just pack it up and go home.  Continuing to alter what you are eventually removes the soul from your work.  When the creators of this game crossed that line, thinking that it would lead to more sales, that's when I think the adventure genre died.

Offline Baggins

  • Read-Only
  • Magical Genie
  • *
  • Posts: 2554
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #34 on: July 18, 2011, 08:58:15 PM »
Umm, btw, KQ6 is filled with about as many dead ends as in KQ5, just most of the items that will cause them are clustered in two or three places (see Catacombs, the Land of the Dead, and the Castle of the Crown).
Well, ya, King's Quest is on Earth. Daventry is very old city from a long time ago. It's in ruins now and people aren't quite sure exactly where it used to be. There are some archaeologists searching through the ruins, they think they know its Daventry. But its somewhere on Earth."-Roberta Williams http://kingsquest.wikia.com/wiki/File:Daventryisearth.ogg

Offline Damar

  • Royal Heir
  • ****
  • Posts: 493
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #35 on: July 22, 2011, 01:43:11 PM »
True enough, though they were still trying to do away with them.  Though I would argue that the nature of the dead ends changed as well.  In earlier games you could simply not have an item and have no clue that you were missing something, then get stuck.  In King's Quest VI, you could miss something, but it was generally pretty clear.  Not picking up the Styx water in the Realm of the Dead would be a dead end, but at some point you're going to check your spell book and go, "OH, SHOOT!" and then restore and not be too far from where you were.  Not grabbing the nightingale in the short ending is a little tougher to figure out if you go wrong, but still, you're not backtracking too much.  It's certainly a far cry from realizing at the very end of KQII that you had crossed that bridge one time too many when you first started.  (Even KQV which people badmouth for dead ends, wasn't too bad in that regard.  Like you're really not going to pick up Cedric or that crowbar?  Really?  And the game even added a POOIsonous snake to make sure you had everything you needed to go to the mountains and beyond without a dead end with Dink.  Still, that shows that they were learning and trying to fine-tune the gameplay.)

Regardless, my overall point remains the same.  There's trying to refine a concept and then there's changing the concept completely.  Adventure games seemed to stray too far from what their very nature was and I think that's what put the final nail in the coffin.

Offline Baggins

  • Read-Only
  • Magical Genie
  • *
  • Posts: 2554
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #36 on: July 31, 2011, 07:43:38 AM »
Actually the nature of dead ends really changed in KQ5 (though some might argue KQ4 for certain reasons). That game had alot of unique deaths that were only triggerable if you made wrong decisions. For example being killed in the woods by spiders, man eating plants, and or becoming lost! Didn't have all the stuff for the inn? Well that lead to a timed death!

I think it was also largely the first game to throw out warnings ahead of time for areas that might require more items (predating the catacombs warning).

KQ6 had a few puzzles were you could get stuck without the proper items much like the original KQ games. For example forgetting to get the mechanical nightingale before going into the castle on the short path! or if you forgot to talk to the mother ghost! Or forgot the skeleton key! There is at least two possible ways to get yourself stuck from even being able to enter the castle! With no way to die and just wander forever! Accidentally break the egg after burning the dress, or forgetting the Styx water!

Quote
Regardless, my overall point remains the same.  There's trying to refine a concept and then there's changing the concept completely.  Adventure games seemed to stray too far from what their very nature was and I think that's what put the final nail in the coffin.

This largely depends on the company, many companies didn't follow the Infocom and Sierra approach to adventure games. Quite a few companies such as Lucasarts had adventure games with few ways to die, and no intentional dead ends. It's safe to say each company defined their own views of what adventure games were early on, and rarely strayed from their own formats.

On an interesting side note, I learned that KQ7's single icon interface was apparently inspired by the streamlined menu system in Westwood studio's Legend of Kyrandia series. Again I'd agree that was a change for the worse!

Quote
And then after KQ7, it's as if they noticed the popularity of shooters, so they made Mask of Eternity and tried to act like it was still an adventure game.  Absolutely not!  Overcoming obstacles, trading with characters, and using your wits to travel and explore a new land to find a key to a magic door is an adventure game.  Jumping on tiles in a given order so that you can be given a key to open a door to kill skeletons is not an "adventure game puzzle."  They further altered what an adventure game was.  Or rather, they just made a first person shooter and called it an adventure game.

There is very little in KQ8 that can be called a first person shooter. If anyone calls it that they are showing the lack of knowledge of the game or understanding! Either that or using extreme hyperbole. Perhaps even going so far to be intentionally misleading!

The game is a hybrid game. If anything its bit more action-adventure genre (tomb raider), hack and slash genre (the combat focuses on swords not projectile weapons), and while you can use a single projectile weapon at a time, many of the enemies are immune to projectiles (so the hacking and the slashing is the weapon of choice). The combat style is point and click mouse clicking which takes from assorted RPG genres like Diablo series. It's also a bit like Quest for Glory in some ways (although alot more streamlined and simplified mechanics). On top of that it maintained the inventory puzzle interface of the previous KQ and other Sierra games, and the streamlined single cursor interface of KQ7. In many ways it has more in common with the 3-d Zelda action-adventure series, and no one claims OOT is a FPS.

Additonally while you can play in first person, the game actually controls better in 3rd person in most places. You also get some special attacks in third person you cannot access in first, certain jumping actions can only be made in the 3rd person. Also if you try to fight primarily in first person you probably will take alot more damage, as you can't really defend as well, or dodge attacks from multiple enemies. Plus the character changes appearance throughout the game, with new armor, and weapons graphics. These area only truly showed off in the 3rd person view mode. Jumping, backflips, etc is not indication of FPS genre (or any genre for that matter, except for maybe platformer, but KQ8 is not a platformer), and even KQ1 had jumping (although this has more in common with action-adventure games mentioned above)!

While I do admit that the addition of box, jumping and tile puzzles (the latter of actually are quite similar to the tile puzzle in KQ6) are a bit naff, they are aren't the sole type of puzzle in the game. The box puzzles are ripped out of Tomb Raider/Prince of Persia/Indiana Jones, even zelda style games, and even further back to early adventure games. On a side note, there is another 'adventure game' puzzle that many complain about in Adventure games, and that is the "maze' style puzzles, like Catacombs and the Labyrinth under Mordack's castle. Often cited as one of the top ten worst things in adventure game design! KQ8 had a couple of those types of areas as well...

BTW, its important to point out that block and tile-style puzzles are not traditionally puzzles one finds in First Person Shooters. FPS in general, especially the earliest ones, are not known for having puzzles, especially not those those two particular types of puzzles. With the exception of say Half-Life which took elements from Adventure game design in order to push itself outside of the mold of the standard FPS genre!

No, the box and tile puzzles are generally an aspect of adventure or action-adventure genres. Or part of their own genre if a mini-game ('boxxle'). You may not know this but block puzzles go back to Infocom adventure games, for example in Zork 3, in one of the 'mazes' in the game (yes the third dreaded adventure game puzzle design type) involved pushing walls around in certain order, to find the exit and secret items! Let's just say its maddening especially since you have to imagine what's going on! Tile-based puzzles appear in many adventure games as well (KQ6 and KQ8 are not alone), for example several of the early Indiana Jones adventures (last crusade, and Fate of Atlantis)! These are some of the most over used in adventure game puzzle design, and some of the earliest adventure puzzle types! Some of the later Zork games also had tile based puzzles/chess-style puzzles! Btw, look at Torrin's Passage for a tile jumping puzzles that are quite analogous to the KQ8 puzzles! Its in the lava world area. I'm hard pressed to think of any FPS that has tile puzzles (and box puzzles are something later FPS nicked from earlier adventure game genres).



As far as puzzles the game has more than most KQ games put together, it has more of the classic item/trade puzzles than KQ1, it adds additional physic based puzzles, some environmental puzzles. In several examples even weapons become traditional inventory style puzzles for influencing the environment! Cutting down a tree, freezing water, breaking locks, etc.

Remember that puzzle in KQ5 where you had to break a lock with a hammer? Well KQ8 has the same puzzle, just with a bigger hammer!

But ya, you point towards several of the puzzles in the game (definitely not all) can arguably described as 'fetch quests'. Quite a few puzzles in previous games were the same way. You were given an item, and then told how and where to use it by some character. This seemed to be worse in later games starting with KQ7. While not so bad in the first area the Desert (which can be tricky). Once out of the desert, much of the game devolves down to characters sending you on quests to find random items they need  (fetch quests)! Or they tell you exactly what you need to get past certain obstacles, thus sending you out to find the item, so you can use it the way they explained it. Again not every puzzle, but many of them!

Although I'd say KQ3 is just as bad, as you are pretty much told which items to 'fetch' for the spells in the manual, and how/where (as in environment) those spells are literally used. So nearly every puzzle in the game is 'spelled out' in the manual completely. There are very few puzzles that manual does not cover. So all that's left is to search for everything mentioned in the manual, so the 'fetching' occurs. That actually was one reason the game received much criticism in reviews back in the day!

You know those 'find ingredients" for spells from KQ3 also appears in KQ6, in KQ7 and KQ8. These are essentially a type of fetch quest!

One of the earliest and well received adventure games, "Mixed-Up Mother Goose" and it's sequel Mixed-Up Fairy Tales are made up of nothing but 'fetch quests" of the most simple kind (the few fetch quests in KQ8 are much more complicated)! Fetch Quests are not specifically elements of FPS either (but something nicked from the Adventure game genre).

Really the only thing the game added, that can't be traced back to older adventure games was the RPG-style 'combat' and 'action'. Perhaps the physics-based and environmental-puzzles are also a new addition to the game (although there are a few random examples in other games out there).  Although even still its not the first adventure game to have RPG or action elements, check out some other weird hybrids like Beyond Zork (RPG/text adventure) QFG (rpg/adventure/arcade), Inca series (flight/space combat sim/Adventure/shooter), and several of Dynamix's offerings (Heart of China and Rise of the Dragon). Physical based puzzles though rare do show up in occasional earlier game (just 3-d engine makes it more obvious).

I'd say one of the problems with the game was it tried to be everything to everyone! It might also be said, that one of its biggest flaws were most of the puzzles were based on too many overused and cliched adventure conventions from the graveyard of puzzle design! It simply wasn't original enough (which was a problem with many of the adventure games in the death period)!

http://www.postudios.com/blog/forum/index.php?topic=10923.0

On a related note, did you not notice that at that time a very traditional adventure game, Grim Fandango, pretty much bombed in relation other games at the time (though well received by the niche adventure game community)? Even KQ8 outsold it twice as much (and was one of the best selling 'adventure' games that year). That right there, should give you indication that as far as the market was concerned, Adventure games were not particurarly successful. Most companies were more concerned with more profitable genres.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2011, 08:22:59 AM by Baggins »
Well, ya, King's Quest is on Earth. Daventry is very old city from a long time ago. It's in ruins now and people aren't quite sure exactly where it used to be. There are some archaeologists searching through the ruins, they think they know its Daventry. But its somewhere on Earth."-Roberta Williams http://kingsquest.wikia.com/wiki/File:Daventryisearth.ogg

Offline DawsonJ

  • Great Oracle
  • *****
  • Posts: 689
  • Gender: Male
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #37 on: August 01, 2011, 03:23:31 AM »
Regarding KQ8: At a time when people weren't sure where adventure games would be going, they put a lot of faith in a so-far trusted series, King's Quest, with the hope of finding their previous gameplay enhanced. But Mask of Eternity was so different, so disconnected from the series, that people lost faith in KQ. Speaking of which... With all of the KQ Collections available, I have never seen MoE included in one of those.

Anyway, had MoE been a different franchise altogether, it would've been fine as a stand-alone game. Though the game, in my opinion, was just dark and soulless; not many people with distinguishable personalities, and more about personal survival than exploration and story. I prefer story over battling and grinding in games - that's why I got sick of Pokémon games, which are primarily just battling/grinding, and collecting, without much more than selfish desires of being a Master, with OCD.

Nowadays, RPGs and MMORPGs involve a lot more plot and exploration. I think RPG games kinda became the new adventure games - fetch quests and all. Now so many companies are releasing Point-and-Clicks, while others are releasing RPGs. I think we're in pretty good times right now. GameCube and PSX were awesome consoles for availing us to thick plots! PC/Mac games are starting to bring back some of the nostalgic feelings of past Sierra / LucasArts games. Heck, even King's Quest is coming back!

Offline Baggins

  • Read-Only
  • Magical Genie
  • *
  • Posts: 2554
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #38 on: August 01, 2011, 04:57:38 AM »
Quote
Regarding KQ8: At a time when people weren't sure where adventure games would be going, they put a lot of faith in a so-far trusted series, King's Quest, with the hope of finding their previous gameplay enhanced. But Mask of Eternity was so different, so disconnected from the series, that people lost faith in KQ. Speaking of which... With all of the KQ Collections available, I have never seen MoE included in one of those.
You are behind the times the most recent KQ collection over on GoG.com (which is split into three parts) includes it.  Its part of the third part of the collection, King's Quest 7+8.

http://www.gog.com/en/gamecard/king’s_quest_7_8

One word of warning the first part of Gog's collection known as King's Quest 1+2+3 leaves out the remake of KQ1. apparently because for this collection they wanted to showcase the history of the series as it evolved, not including the side projects/reboots (like the remake). They did the same thing for their Space Quest collection. But oddly they went with the 2006 collection for their Police Quest collection (which left out the original PQ1, go figure).

Also most of the previous collections were released long before Mask of Eternity's original release (two of the collections even include upcoming and making videos for KQ8), the earliest of the collections actually came out before KQ7 even.

Mask of Eternity was only left out of one single collection, the 2006 collection. The reason KQ8 wasn't released in the 2006 collection was largely due to incompatibility issues over a wide range of machines and operating systems, the GoG version fixes that. So ya, Mask of Eternity skipped one single collection, woop de doo! It's now available to all modern machines in the latest collection!

The 2006 collection was the only collection released after Mask of Eternity, long before GoG's release. That version also doesn't include KQ1AGI, the installation for KQ6Enhanced, or the latest version of KQ7. It was a rather cheap collection. It left out versions that were difficult to emulate when it was released, and no one knows why it left out the original KQ1. On a related note the companion collections for Space Quest, Police Quest and Leisure Suit Larry, also left out the originals for the first games in the series (putting the remakes only in instead), the 2006 LSL collection even left out Leisure Suit Larry 7 (apparently due to a censorship issue).

Quote
hough the game, in my opinion, was just dark and soulless; not many people with distinguishable personalities, and more about personal survival than exploration and story. I prefer story over battling and grinding in games - that's why I got sick of Pokémon games, which are primarily just battling/grinding, and collecting, without much more than selfish desires of being a Master, with OCD.

I consider that an essential aspect of the story being told, it's intentional atmosphere. It nods back to biblical, or medieval allegory tales; pilgrim's progress, paradise lost, dante's inferno, and epic mythology such as the Epic of Gilgamesh archetypes and other Babylonian mythology, and in her own words even Tolkien. These were  legends/myths/fairytales set Roberta decided to go with in the game. But once you get out of Daventry many whimsical and cute characters start appearing, at least in my opinion. These nod back to the earlier King's Quests.

Also it could have been worse there was a time when Roberta thought about having no enemies in the game, but most of the designers decided it made the world seem even more dark and souless!  No evidence of life at all because of the cataclysm!

I personally find KQ8 reminds me most of the remake of KQ1, which was largely a dark and lonely uninhabited forest, a kingdom in decline with Graham having to survive the dark creatures that roamed the forest, with only the only occasional encounter with a friendly being. Both games are about Heroes proving their knighthood to save the kingdom. Graham may already be a knight in the game, Connor evolves into the role by the end of the game. Connor more or less fills the role of the young Sir Graham, bringing the series full circle like an ouroboros.  Only KQ4 comes closer to the more isolated feeling in it's world and has a darker mood than the remake. KQ5 and KQ6 only have a few areas that seem isolated, lonely or dark.

But it's possible a little of Roberta's Phantasmagoria spirit rubbed off on the game!

It's pretty clear that Roberta only intended for this dark atmospheric story to only occur the one time, and she made hints that her version of KQ9 would have been a more chivolrous knightly romantic tale, with a possible love triangle between Rosella, Connor and Edgar (comedy and hilarity would likely have ensued).

« Last Edit: August 01, 2011, 07:09:48 AM by Baggins »
Well, ya, King's Quest is on Earth. Daventry is very old city from a long time ago. It's in ruins now and people aren't quite sure exactly where it used to be. There are some archaeologists searching through the ruins, they think they know its Daventry. But its somewhere on Earth."-Roberta Williams http://kingsquest.wikia.com/wiki/File:Daventryisearth.ogg

Offline darthkiwi

  • Staff
  • Powerful Wizard
  • ***
  • Posts: 958
  • Gender: Male
  • Imagine that I've written something witty here.
Re: When did the Adventure Genre begin to decline?
« Reply #39 on: August 01, 2011, 07:10:12 AM »
I agree totally with Baggins with regard to comparing KQ8 to a FPS: up until Half-Life, which came out in the same year as KQ8, FPSs had almost no story or puzzle elements to speak of. Doom's puzzles are no more complex than "find the blue key to unlock the blue door", and even GoldenEye, considered by many to be an excellent FPS, tells most of its story in between the actual gameplay, gameplay boiling down to "run around this map killing people, and complete whatever objective we've seen fit to give you". KQ8 shares more design with Ocarina of Time than with a FPS, as Baggins pointed out.

The reason I consider it a less well-made game than, say, KQ6 is not because of the design decisions, but simply the way they constructed their worlds after having made those decisions. For example, I think the Daventry world in KQ8 is actually a very well constructed environment with a lot of emotional power as a story. Connor enters the homes of his friends and talks to their statues, then takes their belongings, knowing they would have wanted him to. He fights monsters in a town he has always assumed would be a safe haven. He meets the wizard and is given a fetch quest, but this doesn't eclipse the gameplay since there is a lot to do elsewhere in Daventry: find new weapons and armour, find the rope and hook, explore the world and fill out the map, get into the castle, find the ghost of the dead knight and so on and so on. I felt that there was a lot of momentum to the story and to Connor's actions, and I felt like the RPG elements (experience points, weapons and armour) complemented the plot progression by giving the player an impression of steady improvement and success, not only by gathering more items but by becoming more skilled in battle.

Where it fell down, in my opinion, is in the worlds after Daventry, which are often labyrinthine (the Dimension of Death) and filled with monsters to fight rather than characters to interact with. In Daventry, I felt the combat was one element of many: an important element, but no more important than other adventure game elements like finding items. In the later worlds, where 90% of your interaction with the world is via combat, I think the cracks in the combat system started to show and the game became much weaker as a result, since worlds were often filled with monsters apparently because there was nothing else to fill them with.

If KQ8 had been a better game overall, I think its action-adventure formula could have rivalled other similar games, and provided a genre able to rival the FPS, or at least be financially viable. I don't think KQ8 was the decline of the series because it was a departure from the series - after all, you could say that the KQ5 interface was a departure from the interfaces of KQ1-4. Rather, I think KQ8 was a dip in the series' fortunes simply because it was a less well put together game, not because it was less loyal to the brand.
Prince of the Aquitaine. Duke of York.

Knight errant and consort to Her Grace the Empress Deloria of the Holy Roman Empire, Queene of all Albion and Princess Palatine.