Game 52: King's Quest V – An owl in need is an owl indeed

Written by TBD

King Graham of Daventry Journal Entry #5: "I've finally made it. Mordack's castle is just ahead and in it, my captured family. It was a long journey on water, sand and ice, and I nearly lost my friend, Cedric, along the way, but now we are here together and ready to face the dangers of the evil wizard's castle.

When I left off last time, I had just thrown my rope onto a branch but couldn't climb it.

My plan of rubbing beeswax on the rope didn't work. I spent 55 minutes backtracking and searching every screen for something I didn't find. Among other things, I decided there had to be more to the inn than a leg of lamb but despite my furious random clicking found nothing.

Perhaps a sign of my lack of trust in the game being fair to me, I also clicked on almost every pixel of the rope, thinking perhaps there's a small section of rope that is safe to climb. After attempting to use everything in my inventory, I found that the leg of lamb could be eaten and I got points for doing so. I thought maybe if I was stronger I could climb. One thing I also considered was that I was carrying too much weight. Cedric wouldn't take any of my items and I wondered if I needed to reload an even older saved game from before I bought the sled - maybe the sled was making me too heavy for the rope. I couldn't drop items, so couldn't solve my weight problem quickly.

It took me a while to realise it, but I was dead-ended. Like when I asked for assistance two posts ago, my problem was assuming background decoration where there was actually a clickable object.

While clicking on every part of the scene for the, let's say, 12th time, I found an outcropping to the right of the tree branch that had a different 'look' comment than the rest of the background. I reloaded an old game and tried throwing the rope at the outcropping instead of the branch.

While not totally unfair, this puzzle deliberately tried to trick me into wasting my time

This time I got warned about being hungry. I deliberately didn't eat because I wanted to see a death by starvation, which did happen a few screens later...

Come on Graham. A few more metres and you can slide the rest of the way

I reloaded and ate half of my lamb. Freshly satiated, I climbed the rope, Then I jumped over a few rocks, and, you guessed it, died many times by jumping on the wrong rocks.

I wonder if there's a way to tell which rocks are safe without dying

Then, and I'm sure some of you will be happy about this, Cedric got captured by wolves!

Caption contest!

Using my trusty sled, I slid down a toboggan slope which looked like fun. Then I checked out the cliff to see if I could add to my death tally.

I knew I shouldn't have turned the toymaker down when he offered the extended warranty

On the next screen I found an eagle. He was hungry and it was obvious what I should do. I gave him the rest of my lamb, which he thanked me for before flying off. I'm sure we'll meet again when he'll perform a trivial task for me. I also tried my pie to see if he had a sweet tooth (beak?) but I got less points for that so lamb seems to be the right choice.

This time it was my turn to be captured by wolves. The wolves worked for an ice queen, Queen Ice-abella. For some reason she'd captured us to kill us, rather than just having us killed before letting us into her throne room. Makes no sense to me, but perhaps that's why I've never gotten a job as an Ice Queen.

She told the wolves to kill me, and if I stand there and let them, they of course do what they were commanded to do.

The wolf on the left is called Sir Graywolf. The wolf on the right must be called Sir Alsograywolf

While the wolves were coming for me I tried using my harp. The Queen then realised that my ability to play a harp clearly meant that I also had the ability to kill a yeti, so sent me to kill a yeti for her.

I can't turn down the chance to help someone wearing a crown 

In one of the more ridiculous scenes in the game, I defeated the yeti by throwing a comedy custard pie at his face, which caused him to lose track of his location, and fall to his death.

About time someone apart from me fell off a cliff in this game

Of course, if I don't throw a pie at him, or try to throw it too late, the usual happens.

Help me, Yukon Cornelius. You're my only hope

I entered the Ice Queen's cave, and looked around. All crystals except one have the same narration when clicked on. Knowing that there had to be something useful in there, I quickly found the one crystal that I could touch, used my cobbler's hammer to break a piece off as a souvenir and went back to the Queen to give her the good news.

10 CAPs for anyone who hasn't played and correctly guesses which crystal is the useful one

After Isabella had Sir Greywolf show Cedric and I the way out of the mountains, I was captured by a two-headed Roc and put in a nest. Something was glinting in the nest as the egg slowly hatched. Clearly I was to be a baby roc's first meal. I grabbed the shiny object (a locket) before the egg hatched then my eagle friend picked me up and took me to a beach.

How about we save a lot of time and you just take me straight to Mordor, I mean Mordack
Later on, I reloaded to an earlier saved game to see what would have happened if I didn't give the hungry eagle some lamb earlier.

Can you smell what the Roc is cooking?

Back to the beach, I took an iron bar I found on the sand, then decided to go for a swim...

Where's David Hasselhoff when you need him

Okay, swimming was out, so I went to the boat I could see in the distance on the beach. That's a much safer way to travel on water...

There is absolutely no way to know the boat has a hole until it's too late

Simple enough. I use my beeswax on the boat (thanks Queen Beatrice) and now I'm sure there will be nothing to stop me safely crossing the ocean...

When will sea monsters learn that boats aren't digestible

I also found a third screen on the beach which contained a hermit's hut, but there was nothing to do there as the hermit was hard of hearing and couldn't hear what I was saying.

I quickly realised that the ocean was, much like the desert, a maze of sorts. Sea monsters eat you if you go to far in any direction. Fortunately it's a short and simple maze and I quickly found an island. Unfortunately, as soon as we arrived at the island, Cedric and I were captured by some harpies.

Is it a flock of harpies, or a murder of harpies? A gaggle of harpies perhaps?
The harpies discuss how delicious I'd be while I notice another shiny item in the grass. I take what turns out to be a fish hook, then play my harp, thinking that would soothe them. It didn't so much soothe them, but it brought out a competitive streak in them. One of them took my harp and the others followed her. Of course, if I didn't play the harp and just stood there, the usual happens...

Death by snoo-snoo

Leaving the screen, I came across the shattered body of a badly injured Cedric. I carried the poor owl back to the boat screen, where I found a conch shell, then got on the boat and returned to the beach.

Having Graham physically carry Cedric was a nice touch
Back at the beach, I tried talking to the hermit again, and this time gave him a conch shell as a hearing aid, which worked. He had a poultice that cured Cedric and also knew a friendly mermaid who led us to Mordack's island. I'm on the final stretch now and I can't go back so hopefully I haven't missed an item along the way.

Whoever holds the conch gets to speak

Just to see what would happen, I reloaded and ignored Cedric's body on the harpy screen, going to the hermit without him. I still got to Mordack's island, but I assume that would be another dead-end situation, as well as a cruel thing to do for an owl who's almost been helpful countless times already.

Mordack's Island

Session time: 2 hours 05 minutes
Total time: 11 hours 45 minutes

Session deaths: 10
Total deaths: 30

Pixels found so far: 5 (Silver coin, gold coin, locket, fish hook, conch shell)

Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: There’s a set of rules regarding spoilers and companion assist points. Please read it here before making any comments that could be considered a spoiler in any way. The short of it is that no points will be given for hints or spoilers given in advance of me requiring one. Please...try not to spoil any part of the game for me...unless I really obviously need the help...or I specifically request assistance. In this instance, I've not made any requests for assistance. Thanks!

Save Cedric
As an excuse to zoom in on a screenshot of a sick Cedric, I thought I'd remind you that anyone who mentions that they'll donate to an owl-related charity during the King's Quest V playthrough will get some bonus CAPs.

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