So...what do you guys think the best way to approach this problem would be?
The small, contained, constantly reused environments are one of the primary weaknesses of Telltale's games, and the main reason I have so much trouble getting into their Sam & Max games (though Season 3 remedied this issue pretty well.) BttF is so far the absolutely most atrocious example of this feature making the game bland and boring. It worked alright with Tales of Monkey Island because of island hopping nature of a standard Monkey Island game, but I just can't see this approach working with King's Quest--at least not without significantly diverging from the "feel" of a traditional King's Quest game.
TSL has taken the episodic approach, but even their excuse for the lack of the ability to explore the entire game world is pretty contrived. However, I DO like the fact that once an area is open to you, it remains open, so that each episode has a larger area to explore than the last. This approach works alright in TSL partly because of the island nature of its setting. I couldn't see exploring the land of Daventry, for example, working nearly as well with the same type of contrived "you can't go here yet" limitations, though.
So what can Telltale do to marry the episodic game format with the freedom of exploration and large environments that are characteristic of most King's Quest games?
Thoughts? Comments? Concerns?