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Telltale King's Quest timeline

posted by BagginsKQ on - last edited - Viewed by 4.6K users

For those keeping count, first announcement was exactly two years on February 17, 2013, and last confirmed information was given about 1 1/2 years ago on June 2011 (from 01/23/2013).

The last major production/development information was made in an interview on May 2011.

It has now been confirmed that the game was cancelled.


[*]February 17, 2011: Telltale's Steve Allison (SVP of marketing) announces several franchises at a press conference including Walking Dead, and Fables. Telltale announces that they have obtained a Sierra license, King's Quest to be the first game, other series to follow. King's Quest is thought to be a reboot.

[*]February 18, 2011: Telltale announces King's Quest in a blog post on the Telltale website. It mentions that Walking Dead will be released first, followed by fable (they were projecting for a Winter 2011, and a Q1 2012 release). King's Quest's release is not clear, but implied to be an undertermined point in the horizon, apparently post Fable. Mentions 'reboot'.

[*]February 19, 2011: Telltale adds King's Quest to the Telltale forum list for people to discuss the game. The first post is by Alan Johnson the Telltale Community Manager.
[*]March 14, 2011: Interview with Adventure gamer. Confirmed not to be a true reboot.

[*]June 7, 2011: E3, very little confirmed. It's not to be reboot, and will probably star Royal Family of Daventry. Roberta Williams was 'consulted'. Hints that future Sierra games would be after King's Quest, possibly Space Quest or others. Telltale games to be pushed back to 2012 release dates (this moves Walking Dead to 2012).
[*]September 11, 2011: Gaming Examiner interviews Alan Johson, who tells them that Telltale is working on King's Quest, but it won't be out for a long time.

[*]March 12, 2012: Fables is pushed back to Q3 2012 (pushing King's Quest further back).

[*]March 14, 2012: CEO Dan Connors makes a nod to wards King's Quest Briefly in an interview. He picked up King's Quest because he felt it was a classic IP, and would be similar to resurrecting other classic adventures like they did with Monkey Island. He mentions that they aren't focusing on it yet (article discusses that Walking Dead and Fables are the next priority).

[*]April 24, 2012: Walking Dead episode I is finally released (after being delayed since winter 2011).

[*]May 16, 2012: Dan Connors confirms, that Dave Grossman, and his group was starting work on King's Quest. It is mentioned that they were trying to put together the staff, and get it into production. They mention that they had talked to alot of people about it. Other than that he said they didn't have much to say about it yet. Still looks like they were looking for a post-Fables release. Walking Dead is their main focus at that point.

[*]June 2012:E3, mostly talk about Walking Dead, showing of Episode 2. No confirmed references to King's Quest, or much of anything else of importance. Not much on Fables either.

[*]July 6 2012: Walking Dead Season 2 Announced.

[*]November 20, 2012: Walking Dead Episode 5 released. No announcements on the release date of the next game series. Still believed to be Fables next.

[*]February 6, 2013: Telltale launches beta for new website and forums, that will ultimately replace the old website. There is currently no webpage for King's Quest, and no direct access to a King's Quest forum either. However, the forum still shows up through a hidden link (and is useable).

[*]February 12, 2013: It is announced that Fables game will be more of a tie-in, and won't be called Fables. It is looking more likely that it will be the next game released. Walking Dead Season 2, will be a future release (how far in the future is unknown). It is also mentioned that Telltale has many other projects they are working on at at the same time (but no specifics as to what these projects are, or when they will be announced). IGN appears to assume that this will include King's Quest. Fables was originally to be released in Q1 2012, got pushed back to Q3 2012, but was not released.

[*]February 17, 2013: Two year anniversary of when Telltale's King's Quest was first announced (nine months from the previous major announcement).

[*]March 1, 2013: Dan Connors states that they aren't ready to say anything about the King's Quest project yet, but will say something when they are ready to talk about it. Rock Paper Shotgun asked if there were anything beyond Fables and King's Quest down the pipeline, and Connors mentions that they have a couple of unannounced projects being sorted out. Fables and Walking Dead Season 2 are projected for 2013 releases.

[*]April 3, 2013: Steve Allison confirms that Telltale has since cancelled work on the franchise. The forum is still up, so far.

Note (miscellaneous):
We also know that this year in 2013 that Telltale is expanding in size, to make more games. No idea what they are expanding to make though.

Paul Trowe/Replay (3rd party)

[*]April 10, 2012: "The remaining issue, as with King’s Quest, would be licensing the games from owners Activision. Trowe explained that Activision had been a touch unrealistic when he first approached them. Activision told us that they wanted $500,000 up front,” he explained. “And greater than 50% revenue share for those properties. I told them ‘good luck on getting that’, because I don’t think anybody’s going to pay that fee. I can tell you that they changed their tune about six months after that.” But since then Space Quest has been licensed elsewhere, and Replay are currently in negotiations over getting the rights for themselves. “I want to say it’s looking good,” said Trowe, “but right now I’d give us 50/50.”

RPS: So also with King’s Quest, they’ve been uncharacteristically generous in allowing fan projects. Have you seen the project the Silver Lining?
Paul: The Silver Lining wasn’t available for sale…
RPS: That’s right, yes.
Paul:And in addition it wasn’t really a King’s Quest. In my opinion they did an injustice to the King’s Quest franchise.
RPS: That’s interesting, why do you think that?
Paul: I just don’t think it held true to Roberta’s vision, just like I don’t think the Leisure Suit Larrys that have come out after Al wasn’t involved held true to Al’s vision. And that’s why I refuse to work on a Leisure Suit Larry game if Al wasn’t involved. I refuse to work on a King’s Quest game if Roberta’s not involved.
RPS: Would Roberta be willing to be involved, she’s been out of the industry for a while hasn’t she?
Paul: I can’t speak for Roberta, but I can tell you that we’re currently talking to her and Ken.

[*]April 12, 2012: "I love the Sierra classics!! Can you bring back King's Quest, Space Quest, or Police Quest? Our good friends over at Tell Tale have licensed King's Quest from Activision. If we do our job right then maybe, just MAYBE we'll be able to partner with them and ruinite the Space Quest team, King's Quest team (go Roberta!!!!) and Police Quest team for re-makes or new versions of those (Space Quest 7 anybody?)."

[*]June 5, 2012: Trowe related Kickstarter sabotage controversy (false claims/smears about several other competing projects, and sockpuppetry). He later apologies. However it is unclear how much the duplicity affected any previous claims made before it was discovered by MixnMojo and others.

[*]April 1, 2013: “They had [the King's Quest rights], and we were going to license it from them to make the remakes. I wouldn’t do a King’s Quest without Roberta. [Telltale senior VP of publishing] Steve Allison told me that they have the rights but they don’t have the bandwidth.” Allison offered to look into sub-licensing King’s Quest out to Replay, but Trowe hit a dead end when he brought the conversation over to Activision. ”I talked to the guys at Activision and they were like, ‘No, we’re pulling it [from Telltale] because we’re going to do it ourselves.’

“Activision’s probably not going to give us the King’s Quest rights,” Trowe told us. “[Telltale] had it, and we were going to license it from them to make the remakes.” Telltale senior VP of publishing Steve Allison told Trowe that it was an issue of bandwidth; the studio behind 2012′s*The Walking Dead simply did not have the resources to handle*King’s Quest, what with a second season and the launch of*Fables both in the works.*

“Then I talked to the guys at Activision and they were like, ‘No, we’re pulling it because we’re going to do it ourselves,’” Trowe revealed. He doesn’t know what the publisher’s plans are for*King’s Quest, but they don’t seem to include either Telltale or Replay. We’ve reached out to Activision for comment and will update this post accordingly when we hear back. Be sure to check out our full interview with Trowe, and to head back here tomorrow for our extensive GDC chat with Telltale CEO Dan Connors."

Josh Mandel comments (3rd party)
[*]March 8, 2011: "Telltale and I have spoken a bit lately, but there's nothing more I can (or should) say about it! But I would love to be King Graham for Telltale, and I trust them completely with the property."
[*]Jan 19, 2013: Josh Mandel comments & Chat Log:
"And Activision would be foolish to say, "Here, we're renting you the license to King's Quest. Do nothing with it in perpetuity...Telltale seems to be going in another direction anyway. Walking Dead was a hugely popular license and a big success for them, I think. King's Quest would be a big step backwards, a far less well-known and far less popular license...I think it's been safely reported that Activision and/or the Sierra licenses (except Larry) are up for sale...they *had* the KQ license and did nothing with it, opting instead to pick up a license of a national television show that certainly didn't need Telltale's help."

63 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • @BagginsKQ said: One thing that has been a small niggle in the back of my mind is if it was originally delayed partly due to The Silver Lining. Let me explain, Activision might see TSl ad a kind of indirect competition to a new KQ game.

    That is a very good point. I had never considered that.

    I was thinking about this whole thing earlier. What has bothered me is the lack of respect shown by TTG to the KQ series and the downright insulting (at times) attitude when referring to the original KQ designers. I would feel much better if Telltale reps, whenever discussing their possible KQ plans, always made a point to praise the series. The sense I have gotten from them is that it seems like they see themselves as doing adventure gamers a favor by perhaps creating a new KQ, when in reality I think Telltale should feel fortunate to even have the opportunity to contribute to the legendary series. It's like, "King's Quest? Eh, we'll get to it when and if we get to it. Boy, didn't those games have inane puzzles? Ick. Now let's get back to discussing The Walking Dead..." I mean, it's not hard to see why many KQ fans would be distrustful of TTG in this regard.

    Look, I would rather Telltale make a new King's Quest, even if it weren't a true adventure game, rather than never have a new KQ. Ideally, I would want a new KQ (of course with the best graphics possible, etc) with plenty of opportunity for exploration and lots of fun, ingenious, logical puzzles, and if that means another developer besides Telltale, then great. Letting KQ stay dormant would be the worst of all possible scenarios and is not an acceptable option, as far as I'm concerned.

  • Personally I'd never put much stock into what a CEO says.

    I could quote Ken Williams "bashing" adventure games. Even discussing phasing them out completely.

    It you want a more trust worthy interviews you kind have to straight to the programmers and individual game developers themselves.

    CEOs don't necessarily see the big picture or the views of the programmers.

    I'm not saying the CEO is lieing just that maybe CEO's viewpoint may have very different ideals Or priorities than the game makers themselves.

  • The idea that Activision/Telltale would make special considerations for a fangame is pretty ludicrous. Telltale isn't making King's Quest. The only plausible explanation for the lack of cancellation announcement is that they are either looking into re-licensing the IP after their license expired, or more likely, that they are waiting until the opportune moment to announce the cancellation. Dan Connors said absolutely nothing in that statement. As has been pointed out, his statement was very carefully worded to put absolutely no positive spin on it, so as to not get people's hopes up. Telltale's King's Quest project is dead, mark my words. And thank God, too.

  • @BagginsKQ said: My post is 'positive'?

    I wouldn't be surprised if Walking Dead 2 gets delayed into 2014 at this rate, based on their history of delays.

    Actually, I was referring to Dan Connors' quote.

  • User Avatar Image
    Jennifer Moderator

    The Walking Dead Season Two is scheduled for Q3 2014, so it looks like it might not be the game they plan to release directly after Fables after all.

  • Sudden update:

    TWD Season 2 is set for late 2013:

    This sticks with TT's anticipated schedule: Fables, then TWD, then maybe King's Quest.

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    why would then even announce a cancellation? To make the 10 f us who keep coming here aware? No one else remembers or cares anymore.

  • @exo said: why would then even announce a cancellation? To make the 10 f us who keep coming here aware? No one else remembers or cares anymore.

    A lot more care than post on here.

    You could even say that most that post on here don't care themselves.

  • I've said it before and I'll say it again -- I'm pretty confident that whatever Telltale Games decides to do with King's Quest will feel right. In fact, pretty much the only reason I could imagine them NOT going forward with the project is if they don't feel like they're doing the property justice in some fundamental and unfixable way.

    Telltale has demonstrated repeatedly, with IPs as diverse as Strong Bad and Jurassic Park, that they will honor the spirit and style of the original property. Their dedication to nailing the look and feel of a license has been far more consistent than the quality of the finished products, IMO. Jurassic Park wasn't much of an adventure game but it looked and felt like one of the movies. Tales of Monkey Island didn't LOOK exactly like any one of the earlier games, but it definitely felt like the same universe and played like the classic series. I expect we'll get the same vibe from KQ.

    That said, I can also see value in separating King's Quest from the Fables tie-in marketing-wise -- now that The Walking Dead has been such a huge hit with a mainstream audience, it may be worth allowing some time between those series so that two very different "fairy tale universe adventure games" don't create confusion. It's been a long time since an adventure game has sold millions of copies, and Telltale has visibility and marketing reach they didn't have a year ago. The last thing anyone would want is clueless consumers complaining that this awful King's Question game has foul language, violence and sexual themes in it.

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