The Let's Play Archive

King's Quest IV

by DoubleNegative

Part 5

Hello and welcome back to King's Quest IV.

Last time we gave away a bag full of priceless diamonds to a very poor family. In exchange we got a weathered fishing pole. A good trade, no?

Our next destination is off in the ocean over to the left. But before we do that, we need to


: Eagerly, from the end of the pier, Rosella flings the baited line of the fishing pole into the ocean.

Five failed attempts later...

: Almost immediately, Rosella feels a sharp tug on the line! Something pulls and fights her line as she slowly reels it in. There it is! She has caught herself a fine fat fish.

Armed with our new fish, let's go for a swim. Be sure to save.

And here we have yet another screen where a hostile NPC can spawn that will kill you if it gets close. Here I was bragging on King's Quest 4 for not having this bullshit and it goes and makes a liar out of me.

In reality, I had to go back and forth several times to get the shark to show up. More often than not, the screen was empty, or had the other encounter on it. If the shark touches you, Rosella drowns and...

: You make a tasty morsel for that hungry shark!

So let's just skip ahead to the other shore. This little island is just on the other side of the screen the shark appeared on. This is where Genesta lives. It's a 3x3 grid, with Genesta's castle being in the middle square.

The island has a weird form of compression going on, where if you walk around the outside edge, it's 2x3. But if you go up from where Rosella is standing, you find the middle 3 squares.

It's a very pretty island, though.

Finally on the last beach square I check, we find what I've been looking for. This peacock has shed a feather.

>look ground

: Something catches Rosella's eye! Why, it's a beautiful peacock feather. She takes it.


: Rosella sees the azure ocean stretching in front of her as she stands on the beach of this marvelous island. Behind her, set amidst a beautiful garden, rises a splendid ivory tower.

With the feather in tow, we can now return to the mainland.

: Rosella decides to take a swim in the ocean to wake herself up.

: It doesn't work.

: Too tired to swim anymore, Rosella's body gives out as she joins Davey Jones in his locker.

Oh hey, a whale! Let's go investigate.

This screen. This fucking... this screen.


: Horrors! Rosella has been swallowed by a huge whale. This place stinks!

>look skeleton

: The skeleton of an unlucky man (let's call him James) rests atop the wreckage of a small boat.

>get bottle

>open bottle

: Rosella opens the glass bottle and retrieves the imprisoned note.

: Gee! There seems to be writing on the note!

This is, as far as I can tell, the only item in the game with a description.

>read note

: Anybody out there! I had a condor drop this bottle in the nearest ocean to beg for help with King's Quest I. Help me fight this fire-breathing dragon!
: I see a beautiful mermaid in King's Quest II, but she won't help me. Tell me what to do!
: Help me! I'm lost at sea in King's Quest III! I'm with a bunch of nasty pirates who want to feed me to the sharks! If you can, come quick!
: Help! I'm about to get blasted by evil Sariens in Space Quest! Anybody have a handy ray gun out there?
: Sludge Vohaul is holding me prisoner in Space Quest II! Help me out of this jam!
: Drug dealers are terrorizing the city of Lytton! I need a partner to help put away these bad guys in Police Quest!
: Help! The girls in Leisure-Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards are mighty uncooperative. Give me some help here, guys!
: I'm a little kid, and my name's Tommy. I'm having trouble with Old King Cole and Humpty Dumpty in Mixed-Up Mother Goose! Come and help me!
: Hey, I need help here! The wicked Horned King has had me thrown into his dungeon! If I don't get out of here, then evil will rule the world in The Black Cauldron!

Illuminating, but not helpful to us.


: The whale's throat and mouth are enormous! Huge teeth, a great tongue, and yes... even a large uvula. What's that, you say? Well, suffice it to say, it looks like a big punching bag and hangs down from the top of the throat. See, you learn something new every day!

Hmm I wonder if that's a hint.

>look boat

: There's nothing in the old boat. It didn't help James and it won't help you.

Around 4 and a half minutes after first entering the whale stomach, according to the VirtualDub timeline, Rosella finally dies. So you can't hang around here forever.

So if we want to get out of this hellhole, we need to do something to the whale's uvula.

There's a slight problem with that. In order to get to the uvula, we need to climb the whale's tongue.

The path shown in the gif is, as far as I'm aware, the only viable way to get to the top of the tongue.

Nidoking posted:

I always climb up the left side of the tongue, so I know it's possible. I'm pretty sure the paths are mirrored. I don't know why it would be easier to climb one side than the other. It's still a pretty garbage series of puzzles, though, and more of the "You can go anywhere you want, but you need to do these specific things in this specific order" that started to dominate Sierra games around this time.

Any deviations cause Rosella to fall down again. In fact, the gif shows the exact wrong thing to do as well. When you eventually do get to the top of the tongue, you sure as hell don't walk around. You fucking save so you don't have to do it again! Spoilers, I walk too far and save right as I'm about to fall off. So I have to climb back up yet again.

There is literally no way to know where the valid path is beyond blindly guessing and trying from there. You can also make quite a bit of progress from other spots, but they always end in failure. My trial run I was able to make it 75% across the tongue from the left side before running into a dead end everywhere I tried.

After falling I don't even want to know how many times, we're finally at the center of the tongue. So how do we get out?

>tickle uvula with feather

: Rosella frantically tickles the throat of the whale with the big peacock feather. She begins to feel a quiver under her feet, which quickly turns into a mighty tremble. Suddenly, she hears a thunderous AAAAACCCCHHHHOOOOOOOOO! and she is swept out of the whale's mouth, in a tremendous wave of ocean water!

I want to point out that the whale can and will show up as you are crossing the ocean over to Genesta's island. So if you see it and go investigate, you can wind up in its mouth with no way to escape.

: Again, Rosella finds herself swimming in the ocean.

Let's go to that island we can see due north.

In the last update, in the teaser bit at the end, I wasn't referring to the whale when I mentioned the "what the fuck Sierra" moment. It was this island.

>look island

: Rosella has found herself stranded upon a desert island. Also, it seems, have others before her. The small island is nothing more than a sand bar, decorated with two lonely palm trees... and various shipwrecks.

>look shipwreck

: It looks as if many an unlucky sailor has been stranded here. Rosella sees a glint coming from one of the wrecked boats on the beach.

This right here is the "what the fuck" moment. That little hint wasn't in the original, AGI, version of this game. Indeed, you had to use your psychic powers to guess that there were two items hidden on this screen.

>look glint

: Rosella sees a glint coming from inside the boat.

>look ground

: Rosella looks at the ground inside the wrecked boat. What is this? Why, it's a golden bridle! She picks it up and carries it with her.

Yet again, a member of Graham's family finds themselves in possession of a golden bridle.

>wear bridle

: You can't do that now.

>look bird

: A pelican visits you on this desert island.

Well, at least we have a bird friend. I wonder if he's hungry...

>throw fish to bird

: Rosella throws the stinky, dead fish to the pelican. Greedily, he catches it in his large bill. As he does so, she notices something shiny fall from his bill, onto the ground.

>look ground

: A shiny whistle lies on the ground. Rosella takes it.

: Rosella puts the shiny, silver whistle to her lips and forcefully blows into it, producing a lout TWEEEEEEEEEEET! To her astonishment, a friendly dolphin appears just off-shore and jabbers excitedly at her.

>look dolphin

: A bottle-nose dolphin pokes its nose out of the water and chatters noisily.

>talk to dolphin

: Rosella talks to the dolphin, and it chatters back.

>ride dolphin

The distance back to shore is functionally far enough that you would drown trying to swim back yourself. So, I hope you found the golden bridle on that island, because you ain't going back.

NEXT TIME: We deliver the unicorn to Lolotte

List of Points

+3 - Fishing
+2 - Big beautiful feather
+5 - Whale tickling
+3 - Clairvoyance
+4 - Pelican friend
+2 - Shiny whistle
+2 - Blew into whistle
+2 - Rode a dolphin



Register of Deaths

We're gonna need a bigger boat
Swimming while tired
Wasting away in a whale's mouth