King’s Quest IV: The Perils of Rosella

About King’s Quest IV: The Perils of Rosella

The fourth game in Sierra’s famous King’s Quest series, released in 1988, is the very first adventure game with a female protagonist (hero). It is also one of the first games with a female hero across any game genre. The role taken on by the player is that of Princess Rosella, daughter of King Graham of Daventry.

While the graphics are dated by today’s standards, it was considered to be very good for it’s time. The game was also well received by critics, and it sold many copies.

There are some elements that make it a great educational game. There is a lot of reading – it is sort of like an interactive story book. It also requires you to type in the character’s actions, a feature that was lost as adventure games became point and click type games. It also requires problem solving skills to solve the puzzles. See also: are adventure games educational?

Age and difficulty: For children used to point and click games, it is quite challenging to have to type in commands, and there is no language processing. This means most typed commands are not understood, so players will need to figure out what works and what doesn’t. This can be a fun challenge, but also frustrating and difficult for children (especially younger children below age 10 or so). There is minimal violence, but the playable character Rosella can die in many different ways which may be disturbing – even though the deaths are not shown (e.g. an ogre taking the character away to be eaten). Near the end of the game, Rosella kills (somewhat accidentally ) the evil fairly Lolotte with a love arrow. This may be a bit disturbing for younger players.

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