Knight Lore: Wikis

Advertisements
  
  

Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.

Encyclopedia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Knight Lore
Knight Lore cover.jpg
Amstrad CPC cover
Developer(s) Tim and Chris Stamper
Publisher(s) Ultimate Play The Game
Engine Filmation
Platform(s) ZX Spectrum
BBC Micro
Amstrad CPC
MSX
Famicom Disk System (Japan only)
Release date(s) 1984 (Spectrum)
1985 (Amstrad CPC)
Nov/Dec 1985 (MSX)[1]
Genre(s) Arcade adventure; Maze
Mode(s) Single player
Rating(s) N/A
Media Cassette (Spectrum, Amstrad, BBC, MSX)
Cartridge (MSX, Japan only)
Floppy disc (Famicom Disk System)
System requirements 48K RAM (Spectrum)
64K RAM (Amstrad CPC)
32K RAM (BBC Model B)
64K RAM (MSX)
16K RAM (MSX cartridge)
Input methods Keyboard, joystick
Keyboard only (BBC)

Knight Lore is a computer game developed and released by Ultimate Play The Game in 1984. The game is the third in the Sabreman series, following on from his adventures in Sabre Wulf and Underwurlde. Unlike the earlier games in the series it used Ultimate's filmation engine to achieve a 3D look using isometric projection.[2] In the game Sabreman has to find the ingredients for a magic potion. The game was written by Tim and Chris Stamper.

Knight Lore was regarded as a revolutionary title[3] and was the first of the "isometric adventure" genre, by displaying a detailed 3D world using isometric perspective [4]. It was extensively copied by other publishers, and was described as being the second most cloned piece of software after WordStar[5].

Contents

Plot

A man cursed to be a werewolf (spelt as "werewulf" in the game) travels to Knight Lore castle in the hope that the dying wizard, Melkhior can free him. He has only 40 days and nights to find a potion that will break the curse or he will remain a "werewulf" forever.

Gameplay

Again taking the role of Sabreman, the player must find the wizard Melkhior, then scour Knight Lore castle to retrieve the objects successively requested by his cauldron. Once collected, the objects must be returned to Melkhior, and dropped into the waiting cauldron. Successfully following all of the cauldron's requests within a forty day period frees Sabreman from the curse of lycanthropy cast upon him by the Wulf encountered in Sabre Wulf.

An ingame screenshot from the ZX Spectrum version. This is monochrome to avoid attribute clash.

The curse itself plays an important role in gameplay. While beginning the game as Sabreman, the player is periodically transformed into a werewulf as day turns into night (see the sun / moon dial in the bottom right of the screenshots below). At the point of transformation (either to, or from, the werewulf), Sabreman experiences a short, but humorously animated, seizure, and is vulnerable to enemies or hazards. Certain enemies (including Melkhior's cauldron itself) will attack Sabreman when a werewulf, making the timing of certain actions crucial.

In what was revolutionary for its time, the castle is presented as a series of isometric, flip-screen rooms. Negotiating many of these rooms requires good platform skills, especially since some platforms disappear or move when stepped on. In some rooms, objects such as tables or treasure chests (or even the objects collected for the cauldron), need to be used to reach carefully positioned goals (see screenshots below).

Aside from platform-hopping, Sabreman must avoid a series of enemies and hazards. Static beds of spikes and falling spiked metal balls are among the simplest hazards. Malevolent portcullis gates guard many thoroughfares, and are often accompanied by slow-moving, but lethal, guards. Faster moving enemies, such as ghosts and Melkhior's cauldron spirit, provide more dangerous company.

Production history

Tim Stamper suggested in an interview that Knight Lore was actually completed before its less technically-accomplished prequel Sabre Wulf[6]. However, they delayed its release because "the market wasn't ready for it" :

... we kept the Number One position for quite a while. It didn't make any difference to sales. They were still good products for the time. I think possibly Knight Lore was ahead of its time, and in looking back at the market now, there doesn't seem to have been any vast improvement in the two years since we left it. I don't know whether we could have made any more of an improvement.

However, this chronology has been disputed by an independent analysis of the source code routine used by Ultimate's games for reading keypresses. While this routine has been found to be optimised in all of Ultimate's games from Knight Lore onwards, the optimisation is not present in Sabre Wulf. Given Tim Stamper's chronology for Sabre Wulf, one would expect otherwise if it had truly been completed after Knight Lore[7].

Critical reception

Contemporary magazine review scores
Publication Score
Amstrad Action
95% (CPC version)[8]
CRASH
94% (Spectrum version)[9]
Your Spectrum
14 out of 15 (Spectrum version)[10]
Amtix
91% (CPC version)[11]
C&VG
9 out of 10 (Spectrum version)[12]
Sinclair User
9 out of 10 (Spectrum version)[13]

Knight Lore received an overwhelmingly positive reception from the gaming press at the time of time of its release. Amstrad Action described it as a "stunningly original concept" and praised its addictive gameplay, calling it "without doubt one of the best three games available on the Amstrad".[8] CRASH was equally enthusiastic, calling it "incredible, and a joy to play ... simply a great game" and describing the animation as "terrific from the smallest detail right through to Sabreman himself".[9] Your Sinclair magazine called it "one of the most important (and best) games ever written for the Speccy".[14]

Advertisements

Criticism

The game's reputation survives intact to this day and it still receives acclaim as one of the most important and advanced titles of its era.[4] GamesTM have hailed it as "seminal" and "revolutionary",[3] while Gamesmaster magazine's Adam Norton claims that "this slightly cryptic puzzle/platform adventure defined isometricism in the same way Super Mario 64 defined 3D".[15] X360 magazine have said Knight Lore is "one of the most successful and influential games of all time",[16] while Edge has described it as representing "the greatest single advance in the history of computer games".[17]

Conversions

A Japanese illustrator's take on the world of Knight Lore
  • Martin K. converted the game from ZX Spectrum to Sharp MZ-800 in 1989. It was a monochrome version.
  • In 2008 Krzysztof Dudek aka XXL made a version for Atari XL/XE. It is a conversion from the BBC Micro, the title screen was taken from the ZX Spectrum version (as Hi-Res graphics) and was colored with the G2F program. Music was also added to this conversion.
  • A conversion / remake of the game is being developed by Retrospec, a popular retro games developer.
  • Although Ultimate Play the Game were primarily associated with European software publication, Knight Lore did reach Japanese players in the form of a conversion on the Famicom Disk System (see cover art to the right). Though details of the port's developer are uncertain, its publisher was Jaleco, and it was released on December 19, 1986.
  • Manuel Pazos and Daniel Celemín made an MSX2 version in 2009, fixing bugs of the original and adding new features like a map, torch animation or different palettes for day and night. Knight Lore MSX2 video
  • A colourful remake for Windows PC by Jordi Martín Caballero (program) and Davit Masiá Coscollar (graphics) is available for free at Classic Retro Games

References

Title screen
  1. ^ Knight Lore, Alien 8 and Nightshade MSX pre-release promotional brochure, published by Ultimate Play The Game in October 1985. Available to view at World of Spectrum: [1]
  2. ^ "Looking For An Old Angle". Crash Magazine, Issue 51. Newsfield. http://www.crashonline.org.uk/51/runagain.htm. Retrieved 2006-10-03.  
  3. ^ a b "Ultimate Play The Game—Company Lookback". Retro Micro Games Action - The Best of gamesTM Retro Volume 1. Highbury Entertainment. 2006. pp. 25.  
  4. ^ a b Steven Collins. "Game Graphics During the 8-bit Computer Era". Computer Graphics Newsletters. SIGGRAPH. http://www.siggraph.org/publications/newsletter/v32n2/contributions/collins.html. Retrieved 2007-08-16.  
  5. ^ Krikke, J. (Jul/August 2000). "Axonometry: a matter of perspective". Computer Graphics and Applications, IEEE 20 (4): 7–11. doi:10.1109/38.851742.  
  6. ^ "The Best of British". Crash 51. Newsfield. http://www.crashonline.org.uk/51/ultimate.htm. Retrieved 2006-09-14.  
  7. ^ "On Filmation - Facts". http://retrospec.sgn.net/users/nwalker/filmation/main_intro_facts.html. Retrieved 2007-02-16.  
  8. ^ a b "Knight Lore". Amstrad Action (Future Publishing) (1): 56–57. October 1985.  
  9. ^ a b "Knight Lore". CRASH (Newsfield Publications) (12): 16. January 1985. http://www.crashonline.org.uk/12/knghtlr.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-17.  
  10. ^ "Joystick Jury". Your Spectrum (Sportscene Press) (12): 33. March 1985. http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~jg27paw4/yr12/yr12_27.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-17.  
  11. ^ Amtix, issue 1, page 102. Newsfield Publications, November 1985
  12. ^ Computer and Video Games, issue 39, page 28. EMAP, January 1985 Rating of 9/10 averaged from individual ratings of 10, 8, 9 and 9, for graphics, sound, value and playability respectively
  13. ^ Sinclair User, issue 35, page 23. EMAP, February 1985
  14. ^ Your Sinclair, issue 33, page 86. Dennis Publishing, September 1988
  15. ^ Gamesmaster, issue 191, page 41. Future Publishing, November 2007
  16. ^ XBOX360 Magazine supplemental: Rare - The Ultimate Story, page 9. Highbury Entertainment, 2005.
  17. ^ Edge File volume 1, page 257, Future Publishing, 2006. From an article originally published in Edge issue 12, 1994.

External links


Strategy wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From StrategyWiki, the free strategy guide and walkthrough wiki

Knight Lore
Box artwork for Knight Lore.
Developer(s) Tim and Chris Stamper
Publisher(s) Ultimate Play the Game, Jaleco (Japan)
Japanese title ナイト・ロアー ―魔城の狼男―
Release date(s)
Sinclair ZX Spectrum
1984
Amstrad CPC
1985
MSX
Nov/Dec, 1985
Famicom Disk System
Genre(s) Adventure
System(s) Famicom Disk System, MSX, Sinclair ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, BBC Mirco
Players 1

Knight Lore is a computer game developed and released by Ultimate Play The Game in 1984. The game is the third in the Sabreman series, following on from his adventures in Sabre Wulf and Underwurlde. Unlike the earlier games in the series it used Ultimate's filmation engine to achieve a 3D look using isometric projection. In the game Sabreman has to find the ingredients for a magic potion. The game was written by Tim and Chris Stamper, the brothers responsible for the later creation of Rare.

Knight Lore was regarded as a revolutionary title and was the first game in the "isometric adventure" genre, by displaying a detailed 3D world using isometric perspective. It was extensively copied by other publishers, and was described as being the second most cloned piece of software after WordStar. Knight Lore received an overwhelmingly positive reception from the gaming press at the time of time of its release. The game's reputation survives intact to this day and it still receives acclaim as one of the most important and advanced titles of its era.

Although Ultimate Play the Game were primarily associated with European software publication, Knight Lore did reach Japanese players in the form of a conversion for the Famicom Disk System. A subtitle was added, Mashiro no Ookamiotoko or "Evil Castle of the Werewolf". It was published by Jaleco, and released on December 19, 1986. It contains more than just 8 items, and uses an entirely different map system, made out of multiple stages.

Contents

Story

THE WEREWULF

My journey's end is near; as the last few ebbs of daylight dance fleetingly in the cooling twilight, and then suddenly dart off to chase the red sinking sun.

Behind me I feel night's dark icy fingers slither up long looming shadows, hiding behind large mounds and boulders, watching my every move... silently waiting... For days I have journeyed from the realms of the junglewulf to "KNIGHT LORE" castle to seek the old dying wizard and ask for his help to free me from this deathly curse... For countless nights I have slept chained to trees to keep my deathly curse at bay, but now I am here...

My footsteps echo around the damp mossy walls of the large chamber, as I enter through the open main gateway, colossal doors judder open in an untouched groaning symphony, beckoning me forward on my quest.

I sense the old wizard's gaze playing upon me, encapsulated within the labyrinth of traps and tests, to keep out all but the most persistent of unwanted guests who seek an audience with the great wizard MELKHIOR.

Suddenly a cool blue mist starts to ebb forth from the cracks in the ancient stone-work. As it does so it begins to take form and become a powerful swimming swirling vortex of energy. Over all the noise can be heard the chanting and singing of long forgotten tunes, all sung in a blur of forgetfulness.

THE MIST TUNES

THE WIZARD'S OLDER NOW THAN ALL
HIS HELP YOU SEEK WITHIN THIS WALL
FOR FORTY DAYS YOUR QUEST MAY LAST
LOCATE THE POTION, MAKE IT FAST
THIS HIDEOUS SPELL UPON YOUR SOUL
TO LOSE ITS HOLD MUST BE YOUR GOAL
BEWARE, THE TRAPS FROM HERE BEGIN
THE CAULDRON TELLS WHAT MUST GO IN
TO BREAK THE CURSE AND MAKE THE SPELL

TO SAVE YOURSELF AND MAKE YOU WELL.

The mist suddenly ceases its action and dissipates as quickly as it came.

I drop to the floor and with full knowledge of the old wizard I begin my quest. Dimly lit torches light the massive stone walls, their tired flickering flames never seeming to penetrate the inky darkness for more than a few feet... crystalline Merkyls, hideous Hobgoblins, stand frozen on huge monoliths, glittering in the cool trembling moonlight.

Encapsulated by the old wizard long ago, they await their fate in an un-ending task of defence, silent and stony. This is to be their last everlasting fate as guardians of KNIGHT LORE castle, until the ultimate death of the old sorcerer... The moon has risen quickly and in the fullness of its cool blue light, I become a Werewulf...

My fate is now all too clear, I have but forty days and forty nights to find the old wizard and seek his help and magical instruction, before my tormented soul becomes forever a werewulf.

Controls

Traditional

  • Image:Arcade-Stick-Left.png: Turn counter-clockwise ninety degrees.
  • Image:Arcade-Stick-Right.png: Turn clockwise ninety degrees.
  • Image:Arcade-Stick-Up.png: Walk forward in the current facing direction.
  • Image:Arcade-Stick-Down.png: Pick up an object, and cycle through the three available items in your inventory
  • Fire: Press the fire button to jump forward. Hold it down to jump farther.

Directional

  • Up dpad: Walk in the up-left direction.
  • Left dpad: Walk in the down-left direction.
  • Down dpad: Walk in the down-right direction.
  • Right dpad: Walk in the up-right direction.
  • B button: Press B to jump forward. Hold it down to jump farther.
  • A button: Press A to drop and stand on top of the item in your inventory.

Gameplay

Objective

Taking the role of Sabreman, the player must find the wizard Melkhior, then scour Knight Lore castle to retrieve the objects successively requested by his cauldron. Once collected, the objects must be returned to Melkhior, and dropped into the waiting cauldron. Successfully fulfilling all 14 of the cauldron's requests within a forty day period frees Sabreman from the curse of lycanthropy cast upon him by the Wulf encountered in Sabre Wulf.

The curse itself plays an important role in gameplay. While beginning the game as Sabreman, the player is periodically transformed into a werewulf as day turns into night (a sun / moon dial is shown in the bottom right corner of the screen). At the point of transformation (either to, or from, the werewulf), Sabreman experiences a short seizure, and is vulnerable to enemies or hazards. Certain enemies (including Melkhior's cauldron itself) will attack Sabreman when a werewulf, making the timing of certain actions crucial.

In what was revolutionary for its time, the castle is presented as a series of isometric, flip-screen rooms. Negotiating many of these rooms requires good platform skills, especially since some platforms disappear or move when stepped on. In some rooms, objects such as tables or treasure chests (or even the objects collected for the cauldron), need to be used to reach carefully positioned goals.

Aside from platform-hopping, Sabreman must avoid a series of enemies and hazards. Static beds of spikes and falling spiked metal balls are among the simplest hazards. Malevolent portcullis gates guard many thoroughfares, and are often accompanied by slow-moving, but lethal, guards. Faster moving enemies, such as ghosts and Melkhior's cauldron spirit, provide more dangerous company.

Map

Key

  • Each letter is the location of a particular item. Which item is determined somewhat randomly. See the item distribution list below.
  • The yellow "!" is the location of the wizard Melkhior and his magic cauldron, where you must bring the requested items. Do not enter this room as a werewulf.
  • The green "!"s are each a possible starting point, chosen at random.

Item distribution

Item 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
A Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore life.gif
B Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore life.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif
C Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore life.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif
D Image:Knight Lore life.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif
E Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore life.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif
F Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore life.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif
G Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore life.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif
H Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore life.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif

At the start each game, the items at locations A through H are assigned a different item. However, once you know where one item can be found, you can use the following table to determine the location of the rest. The numbers 1 through 8 are the different combinations of item locations. Of the eight item locations, only seven are items. The eighth location will have an extra life. So for example, if you happen to locate a grail at an A location, you will always be able to collect an extra life at a B location.

Cauldron requests

The cauldron always requests items in the same order. However, the starting point within the order is always random. For example, the first item that the cauldron requests may be a bottle. After the bottle, it may request a crystal ball, or a diamond. If the second request is a crystal ball, the third requiest will be the grail.

Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore grail.gif Image:Knight Lore bottle.gif Image:Knight Lore diamond.gif Image:Knight Lore crystal ball.gif Image:Knight Lore poison.gif Image:Knight Lore shoe.gif Image:Knight Lore cup.gif

Advertisements






Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address
Message