Superb, atmospheric music
Registration required for game
Must have all episodes install
Link to forum thread - http://www.reloaded.org/forum/index.php?showtopic=11277
Poor King Graham. His world is falling apart. His children (Rosella and Alexander) are cursed, and left comatose. He has desperately been searching The Green Isles for ingredients for a druid spell, that will let him enter their dreams, and save them. If that wasn't bad enough, his wife, Queen Valanice, has been acting strangely. She has already attempted to jump off the balcony! But why? King Graham finds it hard to accept that his wife would attempt to end her life this way. Is it the stress of worrying about their children that is causing her strange behaviour... or is it something else? Something more sinister?
So with both his children comatose, and his troubled wife now sleeping, Graham has to make a hard decision. Should he stay with Valanice, or should he continue on his quest to save Rosella and Alexander? It's not an easy choice to make! But Graham decides to carry on with his quest, leaving Valanice under the watchful eye of Captain Saladin. His magical scroll tells him he must find 4 more ingredients for the druid spell (he found 3 ingredients in the precious episode). His search for those ingredients take him all over the Green Isles, as well as his own doorstep. But his search also gives him an insight into his wife's tragic past. Is this what Valanice is dreaming? What will become of her? And of his children?
We've reached mid-point now. The Silver Lining Episode 3: My Only Love Sprung From My Only Hate is the 3rd game in the series. Just like the previous episodes, this game is entirely mouse-driven. A taskbar at top of the screen (move your mouse up there) allows you to interact with the game world, using icons for Walk, Look, Take, or Talk. If you find walking too slow, simply double-click to make Graham run. You also have access to your inventory though this taskbar (make sure you look at everything you are carrying in your inventory - you never know what clues will be revealed). You can also Save, Load, or Quit the game at any time via the taskbar. Game options are very customizable, allowing you to play full screen or windowed mode, subtitles on or off, etc. Even the narrator can be turned on or off (although I find her comments hilarious).
However, I have to warn you, this episode has added some frustrating arcade sequences, which in my opinion detract from the overall gameplay. Towards end of the game, you are forced to flee from some monsters, and what follows is a long series of arcade sequences. You are not able to save during these arcade sequences, although automatic save points are created for you. You are given an energy bar, and as the monsters attack, your energy drops. When your energy is gone completely, you die, and you are forced to start that sequence again. These sequences are quite tricky, so you are given infinite attempts, until you get it right.
The Silver Lining continues to impress us, with it's superb graphics, and The Land Of The Green Isles looks as stunning as ever! Flashback scenes are animated beautifully. So much attention-to-detail can be seen everywhere you look. Everything from the 'pretty' guillotine (in Chessboard Land), to treasures from previous KQ games (in the Pawn Shop) can't fail to impress. Items in your inventory are often animated, which is a lovely touch. Characters themselves move realistically, and show a variety of facial expressions. For example, their eyes blink, and look around, like you would expect any real person to. And their mouths move as they talk. All the characters (and there are many of them) casts wonderful shadows that move when they move. It's great to see Stick-In-The-Mud & Rotten Tomato. Long-time King's Quest lovers will recognise these unusual characters, and remember them with fondness. Arch Druid looks magnificent with his head dress, and Jollo's shoes with the curly toes are amazing! This episode also introduces us to Guardian of the Forest - an impressive beast indeed! We also meet the Dryad, who was drawn so beautifully, with all the green emeralds.
Other effects don't disappoint either. The reflection in the castle's main hall floor, for example, is just one of the things that I love. The magical scroll is very effective, as the ingredients are scored off as you find them. Hassan's boat bobs up and down in the water realistically. Stalls in the market are interesting, and very detailed. The mist drifting across Isle of the Mists makes it a very spooky place. And zodiac signs glowing in the Stone of Circle is also impressive. When talking to people, conversations choices are shows as topics at bottom of the screen. Simply click on a topic to discuss that subject.
MUSIC AND SOUND EFFECTS
Music and sound effects are also very impressive. The background music is wonderfully rich, and accompanies the game throughout, without distracting you from the game itself. The sound of the fountain in Market Square is lovely, and it makes me want to jump right in to the water. Sound of the blacksmith, hammering in the background is also very effective. But my favourite sound has to be the crying Druid woman's scream. It's incredibly ear-shattering. Literally! Just ask Graham (lol).
Voice acting is just right, with each character sounding just as I would expect them too. The narrator is one of my favourites, and she has some hilarious lines. Jollo the clown is kinda goofy-sounding, which matches his character perfectly. Stick-In-The-Mud & Rotten Tomato are hilarious! They are SO sarcastic, and I love the sarcastic tone in their voices. The female guard dog was another character I loved, and her voice acting was top-notch. I hope to see more of her in future episodes.
The Silver Lining Episode 3 is a wonderful game. The cutscenes delving into Valanice's past are heartbreaking, and add a lot to the game. The wide array of characters are fascinating (Hole In The Wall, and Stick-In-The-Mud & Rotten Tomato are my favourites), and stalls in Market Square are incredibly detailed, making me want to look round the place. The story & dialogue is top-notch, and the rich graphics are stunning. Music is beautiful, and a pleasure to listen to. Voice-casting is also very impressive, with each character sounding just right, with Dryad's silky-smooth voice, and Female Guard Dog's sharp tone being just two examples.
My main gripe with this episode, is the pointless arcade sequences. They are quite tricky, and there seems no way to skip it. It's quite irritating when you are killed, and have to start that sequence again. In my opinion, this section detracts from an otherwise superb adventure game. It should also be noted that you have to register at the Silver Lining website, and have the previous two episodes installed on your computer. Despite these gripes, I highly recommend The Silver Lining Episode 3. Any adventure fan, as well as King's Quest fans will enjoy it immensely.
Review by: Frodo
Safe for all ages
Windows XP, Vista, 7
512 MB Ram
(1GB for Vista & 7)