King's Quest V: Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder



King's Quest V is a point-and-click game. By moving the mouse to the top of the game screen, the toolbar becomes visible. Below is the toolbar for King's Quest V, released in King's Quest collections.

Left-clicking the mouse on the buttons will change the mouse cursor and allow the player to perform different actions. The left-most button is the WALK button, allowing the player to move the character any accessible on the screen or to move to another screen. It is also used to direct the sailing boat in the sea. The second button on the left is the "LOOK" button, allowing Graham to observe the environment in detail. The hand icon is the ACTION button, allowing the characters to perform tasks such as picking up objects, opening doors, pushing items and so forth. The face icon is to TALK and can be used on nearly every person and even some animals in the game. The grayed-out area is where the selected inventory item appears. This allows to quickly select the item, rather than having to enter the inventory screen. This comes in very handy during scenes such as the yeti attack and the final battle, where the player needs to be fast. Note that the player can also cycle through these icons by right-clicking the mouse.

The toolbar in the disk version of the game looks like the one below.

Here are some additional icons. The second on the left is the TRAVEL icon, which is used to travel longer distances without stopping and while avoiding obstacles. This icon has been removed from the collection version of King's Quest V. The floppy disk icon is to save or restore a game. In the collection version, this has been moved to the control panel (see below). The stop icon is when the player wants to pause the game. In the collection version, this is done by simple moving the mouse to the toolbar or by accessing the control panel. The control panel in the disk version therefore only shows the options to change volume, detail and speed settings.

Inventory screen

Click the bag icon in the game's toolbar to access the inventory panel.

By selecting the LOOK icon, you can observe the inventory items. With the hand icon, you perform an ACTION with the inventory item. This icon is actually only used once in the entire game, to open the pouch which the character finds in the witch's house. By clicking the arrow icon, you can select an inventory item. After selecting an item, click "OK" and the item will then appear in the game's toolbar (the grayed-out zone above). The item selection arrow is also the default function when the player enters the inventory screen. Click the question mark icon and then any of the inventory window buttons to get an on-game explanation about the button.

Control panel

Click the slider bar icon in the game's toolbar to access the game's control panel.

Here the player can save, restore, restart, quit or continue play the game. The player can also change speed, volume and detail settings. Unlike most other Sierra games with speech, there is no function to switch between speech and/or subtitles. Finally, the mountain icon provides the player with more information on Sierra products, Sierra contact details (no longer in use) and the game's version. The game score is also displayed in this screen (clearly this picture was taken at the start of the game).

Save often and a lot

There are many dead ends in King's Quest V, as well as many ways for the character to die. Often you may miss an item and not be able to trace back footsteps to acquire it. It is therefore strongly recommended to save frequently and use multiple saving slots!