The following is a collection of reviews of The Silver Lining from various sources, sorted by the episode. Where possible, links to reviews and quotes from reviewers are provided. Reviews with scores are listed first, with general text reviews listed second. In each section, all reviews are listed alphabetically.
- 1 Reception Overview
- 2 Episode 1: What is Decreed Must Be
- 3 Episode 2: Two Households
- 4 Episode 3: My Only Love Sprung From My Only Hate
- 5 Episode 4: ‘Tis in My Memory Locked. And You Yourself Shall Hold The Key Of It
The Silver Lining's early episodes received mixed reviews, while later episodes received improved reviews. MobyGames and metacritic, two third party review organizations, have scores listed as mixed or average based on an unpublished weighted average of the listed reviews. MobyGames has scores listed for Episodes 1 through 3, while metacritic only has a score for Episode 1. The graphics, music, story, nostalgic feelings, and free cost to play received praise. The criticism revolved around a short play time and lack of puzzles. The voice acting and narrator received both high and low praise, as reviewers either seemed to love or hate these features.
The first episode received a lot of interest, and by July 19th 2010 (nine days after the initial release) Episode 1 had been downloaded approximately 23,000 times. MobyGames lists a critic score of 68 based on eight reviews, and metacritic lists a critic score of 66 based on five reviews. The scores from MobyGames and metacritic fall into the mixed or average category.
MobyGames listed a score of 73 based on a weighted average of six reviews. The score from MobyGames falls into the mixed or average category. There is no ranking on metacritic.
MobyGames listed a score of 67 based on a weighted average of five reviews. The score from MobyGames falls into the mixed or average category. There is no score listed on metacritic.
There is currently no listed scoring on MobyGames or metacritic.
Episode 1: What is Decreed Must Be
- Adrenaline Vault - 3/5
- My biggest gripe is with the narrator character. She can be quite annoying, and is often guilty of breaking the fourth wall...a profoundly bad idea . . . Another problem is pathfinding . . . Every puzzle is simple to the point of being trivial, and you can expect anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes of gameplay, depending on how much you explore. Of course, since we’re dealing with just the introduction to the story, both length and difficulty should be taken in context. . . . All in all, the worth of The Silver Lining is tremendous despite its shortcomings. Its nostalgic and sentimental value is first on the list, along with its testament to the ability of fans to resurrect what they truly love. The symbolic meaning is there as well, since this game will always serve as a reminder of how gamers can stand up to major publishers and emerge victorious. The game’s own merit is not to be dismissed either, especially considering that it was made by people with no previous development experience. Finally, the return on your investment is overwhelming, since TSL costs exactly zero dollars and zero cents. Go and download it right now.
- Adventure Lantern - 3.5/5
- Colony of Gamers - 3/5
- What's Hot: King’s Quest is finally resurrected with everything but the name; it’s free. What's Not: Episode is way too short; Narrator and Graham break the fourth wall constantly; graphics are dated, but the game has been developed on and off for 10 years. . . it is a good first step and a positive move forward for a long dead series, but an awfully short one. . . . The episode ends rather abruptly. . . It literally took me under an hour and maybe under 30 minutes to get through this episode even with the long opening CGI (not the best, but it conveys the story) at the beginning and the CGI at the end of the episode. This is probably the most disappointing thing about this release. I was really getting into the game when it stopped, I could easily look beyond the sub-par graphics and see this as a natural progression of the KQ story. . . . Now I have read interviews with the developers that say that this episode is the shortest and the others are far longer. . . You also have to remember that this whole game will be released freely on the game’s site, so I really can’t complain how short this is. If I or you were paying to play this game, we’d all probably be pretty pissed by how short it is. I think the game has a lot of promise. . . The graphics are okay and the animations are mostly fluid with some janky sections here and there. . . . The sound is also okay, although most of the voiceover talent is bad. . . . Some of the voice acting is badly executed, but some of it is actually good from Graham’s voice actor in particular. The Narrator can be good and bad and both she and Graham break the fourth wall regularly. Luckily the Narrator’s voice can be turned off because sometimes she delivers a line correctly and sometimes she is just a bit too sarcastic or “fake” with it. . . . Remember, this and the rest of the episodes are free, so at least try it out no matter how short this episode is. . . . A woefully short opening episode. . . It’s tough to not tell you to get it since it is free, but I certainly hope the upcoming episodes are far longer than this one is.
- Cheats Command Central - 3.5/5, good
- If you’ve never played King’s Quest before, don’t bother. Everything about The Silver Lining looks and feels dated, and fans of modern games will find it needlessly clunky and frustrating. . . . The simple act of moving your character by clicking your destination feels odd and doesn’t always work. . . some updated controls would have been nice. In terms of modern-era polish, the graphics and sound don’t fare much better. . . . the graphics here are fully 3-D. . . like those in Mask of Eternity, they look like they came out in 1998, especially the terrible animations. The cutscenes showed up with lots of visual glitches on our PC, with hiccups and screen-tearing. . . There isn’t much detail to the in-game images either, especially when compared with the textures that many modern games include. . . .The quality of the voiceovers is incredibly inconsistent. . . Many lines are delivered awkwardly enough to stand out, and there’s a ton of dialogue here, so plan on cringing a lot. . . . Also, the reason not many companies make games like this anymore is that they’re pretty boring. . . . Despite these problems, however, longtime fans will want to give it a shot. If you start with an appreciation of King’s Quest, not only is The Silver Lining free, but it’s worthwhile in all sorts of ways. . . . Clocking in at about an hour, with most of that time being taken up by cutscenes, the game feels more than a little sparse. There’s really only one puzzle in the whole episode, after which you sail between a few islands, watching cutscenes. . . Though the world feels big and open, most of the paths are blocked, making the experience linear. If Activision were charging people to play this game, we’d denounce the entire project as a rip-off. But as far as we can tell, Episode 1 is not really meant to be a full experience in itself. If you see it as a demo, or an introduction to a larger and more ambitious work, it holds a lot of promise. For one thing, the sheer attention to detail is impressive. . . . the narrator tells you what your character is thinking. Touch a suit of armor, and the narrator notes that it’s too heavy for you to wear. (Yes, she sounds like she’s talking to a child, but we already admitted the voiceover work was terrible, right?) . . . Even the sound has its good side, at least if you ignore the voiceovers and concentrate on the music. . . . Again, this game feels dated, and there’s really not a whole lot to this first episode. . . Episode 1 is far from a masterpiece, but it could be the prelude to one. And as far as price goes, you can’t beat free.
- Family Friendly Gaming - 74/100
- Keeping in mind that this game was essentially created by fans for fans, the quality of the graphics found within is impressive. . . . Though the graphics are definitely not what one would expect from a professionally created retail product, they are certainly better than I would have anticipated from an independently created fan game. . . . The cinematics are done well and draw you into the story. The graphics within the game are a bit rough around the edges but are still light years ahead of what was used in the original series making for a nostalgic experience with a little spit and polish. . . . The Silver Lining’s dialog is entirely done by voice acting. Another impressive accomplishment when you consider that this is not a professionally produced game. I will say, however, that some of the voice acting is well below par even for an indie game. The narration is a bit long winded and though the narrator means well, there are often far too many details expressed about any given place or object. . . . The music in the game is done well and suits the period in which the game takes place. The ambient sounds are also appropriate and are not overwhelming. Phoenix has done a great job of setting the mood for the episode. . . . On the bright side this episode is free making it a good value no matter how you cut it. . . . I found this game to be very anti-climactic. Just when you think you may actually get to control your character again, the credits roll and the episode is over. I am not exaggerating when I say that even mildly experienced adventure gamers can expect to get 15 to 20 minutes of actual gameplay out of this episode. . . . Fans of the series will appreciate the loyalty to the original King’s Quest tradition. . . but will be sorely disappointed by the amount of gameplay found here.
- Hardy Dev - 3/5
- . . . it indeed looks splendid in this version - arguably the best-looking King’s Quest ever. . . . Voice acting is of excellent quality, rain and wind effects build an impressive atmosphere together with the music, especially the soothing but catchy tunes you hear in the palace. . . . a plethora of amusing descriptions, conversations and interactions. . . . A couple of weaker animations (like Graham’s jerky walk) don’t ruin the impressive overall effect one bit. . . . Let’s now have a look at the real weaker side of things, as without doubt there is such. The main disappointment comes from the fact that the actual playing time of this first episode takes about 15 minutes and has only one real puzzle to solve (a simple inventory-based one), the remaining 20-30 minutes are all cutscenes – very good looking, but also throwing a huge amount of dialogs at the player with little clear plot development. The following chapters promise to offer much more, but as far as we know the second one is still a couple months away. . . . Can one really evaluate The Silver Lining experience by this short Prologue, I asked myself? And I definitely hope that what follows will surpass it by far and become a full-fledged adventure game – even if it should be only medium-sized with all-chapters-combined. However, What is Decreed Must Be has enough meat to it to be judged as a production worth playing with, if only for bringing the magical world of KQ to life again with an all new look. Also, for pushing the boundaries of how impressive can an indie, freeware adventure game look like.
- Just Adventure - B, superior
- Everything seemed so familiar, but strangely different. That is due in part to everything being rendered in 3D. The creators took great pains to plan their shots and camera movements in cut scenes, which you’ll see a lot of in this chapter. . . . Fans of the past games, especially KQ6, will have a treat exploring the Green Isles in 3D. . . . Unfortunately, the first chapter is more exposition than game. There is only one thing I’d call a puzzle; otherwise it’s just walking from one cut scene to the next, like an interactive story. It’s nice to explore and it’s nice to talk to people, but I was left wondering where the rest was. The start cut scene, while beautifully done, left some plot points to be desired. Why are Rosella and Edgar getting married at the Green Isles instead of in Daventry (Rosella’s Home) or Tamir (Edgar’s home)? Since the opening scene had no voice, I had to guess whose wedding I was watching...Rosella and Alexander are placed side by side in the same bed, holding hands. It was a creepy decision. I was able to put those issues aside in order to focus on exploring the Green Isles as Graham, which is very cool. . . . It’s hard to give a full review of the first part of a five-part game.
- Honestgamers.com - 5/10, average
- That The Silver Lining is a fan-made game is clearly reflected in the rough edges and lack of polish that simply wouldn't pass muster in a studio release. It's more technologically advanced than any of the original King's Quest games. . . but actually comes off feeling rather more primitive. . . . Visually, the game is very sparse and while the soundtrack is impressive, the voice acting is noticeably uneven . . . . The game is technically solid but, like everything else in the game, a little rough-hewn. It runs flawlessly but the loading times between screens seem a bit lengthy given their relative dearth of content and occasional bits of syntactical wonkiness pop up here and there in the writing. Navigating corners can be problematic; King Graham, the central character, has an annoying habit of getting hung up. . . . What is a problem, however, is the lack of actual gameplay. What Is Decreed Must Be is less a game than a cutscene that requires you to click every now and then in order to progress it. . . . To be fair, this is only the first of five planned chapters. A certain amount of setup is to be expected, yet very little useful "pre-game action" actually takes place. . . . What Is Decreed Must Be is also liberally salted with cutesy remarks and asides that break the fourth wall. . . . How well this works is largely a matter of personal taste and, like everything else, it may appeal to fans, but I found it distracting and counter-immersive. . . . As a loving fan service, there's quite a bit here to like. References to past games abound and seeing Graham don the old red-and-blue and hit the trail once more has an undeniably romantic appeal. But on its own merits as a game, it stumbles rather badly. There's little to see and less to do. To be perfectly frank, I expected a more polished experience from a game that spent a decade in development. I'm hopeful that future chapters will have more to offer, and since it's free there's no reason not to give this one a go if you're curious.
- Impulse Gamer - 7.5/10
- If you are a fan of King’s Quest, this fan-created continuation will not let you down. Aimed at King’s Quest connoisseurs, if you will, this game includes nice references to the story line that it follows. It also is fun in the nostalgic jokes that it jabs at you, the player, and even at Graham, the hero. . . . Though the storyline is repetitive and cliché, the game is actually not bad. The soundtrack is beautiful. The music seemed to match the scene and the feeling each time it started to play. On top of that, the voice-over actors were well cast and their performances seemed spot-on. The sound effects. . . also sounded very realistic. Overall, the audio in this game would impress me even if it were a full-length big budget game. . . . The characters though blocky, are very well drawn and charming. A similar statement can be made about the settings you will travel, too. The items and buildings seem well placed and rendered. The cinematic scenes play often and are always nicely animated. Graphics are definitely not a letdown. . . . Trying to navigate King Graham to the right locations sometimes got annoying. Much like the original King's Quest games, the narrator will poke fun at you for trying to speak to inanimate objects. . . . Careful, though, you will be cleverly scolded for trying to take what is not yours. . . . Take it for what it is. It is a fan-created game. . . . This is definitely not a shoddy title. . . . It is very short, with absolutely no replay value, and it hardly compares in difficulty to its predecessors. Regardless of all that, this game is worth a download. The Silver Lining is a very pleasant surprise to what you would expect from a free, fan-created game.
- metacritic - 66/100
- Score is based on 5 critics (75, 75, 70, 70, 25) using a weighted average
- MobyGames - Critic score 68/100, user score 3.5/5
- Critic store is based on 8 reviews using a weighted average
- User score is 3.5/5 based on 5 reviews
- Asian Girl Gamer
- The world looks better than what Telltale has done for Sam and Max. The script is professionally written and the voice-acting professional and crisp - even the narrator is brought to life by a new female voice and some of the jokes, while contrived, are at least somewhat funny feeding off nostalgia of old King's Quest games . . . The Silver Lining is worth every minute of your time.
- Captain D's Gaming Blog
- The graphics are very good, bringing King’s Quest into the 3D world while somehow keeping the essential atmosphere of the original games. Some of the animation is quite jerky but otherwise it’s very impressive visually. The music is very good, voice-acting too is good quality. I’m not entirely convinced that having descriptions narrated instead of shown as text is a great idea, but both the characters’ dialogue and cheesy jokes in the narration are done in true King’s Quest style. The puzzle element is not really something I can comment on yet, as the game make-up is 80% story, 15% exploration and only 5% puzzle.
- Classic Game Room - Note: dead link
- Once you start playing, it will not take long for nostalgia to set in. The developers did not get the license to use the King’s Quest name, but apart from that, this is a true sequel to the classics in every sense. . . . The story is presented with great quality writing and voice acting. . . . the graphics look very dated. I don't want to bash it too much since this is a fan-created game. . . . I think the game could have looked much better if they had made it in 2D instead of this very 1999-ish 3D. For what it is worth, the graphics look okay though. . . . I enjoyed the time I spent playing The Silver Lining a whole lot, but the problem is that this was a very short time. . . even by episodic game standards, and there was only one simple puzzle to solve in the entire episode. But as a showpiece for things to come, this was a great experience and since it's free there's no reason to complain. . . . If you like adventure games, you should go get this game right now.
- G4 Website
- . . . extremely short first free episode . . . It’s tough to say whether The Silver Lining has been worth the wait based on this first chunk, because after an hour, it’s over. When the credits roll, you’ve only taken Graham from the castle onto a boat. That’s it. Although the world seems expansive and extremely promising, it isn’t: locked doors in the castle prevent you from exploring, lightning strikes will knock down trees and block paths, and storms will flare up to point the only way you can go while aboard your ship. Did we really wait a decade to be boxed in? . . . The fans at Phoenix should be high-fived for their tenacity to give King’s Quest a proper sendoff... The walking and lip-flapping animations are creepy. Some of the voice acting sounds like it was rendered from Sound Blaster-era text-to-speech software. Then there’s the huffy female narrator, whose minute-long lectures make a strong case for returning to the genre’s text-based era. . . . And while the creators might be steeped in King’s Quest mythos, these guys are not master storytellers. . . . In the midst of these shortcomings, tiny details like Sierra-point-like sound effects for picking up items remind players they’re in the hands of people who genuinely love the series. . . . So far, The Silver Lining is more intriguing as a legal precedent than an adventure game. It’s defiantly old-school in its persnickety mouse-clicking controls and takes its sweet time setting up the remaining story. But as it is, navigating a single puzzle and a handful of screens will only whet players’ appetites for what’s to come -- not reward them.
- Visually speaking this is a relatively primitive game; it’s in full 3D, but the visuals are clearly not as advanced and polished as a high-budget retail release would have. This is balanced out by most characters and environments having a lot of detail to them however, so while the result may be underwhelming it is never ugly, and most areas are interesting to explore. The voice acting is a varied lot, with some performances sounding fairly close to the original character or doing a good job regardless, while others are decent... and the absolute worst of them are at least tolerable. The music on the other hand is pretty good all around, with several pieces fitting the ’soft epic’ motif of the King’s Quest series. It’s also worth noting that many characters and locations are immediately recognizable, and this is coming from someone who has only played a few games in the series so long-time fans should be pleased. . . . While The Silver Lining is doing pretty well for itself so far, there are a few issues. The most significant is Graham’s pathfinding behavior. . . Also noteworthy is that Episode 1 is very short, lasting perhaps an hour and a half or two hours, and the overwhelming majority of it is spent watching story cutscenes. There are only a few places to explore and a mere handful of puzzles to solve, which was definitely surprising. A more apt name might have been "Episode 0: Prologue and Tutorial". . . It’s the sort of thing that would be upsetting if this were a paid product, but as a free teaser to a free fan sequel it’s far more easily forgiven, and the developers have commented that the other episodes will indeed be longer and more involving. . . .To King’s Quest fans, or even those curious about the series to whatever extent, this ’teaser episode’ shows a lot of promise. It’s clear that the developers have all of the framework for a good King’s Quest game, and it’s equally clear that this is a labor of love. If you go in with realistic expectations, knowing that this episode is meant to build interest for the rest of the set and get players introduced to the story, then you’ll probably be quite happy after you check this out. The potential is there, so here’s hoping the rest of The Silver Lining builds on an excellent start!
- Games Radar
- Clearly a lot of fan-love has been poured into every aspect of the game, and the game’s production values certainly approach the quality you’d expect from a professionally made King’s Quest sequel. . . . The game’s presentation (both in the music and the voice acting) is completely melodramatic, and yet somehow still kind of joyless. Even the narrator, who traditionally provides all the deadpan fourth-wall-breaking humor that makes clicking on random stuff in adventure games so much fun, is voiced less like a straight (wo)man to your zany antics and more like a nanny scolding you for wasting her time. . . . At only about a solid hour of play time, Episode 1 isn’t really so much a standalone “episode” as much as it is a glorified demo. Right in the middle of a quest, just when things are getting interesting, the episode abruptly ends. Before that, you’ll explore a handful of locations, get a few items and use them to solve one, maybe two puzzles. . . . Most of the experience in TSL involves exploring the locations and watching the cutscenes, all professionally and artfully crafted. Honestly though, there’s not really much of a game there just yet. . . . But hey, it’s pretty, it’s free, and it has a ton of promise. Why look a gift horse in the mouth? Give it a try, if only to be wowed by just how dedicated and talented these fans/developers are.
- The voice work in Episode 1 is...pretty bad. Graham and the supporting cast are lifeless and stale, but you can forgive them; the narrator, you can not . . . . Silver Lining: Episode 1's movement is among the worst you'll encounter in the genre. . . . While it should take you around ninety minutes to complete the episode, you won't solve a single puzzle in that time, and will pick up around three objects. Isn't this an adventure game? . . . It's also free, so it's not like any of you will be burnt financially by playing it. For their accomplishments in staving off defeat - and really, it's a great story - Phoenix Online deserve a lot of credit.
- National Examiner
- The Silver Lining is a loving, carefully crafted amateur, fan-based effort. Unfortunately, it shows. A lot. . . . The game clearly reveres its inspirations and we admire the amateur efforts that brought it to fruition. The music is certainly well done, and the game successfully conveys the innocence and naive charm of adventure games made twenty years ago. . . . Unfortunately, the game also fails to add even modest gameplay improvements—or even much of a game. The 3D engine and graphics are adequate if a little ugly, and the game doesn't employ a context-sensitive cursor, instead requiring you to manually switch between . . . cursors. . . . But the biggest problem with The Silver Lining is that it's an adventure game without much of a game or any puzzles. The actual game is nowhere to be found, and it boils down to about five very simple "puzzles" (which require no actual puzzle-solving) and about thirty minutes of long, dull and poorly written cut-scenes. The voice acting, some of which is done by off-Broadway actors, ranges from capable (the actors, most likely) to cut-rate (random fans probably). . . . Unfortunately, despite the fact that the game is free, The Silver Lining serves as little more than a very long—and not very fun—mostly non-interactive, somewhat nostalgic prologue that drags you like a fish on a hook through the entire "game". . . . If you're looking for the cute, charming writing or puzzle solving that made the original games so memorable, you won't find it here. At least not yet. However, with four more episodes to go, we sincerely hope Phoenix Online Studios manages to create the game they are striving for.
- Project COE Gaming News Galore
- Overall: Approach it with caution.
- The Great: . . . After all these years, it’s fantastic to have a new King’s Quest. . . The good: . . .You can do anything with the proper effort. Major credit must go out to the developers, Phoenix Online, because they’ve proven that the impossible is possible with enough determination. Congratulations guys; you have accomplished your dream. The Bad: Technically-challenged. While I love Phoenix Online’s work, the technical aspects are an unfortunate mess. The audio is bland and boring, the animations are stiff, and look dated. I understand the ten year length of the project, but our standards increase as time moves along. This is an adventure game, right? That’s the question I kept asking as the next NPC started a conversation. That’s essentially what you’re playing: a conversation game. There are no puzzles, only a handful of objects to collect, and nothing else. You can finish the game in less than 40 minutes, but listening to everyone extends that closer to 90. The heart is missing; there’s almost no adventure to be found in this “adventure” game. . . . I didn’t want to include an “ugly” section; that would be mean. . . . As a game, SL is really dull, and should only be grabbed by those interested or long-time fans. I can’t stamp it as avoid it at all costs because it’s free, and fan-created. I say approach with caution, and hopefully the next episode will better serve adventure fans.
- The opening sequence is beautifully rendered, but when the game starts a-proper, the graphics are a little disappointing. King Graham. . . will, on several occasions, seem to catch on the outermost pixel of anything he goes near. . . . The puzzles you’ll encounter in this episode are not that many. . . If you’ve explored enough on your way out of the castle you’ll already have exactly what you need which is a little disappointing, but also, in a strange way, satisfying, as the story really begins to carry you along by this point. . . . The game is driven by a strong narrative, and unfortunately, just as you’re really starting to get into the episode, you find yourself in a long cutscene which signifies the end of the game. I think, from start to finish, I was probably playing for about an hour and a bit in the episode and was a bit miffed when the end of the episode threw itself at me. Having said that, now all the set-up and preamble’s out of the way I hope that Episode 2 ramps up the action, the puzzles and the story to the next level. . . . A good introduction to the series, but the end of the episode comes quite quickly. It's not perfect by any means - the controls and collision detection could do with some spit and polish but it's a free game made by fans and it's a damn good effort. You can hear the love that's gone into it as the narrator describes things and makes her little asides.
- Roberta Williams
- I am deeply honored that a group of devoted fans have dedicated themselves to reviving the characters, lands and quests of my adventure game series, King’s Quest. Without the bravery and persistence of these volunteers – and it should be stressed that this game was developed by fans over ten long years without pay and in their own free time — it is almost certain that King’s Quest would have been relegated to a forgotten obscurity – its story left untold. Now, there is a chance that many can truly find out what happens to the royal family of the Kingdom of Daventry. This game is very true to the original series and features many of the storylines and characters, especially, of King’s Quest VI. I found it beautiful and fun to play. I, too, like many other fans, would like to see how this story unfolds!
- Rock Paper Shotgun
- Clearly being a free amateur project, my expectations were appropriately placed. Interestingly, it both exceeded and fell short of them. Oh, and talking of falling short, I should mention right away that it’s extremely brief. . . . In fact, skipping cutscenes and dialogue… 9 minutes 50 seconds. Of course that’s skipping the entire point of playing, but it indicates how little there is to actually do in the game. . . . The graphics are an odd mix of some very impressive scenes. . . and oddly blocky, extremely dated textures and character models. Oh, and it’s in 3D, which is no small feat for an am-adventure project. . . . It's the detail in the writing that is most impressive. . . And extraordinarily for such a project, it's all voice acted. And even more extraordinarily, it's voiced extremely well. There’s only a couple of amateur-sounding characters in there, the rest sounding more professional than some contemporary commercial adventures. . . . The real weakness in this script is – beyond some of the descriptions being just too much information. . . far too many arch meta references to the fact you’re playing a game. . . . It’s all very well to have a character wryly complain about the obtuse nature of adventures. It’s quite another to have the narrator start plugging things, no matter how much of a joke is made of it. . . . Another gripe regarding the dialogue is the lack of an ability to carry on playing as it chatters away. . . . There’s a weird lack of pathfinding, meaning it’s far too easy to get stuck behind a pillar and run on the spot. It unfortunately makes things feel unfinished. . . . Other than giving someone an object from your inventory, there’s nothing even approaching a puzzle in this first chapter. In fact, the second half is almost entirely cutscenes. While these guys aren’t making money from this, and so they don’t need to worry about people wanting to invest in the rest of the series, it still seems a shame that they’ve spent so much time introducing the story, but forgotten to introduce any depth of game. . . .That there are such impressive cutscenes, huge amounts of dialogue, and piles of love poured in, is a remarkable achievement. The team deserve enormous congratulations.
- The first episode is quite brief. It’s little more than the introduction to the game’s story. . . . The production quality is significantly higher than I expected for a game put together by a group of volunteers. . . . Everything’s quite a bit jankier than a Telltale production would be — the voice work is shaky, the dialogue often leaden — but it’s all quite playable for fans of the genre, and quite frankly it’s better than some fully professionally produced PC adventure games I’ve played recently. Silver Lining clearly has potential, although it’s a bit disappointing that it didn’t quite get off on the right foot. The first episode has exactly one puzzle to solve, and the rest is clicking through dialogue and watching cut scenes. Still — you can’t beat the price. And fans who’ve been waiting for over a decade for King’s Quest to return will be happy to see their favorite characters back in action, crafted by people who are as into the games as they are.
Episode 2: Two Households
- Adrenaline Vault - 2/5
- The narrator, about whom I complained the last time, is even worse this time around. It is annoying to the point of being infuriating, and consistently made me not want to continue playing. Its attempts of humor fail miserably, its comments are ridiculously out of place most of the time, and its moralizing on more than one occasion is intolerable. I cannot think of another game that had such an atrocious narrator implementation. As much as I hate saying this, my overall opinion is that now, after the euphoria from getting Activision to allow this game has worn off, I cannot think of a reason for anyone (including the die-hard fans of the originals) to waste time on it.
- Evil Avatar - 3.5/5
- All in all, I have high hopes for the remaining three episodes of The Silver Lining. While I had my misgivings following the very short and puzzle-bereft first episode, "Two Households" has met almost all of my expectations I had going into this continuation of the King’s Quest story. Keep in mind that if you’re not an old school adventure fan or if you demand the latest eye-popping visuals in your games, then this title likely won’t be for you even as a free download. But if you either still actively enjoy the point-and-click adventure genre or if you get nostalgic about the King’s Quest series, then you really have nothing to lose by giving The Silver Lining a try.
- Family Friendly Gaming - 79/100
- If you enjoy classic adventure gaming and haven’t given The Silver Lining a chance, or if you were disappointed by the first installment, now would be a great time to get in on this adventure.
- Just Adventure - B
- I’m pretty impressed with how polished this game is for an indie, free, release. But, that said it was not without its imperfections. One dialog, for example, tells you that if you want to purchase something from a merchant you have to talk to him. In fact, talking to him yields no results; you actually have to click your money bag on the merchant. That was the hardest puzzle I had to solve throughout this episode.
- MobyGames - Critic score 73/100, user score 3.3/5
- Critic store is based on 6 reviews using a weighted average
- User score is 3.3/5 based on 5 reviews
- NAG Online - 20/100
- It's only just barely better than the first episode. Which isn't saying much.
- The Next Level - 3/5
- It took me over four hours to get through The Silver Lining: Two Households, and I'll be honest: I'm looking forward to the next episode. The series could stand to have a little more fire, but something tells me it will deliver. Unless you're looking for high-octane thrills with your exploration, this is a free title that's definitely worth your time.
- This Is My Joystick
- Overall: Avoid it
- I cannot recommend this game to anyone except possibly insanely die hard King’s Quest fans. The only "silver lining" I could find in the game is the music, the rest is just a simple "find items to solve puzzles" adventure done in subpar graphics, voice acting and writing. Even for free, don’t play it.
Episode 3: My Only Love Sprung From My Only Hate
- Abandonia Reloaded - 4.5/5
- 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.
- Adrenaline Vault - 3/5
- Do not pick this game up for gameplay – it is simply not worth it as you are very unlikely to have fun. It is nonsensical, it is not pretty and it is buggy to boot. This is not a game in the entertainment sense, but something more akin to a piece of very niche art. Most will find it unpleasant, but it could also be fascinating to the right audience. Perhaps I would have preferred if it was released as a short film, or a graphic novel, since the authors clearly have more luck with a non-interactive medium. Either way, I am definitely going to watch out for the next chunk. It would be simply irresponsible to miss.
- Adventure Spiele - 90/100
- The adventure is dangerous, challenging and extensive. Dangerous situations are everywhere and require Graham extreme caution. Sometimes it is also important to react at the right moment, which is some adventure fans might not quite like. However, it is not necessarily required speed, but rather the mind, as every situation can be mastered by a logical conclusion. The omnipresent narrator finally warned often enough from danger. Through additional beautiful puzzle the tense situations to be defused, for here the mind is asking, and the gift to translate information collected. New locales bring more variety to the game. With "The Silver Lining Episode 3 - My Only Love jump from My Only Hate", the story comes to a head, because new entanglements provide new concerns in Graham's life.
- MobyGames - Critic score 67/100, user score 3.9/5
- Critic store is based on 5 reviews using a weighted average
- User score is 3.9/5 based on 4 reviews
- The Lext Level 3.5/5
- And it is this universe that gives The Silver Lining its power. There is a rich history there, a chain of beloved moments and magical settings, a rich treasure trove to mine. The best moments in this game are probably the ones that reminds us of past exploits (if we were there) or pique our curiosity (if we were not). My Only Love Sprung from My Only Hate excels at giving longtime fans a lot to smile about without actually crossing over into a cheesy regurgitation. From the beginning, this was a project of love and admiration, and the tribute has become stronger and more polished with each go.
- Just Adventure (D to C+)
- Unfortunately, Episode 3 has left a poor taste in my mouth. The frustration I had in completing the game has depleted my passion for continuing. Perhaps in another month or two, when Episode 4 comes out, I’ll be refreshed and ready to take another chance.
Episode 4: ‘Tis in My Memory Locked. And You Yourself Shall Hold The Key Of It
- AdventureSpiele (German) 98% and an AVSN Award
- Greenlit Gaming 9/10
- Entertainium 5/5
- GamerLiving 3.75/5
- Nerdy but Flirty Episode 4: B-; Full Season: A-
- Gameblog.fr (French) 3.5/5
- IGN Italia (Italian) 8/10
- Select Start Media 8.1/10
- GameZone 7/10
- Dad's Gaming Addiction 9/10
- Capsule Computers 8.5/10
- Alternative Magazine Online 8.5/10
- Ordinary Gamer
- Fangirl Confessions
- Softpedia 7.5/10
- Hulking Reviewer 9.2/10
- Videogame.it (Italian) 4/5
- RageQuit (Greek) 82/100
- AdventureSpel (German)
- VideoGamePeople 9/10
- Indiependencia (Spanish)
- MiastoGier (Polish) 8.5/10
- Tap Repeatedly
- Prostomac (Russian) 7/10
- Apps Software
- Diehard GameFAN
- 1P Start 5.125/6
- Kickstart Ventures
- Altered Confusion 8.5/10 (full season)
- MeriStation (Spanish) 7.7/10
- True PC Gaming
- Part Time IndieGamer
- Expansive DLC 4/5
- Adventure Classic Gaming
- Nivel Oculto (Spanish)
- Game4Me (Dutch) 71/100
- Pop Culture Spectrum
- Computer Oiger (German)
- For the Love of Gaming 9/10
- All Ordi (French) 17/20 (Full Season score: 18/20)
- PixelPacas 4/5 Alpacas!
- Geeky Girl Reviews 4/5
- SteamGames.ro (Romanian) 4.5/5
- Game Reality (Finnish) 3.5/4
- Virtual Inn (Italian) 7/10
- Skillpoint.se (Swedish) 3/5
- Just Press Start
- Pop Matters 8/10
- Games.cz (Czech) 8/10
- Z-Giochi (Italian) 7/10
- GameSideStory (French)
- DarkZero 8/10
- Nerd Maldito (Spanish)
- Goozer nation
- The Digital Fix 8/10
- Dome.fi 3.5/5
- PCOnly 4/5
- BrainLazy 7.5/10
- Indie Game Reviewer 4/5
- Tech-Gaming 88%
- SquareGo 3/5
- UNDER Magazine (Spanish)
- 1001-up 43/60