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  • After making Dragon's Lair a success, Rick Dyer turned his attention to making an adventure game that required strategy rather than reflexes. In Thayer's Quest, you play the role of Thayer Alconred, last of the bloodline of the Elder Kings. Your objective is to prevent the evil Sorsabal from finding five relics from the five kingdoms which can be combined to form the Hand of Quoid -- which he intends to use to take over the world. As with just about every other LD game, Thayer's Quest is not completely interactive, but rather forces you to make decisions. What makes Thayer's Quest unique lies in its input device and its voice synthesis ability. You make your decisions by punching in commands on a keyboard instead of with a joystick. In addition, the computer uses synthesized speech, where players are actually called by their name during the game.

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  • Along the way, the player collects and casts spells on enemies, and listens for hints from people you meet along the way. Many of the characters turn their back to the screen when they talk or have coverings over their mouths because the left and right channels have different dialogue! When you defeat the game it tells you there's more waiting in "disc two" which never made it to the arcades. There are actually three screens for continuing to Thayer's Quest -- "The High Ruler", "Disc Two", or "The Last Battle". The coin-op laserdisc is single-sided and only contains three out of the five kingdoms. Although a more extensive, double-sided version of the game exists for the home laserdisc RDI Halcyon system, it too was unfinished. Thayer was later released for the 3DO system as Kingdom: The Far Reaches, although the character names were changed and the sound and speech are somewhat different. A game called Shadoan came out as an official sequel to Kingdoms, but it was created from scratch. We're still waiting for a "complete" version of Thayer's Quest.

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