Knightmare Lexicon - A Knightmare Encyclopædia

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1. wastage
Term used to refer to material written for Knightmare quests that had to be abandoned when the team failed before completing the quest.

Knightmare creator Tim Child has commented on this on a number of occasions:

'At first, I had written and planned each adventure, together with all its options and clues, as a single unbroken interactive narrative. But this proved extremely wasteful.

The cast had to learn each adventure from top to bottom. And when a team failed in Level 1, the entire adventure script was discarded.

Older cast members such as John Woodnutt (Merlin) became confused about which speeches they should be learning.

Eventually, I solved this problem by plotting each new game on a level-by-level basis. The dungeon was already divided into three layers:

Level 1, easy/introductory
Level 2, tricky/eliminatory
Level 3, hard/final

A new team would start with an unused Level 1 script. If they completed it, the producers picked up the next available Level 2 script, and so on. No objects were carried over from level to level, and the gameplay improved accordingly. The cast were a lot happier too!'

- History of Knightmare,

'In the early years I plotted adventures (together with all their branch and loop options) from beginning to end. Any bits that were not used were just thrown away. At no time did I 'pass on' unused adventure plans/scripts from one series to the next. Scenes and characters - yes, but plots, never.

As described in the history, this early practice led to massive wastage, hence the eventual decision to configure the dungeon into three levels, with no clues/spells etc allowed to be carried from level to level. This meant that we worked through the plots in a progressive fashion, picking up the next level 2 plan as a team had completed the last level one. This was much better for the cast who had to learn a lot of lines and scenarios very quickly.

So typically, the 4th team starting in a series, would begin with level 1 / game 4 (1/4). On completion they might move to level 2 / game 3 (2/3) reflecting the fact that one of the previous teams in that series had died at the end of their level one. On completing level 2, this fourth team in quest would then transit to game plan 3/1, reflecting the fact that they might be the first team to reach the lowest level in that season.

When a team in quest completed a level, they usually experienced a game break of about an hour. This was to allow us to customise and record [Lord Fear]'s next subplot, which would be played in through the spyglass in the first clue room they encountered.

In his level one sub-plots, the dungeoneer and friends were never referred to by name, because they could have been any anonymous team, but by level 2 they were known, and Lord F and his minions were starting to treat them as a personal threat.

When it was possible, at this point to refer back to incidents in the recently completed level 1, we would do so, as it helped to build a continuous narrative, whereas in truth we were just bolting together sections of game plan.

A small note: to avoid confusing the cast, the individual game plans were colour coded. All the level ones were buff; level twos were always blue, and threes were green I think.'

- Interview,, 2004

'Even after we made all Level twos and Threes standalone/transferable, there was still bags of wastage. This contrasted greatly with the programme action itself, where we only edited out an average of 5-7 per cent. '

- Interview, Bother's Bar, 2007

Provided By: David, 2021-01-15 18:23:21
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