BREAKING NEWS: Academy on GOG! (August 27, 2013)

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
As promised, the team at GOG has begun to release the rest of the Wing Commander series! Wing Commander Academy is now available for purchase! For $5.99 you get access to an oft-ignored gem in the Wing Commander series. Academy has the honor of being the 600th game released via GOG... but it won't be the last Wing Commander!

Wing Commander Academy was originally planned as a mission-builder module for Wing Commander II. Instead of requiring the original game, Origin decided to release it as an experimental "budget" title - a new game available for the then-unheard of MSRP of $50 instead of $80! A small team created the game with a 'less is more' philosophy, building on resources created for Wing Commander II while adding just enough new ships to tease planned future installments of the series.

The only extra included at the moment is the manual (the correct version including the cover and back pages!) That's to be expected, as very little related material was ever released for Academy (the television series of the same name is actually based on Wing Commander I and III.) Don't let Academy's small file size fool you - you can create endless missions, fly two new fighters and face off against a nearly impossible Gauntlet feature that will test your worth as a Confederation pilot. You can grab your copy here!





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Original update published on August 27, 2013
 
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Cool. It's actually a bit of a pity that they didn't make this one free-of-charge, like they did with the two Worlds of Ultima games. I doubt Academy will sell too many copies, and it could have served as an advertisement for the other WC games. Still, the important thing is that it's available.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
Cool. It's actually a bit of a pity that they didn't make this one free-of-charge, like they did with the two Worlds of Ultima games. I doubt Academy will sell too many copies, and it could have served as an advertisement for the other WC games. Still, the important thing is that it's available.

Academy is currently #1 at the top of the Shooter category sales chart, and it's pulled every other Wing Commander game available on GOG into the remainder of the top five. I don't think WCA needs our pity!

gog_sales_08282013b.png


@ dund: is it with the speech pack?

Academy's speech is built in - there's no standalone separate pack.
 
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Academy is currently #1 at the top of the Shooter category sales chart, and it's pulled every other Wing Commander game available on GOG into the remainder of the top five. I don't think WCA needs our pity!

Well, right now it's a new release, and all the hardcore WC fans are buying right now, so naturally it's at the top of the charts. I'm not sure about its chances to climb too high in the overall chart, though. Besides, I just think that the WC series could use a free title that helps to attract new users... though now that I think about that, I'm not too sure that Academy is quite representative enough :).

On a sidenote - having just had a look at that big list of all their games, I am shocked, shocked and utterly horrified to see that Freespace 2 ranks #19, while the best-selling WC game is WC3 at #40. What kind of twisted world is this? I mean, I know that WC games have it harder, because it costs more to buy all the WC games than to buy all two FS games, but still, it just seems so unbelievably wrong.
 

Dyret

Super Carrot!
On a sidenote - having just had a look at that big list of all their games, I am shocked, shocked and utterly horrified to see that Freespace 2 ranks #19, while the best-selling WC game is WC3 at #40. What kind of twisted world is this? I mean, I know that WC games have it harder, because it costs more to buy all the WC games than to buy all two FS games, but still, it just seems so unbelievably wrong.

Well, FS2 actually has reasonable gameplay, if little else. WC3 is somewhat lacking in that department. Why the other games aren't doing better is beyond me.
 

wcnut

Rear Admiral
Well that's due in no small part to the SCP which continually attracts new people into the fold whenever anything is released or a spin off mod pops up. If it weren't for them it would definitely be lower on the list
 

Pedro

Admiral
On a sidenote - having just had a look at that big list of all their games, I am shocked, shocked and utterly horrified to see that Freespace 2 ranks #19, while the best-selling WC game is WC3 at #40. What kind of twisted world is this? I mean, I know that WC games have it harder, because it costs more to buy all the WC games than to buy all two FS games, but still, it just seems so unbelievably wrong.

The handling of WC3/4 also leaves something to be desired due to technical constraints (rather jerky rotation). It's no shock that a more modern title sits higher on the list. For games that old a certain nostalgia factor is required to see past the issues.

I have higher hopes for WCP, as the most recent release it's aged much better and the controls still stand up amazingly well to this day.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
Well, right now it's a new release, and all the hardcore WC fans are buying right now, so naturally it's at the top of the charts. I'm not sure about its chances to climb too high in the overall chart, though.

I don't expect it to go too high on the overall chart, as even some of the main titles barely crack that, but even I was personally surprised to see how well Academy's attention has boosted the other games. I screenshot the rankings after every WC GOG release, and I've never seen all the available WC titles claim all the top spots before. Of course that doesn't speak to absolute sales numbers, and it could be influenced by other high profile titles (or lack thereof) in the recent lineup, but it's still pretty great to see.

Freespace... is just weird. It may have sold more copies via GOG than at retail...
 

wcnut

Rear Admiral
Freespace... is just weird. It may have sold more copies via GOG than at retail...

Well that's not saying much :p But it certainly has gained a lot more of a following then it did when it was released and should you really be surprised? It has more and better advertising now, thanks to it's community, then it ever did in 99.
 

Evan

Rear Admiral
It's not that surprising. FS2 has a lots of mods and better graphics because of the open source project.

I still have my Academy in a box on 3.5" discs. I guess, I will need to re-buy it via GOG, so I can burn it on CD as well :).
 

Dyret

Super Carrot!
The mods definitely help. I'm sure a lot of people are picking up FS2 to play blue planet or whatever.
 

HotJob

Rear Admiral
When Wing Commander- Prophecy gets GOG released, I hope the DVD and OpenGL mods here do for it what FreeSpace2 Source Code Project does for FreeSpace2!
 

Whistler

Commodore
they should link standoff and unknown enemy
Those mods are for Prophecy: Secret Ops which is currently free to download. However, they should link to the expansion, mentioning how it continues the story and how fans have created glory. It'd also make a helluva a lot of sense to link the Enhancement Pack. After seeing both games in OpenGL I don't want to go back.

Might even make Prophecy sell better.
 

wcnut

Rear Admiral
Yes, I know this. Those standalone games are the closest prophecy has to fs2's huge library of mods. And a little extra publicity never hurt. So what that it technically doesn't need prophecy, that's for the better in the end. You should see the fs2 link page, The Babylon Project and old BTRL demo don't needed fs2 assets and are stand alone as well. It's certainly wasn't a reason to let that stop them. A link of secret-ops and its mods is a must.
 

Evan

Rear Admiral
I would love to see Standoff and Unknown Enemy as standalone games for free on GOG. That would be awesome :D.
 
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