Actor John Spencer, best known for his starring role on The West Wing, passed away on Friday. He was 58 years old. Wing Commander fans knew him best for his role in Wing Commander IV: The Price of Freedom. Spencer played Captain Hugh Paulson, the Third Fleet bureaucrat/tool of the conspiracy who relieves Captain Eisen as commander of the TCS Lexington. Paulson gives Colonel Blair orders for several missions before meeting an unfortunate fate at the end of Seether's laser knife. Spencer played the unlikable character perfectly - fans to this day continue to despise the slimy, sycophantic Paulson.
Rest in peace, Mr. Spencer. Our sympathies go out to his fans, family and friends. He will be well remembered as one of cinematic Wing Commander's brightest stars, if not one of its favorite characters. Yahoo has published an obituary, available here.
Spencer is the second Wing Commander actor to pass away this year - Privateer 2's John Vernon died in February. He is also the second Wing Commander Captain to die: the TCS Lexington's previous commander, actor Jason Bernard (Captain William Eisen), died tragically in 1996.
There's an exciting new addition to the CIC's Document Archive: the Privateer 3: Retribution script. The script was donated by former Origin employee Mark Vittek, who was heavily involved in the project. The script follows yet another main character as the Privateer but also features a lot of Wing Commander continuity -- Black Lances, Doctor Severin, Nephilim Stingrays and the like. It was written in late 1997 for a post-Prophecy project that was developed and then cancelled in 1998. Interestingly, the script includes a full budget for a film shoot and 3D renderings of various 'base' locations which would appear in the game. You can download the script here (26 megs, PDF). Below are some examples of the set design images contained in the script's third part.
The CIC is dedicated to archiving Wing Commander-related documents! If you're a former Origin or Digital Anvil employee with any scripts, notes, e-mails, design documents, advertising materials, company newsletters or the like then please contact us! We'll digitally archive them and return the documents to you.
New 3D Prints Highlight Gemini Sector Hotness
Sonnich Johannesen has shown off some large scale and beautifully detailed 3D prints from Wing Commander Privateer. The Centurion and (not pictured) Galaxy are from Astrofossil and the Tarsus model was designed by DJFX, who posted some gorgeous pics of his own a while back. The size of each of these is impressive, and Sonnich has posted some neat pictures of these ships coming together on the printer. (2018-02-20)
Paper Cruiser Returns Stronger & Better Armed
Adm_Maverick's Tallahassee papercraft cruiser is back again in a whole new way. This second major iteration improves on the first in a number of ways, including how the main hull fits together. It also has interior components that form the bow-mounted capship missile launcher. (2018-02-19)
Live Wing Commander Jazz Recording A Huge Success!
Origin composer George Oldziey has completed his live recording of Wing Commander jazz music. The event was conducted last week at George's studio in Austin, and pictures from the day make it look like they had a lot of fun! Initial results also sound fantastic, and we're anxious to hear how everything comes together in the finished album. (2018-02-18)
RPS Highlights Origin Fandom
Rock Paper Shotgun has run a neat article on longtime Origin collector Joe Garrity. There's a really interesting Q&A that delves into how Joe got started many years ago buying up spare copies of Ultima games and meeting with their creators. It also highlights some of the good work that fans have done to preserve historic material, such as our 2008 trip to archive Origin source documents at Mythic or the assistance Wingnuts gave Raylight to develop Prophecy for the Game Boy Advance. (2018-02-17)
Wing Commander On Sale For Lunar New Year
We've seen this sale before, but not quite for this reason. GOG.com is running a Lunar/Chinese New Year event that lops 71% off the price of the Wing Commander series. (2018-02-16)