WINE Improvements Clear Wingnut Pilots for Launch

Magamo has good news in regards to playing classic Wing Commanders on Linux platforms. Although DOSBox is the most popular method for getting old games running on modern computers, it's far from the only solution. Due to the different ways that each program emulates old environments, some methods may work better than others with different hardware/software combinations. It's been about six years since Prophecy and Secret Ops (and mods like Standoff) first became functional by using the WINE application, and compatibility has now been expanded to include most original Wing Commanders. Here's Magamo's report:
Five years on, and I can now quite happily confirm that Wing Commander III from Kilrathi Saga, and Wing Commander IV for Windows 95 now work quite well under WINE (I'm using the latest released build, 1.5.18). WC3's movies no longer stutter, nor does WC4's in flight background music. I still see Darkmage's bug listed on AppDB, but I responded to it today reporting my findings. Wing Commander I, II, III, and IV installed today worked fine and dandy so long as WINE was set to Windows 95 compatibilty. Unfortunately, I am sad to report that sol's ddhack which worked in 2010 to improve several aspects of these games graphically, no longer works. On my system, it loads the games, but centers the image so that the bottom half of the screen is completely cut off.

I will possibly report on the status of Prophecy and Secret Ops, with UE and Standoff at some point, but the Vision engine games have been running brilliantly under WINE due to Posicle_Pete's OpenGL wrappers for years (years ago, I even got UE working through it, albeit without pretty starfields).

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Official news, fan projects and topics of particular interest to Wing Commander fans.

Escapist's Not Feeling Privateer
2014-07-21 -- To coincide with the completion of the Wing Commander series on GOG, Escapist ran a series of reviews last year that covered almost the whole franchise. At the time they skipped over Academy and the Privateers, but they've circled back around with a Good Old Review for Gemini Sector pilots. It's the same reviewer that thought Prophecy was pretty good and loved WC1&2, but in this case, he just can't get into Privateer.

Krant Hardly Wait To Play
2014-07-20 -- Shaggy's completed the Krant fighter for Beat Hazard that he mentioned earlier this month, but the Kilrathi fleet isn't quite complete. The fearsome Jalthi is now in the works to supplement the kats on the very high end, and then that should finish off the planned lineup. You can see all of the cool ships that have been designed for this scroller shooter game here.

Armada/SWC Crossover Adds Self Sufficient Invasion Capability
2014-07-19 -- The parade of massive Kilrathi warships continues. Up next in the armada is the Shiraak carrier. It's a fairly rare ship to see in fan projects, and Klavs' take on it is certainly the most detailed Wingnut attempt.

New Documentary Explores Video Game Industry
2014-07-18 -- Crowdfunded documentary Video Games: The Movie examines the transition of video games from niche product to billion-dollar industry. It features several big names in game design, like Cliff Bleszinsky (Unreal, Gears of War) and Kobayashi Hiroyuki (Resident Evil). The only familiar name in the credits is Wing Commander veteran Warren Spector, but LOAF managed to snap (tweet) a half second of Wing Commander 4 footage with Mark Hamill, Chris Roberts and Malcolm McDowell in it.

16th Birthday Party Moves to a New Night!
2014-07-17 -- It's almost that time again! We're just about a month away from the CIC's 16th Birthday at wcnews.com.

Phoenix Crew Disembarks For New Experiences
2014-07-16 -- Silent Hunter asked us to remind everyone that the crew of his ship, the TCS Phoenix, is currently enjoying shore leave on pleasure planet Jolson. If that sounds like a place you'd like to be, join the Wing Commander From the Ashes RPG to start in. They are a forum based RPG that role plays its adventures here.

The Real Defiant Few Episode 5 Released
2014-07-15 -- The latest episode of Wing Commander: Defiant Few has been released! This time it's the real deal - a spoof was released on April Fool's Day. Episode 5 is actually a prequel chapter that takes place ten years before the prior four.

Starlancers' 45th Volunteers Remain Vigilant
2014-07-14 -- Here's a story fifteen years in the making: way back on August 26, 1999 (coincidentally the one year anniversary of Secret Ops' release), we reported on the "Star in Starlancer" contest. Lucky fans could win the opportunity to be featured in a digital promo poster for Erin Roberts' space sim game. Jaev73040 was one of the winners, and he recently came back to share the results - a pretty nifty squadron render!

Saga Plus Development Remains On Track
2014-07-13 -- As direct support of the original WC Saga mod appears to have come to an end, Luke has picked up the ball and is making good progress with his enhancement pack dubbed WC Saga Plus. In addition to support for multiple languages, improvements are being made to the ship viewer, fiction viewer, heads up display, mission editor and mission briefings. There is also helpful popup text and a menu interface for enabling various upgrades.

Hakaga Work In Progress Shown Off
2014-07-12 -- Wing Commander fans have seen quite a few of Klavs' ship renderings over the years, but they don't often get to see behind the scenes before the images are complete. Here's a peek at the Hakaga while it's still being assembled in MODO. It's overlaid with the Fleet Action cover in order to get the proportions right.

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