Overanalyzing Wing Commander II
Alexander Freed, a freelance writer who used to work on video games and other products, has written a blog looking back at Wing Commander II and why it worked so well. Many Wingnuts consider Wing Commander II to be the best in terms of story and gameplay delivery and Alexander is no different.
In 1991, Origin Systems (shortly before the company’s acquisition by Electronic Arts) published Wing Commander II: Vengeance of the Kilrathi, which would prove to be one of the franchise’s high points. With the exception of adding then-rare voiceover content in a limited number of places and the sheer quantity of cinematic sequences, it is not an especially innovative game from a standpoint of storytelling mechanics. The dialogue, while more than acceptable for its time, reads as less-than-stellar today. But it is a game that excelled at the execution of its story, particularly in how its narrative elements supported and bolstered the game’s mechanics–and how the mechanics and mission design, in turn, supported its story.
Wingnuts can read the whole blog post here. An interesting note, while it seems Alexander didn't play Wing Commander II before writing, he did turn to a well known local source. The videos embedded in the blog post are from DaveO's Wing Commander collection.