Whoooosh! Click! Pow!

Here's some shots of Dark Sentinel's nifty Skates actually rendered in the Vision Engine. The first shot shows the new raw models compared with the old, and the subsequent images are the craft in the game's the ship viewer. That's a nice improvement there! You can actually play against these baddies in the latest iteration of the WCSO Model Upgrade Pack here.
Skate! Skate! Skate! Senora...Enjoy the glory of @Dark Sentinel's awesome Skate and Skate clusters.

Whoooosh! Howl! Screech!

The Flat Universe mod is in for a treat! Here's some gorgeous shots of the Banshee DefianceIndustries put together for their game. As for the next iteration of the project, fans can still register for the upcoming multiplayer alpha. The Maslas Brothers are still working on finalizing it for release, but it's expected within about a week or so.
Dear WingNuts,

It was supposed that from yesterday the FlatUniverse public server had to be operational and open for you. Fortunately :) for our living and unfortunately :( for you, a weeks work came out and our development time was reduced to one evening and as it was proven it was not enough. The good news are that there isn't much more work left to do but the release has to be postponed for the next week.

As I said many times before, I wish we could develop games for a living. We are very very sorry for the inconvenience guys. See you in cockpit!

the MaslasBros

Whoooosh! Zip! Whirrr!

Here's an awesome animation of Klavs' Concordia model that originally debuted back in February. The scene is a familiar one from the beginning of Wing Commander 2. With its hangar decks burning, the Concordia jumps into the Gwenydd System and an ISS Ferret comes to the rescue! There's also a cool turntable vid to see the ship from all angles.

Party Chat Logs Now Online

Somehow it's already been a week since the CIC's Nineteenth Birthday Party. If you couldn't make it to the big event in #Wingnut, you can still catch up on the merriment through the chat log. It seems hard to believe, but the countdown now begins to our twentieth anniversary in 2018! If you'd like to continue chatting with fellow fans between now and then, you can also visit #Wingnut on the CIC's Discord server.

Album Campaign A Success!

Wingnuts once again brought a successful crowdfunding project to victory! George Oldziey's second Wing Commander album campaign concluded this afternoon with 275 backers that contributed $16,552. George has touted this as "phase 1" with the ultimate goal of still having a live orchestra rerecord things, but what has been collected so far will enable both digital reorchestrations and live Wing Commander jazz tracks. Now, the real work begins, but enjoy this moment! If you'd like to see what went into the creation of the first album, check out the video below.
We Did IT!!! YOU Did IT!!!

Congratulations all! After 30 days and a lot of work we finished above the goal by a very comfortable margin. I'm going to get RIGHT to work on getting all the phase 1 work done, which will include recording the bar music, doing all the orchestrations for the eventual recording of the orchestra, creating the MIDI mockups for it as well as getting the parts and scores formatted for PDFs.

I'll also update you very soon on what the next phase will look like. In the mean time, I'm going to try to stay dry here in Central Texas as I get down to work.

Again, THANK YOU so very much from the bottom of my heart! You are all the BEST!

George

Last Chance To Join Album Campaign!

It's the final day for George Oldziey's second Wing Commander album campaign. With the project already given the go-ahead, any further proceeds will help potentially get the planned digital reorchestration turned into a live affair. While that option is still probably a ways off, be sure to get your contribution in ASAP if you want to make sure to be able to get the second album as soon as it's made!
Greetings all! With a little less than 24 hours left of the campaign we are comfortably over the goal, with some extra funds available towards the next phase, which would include paying for the musicians, recording engineer and conductor. I'm am more than thrilled with this wonderful start! And I am also thrilled that I will indeed be able to bring you the MIDI mockups of the eventual recordings as well as live recorded bar music in both CD and download form, as well as score PDFs for those who pledged at that level.

Many thanks to you all who not only pledged but obviously helped get the word out! You are the best!

Musically yours,

George

Hercules Ready For Some Heavy Lifting

Marine landing craft are never the most glamous space ships in the Wing Commander universe, but they serve an important function. They shake up a typical transport escort mission and turn it into something with a unique offensive punch at the end. The Hercules LC from Prophecy is an especially underwhelming design, but DefianceIndustries has made the old dustbuster look pretty darn good!
Ha! So I managed to get a bit more free time and sneak the Hercules in under the wire. So the [alpha] will include ye olde Marine assault craft. Enjoy!

Final Three Days Of Album Campaign

We're now entering the home stretch for George Oldziey's second Wing Commander album. Less than three days now remain, and the campaign is sitting pretty at nearly $16,000. Since it crossed the $15K threshold over the weekend, the project will proceed, and fans will at least get a digital reorchestration of Wing Commander music that combines with a live WC jazz component. George also continues to update fans with interesting history along the way, however, and his latest update has to do with the main theme that players hear when they enter the Victory's bar. Give it a listen and read about the inspiration below!

Greetings all! First of all, I'm elated that we've already made the goal of $15K for phase one of the campaign. Thank you all SO much for your incredible support! I'll be announcing some more short term goals for the next 5 days to help cover some of the costs that will be part of the upcoming phase 2 campaign.

In the mean time, as a follow up to the video I gave you all explaining the process of creating the original bar music for Wing Commander, here is a brief description of the process of creating this iconic bar tune! As in the previous example, I "borrowed" the chord progression from a pre-existing jazz standard called "Donna Lee", which was composed by the great jazz saxophonist Charlie Parker. Here is a rendition of his original recording of that tune.

Actually, Charlie Parker also "borrowed" the exact same chord progression from an even OLDER song called "Back Home in Indiana". Here is a rendition of the jazz icon Louie Armstrong performing that song. See if you can hear the similarities of all three renditions.
So, when it comes time to record the bar music version with live players I'll have the sheet music all prepared for them to read! More to come!

Musically yours,

George

Scary Ship Stalks Spacelanes

Dark Sentinel has managed to once again create one of the most detailed Nephilim capships ever rendered. The subject today is a dark and brooding Orca class destroyer. It's followed up by a smaller Barracuda corvette. Both have a creepy lifelike quality that glows through a tough exterior shell. Soon we should get to see how it looks in the Vision Engine!
Let us talk about destroyers.
...
Or rather, to hell with that, ALL PILOTS TO YOUR SHIPS THIS IS NOT A DRILL.

Done in 46337 triangles and 2x1024x1024 textures. And well, bump+glow for this render. Destroyed components include hangar and both plasma guns, so with a total of 10 (4x missile turrets + shield emitter / bridge / engine + launcher + 2 plasma weapons)... I think I'm safe here. I have some ideas on how to make the glowing windows and it actually works, but I need to see if it looks okay ingame.

Album Campaign Reaches $15,000 Milestone!

George Oldziey's campaign to create a second Wing Commander Album had an amazing weekend! After getting a big boost from some generous matching funds, the story was picked up at Slashdot. Altogether, this brought in more than $5,000 in just the last four days, which means the project successfully hit its $15,000 minimum threshold! The funds that people have pledged will be paid out after the campaign concludes this weekend, and George will proceed with his digital reorchestration and Wing Commander jazz album. Additional funds collected will continue to enhance the endeavor, and another live orchestra isn't out of the question! Less than five days remain if you'd like to secure your copy!
We Did IT!!! YOU Did IT!!!

My friends, I can't tell you how happy I am right now. You have made it possible for us to embark on volume 2 of this amazing legacy you have granted me. I am humbled, ecstatic, inspired and energized all at the same time!

SO! We have 5 days to go and we've already met the goal for phase 1. That means we have time during this phase to pursue some of the goals for phase 2. I'd like to start with a goal of funding the conductor, Allan Wilson, for the orchestral recordings. He is one of the premiere conductors in the world (London Symphony, etc.) and conducted our very well received and reviewed volume 1! That goal is $3000. So, if we meet a total goal of $18K by the end of Kickstarter phase 1 that would be covered!

To help with that, I'm creating another 3 seats for the recording session in Austin (looking like early December of this year) at the $300 pledge level!

Again, I am SO humbled by this, and am SO looking forward to bringing you amazing fans more music from the Wing Commander Universe!

Musically yours,

George

Eclipse Glasses Still In Short Supply In 2790

There's a Privateer 2 News Bulletin that's especially timely today! This blurb was a way of conveying that the price of optic nerve commodities was increasing on planet Hephaestus (and it was written as a poem because P2 is weird). Specifically, "magnifiers" had been used to view the planet's eclipse rather than "smoked glass," hence the need for these medical suppliers. And, of course, eclipse-type imagery plays a prominent role in some of the promotional materials for The Darkening...
Tip-top Eclipse Tips Mix-up

Unfortunately, poetry correspondent Toni Cowey reports, as he was the only one there.

Alas! 'Tis a day of woe for the sorry folk of Hephaestus. Suffering has cast its shady hand upon the brow of many, while foul misunderstanding has bereft the common man of sight. The cause? The cause? Bewail the man, bewail the foe, whose fellows he has blighted so. It was the day of the eclipse, an event on men and women's lips, when foul Misfortune did conspire, the TV computers to miswire. And thus, instead of smoked glass, the order now did come to pass, that Magnifiers should be used, an act which retinas abused. Now men are blind and cannot see, and Optic Nerves are of rarity. I thank you.

Happy 19th Birthday, CIC!

Welcome to another CIC Birthday Party! Counting our grand opening event in 1998, this is the 20th time we've gathered to celebrate how the Wing Commander series has brought together this amazing community. It's always a great opportunity to re-energize with our fellow fans and perform some important site refreshes. A number of talented Wingnuts have also contributed towards the exciting posts below to make sure today's extra special. We hope you enjoy what we have to share today!

Happy Birthday Sing Along!

Origin composer George Oldziey recorded this extra special video message to help celebrate the CIC's 19th! Sing along at home with everyone else and join the fun! His campaign to make a second Wing Commander album had a successful matching drive this past week and is now up to $12,500! The project still needs another $2,500 this week, so please help support this Wing Commander endeavor!

Happy 19th From DefianceIndustries!

DefianceIndustries kindly sent along these cool graphics to commemorate the CIC's 19th Birthday. But wait, there's more! People have been asking us about CIC gear for a while, and it's been a long time since we've had anything new. The circular shape of the graphics below is designed to print to a custom drink coaster. We didn't get a chance to find a good place to make these before the party, but we'll set something up in the future so community members can get their drink on and protect their tabletops at the same time!

Check Out Flat Universe's Nav System & New Screens

Here's an exciting look at the next iteration of Wing Commander Flat Universe! For starters, there's a peek at the depth of the game's navigation system. The Maslas Brothers have created an entire database out of the Prophecy universe map for pilots to explore. Check out this cool zoom animation (8 MB gif) to see it in action. There's also a brand new batch of screenshots from around the game from the latest build. Enjoy!
What we've done is that we have taken the whole map from Wing Commander Prophecy and we have digitized it in QGIS. This way we have the whole Wing Commander universe not just visually but also in database format which we are implementing in game. As you can see in the animated .gif we can zoom from galaxy view down to system view seamlessly. The information for each system include all the information expected from a Wing Commander game: Jump points, Undiscovered jump points, Nav points, Bases/planets, Hidden bases/planets (e.g pirate bases, retro planets), Asteroid fields, Mine fields, Anomalies (e.g. Scylla), & Many others...

The systems for which we have information (e.g. the ones in Privateer, Sol, Vukar Tag etc.) we will try to recreate them as they were. For all the rest we are preparing a procedural mechanism that will "fill the gaps" based on various parameters like number of jump points, type of Sun, proximity to the sector capital, proximity to military bases and others. We already have one of our friends (and Wing Commander fan) here in Greece implementing a dynamic trade route system that will make the whole thing look alive.

Finally the whole system allows for dynamic changes in game like change of ownership for a system, base or planet and for condition variables like if there is a battle and/or blockade in the system, affecting the world around it. Soon one could make (or attempt at least) a travel from Venture in Argent across the galaxy to Jugara in Vukar Tag or recreate many historical battles in various known locations.

And Then Play Flat Universe Multiplayer!

And you can now register for the open Flat Universe multiplayer alpha! The game will be playable on both 32 & 64 bit versions of Windows, Linux and MacOS! It incorporates numerous improvements from smaller scale tests and is the coolest version yet! The Maslas Brothers are targeting next Saturday, August 26, to go live with the multiplayer server. Sign up and get ready to play!
Get access to the first open multiplayer alpha version of the game!

This early access version includes:

  • Room based online multiplayer game
  • Improvements suggested during the closed alpha period:
  • HUD improvements for better situation awareness
  • Better balancing for the heavies (esp. the Broadsword) plus their turrets now get damaged
  • Black-out and tunnel vision effects due to high g maneuvers (which gets worse if your acceleration absorbers are damaged)
  • Highly improved explosions (the old ones where boring)
  • A couple new soundtrack pieces by Cory Fujimori
  • Updated graphics effects (better anti-aliasing, bloom etc.). The poster image is not a mock-up. It was render through the game engine!
  • Several bug fixes and improvements
  • And most importantly: A brand new launcher/patching system that will allow us to make incremental updates to the game without the need to download/reinstall the whole thing.

Or Play The New Model Upgrade Pack!

DefianceIndustries also has a new release ready to go for the slick Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack. This new build revamps several major cap ships and implements the joinable Skate clusters. Grab it here (65 MB exe) and have fun!
It's now available for you to download and test. Go forth, check it out, shoot some skates!

Document Archive Keeps Growing

In our daily updates, we sometimes share fascinating background information related to the development of a Wing Commander product. This could be never before seen storyboards, pictures from the film set, early draft scripts that differ wildly from the final version, or high resolution source files used in the creation of the box art. In 2004, we launched the Document Archive with the purpose of collecting and categorizing these materials so our visitors can more easily research the development history of their favorite titles. For our 19th birthday, we've greatly expanded the collection of documents related to Privateer 2: The Darkening. Below is just a small selection from dozens of new additions. We've also brought the layout in line with CIC Red and Yellow. We hope it's a little easier on the eyes.
  • Scripts: a fairly complete shooting script
  • Design history: storyboards, the post-mortem, a massive customer service manual (238 pages), and various set photographs
  • Manuals: Radically different UK manuals, and a helpful hint sheet
  • Artwork: Pre-release images from early builds, various concept art, logo tryouts, hi-res artwork
  • Advertising: a six page press kit from the 1996 E3, an extensive preview booklet, and a crew jacket

Prophecy Completes Holovids FMV Archive

It's an exciting day for the Holovids section - all of Prophecy's cinematics have been converted and made available for streaming. This means that every single cinematic from the FMV games are now online! Continuing his work from previous years with WC3, WC4, and Privateer 2, AD has taken the DVD-quality cinematics and added them to Holovids for your viewing pleasure. Each clip has been paired with the text from Prophecy's shooting script providing an interesting insight in to the cuts, changes, and ad-libs made during the course of production. You can find the index of Prophecy videos here.

CIC Now With Added Arena

A little under a month ago we were all celebrating the 10th anniversary of Wing Commander Arena's release, so this seemed an appropriate time to revisit our coverage of the game. In doing so, our Background section has now been given a dedicated Arena page, and our original Arena mini-site has been brought in line with the rest of the site. Our dedicated Background page can be found here, and if you missed it don't forget to check out Chris' amazing 10th anniversary coverage!

Download List Gets Birthday Update

Over the years, the CIC has gathered a huge number of files in our archives from all types of places. We've been working on organizing many of those files, 116 gigabytes of them to be exact, in our Downloads section. It's been given a birthday update to cover the things we've posted the last few years.

Wingnuts will find game trailers, official patches, manuals and other documentation, as well as tons of great fan made patches and projects. Be sure to take a look!

Any Questions?

Here at the CIC, we get asked a lot of questions. Sometimes they are even about Wing Commander. But when we noticed that we were no longer getting so many questions about running Prophecy on a 3Dfx card in Windows 95, we decided that it was time to act! As a result, our Contact Us page has been given a bit of a spruce up, and the Frequently Asked Questions are now a little more relevant in 2017. Have we missed any important questions? Contact us and let us know! We'll add the most frequently asked questions to the list. As long as they are about Wing Commander.

New Poll: Still With Us?

The traditional birthday poll is now up with another year added to it. How long have you been coming to the CIC? We get a steady stream of newcomers, but we know a lot of Wingnuts have been with us since even before the very beginning!
The old poll asked about your favorite fixer from Privateer. The ladies of Gemini Sector clearly won with Tayla in first, Taryn Cross a close second and Sandra Goodin in third. Even Lynn Murphy almost beat Admiral Terrell for fourth. Dr. Monkhouse seriously got robbed with just 0.59% of the vote... less than half the tally of the unnamed informant from Righteous Fire!

Thank You!

And that's another year down! The community came through again with some really cool releases, and hopefully you enjoy the updates we've made at the CIC as well. A big thanks to George Oldziey, the Maslas Brothers and DefianceIndustries for their contributions to the event. I'd also like to personally thank the rest of the CIC Staff for pulling together to do a big refresh - much of which was important behind-the-scenes cleanup that really helps the site but isn't as visible. They've gone above and beyond so that LOAF can recover from his recent operation. Next year will be the big 20th Birthday milestone. We're very much looking forward to that, and we hope you join us for the ride!

You Are Cordially Invited...

To the Wing Commander Combat Information Center's 19th birthday celebration! TONIGHT at 7:00 PM Eastern US (4:00 PM Pacific and 11:00 PM GMT) in #Wingnut

Featuring...

  • Some of the best Wingnuts you'll ever meet!
  • New ways to get your game on!
  • A deeper look behind-the-scenes of the series!
  • Prototype coasters!
  • New Hot Items!
  • Trivia - from Anhur to Zoro!
  • Prizes that would be worshipped as gods by Dolosians!
  • Cake... and more!
So point your IRC client to irc.wcnews.com, channel #WingNut! If you need help with IRC check our #Wingnut section, or just use the web interface (even works on mobile devices!).

Last Chance To Grab Matching Funds For Album Campaign!

It's been a productive 24 hours for George Oldziey's mission to make a second Wing Commander album. The project is well past $10,000 now, but there's still some room to go if fans would like to take advantage of a generous Wingnut's matching pledge. Overall, about $4,000 needs to be contributed in the next week for the project to get the green light. That's very doable, but it's not a sure thing. If you have any friends who might be interested, now's the time to share! Listen to some samples from the first album below
Matching Dollar Pledge Ends [Today]!

Thank you again to everyone who has pledged so generously! I just wanted to send out a reminder that a very generous, and anonymous WC fan is anxious to match all new pledges, and pledge increases dollar for dollar up to $1000! But this only lasts until [Friday] at noon CDT. So tell your friends and families, acquaintances, total strangers!

I will have another "quiz" and prize announcement out soon, so keep your eyes and ears open!

Musically yours,

George

High Caliber Plunkett Cruises Into Upgrade Pack

Here's a peek at the latest addition to the Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack. DefianceIndustries has finished texturing Dark Sentinel's Plunkett and getting it to function in the Vision Engine. This powerful cruiser now has some high quality detailing to match its imposing stature. While it's known for having four large triple heavy particle/plasma turrets, it's also covered with twenty-two dual laser turrets as well! We can't wait to see all its guns in action!
I should've gone to sleep hours ago, but converting capships is time consuming work - placing hard points sucks...but the results, ah so beautiful. We now have a fully functional Plunkett in the MUP.

Flat Universe Shares Fantastic Music Sample

There hasn't been a whole lot of Flat Universe info in the news lately, but that's about the change. Here's a very cool audio sample that gives fans a taste of what to expect next. The clip is from project musician Cory Fujimori and fuses some of the best elements of WC1/2 audio into an exciting patrol track. There's everything from the flight deck scramble to a high pressure torpedo run music as well as successful and calming victory notes for the trip home. Listen below (or download 7.6 MB mp3) and stay tuned in the days ahead for more!

Flat Universe: Full Mission

Most of the time, we brag about the visual quality of our project. This morning Cory Fujimori managed to give us another reason to be proud of.

What you are about to hear is how a typical diamond patrol would sound on Flat Universe. Although Cory warned us that this is not finished and that it still needs ironing we'd like to share our morning experience with you.

Just close your eyes...

the MaslasBros

WC Album Bar Music Explained - Plus Matching Bonus!

Wing Commander composer George Oldziey has posted a really cool video update that talks about the inspiration for the TCS Victory's bar music that will be featured in his new Wing Commander music album. A surprising amount of skill and improvisation were required, and there's some interesting linkage to non-WC music as well.

Additionally, there's some very exciting news on the actual crowdfunding front. An anonymous fan has committed to donate matching funds up to $1,000 for all pledges between now and Friday! So if you've been waiting, now's your chance to help make the new album a success! The project has hit $10,000, so there's less than $5,000 to go to make it a reality, but that amount has to be pledged soon. You can add your contribution and order your copy here.

Wonderful news! A VERY generous Wing Commander fan (who prefers to remain anonymous) has offered to match all pledges DOLLAR FOR DOLLAR up to a total of $1000 between now and 12 noon CDT this Friday, August 18th! That means each dollar you pledge between now and then will be doubled until the pledges reach $1000 during that time span. This is a GREAT opportunity to help kickstart (no pun intended) our campaign again, and will really help to position us as we head into the final week.

SO, please get the word out to all your friends! And if you have already pledged and have the means to contribute more your money will go twice as far!

Musically yours,

George

Fan Makes Epic Remaster Of WC Theme

Utho Riley put together an interesting 'orchestral rescore' of the main Wing Commander theme. The instruments are certain embellished and there's a pretty major choral element. It's accompanied by an overlay largely comprised of Origin concept art and fan renders, which is fun to watch. Utho dedicated this to LOAF, who's doing better but still in recovery mode. Give the track a listen and let us know what you think!
This is fan-music dedicated to my favorite person EVER! Ben Lesnick!

Armada 2 Mod Adds WC's Heavy Cruisers

The Wing Commander mod for Star Trek Armada 2 continues to make new headway. We reported on its resurgence after a five-year hiatus earlier this year, and Janos Miklos is back with some addition screenshots and news to share. Right now the Confederation and Kilrathi factions are part of a larger mod with a variety of Star Trek races, but the plan is ultimately to streamline the project into a conventional human versus kat setup. You can read all about the mod and download a copy for yourself here.
Hello Wing Commander Team,

I just made new screenshots from my game mod and would be nice to publish these too on your amazing site. I really love Wing Commander and I liked to had the opportunity, back in 2012, to convert that Wing Commander mod from Star Trek Armada 1 to Star Trek Armada 2 using the Fleet Operations game engine.

Right now, the Terran Confederation it's integrated in a new game mod and can be download from here. In a few months [now partially complete], in that game mod will be the Kilrathi race too as a playable race, fighting against the Terran Confederation or other alien space forces.

Wish you all the best,
Janos Miklos

Fans Needed To Help Album Reach Its Goal!

The campaign to create a second Wing Commander music album is up to $9,500, which is a good start. There's now less than two weeks to go through, so another $5,500 needs to be raised to make the project a reality. In addition to enhanced digital reorchestrations of a wide variety of classic music from Wing Commanders 3, 4 and Prophecy, when fans make this happen, composer George Oldziey will also do a live recording of the TCS Victory's bar music! To keep things rolling along, we should strive to hit at least $10,000 this weekend. You can help join in here!
Thank you SO much to all of you! Let's not get too confident or complacent! If you haven't already done so could you please share this campaign with others in your social media networks? Perhaps we could shoot for an end of weekend goal of $10K? I think it's definitely achievable!

Have a great weekend, all! And again, thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your support! It's so very humbling and heartwarming!

Musically yours,

George

Here's a sample of what Wingnuts accomplished last time. This is the WC4 intro with some of the remastered music added in!

Vesuvius Gets Even Sharper Teeth

The Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack isn't just about bringing the visual assets into the 21st Century. That might be the main priority and most obvious change, but incremental improvements continue to be made as they make sense. In addition to making the new Vesuvius model look great, it's now got destroyable components as well as significantly upgraded turrets. There are pictures below, but you should check out the video to get a real sense of how dangerous a torpedo run will be against one of these things!
Update for everyone. I'm currently working with @gr1mre4per testing his new collision mesh building tool (aka. the cursed tree!) So far things are going pretty smoothly. I was finally able to create a destroyable Vesuvius bridge! Hooray!

I got some free time this weekend and was able to iron out some of the issues with the additional features in the next release as well as finish making a fully explodable Vesuvius, and I was able to confirm my theory on how to make extra illuminated objects like the hull windows dim/explode with the rest of the ship, it's kind of a hinkey work around but it allows for better visual effects.

I did manage to throw on the AMG turrets as well. Here's a sequence of images detailing a head-on approach. I recommend using the 5 D's of Dodgeball... Oh and those unused turret pads in the last image...future home of IMREC launchers. WHEEEEEE! I really think the Vesuvius is something of the spiritual successor to the Confederation-Class Dreadnought. A fleet-carrier-cum-battleship.

Happy Birthday CIC!

Nineteen years ago today, the CIC first opened its doors and welcomed in the Wing Commander community! We marked that occasion with a big online party, and next week we'll continue the tradition with another big bash in #Wingnut on irc. Hopefully you can join us on Saturday, August 19. Everything gets going at 7:00 pm EDT (4:00 pm PDT and 11:00 pm GMT), and newcomers can easily drop in to our easy web chat interface. The CIC will get a bit of a refresh, and we'll get to enjoy the company of all you diehard fans. Bring your trivia chops and come ready to party!

Help Identify WC Track & Win An Autographed CD!

Fans keep pledging to support the new Wing Commander Music Album, and composer George Oldziey keeps working on the enhanced tracks that will be included in it. Today he shared a very interesting sample. It's clearly some of his classic WC work, and George's personal notes explain what it was designed for, but he can't quite pin down exactly where this was used. So, he's holding a contest for Wingnuts with good ears! If you can place what game this came from and how it was used, you could win an autographed WC album! More info is below.
Greetings all! I just finished orchestrating another Wing Commander piece. I know from which game it came, and I know how it was used, but that's about it. I found the original MIDI file and played it, and it sort of rang a bell, but the instrument translation didn't sound familiar at all, so I basically took the visual structure of the notes in the original MIDI file and used it as a reference to guide me with creating this orchestration in Sibelius.

The first person who can identify the game from which it came as well as the purpose of the music in the game (i.e. cinematic, combat music, mission music, etc.) will win either an autographed CD of the volume 1 Wing Commander orchestral sessions, OR an autographed CD of my Latin Jazz band GATO 6 (your choice). I'll accept either a comment through Kickstarter or direct email (oldzieymusic@me.com).

Here is the video of the software playback of the score. Good luck!!

Come For The Fleet Carrier, Stay For The Retro Workhorse

DefianceIndustries has pulled back the curtain on his impressive fleet carrier model. This is his detailed rendition of the TCS Lexington. The exterior space frame looks exquisite, but the interior is where it gets interesting. He's had to play with the perspectives and scaling to accommodate both the various ship stats as well as the high resolution game flow shots we have. There's no way to get this perfect, but DI has given it an excellent shot. We can't wait to see the flight deck with more details and bristling with fighters! This update gives you two for the price of one! Here's the nearly finished Talon done up in Retro livery. Pretty sweet!

New Bug Infestation Ready For Squashing

Dark Sentinel is back to ship building, and he's crafted several new creepy Nephilim vessels. The screenshots below start with a full lineup of Skates, including their individual Skate elements as well as the grouped bombers and mine-laying variants. The Manta workhorse also appears, plus the Stingray cluster adds another separable model. Finally, DS has started working on the Orca Destroyer. It's still in the very early stages, but he's struggling with how to round it out. You can help provide feedback at the CIC Forums!

Preview First WC4 Track From New Album

George Oldziey's campaign to produce a second album of Wing Commander music is in full swing. We're a third of the way through the allotted timeframe and nearly two thirds of the target amount has already been pledged! While this is great news, we're also entering a period of time where most crowdfunding efforts plateau and stagnate a bit. If you haven't been able to contribute yet, now would be a great time to keep the momentum going. George has also now started work on a new track from WC4. This is just a preview - the final version will be even better - but we like what we hear so far!
Here is a video of a score for some combat music from Wing Commander 4 that I just finished orchestrating. This is what the PDF will look like for you that will be getting those rewards. The MIDI version will be tweaked quite a bit before it ends up on this phase 1 CD. These sounds are generated by my music notation software for demo purposes. The eventual orchestral version will sound INCREDIBLE!!!

What You See Is What You Play - Over & Over Again!

Tom's Hardware has posted a new feature on the Best Replayable Games. They've pulled together a rather diverse assortment of games that are good for more than a single run through. A lot of these types of articles tend to skew towards a particular genre, platform or timeframe, but this one is impressively broad with both new console games and ancient ascii adventures side-by-side. Wing Commander makes the top ten thanks in large part to its gripping story that branches down both elaborate winning and losing paths. You can find all the selected games here.
As a pilot onboard the Tiger’s Claw, you have to go out on multiple sorties in the ongoing fight against the Kilrathis. Succeeding in missions brings you and your allies one step closer to the Kilrathi high command. However, you might also lose some battles, and you’ll need to defend your ship against the incoming Kilrathi fleet. This idea of constant progression in the campaign regardless of victory or defeat in combat results in one of two different endings for the story. If your forces are overwhelmed by the Kilrathis, you will need to play the entire campaign again and improve your flight skills in order to claim victory over the hostile aliens.
Thanks to Jbirdjavi and Don L for the tip!

Get Well Soon, LOAF!

We're happy to report today that CIC co-founder Ben 'Bandit (LOAF)' Lesnick has managed to pull through some rather harrowing eye surgery today. He's got a few weeks of recovery ahead, but it sounds like doctors are optimistic that the complex operation he's undergone went well. LOAF recently shared some of his personal medical journey, and fellow space sim fans have been incredibly supportive. Medical technology keeps getting better, so here's hoping that he comes out of this in even better shape than before. And on a lighter note, check out the absolutely amazing art that Pixelgeddon recently made for him! It's a pretty awesome depiction of LOAF done up in WC2 style - great job!

One Time...

Independent music service Bandcamp has made the news this week by announcing that 100% of their share of every digital music sale made on Friday will benefit the Transgender Law Center, a nonprofit organization that works tirelessly to change law, policy, and culture for the more equitable. The promotion will run from midnight to midnight Pacific time and further details are available here. With that in mind, we thought we'd spotlight some Wing Commander music available through the service that you could purchase while also supporting a good cause!

Wing Commander Album Half Funded!

There's good news on the drive to make more Wing Commander music! With over $8000 in contributions so far, the project is more than 50% towards its $15,000 minimum goal after five days. The new campaign aims for enhanced digital reorchestrations as well as live recording of the Victory's bar music at a much lower cost than previous attempts. And if the project goes over the minimum threshold for success, that just helps potentially make a full live recording more likely down the line.


Since the prospects look good this time around, George has already started making headway on the first track. He's posted an awesome example of some new Wing Commander 3 combat music below. There's also a new $120 tier added that comes with a copy of the score, new album and one of the remaining copies of Volume 1. This is a good option for anyone who missed out on the first CD. A limited number of additional copies can be obtained by also adding $40 to any existing option.

In anticipation of a successful campaign I'm going ahead with as much orchestration as time permits. Here is a video of playback of a finished score from some combat music from WC3. The sounds in my notation software don't quite do it justice (I'll create a separate MIDI arrangement for the phase 1 CD that will sound a LOT better) and of course when (not if :) we get to the orchestra stage it will sound incredible!

The piece loops back to the beginning and will eventually fade in the orchestral version. This is ALSO an example of what the PDFs will look like except they'll be in page format.

Enjoy!

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