Jerry Pournelle, one of the giants of science fiction literature, passed away on Friday. He was best known for his frequent, genre-defining writing collaborations alongside fellow luminary Larry Niven, including The Mote in God's Eye, Lucifer's Hammer and Footfall. He was an unparalleled creator of worlds in his own right, responsible for series like Janissaries and the CoDominium setting, which has become an expansive shared universe that continues to expand today. Mr. Pournelle was equally respected in the tech world, where his early advocacy for personal computing took the form of a famed BYTE column, Chaos Manor, that ran in some form or another until his death.
Wing Commander fans will remember Mr. Pournelle as one of our own, a true fan of the series and an advocate for our favorite universe. In fact, it was through his computing column that I first discovered the series, his passion for the series causing my father to take note and suggest it to me. When Baen started developing Wing Commander books, Jerry Pournelle was an early choice for the third slot in the package. The initial plan was to have him outline a story for Ellen Guon (which would have involved the destruction of the Tiger's Claw.) Alas, contract issues blocked the project and the book assignment went to William Forstchen's Fleet Action instead. Some years later, he expressed an interest in telling more stories in the Privateer setting, which unfortunately also did not materialize.
You can access years of correspondence and columns through his A View from Chaos Manor website.
Kilrathi Fleet Gets Large Scale LLOD Upgrades
A couple of monster models have made their way into the Last Line of Defense project. Using some newly discovered information, Deathsnake has scaled up his fearsome Rigakh cruiser. Fairly credible stats imply it's even larger than the Confederation class dreadnought! (2018-03-19)
Black Lance Transport Certified For Covert Cargo
After leading the charge with a pair of exotic Black Lance designs earlier this year, DefianceIndustries has circled back around and completed the Evansville class transport that we see in Wing Commander 4. It has a fairly sleek profile for a transport as well as oversized engines, which form a pretty effective combo. There's no better way to sneak clandestine cargo to out-of-the-way places! (2018-03-18)
Happy St. Patrick's Day From The Green Salthi
Confederation hull plating is well known for its green texture, and terran soldiers even occasionally sport a green tinted outfit, but it's a far less common color on the Kilrathi (aside from the kats that actually have green skin). We know the common brown color of Kilrathi ships comes from the hue of their local durasteel, but there's one major exception to this: the green Salthi - or Jalthi, rather. The Secret Missions for the Super Nintendo had to squeeze to fit everything on the cartridge, and one noteworthy cut was the elimination of the six-shooter Jalthi model. (2018-03-17)
Explore Wing Commander History as Prelude to Star Citizen
Magnets & Miracles Gaming has put together a historical overview video series going through some of Chris Roberts' older games and how they formed the genesis of what we see being planned for Star Citizen. It's similar to what the Cloud Imperium crew put together in their series of RSI Museum videos. Part 1 focuses on basic back story, Wing Commander and Wing Commander II. (2018-03-16)
Un Juego de Chris Roberts
Christian Klein, the Pixel Engineer, has dug up another awesome European localization. It's a second Spanish DROsoft box that includes a combination of both Secret Missions in the same package! The reverse side of each has been translated and combined into one, but the included paper inserts appear to still be in English. (2018-03-15)