Behind the Scenes: Selling Privateer Online

Before Origin could develop Privateer Online in the late 1990s, they had to sell it to Electronic Arts. Alert readers are already familiar with the Privateer Online Design Layout (available in our Document Archive) submitted to the corporate office to explain how the game would work. To go alongside this document, the team also created a multimedia website to help sell the game. Thanks to an anonymous donor, you can now find that site here. The best part? The site features several never-seen-before preliminary ship renderings from the lost game!

The first couple shots appear to be a modular Vaktoth. The Crusader and Aurora, heavy fighters in the Border Worlds and Confed arsenal, are pictured next, and if you look closely, the last shot even has a swarm of Piranhas and Devastators.

Origin has an extreme edge over the competition with its strong properties like Wing Commander and Ultima. While most companies are struggling to create these properties AND communities from the ground up, Origin has several properties that fit perfectly in a persistent world environment. Each of these properties has an established loyal fan base and history that has been adored by fans for years. The next Origin property to go online? Wing Commander: Privateer.

With all that said Privateer with the strong universe backing and proven Wing Commander history proves to be the most extensive, entertaining and encompassing space based Online community in gaming history. PERIOD.

There's a ton of detailed information buried in the Privateer Online site, so make sure you check out all the various sections and links. Don't miss the areas describing how the game might control in flight, how players could interact and how ship components would combine to create over half a million different combinations. Potential sectors and systems are also diagrammed in detail. You can find a brief article describing the circumstances around Privateer Online's cancellation here.

Wing Commander Online Was Another Attempt

Privateer Online wasn't the only online Wing Commander game that met an unfortunate end. We've previously reported on concept art from Wing Commander Online. These images were on the drawing board in 1998, a year or so before the game was cancelled and the Privateer Online project was begun. There are some similarities between the POL and WCO concept shots, but they were made by different artists. You can find more here. Although it's sad that these games were never produced, it's really exciting to get an inside look at what would have been.


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

Explore Gemini Through An Orion Pilot's Eyes
2015-07-06 -- Last month we noted how rare thorough video reviews are for Privateer, and then we stumbled across a massive playlist by Necroscope. He's covered the game in fifteen installments that range from about 30-60 minutes each. That's a lot of Gemini Sector action!

Exotic Kilrathi Heavy Fighter Gives Excalibur A Run For Its Money
2015-07-05 -- Klavs has made some great Excalibur wallpapers over the years, but it's always fun to see what other talented artists can do when they don't need to build all of the art assets from scratch and can instead just focus on setting up a scene. Chris Kroznuski made this wallpaper with a simple background, but it pairs the Excal with the terrifying Hhriss in a match-up I don't think we've ever seen before. Although it appears the Kilrathi heavy fighter has the upper hand, there are very few dogfights the Excalibur can't win.

Happy Fourth of July!
2015-07-04 -- 239 years ago, the 13 American colonies declared themselves a nation, independent of the British Empire. Many of our visitors and staff are out enjoying a weekend filled with family gatherings, barbecues, carnivals and fireworks. To our international visitors, have a great weekend wherever you are!

Sharp Kilrathi Pencil Drawing Surfaces
2015-07-03 -- A few years ago, we did a brief rundown of the wealth of Wing Commander inspired imagery that can be found on the DeviantArt website. AD's come across a new pencil sketch of a Kilrathi, created by AirenWoodmoon. Like most Kilrathi drawings on DeviantArt, this one seems to draw mainly from their Wing Commander 3 appearance.

Bearcat's Back Again For More Action
2015-07-02 -- It's a good week for Bearcats! ScoobyDoo has added to the fun with a new take on the cult classic postwar heavy fighter. The shape is solid, and it's covered in Scooby's trademark hull details.

Opposing Fleets Line Up With Top Warships
2015-07-01 -- Line art is a bit of a lost art these days, but Red has used the technique to put together two pairs of capships from the Wing Commander Movie for Wolf's Shipyard. The Confed fleet gets both a Bengal carrier and a Concordia supercruiser. The Kilrathi get a Sivar and Snakeir.

Classic WC MUSH Transitions To New Forums RPG
2015-06-30 -- Iceblade is in the process of kicking off a really cool new forums-based RPG. He's taken the setting and storyline from the old WC Gemini Sector MUSH and transitioned it to a message board style that's more forgiving on people's schedules. It'll continue to retain some of the combat action and other elements from a MUSH while being merged with a more traditional text role play.

Starship Tactics Checks In With Demo Video
2015-06-29 -- Arraen is back to share the first gameplay video of his Wing Commander strategy mod, Starship Tactics. The clip shows off some Dorkir convoy raiding by a Confed corvette. This is actually a major role that the Ventures would have played during the war, although we so rarely get to see them engage in activity like this in the series.

Fantastic Bearcat Model Available For Download
2015-06-28 -- Last year Klavs released a pair of large Terran and Kilrathi model archives that included over a gigabyte of ships. Multiple fan projects have taken advantage of his generosity and are sporting some pretty slick looking craft these days. But he's continued to make new fighters!

SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Explodes Before Orbit
2015-06-28 -- After half a dozen successful resupply missions, SpaceX launches to the International Space Station were almost becoming routine. Unfortunately, a Falcon 9 carrying a new payload to the ISS detonated on the way up this morning. The good news is that the mission was unmanned, but the loss is greater than simple supplies.

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