Auctions, Auctions, Auctions!

In keeping with our policy of promoting online auctions by former Origin employees, I'm happy to announce... a huge lot of items from Rhea Shelley! Mr. Shelley worked on Privateer 2, Wing Commander Prophecy and Secret Ops. Sharp minded fans may remember him as the author of "Alien Capital Ship Attack Techniques", a piece of the Secret Ops fiction! So, go out there and spend some money! Since he's starting by selling off software and books, I thought it would be fun for all to mention some of the history behind the releases he's selling right now:
Wing Commander 1/2 & Official Guide: In early 1994 EA sold a pair of 'twin packs'. One paired the Strike Commander and Privateer CD releases, and the other combined the deluxe editions of the first two Wing Commander games. Privateer/Strike Commander was the more popular of the two... making WC1/2 harder to find for sale today! This copy is shrinkwrapped, which may be of interest to some collectors. (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Privateer 2 Deluxe: This is a rare game indeed. Several months before Privateer 2 came out, Origin's website advertised that you could purchase a "Deluxe Edition" straight from EA's mail order service. It was to include the hint book, a poster, a cloth patch and a copy of the original Privateer CD. Everyone was very excited... until they called the EA Store and were told that the deluxe edition had been cancelled. That would have been fine... except it wasn't cancelled at all. If you called EA's store and asked for the support department instead of ordering, they would actually check their inventory and place an order for you. Since no one knew this, very few people got copies of P2 Deluxe... outside of copies sold at Origin's company store. Many of the contents of unsold P2 Deluxes (cloth patch, poster, etc.) were later resold as part of the Windows 95 rerelease of the game. It's not visible from the picture, but this is a "big box" - like the Ultima 9 Dragon Edition, if anyone is familiar with that more recent release. (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Prophecy Gold w/ Guide: Prophecy Gold, for those unfamiliar, is a collection including both Wing Commander Prophecy and the Secret Ops followup. It also includes an updated version of the manual, adding some additional fiction and some of the ship specifications that were unavailable when the Prophecy documentation went to print. If you don't have a copy of WCP:G, now is the time to get in on it - the game is slowly increasing in general value, and looks like it could be the next Kilrathi Saga! (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Privateer 2 w/ Guide: If you win this auction, be sure to ask Mr. Shelley to sign the included Official Guide for you - he's one of the playtesters that the book quotes throughout. (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Kilrathi Saga: This is a mint, still in its shrinkwrap edition of The Kilrathi Saga. KS is probably the most sought after item among casual Wing Commander fans... since it allows you to play the original three DOS games in Windows 95. KS also includes a beautiful manual, set up as Col. Blair's 'scrap book' containing items pertaining to all three games. But heck, the game would be worth it just for that beautiful cover artwork. This auction is sure to run high! (Current Bid $41, 5 days remaining)

Srike Commander/Privateer & Playtesters Guides: This is the second of EA's 1994 'twin packs'. It's slightly more common than WC1/2 set... but you also get more for your money! Strike Commander and Privateer are both their CD versions... which include full speech and, in the case of Strike Commander, additional 3D sequences. (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Wing Commander III Tin: This is the "Premiere Edition" of Wing Commander III. Only 2,000 copies were made and sold through EA's store. It may look like it's missing the "WC3" sticker on the tin... but that's actually how it was made! For whatever reason, a large number of WC3 Premiere Editions never recieved their sticker... so many that EA actually issued an apology to Premiere Edition buyers. (Update: this auction actually includes the sticker... unstuck on its original wax paper! I've never seen one like that for sale before.) (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

UK Privateer 2 w/ Patch: Here's one that's rarely available in the US - the British version of Privateer 2, featuring a beautiful piece of alternative artwork as the cover. Grab this one before I do! The "pirate clan" patch is also included in this auction. The patch was given out to team members and included as part of both "Deluxe" editions of Privateer 2. I've never understood why they chose the "Chirichan Pirate Clan" as the theme for the patch... but they did! (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Underworld/Wing Commander II: Back in the early nineties Origin had two big lines, each with their own separate fanbase. Ultima people played Ultima games and Wing Commander people played Wing Commander games... with very little overlap. How do you get one interested in the other? Release a line of unlikely-paired 'two for one' game packs! With this plan in mind, Origin sold "Ultima VI and Wing Commander" and a "Ultima Underworld and Wing Commander II" CD sets. This auction includes the Ultima Underworlds hint book... so you can see how the other half lived. (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Wing Commander IV w/ Guide: There isn't much to say here - this is a perfect copy of Wing Commander IV, which is great for anyone interested in starting a Wing Commander collection. It's shrinkwrapped and everything! Does anyone remamber that long, difficult delay for Wing Commander IV? We all expected it to be out on December 8th, 1995... and that morning Origin's website posted a press release announcing that it was delayed until February 12th. Longest two months of my life! (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Secrets of the Wing Commander Universe Book: This was a circa 1993 unofficial Wing Commander guide... but unlike some of the cheap WC3 and 4-specific guides, SotWCU was a beautiful piece of work. It's well written, well illustrated and was very clearly a labor of love for a true wingnut author. It includes a background of the Wing Commander universe, a comprehensive ships guide and specific strategy guides for every game up to Privateer. This is the only printed guide that includes information on Special Ops 1 and 2. (Current Bid $3, 6 days remaining)

Privateer Playtesters Guide: This is probably the most sought-after of the English-language Wing Commander guides! (Possibly not the rarest number-wise - that honor falls to the Armada guide). The Privateer Playtesters Guide includes maps of all the systems in Gemini, with the percentages the computer uses to determine random encounters at each point. If you're still paying off your Centurion, this is the rare useful strategy guide. (Current Bid $3, 6 days remaining)

Collection of Manuals: This is a lot of mostly Origin product manuals... including the much desired Kilrathi Saga booklet and the beautiful Voices of War (Armada). It also has Strike Commander's Sudden Death magazine, which any fan of Wing Commander 1's Claw Marks should appreciate. (Current Bid $3, 6 days remaining)

Collection of CDs: This is a lot of various individual CD-ROMs... including a Wing Commander IV/Crusader demo disk! The Wing Commander IV demo pits you against pirate fighters and frigates in a 5-15 minute gauntlet. It has a neat easter egg, too - target Dekker's shuttle when you takeoff for about twenty seconds, and it'll drop an extra stormfire gun for you to use! This lot also includes a copy of The Seventh Guest, which included an award winning score by Wing Commander 1 & 2 veteran Fatman. (Current Bid $3, 6 days remaining)

Wing Commander Deluxe w/ Official Guide: Here's a copy of Wing Commander Deluxe and the official guide. More importantly, however... if you're coming to Dragon*Con in the future, you need as many cheap copies of Claw Marks as you can get your hands on. We've managed to besiege Aaron Allston with more and more Claw Marks autograph requests each year, and the trend must continue! (Current Bid $3, 5 days remaining)

Whew! That's all for now - though Rhea Shelley is also selling numerous other games and more RPG material than I've ever heard of existing in one place. You can find a complete listing of these auctions here! I suppose I'd also be remiss without mentioning that he's got a copy of Wings of Glory for sale... one of the most unappreciated games ever made! If you enjoyed any of the 'talking heads' Wing Commander stories or any of the other Origin flight sims, you owe it to yourself to pick up a copy of WoG! We'll keep you updated as more auctions show up.

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Get Your WC4 DVD On With Lazy Game Reviews
2017-11-20 -- It's turning out to be a great week for classic game channels on YouTube! Lazy Game Reviews has posted a very in-depth profile of the Creative Labs Encore DXR2 DVD-ROM kit. He does a great job setting the stage for just how cool this was in 1997 and covers every inch of the box and its contents.

Metal Jesus Rocks The Whole Wing Commander Series!
2017-11-19 -- Metal Jesus of MetalJesusRocks is back with another Wing Commander video, and this time he's here to do a rather comprehensive overview of the entire series. Anyone can cover WC1-4 and Prophecy on YouTube, but MJR goes further with coverage of expansion packs, Academy & Armada, the Privateers, Super Wing Commander and Kilrathi Saga. He even has both the regular and Premiere Edition of WC3, SNES & Sega CD ports of WC1, and both standard and Gold Prophecies.

We've Got This Sector Bottled Tight, Friend...
2017-11-18 -- We've got a new poll out today that asks which of the the galactic sectors in Wing Commander is your favorite. This obviously isn't an exhaustive list, and there are some omissions like the Landreich or Hari Sectors that have quite a mystique about them, but we went with eight mainline areas that are particularly noteworthy. Sometimes sectors are short-hand named after the stars and quadrants within them, so if you're looking for Antares or Deneb, you can find them within the larger Epsilon cluster.

I Like This A Hole Lot
2017-11-17 -- LOAF was poking around in Wing Commander 2's background files and discovered a hilarious easter egg that would ordinarily never be seen by the player. The game frequently uses a red and green communications interface for dialogue sequences between a fighter and larger carrier or base. A small rectangle on the right features a graph intended to depict signal strength or something like that.

Taste That Synthi Meat
2017-11-16 -- The Wing Commander series has had quite a few large and elaborate print advertisements over the years, but even by the franchise's often lofty standards, this one's a whopper. This ad is spread across six full pages and follows a "five senses" theme with a late '90s vibe. Sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch are all emphasized along with a smattering of FMV screenshots, gameplay scenes and a handful of commodities.

A Localization Interrogation
2017-11-15 -- Most Wingnuts are familiar with all of the cool contents of a basic Wing Commander Prophecy box... but this one's a little different. Can you spot everything that makes this setup unique?

Upgraded Corvette Ready For Vision Engine
2017-11-14 -- Version 0.32B of the Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack was just released, but work continues at a rapid pace. The Kilrathi are the next focus, and they're led by the fearsome Corvette.

Catch Up On Strike Commander's History
2017-11-13 -- The DOS Game Club is a really cool place dedicated to gaming highlights of the '80s and '90s. Their community selects a game each month, and then they jointly play it together and discuss in their regular podcast. A recently selection was Origin's Strike Commander, and our own Bandit (LOAF) was able to participate in their episode on it.

Wing Commander Composer David Arnold Interviewed
2017-11-12 -- Modern Vinyl has posted an interesting interview with David Arnold, the composer behind the Wing Commander Movie's famous Overture theme. Much of the article focuses on the recent vinyl release of his work on Hot Fuzz, but it also notes his wide ranging involvement with films from James Bond to Stargate. Check out the full article here.

Homeworld Mod Removes Bugs & Fixes AI
2017-11-11 -- There's another new update to the Homeworld Remastered mod, Flag Commander. L.I.

OldiesGames Does Vengeance Of The Kilrathi
2017-11-10 -- We've been following the OldiesGamesTV series of Wing Commander reviews for a number of years, and now they've completed their three-part profile of Wing Commander 2. The videos are in French, but even if you can't speak the language, seeing all of the minor differences in the game are really cool if you originally played in another language. And where you understand their words or not, it's clear that they're big Wing Commander fans that we're happy to support!

Wing Commander Album Track List Complete!
2017-11-09 -- George Oldziey is back with another update on the progress of the second Wing Commander album. He's been quiet for a little bit, but there has been tons of progress on the orchestration front. The basic track list is complete and PDF scores will even be sent out soon.

Secret Ops Is All About Squashing Bugs!
2017-11-08 -- Fans have been running the new Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack through its paces hard since the latest version was released last week. As intended, the test managed to tease out a few bugs, and the team quickly responded. DefianceIndustries and PopsiclePete have already managed to put out a new version that resolves the issues identified so far.

Three Cheers For WC2 Manuals
2017-11-07 -- Wing Commander games can come in all shapes and sizes, and today we have a look at the different colored manuals of Wing Commander 2. WC2 was one of the most ubiquitous titles of the early '90s thanks to several factors: the popularity of WC1 was key, but it also was a major showcase for in-game speech and eventually mass-produced for inclusion in a large number of different OEM and budget CD-ROM releases. The red manual below was quite common and the black lesser so.

Shapely New Wing Commander 3D Prints Available
2017-11-06 -- Carter3D is a cool Shapeways outfit with a whole bunch of neat ships. There are quite a few Star Wars designs, but there are also about a dozen detailed Wing Commander models available to 3D print. Carter seems to be a Prophecy fan, but there are also a handful of ships from WC3&4 mixed in as well.

Wing Commander 3 Play-Through Remade At Nightmare Difficulty!
2017-11-05 -- It's been more than ten years since the legendary Queeg released his consolidated Wing Commander 3 movie. The original film set download records at the CIC and garnered hundreds of thousands of views on YouTube. Now he's back with a brand new take on The Heart of the Tiger - this time he's completed the entire game on Nightmare difficulty!

GalCiv 3 Mod Continues To Expand
2017-11-04 -- Hellakazoo has posted some additional screenshots of his Galactic Civilizations 3 WC mod that highlight some of his latest additions, such as the Tarsus and Clarkson jammer. There's also a neat screenshot of one of the game's menus that feature the character portraits. Some of the recent CIC Forums discussion has been about what to add next.

Wing Commander Scores Lucky #7
2017-11-03 -- Here's a throwback to a twenty-one year old issue of Computer Gaming World. Back in November 1996, when we all were just getting into the Wingnut scene online, CGW posted a comprehensive "best 150" games feature. Wing Commander came in as the 7th best title of all time, just behind other famous contemporaries like Sid Meier's Civilization, Ultima IV, Doom & Sim City.

New Prophecy, Secret Ops Update Adds Ships & More!
2017-11-02 -- The newest version of the Prophecy and Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack has been released! It includes a whole pile of exciting ships that have been gracing the news over the last few months. There are additional bug fixes as well as some new features to smooth in-game graphical loading.

Kilrathi Invade #GamingHaikus
2017-11-01 -- We may have missed International Haiku Poetry Day by quite a bit, but idspispopz is there to make sure we're still covered with this simple yet elegant Wing Commander poem. Feel free to hit the comment link and add your own!

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