Adventures in Explorations: WC1 Edition

AD

Finder of things, Doer of stuff
I think it was Wing Commander II that Ellen Guon had wanted to allow selecting your gender.

The easiest option would be to swap Blair and Angel and then edit some pronouns. I think you're only really going to run into trouble when Jazz attacks Angel and then flees... there you'd need to rewrite that scene and the following briefing (Jazz would attack you, then you'd tell the Major you were chasing him...)

The Blair/Minx kiss in Special Operations 2 would also be a problem, but it'd be outside the boundaries of the original challenge.
Art-wise I thought of that too... just swap one of the female pilots for Blair. However with WC2 you would also need to end up re-recording a bunch of dialogue - particularly in the intro - to allow for the gender change. There's a number of other voiced cutscenes as well IIRC. WC2 also has a couple of cutscenes that are an early animation format. The Blair/Angel kiss isn't an issue if those are the characters you are swapping. As far as I can tell the game just mirrors people depending on if they are on the left or right... I'm not sure if that presents any problems for Blair's different uniform in the WC2 intro or not. The other animation that would need art would be the takeoff/landing animations when the canopy opens/closes, but that's an issue for both WC1 and 2.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Well, WC2 in the way it was actually created, poses more of a challenge than that. Swapping Blair and Angel either means some major narrative changes, or it means swapping Blair and Angel's roles around K'tithrak Mang and the stealth fighters, too. That generates all sorts of issues.
 
That can already be done.

The standard WC1 font and the WC2 Western European font:

View attachment 9983

View attachment 9984

Sample in French:

View attachment 9985

A few Kilrathi characters just for fun:

View attachment 9986
I used your tool to extract the WC2 fonts (I think I have the CD version loaded right now.) but I'm not seeing any of the extra Western European fonts. Can somebody please upload all the WE fonts images so I can start working on them. Thanks.
 
Thank you, but I'm not interested in the patchs I'm interested in the extracted WC2 Font files. I would like to add them to the Windows font I was building.
 

Darkmatter

Rear Admiral
I was directed to this thread when I asked about renders above 360px.

Has anyone made any attempt to increase what size image the program will handle? As a follow up question, the default resolution for WC2 is higher then WC1. What is the max size for WC2, and if it is a fair sized bigger, could WC1 as a game, be "ported" (painfully I'm sure) to the WC2 engine? What about WC Privateer?

Thanks
 

Stinger

Vice Admiral
I was directed to this thread when I asked about renders above 360px.

Has anyone made any attempt to increase what size image the program will handle?
I believe the sprite size limit can be increased (or removed), but I won't have any time to look into it for at least two more weeks. The game resolution cannot be improved without massive effort, which limits the usefulness of increasing the sprite limit by more than, say, 2x.

As a follow up question, the default resolution for WC2 is higher then WC1.
The game resolution is not any bigger, and there's also no sense of a "default" resolution; all DOS WC titles prior to WC3 are locked at 320x200.
 

ShadowArm

Ensign
I believe the sprite size limit can be increased (or removed), but I won't have any time to look into it for at least two more weeks. The game resolution cannot be improved without massive effort, which limits the usefulness of increasing the sprite limit by more than, say, 2x.



The game resolution is not any bigger, and there's also no sense of a "default" resolution; all DOS WC titles prior to WC3 are locked at 320x200.
WCIV was supposed to have a higher res option, but it didn't make into the final game if my memory serves well.
 

Darkmatter

Rear Admiral
You know, it's to bad that the latest space sim engine we have to use is FS2. It especially sucks that last I heard, there was no way to remove the "curved turn" that FS had. :( I thought I read that someone had made a flight engine on their own but I don't know how it's features compare to FS2.

Edit: About DOS games being locked at 360px. Any chance that can now be manipulated since they re-released it for Windows?

I thought at least Privateer had a higher res but maybe not. I don't even want to know what be involved in making a modern sprite based space game engine. lol I don't do programming. :)

Just a very out of the box idea, but you could do one of 2 things in 1 of 2 engines.

You could recreate the games in the FS engine, or the other engine someone made using 3d models and if you wanted to keep a more WC 1/2 look you could do that both with modeling and texturing.

The second idea (and this is probably totally 100% impossible) but could you "lock" a 2D sprite ship/object into a true 3D environment like the FS game engine by using a small polygon cube as its centre, which you would never see since it would be hidden by the sprites. As long as you could use a very small cube you'd never see it. I know, that is a VERY out of the box thought, but I just woke up so you get to read me ramble on about whatever. lol

Another rambling thought. If the true limit is not so much the pixel dimensions but the total bytes, and the biggest offenders to developing this "OMG, the pixels! They're SO big! The goggles, they do NOTHING!!!" Are large objects like capital ships and starbases, could you actually increase the pixel resolution by cutting back, not increasing, the number of "animation key frames" for lack of a better term. Multi-layered gif/png animations, if you prefer. You don't move around a large object at the same speed as a small object so you might be able to get away with fewer frames. Whether it is worth it or not, I wouldn't know unless I saw it/tried it.

Absolutely last crazy idea. Could more then 1 sprite object be properly aligned and linked to each other to make ships that are made out of more then 1 sprite model? Then you could go above the total limit per ship. Yes, I am crazy, thanks for asking. :)
 
Last edited:

Howard Day

Random art guy.
You know, it's to bad that the latest space sim engine we have to use is FS2. It especially sucks that last I heard, there was no way to remove the "curved turn" that FS had. :( I thought I read that someone had made a flight engine on their own but I don't know how it's features compare to FS2....
Well. :) If you'll wait just a biiiit... https://techraptor.net/content/erich-schaefer-rebel-galaxy-outlaw
Specifically this: "If the devs decide not to make DLC, the fans might be able to do it. “We are gonna have much better mod support this time. It should be prettyeasy for players to make their own ships, their own missions, their own style of games.” Erich related a tale to me where his co-founder Travis Baldtree had recreated the entirety of Wing Commander: Privateer in the game’s engine. While their Star Wars pitch never got off the ground, fans will surely take it upon themselves to make something like that happen anyway."
And as a glimpse of the aforementioned re-creation (
)
There's hope, is what I'm sayin.
 

Darkmatter

Rear Admiral
You could do a lot with an engine like that, and yes, you could do a straight "graphics enhanced" but faithful conversion for a game like Privateer but I've found that if you truly want to do a faithful update you can't stray to far from the original game. This much more up to date engine would lend itself better to an "enhanced" updated for the modern era, version since it has capabilities that the original team could never even conceive of. The problem is where do you find a pixel based engine to MAKE an updated version of the older games? I have heard of a sprite upgrade project that involves Doom, and from what I saw, they seem to be able to get higher pixel resolutions that you can get in WC, but I have no clue if a Doom, or Doom 2 engine could support a wide open skyboxed universe like with a WC game, or if it is moddable to that extent.

Obviously, finding a way around the 360px limit in the actual game would be the easiest way to go, assuming a way even exists, but if I understand correctly, right now you have no idea what is even involved in removing that limit.

Thanks for the link though! I'm ready to throw my money at them at any time. lol

Edit: I'd actually love to take a look at the textured models. Are they up on the wcnews site or have you kept the 3D models yourself? (Which would be understandable since I'm sure you put a lot of work into them.)

Edit2: And that engine better be able to do beam canons!
I'd also take wide area explosion nukes, and the ability to manipulate the gravity that an object produces. ;)
 
Last edited:

Ragger

Veteran Spaceman
Medal Scoring

Your medal score, and mission score, uses a points system for various aspects of the mission including destroying different classes of ships:
  • light fighter: 7 points
  • medium fighter: 10 points
  • heavy fighter: 15 points
  • transport: 15 points
  • corvette / destroyer: 25 points
  • cruiser / carrier: 50 points
  • dreadnought / space station: 75 points
The medal score is specific to you, while the mission score is the total for the wing, but there is a potentially strange relationship between the medal and mission scores (a bug maybe?). Let's explore this strange relationship by playing Brimstone 3 (S05M2).

When starting the mission, your medal and mission scores are obviously zero. Midway to the only navigation point we engage two Jalthis. After killing the two Jalthis and letting Maniac die, both the medal and mission scores are the same:

Medal Score: 30; two heavy fighters (2 * 15)
Mission Score: 30; two heavy fighters (2 * 15)
View attachment 9817

We continue to the navigation point and engage the first wave of Krants. The Kilrathi Ace Khajja is part of the wave and we dispatch him first:

Medal Score: 40; added one medium fighter (30 + 10)
Mission Score: 65; added one medium fighter, a Kilrathi Ace (30 + 10 + 25)
View attachment 9818

We proceed to kill the remaining Krants of the first wave:

Medal Score: 70; added three more medium fighters (40 + 3 * 10)
Mission Score: 95; added three more medium fighters (65 + 3 * 10)
View attachment 9819

We kill all the Krants of the second wave, but spare the transport:

Medal Score: 90; added two more medium fighters (70 + 2 * 10)
Mission Score: 115; added two more medium fighters (95 + 2 * 10)
View attachment 9820

After the mission, for the debriefing, the final scores are calculated and something interesting happens, we gain additional points:

Medal Score: 100 (90 + 10???)
Mission Score: 115
View attachment 9821

No, you are not being rewarded for having lost Maniac. What happens is a penalty is being strangely applied. Whenever you lose a wingman, you incur a 15 point penalty, applied indirectly to your medal score. It happens this way: the mission score is transferred to the medal score with the penalty subtracted, therefore in this particular case, the medal scores increases to 100 (115 - 15). The above mission awards a Bronze star if the medal score is 91 or higher. If our wingman had not died we would be short 1 point.

Under specific circumstances, we can gain medal points by having our wingman die if we also kill a Kilrathi Ace (+25 for the ace, -15 for the dead wingman). But it is also even stranger, if our wingman has kills, they count towards the mission score, not our medal score, but if our wingman dies, we "inherit" those points.

In the above mission: we fail to kill the transport therefore we fail the mission, we also lose our wingman, we ultimately fail the series, and we get a medal for it!
Can you use this to figure out how to achieve a silver star in Bimstone 2? THAT is a MAJOR piece of info I'm looking for!
 
Top