GBA That could've been...

Spien

Spaceman
As most of you all ready know, before Wing Commander Prophecy showed up on the GBA, Raylight was working on another game that was basically a homage to the early Wing Commander 1 and 2 universe in terms of gameplay and graphical style called "Star Giants"

But alas, this project apparently caught the attention of EA and Star Giants was retooled into Wing Commander Prophecy, which is fine as any Wing Commander on the go is still a great idea, but unless you played Prophecy on the PC the talking heads were confusing and the darker graphics of Prophecy didn't fare to well on a non-backlit GBA screen.

Here's what IGN had to say about Star Giants.

The development team is also hard at work on a Wing Commander-style space combat engine with the project name Star Giants. This title will feature a sprite-based 3D environment, similar to the first two games in the Wing Commander series. In single-player mode, the game will follow a branching story with multiple paths and endings depending on your progress throughout the missions. Star Giants will also include support for link cable, allowing for four players to battle against each other...or combat as a two-man team against the other players. Star Giants does not have a publisher, so don't expect a release until later in 2002.
Looking at the screenshots located here, http://www.gamesxtreme.net/screenslist/302.shtml , I kind of find myself wishing that Star Giants was released instead of Prophecy since it's more colorful and more WC1 and 2 looking, and it would have a new branching story done in classic Wing Commander style, but I guess EA would've sued them if they had released the game without their permission since it's so similar, and I suppose EA thought they could make a quick buck if they said, "Hey why don't you turn this into a REAL Wing Commander game instead?"

Anyway, I would've loved to play Star Giants, what do you guys think?
 

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
Eh, you've got the actual story of what happened somewhat confused. EA wasn't (and isn't) particularly interested in WCPGBA... Raylight basically 'tricked' them into releasing it - by signing on with another developed (Destination) who'd previously licensed EA's handheld rights (and could therefore do WCP GBA without EA corporate's approval).

Star Giants was a tech demo designed specifically to get EA's attention - Raylight wanted to develop WC1 for the GBA, and did the 'Star Giants' stuff to show that they could (they ultimately went with WCP after finding out that there were some rights issues with WC1).
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
Spien said:
But alas, this project apparently caught the attention of EA and Star Giants was retooled into Wing Commander Prophecy,

classic Wing Commander style, but I guess EA would've sued them if they had released the game without their permission since it's so similar, and I suppose EA thought they could make a quick buck if they said, "Hey why don't you turn this into a REAL Wing Commander game instead?"
You're making some off-base assumptions here. Raylight didn't work with EA at all. They publish games routinely through Destination Software, which has a license to publish old EA franchises on the GBA. Raylight sent us some additional information back before this happened
https://www.wcnews.com/news/update/4004
 
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Spien

Spaceman
Ah.. I see. I always kind of wondered exactly what happened. Anyway, even if it was just a tech demo. I would've rather seen something like Star Giants than Prophecy.
 

dextorboot

Spaceman
I don't know what the rights issue is but I wish they could take care of it so we could see WC I-IV on GBA. Either way, I'm glad we at least got Prophecy. I don't know how well it sold, but it'd be nice to get another one. By the way, it's $10 new at Gamestop if anyone out there doesn't have it.
 

Spien

Spaceman
I agree, I'm more impressed with the Star Giants graphics than the Prophecy ones even if they're "3D Sprites" instead of models. Not that Prophecy didn't have impressive graphics for the GBA, they were just too dark I think.
 

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
There's some rights stuff surrounding various elements of some of the pre-EA Origin titles. A lot of work was done by non-employees on a fairly unofficial basis - ie, "write me some music, I'll give you $500" and such. Since there were no official contracts, some artists can claim that they own the rights to the portions they did. It's not something that's a serious problem (since, in reality, no one cares) but it's enough to scare the people currently running EA from reissuing some stuff.

They actually did a big audit of what pre-EA artwork and music such was still used in Ultima Online... and then went back and payed off a bunch of people who had no idea what was going on.

(Re: Prophecy GBA. For my money, the graphics are freaking amazing - I'd never seen anything like that on a handheld before. Being too dark is just a problem with the first generation GBAs - ruins lots of games played on them.)
 

dextorboot

Spaceman
Bandit LOAF said:
Since there were no official contracts, some artists can claim that they own the rights to the portions they did.
I suppose they could just change whatever someone else could claim. I know purist probably wouldn't like that, but I wouldn't care at all. I also don't know if that's even worth it since it may be way more extensive than I'm thinking.


Bandit LOAF said:
Being too dark is just a problem with the first generation GBAs - ruins lots of games played on them.)
I know what you mean. Before I got my SP I hardly even realized there was a crowd in Fire Pro Wrestling.
 

Starkey

Avenging Rooster
Bandit LOAF said:
(Re: Prophecy GBA. For my money, the graphics are freaking amazing - I'd never seen anything like that on a handheld before. Being too dark is just a problem with the first generation GBAs - ruins lots of games played on them.)
I know, I have a first-generation GBA and WCP is really dark in it.

Nothing I can complain, though, I got the whole thing (GBA+WCP) for free at last year´s CIC Birthday :D :D :D
 

Spien

Spaceman
I have a first generation GBA as well, I never felt like throwing down the money for an SP when they came out. I spent the $99 they want for an SP on a Gamecube.
 

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
Well, then, get a GameBoy player and play WCPGBA on your TV!

(Seriously, I wasn't sure about getting a GBA SP, either... but it really, really is worth it. The ability to charge it like a cell phone, plus the backlight, plus the decreased size is pretty fantastic. I went from carrying my GBA with me on trips to having it with me everywhere I go.)
 

KrisV

Administrator
The SP is a huge improvement over the original GBA in many ways. (Backlight, built-in Lithium battery, classier design) I didn't play much until I got an SP. Being able to see makes all the difference.
 

dextorboot

Spaceman
To save some of the cost you might want to consider trading in your GBA for the SP. You won't get much, but it's definitely worth it. After I got one, I was kicking myself for waiting so long.
 

Anxiety

Rear Admiral
I didn't play much until I got an SP (I didn't have one and didn't want one). Even now that I have one I still don't play much. I got it specifically so I can get Prophecy, having never played it for the computer. Now I wish I would have waited so I could get the NES SP.
 

Spien

Spaceman
Yes I understand how much better it is, a friend of mine has one. I'll get a GBA SP when the Nintendo DS is out and they go down in price, or I'll just get a Nintendo DS.
 
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