WC2 is my all around favorite followed very marginally by WC3, and WC1 (especially sm2) Gameplay-wise secretops is one of the best, yet I feel WC 2 has the best all around balance of story, gameplay etc. But there's of couse various touches that make WC special in it's own right.
Wing Commander 2 definitly my favorite. The story is great. Its a truley classic game that is still great to today's standards. Gameplay is still done very nicely and it accessible to people. Just for example. My friend had never played anything with a joystick before. He didn't like WC1 that much. He played Wing 2 and Loved it. It controlled well for him and he couldn't tear away from the story.
Wing 3, 4 are also close behind. Gotta love Hamill and Wilson, a surprisingly good combination.
I can't pick one... It's all one "universe" after all and I love them all!!! Since they bring back memories of old. I can still remember my mother telling her friends "it's better that hes interested in computers then drugs and such" boy was she wronge since WC was the reason I commited my first feloney. Ironicaly I lost all of my WC games after that too.
I think WC1 and I'm 12 playing on the old SNES. After that I was hooked. Went back to Electronics Botique and begged the guy for another hit and got Secret Missions. Wrent home and finished it staying up till 4 in the morning. Then I went back again and again!
Spent a few months babysitting and saving and my math/computer club teacher helped me build my first computer from scratch.
Hasd to have them all (wc games) and went on a hunt. I couldn't play any of the games yet on my still uncomleted pc but I spent MONTHS reading and re-reading the manuals.
I can't just pick one game since Wing Commander to me is one a single "universe" and one very big game that none can compare with. You have to play all the games and maybe the books aswell after all to get a full grasp of the full storyline and history of WC and it only leaves you wanting more. I'm still pineing for more WC books or hell even a WC remake (like KS) only with updated graphics. That would be super sweet. To play through from the very beginning of the war (pre WC1) to the end of...well it should never end!!!!! The graphics in WC1 maybe dated but the feeling you get playing shouldn't change. It would be nice to get pre-Kilrahi war stuff in there too. The story from the start of the Confederation to the Pilgrim wars and so on...though many including myself are like what the hell is a Pilgrim??? One continuouse timeline of games...i'd trade my son for that...or a least lend him out to get something like that.
The problem with junkies is that they always want more. Been playing through the WC replay and reading the books again to coinside with the timeline. It's just getting better and better. I love them all! ...with the exeption of the darkening...though a little nudity hear and there was cool.
I'd say WC 1 very closely followed by WC 2 (and sometimes I think I like WC 2 better than WC 1, it's really tough to decide). For gameplay fun alone, it's WCP.
But I can say with certainity that I liked WC 3 the least, though of course, I still like it very much.
My favourite WC game out of all the games that I have would be WC4. The Win95 upgrade really improved framerate, and I was able to get the full experience of the FMVs. Not a single one crashed, skipped or stopped immediately (Unlike C&C). Also, 90% of the missions I played had a very interesting "twist" to them.
The Heart of the Tiger was the first Wing Commander game I played, then The Price of Freedom followed by Prophecy. After that I went back to the very beginning and played all of them from beginning to end, Armada and Secret Mission and Ops, etc. In the end though, The Price of Freedom takes top honors in my book, the plot transcends all time, gripping you from start to finish. Also, Admiral Tolwyn is just so delightfully evil that in the end it saddens you just a little.
I would say that Secret Missions 2 was my favorite; for all the amazing things Wing Commander did in terms of completely reinventing itself for various purposes, I think it shined the best when it was perfecting an existing structure. Secret Missions 2 takes the skeleton of Wing Commander I and uses those limitations to build a better mousetrap -- one with a more compelling personal story, one that adds emotion and depth to characters and so forth.
This is a TOUGH question. Having played WC1, SM1, WC3, WC4, WCP, and WCSO.. I think I'd say Wing Commander Standoff is my favorite! I guess we're talking about 'official' games, so I'd say it's between WC3 and WC4. I think I liked WC3 the best since it was the dramatic conclusion of the Kilrathi War. Also, it's more pleasurable to shoot down Kilrathi who are bent on destroying humanity than it is to shoot down humans who are mostly unwitting pawns of an organization bent on destroying people they deem inferior.
I think WC4 might have more replayability though due to the different choices you can make that drastically change the story and missions. I also thought it was neat to go up against Confed. The other thing I liked was the perceived realism.. where your ship was about as powerful (or even inferior) as the enemy ships and some of your wingmen were about as skilled as the enemy pilots.. even your more skilled wingmen could be taken down by an enemy ace or even an average pilot after their afterburners ran out.
So in short.. WC3 is my favorite... wait.. make that WC4... no WC3.. final answer (for now)
maybe its because it was the first i played, or because it was the right combination of spaceships and cutesy animation and story at the age i was (9 or 10) or maybe it was just the best game - ~~~ i gave up trying to figure it out ages ago, but either way its WCII, the story is like a mini movie between each mission (not like the others where you have to seek it out and can miss bits or view in the wrong order), the missions are genius, the ships are all great and just generally its awesome. plus it has that ace trailer with a slightly different opening