Wing Commander RPG

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Here's a question: are there any deck plans out there for any of the Confed ships (like the Venture or Bengal-class)? Doesn't matter if they're fan-made or not.
 

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
I am interested in Kilrathi names; thanks for the link. Are any of them fan-created, to your knowledge? Probably will ignore the movie (though that's pretty much because I don't know where I can find a copy), and I can always dig the ones out of the Arena documentation myself.

That list is all 'canon' Kilrathi names. The movie material sticks with the classic 'X nar Y' formula and there aren't many... but someday I need to go through those books and add them.

What's been the consensus around here on the usage of "nar" in Kilrathi names? As far as I can tell, its either used to identify one's clan or one's planet of origin. Are their any instances where it's used in a Kilrathi name to indicate their profession? If so, that would make it pretty much identical to the old Japanese "no".

"hrai" of course is used to indicate family, though the only time I've ever seen it used as part of a Kilrathi name has been in the novels (Freedom Flight and I think False Colors, and I seem to recall the usage was slightly different between the two).

Ahhh! Good question.

The lexicon in the Kilrathi Saga claims that the nar is part of every name and "precedes the name of the planet on which the kil's hrai (clan) originated." it gives the xample of Ralgha nar Hhallas whose hrai was from Hhallas. It does not reference profession, but it does determine social standing--because the clans have an implicit order of nobility, from the Emperor's Kiranka down through the eight noble clans and then on to all the others.

Although the official text says planet, I'm thinking it's not that specific. Kirha's goofy name, afterall, was "nar Aussie" rather than "nar Earth"... and the conflicts between the eight noble clans predate access to space, anyway, so it's unlikely that there's a "Kur'u'tak" or a "Sihkag" world somewhere (at least, not predating the name).

My take on the 'hrai' bit is that it's part of every name but that it's not normally spoken. Kirha is usually just "Kirha" and not Kirha hrai Ralgha nar Hhallas.

There are a few problems with the 'every name' bit, too. It's never explicitly stated, but there do seem to be some Kilrathi who explicitly do NOT have the 'nar'. For example, Fireclaw is always written as "Najji Ragitagha" instead of Najji nar Ragitagha (also, think of Dawx Jhorrad, a kil without a liege-lord in False Colors). There's no specific background on why that is, though.

... then there's False Colors, which upset the system a bit by adding a whole slew of additional modifiers (and never explaining them). (And then Ragargk's full name is "Ukar dai Ragark lak Haka" and he hopes to start the Haka dynasty... and Murragh's full name is Murragh Cakg dai Nokhtak... and his uncle was Largka Cakg dai Nokhtak. So... figure that all out.)

Another odd one--Action Stations claims that the son of Baron Jukaga nar Ki'ra is Baron Vakka nar Jukaga.

I don't suppose there are any name lists for any of the other races out there...I mean, Freedom Flight gives four Firekkan names (Rikik, Kree'kai, K'Kai and Laarhi), but to my knowledge that's it.

Honestly I can't think of any aliens with names. One of the Dolosians on Academy was "Vidkun"... but that's all I can think of off hand.

Here's a question: are there any deck plans out there for any of the Confed ships (like the Venture or Bengal-class)? Doesn't matter if they're fan-made or not.

As far as I know, only for the movie version of the Tiger's Claw, which has both some deck plans in The Confederation Handbook and this awesome cutaway poster: https://cdn.wcnews.com/newestshots/full/FINTigerClaw2.jpg
 
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capi3101

Rear Admiral
That list is all 'canon' Kilrathi names.

Okay...that's good to know.

The lexicon in the Kilrathi Saga claims that the nar is part of every name and "precedes the name of the planet on which the kil's hrai (clan) originated." it gives the xample of Ralgha nar Hhallas whose hrai was from Hhallas. It does not reference profession, but it does determine social standing--because the clans have an implicit order of nobility, from the Emperor's Kiranka down through the eight noble clans and then on to all the others.

Although the official text says planet, I'm thinking it's not that specific. Kirha's goofy name, afterall, was "nar Aussie" rather than "nar Earth"... and the conflicts between the eight noble clans predate access to space, anyway, so it's unlikely that there's a "Kur'u'tak" or a "Sihkag" world somewhere (at least, not predating the name).

My take on the 'hrai' bit is that it's part of every name but that it's not normally spoken. Kirha is usually just "Kirha" and not Kirha hrai Ralgha nar Hhallas.

There are a few problems with the 'every name' bit, too. It's never explicitly stated, but there do seem to be some Kilrathi who explicitly do NOT have the 'nar'. For example, Fireclaw is always written as "Najji Ragitagha" instead of Najji nar Ragitagha (also, think of Dawx Jhorrad, a kil without a liege-lord in False Colors). There's no specific background on why that is, though.

... then there's False Colors, which upset the system a bit by adding a whole slew of additional modifiers (and never explaining them). (And then Ragargk's full name is "Ukar dai Ragark lak Haka" and he hopes to start the Haka dynasty... and Murragh's full name is Murragh Cakg dai Nokhtak... and his uncle was Largka Cakg dai Nokhtak. So... figure that all out.)

Another odd one--Action Stations claims that the son of Baron Jukaga nar Ki'ra is Baron Vakka nar Jukaga.

For the most part, that does follow the usage of "no", which was in every Japanese name right up to the end of the Muromachi period (about the same time as the Sengoku period). The Kil are very heavily modeled on the the Imperial Japanese, so this makes sense.

"no" was sometimes used to denote a person's province of origin. I suppose in the case of the cats, this could either indicate their home planet (which would likely be considered "provinces" of a vast interstellar empire) or perhaps a region on Kilrah. Kirha asked Paladin what planet Hunter was from, and Paladin told him what country he was from (sorta), but in that case "Aussie" still would've fit (though perhaps it would've been been "nar Australia"). No reason why clan names couldn't also be part of the same naming scheme; clans are folk who claim an actual or perceived kinship.

"no" was also commonly used to denote one's occupation, or locational terms (like saying you were (somebody) of the mountain, or near the river, that sort of thing). That's why I asked.

The Japanese sometimes had nicknames associated with them (epithets I suppose is a better word). Najji Ragitagha may be a similar case (Najji being his true name and Ragitagha being an epithet). The aces listed in Claw Marks all appear to be the same way, at least at a glance.

Most surnames in the world today are either patronymic in origin, or denote an occupation once performed by all members of the family. In some parts of Scandinavia, people still derive their last name from that of their father. Hence Vakka nar Jukaga...though that does seem to be a deviation from the normal usage of the "nar" term.

False Colors...False Colors......(never liked that damn novel to begin with; not nearly as exciting as the others, IMHO)..........only thing I can think of there is that some of the cats might've abandoned the "nar" system with the destruction of Kilrah (and that's a pretty big stretch; the Japanese didn't abandon their naming conventions after the end of WWII). I'll need to re-read that crappy novel, I guess. Perhaps "dai" and "lak" are terms used by non-nobles? I don't know. It may be a significant enough deviation from the rest of the WC universe to completely ignore.

Honestly I can't think of any aliens with names. One of the Dolosians on Academy was "Vidkun"... but that's all I can think of off hand.

Yeah, I was already pretty sure I was going to have to wing it. Thanks anyway.

As far as I know, only for the movie version of the Tiger's Claw, which has both some deck plans in The Confederation Handbook and this awesome cutaway poster: https://cdn.wcnews.com/newestshots/full/FINTigerClaw2.jpg

Darn. It would've been pretty cool to see what some folk thought the inside of some of the other ships looked like.

Might have to do some myself, or at least get some help with it. I already calculated the overall dimensions of the Tiger's Claw and Concordia based on their silhouettes (from Claw Marks and the WC2 documentation) and using their lengths as an indicator of the scale involved...Tiger's Claw is (overall) 700 m long by 389.11 m in beam by 250.94 m in draught. Concordia is (overall) 983.7 m long by 460.96 m in beam by 356.41 m in draught. That's a good starting point, anyway.
 
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capi3101

Rear Admiral
Another question: what's the largest fighter craft in the entire continuity of the WC universe? I'm trying to adjust my sizing scale for fighter chassis from the SF system. While we're at it, what's the smallest? Been going off the silhouettes; trying to figure out bounding box dimensions.

Re-phrased question: I think the smallest fighter in the WC universe is the Ferret, and the largest is the Broadsword. Am I wrong?
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Anybody got an idea as to the length of the Bloodfang in WC3? The Vaktoth came awfully close to the overall bounding box dimensions of the Broadsword, and I want to say that the Bloodfang is a larger fighter than the Vaktoth, but I can't find any source that mentions how big it actually is.
 

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
I think the smallest is the KF-227 Salthi at 6.5 meters. Largest is harder to figure; I think the Lance is longest at 40 meters and the Broadsword is most massive at 100 tones... but I bet something like the super wide Gladius is technically "biggest".

No canonical stars for the Bloodfang, sorry.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
I think the smallest is the KF-227 Salthi at 6.5 meters. Largest is harder to figure; I think the Lance is longest at 40 meters and the Broadsword is most massive at 100 tones... but I bet something like the super wide Gladius is technically "biggest".

Hmm......the vast majority of sources say the Salthi is 24 meters long, besides one in the CIC ship database marked "Handbook". Which handbook is this referring to?

Nice to finally know that those are Salthis the Retros are flying in Righteous Fire. All this time I thought they were Shoklars.

The Lance (the WC4 cluebook refers to this craft as the Dragon, BTW) is the longest fighter I've found so far. It's got a relatively shallow draught, though; its bounding box volume comes in about 11,000 cubic meters lower than the Broadsword.

Gladius...which version, the one from Privateer or the one from Armada? Haven't done the math on them either way. I've got a source (Secrets of the Wing Commander Universe by Mark Minasi, published by Sybex, copyright 1994, ISBN 0782115055) saying the Privateer one is only 12.5 meters long.

No canonical stars for the Bloodfang, sorry.

Damn. Add that one to the list of craft that are going to be problematic...like pretty much everything from the Prophecy era (lengths I have; side and top-down aspects of each craft I have not).
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Math's done on the Gladius...throw up my notes and then explain them.

Gladius - Privateer
12.6 m
204 340 = 136 ==> 12.60m
519 545 = 26 ==> 2.41m
420 648 = 228 ==> 21.12m
bb = 641.33 m^3

Gladius - Armada
36m
760 930 = 170 ==> 36.00m
565 591 = 26 ==> 5.51m
939 1236 = 297 ==> 62.89m
bb = 12474.86 m^3

Okay...for these two I used the image from the CIC ship's database; the Privateer documentation only gave me one aspect and Voices of War only had a composite image (no aspects). The numbers for both fighters are listed in the order of length-draught-beam (wingspan if you prefer). The inital set of numbers are pixel locations. For example, the aft end of the Privateer Gladius was at pixel x=204, the fore end was at x=340, using the side aspect image. After the equals sign is the difference between the two numbers, representing distance covered along that single axis. Assuming the images are to scale (and there shouldn't be any reason to suspect otherwise), a conversion mutiplier is calculated based on the reported length of the craft and the distance along the length axis. For example, for the Armada Gladius, the conversion factor used is (36 meters / 170 pixels). The draught and beam values are calculated by this same conversion factor, allowing me to arrive at those figures in meters as well. Finally, bb represents the "bounding box", and is simply the value of length-times-draught-times-beam. It's this final bounding box I'm talking about when I want to know a craft's size.

Both craft came up short in the largest craft department. It's true the Armada Gladius has the largest wingspan of any craft I've seen so far; it's a good 20 meters in wingspan longer than the next closest competitor I could think of, the Jalthi, and has the largest wingspan of any craft I've calculated so far. What knocks it out of contention is its very shallow draught...one of the lowest I've seen.

I should also do the Armada Banshee...hey, it's 43 meters long; longer than the Dragon/Lance. Also might have an impressive wingspan.

Actually, what I should really do is learn the designation numbers for these craft, so I can stop referring to them by what game they were in.

If that 12.6 meter length for the Privateer Gladius is correct, it's actually one of the smallest fighters in the WC Universe, coming up only about 400 cubic meters larger than the Ferret. I should do the Salthi with that 6.2 meter figure; I'd be interested in the results......
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Alright...I've got a couple of new leaders on both ends.

The KF-227 Salthi at 6.2 meters came up with a bounding box volume of 164.22 m^3, with dimensions of 6.2 x 3.25 x 8.15. Interesting find, but I don't think a Kil is going to be squeezing into a machine that's barely taller than they are...I'm inclined to ignore this one. Particularly since even though it's 55 cubic meters smaller than the P-64 Ferret, it'd be enough of a change to force me to make more changes to the size class ranges for fightercraft. The 24 meter long Salthi somes up at 24 x 12.58 x 31.54, with a bounding box of 9522.56 m^3, which is fairly large; about three times the overall size of an F-36 Hornet. It's the wingspan on that one...

The A-20 Banshee...damn. Thing blew pretty much everything out of the water. It's calculated dimensions are 43.00 x 9.39 x 79.34, with a bounding box of 32,035.11 cubic meters. That makes it the longest fighter, the fighter with the largest wingspan, and the fightercraft with the largest overall bounding box so far; a good 8000 cubic meters over the A-17 Broadsword and a little over a third of the size of a Venture-class corvette...

I may do the Goran next, since it's the Kilrathi counterpart to the Banshee. Just to see......nope. A good 11,000 m^3 lower than the Banshee. Not even close. Not surprising; it's a more compact shape.

Good news is that the Banshee does not represent a new upper bound for fightercraft; less work for me...
 

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
Hmm......the vast majority of sources say the Salthi is 24 meters long, besides one in the CIC ship database marked "Handbook". Which handbook is this referring to?

This is "The Confederation Handbook," which is basically the manual for the movie. All the ships are shorter since they had actual sets to measure (as I'm sure you've gathered, there are some inconsistencies in ship sizes between games.)

Nice to finally know that those are Salthis the Retros are flying in Righteous Fire. All this time I thought they were Shoklars.

Heh, yeah--if you dissect Righteous Fire you'll find they're stored in "SALTHI.IFF". (The 3D model was originally the Salthi in Super Wing Commander, and then reused for Righteous Fire and Armada. RF actually came before the Shok'lar was created in real life terms. Makes more sense in-universe, anyway, that the Kilrathi are selling off old Salthi instead of top of the line cloaking birds.)

The Lance (the WC4 cluebook refers to this craft as the Dragon, BTW) is the longest fighter I've found so far. It's got a relatively shallow draught, though; its bounding box volume comes in about 11,000 cubic meters lower than the Broadsword.

Lance is the proper name of the fighter (it's a development of the Excalibur)--Dragon was a callsign used by Tolwyn's forces that became the common name (sort of like how the Thunderbolt II is called the Warthog in real life).

Gladius...which version, the one from Privateer or the one from Armada? Haven't done the math on them either way. I've got a source (Secrets of the Wing Commander Universe by Mark Minasi, published by Sybex, copyright 1994, ISBN 0782115055) saying the Privateer one is only 12.5 meters long.

Secrets of the Wing Commander Universe is actually an unofficial guide--he just came up with the numbers he didn't have himself. GREAT book, but not 'canon'.

Damn. Add that one to the list of craft that are going to be problematic...like pretty much everything from the Prophecy era (lengths I have; side and top-down aspects of each craft I have not).

Prophecy actually has a litte ship viewer in it where you can rotate the models, IIRC.

I should also do the Armada Banshee...hey, it's 43 meters long; longer than the Dragon/Lance. Also might have an impressive wingspan.

Gah, I forgot about the Armada heavies--yeah, they're longer than the Lance.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
This is "The Confederation Handbook," which is basically the manual for the movie. All the ships are shorter since they had actual sets to measure (as I'm sure you've gathered, there are some inconsistencies in ship sizes between games.)

I see...leaves me with a decision to make, then.

Heh, yeah--if you dissect Righteous Fire you'll find they're stored in "SALTHI.IFF". (The 3D model was originally the Salthi in Super Wing Commander, and then reused for Righteous Fire and Armada). RF actually came before the Shok'lar was created in real life terms. Makes more sense in-universe, anyway, that the Kilrathi are selling off old Salthi instead of top of the line cloaking birds.)

So they used the same model for the Super Wing Commander Salthi, the Righteous Fire Salthi, and the Armada Shoklar? That would definitely explain my confusion there...

Secrets of the Wing Commander Universe is actually an unofficial guide--he just came up with the numbers he didn't have himself. GREAT book, but not 'canon'.

Okay...so I can ignore that length if I so choose.

I do wonder if I should base some of the fighter maneuverability ratings off of the figures from that book, though. I seem to recall he got those through direct observation. Some of the official figures have those fighters as being no more maneuverable than some of the capships.


Prophecy actually has a litte ship viewer in it where you can rotate the models, IIRC.

Really? That could be extremely helpful. I just re-discovered my Prophecy disks last weekend; now I've got a definite impetus for trying the game out again.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
I've been busy the last couple of days working on other projects; haven't had much time to get things done with the RPG.

I've also've been drooling over the stuff y'all posted for WC's 13th birthday. How much of that material is public domain (i.e. how many of those pics can I snatch and later put in WCRPG without the risk of getting sued)?

While I'm posting, I might as well ask a legitimate question: in regards to Privateer 2, how exactly does it tie in to the rest of the Wing Commander timeline? I mean, is the Tri-System supposed to be part of the Confederation, does the Confederation still exist, are the Cats ever mentioned anywhere in the game things like that. Is that information out there anywhere? Been a very long time since I've played the game and I remember it being a little too noir for my taste.
 

NinjaLA

Alex Von T.
are you planning on charging for this? if not.. the odds are pretty good you aren't going to get sued.

Tri-system is in the same universe, but it's 100 years later and isolated.. so not really something you need to worry over for a traditional RPG.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
are you planning on charging for this? if not.. the odds are pretty good you aren't going to get sued.
Well, I plan to release the final versions the same way as SFRPG; there'll be a PDF version that'll be a free download, and a hardcopy version that will have some cost to it, though there will be no profit margin involved (i.e. the price will simply cover the cost of manufacture).

Tri-system is in the same universe, but it's 100 years later and isolated.. so not really something you need to worry over for a traditional RPG.

Hmm......I kinda hope to build something where people could play in any time period they wanted to in the universe. Might just have to see how things go.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Alright...finished stealing everything I plan to take from the 13th birthday stuff. I'm happy that I'll have some actual in-universe artwork; that's one department SFRPG was sorely lacking in.

More questions: I never read the novelization of the movie, nor did I ever read Pilgrim Stars. I'm a little ashamed to say that they are the only two Wing Commander novels to see print that are not part of my private collection. Would there happen to be somewhere on the WCNews site where I might be able to order said novels, or am I going to be relegated to an eBay/used bookstore type of search?

Actually, I can think of one place here in town that might be able to help me out...

Picked up the epub version of Pilgrim Truth amongst today's carnage. Is its plot dependent on anything that happened in Pilgrim Stars? If so, can someone give me a quick synopsis of that book?

With all the Privateer 2 stuff up, I couldn't help but snag some of it. Pretty much sets it in stone that I'll have some elements from P2 in WCRPG. Now how to link P2 with the continuity you see in Arena......I have an idea; it wouldn't be canon, of course. Probably should see if its necessary or not before I mention it to y'all (and then y'all can tell me if its contradicted anywhere). Geez, I'm being vague here...
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Been doing some work on WCRPG these last couple of days. I've got the traits list translated over on the wiki at this point, and I've started work on a mini-game to test out the combat systems. That's about halfway along so far, and I've already got what I think is a good working fix to account for differences between how things are done in the two universes (Starflight vs. Wing Commander). I even have an translated set of abbreviated stats for three WC fighters now, the Scimitar, the Hornet and the Jalthi (I needed two of them to write out an attack example). I'm currently trying to decide how I want to make missile decoys work.

Tried Standoff last night for the first time; I am totally blown away by it. I can easily see why it has won project of the year from CIC so many times. I do think flying a Stiletto sucks (now that I've had the opportunity)......also can't report much success with their version of a Hornet. The Morningstar, however, is as fun to fly as I remember it from WC2:SO2.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Had an idea for handling pirate loot last night. Basically, what they cough up (haven't decided if this will be set during an encounter or while the encounter is being planned yet) is dependent on a series of die throws. One to determine if they cough something up, another to determine what they cough up, and a third to determine how much. Leads me to my next question: for the commodities in Privateer and Righteous Fire, has anyone ever compiled a list of what commodities fall into what categories? I know there are only ten of them (Food, Raw Materials, Processed Goods, Capital Goods, Microelectronics, Luxury Goods, Contraband, Weaponry, Advanced Fuels and Special); I'm curious if there's a complete list of what goods go where.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Never mind - I finished up the list myself last night. I figure, though, that it might be good information to add to the WCPedia (a line that says something like "Privateer/Righteous Fire Category: xx" below the main tables or something).
 
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