This week the Wing Commander 3 community replay crew takes on the Loki and Alcor mission series. Last week Tolwyn revealed his plan for ending the war, and now players will have to protect the ill-fated Behemoth during its test run in the Loki system. Here are DaveO's notes from Caliban and Torgo:
I find Flint in gunnery control, and she says it must feel like an old time reunion with both the Admiral and Prince Thrakhath. Flint apologizes after seeing my reaction and realizes that she knows who I’m really thinking about after checking about my history. She correctly identifies Angel as my concern, and I ask her when she decided to look at pilot histories. She admits that this was her weapon when growing up, and that her research gave her an edge. She also knows about my frequent crossing of paths with the Admiral. I admit that it’s more of a confrontation where Tolwyn is concerned, and the Admiral makes it his goal to know the history of pilots he meets. Tolwyn has no quibbles about using rules and regulations, and Flint and I agree that he does not know the human heart as well as he could. I head down to the flight level, and see the Admiral in the briefing room along with Captain Eisen.
The Admiral explains that we’re here to rendezvous with ‘destiny’, and I find that this destiny is with a massive ship called the Behemoth. It’s a super ship with one function: destruction of planets with Kilrah as the obvious target. The Behemoth has not had the time to get fully operational, so it has been pressed into service earlier than expected. This is due to the successful war effort the Kilrathi have been making, so there is little choice in the matter. Either deploy the weapon now or risk the cats conquering Earth in six months or less. The defenses of the Behemoth are thin in certain areas due to the accelerated deployment so it will need extra protection against attack. Tolwyn receives a communication message during the briefing, and he tells us that the Kilrathi are attempting to spoil any attempt to use the Behemoth. I’m given orders to scramble all fighters, so it’s a magnum launch in an Arrow. Flint is along as my wingman, and I do get enough time to make my standard launch adjustments.
- Community Replay - General Discussion
- WC1 Week 1 - Enyo, McAuliffe, Gimle, Gateway, Cheng-du
- WC1 Week 2 - Brimstone, Dakota, Kurasawa, Rostov, Port Hedland, Hubble's Star
- WC1 Week 3 - Venice, Hell's Kitchen, Alternate Paths
- Secret Missions Week 1 - Goddard, Border Zone, Midgard
- Secret Missions Week 2 - Jotunheim, Bifrost
- Secret Missions Week 3 - Valgard, Vigrid
- SM2: Crusade Week 1 - Firekka
- SM2: Crusade Week 2 - Corsair, Near Firekka
- SM2: Crusade Week 3 - Corsair, Charon
- WC2 Week 1 - Gwenydd, Niven
- WC2 Week 2 - Niven, Ghorah Khar
- WC2 Week 3 - Novaya Kiev, Heaven's Gate
- WC2 Week 4 - Heaven's Gate, Tesla
- WC2 Week 5 - Enigma
- WC2 Week 6 - K'tithrak Mang
- SO1 Week 1 - Pembroke
- SO1 Week 2 - Rigel
- SO1 Week 3 - Ghorah Khar 1
- SO1 Week 4 - Ghorah Khar 2
- SO2 Week 1 - Canewdon 1
- SO2 Week 2 - Canewdon 2
- SO2 Week 3 - Canewdon 3
- SO2 Week 4 - Ayer's Rock
- WC3 Week 1 - Orsini
- WC3 Week 2 - Tamayo, Locanda
- WC3 Week 3 - Blackmane, Ariel/Delius
- WC3 Week 4 - Caliban, Torgo
- WC3 Week 5 - Loki, Alcor
This is the Star*Soldier gloss for the second Joan's page:
CONCEPT: I didn't have much (if any) control over the specifications - most of them come directly from the game. I had some leeway with the length and mass, but since they're classic Wing Commander fighters... not much. Note the increasing mass as the ships become 'fatter' (more armored) - that's something the game's Producer remembered to include. I will admit that even though this was a 'virtual' manual, it suffers from the same problem as the Origin booklets did: since I couldn't play the game regularly during its final balancing and since the development team was so busy with more important things the specifications aren't always exactly right. The ship images are all from Arena screenshots -- with all sorts of bits of text and background photoshopped out!
Coming up with material here was actually something of a challenge. I wrote 'flavor' blurbs for these ships about four times - once for the game, once for the manual, once for a gaming site article and once for the EA Arcade site (most weren't used). I insisted on trying to include a different 'fact' each time, which is harder than it sounds. (I will also refer everyone who insists that Joan's doesn't have text descriptions to the Terran Confederation Handbook.)
REFERENCES-"F-27" - This is probably the first piece of Wing Commander history I ever created. I helped develop some of the in-game flavor text and was asked for a designation for the Arrow to make it look like the other two Confederation ships (which already had F-44 and A-17). I came up with F-27 on the spot, leaving it early enough to predate most of the '2660s' Confederationf ighters. I will note that I also vetoed using movie-based 'KF-XXX' designations for the Kilrathi ships. The especially anal details should be reserved for manuals, not the part of the game everyone has to play.
Joan's Logo (Upper Left) - Looks like we didn't make them all orange. It does seem pretty close to the 'real thing'.
"Arrow V," "Douglas Aerospace" - See my notes on the inside cover for this history.
"last half century" - Refers to the Arrow's appearance in the pilot episode of Wing Commander Academy.
"Orbital Racing Competitions" - This was an 'expand the game' reference. My distant hope was that someone would pick it up and start racing fighters in Arena maps. As far as I know, no one has done this.
"CAG" - A slight reference to CAG Drake from Prophecy. Generally an acknowledgement of the term, which is less popular than 'Wing Commander'.
"Captured Kilrathi Technology," "Black Ops ship" - I happened to hear someone at Gaia explain how they wanted to suggest that the Arrow Eclipse was built with stolen Kilrathi technology by giving it a cloaking device and Kilrathi missiles (which is absolutely an awesome level of thought to put into the game on their part). I personally wanted to tie it to the cloaking Arrows in Wing Commander IV, but I had to make sure I respected that backstory as well.
"deployment of early model guardians" - This is another explanation for an 'annoying movie complaint'; obviously, the appearance of a "skipper missile" at the film's climax. For the record, I do realize that this makes absolutely no sense. "Arrow Guardian did it" can be Wing Commander's equivalent of "Wizard did it".