Wing Commander Prophecy lead designer Billy Cain recently opened a window into video gaming history that will be of interest to long time Wing Commander and Origin fans. While going through his old files, Billy found some of his old emails dating back to his Origin Systems days. He posted his resignation Letter on his blog.
While it's perhaps a somber reminder of the downfall of the once great developer, there's a lot of interesting tidbits in there and references to games that were never released (see Cyclone Alley, and Prowler). Of note, the Origin team that was tasked with working on console ports, including the long lost WC2 for the SNES was dubbed (perhaps unofficially) 'Origin Siberia'. You can read the entire letter here or on Billy's blog
I was one of the first employees when EA bought us, and since I had been trying to get a job here for over a year, I knew exactly what I was getting into. I knew that Strike Commander was going to take a lot longer than EA expected, and I knew that crunch mode was going to be a mantra for years to come. I didn't care. I wanted to be part of a fantastic organization that allowed people to follow their dreams. I wanted to be surrounded by the smartest people I had ever met, creating games and universes that lived and breathed on their own. I got the job thanks to Mike Sims and a need on the Super Nintendo team run by Alan Gardner. We were known as Origin Siberia, since the 'real' teams were in another building, working on PC products.
...I had to return to Austin.
Upon coming back, I got a position working with Eric Hyman as an Associate Producer. I worked with Paul Steed on Cyclone Alley and then with Paul Isaac on Prowler. Neither projects managed to ship, but I learned a lot about helping people and how much I needed to learn about calming down.