An Elegy for Sivar, also known as "Elegy" for short, is the latest WCRPG module currently under development. It is intended to be the WCRPG system's first full-fledged campaign setting, set in the year 2680 in a region of space known as Epsilon Sector. In addition to the campaign setting, a pre-published full-sized campaign will be included. The campaign tells the story of Krahtagh "Bloodeye" N'Ryllis, a Kilrathi pirate whose demise is chronicled in the documentation of Wing Commander: Prophecy. The main plot-line of the campaign will chronicle the activities of N'Ryllis's group, the Demon's Eye Pack, as they attempt to re-build Kilrathi society. The main campaign will has a total of 44 individual adventures planned, though it is structured such that only 16 of these missions comprise the main plot. The module will include enough additional data that player groups will be able to develop their own adventures within the setting. One final and unique feature of the guide will be a Kilrathi lexicon.
Alright - so this is a game, right? Why is this on Kickstarter under Art Projects?
That's a good question with a simple answer: the purpose of the Kickstarter project is not to fund the development of the campaign guide itself. Rather, the goal of the campaign is to fund the artwork that will appear in it. The artist I hope to hire to do the cover art for the project is none other than Denis Loubet.
Ok, so the plan right now is to get the Kilrathi as a playable faction ASAP to release the 2.0 version of the mod for every ody to enjoy both in Skirmish and in online multiplayer. No date promised, but I'll try to get it done fast.
If you heard about a really nice textured model of the Vesuvius, Bearcat, Dragon/Lance or any Border Worlds craft, please give me the contact info of the creator to see if I can use it.
Wvlfy goes back in time to face a more terrifying foe than the Kilrathi: Farking Asteroids!
In space, noone can hear you meow.
Beginning his tour of duty aboard the Tiger's Claw in the Vega system, Christopher "Maverick" Blair takes part in an ongoing campaign against the Kilrathi, a race of tiger-like beings hellbent on using the Terran homeworlds as planet-sized litterboxes. It's up to you, the player, to declaw the Kilrathi and put those cats out for the night.
Terry was a friend and a fan. He had gone into survivalist mode when he read Lucifer’s Hammer, and came to the scenes where the survivors are discussing the old civilization. He said it made think, why be miserable when we have civilization. Better to try and keep it. After that he wrote at a prodigious pace. One day he was in Hollywood negotiating a movie, and came over for lunch. I showed him Wing Commander, he liked it, and I gave it to him as a present, remarking that this was a cheap way to slow the competition. He get addicted to it, but far from slowing his legendary output he produced even more. Wing Commander and its sequel Privateer were amusing interludes between the torrent of pages.
I have not seen him since his illness, because I have not been to Britain in many years. I fondly remember our last dinner in London. I wish we could repeat it. Our guest as Jack Cohen, and it was an experience worth repeating. Farewell, old friend. RIP
Fans have long been intrigued by the differences posed by Super Wing Commander. Ostensibly a remake of the original Wing Commander with newer graphics, the games' smattering of familiar fighters has much confusing crossover with ship models used in very different roles throughout Privateer and Armada. And while WC1 and The Secret Missions were pretty faithfully recreated in the new engine, SM2 was replaced by a brand new intermediate campaign where the Tiger's Claw seeks out and destroys the shipyards that spawned the Sivar Dreadnought. This special expansion, dubbed "Secret Missions 1.5" by fans, adds quite a bit of new story while borrowing a few elements from the original SM2 that help set up Wing Commander 2. To top it all off, the game was only made for older OS Macintoshes and the Panasonic 3DO, so few Wingnuts have actually played through it first hand.
This is about bringing the Secret Missions 2 campaign from Super Wing Commander and 3DO, known as Secret Missions 1.5, to the PC.
For a start, I'll just make the files available here that have been converted 1:1 from the 3DO version. That's possible due to the awesome work of UnnamedCharacter and many others who paved the way. The zip file contains a readme file with all necessary information and instructions.
So, by downloading and installing this zip file to your Wing Commander I, Secret Missions 2 installation, you should be able to play the full SWC Secret Missions 2 campaign, which is commonly referred to here on the forums as Secret Missions 1.5.
Unpack the zip file into the GAMEDAT subdirectory of your Wing Commander installation.
Execute the file "toSM15.bat" (or just "toSM15" in case file extensions are hidden)
The files should be renamed accordingly, continue at "STARTING THE GAME" below.
For playing the original SM2 campaign, execute "toSM2.bat".
STARTING THE GAME
Execute SM2.EXE and start the game as usual.
When you talk to Shotglass and he is NOT talking about the Firekka, you seem to have done everything right.
Enjoy and please give feedback at the forums.
Here is the reissue of Oldies Games TV #13. OGTV's subject was Wing Commander 4 on CD-ROM PC, but the game on DVD is only in English. But for your enjoyment I remade the show with videos from the DVD version and the sound of the CD release. A new way to enjoy Wing Commander 4 ... Bon visionage
There are a few cockpit oddities in the WC1 file titled "PILOTANM.VGA".reference pack for 150 interior fighter shots from WC1, WC2, WC3, Academy, Armada and Privateer.
These are the roof graphics. The final ejection graphics are stored in the respective cockpit files, PCSHIP.V00 to PCSHIP.V03. (PCSHIP.V04, the Dralthi, would presumably have one if you could eject from it. While the inability to eject from the Dralthi was given a storyline justification, was there first a technical limitation that prevented this?)
Something I'd never realised until I video-captured an ejection sequence is that these roof pictures get stitched on top of the regular front cockpit view. Even after all the hours I've spent in those cockpits, they look very different with the roof graphic stitched on.
It took a bit longer than I'd planned, but 1.2 beta2 is finally here! Here's my list of fixes:
The joystick cursor issue took a lot more work than I was expecting. The bug may actually have been a result of some of the changes I made; it's possible that this feature worked correctly in the originally released Kilrathi Saga. Originally, the joystick handling code for the gameflow sequences would reposition the mouse cursor by calling the Windows SetCursorPos API. I think the resulting mouse "movement" would then trigger the code that updated the cursor image. As part of my changes aimed at making the game play nice with Windows systems, I removed all calls to SetCursorPos, so the second part of that sequence couldn't happen. Instead, I've reworked the joystick code to explicitly tell the rest of the game that the cursor position has been updated, and the gameflow sequences respond by updating the cursor image in the appropriate fashion.
- Planets are now visible in the stellar background and in the Wing1 victory sequence.
- SM1 and SM2 now correctly search the local path for streams before looking for a CD (Wing1 already did this).
- Fixed window title.
- Joystick menu navigation now works correctly, showing the correct cursor and help text.
- My initial fix for planets made them visible, but locked their orientation to your display. After watching a few YouTube videos, I found that my memory had been faulty; the original planets in the DOS versions actually did keep their orientation relative to the universe. Further, since the planet in the Wing1 victory sequence is drawn using the same code, planets also are drawn scaled at all times (just usually with a scale very close to 1.0). My original fix prevented the planet in the victory sequence from growing larger as the Tiger's Claw approached. This has now been properly fixed.
I've just released wcdx-1.2-beta3. In addition to fxing the planets loading bug, I've corrected what was possibly the most crucial oversight of the entire KS release:
That's right, I've added the poster back into the game! Originally added for Secret Missions 2, this highly important feature was left out of the Kilrathi Saga editions entirely. I have recreated the functionality from scratch, so the poster is now available for your viewing pleasure. Not only that, but I've added the functionality to all three games: Wing Commander 1, Secret Missions, and Secret Missions 2!
It's been a long time coming, but it's finally here! Let's Play Wing Commander! It's our first run outside the starbase. Will we make it back safely?
"It was not [LeBrock's] trailer. If it was her trailer, she'd of had a sense of humor, but it was this gal named Babette Props who was just this sweet, nice Christian girl and we happened to go take a dump in her trailer."
"We're not doing it in the toilet! I think we did it on her set chair. Whatever it was, it was wrong. We were crazy and were going to let everyone know how risque and off the wall we are. So [Props] comes back into the trailer and walks out literally holding her nose and then Joel Silver, who I knew only as someone I was afraid of and was a big Hollywood producer, said 'Everybody line up!'"
"[Silver] lined up the whole cast. He goes to Rusler, 'Did you do it?!,' and Rusler goes 'Nope,' even though I'd done the poo poo, but he had taken the pee right on top of it. So I started thinking, 'What would I say if I hadn't done it?,' so [Silver] goes, 'Downey, I'm going to ask you one time...' I go, 'No... I wish I did.'"
Well, that's it! The Wing Commander 4 mod is now fully operational on Homeworld Remastered. It features are:
- everything from the CIC-hosted version of the mod (including torpedo defense)
- the engine improvements from Remastered
- fuel management for all strike crafts outside the Excalibur and the Dragon, forcing you to come back to your carrier regularly
- functional tech tree for all three factions
- working AI for all three factions
- "hero" fighters, for each faction, unique crafts with boosted stats and, for Blair in the Border Worlds, the possibility to choose his ride. One special pilot for each faction, possibly more to come
- hidden units you have to unlock for your faction the Dekker way (two already, I'll try to get more in future updates)
- multiplayer functionality (requires an additional step explained on the mod page)
And as a call to the community, if anyone with 3D design experience has models of Kilrathi ships/fighters and would be willing to share them for this mod, I would be grateful for any material helping me to build a Kilrathi faction for the mod.
Klavs has released some wonderfully detailed Wing Commander models. Some of them needed a bit of work in modo, and a few need substantial U/V work and/or textures, but it's an amazing collection of ships.
Modo being modo, it choked on having more than 6 ships in the scene at a time, so the major Kilrathi ships were done in one scene, the 5 nearest Terran fighters in another, and then the smaller ships were done individually and duplicated in photoshop. I really like the ability now to render out different aspects of a scene - diffuse colour, spec, luminosity, etc., but modo did this wonderful thing in giving me a completely different gamma for the individual aspects than it did for the normal final color render. Didn't find this out until I spent several hours rendering stuff out and then bringing it in to photoshop. Found out there's about 6 different places one can change the colourspace and eff things up. Except, all I did was duplicate the existing final colour render output and change its effect to spec, diffuse, etc.
Really anticipating the next Lightwave crossgrade offer.... Anyhow, thanks for the trip down memory lane. Lost more days than I care to admit on the Wing Commander series.
Does anyone get what the bright corner is all about? I think it might not be that clear yet.
We know that we have turned to silent mode for a while but believe us when we say that it is for a good reason. Right now we are in the process of tuning our game engine and if we mange to make it through right on schedule it won't be long until you'll get your new update. :) Hopefully this "following update" that I am referring to will include better graphics quality and more balanced overall performance.
Since we are the two of us who are working on this project, we are trying hard to automate some of our development procedures (e.g. in game update system) in order to gain time and schedule more frequent updates. Our ultimate goal is to deliver this free game to the community finished, but not just that. We want the game to be delivered to the standards that we have set. Therefore, we will try to give frequent updates but if we have to hold our scheduled build for the good of the project, then the update will be postponed.
We love your passion and interest for "FlatUniverse" and of-course we are always available to answer to your calls. Always, feel free to tell us what's on your mind through this forum or any of the known contact methods that we provide. Stay tuned for new updates! ;)
Q: Will you make Kilrathi ships flyable as well, somewhere down the road?
A: Well not exactly down the road... The first of those is supposed to be flyable not in the next update but on the one after ;)
Q: How do you create missions? Some kind of text file (or XML or something), like in the FS2 engine, or do you actually have a graphical editor?
A: At the moment we design our missions directly in the game engine. However we have planned for and have the mechanics ready for a graphical mission editor that will hopefully also support chained missions (that's a synonym for campaigns)!
We've planned for one or two initial campaigns with one that might involve a Kilrathi side to the story. Now we would not mind if you prefer to make your own campaigns. That would be more fun...
Privateer: Pleasure Base
Wing Commander 3: Success
This one was interesting.
The PLANETS.VGA file (like the other VGA files) is a resource archive containing several image sets. The first image set (which I've dubbed the Space Junk image set) contains all of the normal floating debris images as well as the images for the individual stars that you see in the space backdrop (38 images in all). All of the other image sets contain only a single image; each of those is a planet or nebula or other large object (hereafter referred to only as planets). Of particular importance is that each planet image is alone in its image set.
The CAMP.00X files are resource archives. The first resource contains nothing but planet information, with four entries for each system. Information for a planet is stored in four two-byte values, in this order: Planet index, yaw, pitch, and roll. The index indicates which planet image should be used, with the special value -1 indicating that the slot is empty. The yaw, pitch, and roll values (given in degrees) determine where the planet should appear in the stellar backdrop. (The roll value is ultimately useless, but it's there anyway.)
The game keeps track of several space objects (up to 64, apparently). Each individual star is one such object, and so are the planets. Each object has a number of properties, including (among other things) orientation, position, a pointer to the image set, image index, and type. Stars are type 2; planets are type 3. For objects of type 2 (stars), the game doesn't keep track of the image set on a per-object basis. This is because the image sets are loaded on a per-object basis; if the game kept track of the image sets for individual stars, it would end up loading several copies of the image set in memory, one for each star. The game therefore has special handling for these objects, making the assumption that the image index refers to an image in the Space Junk image set. (This apparently also happens for type 4 objects, but I haven't bothered to figure out what those are yet.)
For whatever reason, possibly just because it was the expedient thing to do, the navigation crosshair (nav point indicator) is classed as a type 3 object, just like planets.
At draw time, the code cycles through all of the visible objects and draws them. For objects of type 2, 3, and 4, the game ignores orientation data and simply draws the image with no scaling or rotation. (You can see this by looking at the stars and planets as you roll your ship: the positions will change, but the orientations will remain the same.) The game checks to see if the object is the navigation crosshair; if it is, the game draws the image indicated by the object's image set and image index. If it isn't, the game uses the Space Junk image set instead, and therein lies the bug: All type 3 objects that are not the navigation crosshair are drawn using the Space Junk image set. Recall that each planet image is the only image in its respective image set; each planet, therefore, has an image index of 0, indicating that the game should use the first image in the image set. The game therefore loads the first image from the Space Junk image set and draws it where the planet should be.
The fix was very simple, once I understood what was going on. Instead of checking if the current object is the navigation crosshair, I just check to see if the object type is 3. If it is, I use the object's specified image set; if not, I use the Space Junk image set.
I would be very interested to know how this bug was introduced; it doesn't seem like the sort of thing that the KS developers should have been touching.
I am a long time fan of Wing Commander, playing since the original WC1 DOS release. Although this is my introduction to the community, I have been visiting this site for a while.
Last year, after witnessing all the work done on various WC projects, I was inspired to try and contribute by building on some of the work already done. I have been working on a WCGames Library (in .NET v4) for editing WC game data. I believe I now have enough functionality to share the results with the community.
Using the WCGames Library, you can edit existing data or create new data files. At this moment, there is support for CAMP, BRIEFING, and MODULE data files whether compressed or uncompressed; although compressed files will be written uncompressed.
Along with the WCGames Library, there is a simple console application which converts supported WC game data to and from XML. This provides a quick and easy way of editing game data.
This has only been possible because of the great work done by others. I hope this is just the beginning and to expand the library.
LeHah: Yeah! I really liked the scramble animation! They shot some guys on a treadmill, and gave me the images to rotoscope from. I kept it simple and silhouette-like in order to keep the memory requirements low. I created the background as a series of tileable panels that could be randomly assembled into a background corridor. All the programmers had to do was slowly pan the randomly created corridor, and superimpose random running-character spot-animations. Add flashing lights and a klaxon, and you're good to go! :) I was big on using multiplane effects to create depth.
Jdawg: Things get kind of complicated at this point. I did the ship launch sequence for WC1, and the return battle damage. And although I did the tech that's behind the ship for the canopy closing, I didn't do the tech that stands in front of the ship welcoming the pilot back. That was Glen Johnson. I did the Battlestar Galactica launch tube effect with a series of multiplane background images, and I did the carrier-launch deckhand silhouette after watching a lot of old WWII footage of carrier launches.
Bandit LOAF: Speaking of atmosphere, I still like the hanger backgrounds I did for WC1. Those big hazy actinic light banks in the distant corners of the cavernous hanger just worked great for any spot animation you wanted to throw in front of them. (Yes, I'm unduly proud of those.)
Mekt-Hakkikt: I was walking a fine line with the colors! The more different colors you have, the faster you eat up your 256 color limit with the different necessary shades of each color. That's why the backgrounds sometimes looked a little -- or a lot -- posterized. It's because the forground objects left only a few colors for the background. The cockpits were a lot of fun. I'd kind of zone-out when doing them, just layering dithered gradients and throwing in highlights and shadows. I tried to create a unique feel for each cockpit, some were very geometric, and others all curves. Some were rugged and thick, and others were thin and spindly. I think we even managed to have a side-mounted joystick in one of them. But they all had to display the same amount of information, so I moved all the items around to make each layout slightly different.
Did you know I invented the radar display? :D The design for the radar screen came from an idea I had to simulate peripheral vision in 3D games. It would still work today, but might be completely annoying. Basically, I imagined the center of the screen to be your normal first person view, but as you approached the edges of the screen the view becomes more and more compressed and distorted until the rectangle of pixels right at the edge of the screen represent the single pixel directly behind your head. Or more realistically, the rim of pixels at the extreme edges of your peripheral vision. Due to the distortion, you might not be able to tell what it is that's in your virtual peripheral vision, but you would be able to detect motion and color, which is all the input you need to know you need to turn that direction. I took this idea and applied it to the radar. The edge of the radar is the point directly behind your ship, and although you don't know what the red dots are exactly, you instantly know which direction to turn to quickly bring them into view.
WC1 may be moddable to a certain extent, but there are limits. The cutscenes between the series are hard-coded into the .exe file, just to name an example (in non-technical terms: that sucks).
From a story-telling perspective, there's also quite some limitations: there's Shotglass, there's two characters in the bar and there's the briefing and the debriefing. Compared to that, WC2 offers much more:
- cutscenes are not inside the .exe file
- a dedicated story-line view, making it possible to have multiple scenes
- cutscenes in-between missions (hell, I nearly freaked out 20 years ago when I first saw that in-flight conversation between Bluehair and the Concordia and then landing there)
- probably some other things that have evolved from being hard-coded inside the .exe
Announcement: As Homeworld Remastered has been released a few days ago on Steam, porting HW1, HW2 and, most importantly, a revamped version of both games in 4K resolution, remastered gameplay and other improvements... I have begun porting the Wing Commander mod to the Remastered engine.
You'll notice that I have still quite a lot to do to get it working completely, but I'm doing my best to get everything operational as soon as possible for the mod to work under the new user interface and the changes in engine. More to come very soon. :)
Of course, the praise must once again go to Aaron "czacen" Thomas, who did, well, 99.9999% of this mod and managed to create an excellent total conversion for a game that just came back to the spotlight it always deserved through the Remastered version of Homeworld 2. The models, the textures, the coding, the soundbites and music integration, the file architecture as a whole, everything is his colossal work, to which I came only much later to do some gameplay tinkering. Also to note that the icons are not working with the Steam version of the game, while they are obviously here for the original one (the one published by Relic a dozen years ago). I've identified where are the icons, and am currently trying to get them to be loaded, but to no avail. I'll update the mod if I get that bug fixed, though.
As I am trying to get the mod development out of its hiatus I figured it would be a good idea to post a development thread. Until now the info about my mod is spread over several threads, I am trying to change that. I am also going to try and write small updates at least every two weeks, to try and motivate myself to finish this thing.
About the story: The most important plot points will be in the briefings and a few in the missions. Reading the story is not required to enjoy the missions. I love story, and I am writing a full (and not too short) story that I hope people will enjoy. So I decided to not include the story in the mod itself, but to include it as a PDF file to read on your phone, tablet, PC or whatever you like. There will be breaks in it that tell you when the missions are supposed to be flown, in order to not spoil them for you. In good old WC fashion the story is about a rookie pilot on his first assignment.
So where are the blockers? Well, the story is in my head, but not on paper yet. Most parts of it are finished (9 of 12 chapters, approximately), and thanks to capi the words sound much better now. Keep in mind that I am not a native English speaker, and I am writing that thing in English (what the hell was I thinking?) This is probably what will take the most time.
The missions are not quite finished. They are all there, but they lack some dialogues, debriefings, possibly voiceovers, and a bit of balancing/bugfixing. Also the player isn't given any awards or promotions yet.
I still need some graphics. Not many, but a few. A Kilrathi player portrait is the minimum. If I can't find someone to render or draw it, I will take a Kilrathi helmet from WC3 and use that. But I would like to have that, and a few more portraits for main characters in the story PDF. So if an artist reads this and wants to draw some space cats: PM me! :)
That's all for now. My first task: I will try and write another chapter for for the story in the next few days.
For the glory of Kilrah, the Emperor and the Empire!
Currently I am trying to figure out what goes where and how the Kilrathi equivalent of a workstation could look like and other Kilrathi stuff. As a reference I am using an image of the Kilrathi DN hangar bay, some WC3 cutscene images and an image I found from Privateer 3 (?) concept art.
It's an very early design and I can already see one or two problems with this.
A) I have just rendered the stuff for Saga back then but don't know how to implement it
B) I can't model people, let alone an Kilrathi. So we would need someone who can help out in that regard.
I have an idea for the campaign's main plot, but I'm still trying to figure out the best way to write it. I also have yet to figure out just what events will constitute the main plot line, and which will act as side plots and adventures. My current plan of action there is to take some time to flesh out a campaign tree (with which anybody who has ever played any Wing Commander game should be intimately familiar) and I spent a fair amount of time over the weekend writing down adventure hooks (I'm using some diagramming software to do this, basically a high-tech version of the "post-it note" storytelling method).
So the plan for this week is to organize my adventure hooks into a proper campaign tree. This will let me know roughly where any single given adventure will fall in the whole series of events, which in turn will let me know into which of the four "Acts" a given adventure will fall, which in turn will let me begin making wiki pages for each adventure and start hammering them out. It'll also show me if I need to add some additional adventures. I'm actually pretty excited and looking forward to this whole process - for a while now I've struggled with what will be in the campaign's middle, and it'll be nice to finally have something there. I do have an even dozen plotline missions planned at this point; it would be nice to get that up to a multiple of eight (for no reason other than to keep with the whole relationship between the Kilrathi and the number eight, really).
And now 1.2 beta 1 is up, with Secret Missions 2 support! Next on my plate is the planets bug; I want to try and tackle that before heading on to WC2. Happy flying!