My new book POSTMORTEMS is going to press soon: 700 pages of design articles on MUDs, UO, Privateer Online, SWG, Metaplace, and even Andean Bird. Tons of new material never published. Foreword by @RichardGarriott.
Today's snippet from my forthcoming book POSTMORTEMS is on the cancelled PRIVATEER ONLINE, which had some huge differences from other MMOs of the day. There's never been much info out there about this game, but the book has a detailed description (bet @wccic will be interested!)
Few game designers have shared as many lessons learned as Raph Koster. In a quarter-century of writings and talks, he has offered up game design lessons, online community theories, and candid self-evaluation.
This first volume of a three-book set of selected essays collects previously written postmortems and many brand new pieces. They are accompanied by historical material such as posts written for players, chat logs, speeches, design sketches, and more. The result is an inspiring historical look back at the development of virtual worlds.
Since Eagles don't die
Anyway, if you've tried to use the importer, you'll know that it is sluggish as hell. I've been trying to work on that. I made a few optimizations to the importer recently, which mostly involve using flat typed arrays instead of lists of lists, and it turned out to be MUCH faster than what I had. With my most recent optimizations, I was able to cut the import time in half! Well, at least for the more detailed meshes. AST_S_01.IFF hasn't shown much improvement in terms of import time, but that's because the other bottleneck is the MAT reader, and I have no idea how I could optimize the MAT reader any further.
- Allows you to do most of the work on the model in Blender and then export it without the need to use external utilities to set the collision sphere, radius, or hardpoints.
- If a texture's filename is numeric, you will be able to convert it straight to a MAT file without renaming it. For example, if you have a texture named 424242.jpg, your model will reference 00424242.mat
- Converts Blender "empty" objects to hardpoints and other VISION engine mesh metadata.
- Collision sphere position and radius is automatically calculated, but can be manually overridden.
- Child objects can now be exported along with the main object.
- LOD mesh support
We may never know
Second on the list was to recreate some of the trading consoles and re-purpose them as Wing Commander arcade machines. As soon as we had this idea it had to be done!!
Painted and in place at the event they certainly went down well with the crowd and the people we spoke to really enjoyed the trip down memory lane playing through all versions of Chris Roberts' 90s games.
"There’s a nuclear missile in my ship?!"
Today is Wing Commander creator Chris Roberts' birthday! He's looking pretty good for fifty - video game development seems to suit him well. Still, hopefully he's able to take a break and enjoy the weekend!
Just kidding. Today actually marks fifteen years of continuous daily WC news updates. The last day we missed was May 25, 2003, short of the occasional technical issue that may have slightly delayed the daily news a bit. Back in the spring of 2003, we were all eagerly awaiting the imminent release of Wing Commander Prophecy for the Gameboy Advance.
Not every day features major breaking stories or unearths startling revelations, but there's always something happening in the Wing Commander community. That's thanks to how engaged and dedicated you all are every day. Where will we be in another five, ten or fifteen years? Probably looking back and wondering what the heck the headline on this post meant.
That's what we've been saying all along!
In dieser Szene, die wahrscheinlich aus Platzgründen nicht in der PC-Version aber dafür in der Playstation- und 3DO-Version sowie in der Romanfassung von "Wing Commander III: Heart of the Tiger" enthalten ist, entdeck Colonel Christopher "Maverick" Blair (Mark Hamill/Frank Röth) eine Videobotschaft von Ralgha "Hobbes" nar Hhallas (John Schuck/Thomas Rauscher), in dem er die Umstände seines Verrats an der Terranischen Konföderation und an seinen besten Freund erklärt.
Vielen Dank an Wingcenter.net, wo diese und andere Szenen aus der Playstation-Version auf Englisch und auf Deutsch zur Verfügung gestellt worden sind.
Resist the temptation!
Just got this hard to find Spanish Wing Commander Armada. The box is in a good shape and the disks are still readable. It's added to the archive now. #DOSgaming
There's always room for more
Sorry boys, I'm just a tourist with a fragged nav console - can you tell me where I am?
Well..... you can't have a Talon without giving it something to shoot at.
True, but where there's a will, there's a retcon
Composers Play - "Wing Commander 3" with the composer George Oldziey!
Apologies about the audio at the beginning. Check out and support George's music.
It wasn't much better on a 486 unless you had 16 megs of RAM
Dennis Mull came across a hardware setup from the mid '90s that's a pretty neat time capsule of the era. The Quickshot "Squadron Commander" QS-202 is a very early example of a Hands-On Throttle And Stick (HOTAS). Lots of joysticks at the time were sold as "compatible with Wing Commander," and this one includes pre-programmed controls for Wing Commander, Wing Commander 3 and Strike Commander. Given the rapid pace of PC advancement during that time, it's pretty cool that you could regularly find equipment that worked with all of these games. The box even advertises Windows 95 compatibility. And there's lots of other titles besides the WC series listed on the box, which gives you an idea of how popular the flight sim genre was at the time. TheSynrgy also put together a cool unboxing of the unit if you'd like to see more!
It's kind of a single entendre
Check out this pre-release screenshot from Privateer 2 that AD discovered and compare it to one from the final game. The UI isn't as developed, ship icons are in color, BUY/SELL is named TRANS-ACT... and all of the ships have different names: JACKAL becomes Straith, FLEA becomes Shaman and MANTIS becomes Icarus. MULE and CORSAIR don't match ships in the finished game! Most interesting: your ship isn't pictured but is listed as a "TIGER SHARK." That's not in the final game, but it IS referenced in passing twice in the flavor text. Melissa Banks is said to fly a Tiger Shark named Fatale (she flies a Faldari when you rescue her).
This was part of the CD-ROM Interactive Entertainment previews recently discovered. It's worth comparing side by side here in greater detail, because the differences are so cool!
Lots of bugs
As for the wipe index, the following values are possible:
0: wipe down; horizontal line wipe (from top to bottom)
1: wipe left; vertical line wipe (from right to left)
2: wipe up; horizontal line wipe (from bottom to top)
3: wipe right; vertical line wipe (from left to right)
4: wipe diagonal (from top left to bottom right)
5: wipe diagonal (from top right to bottom left)
6: wipe diagonal (from bottom right to top left)
7: wipe diagonal (from bottom left to top right)
8: iris from center to edges
9: iris from edges to center
Speaking of WC2...
So I had a very strange experience that no information I could find on the internet could explain. I've searched the forums here and couldn't find anything directly relevant (so my apologies if this has been asked before and I missed it). I'm currently doing a 'losing campaign' play-through of WC1 (i.e. so I can play all the series you miss if you win all the time). I met the full victory conditions for Brimstone 1 & 2, but in order to lose the series I am not killing the Dorkir in Brimstone 3 (provided I can retreat from it before Maniac kills it).
Now in trying to accomplish this, my aim was to get 8 kills (i.e. 2 Jalthis & 6 Krants) then get back to base, while keeping Maniac alive. However, on one of my attempts Maniac died before I could kill all the Krants, so I went back to base with the 8 kills (leaving the Dorkir alive) just to see what would happen. Of course I get dressed down by the Colonel for failing the mission (he didn't care about Maniac dying lol), however for my failures I am rewarded with both a Bronze Star and a promotion!
This is the opposite of what LotsoRobbinBear was doing
Game developer Chris Roberts was on course to deliver the first major science fiction film of 1999 when he personally piloted his massively popular flight simulator Wing CommanderPhantom Menace and The Matrix. Do fighter pilots Freddie Prinze Jr. and Matthew Lillard offer a new hope for genre fans as they clean the cat box of feline space invaders The Kilrathi? Or should Arnie, Justin, and Stuart quickly eject from this next entry in the Now Playing Arcade? Listen and find out!
I finally finished up my F-38 Talon. These things litter the Gemini sector and everybody has at least ten. From the Retros, to pirates, to in-system security - you can't throw a rock and not hit one; even the Kilrathi have a few. But I currently only did two paint schemes. By far the most famous - and obnoxious:
DIE BY THE VERY WEAPONS YOU ADORE!!!!!
And to counteract the crazies - here's a Confed ISS version: Best not be carrying any contraband around these guys - oh, who am I kidding, they're made entirely of tissue paper. Anyway - enjoy!
Speaking of Talons...
The wait is over...
The first Wing Commander Multiplayer Tournament will become a reality only if... YOU JOIN US
Do you feel the heat?
23/24 June 2018
Let's find out!
Maybe because this isn't The One starring Jet Li
Friday night score! Happened across several pre-release Super Wing Commander screenshots. Note the older VDU graphics and the early cockpit that's more TIE Fighter than Hornet!
Greetings WC music fans! Firstly, I have to apologize for not being very present here. Some life's challenges took my attention, but they have been resolved and I now have the music for the WC bar music CD ready to be manufactured.
But first! I would love suggestions for art work for the CD. If you have any ideas about what you think would be appropriate for the CD jacket let me know! I'd like to get this done in the next few weeks if possible, so please send me your thoughts!
Thank you again for your patience and support!
Or somehow all three?
The final missing ebook from the Baen Wing Commander catalog continues to march towards release. As previously mentioned, the Milk Run story is available as a sample chapter to help get fans excited. Since we last reported, the novel has been added for preorder on Kobo, and we've added links to Google Play as well. End Run fully releases on July 3, 2018. Also check out the new and improved Book Grid that Kris and LOAF made. All the digital options you could want in your WC novel life are now at your fingertips! (except Freedom Flight on Google Play, apparently)
On topic today
You only get the Golden Sun the first time...
Hello, I made a few changes to the Wing Commander 1 graphics.
Ha, well, I have ramscoops...
A little LEGO model I designed in Lego Digital Designer, converted to 3DS, then imported into Lightwave for a quick test render.
This is a good one
Back in Svalbard with the youngest boy ever to the North Pole! Everyone happy & healthy, happy to have power & internet!
Seven, seventeen, same thing...
Update time true believers! Today we are showcasing another great Nephilim ship brought to you by Dark Sentinel. The Triton (aka Leatherback) transport. Essentially a giant cigar case with guns, DS has done a great job making it look more like the original concept art, good and buggy! He's also bringing spines back. That's right spines! This ship is loaded with them! If you don't like spines, go home! Also I got the fun part of blowing it up, and so can you! Look for this and other exciting Nephilim additions in the next patch - Coming soon!
To beat Kurasawa 2, you just have to believe...
But let's just say he could hypothetically cruise at a cool 500 kilometers per second...