Take a Closer Look at WC2's Cut Carrier Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here's some random Rigakh knowledge to help kickstart your weekend. These are the hand written design notes working out the ships for Wing Commander II... including the cut-for-space Rigakh carrier! It was the Kilrathi flagship, which appears only in cutscenes.

Here's the Rigakh 3D model. It was originally to be part of the final mission alongside K'Tithrak Mang (which is why you are given so many torpedoes!) After being cut from WC2, it was written in as the final boss in the first mission disk... and was then cut again! A lot of folks assume the Kilrathi flagship is a Ralatha destroyer; they look very similar, but the Rigakh has six nacelles instead of five (and a flight deck in the front.) The similarity may be why it was such an easy cut. You can see 'out' from inside the front of the flight deck in cutscenes where Thrakhath and Khasra are talking.
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See Inside the Southampton Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here's another fantastic piece of Wing Commander art by HandofManos. This one is a "master systems display" style cutout for the Southampton class destroyer. I always used to love these for Star Trek designs, so it's wonderful to see one imagined for a Wing Commander ship. He actually made this quite a while back, so it's unlikely that there's another forthcoming any time soon, but we would love to see more! Thanks to Klavs for the tip.
An older MSD which someone asked my to upload. It is a design seen in Wing Commander 3 and 4 and is the mainstay Terran Confederation destroyer.

Cargo Haul: Australian Kilrathi Saga Edition Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

After many years of admiring from afar, I finally added a copy of the Australian Wing Commander Kilrathi Saga to my collection. It's essentially the same game as the North American edition, but there are some nice cosmetic differences. I knew it had a spiral bound 'yearbook' manual, but I didn't expect the paper to be different. It has a softer and almost newsprint feel compared to more common glossy pages. Speaking of being soft, instead of five hard separate jewel cases, the disc holder is also a faux leather plastic inside of a glossy sleeve. The game also has a sticker from the Office of Film and Literature classification that gives it a "General 8 Years & Over" rating due to a low level of violence. For comparison, the ESRB gives Kilrathi Saga a Mature 17+ designation based on "mild language and realistic violence" (primarily from the WC3 cutscenes). I guess they have a pretty high tolerance down under!

Gathering Feedback on Prophecy's DVD Upgrade Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Wing Commander fans have made a wide range of truly amazing patches over the years, and one of the most technically impressive is the suite of upgrades that enables modern high quality graphics, multiplayer and enhanced DVD movies in Wing Commander Prophecy. This is mostly accomplished by applying HCl's Enhancement Package as well as the OpenGL Patch by Pedro, PopsiclePete and team. However, time marches on, computer hardware gets better and operating systems change. This has increased the chance that some particular setup configurations aren't compatible with all of the aforementioned tweaks. Pedro is trying to gauge how many fellow Wingnuts are affected by this in order to help prioritize future work between upgrading these patches or working on his various fan projects. Answering the poll question below will provide valuable feedback - and feel free to follow up with more detail at the CIC Forums! If you haven't experienced these upgrades, now's a great time to take them out for a spin and let Pedro know what happens. Here's the quick instructions:
  • Install Prophecy (the GOG edition is fine)
  • Download the WCP Enhancement Package, and unzip the files straight into the WCP folder. Make sure you DON'T overwrite Prophecy.exe or WCPHR.DLL
  • Install the OpenGL Package
  • Right-click on Prophecy.exe, select "Properties", "Compatibility" tab, and remove the "Win98" compatibility flag. Make sure you also click on the "All users settings" button at the bottom and remove it there too.
  • Download the DVD movies, and unzip them into a folder called "Movie" in the WCP folder.
There are some DVD issues with the last few patches, and HCl has taken something of a break from everything online. I started to investigate alternative methods - ideally something inbuilt rather than a seperate window. It looked promising, the main concern was the audio. The DVD playback I added for the WCIV Remake would be applicable, but without expanding on the DivX patch HCl made it would have to use the low quality audio... maybe the increased compatibility would still make that a win however.

Hellcat Back on the Drawing Board Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

NightBall06 is back with an update on his Hellcat V design. The concept was originally somewhat inspired by Klavs' Wildcat, but NightBall has further refined the newer ship with his own artistic license and the WC games as a reference. Of particular note is that these are essentially Photoshopped images. Most ships that you see here are 3D modeled renders from a rotatable modeling program, but these are instead each individually crafted pictures based on his design. As a new father, he's unlikely to learn how to build 3D fighters anytime soon, so he's totally open to anyone with that particular skill taking on his design or incorporating into a fan project.
I’ve got a little update on my Hellcat for you and your website. Over the holidays I had a few hours off-time so I used it. Since I’m still no good at 3D it was Photoshop again, but this time I tried to draw it from all angles accordingly.

It’s not fully finished but far enough so you might show it on your Site. The sideview is sort of undecided yet - the upper version is close to my original image, the lower version is a bit closer to the original WC3 sketches at the engines.

It would be really cool if someone like DefianceIndustries or Klavs81 would help me visualize my design in 3D. Because I don’t know if I’ll find time to teach myself 3D - ever since my little daughter started running around :)

Fan Project Voting Continues Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

The CIC's annual community vote is now in full swing! If you didn't get a chance to vote last week, the poll is still open and you can input your selection below. The nominees are listed after that, and it's still super inspiring to me to see them all listed out! Half of these projects didn't exist or weren't in the running in 2018, so it's especially cool how much new blood there is this time around.
  • Adm_Maverick Tabletop Adventures began as papercraft models. After Maverick got some practice making miniature WC ships, he branched out into a full fledged game. He's since produced a wide range of supporting items and has been actively playtesting to work out the kinks.
  • AircPirateNinsei's radio controlled flying Hornet model has to be seen to be believed! He's combined his aerodynamic skills with Wing Commander fandom to produce an incredible tribute to the WC series that actually goes airborne!
  • DefianceIndustries has his own personal Wing Commander projects, but he also contributes a great many technical assets to other endeavors. At the core of it are the beautiful designs that he creates at seemingly industrial scale!
  • The Freelancer Mod that replaces most all of the native ships to the game with Wing Commander alternatives was just begun in the later part of the year, but it's already certified as campaign-compatible and working on revamping the entire game economy. This will significantly enhance the level balancing to keep all the factions competitive into the endgame, which is something the original didn't implement great.
  • The Gemini Sector RPG has roots that extend back more than a decade. They've evolved multiple times through MUD/MUSHes to forums and now play on a modern Discord server. They've hosted beginner's sessions to help add new players, and they have a great time doing it!
  • The venerable Homeworld Remastered Mod, also known as Flag Commander, released another major update this year with beautiful starscape skyboxes. They also released an updated play guide and even a WC3 prologue campaign.
  • The Prophecy & Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack had another big year. On top of a fantastic beta release at the CIC Birthday, they're already hard at work on the next release which will incorporate more beautiful ships and huge capship explosions.
  • UnnamedCharacter's WC Toolbox has helped uncover the mysteries of the original games and spur a renaissance of early-WC modding, but it's just the beginning. A variety of useful tools and digital insights are helping curious Wingnuts dig deeper than ever into the code to find new discoveries and push the boundaries of fan projects.
  • The WC4 Fan Remake started out the year with an impressive new cockpit and then teased some of its first enhanced gameplay footage. The team is now testing higher resolutions and other technical challenges.
  • Wing Leader was one of the most eye-catching projects of the summer. Howard Day added a number of classic WC designs to his own custom Unity WC engine to great effect and gave people an impressive glimpse at what a modern take on the original Wing Commander could be.

Absolute Territory Looking for Pilots & Mission Builders Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

centaurianmudpig has announced that his WC-style space sim Absolute Territory is now taking beta signups. More than just flying around in space, the testing here also involves creating your own missions via a neat custom interface. If you'd like to get in early and help positively influence a fellow Wing Commander fan's work, head over to the CIC Forums here.
Interested in joining the Closed Beta? Fill in this form and you will receive more information closer to the event taking place. The main purpose of the Beta will be to test the in-game level editor for creating your own custom missions.

Mark Hamill Reminisces About Acting in Video Games Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Xbox has conducted an interview with Mark Hamill to promote Fortnite, but they spend the first several minutes talking about his history with video games. He fondly reflects on playing early consoles with his kids, and he also has great things to say about his experience with branching non-linear games. Mr. Hamill has tons of voice actoring experience, but he has a special place in his heart for the games that provide different options for the player and how that causes the story to unfold. We also get to see him play Fortnite - with support by his sons Nathan & Griffin Hamill!

Ninja teaches Mark Hamill the ways of Fortnite and Mark Hamill takes Ninja through the art of voice acting for video games.

George Oldziey on Piano This Weekend! Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

There's good news for fan's of Origin composer George Oldziey's music. He'll be back in Austin shortly to perform on the piano this Saturday at Chez Zee. It looks like a fun place! Although this isn't a Wing Commander event, George has a fun distinctive style that is sure to lighten the mood. He'll also probably autograph your WC album!
Greetings my Austin friends! I'm in town for a few days and am making a rare appearance (sure makes it sound like I'm a big shot :) playing solo piano at Chez Zee on Balcones Dr this Saturday evening, January 11th. I start twinkling the ivories at 6:30 PM and play until 10 PM. If you're in the "hood" stop by, grab a drink or dinner and say hi!
Unfortunately, we missed his anniversary greeting for Wing Commander 3's 25th anniversary last month, so here it is - better late than never!
Wow, time sure flies when you are having fun! And I think that was one of the most fun and fulfilling things I've ever done! Great team, great project, and the chance of a lifetime doing something I love that has touched so many. Here's to you, WC fans from all around the world!!

Carrier Cruising on Through Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

OliverInk has built a cool scene with the Midway cruising by a beautiful planet. They're a good match with some heavy blue notes throughout. The source of the megacarrier render itself is none other than Sean Murphy's archive, so the result is a top notch wallpaper image!
From Here To Midway

Moongate Kilrathi Colored In Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

The Origin art piece destined for Through the Moongate, from Wing Commander and Ultima VII to Portalarium continues to come together. Manda, the painter, has posted these step-by-step illustrations to show how the Kilrathi face and Dralthi fighter have been added. As this is a KF-100 fighter, it's greenish tinged as it soars by. Project backers who supported the book, but not the higher art tiers, have an option to add a cloth version of this painting for €30 by contacting author Andrea Contato.
Science fiction and fantasy painters benefit from painting wildlife. The Kilrathi are a cat-inspired race of aliens. I’ll be better able to paint fantasy felines if I’ve made a few real ones along the way. GrrAWWRRR!!! The asymmetry is very deliberate. This one is a bad guy. I want them in the mean and angry and crazed side of things.

New Cerberus Model Ready to Launch Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

The Prophecy & Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack is kicking 2020 off with a bang. There's a brand new Cerberus model churning the waters that's even more accurate to the original model while being more efficient at the same time. It's already humming along in the game's engine ready to headline the project's next release. The new update should be forthcoming soon after DefianceIndustries makes some upgrades to the Midway and other capships. You can try the latest version here.
Happy New Year Wingnuts! We we keep plugging away here at the MUP. Grim is finalizing a few additional engine tweaks for correcting issues with corvette impacts and a new mesh for the capship explosion shockwave. The old one was a bit angular so we're seeing if we can use a smoother mesh with some more triangles to make it look more better. We're also looking at possibly doing dynamically sized shield impacts on capships based on the power of the weapon (ie. a tachyon gun would have a larger impact image than a laser for example). Finally - and this is good news: Grim was able to confirm that the .DLL conflict in WCP which was preventing us from implementing dead capships is resolved. The conflicting DLL was from HCl's visual upgrade pack and the open/GL patch handles the same functionality. So we can start implementing dead ships in WCP as well.

On the art front: Cerberus V2 is meshed and textured. It's closer to the original game mesh, the V1 had a stubbier nose, and the V2 model is about 3k fewer triangles. The good news is I was able to reuse the components from the V1 model. Below you can see the finished meshes and the dead hull object.

V2 of the Cerberus is converted and in the engine! Hooray! It looks pretty nice too.

Annual Community Vote Begins! Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

The new year's train keeps rolling, and now it's time for our annual fan project contest. Based on Wingnut nominations and our review of the news from the past twelve months, we've narrowed down the long list of amazing fan projects from 2019 into ten nominees. We know it's super hard to pick just one, but try your best! Good luck to all!
  • Adm_Maverick Tabletop Adventures began as papercraft models. After Maverick got some practice making miniature WC ships, he branched out into a full fledged game. He's since produced a wide range of supporting items and has been actively playtesting to work out the kinks.
  • AircPirateNinsei's radio controlled flying Hornet model has to be seen to be believed! He's combined his aerodynamic skills with Wing Commander fandom to produce an incredible tribute to the WC series that actually goes airborne!
  • DefianceIndustries has his own personal Wing Commander projects, but he also contributes a great many technical assets to other endeavors. At the core of it are the beautiful designs that he creates at seemingly industrial scale!
  • The Freelancer Mod that replaces most all of the native ships to the game with Wing Commander alternatives was just begun in the later part of the year, but it's already certified as campaign-compatible and working on revamping the entire game economy. This will significantly enhance the level balancing to keep all the factions competitive into the endgame, which is something the original didn't implement great.
  • The Gemini Sector RPG has roots that extend back more than a decade. They've evolved multiple times through MUD/MUSHes to forums and now play on a modern Discord server. They've hosted beginner's sessions to help add new players, and they have a great time doing it!
  • The venerable Homeworld Remastered Mod, also known as Flag Commander, released another major update this year with beautiful starscape skyboxes. They also released an updated play guide and even a WC3 prologue campaign.
  • The Prophecy & Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack had another big year. On top of a fantastic beta release at the CIC Birthday, they're already hard at work on the next release which will incorporate more beautiful ships and huge capship explosions.
  • UnnamedCharacter's WC Toolbox has helped uncover the mysteries of the original games and spur a renaissance of early-WC modding, but it's just the beginning. A variety of useful tools and digital insights are helping curious Wingnuts dig deeper than ever into the code to find new discoveries and push the boundaries of fan projects.
  • The WC4 Fan Remake started out the year with an impressive new cockpit and then teased some of its first enhanced gameplay footage. The team is now testing higher resolutions and other technical challenges.
  • Wing Leader was one of the most eye-catching projects of the summer. Howard Day added a number of classic WC designs to his own custom Unity WC engine to great effect and gave people an impressive glimpse at what a modern take on the original Wing Commander could be.

Midway Meets Its Star Wars Twin Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here's an interesting comparison between a new Star Wars ships and the familiar TCS Midway. Anxiety recently spotted the Onager class star destroyer, which was recently added to the nifty Star Wars miniature tabletop game. Hammerhead shaped designs are quite common in sci-fi, but the Midway's iconic "pair of pants" silhouette is slightly more unique. A pants ship that has a giant gun in the middle is even more rare. They're obviously not perfect twins, but from certain angles, such as the two pictured below, these two ships do bear a striking similarity. We've talked with Midway creator Sean Murphy about how he goes about designing space ships, and it's a fascinating process, especially when it organically leads to similar results like this!

Happy New Poll! Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

It's a new year and time for a new poll! Our annual new year's poll asks what kind of year you think it'll be for Wing Commander. As we saw in yesterday's recap, 2019 was a big year for Wing Commander, and there's no sign of letting up in 2020!


The old poll asked about the most underappreciated Wing Commander games. Armada, with its strategic mode and expansive multiplayer options, took the lead with Privateer 2 a close second. Super Wing Commander, Academy and even the Prophecy port for the Game Boy Advance also took in a good number of votes. It's great to see people who are fans of all these lesser-known WC products!

Happy New Year! Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Welcome to the Twenties! That feels so very weird to type. As we step into a whole new decade, we'll take one more look back today at all of the wonderful things that happened in the world of Wing Commander in 2019. It was another big year! First up, here's the recap of the news:

Right off the bat, it was a time of discovery as we learned new things. We finally figured out what the mystery fighter in Academy was intended to be and added a couple of the show's scripts to the archive. A tantalizing bit of phonetic script was discovered in the Secret Missions and a fun easter egg in SNES SM1. And shockingly, a new Wing Commander game was released in Japan! Wing Commander Arena finally debuted on the Xbox 360 in January after almost 12 years in limbo. In February, LOAF and Dundradal kicked off the first season of All Wings Considered, the CIC's weekly streaming variety show. The team produced over a hundred hours of content across 34 episodes and will be back soon for the second season! They also penned a new WC vs History on the subject of Broadswords, which was a welcome return of the feature. In physical product news, Origin artist Denis Loubet 3D printed the Pewter Planet and we added some exotic Japanese SWC 3DO stickers to the collection. On the musical front, George Oldziey's WC Jazz Album shipped and WC music was once again performed by a Swedish orchestra. Wing Commander footage was also included in a new music video by GUNSHIP and even appeared in an advertisement for Progressive insurance. The Wing Commander Movie also started to make its way back into digital distribution on Redbox, Google Play, Fandango Now and VUDU after the rights transfer from FOX to Chris Roberts. We heard from a lot of major industry professionals who reminisced about Wing Commander. The founder of Raylight Games, Massi Di Monda, wrote an article about how integral Prophecy was to the growth of their company. MMO luminary Starr Long mentioned that they haven't forgotten about the series and keep pinging EA now and then about access to the Wing Commander license. Ginger Lynn Allen dug up her Prophecy uniform and posted it for auction, and the founders of Moby Games talked about WC was the third game added to the site. The second Moongate Origin history book also successfully crowdfunded with a variety of WC perks. It was a big year for anniversaries. The WC Movie turned 20, Armada turned 25 as did WC3. The CIC's own 21st Birthday was fully livestreamed for the first time with much of the CIC Staff in the same place. The Sony Playstation also turned 25. This was a good time for tying up loose ends. LOAF finally found the source for all the German Wing Commander novel cover arts, and we found out about a new canceled WC3 port for the Jaguar. Similarly, we got word on what's up with the Wing Commander CCG boxed set that was never released. Multiple CCG artists also posted samples of their original card artwork. The CIC Head Museum got a huge facelift too! Sadly, we lost a few people who were influential to Wing Commander, including Owen Garriott and Sid Mead just this week. Fan Projects were huge once again. This is just an extremely cursory review, since you could easily write a whole article on a dozen different projects in active operation right now. We'll cover them in slightly more depth soon when we kick off our annual contest. AircPirateNinsei's actual flying Hornet was an incredible example of physical WC arts, and RetroRat's awesome diorama was super cool too. These were followed by Maverick's nifty papercraft cruiser. Mav also put together a playable tabletop game, and the folks over at Gemini Sector had a lot of fun playing their RPG too. Digital artists were working overtime with Defiance Industries pumping out no less than a dozen stellar models. Klavs was back with a Waterloo and Hornet, plus Dark Sentinel branched out into Kilrathi. So many of these awesome Wingnut creators help each other and work interdependently. Arne's Android Arts created a wide range of creative sketches that eventually inspired Howard Day's tremendous Wing Leader up-rez take on the WC1 engine. We're not sure how he found the time to work on that while pushing Rebel Galaxy Outlaw out the door at the same time! Many of Defiance's ships made it into a big Prophecy & Secret Ops Model Upgrade Pack release, which was itself bolstered by gr1mre4per's Prophecy Unlimited technical coding upgrades.

UnnamedCharacter made lots of technical discoveries in the WC1 engine, which supported improvements to Goliath's WC1 Sprite Refresh. Somehow L.I.F. manages to juggle multiple major project releases. He put out a big update to the Homeworld mod while creating and releasing an entire Freelancer mod on the side. The WC4 Fan Remake made great strides this year, and Centaurianmudpig got his shooter further off the ground. KrisV and the gang FINALLY fixed Prophecy multiplayer too. The series of original WC visual novels by SonataFanatica was also a favorite of mine.


Thank you all for another fantastic year. We can't wait to see what 2020 has in store!
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