Animated Claw Inserted Into WC1 Engine Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here's a spectacular experiment conducted by DefianceIndustries. Goliath and UnnammedCharacter made some great headway a couple years ago on adding enhanced models into the original WC1 engine, and Defiance has taken that in a different direction. He's taken his animated series-style Tiger's Claw and converted it into a collection of sprites to be displayed in game. The result is that players are now able to fly around a Bengal straight out of the Academy television show. What a trip! Let Defiance know if you'd like to test this out or if there would be interest in a conversion pack with more ships.
So I was playing around with the WCt Toolbox and decided to try and make a WC1 mod. So I took my WCA Bengal and converted it into a sprite sheet. It was a larger process than I originally thought but it is kinda fun to do this sort of messing around. Admittedly I stand on the shoulders of giants here. This would've been impossible without the work of UnnamedCharacter on the WC Toolbox and Goliath's sprite rendering script for Blender. So yeah, if anyone wants it I'm happy to share. I may end up doing a whole WCA pack at some point in the future.

A Closer Look at a Classic Academy Ad Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

OldTechAdverts recently reposted a spiffy advertisement sheet for Wing Commander Academy. LOAF took a moment to appreciate it and point out some interesting elements below. It can be hard for modern audiences to appreciate Academy today, but if you were there to see things like this in magazines back in 1993, you knew how cool this was! You can find more classic WC ads like this in the CIC Documents Archive here.
This ad is a master class in marketing copy. Everything fresh and appealing—“CyberSchool’s holodeck console,” “cybernet wingman”, etc.—is just describing the fictional setting and doesn’t touch the gameplay at all.
The bottom screenshot is one of my all-time favorite bullshots, too! None of these wingmen are in the game and that VDU face appears nowhere else! Final game doesn’t use “zealous”, either.
If you look closely at the Wraith cockpit you’ll see it isn’t finished... the left VDU is still a Morningstar!
Even the key art is a big cool lie. This painting is the very first appearance of the Privateer/Super Wing Commander-style Dralthi Mk. VII design... which doesn’t appear in the game at all!
It's kind of crazy I referred to this as a "classic" ad fifteen years ago too...

Armada Outshines 800+ Bootleg Games Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here's a funky bootleg shared by Patrick_Patman. The Super/Multi Game bundle is a CD packed with a whopping 808 games. Wing Commander Armada is the clear headliner here, and other notables include Litil Divil, Gateway2 Homeworld, Heimdall 2 and Zool2 (Sonic). The other 803 games are part of a shovelware Game Master collection. "Over 800 of the highest quality games on CD-ROM." I can't vouch for the rest, but at least one included title is fantastic!

Freddie Prinze Jr. Autograph Session Coming Soon Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Like many aspects of life over the past year, the convention circuit has suffered due to the pandemic. There have been some fun developments though where certain cons have found a way to creatively circumvent the coronavirus by hosting events virtually. GalaxyCon is one such venue, and they're hosting a variety of virtual activities through the spring. This includes an autograph session with Freddie Prinze Jr., star of Wing Commander, the new Punky Brewster show and several other popular movies and series. Fans can choose to have Mr. Prinze sign an 11x14 inch Wing Commander poster. A basic personalized autograph costs $92, and he'll inscribe an additional short message for $30 more. The cutoff is April 18, so get your orders in soon! We'd love to see what customizations you end up getting!

Fancy Hornet Available on Sketchfab Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here are some gorgeous shots of Klavs' new Hornet model. He's made a few variations over the years, but this is his most authentic to the original. He's stylized the guns and missiles a little bit, and the results are a pretty slick take on a classic. He's also packaged up and made the 3D model available on Sketchfab. Klavs has been incurring some significant medical bills for his daughter lately, but rather than post a donation campaign, he's offering up the 3D model in exchange for $25 to go towards his costs. And Sketchfab happens to be having a 30% off sale this weekend, so you can apply that coupon with the promo code SKETCHFABDAY to bring the amount you would pay for the ship down to $17.50. His Dralthi is also available for $10. If you've got a budding fan project that could use a super high quality fighter, this might be perfect for you!
Hi everyone, the Hornet is complete and up for sale on Sketchfab. Just asking $25 to offset some of my daughter's medical costs. 8k textures for that bit of extra detail!

GOG Kicks Off Spring Sale Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter has kicked off their annual spring sale, and there are plenty of great deals. The Wing Commander series is marked off a customary 75%, so individual games are just $1.49 or under $12 for the whole DOS & Windows series. Some other sci-fi favorites are also on sale, including Homeworld Remastered for just $3.49 or Rebel Galaxy Outlaw half off for $15. Also as a special reminder, the WC4 that GOG sells is the DVD edition, and it's easy to drop in ODVS' new videos to watch the cutscenes in full HD!

Collector's Corner: Compare & Contrast German WC4s Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

If you were on the hunt for all of the international copies and translations of Wing Commander, Dennis Mull has an extra twist for the German edition of Wing Commander 4! He's got two different versions with some minor differences. On a later printing, the back side font was cleaned up, the age rating sticker was printed on the box and a couple missing name credits were added. I love tiny things like this. Good luck hunting your copies down!
Release (right) and re-release (left). The differences are a different font on the back of the box and the sticker "USK 12" is printed on the box. Jeffrey "JC" Combs and Frank Roan are also added.

Enhanced WC3 Footage Adds Several Language Options Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

ODVS' enhanced video packs are well known for boosting the visual quality of the movies for WC3, WC4 and Prophecy, but the audio is another undertaking unto itself. Owen made significant strides last year to upscale the footage for the Heart of the Tiger, but he was limited to what he had on hand. Requests have streamed in recently to add different languages, and ODVS has been happy to oblige after obtaining the corresponding language packs. As a result, we now have German, French and Japanese editions of the enhanced WC3 cutscenes to share! Note that these are just for direct viewing at this time - there is not currently any way to integrate them into the actual game, but they're all set in case fans eventually figure out a way to do it someday.
And some comments on the future:
Until such time as we have that patch, I'm not developing the WC3 HD pack further. Should it ever arise though, I do have some improvements I'll be applying to an "in-game" version of the pack. I have better AI upscaling techniques now, I can interpolate the frame rate up without those blend frames between jump cuts, and I'd probably incorporate all four (so far) language audio streams into the files, so there would be one pack for all (although I'd need to liase with whoever developed the patch to make sure this could work).
Here are links as well for the latest iterations of the WC4 and Prophecy packs from last fall. The WC4 files drop right into the video folder for the DVD edition of The Price of Freedom. WCP can be upgraded by applying the DVD upgrade patch and then copying the files over.
And comments on WC4's future:
The WC4 HD pack has pretty much hit the limit of what the original game is able to play back. Development is ongoing, though, for the WC4 remake project. For that project, I'll be able to use h.265 encoding to get the overall file size down considerably, we'll have optional 60fps HFR playback, the AI upscale is far superior and, once again, all three languages will be streamed into each video. Suffice to say, the video for the remake will be far superior even to the most recent HD pack for the original game - and at close to half the file size.

Happy Holy Day of Acclivity! Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Today is the McDanielist—or Pilgrim—Holy Day of Acclivity! It celebrates the disappearance of the first sloship to reach Sirius on this day in 2311. Pilgrim theology teaches that the lost ship was translated to a higher plane of existence where it continues to guide the faithful. You can read all about it in our full writeup here.
The Final Exodus

By 2309, the governing body of the outer planets, the Outer Planet Policy Council (OPPC) was under the control of McDaniel’s followers and preparations were made to begin launching Morvan Drive “sloships” to settle distant stars. The first, the Exodia under Hella Ti and a crew of devout McDanielists, was launched on February 19, 2311 carrying McDaniel himself and 1,199 other colonists to settle Sirius A-B. On March 23, the Exodia made the final .22 light year hop to Sirius successfully. The slowship had barely launched its single-person scout when McDaniel felt an overpowering force making him look to the portside, where a glittering blue spot had appeared in space. The spot rapidly expanded, seeming to grow thousands of hostly tendrils until it had become a massive cloud five times the size of the Exodia. Captain Ti ordered scans, but they came back with nothing. The cloud quickly enveloped the ship, and McDaniel experienced a sudden happiness, a disappearance of ordinary human discomforts and a sound of music playing. His final recorded words: “Whatever it is, it’s beautiful.”

Further Pilgrim theology teaches that McDaniel and the crew of the Exodia were translated directly to a higher plane of existence and that McDaniel continues to spiritually direct his followers from this new plane. Surviving McDanielists insisted that leaving the Sol System was the responsibility of the Elect and additional sloship journeys were successfully completed. Colonies at Alpha Centauri, Proxima Centauri, Cygnus and Sirius were quickly established, followed by eight more in places like Tamayo, Triune, Luyten, Faith, Beacon, Promise and McDaniel’s World. By the end of the 24th Century, all of McDaniel’s followers, who prior to this point had come to make up 75% of the population of the off-world colonies, had successfully left the Sol System for the twelve colony worlds established as the Pilgrim Alliance. It was around this time that the term Pilgrim came into use, initially referring to those who booked passage out of the Sol System and later coming to refer to all of the Elect. With the practical completion of the Exodus, contact with Titan and Earth was cut off save for the occasional semicovert trading mission and the two cultures continued to move in very different paths.

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Pretty Snappy Banshee Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Mark Gabby-Li has a great physical Banshee model to share today. It might look like it came out of a bespoke kit, but this is actually made just from Snapships parts! Last year we highlighted how these new space toys could be tweaked to build some more familiar designs, and it's wonderful to see fans taking up the challenge. And that papercraft Banshee on the side is pretty slick too!
My first attempt at a remix of a spaceship from (relatively) popular culture: Wing Commander IV's Banshee!

You know, making fan models of spaceships with Lego or Snapships feels a little like a sort of poetry. You are trying to capture the essence, as the pieces you have limit your ability to perfectly replicate it.

Get Hyped for 1999's Hottest VHS Release! Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here's a gem straight out of the 1999 time capsule! It's from the May 24 issue of Video Business, a trade publication for the home video market that shut down in 2010. Everything about it screams "late '90s."
  • TODAY'S HOTTEST YOUNG STARS! Freddie Prinze Jr. & Matthew Lillard of SHE'S ALL THAT!
  • Trailered on Pushing Tin, Waking Ned Devine and Office Space
  • Available Day and Date on DVD!
The actual release happened on July 6. I remember we were all pretty darn excited that day, but not as excited as this poster ever was!
"Starship Troopers" Meets "Top Gun" in this $12 Million Box Office Blast! is a trade advertisement announcing the VHS release of Wing Commander.

See How WC2 Concept Cockpits Stack Up Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

I went back and compared those Wing Commander 2 WIP cockpits we recovered with the final assets. Check out these Broadsword turrets which lose, among other things, the hand graphics!
A set of three hard drives belonging to an unidentified Origin Systems employee was recovered by Joe Garrity of the Origin Museum and Dan Chisarick. The contents included installations of Wing Commander I and II and a copy of DeluxePaint with several Wing Commander II-related animation files saved.

While the images were originally stored as ANM animation files they are actually collections of static images, likely grouped together as animations for ease of organization and/or presentation. Inividual unique frames have been saved as PCX files and exported as PNGs for the galleries seen below.

Some are pretty similar, like the Epee... ... while others like the Ferret are very different! You can find them all here!
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XBox Game Pass Finally Gets Access to EA Play While WC Games Removed from Play Service Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Electronic Arts and Microsoft have announced that Xbox Game Pass (PC and Ultimate) members finally have access to the EA Play catalog on PC. We reported last year that this would include the five Wing Commander games on the service, however, it appears that they've been removed from the EA Play subscription as part of yesterday's big update. The screenshots below show what the WC pages looked like before and after the removal. It was also announced last year that EA's Origin storefront would be going away, but that transition is still in progress and the Origin-branded store portal still carries the WC games for $4.99 each. In comparison, GOG typically charges $5.99 each, but they bundle WC1&2 together into one. They also frequently have sales that bring each package down to $1.49. While this is a bummer for the (admittedly tiny) handful of WC fans who may have been holding out for the new Xbox arrangement, the Game Pass Ultimate service is still an excellent deal for many people.
Electronic Arts is excited about the next milestone in our ongoing commitment to give players more choice on how to access the games and in-game benefits they love. Since November, EA Play* has been available to all Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members on console and starting today, Xbox Game Pass PC and Ultimate members can also get more from their favorite EA games. Through the EA Desktop app, our next-generation PC platform that’s currently in open beta, and the Xbox app for Windows 10, members will receive access to EA Play and get exclusive in-game challenges and rewards, a collection of outstanding games in The Play List, 10% savings on purchases of EA digital content, and trial access to full versions of select new releases.

Hellcat Art Takes WC Sketches to New Heights Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

We've got lots of pretty ships in the news this week! The designs that we've shared the last couple days have been high quality digital models, but today's work is a little different. Nightball06 has returned to his hand-drawn Hellcat sketch. At first glance, it might look like these are different rotated perspectives of a computerized model, but they're actually digital sketches. He's taken a few liberties to streamline and enhance a few general elements and is looking for feedback below!
Hey folks, Well since Corona has its deadly clasp all over the world - I hope you're all well. And with all those Lock-downs, the one good thing that disease gave me is time to work on my design again... (As I mentioned before - it's also some kind of stress relief for me)

So here’s my latest attempt:
I went back to my first drawing (the perspective one / left upper corner) because that's where all my ideas started. I took it as a benchmark and then reworked all the other angles according to it. I wanted them to fit - should anyone ever feel inclined to overlay them. What I came up with is a much tighter main-body; a more narrow wing span than that of the original HC-V, pushed that a little further back to make it look more dynamic; added a weapons design that is Excalibur-inspired; a cockpit-design inspired by the F-14 Tomcat ... and new more powerful engines that are not completely inserted into the wings.

AND THAT's where I got stuck. I really like the top-view and rear-view of those new engines ... but then? As of this moment I have no idea how the main body’s rear part could look like? I was thinking about a jump-drive maybe?

If you have any comments or ideas - let me know. Thanks in advance.


Drawing a Line Between Two Rapier IIs Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Klavs is back with his latest take on the renowned Rapier medium fighter. He's made quite a few variants over the years, but his latest version sticks close to the original WC1 inspiration. Side by side, there are actually quite a few notable differences in the spaceframe from WC1 to WC2, so Klavs has worked out a creative approach to both the original and "G" variant. The 2660s version pictured below is strongly rooted in the 2650s design, and various changes are shown as outgrowths of that. The results are pretty slick!
Hi everyone, I got to liking the A model rapier so much I started thinking about incremental tech advancements rather than a whole new spaceframe for the C-G models, so I've envisioned that here and I'm really liking the results so far! I think the 'chunkiness' fits the WC-1-2 era much better than the swoopy Rapiers I've done before.

Hellcats Ready to Tackle Animated Sartha Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

We've got a pair of fantastic new animated-style fighters from DefianceIndustries up today. The first is a Hellcat (featured in the first episode of WCA) in fancy green colors inspired by Tim Eldred's concept art. I like it. It fits the era when greens were much more prominent on ships like the Tiger's Claw or Exeter destroyers. On the Kilrathi side, we also get a nice orange Sartha. They're tiny weaklings, but you can't treat them like Salthi - those neutron guns will tear you up!
A bit of a grab bag. Got around to doing the WCA Sartha which should almost round out the fleet. Eventually I'll have to do the Jalkethi and I think that's all the fighters. Additionally I did a WC3 style Hellcat using the paint scheme from the Tim Eldred concept art that was posted here about a week ago. Enjoy as always.

Get a Closer Look at 1998 3Dfx Ad Featuring a Vampire Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

KrisV noticed that the popular LGR video game Youtube channel frequently provides a glimpse at a retro poster that seems to sport a Vampire from Wing Commander Prophecy. Upon closer investigation, apparently a lot of people ask about that art, and so there's a whole video covering it! It turns out to not actually be a proper poster, but rather, a spread from the February 1998 issue of Next Generation magazine. One side has a table of dozens of new 3Dfx-enabled games while the reverse is a trendy collage with some of the hottest stars to be enhanced by the Voodoo chipset. This includes a nice Vampire nose and nacelle! There are also a handful of Prophecy screenshots intermixed throughout as well. We get a close look at the Midway's bridge as well as a Panther trailing a Hydra cruiser in these. Check out the full video below!
Checking out the 3Dfx poster thing hanging up beside my IBM PC AT, since I've received a buncha questions about it! It's a fold-out ad seen in Next Gen magazine in 1998.

Movie's Costume Designer Shows Off Concept Gallery Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

AD found a really cool trove of movie concept art images! Costume designer Magali Guidasci contributed to films such as Leon, Zombieland, Armageddon and Wing Commander. And she's posted a fantastic gallery online that shows off how many of the film's most iconic outfits began. Perhaps most notably, there's even a mockup for the deleted Merlin character, Blair's holographic assistant! Check them out below:
AD: Found the WC movie's costume designer's site and she has some cools from the movie - including a concept for Merlin - that I hadn't seen before! Magali Guidasci is the talented artist behind the costumes on films like La Femme Nikita and Armageddon.

LOAF: True excitement tonight: this unused costume concept for the Merlin hologram! VERY different from the storyboards and other art we've seen.

Movie Mashup Showcases Space Battles Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

To keep the Wing Commander Movie's birthday train rolling another day, here's a medley by Illustrated Fiction. It condenses down many of the spaceflight scenes into a tight mini film. While the ship designs received an understandably mixed reception, the actual action-packed CGI portions of the movie were just great. Here's a chance to appreciate them together! They also paired this with a nice writeup, which you can find here.
Wing Commander (the movie) is a guilty pleasure and it is something of an oddity in that it feels both very much of its time - especially in terms of its casting - but also like a curious throwback to the 1970s and 80s.

The movie, based on the popular video game series, was released in 1999, in the middle of the CG revolution sweeping through cinemas by the late 90s (Matrix, Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, etc). The movie is a mix of rubbery aliens rubbing shoulders with relatively decent CGI for the time.

The story centers on a protagonist hotshot 26th-century pilot, Lieutenant Christopher Blair played by Freddie Prinze Jr, who finds himself in the midst of an intergalactic war between humans and the antagonists of the story, the so-called alien 'Kilrathi' that threatens to destroy Earth. Blair joins forces with his superior space cadets Lieutenant 'Angel' Deveraux (Saffron Burrows), Captain Sansky (David Suchet) and Admiral Tolwyn (David Warner).

Happy Birthday Wing Commander Movie! A Fun Rundown: Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

It’s Friday here which means... happy 22nd birthday to the Wing Commander movie! 🎉🎉🎉

When the movie came out, I took my first ever cross country trip without my parents to attend the premiere in Austin, Texas. My best friend Chris Reid, also a rising high school student, flew in from the other side of the country. Before that week in March we'd been only IRC messages to one another and now we were flesh and blood humans. The whole experience had this sense of a jump to adulthood and to the next iteration our lives. And we did not care that the movie had changed the look of the space fighters or recast the heroes or even that last minute editing had made the plot incomprehensible to anyone who hadn't read the screenplay and the novelization beforehand. (Of course when you're eighteen you know that everyone has your same experiences so it stands to reason that everyone had read the screenplay and the novelization beforehand!)
Here’s ChrisReid and me at the Wing Commander Austin premiere! Very fancy. Digital Anvil created this one minute Wing Commander video as a test to prove they could handle the effects work needed to make the movie. It was shown to audiences at SXSW in 1998! The scene is likely familiar as it’s an earlier version of the concom encounter from the movie (with Maniac instead of Angel). And it uses fighter designs from the games for the Rapier and Dralthi!
The effort to make the movie started at Origin in 1996 where a set of lush painted storyboards for this scene were created. The full series is here. And the costumes are familiar, too! They’re left over Confederation flight suits and Black Lance helmets from Wing Commander IV. Have a big old map! This is a detailed recreation of the six foot wide map painting used in Wing Commander’s opening credits. Did you pay to see Wing Commander to catch the Phantom Menace trailer? Everyone remembers doing this even though it resulted in pretty much no impact at the box office. Here’s the full story. Here’s a thread I did for the CIC Twitter account identifying all the supporting cast from Wing Commander’s credits. And here’s one that teaches you all the rank insignias developed by the art department!

Here’s a (LONG) thread I’m especially proud of that tracks the history behind the real life Lightning jets that were converted to Rapiers for Wing Commander! And if you made it through all that, here’s its twin covering the Broadsword cockpit used in the movie!

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WC4 Fan Remake Talks Programming & Demo Timing Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

The WC4 Fan Remake team has a new update that touches on a variety of subjects. To start with, they've announced that the release of their playable demo will likely slide from this summer out to a later date in 2021. There are a few changes coming for it, but overall the main message is that lots of good progress is being made. To drive the point home about how complex this can be, however, the new article also has a detailed discussion about programming math that gives you a glimpse at the effort involved here. They could still use help in the 3D art and programming realms, so contact Pedro and the gang if that sounds like a role for you! Read the entire update at WCRespace here.
In order to minimize the delay one change we’re looking at is replacing the Intrepid model from the demo with the Lexington, which is already complete. The choice to use the Intrepid was always odd anyway as the gameflow in the demo is from the Lexington. This should free up Defiance to focus on other work that needs to be completed.

We have still made progress, and we now know what we need to for the demo – however we want to take extra time to add polish to ensure our first impression is a good one.

One issue is that we still haven’t found extra help in the roles of 3D art or programming. If you have the time and skills to contribute please let us know; it really will speed up development.

Union of Custom Lego Pieces Produces Great Little Banshee Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

AD found a neat new Lego creation over at Bricklink. It's a mini Banshee created by CBSNAKE. A lot of Lego miniatures make compromises and don't resemble their intended inspiration particularly well, but wow, this just nails it! All the key features are depicted, and the colors are even spot on. This would be a fun project to actually source the pieces and build!

Splashy X-Gen Preview Sets Up Wing Commander IV Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Yesterday we talked about WC4 rumors in the press, and today's the whole big preview. A lot of magazines got in to glitzy cover stories on Wing Commander 4 like this, which was fabulous to see on news stands in game stores in the mid '90s. Based on the success of WC3 just a year earlier, editors weren't going to miss out on this, and the January 1996 issue of X-Gen is a prime example of a flashy six-page preview of the game. They gush about the production values and technical benchmarks that the game sets. They also talk about how it was made with Playstation development in mind (WC3 was actually the first PSX game, shortly after PC WC4 shipped). The article also has some nice storyboard art and set photos, which can be somewhat uncommon for this shoot. Good stuff!
Blair, Maniac and Admiral Tolwyn return in the biggest games production of all-time. Wing Commander IV is the most expensive, most lavish videogames project ever undertaken, and for the first time, the latest instalment of the award-winning series will make an appearance on the Sony PlayStation. Dave Perry talks to executive producer Chris Roberts about working on the PlayStation, spending millions of dollars and breaking into Hollywood.

1994 CGW Teases Rumors of Wing Commander 4 Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Today's update is a brief one, but this tiny column off to the side of a December 1994 CGW page brings back some huge memories. Many fans had yet to even play Wing Commander 3 at this point, but early signs were that it was a huge hit, and Origin/EA were ready to strike again with a blockbuster sequel. Although WC4 ultimately did slide out from Christmas 1995 to February 1996, it was still a very fast turnaround. The Wing Commander franchise was firing on all cylinders at this point, and anything seemed possible! Thanks to Shot97 for spotting this one. Just a year later, we'd have this on the cover of CGW!

German Translation for DOS WC1 Released! Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Marty2Life has had great success with the project he first shared last month to convert the original Wing Commander over to German. The translation has technically existed since 1992 on the SNES and Amiga, but was never available in the more popular DOS edition of the game. He's done a really comprehensive conversion here that goes beyond just the cinematic and conversational text. Everything from the main menu to the in-flight systems have (mostly) been ported over. Marty intends to tackle the Secret Missions next and then eventually circle around to ensure compatibility with other variants such as the Kilrathi Saga. You can grab the patch here (570 k zip). Installation is as simple as copying the key files over your WC1 installation (so backup first as needed).
Hello all Pilots,

After almost 30 years the time has come ...​

Wing Commander 1 in German

Thanks to the toolbox (a great thing) and the decrunched Wing Commander Amiga file, I was finally able to Translate in German. The first version of Wing Commander and the Amiga and the SNES version are no longer a single case as far as localization is concerned.

Why necessarily German?

Well, since I grew up on the Amiga, there was the first Wing Commander game in German for me. So not in English as with the PC users. For me it was just standard. Years later, after switching to the PC, I wondered why there was only the English version on the PC. Also with the CDRom re-releases as well as with the Kilrathi Saga version, although the WC3 version of the subtitles is multilingual (En, Fr, De) and that with the success in the 90's. That it was not localized into other languages for the PC is a mystery to me. Maybe that will be clarified :). In any case, I am personally as happy as a little child that this action still worked out.

Translating the first part is a with almost 4000 lines (all files combined).

Supports the following version: Wing Commander Version B2.4: HI 3.5 ( 3 Disk)​

It would be good if a couple could get together to test the translation. I'm not a wandering Duden either. You can always throw out suggestions, improvements, criticism and so on.

greetings Marty

Richard Garriott Reaches Challenger Deep Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Origin founder Richard Garriott has reached another personal goal. This past week he completed a successful dive to the Challenger Deep at the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the lowest known point in the ocean. This makes him the first person to reach both the North and South Poles as well as travel to outer space! Fewer people have been to the bottom of the ocean than set foot on the moon, so this is no small feat! Deep sea veteran Victor Vescovo served as guide and pilot. The oceanic trip coincided with World Book Day, so Mr. Garriott recorded several reading videos during the adventure. He was also recently elected president of the Explorers Club and has no plans for slowing down. He ultimately hopes to reach Mars! From the Daily Mail:
From the expedition ship Pressure Drop Mr Garriott said: 'I've been to the bottom of the Earth – you can't go deeper than that. It was a descent into darkness in the truest sense.

'Even though it's a four-hour journey to the bottom, you are going down fast. At the bottom I saw his monstrously long cable [left by a previous expedition] littering the seafloor. That was very sad.

'There was a variety of small lifeforms, small sea cucumber-related creatures and translucent creatures like flatworms.'

Digital Antiquarian Explores Wing Commander's Leap to Interactive Movies Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

The Digital Antiquarian has posted a lengthy article on the history of Wing Commander 3. Much like his previous works, the piece is extensively researched and draws on both archival materials and personal interviews to build the historical context for game. It's a good recap of what WC3 was and how it came to be. The later parts of the article shift more into a meta review from the perspective of 2021. Our author here comes across as fairly critical of the more formulaic missions, binary nature of the plot choices and cheesiness of big space cats. He seems to realize the tonal shift is somewhat jarring after talking about how impressive a product WC3 is, so he ends on a conciliatory note. You can check out the full article here.
The presence of so many recognizable actors on the set, combined with the broader mass-media excitement over multimedia and CD-ROM, brought a parade of mainstream press to the shoot. The Today show, VH-1, the Los Angeles Times, Premiere magazine, the Associated Press, USA Today, Newsweek, Forbes, and Fortune were just some of the media entities that stopped in to take some pictures, shoot some video, and conduct a few interviews. At a time when the likes of DOOM was still well off the mainstream radar, Wing Commander III was widely accepted as the prototype for gaming’s inevitable future.

Nostalgically Nibble at WC History Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Coffeehound RetroSharka has published a fun video in her Nostalgic Nibbles series. This one focuses on the Super Nintendo version of Wing Commander. The author here has a lot of positive things to say about the game, and they're coming from a place of experience. She played the original Amiga Wing Commander and picked up the SNES version not long after its release. They've even played the Sega CD edition and Super Wing Commander on 3DO but considers this version a favorite. I have to agree - there are many limitations compared to the DOS release that most folks are familiar with, but the game's punchy opening music coming through lo-fi speakers is just an indelible memory. The controls were dense for a console at the time, but it was possible to do almost everything in the cockpit that a PC could. This is a good overview of the game, although I can't forgive the person for pronouncing SNES as "SNES" instead of "Super Nintendo."
In the mid-27th century, humanity is locked in a deadly struggle, a seemingly endless war, against the Kilrathi. Into this battle against the territorial alien felines steps 2nd Lieutenant Valkyr, known by the callsign 'Valkyrie', fresh out of OCS and assigned to the TCS Tiger's Claw in the Enyo Sector. Let us see how they fare on their first mission via the lovely SNES port of this Amiga and DOS PC classic.

Academy Storyboarding: Tim Eldred Goes In Depth Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Renowned comic and storyboard artist Tim Eldred has posted an awesome article about how he got involved with Wing Commander Academy and how it influenced the rest of his career. It's a combination of being in the right place at the right time as well as having the knack for visualizing the series' key concepts in engaging ways. He's got lots of fun concept art in the piece, including these two glorious shots. We've posted versions of them before without the color, but they really pop here fully illustrated like this.
When I sat down to watch Episode 3 (on a Saturday morning), it was a revelation to see my work on TV for the first time. In addition to what I mentioned earlier, this was also a case where some characters I designed were moving through scenes I created. It looked like I had somehow drawn every frame of this Saturday morning cartoon. I was also surprised to see that some of my shots were chosen for the opening title, which I took as a huge compliment. The unexpected magic that played out at the beginning of this process resulted in unexpected magic at the end. I was elated. This was going to be my career.
Also, be sure to check out the links shooting off from the main article. There are several high quality storyboard sets that give you a great glimpse behind the scenes prior to animation. There's also a cool character sketch gallery as well!
In particular, there was an enemy fighter that kept flying directly at our hero fighters in a game of chicken. I found the right combination of shots to build and build and BUILD that tension until someone chickened out. I could feel it happening intuitively, and it was exhilarating. When I eventually saw the finished episode, it exactly matched what I was going for. There was never a moment where I sat down with Larry and told him what I’d intended. The storyboards did the talking. Which is exactly what they’re supposed to do.

The Concordia Rocks (in Any Language) Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

A cool Wing Commander II preview in Spanish! Posted by La Abadía del Juego.
This is first news I'd seen about Wing Commander. Here they talked about part 2, and in Spain the first had not even come out. One of the sagas that has affected me the most in all my life.
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Holiday Advert Promotes Origin's First Season on CD Update ID Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Here's a fun Origin advertising pamphlet that you might not have seen if you weren't on Origin's mailing list (like Dan Gheesling was). This brochure went out to promote the holiday lineup on CD. Wing Commander 3 gets top billing, of course, with special mention of the Premiere Edition that was only available via direct sale from EA. A lot of collectors picked theirs up on eBay after the fact without realizing these weren't readily available in stores, although a similar boxed film reel edition was sold at Sam's Club. The reverse side is a System Shock sandwich flanked by Wings of Glory and Bioforge. This sheet represents a magical time in Origin history. The company was no longer held back by the limitations of floppy disks, and they were taking full advantage of the new disc format!
Origin's Holiday CD Line Up is a folded mailer which was sent to registered customers to promote the companys 1994 CD-ROM lineup which included Wing Commander III.
Heart of the Tiger blazes into the entertainment industry with ORIGIN's latest installment in the successful Wing Commander series. This unique gaming experience exposes space sim players to a new world founded on cinematic style and cutting-edge technology. Live, professional actors matted on stunning synthetic sets evoke real emotion throughout the game. As a player, you guide morale by how you interact with other characters. Four CDs hold full speech, explosive sound, an interactive plot and thousands of live action video images. Wing Commander III hands you complete control over the continuing Terran-Kilrathi conflict. As Hollywood-type film techniques merge with computer graphics, ORIGIN leads the way by creating an interactive movie starring you!
I guess the "thousands of live action video images" refer to individual frames of FMV? That's an interesting way to say it.

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