Until now we had been in what I would describe as pre-production. When we wanted to show off a new ship I would make a new entity definition by hand, completely ignoring the ship stats, missile stats, manually setting what classic model to use.
Now I intend to turn that process on its head and start dynamically generating entity definitions based on the data when you load the game. This is an involved process but if goes to plan it should mean that the manual work involved is significantly reduced.
Peep that weird version of Origin’s interactive movie logo!
The GOG digital games are also on sale at their customary 75% off at $1.49. This is an absolutely steal and can't come more highly recommended. The Academy DVDs seem to have been restocked and have returned to their $8 price. It can be unpredictable when copies are available, and it's always possible that the show could disappear from Peacock, so $8 is critical insurance to make sure you always have access to the show.
The CIC Drink Coasters are also on sale for 20% off today with coupon code BLACKFRI2021. This drops the price to about $20. As previously mentioned, we don't make a penny on the sale of these, but they're pretty cool and we wanted to share the fun.
|Games ($1.49 each)|
|Movies & TV|
On a more lighthearted note, Thanksgiving has become decidedly less focused on the historical Pilgrims as we learn more of our history there, but there's still a fun Pilrgrim story you can enjoy! This year marks a full decade since we were able to share Wing Commander Pilgrim Truth, Peter Telep's third and canceled novel in the Wing Commander movie novelization series. Fortunately, he graciously allowed us to host the novel here at the CIC back in 2011. You can read it online or grab it in .mobi (Kindle) or .epub (iBooks and other) formats. Enjoy!
Got around to doing the rest of the series. Please try them out and let me know how it goes. They are written specifically for the GOG versions of the games. The DOS games have a custom interface to allow for multiple options and ease of use. Working on Kilrathi Saga currently, but I hope this will suffice!
Privateer 2 German, English, Italian, Spanish, Greek, Polish and Special Edition Release:
The Empire of Kilrah, your one stop shop for those really aggressive looking transports. William Tell and associated Gilgameshians are ready to go. Working on the Ralatha.
The Wing Commander movie wasn’t the first time we got a terrible approach to mourning! Super Wing Commander had characters with stripes shaved in their heads to honor their dead. Naturally this needed to be explained in the manual, lest anyone assume it was just sci-fi hair:
Hi, I'm enjoying the fact that there's new and old Privateer 2 content still appearing.
I needed a quick prop for a thing I'm working on. It had to be the Veldor from Privateer 2, a random pirate ship so loved that even Google has forgotten about it. So I kitbashed one together from Drake parts in about an hour (and then too many more hours on this presentation).
Now it's the Drake Veldor, a medium fighter loved by pirates that hate themselves.
It will be part of a bigger Privateer 2 related animation project still in the works.
Finally attached the fins, wooo! Basic shape basically (lulz) done. I think. It's 1/48 scale actually. About 30 cm in diameter, I think
Engine exhausts are ready and just have to be glued on. Detailing will start now and then painting. Still worried about the canopy, though, because I have no idea how to do it.
Some screens of the EGA version of Wing Commander II. I'm used to seeing this game in the far more colourful VGA version, but I'm still kind of amazed at how much the artists did with just 16 colours.
The year is 2669. You just inherited an obsolete Tarsus merchant ship from your grandfather. What you decide to do with it an the few remaining credits that you have is up to you! Although the Tarsus is showing its age and has been discontinued, the platform still has great potential for upgrades for those who wish to strike out on their own in the universe. The cockpit was never known for great visibility and can be a bit cramped (some would say cosy). There's room enough for a crew of two.
**All vanilla build. Due to removal of supergrids by default settings, I've removed flightseats and replaced them with standard seats and a control block. If there's demand I can upload the supergrid version with flightseats as well. This ship is survival ready but it doesn't have a survival kit on board. You'll have to add one yourself.
- To pilot, sit in a control seat and access the remote control block.
- Primary thrust system: 4 Large H2 thrusters and plenty of fuel tanks to get you where you need to go. Its an older technology but packs a punch.
- Secondary Thrust system: 2 small emergency ion thrusters in case you run out of fuel in space.
- Atmospheric Thrust system: Yes! She can make planetary re-entry, land to drop off and pick up new cargo and then return to space again.
- Manuverability: This baby has been upgraded in the recent past, she's not your grandfather's tarsus! Oh, well it still is, just better!
Due to the fact there aren't any windows on small grid ships, I put in a projection type window system. Turn on the projector to see the windscreen.
Still gives me chills.
Here's a quick update to the TTS version of TACOPS. There is a version on Steam for playtesting though it is currently locked down for my Steam friends only. But I'm pretty close to being ready to release the starter pack to the public. Maybe next week or two. I need to finish a few additional figures for it. I added the Clydesdale and spent most of my time this week revising the rules (which will also be available in the game). I left the content largely unchanged from the original, and instead focused on organization of the material, fixing typos, and adding missing rules (like mine fields, pilot ejections, critical hits, etc.). Feel free to look them over and let me know what you think.
Enjoy fellow wingnuts!
This one image stirred a lot of speculation online, and the ship in particular drove a lot of conversation. More than a few folks observed similarities to the Excalibur, and Mac took it one step further with this tantalizing photoshop. To say again: this is just a fan mockup, but it's so nice on the eyes that we're excited to share! It might even make a good wallpaper. A Wingnut can dream...
I'm looking at the ship and I keep thinking it looks like a more advanced Excalibur from Wing CommanderYou can find more of Mac's work on YouTube.
I mean, I'm not the only one seeing it. Right?
Digging around on some backup drives, I found some old unused concept art for Privateer 2 from Paul Chapman...
Wing Commander 4: The Price of Freedom (1995)- My studio was hired to create the external design for the games solo Kilrathi character, Melek (Chris Bergschneider) by the animatronics superivsor Bud McGrew. It was a great responsibility and honor to work on a show of this caliber with the level of talent in front of the camera and behind the scenes and I was lucky to have so many good people around in the lab. I seem to recall we had maybe six weeks to produce this, plus a number of costume elements and even a diseased corpse and then over to (the then) Ren-Mar Studios to shoot. This shot of Melek taken by myself on set was purely accidental and somehow, captured the character perfectly.Here's a few older shots for comparison. Melek's Head was posted on eBay for $9,000+. It didn't sell, and his current whereabouts are unknown.
To quote Gold Leader: "Almost there...." I revamped the game using the Chimera table which made more ergonomic sense. Currently it's set up for 2 players (with an option for 4, though the table seats 6 so you could go nuts)
I added a bowl of pegs so you can track the status on the ship cards easier, added a copy of the rules for each side, as well as all the missile tiles (DF, HS, IMREC, FoF, Torp). It's about 90% there for some playtesting. I need to do some nifty graphics for a mod page header and a few other things but I'll post it up on Steam and let folks. During playtesting I'll limit it to my steam friends so if we're not, (and you're interested) hit me up.
Each seat at the table that is active also has bags in each of the containers with additional figurines, ship cards (for both confed and Kat) as well as bags with all the universal counters & missiles.
Ever wonder why Righteous Fire had such an elaborate rendered intro focused on a mech you never see again? It was leftover content that was originally cut from the base Privateer game!The scene was created as a losing endgame which would play if you landed with a negative credit balance. To save space, the design was tweaked to make that case impossible. RF’s writer wrote a new script for the existing footage explaining your Steltek gun was stolen!
This is a very straightforward project. The artwork for all seven coins is done, quotes have been obtained for manufacture. All we need is enough backers to cover the costs of production and shipping, and we can place the orders. Once I receive the coins, I'll ship them to all participants. I've previously had successful runs of Babylon 5 and Battlestar Galactica challenge coins, and everyone was very satisfied, so the process is pretty well down.
When the pandemic started, I was just moving into serious playtesting of the Star Fighter tabletop game. And that curb-stomped my playtesting efforts. So with all of that, I put work on the game on the shelf for the time being. So with a little looking, I'm gonna use Tabletop Simulator to facilitate playtesting and development. Once I do some review and re-write of the basic rules, I'll be looking for people who have TTS and want to play with it. So keep an eye open if you're interested.
I figured I'd catch folks up on all the WC stuff I've been doing. Aside from working on the WC4 remake which is still plugging along, I recently started doing a version of the fan hex-game Wing Commander TacOps using table top simulator.
I'm making custom figurines and tiles, as well as fighter punch cards to help keep your stats organized. Phase 1 is a basic dogfight scenario, 2 Rapier II's vs. 3 Drakhri. That's for play testing purposes. I will then expand it to include figurines and cards for all the ships in the basic set of TacOps for your hex-based amusement. If I get time, I may well back port in the WC1 assets as well so you can get your Vega on should you so desire. I plan on refreshing the PDF rules as well as time permits. I'll update everyone when its up on the Steam workshop, but until then, here's a few screen shots to keep you tided over.
We all know Mark Hamill once saved the universe while waving a lightsaber in a galaxy far, far away. But did you know he also saved Earth by dropping a tectonic bomb on the war-hungry planet of Kilrah? Then he followed up those heroics by staving off a civil war through exposing the plans of a warmongering admiral played by Malcolm McDowell, whose character’s motivations preceded those of Call of Duty’s similarly minded General Shepherd by 13 years.
Wing Commander, a series that debuted on Microsoft Disk Operating System in 1990, helped shape space simulators and evolved into one of the most immersive, interactive sci-fi experiences with the release of “Wing Commander III: Heart of the Tiger.” The third entry into the series pivoted away from the pixelated space fights found in the first two games, replacing them with polygon-rich battles bookended by interactive, live-action video sequences that featured a branching plot with RPG-like decision-making. Hamill played the lead as Colonel Christopher “Maverick” Blair, the commander of a space fighter squadron in the final days of an enduring war against the Kilrathi, an alien race of catlike bipeds for whom war and conquest is sport.
The mainline series extended to five games, culminating with “Wing Commander: Prophecy” in 1997, but also produced numerous spin-offs. Those included the open-ended, open-galaxy “Wing Commander: Privateer,” in which players could play the role of a mercenary, trading, taking on contracts or pirating while totally ignoring the main plot, if so desired. Bethesda’s much-anticipated “Starfield,” releasing in 2022, figures to be a good approximation of that same “go wherever the solar winds take you” experience. Chris Roberts, who created the Wing Commander series, now has a new space-based MMO called “Star Citizen,” currently playable in its alpha state. — Mike Hume
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