Farbourne has put together a neat app that compares the stats of Wing Commander 3 fighters. The numbers themselves are readily available, but the charm comes from the ability to pit two ships against each other. Each attribute is compared, and the fighter with the advantage in each category is highlighted. The program also gives tips on how each craft should take on each other craft, and it goes beyond the perspective of the four Confed fighters. Sure, you can see how a Hellcat compares with a Dralthi, but you can also ask the program what to do if you found yourself in, say, an Ekapshi vs a Bloodfang, an Arrow vs a Sorthak or a Strakha vs an Excalibur.
The tool is in the form of an Excel macro, and a full version of Microsoft Excel may be required (Google Docs and the free Excel Viewer do not work). Hit the Discuss link to let Farbourne know what you think or if you find another software suite that runs this. Grab it here (6 meg xls).
I have a little fan project I've been working on that I wanted to share with the community. Some time back, as you may recall, I was working on a Wing Commander ship comparer built in Microsoft Excel, that hearkens back to the old glory days of combat simulators--the great old game Chuck Yeager's Air Combat. That game included a fighter comparer that allowed you to put two fighters side by side, compare their stats, and get some sage advice from Yeager himself on how to win an encounter. I built something similar to that for WC1, but never finished it due to difficulties in determining exactly what the specific ship stats actually were.
Now, in honor of WC3 being released on GOG, I've built a finished version featuring the ships from WC3. It is much improved over the original. I thought some in the community might get a kick out of playing with it, especially if they're old enough to remember Chuck Yeager's Air Combat. (There's a few little tributes to that old game in this comparer for the sharp-eyed with a good memory). And for rookies trying WC3 for the first time, the engagement advice might actually be useful in some cases.
One important thing...to be used, it must be opened in MS Excel, and macros must be enabled. I built it in a very old version of Excel (Office 1997), but it should be compatible with any version since then. It does NOT work in GoogleDocs (because it makes use of substantial VBA scripting that GoogleDocs does not support).
If folks like this, I might revisit the WC1 version, and maybe make a WC2, WC4, Prophecy, or SecretOps version. Or maybe even a version that compares ships across eras... But that's a lot of work. For now, I'll just offer up the WC3 version.