Whew, we're finally there! After years of hard work (and about 36 hours of insane crunch time) we're officially two years old. You are our first guests as we enter our third year at www.wcnews.com. I really wish I could write something more eloquent, but it's been a bit exhaustive here. Anyhow, we're happy you could be here with us. There have been a huge number of changes in the Wing Commander community since our first birthday, and those fans that remain today are some of the toughest and most dedicated. We're proud to share our fandom with you. Everyone wants a new Wing Commander game, and by this time next year we certainly won't have one. And we probably won't by the birthday after that or the one after that. But that's no matter. We have been blessed with dozens of hours of material to enjoy already. And there is more to come. EA and Origin may have been frozen from our point of view, but there are things to look for on the horizon. Bastei Lübbe continues to convert and print Wing Commander novels in Germany, and things of that sort will provide a commercial side to the continuation of Wing Commander. More importantly for us however, is the renewed interested in fan projects and community we have here online. We have more active projects now than ever before, and they are more promising than any have ever been before. Below you'll find information on the first complete project and a new section devoted to such items in general. But we're getting ahead of ourselves and off topic. We'd like to thank you for visiting and welcome you once again, we hope you enjoy what we have to present today, our second birthday.
Kdown asked us to let everyone know that the Black Lance HQ is down and not to do things such as mail to any of the @blacklance.org addresses. You can temporarily find the site here. Things should resume normally shortly.
By popular demand, and just because we can, we have completed a guide to most of the weapons from all WC games. This guide is part of the Ships Database which has changed a lot since it was first unveiled one year ago. Check it out!
For those of you who are interested, here are some statistics about the CIC that we've collected:
The main CIC server holds over 160 megabytes of HTMLs and images with several hundred megs of other files being kindly hosted by others. The CIC server transfers over 220 megs per day of its more than 5000 files (over 1000 of which are HTMLs) to its visitors. The CIC front page has now had well over one million hits from nearly 120 countries and at one point had over 10,000 different people in a day viewing its news. Speaking of news updates, there are now more than 2350. The most visited area of the CIC is the Chat Zone which now averages 2200 posts per month. The largest area of the CIC is the Ships Database which alone consists of 463 HTMLs and over 500 images. Aaaand... get this.. more than fifty people have reached the CIC by searching for "www.wcnews.com" in their preferred search engine!
This collection of documents was given out to people to help advertise the Wing Commander Academy TV show back in 1996. It's especially interesting because it contains a lot of background information about the Wing Commander Universe that has not been seen before! It also contains some fascinating insights into what Universal planned to do with the show, had it continued on to a second season. The guide was given to me by Joe Garrity, to whom I am eternally greatful. You can find the Press Kit online here.
We've set up shop at Cafepress. You can get Wing Commander themed T-shirts, mugs and mouse pads for $12 US each. The "profits," a dollar from each purchase, go back into the site (hosting, domain name, bulletin board). Direct expenses here to keep the site up total hundreds of dollars each year and we don't expect Cafepress to make a huge dent in that, but every little bit helps and you get a neat item in exchange for keeping the CIC alive.
Applicants must enjoy lengthy debates about pointless minutiae and long walks on the beach, as well as have an extensive knowledge of the vast Wing Commander Universe. Send qualifications by mail to email@example.com -- be forwarned, difficult trivia questions will be asked.
This could be the dawn of a new age for Wing Commander fans. Especially for the CIC's second anniversary, long lost Byydo has completed his Happy Secret Thingie, which he started exactly one year ago today. If we're lucky, we might catch a glimpse of him at the Birthday Party before he returns to seclusion at the peak of Mt. Everest, but this will enter the history books as "The first WC fan project ever in the history of Jesus that was ever completed." So go check it out, sucka!
2000 is the year of the fan made game. However there are many hurdles in place that can trip up those brave enough to attempt a large scale project. In order to help these people gather support for their causes, we've put together a section on the various works in progress. We have around ten major projects listed, and there are several more pending. If you'd like to help out with one, or if you'd like to see what's already available to take advantage of, you can find our Fan Projects section here.
This is one more for the Fan Projects section. Justin Bielawa announced today that he's surreptitiously acquired a copy of the ultra rare novel End Run (I hope his librarian doesn't read the CIC), but that's just the beginning. Before year's end he hopes to have a copy of the most sought after (however never reprinted) Wing Commander novel available online. Can we condone this sort of mischievous behavior? Why not, we've thought of doing it ourselves many times. Good luck!
For some reason, nobody is buying anything from Amazon zShops, so there's a huge surplus of Wing Commander merchandise up for grabs. A few examples: 41 WCII Deluxes, 32 Armada's, 20 movie posters and 13 Prophecy Golds. There's more in our Where to Buy section. The prices are a bit high sometimes, but some of the items are hard to come by (Prophecy Gold has reached $100 on eBay). The quantities listed won't be accurate for long.
That's right, the CIC Mail Bag has returned for its annual reincarnation. This time we've got some one genuine submission plus two e-mails that the CIC received in error. You've got to see them to believe them. Hey, we're not going to leave the Mail Bag hanging this time either.. right.. So send your letters in here! You can find more, including the latest issue of the Mail Bag, in the Mail Bag section here.
The CIC has compiled many of the numerous cheats which allow you to get ahead the easy way in Wing Commander. Find out how you can cheat the Kilrathi of their victory with the press of a key. The CIC welcomes its Cheats section.
The WCESCRP Team is proud to announce that their letter to Origin has been sent to multiple people within the company with over 500 names in support of the release of a Wing Commander engine source code. They've worked hard for six months on this project. We wish them good luck for all our sake. You can find more on the project here.
We've been without a Wing Commander Academy episode server mirror for a while, so a few newbies have come along that don't have any of the series. So for a limited time you can check out one of our older smaller partial mirrors. It's not a complete solution, it's barely a half complete solution, but it'll get you on your way until we find another way to host the 400 odd megs of WCA. You can find the mirrors page here.
What would a birthday be like without something to download? Dan "Vinman" Sumner has extracted and converted a number of mp3s from the in-flight music from Wing Commander 4. Some of the clips are rather short, but it should be, literally and figuratively, "music to your ears." We've split up the twenty or so mp3s into two 2.5 megabyte chunks. You can download them here and here.
Our handy dandy Fan Directory has been updated with numerous new profile and updates. The latest slew includes three new pictures of some of your absolutely most favorite fans. ;) The ICQ List has also been updated.
Hey, we had all these updates, why not one more?
Despite little attention, our SETI@Home group has grown to more than ninety members. Combined, we've put in more than twenty-seven years worth of computer time to searching for extra terrestrial life. SETI has a new version out, 2.04, and our list stats have been updated. You can find more information on this interesting program here.
The alt.games.wing-commander Homepage has been a bit slow of late, and this has not been aided by some major problems at Deja. We're looking at alternatives to keep the posters list updated, and there should be a FAQ update soon. In the mean time Matt Shokoff has taken the time to write an addition to the Jump FAQ. He is the author of the "What is a mis-jump?" section. Keep in mind although the Jump FAQ is a genius document, it is a little bit out of date overall (it doesn't have the copious Confederation Handbook information).
Last, but far from least, we'd like to take some time to thank a great many people who've been critical to the site over the last two years. We're short on time but long on the list of people we need to thank, so they'll go quick in no special order: Matthew O'Neill, Joe Garrity, Johnny Guentzel, K. Downing, Anthony Sommers, Carly Staehlin-Taylor, Kevin Scholl, Beth Wasden, Peter Telep, our Chat Zone administrators and moderators, the many people who've submitted news and maintain active Wing Commander sites, and definitely our visitors. Many sites have also aided us. Thanks to ATFW, BlackLance.org, WC Space Command, Mystery Men, LancersReactor, SLVault, LancerWorld, Lancers HQ, and Lancers Alliance, among many others.