For twenty two years Origin Systems set the tone for the computer gaming. Ultima, Wing Commander and dozens of others set the gold standard for which the rest of the industry could only hope to catch up. This era has finally come to an end as Electronic Arts readies an announcement that it will shut down the Austin-based Origin studio.
This is not the end for Ultima or Wing Commander. Ultima Online will now be run from California, and development of Ultima X will continue on the west coast. Hopes that another Wing Commander game would be developed in Austin were dashed long ago; the longtime belief that a California-based EA team would develop the next Wing Commander title may, ironically, be bolstered by this news.
What it is, however, is a tremendous moral loss on all fronts. Origin Systems will always be the ultimate symbol of gaming's greatest days, and its dissolution to a faceless corporate entity is, sadly, equally symbolic of the world today. Origin entertained, challenged and inspired our generation in a way that seems impossible today. Though the individuals who developed our games long ago moved on to greater careers, the very existence of the company itself continued to stand for something special; something amazing.
The CIC will continue to dedicate itself to Origin's legacy - we will redouble our efforts to archive anything and everything related to the company. We will strike to make the world remember what Origin meant. I wanted to end with a quote - something pithy and literary to express the meaning of such an ending. I came up with only this:
With your carrier destroyed, you drift endlessly through the void.
Watch the French Resistance Achieve Victory Against the Kilrathi
DocteurJ is back with another extensive stream and commentary on the Wing Commander series. In this episode, he's flying the final mission of Wing Commander 3 to cap off his summertime playthrough of the game. As you're already aware if you skipped ahead and pressed play, DocteurJ is helping make sure Wing Commander fandom lives on in the French gaming community. (2018-11-16)
Japanese Advertisements Highlight Intriguing Ports
Here's a couple of really cool Japanese advertisements that LOAF recently came across. As is common in the country, they're chock full of text and liberal with the exclamation marks. The first is a small embedded ad for the Mega CD port of Wing Commander 1, which was the only version that got full speech as it was transferred to the disc-based format. (2018-11-15)
Art Portfolio One Step Closer to Production
Mike Winterbauer reports that he's finished putting together the dedication page in his Wing Commander Art Portfolio with all of the project backers who pledged at the appropriate $25+ Book threshold. For a limited time between now and when the material soon goes to print, he's put out a call for anyone who missed the end of the campaign and wanted to upgrade to be included. If so, send Mike a message. (2018-11-14)
Flying Pancake Complements Two-for-One Salthi
DefianceIndustries has moved over to Kilrathi ships as he fills out his WC1 fleet, and the first two fliers are the Dralthi and Salthi. We've seen a hundred Dralthi variants over the years, and they just never get old. This one is as gorgeous as we've ever seen, so it's just a treat. (2018-11-13)
Check Out the Original Secret Missions
Here's a really cool find that LOAF recently came across. From the outside, it might look like a nifty WC1 Special Edition autographed by Chris Roberts, but it's what's inside that's pretty rare! The set was originally purchased directly from Origin in 1990, and the included Secret Missions were special mailed in a WC branded envelope instead of the standard slim black box. (2018-11-12)