In the Distant Future, Mankind is Locked in a Deadly War... Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Update ID

Exactly fifteen years ago today, Origin Systems, Inc. made history when they shipped the original Wing Commander. On September 26, 1990, after ten months of development, the world's first interactive movie shipped to software stores and changed the world. At 5:00 PM CST on that day, during the release party outside Origin's old Wild Basin office, Richard Garriott announced that the game's creator, Chris Roberts, had been hired as Director of New Technologies.

In the fifteen years since that day, the Wing Commander saga set the high bar for quality in computer and video gaming. If your favorite video game today goes out of its way to make you feel like a participant instead of an observer, it is because of what Wing Commander did to gaming. If your computer plays sounds on a Soundblaster, reads games from a CD-ROM drive or makes use of 3d accelerated graphics, it is because Wing Commander pushed the envelope and made these things the standard.

Wing Commander is as alive today as it was in 1990 because of the fandom it inspired. It has been over two years since the last Wing Commander game, Wing Commander Prophecy for the GameBoy Advance, was released.

It has been just over seven years since the last completely original title was released. Despite these daunting numbers, this website receives more and more visitors every single month. Despite this, people play new Wing Commander fan games and read new Wing Commander fiction and argue tooth and nail about new Wing Commander ideas every single day - all because of our community. There are Wingnuts today who weren't even born when the original game first reached store shelves. Take a moment to reflect on this - even if you are nothing else, every one of you should be incredibly proud of this accomplishment.

The importance of the original Wing Commander can not ever be understated. For the industry it was a new way to make computer games, one that continues fully unabated today. For the fans - us fans - it was the most exciting adventure we ever experienced. Never before did a computer game offer such emotion and such interaction.

We have a lifetime of war stories from that simple computer game: we struggled to save the Ralari, we were thrilled to fly the new Rapiers and any wingnut worth his salt will chew your ear off about the time he lost both his guns and both his VDUs and still made it home in that Hornet, given the opportunity.

We loved the characters -- we followed Colonel Halcyon to hell, laughed at Maniac Marshall, had a not-so-subtle crush on Angel Devereaux and we hated the furballs for what they did to Iceman's family.

We pored over the blueprints and Joan's. We memorized Claw Marks. Show a Wing Commander fan a Scimitar or a Dralthi today, and he'll have true feelings about what flying them and fighting them were like.

Wing Commander was the greatest game ever made; it is entirely appropriate that to this day it has the greatest group of fans ever assembled. I'll see you all for the thirtieth anniversary.

Destroying the remains of the Kilrathi naval power in the sector, the Tiger’s Claw closes in for the kill, and the last Kilrathi planet in the sector falls!

Recent Updates


Denis Loubet Remembers Aaron Allston

Former Origin artist Denis Loubet has completed another portrait. This one is a tribute to his friend and fellow Wing Commander veteran Aaron Allston. Sadly, Mr. (2019-01-19)

Chinese Secret Missions Now a Little Less Secret

Christian Klein posted these neat pics of the Secret Missions made for China/Taiwan. We've previously posted about a number of Chinese ports in the past, including WC1, SM2, WC2 and the Special Operations, but it's possible that I've not seen the SM1 before. It's nice to close the loop on that! (2019-01-18)

Wing Commander Jazz Album Discs Ready to Ship!

There's good news on George Oldziey's live Wing Commander jazz album. The production copies have finally come back, so George is ready to ship discs out to project backers. Very coolalbum art was created by SabreAce, which you can see below. (2019-01-17)

The Story of Raylight Games - Straight from the Source!

Massimiliano Di Monda, the co-founder and CEO of Raylight Games, has posted a neat article on the history of Wing Commander Prophecy for the Gameboy Advance. The company was founded in 2000, and the GBA port of WCP was a big deal in their initial portfolio. Thanks to their success in these early days, they are still active today and just recently announced several Nintendo Switch titles, among other products. (2019-01-16)

Academy Script: Walking Wounded

As promised, a second Wing Commander Academy episode is now available! Today's script covers episode nine, "Walking Wounded." The episode starts with a cut scene that was intended to better establish Maniac's character for the episode, a scene taken from Wing Commander IV where he uncomfortably hits on a new Tiger's Claw bridge officer. (2019-01-15)

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