Raph Koster has posted additional snippets from his upcoming book on video game development, Postmortems. This time he provides a glimpse into the incredibly ambitious economy that Privateer Online was supposed to include. This includes complex guild mechanics, a virtual stock market and an offline web-based interface for certain tasks. Pretty wild for the time! The 700 page paperback publication is still slated for June 26, but ebook editions are starting to trickle out. The B&N Nook version is already available at just $20.
Another feature of Privateer Online that arose out of its heavily commerce-oriented gameplay was its in-game stock market... which may not have worked the way you'd expect. Long before Farmville, MMOs were exploring asynchronous play. There were player vendors in UO, of course, but in Privateer Online we planned to extend that to a fully player-driven economy. I mean, we were trying to support mercantile gameplay via the web into an MMO server (and back out) in 1999... no wonder the game got cancelled, who knows what EA thought of that (they cancelled it in favor of Earth & Beyond).
Wing 4 Trailer Plan Gets the Attention of Billboard Magazine
Billboard is a trade magazine for the entertainment industry which reports on the production and marketing side of films, television shows, music and others. In 1996, that included the burgeoning CD-ROM industry. We've found an interesting story in the February 3rd, 1996 issue about the marketing plans for Wing Commander IV... (2018-10-20)
PC Games Reviews Wing Commander
German gaming magazine PC Games began covering the Wing Commander series when it launched in 1992, publishing a variety of articles and reviews. Today we've collected the latter, their detailed reviews of nine games running from Origin FX in 1993 to Wing Commander Prophecy in 1998. (2018-10-19)
DefianceIndustries Breeds Raptors
DefianceIndustries is still doing what he does best: creating and updating high quality models of clasic Wing Commander ship designs! Today he shares his Vindicator and Raptor...I started looking over some of my older stuff and found a few issues with my original Vindicator model. (2018-10-18)
Wing Commander Civics 101
The Templin Institute is a YouTube presentation with a neat gimmick: they offer documentaries about different fictional realities! This week they've premiered a new show called 'Audio Log' that presents the history of a fictional institution with a dramatic audio recording. And for the pilot episode they've chosen to talk about Wing Commander's Terran Confederation! (2018-10-17)
Get Ready, Get Net
The American release of Wing Commander IV for the Playstation included two manuals: a 'Battle Book' which includes detailed controls for the flying portion of the game and a 'New Officer's Handbook' which shows new players how to navigate the game and lists specifications for several flyable ships (the European releases of the game had a single combined manual.) For today's update, we're looking at the cover of the latter booklet which is a little more interesting than it might seem!The single most fascinating aspect of the New Officer's Handbook is that it introduces a small amount of lore in the form of the 'login text' which shows a new officer (not Blair as they are apparently an Ensign) logging into a Terran Confederation computer system. (2018-10-16)