Wing Commander: Making ‘sport out of me

(This is part of my journey playing through Wing Commander. You can follow the entire series on the Nostalgia Lane page.)

san1Between missions I kick back in the Tiger Claw bar, where my prior assumptions about Spirit’s enthicity are shattered.  I guess she’s Japanese, not Native American.  Now I’m just going to shut up about race from here on out, because I’m terrified of getting another one wrong and looking like a pixelated racist.

So with a very wide fixed smile, Ace Acerton sidles out of the bar and into the mission briefing room, where Spirit has magically teleported ahead of him.  Mission #2 doesn’t look to be that difficult — we just have to escort a transport (or ‘sport, as the commander unnecessarily calls them) to a jump point and come back.  Why it can’t jump from where the Tiger Claw is, I do not know.  I’m still not sure about all of the rules in this game universe regarding FTL.

san2There’s the ‘sport itself.  Nice ‘n boxy, like a Volvo.  I use the auto-pilot to hop us between nav points, which saves a lot of boring game time.

san3Pretty view, at least.

san4At both of the nav points Kilrathi fighters are waiting for a little (ahem) catfight.  I’m much more confident as a pilot today and blow through them with little difficulty.  It’s kind of fun, even, although I can’t do anything more fancy than just point my ship at them and try my best to lead shots so that they’ll hit.

Now Wing Commander promoted itself as a 3D game, a term that many early/mid-90s games could get away with even though there’s very little 3D-anything going on.  There’s an illusion of three dimensions at least, but the ships have pre-rendered images for different positionings.  It could be very well that the flight is in 3D through a largely non-detailed space (debris floats by you to suggest speed) but the ships are rotating bitmapped 2D sprites.

Compared to the first mission, this one is a cakewalk.  Two fights, an autopilot jump, and a docking later, and I was done.  Ace Acerton rules and the big cats drool.

san5“Haha… I almost died, you jerk.  You go on making those little cracks, and I’ll find a better use for my heat-seeking missiles.”

san6“Yes SIR!” Ace exclaimed, his eyes wide as he mulled over the possibilities.  A man date?  Could this be?  Pizza, the game on the holo-vid, a couple of brewskis with the boss?  Would they be fated to become best buds?  Would their kids hang out while they barbequeued in the back yard on a warm summer evening?

san7Oh… I guess not.  I can’t say I’m disappointed, as the starter ship is about as flimsy and sucky as they come, but… yeah, I was hoping for more.  I guess this is what’s passing for story in the game so far.


Still, that barbeque would have tasted great.


2 thoughts on “Wing Commander: Making ‘sport out of me

  1. pkudude99 January 25, 2014 / 1:56 am

    Ugh, the Scimitar. Doesn’t hit much harder than the Dart, turns like a pig so you get hit a lot while having a hard time tracking faster craft, and really doesn’t have much more in the way of shields and armor than the light fighter either. Good luck in the hell levels!

    On the bright side you’ll appreciate your heavy fighter so much more when you manage to get into it! Assuming you succeed in your missions and don’t end up going down the story tree where you never actually get out of the Scimitar and lose the war. . . .

  2. Sylow January 27, 2014 / 6:44 am

    On the other hand, the Scimitar has a really beautiful cockpit… 🙂

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