(This is part of my journey playing through Wing Commander. You can follow the entire series on the Nostalgia Lane page.)
Between 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.
At 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.
“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?
Oh… 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.