EA retains the rights to Wing Commander, and has since they purchased Origin when Privateer was being developed. They haven't done anything with it since '98, though. There were a number of planned MMORPGs planned during this time (this was in the heyday of Ultima Online and Everquest), and three seperate projects that each died seperate deaths (Privateer 3, Privateer Online & Wing Commander Online). Origin assigned Andy Hollis to the second one, only to lose him when the project was cancelled.
The only real remnants from this era are the Privateer 3 design document
, describing a Freelancer-ish multiplayer game that continued the storyline from WCIV, fitting in between that game and Prophecy, and Privateer Online
, a WCP-era MMORPG. The files are sixteen and twenty megs, respectively, and worth every bit of it. Besides actual technical things (like modular ship design, player guilds, ownable space stations, and clan logos), there's all sort of fantastic background drafted up - who knew Origin planned for Privateer Online to have pirate Kilrathi (the "Crimson Fang"
, or individual pirate clans?.
Incidently, there were also plans for Privateer TV series
, which would have tied in both with Wing Commander IV and the second and third Privateer games, creating a multi-media video game series years before such things actually happened.
The story presented by these two documents is fantastic, but also a bit depressing - it illustrates one of the many 'what-ifs' that seem to plague the history of the Wing Commander franchise. Imagine what could have happened if Jerry Pournelle had taken the job to write the Privateer novelization... or Andrew Keith hadn't died, but gone on to write the follow-ups to False Colors.
Edited by - Bob McDob on 8/18/2004 3:44:03 AM
Edited by - Bob McDob on 8/18/2004 3:54:00 AM
Edited by - Bob McDob on 8/18/2004 4:02:20 AM