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Happy Hour: March 31st, 2017 Summary Written Friday 31st of March 2017 at 11:55am by CanadianSyrup

As per usual, anything said during the show is subject to change by CIG and may not always be accurate at the time of posting. Also any mistakes you see that I may have missed, please let me know so I can correct them. Enjoy the show!

TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)

  • Today's show featured Ben playing Wing Commander: Privateer and giving the history of the game and other pieces of lore info. There's no Star Citizen news so please read the full summary if this history is interesting to you


  • The show is live! I think? Oh they're starting up Privateer and playing the intro for the game first.

  • I hadn't seen the Privateer intro before which was pretty neat. Jared and Ben will be hosting Happy Hour today with Ben taking us through Wing Commander: Privateer! A game that has had quite an influence on Star Citizen.

  • Ben compared how Star Wars focused on Luke Skywalker character and his journey to how Privateer focused on the Han Solo character type.

  • Privateer used technology from Strike Commander, a "Star Citizen" of its time and was the result of branching off from that game and making a vast world to explore. Privateer takes place after Wing Commander 2 in terms of setting. Wing Commander 3 came after Privateer, but also took place at the same time as the events in Privateer.

  • Ben is now showing some early concept images of Privateer.


  • The latest picture is an image of the original Privateer box.
  • The game shipped on 6 floppy disks with an additional speech pack

  • When Privateer came out, Ben didn't have a computer that could play it, but kept the manual with him for it till it literally fell apart and figured out the prices of ships and etc.


  • This is what people thought PDA's would look like in the future. Ben is just creating his character.


  • The first ship you start with, given to you by your grandfather.


  • The cockpits were 3D which at the time was revolutionary. There's four ships in Privateer and they each have their own strengths and weaknesses.
  • Starting out Ben doesn't have much he can do because his ship is pretty bare. No Jump Drive or very good components. You had to earn your upgrades unlike the previous Wing Commander games.

  • Erin Roberts was responsible for porting Privateer to CD-Rom when it became a thing.


  • A lot of what you see is in Privateer was expanding for Star Citizen. The screens went from being interactive images to full 3D environments that we see today.
  • If you wanted you could play Privateer without ever having to shoot a bullet as you could be a dedicated hauler and play the market as you pleased. The game also had some procedural mission elements where there was a large file of different company names and mission types and locations that would randomize based on certain attributes.


  • For Ben one of his memorable experiences was earning enough money to buy his first Jump Drive and go further than he could before. He wants players to get that same feeling with Star Citizen.


  • You can join guilds who will give you certain missions and deals as Ben displays here, but there's an entrance fee.


  • Displayed here is the Mercenary Guild that Ben says gives the coolest missions for people who want to feel like a badass. Also on the side is a rotating ad poster.
  • In 94 NBC asked for a copy of Privateer to have on their show "Viper" which Ben says was basically a knockoff of Knightrider.


  • Artist, Ryan Smith is the man in the image here who's rise to fame came from the spaceship model you see in the background, it wasn't in Privateer however. Unfortunately he passed away a couple years ago.
  • The woman working on her nails at the desk was his sister.


  • Orion is the heavily armored ship, think of it like the Terrapin. The Galaxy is like the Caterpillar/Cutlass. The Centurion is the total badass military ship that everyone wants.


  • The area where Ben can upgrade the components on his ship.
  • What Origin did a good job of Ben said was introducing guns slowly to get people familiar with them and understand their strengths and weaknesses and people got into figuring out the best cost for performance.


  • You can get missile launchers and outfit the different slots on your ship like Star Citizen does and have to buy the ammo and ammo etc.


  • Engines, powerplants, afterburners, armour, many different parts to upgrade


  • Here's the place where you buy maps to be able to travel to different places you haven't before as well as buy sensors to tell between what is what and give you more information about things around you.


  • Can't have Wing Commander without a bar for your secret missions and other events.


  • This was a fifth ship that never made it into the game. It was meant to get from place to place quickly. Inspiration for the racing ships in Star Citizen and the Herald.


  • Ben is outfitting a Centurion so he can fly a mission before the show ends.


  • Ben plotted out a course using the map shown below and took off to a base! However he died literally 5 seconds later.


  • Ben as Landed in New Detroit. A blade runner planet.


  • That's all for Privateer, but Ben's talking about what happened after Privateer. After Privateer there was a game called Super Wing Commander that updated the original games graphics and reused some assets from Privateer. Privateer was destined to have a sequel and actually made into chapters like Squadron 42. Unfortunately It never came to fruition. However a game was made that was similar to Privateer and it was called Privateer: The Darkening and eventually called Privateer 2 which is a great game, but not set in the same universe as Privateer 1.
  • There were concepts for Privateer Online and Ben quickly went through them, but I couldn't keep up. There was a Privateer 3, but unfortunately it too was cancelled and it was said to have been a great game.


  • This is the origin systems screensaver since back then screensavers were the rage.
  • Privateer was the only Wing Commander game that didn't get ported at all. Never to console, SNES, or anything except updated to CD-ROM from floppy.

  • If you want to play Privateer it's available on GOG and EA's Origin client.

  • Not Privateer related, but Ben thanks the Frankfurt office for helping him get a copy of the German special edition of Wing Commander IV with a special dogtag inside.


  • In Ben's spare time he has been digitizing tapes and scans of Wing Commander concepts and footage in order to preserve the history of Wing Commander.
  • Ben is very thankful he has the opportunity to do a show like this and Jared reminds everyone Happy Hour rotates between different formats such as Game Dev, Interviews, RSI museum and more. If there's something you'd like to see, let them know on Spectrum.

  • They're showing off an easter egg which is the end credits done ingame and voiced as a back and forth conversation about who worked on what.



Director of Transcripts

A polite Canadian who takes pride in making other peoples day brighter. He enjoys waffles with Maplesyrup, making delicious puns and striving for perfection in screaming at the T.V. during hockey games.