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Wing Commander: Heroes

Going title: Heroes of the Cancri Crystal Campaign

Summary

A Wing Commander game with a few new features:

  • You control several pilots' storylines in the same game. If two or more of them are flying at the same time, you can switch between them while an AI takes over any pilots you are not controlling.
  • The campaign is nonlinear. You fight until all of the Kilrathi Heroes have been killed and their major capships destroyed.
  • While controlling the Admiral, you can do some strategy a la WC Armada.
  • The map is slightly randomized for each game.

Develop WC Battlefront first since it shares much of the backend.

Introduction

(Not sure if the introduction voice should be the stereotypical Majel Barrett female voice or a stereotypical military male briefing voice. Leaning toward the latter.)

The scene begins with a view of the systems in simulated 3-D realspace. As the voice speaks, lines are placed between the stars to reference the jump interconnections, the stars are transformed into points, the background stars are faded out and the result is translated into a 2-D map while and replaced by a blueprint-looking grid. The stars and their connections are different in every game.}

Voiceover: “The Cancri Crystal is a cluster of star systems in the Cancri Sector whose jump connections take on the appearance of a crystal shape when transposed onto a two-dimensional map. The structure has one known entrance on either end, a small number of habitable worlds,” (TODO: finish the script)

Items

Technology

The campaign takes place between WC1 and WC2. Suitable tech would be available to both sides.

Confed

As one of the bases is a training base, you would begin the game with a lot of obsolete tech.

Kilrathi

The Hriss would be the Kilrathi's top ship.

Locations

The only locations repeated in each game are:

  • Entrance and Exit - There is one star system at either “end” of the lattice. Each has one jump point through which reinforcements can be sent.
  • The Ladder – There are two direct and distinct paths of equal length between the Entrance and Exit. No shorter path between the Entrance and Exit may be generated.
  • Singapore Station - The station defending the Terran Entrance. The Admiral begins here.
  • Marigold Station - A space station used to train pilots. This is never more than two jumps from Singapore Station. Mozart begins here. Ace begins here if you saved him. This carrier will launch large wings of poor-AI pilots. Marigold begins with lots of training aircraft that you will want to replace as soon as possible.
  • Major Carrier - Fireball begins here. This carrier will launch large wings of moderate-AI pilots. This carrier begins in one of the two Ladder paths.
  • Minor Carrier - Deleter begins here. This carrier will launch small wings of moderate-AI pilots. This carrier begins in the opposite Ladder path of the Major Carrier.

Player Stats

The game may have RPG-style leveling-up system that quietly breaks the laws of physics in your favour. Gaining experience in a ship can conceivably effect:

  • Hit shape size
  • Turning rate
  • Acceleration
  • Energy recharge rate
  • Saving throws against getting blown up

Characters

Terran Heroes

If you lose a carrier and there is nowhere to land, you lose any Hero based on that carrier. They may be rescued on the immediate next turn by any jump-capable ship, or they may surrender to the Kilrathi if the Kilrathi get there first.

Mozart

The general-use pilot is the most like WC1 Blair in character and mannerisms. He is young and inexperienced but the best pure talent. He begins with no experience in any fighter but can gain top experience in any craft. He begins at Marigold Station in a Hornet.

Fireball

Fireball is an angry woman of short stature, around 5'2”, who has a grudge against the universe. She is a very talented dogfighter but has a habit of losing co-pilots and risks being sidelined if she loses more. She has curly blond or light brown hair. She has top experience with a Raptor.

Deleter

An experienced female bomber pilot in her late 20s. Deleter has straight blond hair and a beautiful face. She may be Icelandic. She flies a Broadsword.

The Admiral

Begins on Singapore. Has his own private Hornet with slightly upped shields and armour, a half-damage Ion Cannon replacing the HS missile, and purple trim paint. The Admiral is the only playable character who can perform strategy.

Ace

Mozart's flight commander who will be lost in the first mission unless you rescue him against impossible odds. If you do manage to save him, he begins at Marigold Station. His experience gains are limited because he already has a great deal of experience.

Reinforcements?

It may be possible to summon additional Hero pilots as reinforcements. These might include Knight, Spirit, and Angel from WC1. It might also be possible to bring in a Privateer as a Hero pilot; maybe the Hooded Hawk captain from Privateer.

Also, the game may track each individual AI pilot. If any of them gains 5 kills, they are an Ace by WWII standards and may be considered a new controllable Hero.

Terran NPCs

We may need at least 20 distinct Terran characters.

Admiral's Assistant

He may be the Wing Commander of Singapore Station.

If you lose all of your Heroes, you will only see the Admiral's assistant making moves on the strategic map until the game ends.

Mozart's acquaintances

Several of Mozart's copilots can be written into the script.

Fireball's crewmates and CO

Deleter's crewmates and CO

Backup Carrier Commander

If you can talk a backup carrier into arriving, it has a commander.

Kilrathi Heroes

The Kilrathi have about a dozen heroes who act as aces and capship commanders. Some of the capship commanders have their own “Prepare! My! Ship!” fighters like your Admiral. Their presence will greatly increase Kilrathi effectiveness in simulated battles where there is no player present. They may still be overwhelmed by large numbers of pure AI.

The heroes have differences from normal pilots:

  • Different AI.
  • Different sayings and voice actors.
  • Different responses if you capture them alive.
  • Some have a unique texture.
  • Some have a unique ship.

High Commander

Subcommander

Trope aces

Several pure-starfighters who follow tropes:

  • The Bloodthirsty Guy who wants to kill all humans.
  • The Elitist Guy who does not hate humans as much as the other guy, but still looks down on them as inferior.
  • The Honorable Guy who has some grudging respect for humans.
  • The Coward/Tactician who will run from an unfair fight.
  • The Sadist who enjoys killing but will run away if a situation looks bad.

Baron Sister plotline

Six Kilrathi heroes may be covered by a single subplot.

  • The Baron – A wealthy and powerful Kilrathi and a member of the royal family. He may be the same person as the High Commander.
  • Hrr'Sra and the Four Guardians – Hrr'Sra is a Priestess of Sivar who has enough influence over her brother/cousin, The Baron, that he allows her to pilot a warship. This is VERY unusual; in Kilrathi culture, only males are allowed to fight. He also assigned four Imperial Guards (Drakhai) to protect her and to take credit for any damage she does. The resulting wing of aces will be the most destructive force in the sector. Hrr'Sra and two of the aces fly Hriss. The two other aces fly Gratha.

If you kill Hrr'Sra, the other four will go into suicidally aggressive mode against whoever scored the kill. They expect to be killed by The Baron for their failure, but he will blame Hrr'Sra for it. Any who survive the fight will be split up to lead wings of normal AI.

It may be possible for a female pilot to taunt Hrr'Sra into a one-on-one fight. If she kills your Hero, it may convince The Baron that she enjoys Sivar's protection and is good enough to lead a wing on her own. This will split up the Drakhai so you can defeat them one at a time.

If you defeat the Baron before defeating Hrr'Sra, what happens? She may be headstrong enough to try to take over his position. Another Kilrathi Hero may kill her for her impudence unless you have killed him first.

Strategy

The strategic game is turn based. You decide where capships are to move to. Their AI decides how to maneuver and what patrols to run.

Combat occurs when ships intersect within a sector. If there are no player-controlled Heroes in the area, the combat is simulated by algorithm.

Your orders are delivered by small courier. If the courier does not arrive, the ships do not follow your orders.

Your carriers have limited amounts of resources.

  • Armaments - Needed to arm fighters.
  • Fuel - Needed to launch patrols.
  • Pilots - Lost as you lose pilots.
  • Ships - Lost as ships are damaged and destroyed.

A key component of your strategy will be ensuring the delivery of replacement arms, ships, fuel, and pilots. The Kilrathi face the same troubles but have a steadier supply of resources.

Material sources

  • Confed - You can call in an order for materials, but it damages the ability of Confed to fight elsewhere. You may later be told that your sector is too low priority to be served.
  • Colonies - Taxing the colonies will provide stuff but reduce their ability to provide anything more in the future. The Colonies can best provide raw materials and very poor pilots.

Delivery methods

  • Capship - Carries a lot of stuff and is well protected but burns a lot of fuel to get there.
  • Heavy Transport - Carries a lot of stuff but is slow and easy pickings for an enemy fighter.
  • Corvette - Carries a small amount of stuff.
  • Privateer - A slower and weaker corvette. They die a lot so the sector will likely run out of privateers by the end of the mission.
  • Bomber - Has a very small capacity and a limited number of jumps.

Additional Storylines

Evacuation

If the game engine supports planetary combat, you may have colonies in the war zone. Ordering an evacuation will allow a fraction of their production to be added to that of the off-map Colonies.

If a colony is destroyed without an evacuation order, your Admiral may be dismissed for allowing it to happen.

Simulation notes

Talent comparison for simulating fights:

  • Five Points
  • + Training (to max of 10)
  • + Kill count (Kilrathi Heroes have a high number)

In this system, pilots would be scored at:

  • 5 - Untrained Pilot
  • 15 - Fully Trained Pilot
  • 20 - Ace with 5 kills
  • 45 - Ace with 30 kills

The average Kilrathi pilot would be a 5-10. This satisfies the WCverse generalities that a single Ace can kill two average Kilrathi, and two well-trained Confeds can kill three average Kilrathi pilots, assuming their ships are equal. However, the Kilrathi will tend to have better ships.

wingcommanderheroes.txt · Last modified: 2014/02/22 01:41 by deltatango