We have some bad news to report: due to apparent licensing issues, all three Wing Commander titles will be removed from GameTap on December 11th. This announcement affects more than just Electronic Arts' GameTap catalog -- over 70 titles will be removed from the service.
GameTap surprised and delighted fans a mere nine months ago by releasing the original Wing Commander emulated to run on a modern computer. It was followed by releases of Wing Commander IV and Wing Commander II - and Privateer was promised for the future. For a brief, shining moment young and old fans alike could easily (and legally) enjoy the classic games in all their glory.
It is possible that EA and GameTap will negotiate a new licensing deal and that the games will return in the future - or that EA plans to launch a similar service (on the other hand, this may simply be the cost of the service's planned international expansion). Until that time, I will certainly be canceling my Gold account ... and I would urge all other Wing Commander fans to do the same.
The interesting thing in this issue is an article about new ways to market Origin games... and they're all part of a campaign to sell the Origin FX screensaver. What's funny is that they're all things which are very common today - things like online demos and elaborate store displays. Is anyone familiar with the Origin FX 'teaser' mentioned here? It can't be the demo included with Strike Commander, since that hasn't shipped yet...
A very special thanks to Joe Garrity of the Origin Museum for making this resource available and to Electronic Arts for sending them to him in the first place!
- Off to Market has three notes about new ways Origin games are being promoted. The first is featuring them in other company's catalogs: "ORIGIN FX and Ultima Underworld II will be featured in a related products catalog to be included in the next 300,000 MediaVision products to ship. The new catalog will be packaged with their ProAudio Spectrum 16 sound cards, CD-ROM Upgrade kits and video cards." The second is online demos: "He adds that the ORIGIN FX 'teaser' version is working wonders online. About 3 out of 5 people who downloaded it say they went out and bought the full version, even though some reported already having After Dark." and the third is a new kind of store display: "'Creating worlds is hard work. Playing in them is just plain fun. New from ORIGIN.' That's the theme of a new point-of-purchase display and promotion that's being offered to the retail channel. The countertop display includes 4-ORIGIN FX, 2-Underworld II and 2-Wing Commander promotional editions. Purchasers of the display recieve a free promotional copy of ORIGIN FX."
Point of Origin
Vol. III, No. 32 - February 12, 1993
Off to Market
Here Today, On Tomorrow
Comings and Goings
Dear Poitn Man
In the Library
Flash: M.I.S. Fully Staffed and Ready