Wing 2 director and script writer Stephen Beeman recently shared some interesting facts about the WC2 demo, now almost a quarter century old. The awesome, 'alternative' intro animation is embedded below, or you can download the demo and check it out for yourself. Mr. Beeman also fondly recalled their rudimentary motion capturing efforts and the ensuing hijinks in an old Escapist article.
Yup, this is the WC2 announcement demo from winter CES in January '91. Those character closeups actually cost a huge percentage of our meager disk space, which is why the guard got cut from the final product.
This demo wasn't simply a promotional tool, it was a lab for trying out technologies for the game itself. Some of them worked--this was where I wrote what became WC2's voice system. And some of them didn't--Denis Loubet here was experimenting with sketching backgrounds, scanning them in and then coloring them in DPaint, and while it looks great in its own right, it wasn't clean enough to match the "pixel-perfect" style of the foregrounds.
You can find this demo on YouTube, where you'll get to hear some amazingly cringe-worthy voice acting. That's because we were crunching to get the demo done before Chris and Richard stepped on a plane, so the "actors" were just whoever happened to be around at 2am. The guard is Martin Galway, our audio lead; Prince Thrakath is Philip Brogden, designer/writer/programmer; and the Emperor, with the kind of gravely voice you can only get by sleeping under a desk three hours a night, is me.