Benjamin Dunham dug up an old Game Bytes that we previously never gave proper attention to. Game Bytes was an old electronics e-zine from the mid 1990's. Previously Issue #21 included a first look of Wing Commander 3. Issue #19 does the same for Wing Commander Armada, plus it packs in a full review of Privateer Righteous Fire and the ultra rare Origin Audio Volume 1. There are other Origin features as well primarily focusing on Ultima. 1994 was quite a huge year for Origin!
For the first time, players will merge their space combat abilities with strategic responsibility as they personally pilot the ships they've assigned to take on a variety of missions. From quadrant maps and information provided by recon ships, the player plans an expansion of his or her fleet and weighs a ship's ability to succeed against the available resources . At the end of each decision lies a battle....and you lead the wing.
Armada was a bit of a surprise for me in 1994. Wedged between the first Privateers and Wing Commander 3, it was unique by incorporating multiple styles of gameplay and advanced multiplayer modes. Nearly ten years ago its space combat engine was the first to incorporate real three dimensional models and lighting effects. Think Secret Ops was the first Wing Commander game Origin gave away for free over the internet? Nope. Armada's Proving Grounds addon had it beat by four years. The box also had a little card advertising Wing Commander 3 and warning everyone about the system requirements. Everything about Wing Commander Armada screamed "ahead of its time!"