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A North-South Divide is out now!
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Project Starfighter - The game vs the book
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Caution - this article contains spoilers for Project Starfighter! You may wish to avoid reading this post until you have read the book!
As should be clear by now, Project Starfighter is the novelization of a video game that I created back in 2001. The game is a multi-directional shoot-em-up with an intricate plot. When it came to writing the book, I looked at the plot of the game and took from that what I could. I retained pretty much all of the characters, as well as some of the events, and expanded heavily on all other aspects. For those interested, I've listed below the differences between the game and the novel.
- While Chris' starfighter is a Firefly in both the book and the game, the ship is not sentient in the game and Athena does not feature.
- In the book, WEAPCO stands for Wade-Ellen Asset Protection Corporation. In the game, it is short for Weapons Corporation.
- Phoebe and Ursula appear in the game, though neither of them possess psionic abilities.
- The threat posed by Mal's Immortal League does not feature in the original video game, and neither Mal nor the League are mentioned at any time.
- Lance Skillman and Erik Overlook do not feature in the game.
- Krass Tyler is the only mercenary to appear in the game. Eve, Dar, Clayton, and Lorrie are never seen (and neither is the Wolf Pack).
- The video game opens with Chris fleeing a number of WEAPCO fighters, before choosing to turn and attack them. The opening scene of the book is of Chris standing on the outskirts of the city Tira, watching the remains of the defeated Resistance fleet falling from the sky.
- The Resistance to which Chris and Sid belonged does not feature in the game.
- The WEAPCO stealth fighter that Chris must destroy in the game is absent from the book.
- The Artful Dodger, used as home base by Chris and co. in the book, does not feature in the game. The game does not suggest what Chris and Sid do or where they hide out between missions.
- The Crucible, where Chris, Sid, and Phoebe go to meet Tyler in the DNA Lounge, does not feature in the game.
- There are no drones or war bots present in the game (though this is mostly because the game is a shoot 'em up and drones and bots are land-based).
- Most named vessels (Talons, Mirages, Cyclones, Duke of Wellington, Alchemist's Son) are unnamed in the game.
- Chris Bainfield never rescues any slaves in the book.
- In the book, the warship Chris must battle in Spirit is known as The Grand Vizier, a Star Killer-class frigate. In the game, the frigate is unnamed. Additionally, in the game the frigate is capable of collapsing a star and causing a supernova. In the book, the frigate, while powerful, is not actually capable of any such thing.
- In the game, Chris first encounters Kethlan after assaulting a WEAPCO mining operation. In the book, the encounter follows an attack on a WEAPCO shipyard. Both encounters end with Kethlan fleeing the battle, after Chris bests him in a dogfight.
- In the game, a brainwashed Ursula Lexx is rescued after her starfighter is disabled in combat by Sid Wilson. In the book, she is rescued by Chris, Sid, and Phoebe from an installation known as the Zetaman Facility.
- In the game, Chris destroys a Executive Transport shuttling high level WEAPCO personnel. In the book, Chris captures it and takes Erik Overlook prisoner.
- In the game, there is no mention of WEAPCO actually being a cover for a post-scarcity society known as the Eternal Engine.
That's it for the difference between the game and the book. You can learn more about the novel at the book's dedicated page: