Strike Commander is a combat flight simulator video game designed by Chris Roberts and released by Origin Systems for the PC DOS in 1993. Its 3D graphics-engine used both gouraud shading and texture-mapping on both aircraft-models and terrain, an impressive feat at the time. Significant plot elements were presented through in-game cut-scene animations, a hallmark storytelling vehicle from Chris Robert's previous Wing Commander games. Strike Commander has been called "Privateer on Earth," due to the mercenary role-playing in the game.
The game was mass released in 1994 as part of a Creative Labs bundle pack with Syndicate Plus, Ultima VIII: Pagan and Wing Commander II: Vengeance of the Kilrathi. It was also available in a CD bundle with Wing Commander: Privateer; both games included the core game, the expansion pack and voice pack on a single CD-ROM disc.
The game takes place in a fictional near-future (2011) where significant political changes have occurred in the world. It revolves around a group of crack private military contractor fighter pilots in a group known as the 'Wildcats', based in Turkey who fly F-16 Fighting Falcons.
The events that occur in Strike Commander are triggered by events starting 20 years before the game is set, actually the seeds are sown in the 1980s and onwards, with the collapse of the Soviet Union, the disastrous economic policies of the United States, conflict in the Middle East, the world-wide dependence on petroleum and the resultant rise in nationalism globally.
The player accepts missions from interesting characters and gets paid for doing them which allows the player to buy more weapons. The missions involve flying an F-16 and, in the last missions of the game, the more advanced F-22 and F-23, and accomplishing certain objectives.
Other simulators, such as the F-22 series from Novalogic have been compared with Strike Commander because of their simplified flight model and emphasis on graphic detail, which makes them relatively similar in terms of philosophy.