Origin Systems is famous for its Wing Commander and Privateer space sims, but Wing Commander wasn’t the company’s first excursion to the stars by any means. Space Rogue combined RPG, trading, and space sim elements to create a rich universe for its central narrative to play out in. Designed by Paul Neurath, Space Rogue was released in 1989, during the brief period when Origin decided to use photos, rather than illustrations, for its cover art.
Photographs from space
Courtesy of Joe Garrity at the Origin Museum, here you can see match prints (full colour laminate printing proofs) for several different box cover designs, as well as an ad layout and a couple of the original photos. Joe describes this lot as “More weird stuff that shuffled to the top of the archives…these are ‘match prints’ for the cover of Space Rogue, along with a few photo prints from the cover session. These show various box background designs. They’re not in the best of shape, but the fact that they even still exist is pretty cool.”
Incidentally, if you’re interested in seeing Space Rogue, often regarded as a precursor to Wing Commander, re-released, there’s a voting page up at GOG.