On the 16th of December, Frontier Developments brought out there new title, Elite: Dangerous. Anyone who remembers the old title, or has played it, will know that Elite is a space sim, but now it is so much more. You can do what you want to do when you want to do it. Trader? not a problem, Pirate? why not, Bounty hunter? Sure, for those feeling more adventurous. So, why not jump in your ship and travel across the vast space that is Elite: Dangerous,
I first Started playing Elite when it was in Beta. I remember the first time I got into the game not really knowing what to do, At this time there was limited space (as in where you can travel) but enough to have a lot of fun in. I chose to use my time Space trucking (trading), I would go to one station, pick something up, run it to another and so on and so on.
To most that would sound boring, but this game is far from that, when you launch from the station and head towards the post box exit and entrance, for me, most of the time that was at a high-speed (that worked 70% of the time the rest not to well)you plot your course and jump, then you come out the other side and are welcomed by a nice big sun. At this point I was wide-mouthed and in awe, until I realised I was heading towards it rather quick.
So I’m back on track heading towards the destination, and one of the things you realise is just how small you feel and how lonely space is. You get to your station, get docking permission, line up and get in, until at this point I realise I have no idea how to dock. So after a lot of fiddling about and hoping for the best, I get docked, I’m happy (and alive) I sell my goods, and repeat. I did this a lot and I mean a lot and it was fun. But why was it fun? Well simply, the game makes it feel like you’re in space, you’re the commander of your ship, its your choice, plus the feel and the look of the game just makes it feel right,
After the Beta had ended and Gamma was out (the final beta before the game is released). I got back into the game, this time with the reassurance that what you do in the Gamma will transfer over to the final game. So this time I went onto bounty hunting. Now, I have played a lot of combat flight sims and can pilot well, and this is by far the most fun I have had with shooting people out the sky, I mean space.
So you are there in your little sidewinder with lasers at the ready and you start scanning trying to find a wanted target, ‘Woop’, there’s one, lasers ready and fire away. Sometimes I won, others I didn’t, but that was fine, its not the best ship for fighting but it did it’s job. When I was able to upgrade to my Eagle I did straight away, and that is when the fun started, seeing other players and even NPCs whizzing around in them, you could see the manoeuvrability they possessed, and now it was my turn to join them.
So I decked it out and in my excitement got out of the station, Hardpoints up and my power goes down, here is when I realised how much I enjoy Elite. You must have the right balance, you can buy the biggest and best guns, but you must also have the power for them. So once I managed to work out how to get power back on, I went back and upgraded more and then noticed how much things change and what you can do. So if you’re hauling cargo you have less of a jump distance, same with fuel.
So once I worked it all out, I was ready to hit the town or Nav Beacon to test the ship and it was good so good, that after a while in this ship I managed to gather enough credits to get my next ship, the Cobra mk3, so far this is my favourite ship in the game, it’s so versatile for trading,Combat exploration,mining it’s the Jack of all trades but hasn’t got the cargo of a Lakon or An Asp, it doesn’t manuever like a Viper but it works well and it looks good. I have kept that and started to work on a Viper but I still don’t feel the same way I feel for the Cobra, but that is still early days,
With more and more updates coming into the game, its building quick and there is a lot more in the Development roadmap with the wings update coming up which will focus more on the multiplayer side of things which, I feel the game is lacking in. Yes you see other commanders and can communicate, shoot down, help them, but it doesn’t feel like a multiplayer experience.
Also coming soon is the ability to walk round your ship and planet landing and exploration, as well as Stations that will add a lot more to the game and its depth and for those who follow the story it adds even more to do. As it stands I would recommend the game to anyone who enjoyed such games as Eve, Freelancer and other space sims even combat flight sims. I feel the development of the game is going to add a lot more stuff to do and will only add to what is in my opinion, a great game.
It does have its bugs, for example, you can’t always see Commanders you are grouped with, sometimes the damage is a little high against you when you get hit in the wrong spot, plus the accidental fire against people, if you are already engaged in combat with another ship and some one else flies into your shot, you get punished for a simple mistake which shouldn’t even effect the other ship, it will instantly will chaise you and then kill you, instead of just giving you a fine. So with a bit of tweaking and some more content, this is going to make for one of the best simulation games that has been released for a long time.