There’s been an influx of at least 100k new players to the game since the Steam sale of Elite Dangerous/Horizons in the Christmas/Holiday period, so a big welcome to all the new players.
If you’re visiting this blog for the first time then you’ll find a selection of news about the games development both past and present from the menu in the top corner of the screen. You can also visit the update page to find the latest additions to to specific pages here.
If you’ve just bought the base game in the sale and you’re thinking about buying the Horizons expansion, then you can read the overview with links to each point release here.
You can find a brief rundown of all the games features, including links to the official patch notes here.
You can read about all the currently known features coming in the Beyond series of free updates, here. (Note: Frontier have said these are Horizons only).
And The Future? Well it’s probably On The List….
Enjoy, and see you in the black!
At 2:14pm on the 20th December 2017 Frontier announced the release of the Type-10 Defender.
“The Thargoid threat is rising. We’re receiving reports of attacks on space stations and devastation across the galaxy. Commanders have been requested to embark on dangerous rescue attempts to shuttle survivors away from the menace.
“There’s no doubt that we’ve got a difficult task ahead. But it’s not over yet… With the urgent need for new weaponry apparent, the Alliance Navy has commissioned Lakon Spaceways to overhaul the Type-9, in response to recent events.
“The result of this collaboration is the new Type-10 Defender, a military behemoth specifically built for combat and absorbing heavy hits. It’s available now from most Alliance-controlled, high-tech systems.
“What are you waiting for, Commander?”
On the 15th December 2017 Frontier had this to say about the early part of 2018….
“Firstly we’ll be continuing the Focused Feedback Forum posts about the features coming to the Beyond Series of updates. We’ve been thrilled with your constructive feedback so far, and wanted to carry on in the same way. In the new year we’ll make new posts relating to the other features in the Beyond series of updates, including Squadrons and more. We’ll also be continuing the livestreams that run alongside these forum posts, where we’ll be joined by Sandro Sammarco to talk about the feedback and explain the initial pitch and concept for the feature in detail.
“Discovery Scanner will continue in to 2018, which is our livestream series that goes behind the scenes of the creation of Elite Dangerous. Previously we looked at the creation of the Thargons with Mark Allen and how the Galaxy was brought to life with the Stellar Forge by Dr Anthony Ross. We have a selection of topics ready to discuss, but I’d also love to know who you would love to hear from! Put your suggestions for future episodes in the thread below… and we’ll see what we can do!
“The Beyond Series of updates begins in Q1 2018 and is free to all owners of Elite Dangerous: Horizons. As with our other content updates in 2.4, we’ll be ramping up to the launch with livestreams, images and video on social media and blog posts here on the forum. We’re looking forward to showing you what’s coming in the first of the Beyond Series of updates, and show you some in-game examples in the lead up to launch.
“In the meantime, please continue enjoying 2.4, as there’s more to come… I’ve heard some nasty explosions coming from the Pleiades… what’s all that about?
“Thanks again, from me and the community team, for another amazing year… here’s to many more.
The 13th December 2017 saw the Thargoids attacking stations and its inhabitants fleeing for their lives. You can see the official Frontier trailer for this below.
At 11.50am on the 6th December 2017 Frontier announced the release of Patch 2.4.09. Or if you are on the PS4, Patch 1.13. You can find all the patch notes here.
“2.4.09 is now live… the downtime is expected to be 15 minutes, or maybe slightly longer for those on PS4.
“On PS4 this update will appear as 1.13. We are looking in to getting these numbers to match in future, in order to avoid confusion. Thanks!
“The update contains a number of bug fixes.
On the 30th November Sandro Sammarco outlined some likely but not confirmed changes to the way Engineering works in the game. These can be seen below and in the Beyond: Core Gameplay Improvements thread. A feedback thread on the forum can be found here.
Issues with the current system
“There are a few of areas that we’d like to improve, in no small way influenced by player feedback”
- Potential for Failure – Whilst it’s cool to have pros and cons in an upgrade system, the statistical level of variety in many blueprints ends up meaning that there is a chance of an upgrade being wrecked entirely, and basically not an upgrade, which undermines the whole process
- Too much Random – There are multiple points where the player is left at the mercy of chance. Whilst some amount of randomness is not a bad thing, and can lead to interesting variety, in our crafting process we have three: the likelihood of correct materials being generated during associated activities, the range of known statistical options, and a final hidden set of statistical options. It can been argued that this is simply too much and makes everything unnecessarily complicated
- Too Long – Elite Dangerous is a game where scale is very important, and very cool. It also means that processes tend to take longer. This includes the engineering loop. The grand scale acts to exacerbate when the results aren’t great and even when they are it can be argued that it’s just too slow a process.
Suggested Improvements to Engineering
“With this in mind, we’re looking to overhaul the system to try to achieve the following goals”
- Guaranteed improvement – We want to make sure that when you upgrade a module the end result is always better. There’s a significant time/resource investment in engineering so we want to make sure that you feel it’s worthwhile before you even begin, so you can make informed decisions on whether to take part or not.
- Increase efficiency – There’s always going to be a significant time cost to upgrading your ship, but we want to look at ways of sometimes mitigating where we think it’s appropriate.
These are the changes that we’re currently investigating.
- We are removing all hidden statistical variables from the upgrade process. Whilst there is still a range of success when you craft, you will be able to see the range before you commit
- One cool thing that secondary hidden statistical pros and cons did was ensure variety. Because we are losing this, we will try to ensure that each module has a set of experimental effects that allow you to tweak your module in a variety of ways, hopefully ensuring that there are a number of different options to aim for
- We are removing any potential for the crafting process to result in an upgrade that is worse than what is currently fitted. Every time you pay for an upgrade, an upgrade is what you will get
- All penalties in blueprints are fixed and only applied once per rank
- You will need to maximize benefits from an upgrade before you can start applying higher rank versions to a module. We still want to reward the process of upgrading modules
- You will be able to craft pinned blueprints at any starport that has outfitting. You won’t be able to gain reputation with the Engineer for doing this, and you won’t be able to fit experimental effects at this point, but it can considerably reduce the upgrading crafting loop
- Experimental effects will no longer have a chance to occur during the upgrade process. Instead, each experimental effect will simply have a materials cost that you can pay to have it fitted to an appropriate module
- This means that there is no way you can lose reputation ranks with an Engineer
- We will institute a materials trader at specific starports. These contacts will allow you to trade (at loss) materials within the same class, allowing you to convert unwanted materials into useful ones
- We will introduce a per material storage cap, probably around the 100 mark, to remove inventory shuffling
- We’ll add quality and quantity indicators for materials in the game world, so you’ll be able to see at a glance how much you have of a material without having to check your inventory
- We’ll add an ignore function for materials (and commodities, incidentally), allowing you to mine and collect more efficiently by preventing collector limpets from picking up ignored items and auto-venting refineries.
“A lot of you will already have engineered items. We will “grandfather” these. This means you can still use them, their statistics and effects won’t be changed.
“However, if you want to apply further upgrades to them, they will have to be converted. Conversion will place them at the top of the previous rank (so a rank 4 upgrade would become maxed rank 3 upgrade) and would change all statistics and effects to represent the new blueprint.”
“In general, we will try to make sure that the new blueprints can max out slightly better than the old system (we want to encourage conversion).”