Elite: Dangerous

I got my feet wet on Elite: Dangerous recently. CohhCarnage decided to hop in, and having been interested for a while now, I decided to take the plunge too. I have a few friend who also play it too, so I wasn’t going to be alone.

I knew more or less what to expect out of the game, having watched it on more than one occasion. After alternating between the controls menu and the tutorial, I took the plunge into the world. I got into my sweet, sweet sidewinder and headed towards the nearest navigation beacon, which is where, apparently, one can download the system’s information for civilized systems.

Having played EVE previously, I knew I stood the best chance if I simply looked for guides on how to make money. The tutorials were good enough to teach me how handle my ship, and thus I would only have money standing in the way of experiencing Elite (unlike EVE). So, I did, and I set out to shoot ships for library fines (bounties), taking advantage of the police in the system to do the bulk of the damage.

In about three, four days I managed to upgrade all the way to a Cobra MkIII and still have a million to spare, a part of which I did with a friend in a two-person group shooting up wanted people I’m not entirely too sure how I feel about that. Not only have a climbed relatively quickly thanks to the knowledge of those that came before, I am also not particularly worried about having my ship blown. Sitting at around ~100K cr. for an insurance rebuy, I don’t particularly feel worried about being blown up. In a couple of hours I can safely grind around 500K cr., so the fear of dying isn’t there. Instead, I’m more worried about the loss of progress (since bounties assigned are lost on ship destruction, and so is cartographic information), which somewhat mutes any thrill fights may have.

Of course, I know that I haven’t seen much in terms of the gameplay proper. Exploration and transport missions are in my list of things to do, considering they are pretty much the same as Euro Truck Simulator 2, except in space. I know there is also trading, but short of figuring out trade routes and making long routes – which might be interesting if the faction gameplay could actually be impacted by resource availability, but from what I have been told the simulation is not that good –, and mining (which I will probably avoid), so I should have plenty of things to do for a bit.

The flight model is quite fun, and surprisingly easy to fly with a keyboard and mouse (sadly, my old stick doesn’t work properly). Hours of playing the X3 series helped me fit in rather quickly with the way the ship handles, though there are, of course, differences. Sadly, I am not somebody with extensive experience in flight models (the last time I played a flight simulator, it was Combat Flight Simulator 3, and I often wonder how good that one was. Still, the spaceships don’t just feel like planes in space, and that’s a plus in my book.

Between Elite and ETS2, I should have plenty to play when I simply want to relax for a while. I don’t believe it will grab me like EVE did at the time, but perhaps that is for the best, as I will pace myself and slowly keep up with the evolving story in the game.