While I appreciate that Freebooted has historically been an EVE Online blog exclusively, my current love affair with Elite: Dangerous has left me considering expanding my content. After all, five years dedicated to a single game does seem a little… obsessive.

Of course, I’ll continue to discuss EVE Online – I still feel like I’ve got plenty to say – but I don’t think there’s any harm in looking at new entrants to the increasingly busy sci-fi gaming niche from time to time.

Besides, as I discussed in my previous post, Elite: Dangerous seems capable of ticking boxes that EVE has always neglected as a game which can deliver content and stories on a more personal level. Certainly, the broader slate for fiction E:D offers has already spawned a number of novels. The game design also lends itself more readily to some narrative structure than EVE, which is something I hope to see.

For me, the real hook in Elite: Dangerous is what Frontier Developments CEO David Braben describes as the ‘moment-to-moment’ gameplay. There’s an immediacy and a connectivity to E:D’s world which really breathes life into the game experience, creating unexpected events with exciting, satisfying and/or hilarious outcomes.

Already, I’ve had several ‘moments’ which have given me stories to tell. I’m not proud of all of them, but the game environment certainly seems like a fertile bed for all manner of unscripted occurrences and those arising from seeds planted by the designers.

For clarity, I’ve mostly been playing in ‘private group’ mode, so all of my interactions thus far have been with NPCs (friends currently seem to be invisible/in a different instance), but to my rookie eyes, I wouldn’t be able to tell player from AI anyway.

Here’s a few of my more memorable (or shameful) moments:


ALEA_IACTA_EST · 11/11/2014 at 19:14

I'm curious about your setup. Are you using an oculus dev kit? What about a joystick? I've heard that both of these things massively improve the experience. Also thanks for taking the time to write up your experiences, I always enjoy your stuff.

Mat Westhorpe · 12/11/2014 at 21:48

Hah, I iwish! I'm running Elite: Dangerous on a recently purchased budget gaming PC (a Chillblast Fusion Spartacus). I would have taken part in the the beta much earlier, but my HP Envy 17 notebook had become too unstable to run it and I had to wait until I could upgrade despite having beta access for some months. Very frustrating.

I certainly don't have access to anything as fancy as an Oculus Rift and although I'm considering investing in a joystick, I've been enjoying Elite just fine with mouse/keyboard control (although I'm sure I'd get humbled in PvP).

Thanks for reading.

ALEA_IACTA_EST · 13/11/2014 at 20:40

I'm waiting until release to pick it up, but your write ups helped sell me. Glad to hear it is still immersive and fun without the oculus. For a joystick I'm planning on getting the 'Thrustmaster T-Flight Hotas X Flight Stick' which is well rated and only $45 on Amazon. So you might check it out if you're looking for something less ridiculous(in my opinion).

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