elite dangerous

Official Site: Elite Dangerous
Studio: Frontier Developments
Launch Date: December 16, 2014
Genre: Sci-fi Space Sandbox
Business Model: B2P (DLC)
Platform: PC

Elite: Dangerous has passed 2.75 million sales

Good news for the Elite: Dangerous crew; according to the Frontier Developments Twitter account, Elite: Dangerous and the Horizons expansion have passed a grand total of 2.75 million sales. The phrasing is slightly ambiguous, as it could mean the combined total of each one’s individual sales is 2.75 million or that the game has sold 2.75 million copies altogether. Both are impressive, certainly, especially as the last sales data we had was from January 2016 when the base game had sold 1.4 million copies.

If you’re part of the crowd and plan to be out for PAX West in the near future, you can take part in the studio’s planned Frontier meet-up for fans and community on August 31st, 2017. The event is first-come-first-served and does have limited capacity, so you should make your plans soon, but it’s there if you want to go. The rest of us can sit back and relish the days when 825,000 sales was a major milestone.

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Tencent buys up a chunk of TERA’s Bluehole Studio

Tencent is sprinkling more money around: Yicai Global and Gamasutra are reporting that the Chinese conglom has invested money into South Korea’s Bluehole Studio. It’s not currently clear how much money; according to Yicai, Bluehole refused a total buyout offer.

We’re presuming that Tencent’s interest is chiefly in Bluehole’s development and publishing of the increasingly popular and obnoxiously named Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds.

But to MMORPG players, Bluehole is probably best known as the Korean studio behind TERA, as well as Devilian (in the East), Project W, and a number of mobile games, including one based on TERA.

Most recently, Tencent was spotted pouring $23M into Elite Dangerous dev house Frontier Development to acquire 9% of the studio.

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Elite: Dangerous is retiring its 32-bit client

Despite the name, Elite: Dangerous has never required a particularly elite home computer to run. But it will be getting just a little bit more elite with its next patch, as 2.4 is removing support for the game’s 32-bit client. Players who wish to play the 2.4 test version will need a 64-bit version of the game; according to the official announcement, this change will affect a tiny portion of the game’s overall userbase.

Those players who will be affected will also be directly contacted by the team to make sure that everyone is aware of the change and what can be done to prepare. Odds are low this will affect you, but it’s still worth noting and being ready for. On the bright side, this marks another milestone towards ensuring that the 2038 problem doesn’t hit the world with a fury of a thousand suns, so we can commend Frontier Developments for looking ahead.

Source: Official Site; thanks to CapnLan for the tip!

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One Shots: Sacred space

Anyone a little excited about Guild Wars 2 these days? Probably not, but on the off-chance that there’s a glimmer of hype and hope alive, here’s a reminder that there’s some stuff that was put out for the game and other stuff that’s coming for the game. Deserty-stuff.

“I don’t want to spoil much about the latest Guild Wars 2 episode, so here is just a shot from inside of Divinity’s Reach palace temple, where it begins!” Miol submitted.

I wish I could un-spoil myself from that screenshot, because now I know the game’s design plans for the next seven years, all from the subtle clues that are contained in those stained glass windows. How I wish I could erase that knowledge and experience it as a wide-eyed child would!

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Elite Dangerous: A ground-pounding newbie’s perspective

Earlier this summer I wrote that Elite Dangerous community events were something the MMO community should watch. Watch. I never said play, and I never ended up pushing the “purchase” button when I saw it on sale. I’m not really a flight sim person. Heck, I’ve even mentioned several times that I prefer kart-racers to realistic racing games.

However, I recently snagged a review key for Elite Dangerous to try it out on the PlayStation 4. I even streamed my first experiences with the game. It was a rocky session to say the least, but I decided to stick with it for a few more hours after getting some support from viewers. I really wanted to be able to recommend the game as something to pick up, but honestly, I’m still in the “watch” category.

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Make My MMO: Valiance Online’s founder alpha has begun (July 29, 2017)

This week in MMO crowdfunding, Valiance Online took everyone by surprise by announcing the launch of its investor alpha on PC for Friday, though it didn’t actually launch until today thanks to some unforeseen tech issues. “If you donated to our old website campaign or Kickstarter, you might not be in Alpha today,” Silverhelm tweeted. “We’ll be working over the weekend to get you in!” Folks who donate right now through the official site should also have immediate access.

Over in the newly launched Albion Online, developers calmly responded to criticism of its large-scale battle system, explaining the upsides and downsides of diminishing returns from zergs. (Thanks, David!)

Meanwhile, Project Gorgon promised tweaks to its Poetry Appreciation skill (<3), Saga of Lucimia demoed its Pyrography skill, OrbusVR welcomed more players to its open alpha, Shroud of the Avatar rolled out R44 and cracked down on insider trading exploits, Chronicles of Elyria posted a whopper of a roadmap, Global Adventures’ Kickstarter ends tomorrow, and Star Citizen clarified (sort of?) the number of planets it will launch with and effectively announced another 3.0 delay.

Read on for more on what’s up with MMO crowdfunding over the last week and the regular roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’ve got our eye on.

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Tencent buys into Frontier, recruits Batman to give its MOBA western appeal

Two MMO forces are now bound together in will and purpose — or at least in stocks and finances.

Tencent, the world’s biggest games publisher by revenue, recently purchased 9% of Frontier Development’s stock in a transaction that topped $23 million. The Elite: Dangerous developer said that the sale of the 3.37 million shares will be used to invest in growth and increase its cash reserves.

So what’s Tencent’s next move in world domination? The Chinese company is heavily revising its popular mobile MOBA, Honour of Kings, in order to appeal more to western sensibilities and giving it a new name, currently Arena of Valor. Additionally, the company has signed a deal with DC Comics to bring in (why not) Batman and the Joker as playable characters.

The MOBA has drawn the ire of the Chinese government, but even so, it’s amassed 55 million daily players and looks poised for global success.

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Frontier Developments plans a convention for Elite: Dangerous in October

Do you have a deep and abiding love for Planet Coaster? Probably not. How about Elite: Dangerous? Yes, that’s good, many more hands are being raised. How would you like to attend a convention for both of them in October? Frontier Developments announced the upcoming Frontier Expo 2017 in London’s Olympic Park, a one-day convention on October 7th devoted to both of the studio’s games and what comes next for the titles.

It is not immediately clear how much overlap there may between the fandoms for the two games, but that may be part of the entertainment.

Elite: Dangerous fans will be able to learn more about the game’s upcoming plans and features and attend panels about the real-world science behind the game, as well as collecting various exclusive digital and physical merchandise at the convention. If you’re going to be in the area and have a powerful need to be in on the ground floor (or would consider flying out to London for a one-day convention), tickets go on sale in about two days.

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Make My MMO: Albion Online joins the list of launched crowdfunded MMORPGs (July 22, 2017)

This week in MMO crowdfunding, indie sandbox Albion Online — whose 250,000 founders reportedly crowdfunded the game for almost $10,000,000 — formally launched. The buy-to-play isometric game has hardcore old-school flair with a potentially alienating PvP template, but it’s brought plenty of PvE content along for the ride in an attempt to woo a more diverse playerbase.

Meanwhile, Project Gorgon made progress on its 64-bit test build, OrbusVR plans to open its alpha next weekend, City of Titans released a new lore piece, Camelot Unchained showed off more of its UI, Ashes of Creation demoed arenas, Path of Exile picked a date for Fall of Oriath, and Crowfall pushed its very first trial campaigns to testers. Oh yeah, and some Star Citizen drama.

Read on for more on what’s up with MMO crowdfunding over the last week and the regular roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’ve got our eye on.

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Massively Overthinking: Building a better MMORPG economy

We are on a roll with the epic questions for Overthinking lately! “The recent article about monetization got me thinking about just how much most modern MMOs are still trying to replicate real-world capitalist economies,” MOP Patron Avaera begins.

“Virtual currency is usually earned proportional to various measures of virtual effort that are intended to be wealth-generating activities – selling loot earned from skillful PvE hunting, selling crafted goods made from resources gathered over time, owning items or land that generates tradeable material over time. However, virtual effort doesn’t have the quite the same limitations, scarcity, and creativity as real-world effort, and these systems seem prone to exploitation by users/bots that can easily outmatch casual players in terms of how much virtual effort and time they can expend, leading to various RMT problems and artificially distorted economies. How would you go about avoiding this problem, if you had the god-like powers of a game designer? Is there a way to set up a virtual economy so that it isn’t prone to exploitation by bots or gold-farmers, and will we ever see a virtual game currency that can truly be exchanged with a real one?”

I posed Avaera’s question to our staff to mull over.

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Elite Dangerous’ David Braben on communities, MMOs, F2P, and the space game genre

Elite Dangerous’ David Braben has a big spread in Rolling Stone’s Glixel blog this week, and it’s a fun read as he zips around discussing Trappist-1, Roman slavery, Star Wars, ant society, Shakespeare, Ursula Le Guin, computer science jobs, and the future of humanity. It’s a whirlwind, but he does eventually get around to talking about Elite itself, admitting that while the game will never achieve “perfection,” it’s “definitely approaching” his ideal space game, as “accurate as we can possibly make it.”

“When we first greenlit Elite: Dangerous, there were no other major space games since Freelancer,” he says. “Now, there are dozens. So, I think we’ve succeeded. We’ve brought the genre back to life. And we’ve proven there’s quite a lot of demand for this sort of game. Yes, it’s niche, but it’s quite a big niche. And we’ve got [Star Citizen’s] Chris Roberts coming along now, and so many other games that look interesting. No Man’s Sky, even.”

He also argues that free-to-play is a “challenge” to online communities and instancing in MMOs.

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One Shots: Man of Tungsten

Look there! Up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s… Mysecretid!

Who among us hasn’t played a video game at some point and decided to create his or her favorite fictional character? At least Mysecretid is being honest about it: “DCUO sets up this idea that the players can be proteges of existing DC heroes and villains. Although many players ignore this possibility, I decided to make my character a clear Superman fan — as I am.

“I realize that Superman is often terribly written, but when someone ‘gets’ the character, he’s golden. I re-created my main from the PC on my PS4. I’ve been having a lot of fun, despite the game’s flaws.”

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The Stream Team: Scoping out Elite Dangerous on the PlayStation 4

It’s time to get dangerous. Elite Dangerous.

Er, with me. On YouTube. As a newbie. On a PlayStation 4. You know, this is already sounding pretty dodgy, guys. Expect a lot of self-destructs and technical difficulties as I jump into the cockpit, controller in hand, and try to get into a game I’ve mostly read about from the safety of the internet. We’ll be streaming this time on YouTube to suit PS4 play, so that’ll be fun to try!

What: Elite Dangerous
Who: Andrew Ross
When: 4:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

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