How Elite Dangerous’ Engineers update triggered a player massacre


Stick around in an MMO long enough, and sooner or later you’ll bear witness to that one patch or expansion that triggers a digital trainwreck. Perhaps this moment has arrived for Elite Dangerous, as its recent Engineers update has caused no end of problems for the sci-fi flight sim.

The major crux of the uproar from the playerbase seems to center around jacked-up NPC difficulty and abilities, which one player labeled as “crazy badass Bruce Lee AI.” Sure, you can feel bad that computer-controlled characters have been cannon fodder for players over the years, but now that positions are reversed, the community is not loving it, especially when enemy ships are practically one-shotting pilots left and right.

Frontier finally addressed the issue yesterday, saying, “There’s no denying that higher ranked NPCs are now tougher to beat than ever before. We’re aware from your feedback that this hasn’t hit that balance, either because of bugs or a number of other reasons, and so we’re going to be making some changes to help address those concerns. The first change is that we will be removing almost all Engineers upgrades from the NPCs in game.”

The studio also said that it will be creating a new forum to tackle some of the other bugs from the expansion: “Staying on the topic of AI, we have also had a number of people discussing bugged or cheating weapons and abnormal, overly aggressive, NPC behaviour where NPCs are attacking Commanders without being wanted, being full of cargo or for other known obvious reasons. In order to investigate these concerns more closely there are two new bug forum threads dedicated to these issues specifically.”

Source: Official forums. Thanks Orian for the tip!
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