Personally speaking, my own delve in to Elite: Dangerous for Choose My Adventure showed a game that definitely has more going on just beneath the surface I got to scratch, though I was also almost terminally lost. Both of these matters appear to be improving with the announcement of Interstellar Initiatives and tweaks to the game’s new user onboarding.
What are Interstellar Initiatives? They’re a series of in-game events that will take about a month to complete which could have greater ramifications for the wider Elite: Dangerous galaxy, including a permanent change to a system, a new module or synthesis recipe, or even a shake-up of the galaxy’s superpowers.
The first Interstellar Initiative is called “Bridging the Gap.” This event centers around a new corporation called Zende Partners, which seeks to harvest Guardian technology. Should Commanders choose to join in, pooled resources could lead to the creation of a permanent megaship ferry, which will then travel to a location voted by players to excavate Guardian relics and make gathering Guardian materials easier. Of course, this new gold rush won’t be smooth sailing, with hints that a rival corporation will try to muscle in and provide a different benefit to players entirely.
Before that, however, is a new April update which will try to ease Commanders in to the basics of the game, which was greatly expanded upon since we last heard about it. When you create a new character, you’ll be guided through the steps of naming yourself, choosing your avatar’s body type, and previewing and naming your first Sidewinder ship. After those decisions are made, you will choose from one of two starting stations geared towards brand new players or seasoned pilots. From there, you can either take up the training simulation missions that have been added to the game already, or hop right in to your chosen system from the off. Don’t worry, though; you can still select the training missions, scenarios, and videos from your ship’s right-hand panel.
This April update isn’t just about the new pilot, however; there’s also a new interface for the Commodities Market, which refines the UI with new information and adds filters to pare down things you’re looking for. There’s also a new Advanced Docking Computer module, which will handle docking and undocking automatically, a new Supercruise Assist module, and new slots for all ships.
The April update is due to arrive next Tuesday, April 23rd, while Bridging the Gap will land on Monday, April 29th. A video detailing Interstellar Initiatives is just below, and a video of the latest developer livestream outlining the April update is embedded just below that, set to play right at the point things are being demonstrated.