Beta 2 for Elite: Dangerous has just gone live, bringing with it a tonne of updates, and there are plenty of new screens to “ooh” over.
If you’re in the beta, then you should be able to download the beta 2 client right now. You can expect new ships, new outposts, new progression, new music, more of the galaxy to explore, optional tutorials, optional pre-flight control checks, new planetary rings, and… well, lots of stuff, but also a load of optimisations and little improvements. I’ve put a list of what Frontier Developments reckon are the “highlights” of this version of Elite: Dangerous below.
- New progression, with combat ratings from ‘Harmless’ up to ‘Elite’.
- Reputations per system and per faction that influence attitudes and prices offered to players.
- 570 star systems and 381,033 cubic light years to explore.
- Discovery, exploration and charting of new systems and the option to trade gathered data.
- Detailed system maps.
- New Outposts (small, exposed ‘roadside café’ stations in remote systems).
- New Ocellus starport.
- Further upgradeable Life Support modules, Engines, Hyperdrives, Power Distributors, Sensors, Shield Generators and Cargo Racks for all ships.
- New weapons, including mines and a Cargo Hatch Limpet built for non-lethal piracy.
- Visibility of other ships in supercruise, and the ability to track pilots through supercruise and hyperspace.
- In-game GalNet newsfeed, reporting story events from around the galaxy and each system.
- Gradual ‘wear and tear’ on ships.
- New Lakon Asp Explorer ship.
- All backers names from the appropriate crowd-funding reward tiers have been added to the NPC naming database.
If that’s not quite enough for you, then beta 3 is due out on 28 October. The features and updates present in that will be revealed over the next few weeks.
Finally: screenshots! Have a look below to see the new prettiness of Elite: Dangerous. If you’re not in the beta but want in, you can get access throughfor £50, with a discount available for existing backers. That said I tend to frown upon the idea of paying for beta access, so don’t take that as an endorsement.