Frontier Developments have announced that Elite: Dangerous will be entering the Beta 2 stage on 30 September, accompanied by a pretty robust set of new features. These include rankings, reputations, outposts, a new ship and 4k/SLI support.
We’ve written about a few of these before. You can learn about how outposts work by reading this story, or how Frontier intends to implement exploration by heading through this link. That latter piece also mentions the 4k resolution/SLI support.
The ranking system will be familiar to anybody who’s played an Elite title before, and in Elite: Dangerous it’ll be no different. Your visible combat rating will go from ‘harmless’ all the way up through ‘competent’ and ‘deadly’ to ‘Elite.’ You’ll have a reputation too, tracked within each system and linked to the Federation, Empire and Independent Alliance power blocs. This can affect goods pricing and whether faction ships will be hostile towards you.
With the addition of a more fleshed-out exploration system, it also makes sense to introduce the new ship: The Asp Explorer.
Ships in Beta 2 can be fitted with a lot more things, including “different Life Support modules, Engines, Hyperdrives, Power Distributors, Sensors, Shield Generators and Cargo Racks. You also are given much more information on upgrades to inform your choices.” Visible wear and tear will occur on your ships as well.
Those are the main changes, but here’s a bullet point summary too:
- Combat ratings from ‘Harmless’ all the way up to ‘Elite’.
- Reputations per system and galaxy-wide that influence attitudes and prices offered to you.
- Ability to discover and explore and scan new systems and sell the data on them.
- Detailed system maps.
- Around 500 additional star systems to explore.
- Lakon Asp Explorer ships added.
- Much greater variety of upgradable Life Support modules, Engines, Hyperdrives, Power Distributors, Sensors, Shield Generators and Cargo Racks for all ships.
- Ships are subject to gradual ‘wear and tear’.
- New weapons including mines and a new non-lethal missile-deployed cargo hatch disruptor for piracy.
- Outposts (small, exposed ‘roadside café’ stations in remote locations)
- Occelus starports, a version of which can move around for early civilization of new systems and space tourism.
- Visibility of other ships in supercruise, and track others through supercruise and hyperspace.
- Newsfeeds about events from the rest of the galaxy and player activity in your local system.
- All backers names (from the appropriate crowd-funding reward tiers) have been added to the NPC naming database.
For more details about the Elite: Dangerous pricing system, read this post about price plans, orders and pre-orders.