elite: dangerous cqc

Something I apparently completely missed in the E3 madness is Elite: Dangerous’ announcement of a new player-vs-player ‘CQC’ mode. CQC standing for Close Quarters Combat, of course.

This was reportedly demoed behind closed doors at the event, which goes some way to explaining how it slipped my notice.

CQC is going to be a stand-alone multiplayer mode for Elite: Dangerous, accessed from the main menu. It’ll drop you into some instant, twelve player combat with familiar match types like free-for-all Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch and (somehow) Capture the Flag. Presumably the flag just sticks to your craft, rather than you having to lean out of the window to nab it.

According to this Frontier-interviews-Frontier piece with the CQC designers, players will be able to fly three different ships: the Eagle, Sidewinder, or the new F63 Condor Federal Fighter. Compared to the other two, the Federal Fighter is “smaller and lighter, very fast and more manoeuvrable.” But it won’t stand up to much punishment.

The designers say they’ve reworked the game’s sensor system to make line of sight a key part of CQC. In this mode, breaking line of sight will also break a target lock. So there should be more emphasis on ducking behind asteroids or other obstacles.

There will also be four ‘power-ups’: “a stealth mode, a speed boost, a damage boost and a shield boost.”

A release date for CQC on PC doesn’t appear to have been mentioned yet, but it will be added to Elite: Dangerous, for free, this year.

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