One of my favorite games lately and has been for about a year is Elite Dangerous, this game is a Space sandbox MMO where you create your own story, there is no campaign to follow or singular story, instead you get immersed into a Galaxy where each solar system has it’s own independant factions as well as there being powers that control multiple systems. You join any of the powers and small factions or none of them, you gain reputation from doing legwork which can be transporting goods, destroying enemy targets, delivering information, retrieving cargo and more. For larger operations you contribute by mining resources or finding new bits of information about the new alien species discovered.
But mostly I only recently bought the Horizons update for Elite: Dangerous even though it has been out for a while and the Commanders release is only a short time away. Horizons unlocked the ability to land on moons and small planet surfaces where you can deploy an SRV and both mine and explore the tops of moons. Moons vary from rocky to metal, there are no water based landing planets so you won’t see any planets you can land on that have atmospheres with forests, deserts, oceans yet but for now it is all about exploring and mining moons. This includes finding Engineers who live on moon bases and can do custom modifications to your ship, making you uniquely outfit your ship model to have extra oomph for some components.
Elite Dangerous is for those who want to just explore a galaxy of 400+ billion stars, you can make a name for yourself because each star system you discover and scan if you are the first live player you get your name permanently added to the database as the one who discovered that star. For those people who liked No Man’s Sky and the discover and exploration aspect, this game is great without the surface life forms and actually leaving your ship perspective. The dogfights are intense and they can be against traders or pirates, or even if you break the law you may find yourself at the barrel end of the police force. You can smuggle illegal goods but end up paying more in fines if you aren’t caught, and the learning curve to piloting a vessel is steep for a video game making it more like a space flight simulator in that regard. The game has numerous tutorials and training missions before you dive into the open world. You can meet other players and form wings where you perform missions together like trading and combat and share each others spoils, or you can simply play solo and never meet another live person. You can even do private instances where you and only your friends play and won’t see other live players except for each other. It is this level of flexibility that makes Elite: Dangerous so compelling and so amazing, though the limit of only 32 live people on the same instance in a system can feel a little limited, it isn’t as much as you think when that many are in a single combat zone and it gets very hectic.
The game is just gorgeous and it is memerizing to star at the stars, planets and surfaces of everything, the ships are really fun with each one having it’s own feel and limitations and advantages. Larger ships are heavy and have little maneuverability compared to small ships which are agile, some are geared for transport, others for combat. It has taken me playing many months and I have only acquired around 50 million credits, which is only a fraction of what I need for some of the top ships in the game like the Python and Anaconda which can cost hundreds of millions of credits to deck out with the highest quality components. You also need to make sure to reserve enough credits for insurance in case your ship is destroyed or you can find yourself losing all your hard work and ending up back with the default sidewinder the starter ship of the game.
You can find a lot of my Elite: Dangerous videos on our YouTube Channel, such as the one in the example video below. Though the game may not be for everyone due to the learning curve and it not being a strictly action game, though combat is always close if you want it to be, you do spend a lot of time flying toward stations, jumping between stars and hauling goods until you can get a decent enough combat ship.