Elite: Dangerous Update 1.3

Yesterday I received an email telling me that update 1.3 for Elite: Dangerous would be out in May. I haven’t played the game in a little while, but the new update might very well bring me back into the game.

To me, Elite: Dangerous feels rather like a anti-desolation game. Though the gameworld is vast and empty, traveling the vast expanses of space evoke in me feelings of calm and serenity. Where games like Kenshi and DayZ thrives of despair and abandonment, Elite: Dangerous produces a quasi-zen effect.

I’ve been more than happy just trucking from station to station, selling my cargo and evading the system authorities when I’m carrying illegal goods. The fact that turning my character’s head left or right activates control panels is a nice touch that reinforces your role as a “real” pilot. Sure, I could use hotkeys, but there’s just something about looking around that cockpit.

Update 1.3, however, is aimed at PVP, something from which I usually stay away. However, the update will introduce a revamped faction system where players will be able to directly influence a faction’s goals and objectives. This is something that’s been missing from a game like Elite: Dangerous, and something that I’ve been eagerly awaiting. I’ll probably continue playing the role of a smuggler, but this time I’ll be doing it for the good of my faction, and run missions that directly influence my faction’s growth.

I’ve always love this kind of political aspect often found in space sims and 4X games, and though the update doesn’t really change the how of the game (ie, the way you play), it goes have a subtle influence on the why. Normally, I wouldn’t get myself involved in PVP, however, because it’ll be in the interest of a greater polity, it makes it worthwhile for my character’s story to become entangled with this particular thread.

It’ll be interesting to see how it actually all plays out.


About Erik Bigras

Erik Bigras is an independent scholar. He studied as a PhD Candidate in the Department of Science and Technology Studies at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He graduated with a BA in Anthropology (2009) from the University of Prince Edward Island (Canada) where he focused on the creation of subjectivities through digital media. He's been playing video games since the mid-1980s, but expanded his gaming interest to table-top RPGs in the early 2010s.
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