Go head-to-head against the galaxy’s greatest pilots in PVP dogfights.
User reviews:
Mostly Negative (50 reviews) - 36% of the 50 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Mixed (343 reviews) - 47% of the 343 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Feb 16, 2016

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July 8

Elite Dangerous Arena is Completely Free This Weekend!

Greetings Commanders,

Elite Dangerous Arena will be completely free on Steam and the Frontier Store this weekend. If you purchase a copy of Arena between now and 6PM BST on Monday July 11 you won’t be charged a thing, and you’ll retain access to the game even after the deal ends.

This 100%-off deal will bring a whole new host of Commanders to the CQC Arena, so make sure you jump in now to show them the ropes and take advantage of the unique benefits that reaching prestige rank in Arena can bring to your main game account.

When you reach CQC Rank 50 you’ll be given the option to 'Prestige'. You will set your rank back to one and lose all your unlocks, but in return you’ll be able to earn more credits for use in the main game, and get a permit to the Attilius Orbital starport in CD-4311917 where you’ll get exclusive discounts on many modules and ships. You can prestige up to level 9 and at that point you’ll be receiving the maximum amount of credits you can take in to the Elite Dangerous galaxy.

With Arena being completely free until 6PM BST on Monday July 11, now’s the perfect time to recruit new wingmates to join you in the CQC Arena.



Disclaimer: Arena is the PVP mode already in Elite Dangerous so all players who own Elite Dangerous or Elite Dangerous: Horizons will already have access to it. Simply select Arena from the in-game main menu to play.

18 comments Read more

About This Game

Fly agile fighters and go head-to-head against the galaxy’s greatest pilots in PVP dogfights - easy to pick up controls reward your developing skills with more to master for that ultimate combat edge. Choose your ship, customise your load out and prepare for instant Arena-based action to earn the right to become Elite.

Elite Dangerous: Arena brings Elite Dangerous’ Close Quarter Combat (CQC) PVP game to players as a standalone release, featuring full cross-compatibility with the large and growing Elite Dangerous player community.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows 7, Windows 8 (64 bit)
    • Processor: Quad Core CPU (4 x 2Ghz)
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GTX 260 / ATI 4870HD
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 7 GB available space
    • OS: Windows 7, Windows 8 (64 bit)
    • Processor: Intel Core i7-3770K Quad Core CPU or better / AMD FX 4350 Quad Core CPU or better
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GTX 770 / AMD Radeon R9 280X
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 7 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Supports Oculus Rift and TrackIR
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Mostly Negative (50 reviews)
Mixed (343 reviews)
Recently Posted
4.2 hrs
Posted: August 25
Haven't tried it without VR mode, But I have in HTC vive. I would not recommend if you get easily Motion sick. I got it a few times, the control of the ship is hard to use. Can't find any online matches either. I guess it's because it's a DLC/another game Im not sure what I would call it, but anyways, I recommend it if you have a flight stick.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.2 hrs
Posted: August 20
Product received for free
I don't know what to think of the game, because it won't let me log in, I tried multiple times to register an account with diffrent emails, and none of them worked, If I hadn't gotten this game for free, I would demand a refund
Helpful? Yes No Funny
milk drinker
0.9 hrs
Posted: August 17
well, this game is definitely the worst to fly space sim ive ever tried. visibility, controls, flightmodel... everything is done so bad i had to uninstall after about half an hour. and im a space sim fan so this has to be really bad to make me uninstall it...
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.1 hrs
Posted: August 14
uninstall works
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.6 hrs
Posted: August 13
not bad
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.3 hrs
Posted: August 9
Product received for free
i got the game for free and i hated it so much that i removed it from my library ! 10/10 lol
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.2 hrs
Posted: August 4
Product received for free
will not allow me to make an account
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.3 hrs
Posted: August 4
Product received for free
This piece of dog ♥♥♥♥, do people even play it? Can't even find matches.
I'm glad I didn't paid for this.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Cyber Centaur
12.7 hrs
Posted: August 3
Product received for free
Helpful? Yes No Funny
11.4 hrs
Posted: August 3
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
371 of 431 people (86%) found this review helpful
17 people found this review funny
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: February 16
this is included in the versions above, this game is like a stand alone for people who just want to dog fight in ships and not have the full game, its cqc basicaly, so you have all the fun of teamdeath match and capture the flag in a dog fight kinda mode and not the full game.. its worth the cheap price, and controlls are easy to setup,
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1,485 of 1,901 people (78%) found this review helpful
332 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 7
- Sees free game and decides to download it
- "Please Create a frontier account"
- Redirects to website even though i have a frontier account
- Logs in
- Needs product key for a free game
- Proceeds back to launcher to log in
- "A verification key has been sent to your email"
- Enters verification key
- "Please purchase/redeem Elite Dangerous to continue"
- Steam page said it was standalone so I go to their site
- Find Elite Dangerous: Arena in their store for free
- Add to cart and proceed to checkout
- Requires credit card and billing address for a free digital game
- Decides its not worth the effort to play

0/10 Watching paint dry is a lot less stressful go waste your time that way
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
188 of 233 people (81%) found this review helpful
11 people found this review funny
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 16
If you already owned Elite Dangerous, STOP!
You can get it for free via their store page, where you can request CDKey to be redeemed on your steam.

If you don't know what is Elite Dangerous
Elite Dangerous: Arena is the mini version of the normal Elite Dangerous, which only contain the close quarter combats in it. Both "Arena" and normal Elite Dangerous plays on same CQC realms so if you own Arena and your friend own Elite Dangerous, you both can play together.

About Elite Dangerous: Arena
As I mentioned previously, it's a stripped version of Elite Dangerous, with much lower price point. I guess FDev wants to appease casual gamers which into space combat dogfighting game (but not into Elite) so they don't have to dish money on the full game.

What's inside?
  • 4 Ships, each with unlockable loadouts
  • 3 Game modes (Team Deathmatch, Deathmatch, Capture the Flag)
  • 5 Different maps
  • Progressions, as you rank up you unlock new modules and loadout.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
248 of 342 people (73%) found this review helpful
11 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
11.0 hrs on record
Posted: June 10
This Is An amazing game, when you find a match. Its Always region locked, so you rarely find a game. If they implimented the feature where you can change the server, or let everyone play with eachother, It would make the game 100x better.
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125 of 165 people (76%) found this review helpful
8 people found this review funny
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 16
Elite Dangerous: Arena. A standalone version of the CQC module that is included in Elite Dangerous.
If you buy Elite: Dangerous you get Arena included, and if you buy Arena, you can then purchase Elite Dangerous for the difference in price.

Though the developers compare it to Call of Duty, i'd say this could become the CSGO of space sim shooters if it develops in the right way.. At the moment you can play DM, TDM or CTF matchmaking gamemodes. You can add friends and queue together to join the same games. As you play, you'll rank up and unlock new ship slots and modules to use.

Like most competitive multiplayer games, if you're new, it can be frustrating. If you jump in to DM you will get killed over and over and it will seem like it is impossible to avoid laser fire. This game isn't like War Thunder Arcade mode, you can't wiggle your ship around and dodge bullets, if there is a player behind you in open space, he WILL hit you. You need to learn that this game is less about fancy evasive action and twitch shooter precision, and more about judging the bigger picture and getting your ship in the right place and avoid being caught in the open.

Features ED: Arena needs:
1) Leagues and ELO based player rankings with player avatars.
2) Lobbies or some kind of indication of who is online and in which game modes.
3) Ability to host custom unranked games to mess around with friends and try things out.
4) Bots.
5) Spectator mode.
6) Cosmetic unlocks, more maps, modules, ships etc

I have confidence that the Devs fully intend to add many of the features I list here but I can't help but feel they should have held back release until they included some of these things as they are kind of essential if they expect the gamemode to maintain a strong player base.
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84 of 107 people (79%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 17
Do not buy this if you already own Elite Dangerous.
Elite Dangerous: Arena is a standalone version of lite Dangerous's CQC mode. It is the competitive PVP mode in the full game of Elite Dangerous but without the full open world PVE content.
If you buy the full game you will get access to these modes anyway.
If you are solely looking for the constructed PVP content then this is well worth the price. You are contented to others that play these modes in the full game so the population of games is already pretty high so finding a game is quick.
You rank up after each game and slowly unlock access to new ships and upgrades such as weapons and shields.
Defiantly worth it if you are only interested in the comabt element of the game but if you want the full open world experience make sure to purchase the full title.
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244 of 358 people (68%) found this review helpful
14 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: July 7
I haven't played a game yet but I did manage to get this working, so here's how.

1) install the game just like any other steam game
2) copy the 5 part product key to a text document (This is a steam popup that's hard to miss) copy to clipboard
3) Regiter an account if you haven't already done so.
4) Look for the area that says Support Notice: New Players (under the Server Status)
5) go to https://tools.elitedangerous.com/en/register
6) Enter the product code without dashes (one part at a time)
7) run the game and login
8) verify the code sent to your email.
9) Play the game

Lots of steps for a game that was free for a period of time.
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95 of 135 people (70%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 8
This is more of a guideline to people buying it since there's (once again --' ) a lot of hate on the game.

opinion on Arena at the bottom.

First of all: If you have Elite Dangerous, don't buy this, you already have it. start the game, in main menu click start, bottom option. yes, main game and Arena players play on the same server. You do have a key on your frontier developments account. you can find it under partner keys, however, you can't gift it to others! this is unique to you.

For the guys who DO NOT own elite dangerous:

'easiest' way of getting this is going to https://www.frontierstore.net/eur/games/elite-dangerous-cat/elite-dangerous-arena.html (official site, also supports the devs the most) buy it, maybe you're required to do some paypal stuff depending on your world location, but you won't be charged anything. Okay, now you have the Arena game, "But i want this on steam!" no worries, as i mentioned above: go in your account to partner keys https://www.frontierstore.net/eur/frontier_partnerkeys/ there you simply press the button that says Elite Dangerous: Arena (Steam), copy the key and in steam's windows lower left corner click + ADD A GAME -> activate a product on steam, insert the code and done! (this is quite common with games you can also buy outside of steam.)

My opinion on this game:

I currently have more of a MIXED OPINION on the game, sure it's fun and a good way of getting the feel of the flight model... the major drawback i'm having with the game is very few people play Arena, 99% of the players are in the main game. What benefits does arena gives in the main game? not so much to be honest. if you get prestige you'll require a permit to visit a system, also every time you win a round you get a bit of cash. So why do I play arena? well, if i want some instant action (after waiting for players). Some explorers being out of civilized space crave for some elite dangerous action once in a while, so they play arena. Then why the up vote? seeing people struggling getting to play the game makes me sad. why they won't recommend the game in that case is totally understandable, i recommend the game to ballance it more to a mixed overall opinion by a little bit.

One last thing: The devs play arena every, i believe friday, and live stream it. while you are playing against the devs you can win IRL prices, like the main game, horizons expansion, merchandise, ...

Hope to see you at the games cmdr!

yours sincerely,
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67 of 94 people (71%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
2.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 8
First things first:



Ignore my play time. I play this through the main game instead of the standalone (had to install the standalone to write this review).

Now that's out of the way, on to the actual review:

Awesome PVP spinoff from Elite Dangerous where you can practice your combat skills against other players, without the risk of loosing the ships that you've worked so hard for in the main game... Good graphics, fast action, very well optimised... The modern equivalent of Xwing vs Tie Fighter.

It's a fun little FPS in space, with you piloting the very small agile fighters that you'd sometimes see defending capital ships.

It features rank progression with loadout upgrades and different ships, there are 3 different game modes (Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag), a variety of weapons, the ability to use multiple controllers (I find 2 joysticks the most fun way to play, but a regular hotas works, you can use a control pad, and even keyboard and mouse is viable (however if you use keyboard and mouse: CHANGE the controls, defaults are horrible from what I can remember).

As an added bonus, any credits you make in the Arena (aka CQC) will transfer over to the main game but to begin with the cash rewards are pretty low. You have to get a decent rank to start getting decent credits from it.

Been on the fence about buying Elite Dangerous? This will give you an idea how the combat works, though everyone will die a lot faster in these tiny little fighters compared to the bigger ships from the main game.

It's going free to play for the weekend I'm writing this, as sadly player count has been a bit limited recently (most people prefer the main game itself, but many like myself enjoy both - just for different reasons).

And you can ignore most of the negative reviews, most of them haven't even played it and instead are complaining about having to copy a cd key over to activate it which you only have to do once. There's a couple that have valid points, like low numbers of players, but hopefully this free weekend will help with that.
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54 of 73 people (74%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 16
If you are planning to buy the game but you are not sure if you like the gameplay or not then you can just buy this, play training missions and then hop into the arena. If you decide to buy the game you are going to get your money for this back.
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