Elite Dangerous

While unscrupulous smugglers, bounty hunters and pirates might be welcome in Elite Dangerous, some rogues have been ruffling their fellow pilots' feathers by using hacks to augment their ships. Programs used to exploit the game aren't new to Elite, but members of the community have noticed a rise, with a recent Reddit thread highlighting a specific group that's been active since at least August 2018. 

Reddit user ryan_m17 claims that a private Discord has been distributing a trainer for the game that allows players to significantly enhance their ships and tweak any module. This gives players using it an obvious advantage in PvP, and while that means they can then be reported, the trainer is still apparently in use. 

The problem doesn't seem to be recent. One player told me that cheating has seen their guild numbers decline over the last couple of years, and while these invincible ships cause lots of issues in PvP, the hacks also interfere with the PvE background simulation. Some players say their groups lost systems to people using hacks or bots. It's a galactic threat, that affects multiplayer and singleplayer.

Frontier routinely bans reported players and investigates cheating, and a ticket was submitted to Frontier, along with an export of the Discord. But without feedback from Frontier, players aren't sure if these problems are being tackled. From their perspective, they're being ignored and the cheating continues. 

"We take activities of this nature seriously," a Frontier representative told me. "Our support teams are aware and investigating." A similar response was given to viewers of a recent livestream when the subject came up in chat.

The problem with acknowledging and discussing these things is that it draws attention to them, but it also means players are better able to look out for people exploiting the game.

Some players are calling for harsher punishments for cheating. Temporary bans to to solo followed by a permaban on the third strike is how Frontier deals with players chaught cheating, but even relegated to solo these hacks could still affect the game for other players.

"Even as a solo explorer, this affects you," DarthHM said. "Imagine getting to the far side of the galaxy and finding a system first discovered by some goober who can insta-jump anywhere. Perma ban to solo is not severe enough."

While players were no doubt hoping for more information, at least Frontier is looking into the issues. And it should go without saying, but using these hacks will probably cost you access to a big portion of the game.  

Elite Dangerous - BrettC Frontier
Greetings Commanders,

We have released an update for Elite Dangerous. April Update, Patch 1 is a minor update containing fixes and improvements.

Commodities Market
  • Stopped allowing players to attempt to buy more goods from a market than it can actually supply
  • Increased the acceleration when choosing the quantity of commodity when buying or selling
  • The sell pop up now defaults to max amount of the chosen commodity you're carrying
  • If the player is currently docked at the station that is also set as the saved comparison market, the comparison column and its header will update and use the galactic average prices to calculate the profits
  • If the player doesn't have Horizons, planetary surface markets are not considered when looking for best prices in the 'also consumed by' / 'produced by' lists
Crashes/Stability
  • Fixed a crash that could occur when using the FSS mode
  • Fixed a crash that could occur when exiting the game
  • Fixed a crash that could occur when sat in a dock
Damage Balancing
  • Fixed issue that caused more damage to be applied to SRVs when in multiplayer sessions
Engineering
  • Reverted changes made to the Drag Munitions special in the initial April Update release
Exploration
  • Fix new Codex discovery notifications not displaying in the cockpit UI when proximity scanning or using the discovery scanner's system scan to discover all stars in a system
Galaxy Map
  • Added a background to the control key along the bottom of the screen, to increase readability whilst in lighter areas of the map
Inventory
  • Added in a decrease button when removing cargo from your ship, even when at 1, so that players can quickly select the maximum amount they hold
Knowledge Base
  • Fixed missing non-English VO for knowledge base articles
Main Menu
  • Fixed inconsistencies in options order between main menu and pause menu
Modules
  • Fixed the module tab not updating in real time when modules have been shut down due to power usage
  • Stopped module priorities being reset to 1 during FSD transitions
  • Stopped the Shield Generator module from turning back on (when deactivated) during FSD transitions
  • Removed the synthesis recipe that was being mistakenly applied to the Enforcer Cannon
  • Fixed an issue where Enforcer Cannons would erroneously report that they could carry more ammo than they could
Navigation Panel
  • Increased the font size for the remaining number of jumps
  • Fixed missing 'clear filter' option from the SRV
  • Bookmarked locations will now have an icon to show it's marked
  • Selection UI will now stop at the top and bottom of the list of locations, whilst scrolling through them. A subsequent press of the button will then wrap around to the top/bottom.
  • Added text to explain if a stellar body requires a permit
Performance
  • Fixed the frame rate loss when the 'FX' graphical setting was set to anything other than 'off'
Pilots' Federation District
  • Added system descriptions to the galaxy map
Pilot's Handbook
  • Fixed various typos and formatting issues
  • Added links from the mission detail screen to relevant handbook articles
  • Added an 'Exit' button which will quit out of the Codex completely, rather than go back one page
Player Journal

  • Include BodyName and radius in Status.json file, when in SRV
  • Fixed a bug in the ship loadout info after swapping modules


Starport Services
  • 'Re-stock all' option now works correctly
Supercruise Assist
  • Fixed the keybinding for toggling orbit lines on/off not working whilst Supercruise Assist is active
  • Fixed an issue that caused the 'target obscured' message to not appear when a Nav Beacon was obscured by a star
  • Stopped prompts appearing whilst in FSS mode
Server Fixes
  • Re-enabled Codex discoveries for terraformable and non-terraformable ammonia worlds
  • Implemented an automatic disconnect when a player is removed from a private group they're currently flying in
  • Fixed ellipsis character on the main menu news in Russian
  • Fixed faction reputation and career rank changes from completing objectives at installations, megaships and Conflict Zones
Server fixes released since April Update launched
  • Fixed a number of causes for unable to load Commander data from the main menu
  • Tiana Fortune's medium and large landing pads should now be usable again
  • Fixed the Galaxy Map's planet port commodity filter
  • Fixed a number of performance & stability issues
Elite Dangerous

Hutton Orbital is perhaps the most notorious space station in all of Elite Dangerous. Located in Alpha Centauri—just down the road from our own solar system—this modest little outpost is almost 7 million light seconds from the system's hyperspace jump arrival point. This means that, even travelling in supercruise, it can take over an hour of continuous flying to reach it.

Some players discover this the hard way. They accept a mission in a nearby system to ferry cargo to Hutton Orbital, blissfully unaware of the sheer distance they have to cover to make the delivery. They point their ship towards the station and wonder why, after twenty minutes, or even longer, they don't seem to be getting any closer to their destination. This happened to me when I was a rookie pilot, yet here I am, years later, flying there purely by choice.

The long haul to Hutton Orbital has become something of a rite of passage for Elite players—and one developer Frontier has acknowledged with the Hutton Mug, a rare commodity that can only be bought at the station. So last night I decided to make the gruelling journey to this backwater outpost myself—partly for the novelty of having endured it, but mostly for the mug. I like mugs.

It doesn't look that far on the system map.

It's not a particularly difficult challenge. You just point your ship at the station, engage the throttle, and occasionally adjust your heading—and not even that often. But it is deeply boring; a test of patience rather than skill. But I don't think that'll be a problem for me, because I'm a Euro Truck Simulator 2 veteran. Driving in one direction for long periods of time is actually fun to me—and in Elite I don't even have to worry about traffic or changing gears.

That's not to say the trip is completely danger free. As someone who always flies in open, a mode where it's possible to run into other humans, I'm a little worried about some griefer camped out at Hutton waiting to blow me to pieces the moment I arrive. I've also heard of players running out of fuel and getting stranded in deep space, but I don't think that should be a problem in my Asp.

And so I fly to Alpha Centauri, line my ship up with Hutton Orbital, and begin the dreaded journey. The station is 6,784,404 light seconds, or 0.22 light years, from the system's jump point. A couple of thousand light seconds feels like a lot to me when I'm running trade routes in Elite, so I'm instantly daunted by the distance. But hey, this is the perfect opportunity to catch up on some podcasts.

Get used to this view, it's all you'll see for over an hour.

Twenty minutes pass and, yes, this is really dull. I keep zoning out, but it doesn't really matter because, so far, I haven't even had to nudge my Asp to keep it pointed at the station. But there is something quite pleasant about being in the lonely depths of space. Usually when I'm in supercruise there are other ships buzzing around me like flies, but out here there's nothing.

Ten more minutes pass. Then another ten. I start questioning why I'm even doing this in the first place. Is this really a good use of the only life I'll ever have? Eden, the planet Hutton orbits, is still a miniscule glowing speck in the distance. Ten more minutes. Then another. At least in Euro Truck Simulator you have to occasionally brake or indicate or merge into another lane: here it's just watching and waiting, listening to the rumble of your engines, watching stellar dust streak past your windows. It's pretty chill, but not exactly entertaining.

It's an hour before I start to feel like I've actually made any progress. Eden is much more visible now, as is Proxima Centauri, the star it orbits. And my ship occasionally drifts now, which gives me something to do other than stare at the stars. Then, finally, I approach the station, slow down, and drop out of supercruise. It's taken me 1 hour and 33 minutes to reach Hutton Orbital, and I'm genuinely thrilled to see this backwater dump floating in the void.

The moment I finally reached Hutton Orbital.

There are no other players around, sadly. I was hoping to say hello to a fellow pilgrim. I dock at the station and fill my hold with Centauri Mega Gin, another rare commodity, and yes, the fabled Hutton Mug. I take a selfie next to the station, because that's what everyone who comes here does, and I notice that my Asp's paintwork has worn off at the front. That's what spending over an hour in supercruise will do to you, I guess. I decide not to repair the damage, leaving the scuffs and scrapes there as a sort of badge of honour.

I feel slightly hollow as I jump back to my home system. Reaching Hutton Orbital wasn't quite as satisfying as I thought it would be. If it was a little more difficult I might feel more fulfilled. But all I've really done here is manage to not fall asleep for an hour—which I suppose is a kind of achievement when there's nothing to look at except a starry void. I think, ultimately, the idea of going there is much more exciting than actually doing it. And I learned this the hard way.

But I really love that this challenge exists at all. It's always great to see something created by players in a game that is then acknowledged and supported by a developer. I don't think you should rush out and attempt your own Hutton Orbital run, but it's an enjoyably silly (if tedious) way to spend an hour and a bit in Elite's vast galaxy. And if you fill your hold up with those rare commodities, you could make some decent money for your efforts. Me, I'm just happy to have gotten here in one piece and returned home with a novelty mug.

The obligatory Hutton Orbital selfie.

Elite Dangerous - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jay Castello)

The next update for vast space simulator Elite Dangerous should make things a bit easier for land-lubbers who want to get their space legs for the first time. A new zone for beginners, simpler early missions, and new ship modules to automate docking and entering orbit are all among the slate of changes lined up for release on Tuesday, April 23rd.

(more…)

Elite Dangerous

Frontier Developments has shared more details of Elite Dangerous' next significant update, which is primarily focussed on delivering a more welcoming experience for beginner players, and due to launch on Tuesday, April 23rd.

Imaginatively titled the April Update, Frontier's latest content drop introduces a new Beginner's Zone, where newcomers are free to take flight and familiarise themselves with Elite Dangerous' idiosyncrasies without fear of attack from PvP-frenzied pros. New players will have access to the area - alongside a selection of easy, introductory missions and reduced re-buy costs - until they earn their first Combat, Trade, or Exploration rank.

Additionally, there are two new ship modules available to all players, both designed to assist with some of Elite's trickier flight manoeuvres. The new Advanced Docking Computer, for example, not only automatically lands a player's ship at a station, it'll undock too. Gone will be the days in which you carefully navigate a station's access slot, only to be greeted by a fellow Commander ricocheting dramatically off a nearby wall.

Read more

Elite Dangerous - BrettC Frontier


Greetings Commanders,

We’re very pleased to announce that the next update for Elite Dangerous, the April Update, will release on... Tuesday 23 April 2019!

As mentioned in the beginning of March, this year's initial updates will focus on introducing quality of life improvements and improving the welcoming experience for beginners. This update brings with it two new modules to help get you out there, engaging in and exploring all that there is to discover - as well as ensure that you're able to access in-game information and training from the seat of your cockpit!


Read below for all of the details:


Beginner's Zone


A new collection of systems has been added for newly-created Commanders, and can only be accessed by pilots until they earn their first Elite rank. In addition, the authorities here will provide simpler missions that even the smallest of Sidewinders can complete.

Across the galaxy, new Commanders will also have a reduced rebuy until they gain their first Combat, Trade or Exploration rank, a step in the path towards greatness!


New Modules


    Advanced Docking Computer
    We're adding an upgraded version of the original Docking Computer, a module designed to allow Commanders to relax, let go of their flight sticks and automatically dock in stations to the serene strings of Johann Strauss II.The Advanced Docking Computer will not only allow you to dock, but also allow you to automatically undock from a station without anxiously worrying about getting stuck inside the mail slot. Let's face it, it will also help with those embarrassing Type-10 spoiler moments!This module will also come as standard in all newly-purchased small ships. If you're starting up a new account, you will find the Advanced Docking Computer in your ship from the get-go - making it easier for you to embark and disembark from your favourite stations without colliding with the walls, landing pads or your fellow Commanders.
    Supercruise Assist
    Available at your nearest starship department store (i.e. Outfitting) comes the new Supercruise Assist module. While in Supercruise, you'll be able to target a destination and activate Supercruise Assist, putting your safety in the reassuring hands of a machine. In this mode, your ship will automatically maintain the correct speed and approach to your target destination, and break out of Supercruise at the optimum time. You'll still have to align with the correct location, but you will no longer have to worry about doing a loop of shame!With the the Supercruise Assist, you will also be able to enter into orbit around a body - allowing you to launch discovery probes and take screenshots without the fear of face-planting the dusty, rocky ground.This module will also come as standard in all newly-purchased ships.


Free module slots for everyone!


With the introduction of these new modules, small ships will be outfitted with two additional size one Optional Internal slots, while medium and large ships will also receive one additional Optional Internal slot. This will automatically and retroactively apply to all relevant ships.


Navigation Panel


In Beyond - Chapter Four, the cockpit was completely revamped, and with the April Update, come even more improvements! The latest area to feel the love is the Navigation Panel where, in places, we have added icons for a tighter, more visually appealing layout.

A new column has been added to this panel, denoting activities in an area, mission targets, plotted routes, Wanted status and if the threat level of some areas is too high. The Navigation popup expands on this information, providing more details about the location, such as faction details, star class, information of resources and more!

Two of these may sound new to you - so allow us to explain!
  • Activities - Every location in the Elite galaxy, offers different activities, be it collecting Combat Bonds in a Combat Zone, or mining asteroids at a Resource Extraction Site. Icons and links to the Pilots' Handbook (see below) have been added to help you easily identify what activities are available at a given location.
  • Threat Level - Threat Level is something that already exists in the game (previously only seen at Unidentified Signal Sources), but this new marker will now appear in all systems. If a location has a threat level too high for your current combat rank, a 'danger' icon will be displayed, warning you that the location might be too dangerous.
Pilot's Handbook


Like the Codex, the Player's Handbook is a treasure trove of information, providing details on the many activities available to you in Elite Dangerous. Whether you're a veteran, or you've only just graduated from flight school, these articles will help you discover what opportunities are out there - and what is required to get involved in them. With links from the cockpit straight to the Pilot's Handbook, sourcing information is easier than ever before!


Trading Screen Improvements


When you're an interstellar trader, every minute is a potential sale... so to help you avoid being badgered by a strange man trying to sell you the 'deal of a lifetime' (500 tonnes of bio-waste is not always a good deal, by the way!), a number of improvements have been made to the user interface of the Commodities Market.

You will find two panels in the Commodities Market, Buy and Sell. Each new panel will provide you with important information:
  • Commodities relevant to any active missions you're currently undertaking
  • Icons that provide feedback of profits and supplies.
  • Trade data on nearby local systems per commodity
  • Buy and sell commodities pop-up with much more info than before - helpful even to the seasoned trader!
  • Select markets or goods and view their trade data in the Galaxy Map.
All these improvements have been introduced to make the Commodities Market easier to understand at a glance, ensuring every Commander can become a wolf of the interstellar Wall Street.


Interstellar Initiatives


Our name for the previously announced 'Community Events'. These are series of in-game events that play out over the course of around a month. Each one features several phases that will alter as the narrative progresses, and may end with lasting effects on the galaxy. We'll be delving deeper into these in just a couple of weeks.


...and there's more!

  • Revamped main menu layout, including featuring GalNet news and other important information.
  • Training Missions and Challenge Scenarios will now be accessible via the cockpit, allowing you to brush up your skills right from the seat of your ship.
  • Loading screen tips.
  • Bug fixes.
So there you have it, a brief take on some of the features coming in the next update.

Join us on Thursday 18 April (at 19:00 UTC) for a content reveal livestream, where Executive Producer Adam Woods will be showcasing how all of this looks in-game!

Until then, please feel free to share your thoughts and feedback with us below.

See you in the black, Commander!
Elite Dangerous - BrettC Frontier
Hello all,

We are now excited to launch our new Issue Tracker! The Issue Tracker replaces our Bug Reporting forums and can be accessed here:

https://issues.frontierstore.net/

To report a bug, simply log in with your regular Frontier account and click 'Submit Report'. You'll then be given all the steps you need to let us know about any issues you have experienced.

On this site you can:
  • Submit issues
  • Follow the status of your reports
  • See which issues have been reported by others
  • Vote on which issues matter most to you
  • Search for specific reports
  • Help contribute towards existing issues

With the launch of our new Issue Tracker the Bug Reporting forums will now be archived and all reports will now use the Issue Tracker.

Thank you for all your support so far and for helping raise awareness of the issues that are affecting your gameplay!
Elite Dangerous - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Corey Milne)

It has been two months since I set off to reach the centre of the galaxy. I m happy to report that I made it. For those not following my adventures, I m part of the Distant Worlds 2 expedition, a ragtag group of Elite Dangerous explorers who have set out to cross the galaxy and construct a new space station at its core, a safe haven for all those pilots who find themselves far from home. After innumerable jumps, my ship, the Roisin Dubh, has finally docked within the metal confines of that new station, the Explorer s Anchorage. It s still not wholly assembled, but I imagine it has that new car smell. The Tesco Gold coffee I was drinking in my last report has since been jettisoned out the airlock (I need to make my trips to the bins exciting somehow). So I treated myself to some proper ground coffee to celebrate my arrival at Sagittarius A*, the supermassive black hole in the centre of our galaxy, and was feeling pretty good about myself.

I was arrested shortly afterwards, but I ll get to that.

(more…)

Elite Dangerous - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alice O'Connor)

Frontier Developments, the makers of Elite Dangerous and Jurassic World Evolution, have big news. The news is so big they can’t tell us how big it is. Frontier have, they proudly announced today, “signed a major global IP licence to develop and publish a future game.” That’s right: a major, global, intellectual property licence. Which one? Oh don’t worry about that. To make what game? Please, think bigger, you can’t see the forest for the trees. A major global IP licence. Just think…! I have some pretty good ideas what it might be.

(more…)

Elite Dangerous

Elite Dangerous fans have a long wait ahead for the space sim's next "major milestone" update, with Frontier Developments estimating that it won't be ready until the latter half of 2020.

Since its release in 2014, Elite Dangerous has received two large-scale content expansions, presented as multi-part seasons. The first, Horizons, introduced the likes of planetary landings, ship-launched fighters, and multi-crew co-op, while the latest season, 2018's Beyond, focussed mainly on quality of life improvements and core gameplay overhauls.

Elite Dangerous' next significant expansion was first discussed last August, when Frontier revealed that it had begun work on the space sim's "next major era". In a new post detailing its future plans, the developer calls this project, "a defining moment in the history of the game" and "our biggest update yet". It has not, however, given any indication of what it might include - although fans remain ever hopeful to finally see atmospheric landings and space legs.

Read more

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