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Elite: Dangerous spotlights improvements coming in this year’s biggest update

Visual enhancements and better scanning technology greet spacefarers Oct. 30

Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

The makers of Elite: Dangerous last night showed off scads of new features players can expect from the last major update to the spaceflight game planned for this year.

Mapping and exploration will get new enhancements thanks to upgraded star system and planetary scanning capabilities, and commanders will enjoy streamlined interfaces in their cockpit and more striking visuals in the space beyond.

Elite Dangerous: Beyond — Chapter Four comes to the game Oct. 30 as a beta, with a full launch later. Frontier Developments charted the improvements in a livestream yesterday afternoon (above) stretching more than an hour. Here are the high points:

Upgraded scanning tools allow pilots to find everything in a system without having to fly into it. This is thanks to probes that commanders may fire toward the planet to map it, with gameplay rewarding players for accurate probe deployment and being the first to scan a new body.

• “The Codex” will be introduced for pilots to give them a way to track personal progress while also keeping up with events in the persistent universe of Elite:Dangerous. The Codex is meant to encourage exploration; rumored locations can be investigated by any commander, and once discovered, will be updated in The Codex for all other players to see.

The Codex, coming to commanders’ systems panels in Elite: Dangerous’ next update.
Frontier Developments

• Visually, Elite: Dangerous players will notice brighter stars and deeper blacks in space. Volumetric fog effects and, yes, those luxurious god-rays will enhance the views as commanders cruise through nebulae.

Elite: Dangerous is available on PlayStation 4, Windows PC and Xbox One. Exploration is a major component of the game and its community, as it’s set within a realistic model of the Milky Way galaxy.

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