CruiseSo, I’ve got a sort of love/hate relationship with Elite Dangerous. Didn’t feel like kickstarting it since it looked more like a multiplayer space shooter than the modern successor to FE2/FFE, was still glad it got funded, then watched the gorgeous looking beta, and soothed by the promised offline-mode, got in at premium beta level. Needless to say, the offline mode canning debacle came up as a major bummer to me. I was hoping to play my game in my little pocket universe, by my rules. Not going to happen now.

It took me a while to motivate myself to try it out after launch, and between the unfinished nature of the game (no planetary landings, background simulation so bad that events were injected manually) and the necessary multiplayer gaming choices (arcade model of flight and combat, interstellar travel in all of 5 minutes, no external camera for screenshots), it just didn’t grab me, and two weeks later, I logged out for what turned out to be over 6 months.

Two weeks ago, with the announcement that the Horizons expansion would start implementing planetary landings, I felt like giving it another go. This time round, with no more expectations, it went better. With sort of a mind to try out mining, I started trading rare commodities to equip a Cobra. During those trips, i’d regularly check the outfitting screens for parts. And on those screens, I was regularly confronted to the Advanced Discovery Scanner and Detailed Surface Scanners. One thing leading to another, I started thinking of forgetting about mining in favour of exploration, which used to be a favourite past-time of mine in FE2/FFE. A few more trading trips, and my mind was made: I’d equip the Cobra for exploration and leave settled space for a while. A good while. The destination, as unoriginal as it may be, would be Sagittarius A*, the black hole at the centre of our galaxy, 25k light-years away. Nothing else than me, my ship and the stars…

Final check of installed systems.

Final check of installed systems.

No weapons to save on weight, one heatsink launcher just in case.

No weapons to save on weight, one heatsink launcher just in case. Note the cute ‘Scout’ explorer rank painted on the nose. It should be getting quite an upgrade if I make it back!

Departing Lave for the galactic core. A 50k light-years round trip. I won't see another Coriolis station for a little while.

Departing Lave for the galactic core. A 50k light-years round trip. I won’t see another Coriolis station for a little while.

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