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'Elite Dangerous: Horizons' Beta Lands On PC

Four months after its initial announcement, Frontier Developments can finally give users a taste of what’s coming over the course of the next few months. Today, the beta for Elite Dangerous: Horizons is out on the PC.

Horizons is the team’s first big expansion since the release of the game. For now, beta players will be able to try out planetary landings, a feature that was heavily touted since the reveal of the expansion at Gamescom. In addition to landing on the galaxy’s vast number of planets, additional features are available on the surface, such as docking ports, planet-based missions, and the surface recon vehicle.

When the final version of Horizons is released, there will be more features included throughout 2016. This includes looting and crafting mechanics, multi-crew support on certain ships, character customization, and ship-launched fighters. This is all on top of another layer of extra content that will see the addition of more ships, more missions, and new maps for the competitive CQC mode.

The beta launch was supposed to arrive a week earlier, but there were a few issues, the biggest of which was the switch to a 64-bit client for the expansion. If you own the base game, you can still play with a 32-bit version, but the upgrade to Horizons means that you will need to upgrade to the 64-bit client.

If you want to get in on the action now, the beta (and full access to the rest of Horizons new features as they come out) will cost you $74.99. If you’re willing to wait a few more weeks, then you can pre-order the final version of the expansion now for $59.99.

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Rexly Peñaflorida II is a Contributor at Tom’s Hardware. He writes news on tech and hardware, but mostly focuses on gaming news. As a Chicagoan, he believes that deep dish pizza is real pizza and ketchup should never be on hot dogs. Ever. Also, Portillo’s is amazing.

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  • Saljen
    I remember when expansions to a game didn't cost as much as the whole game originally did. And when beta access was free because you're helping the company test their unfinished code, not getting access to a finished product.
    Reply
  • Traciatim
    So, does this actually make it a fun game that you can actually influence things in or is it still just a playable tech demo?
    Reply
  • therealduckofdeath
    I remember when expansions to a game didn't cost as much as the whole game originally did. And when beta access was free because you're helping the company test their unfinished code, not getting access to a finished product.
    The expansion is discounted by 25% if you own the current season, Saljen.
    They are of course using paid betas as an extra way to generate revenue and also to limit the number of players to the ones really interested in the game. Having a draw would mean a lot of people signing up for a beta potentially would never even install it.

    I remember when the internet wasn't full of grumpy old men whining about absolutely everything. :D
    Reply
  • therealduckofdeath
    So, does this actually make it a fun game that you can actually influence things in or is it still just a playable tech demo?
    Elite: Dangerous takes a bit of research and brains to figure out how to influence powers efficiently, that has been possible since day one.
    Reply
  • therealduckofdeath
    This game just went leagues further ahead of any other space sim out there. Landing on planets finally lets you get a better grasp of how big the star systems and galaxy is, even how big the space ships themselves are.
    Yes, it's not holding your hand telling you what to do every second, but that's what's so great about it. Something really unique in this console port days where you have one path, where you're insta-killed if you stray off the scripted path and everything has to be done with a specific right-left-right-left-A-B button combo shown on screen. The way Elite works, I keep finding new things to do, even though I've spent over a thousand of hours playing it already. \o/
    Reply
  • therealduckofdeath
    This comment system really, really sucks... Sent back and forth between .com and .co.uk and no simple way to fix a typo............. :P
    Reply
  • tiagoluz8
    This comment system really, really sucks... Sent back and forth between .com and .co.uk and no simple way to fix a typo............. :P

    Yeah! they should use Disqus like everyone else.
    Reply
  • ErikVinoya
    They are of course using paid betas as an extra way to generate revenue and also to limit the number of players to the ones really interested in the game. Having a draw would mean a lot of people signing up for a beta potentially would never even install it.

    I remember when the internet wasn't full of grumpy old men whining about absolutely everything. :D

    I remember the time when software companies pay/hire QA testers to test their products and not the other way around. It's because people tolerate this that these companies see this as an extra way to milk money.
    Reply
  • therealduckofdeath
    I remember the time when software companies pay/hire QA testers to test their products and not the other way around. It's because people tolerate this that these companies see this as an extra way to milk money.

    Now you're comparing apples with pears. There's always been public betas.
    Reply
  • ErikVinoya
    And that is a valid reason for a paid closed beta? A beta test is a test whether it is public or private, it does not make sense why you would ask people to pay you to test your work for bugs
    Reply