Last week, Frontier Developments kicked off the beta phase of Elite Dangerous 2.0, aka Elite Dangerous Horizons. However, the team still wasn’t willing to announce a release date for the finished version, saying only that it will arrive before the end of the year. But after two weeks in beta, the first expansion for Elite Dangerous officially comes out on December 15.
Aside from the official announcement, company founder and CEO David Braben also brought up the announcement on the game’s forums. He said that the team has been working hard on the expansion’s development, as another update (which Braben called “Beta 5”) is on its way to those who have been playing the beta for the past week. It seems like most of the work has been focused on ensuring compatibility between the base game and expansion, as the goal was to keep all players in the same universe whether they had the expansion or not.
The beta was initially delayed for a week as the team worked on the transition from a 32- to 64-bit client for the game, so if you do plan on picking up the expansion, note that a 64-bit OS is required.
When it comes out next week, only the planetary landings feature will be available from the expansion. The expansion allows pilots to land on many planets throughout the galaxy. However, more features are planned for Horizons, including multi-crew ships, new ships, and looting and crafting mechanics, but those are coming in the next few months. As a result, Horizons will still be considered an Early Access expansion.
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.