Elite: Dangerous isn’t the sort of game that does things quickly. While the sheer variety of gameplay available to its players makes sure they’re not likely to complain of boredom any time soon, developer Frontier Developments has been extraordinarily patient with the rollout of what might be Elite: Dangerous‘ most exciting addition – aliens. Discovered nearly a year ago now, the sudden arrival of the aliens in Elite: Dangerous shocked players and spawned an erratic array of theories about what their purpose might be.
The aliens were, at least to start, quite shy, appearing suddenly and locking players out of the controls for their ship before scanning them and departing peacefully. That’s changed in the past few days, however, as reports have begun to emerge suggesting the aliens in Elite: Dangerous – called Thargoids – are now hostile, and will attack players after they have scanned them, incinerating them into stardust with an army of drones.
The above video documents the entire exchange between a Thargoid ship and a YouTube channel called Sapphire’s Hideout. In it, the Thargoid ship behaves as players would usually expect initially, drifting away after the scan, before exhibiting new, violent behavior. The player’s shields are quickly depleted and they are killed, despite never showing hostility toward the Thargoid ship.
The slow, sinister debut of the Thargoid race has been something special from the Elite: Dangerous team, and it’s yet more evidence that the game deserves a place in the discussion of the best space exploration games of all time. Players are now scrambling to figure out whether or not they are capable of defeating a Thargoid ship in a dogfight, and the community’s split between those calling for peace and understanding and those ready to wage war against the Thargoids mirrors real-world politics all too well.
Whatever happens in the fight between humanity and the Thargoids in Elite: Dangerous, however, it has been presented in such compelling fashion that the entire gaming world – not just the denizens of Frontier Developments’ beautiful universe – is taking note. Good luck out there, Elite: Dangerous players!
Elite: Dangerous is available now for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.