The once-ubiquitous space simulator genre starting to see a modern-day resurgence. While the PC gaming space used to be rife with outer space adventure titles like Freelancer and Tie Fighter, the games fell out of favor in the late 90’s, when games like Diablo and Doom offered quick bursts of action without a space simulators’ steep learning curve.
That’s changing, thanks to Kickstarter. There’s Star Citizen, of course, which has amassaed over $73 million in revenue (so far), making it the biggest crowdfunded project of all time. There’s also Elite: Dangerous, the fourth entry in the Elite series, and the first since 1995. When publishers refused to back an Elite sequel, designer David Braben turned to the crowdfunding platform, raising £1.25 million. Elite: Dangerous’ budget eventually rose beyond £8 million; the game finally launched in December, 2014 for Windows PC.
Now, as announced at GDC 2015, Elite: Dangerous is coming to Microsoft’s Xbox One. Soon, Xbox One owners will be able to explore Elite: Dangerous‘ massive galaxy (a one-to-one scale replica of the real-life Milky Way), gathering funds and buying upgrades by engaging in legal activities like trading, or more unsavory acts like piracy and bounty-hunting. The Xbox One edition of Elite: Dangerous doesn’t have a definite release date, although Microsoft promises that the game will come sometime in 2015, most likely this summer.
Like the upcoming PlayStation 4 exclusive No Man’s Sky, Elite: Dangerous takes place in a persistent online universe, filled with procedurally-generated worlds; unlike No Man’s Sky, social interaction is a big part of Elite: Dangerous’ gameplay, and players are encouraged to either cooperate or to advance at the expense of others.
Even better, Elite: Dangerous’ Xbox One release marks the beginning of Microsoft’s cross-buy program. Anyone who buys Elite: Dangerous for either Xbox One or Windows 10 will have access to the game on all applicable Microsoft platforms, free of charge. That’s good news for gamers who want to play Elite on their Xbox One, but are interested in trying the game’s lauded Oculus Rift integration as well.
Elite‘s move to consoles isn’t entirely surprising. In the past, Braben said that developer Frontier Developments would be “stupid” to not look at releasing the game on Xbox One and PlayStation 4. For the time being, however, Elite: Dangerous sounds like it’s an Xbox One exclusive; PlayStation 4 owners will either have to wait for No Man’s Sky to hit this fall, or venture to the PC-side of things to get their space exploration fix.
Source: Frontier Developments