Elite: Dangerous Newsletter #84 - From Frontier Developments
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Hello, Commander,
Welcome to Elite: Dangerous Newsletter #84.

This week we've been crunching numbers. Read on for a deep dive into the latest stats from the Elite: Dangerous galaxy, from the most popular ship to a truly amazing average play time across the community.

Meanwhile, we're preparing to launch CQC's first test on Xbox One and we're almost in place to make a colossal announcement at Gamescom in two weeks' time. Until then, we have an early peek at the new Imperial Eagle, Mike Brookes' Developer Update featuring news on player-generated Powerplay factions and all the newsletter regulars.

As always, you can hear the latest news and updates directly from the development team on our
 ForumsTwitterFacebook, Community homepage and right here in the newsletter every week, and we're always eager to hear your feedback. Have a great weekend!

Contents This Week

Stats from the Elite: Dangerous Galaxy

This week we're digging deep into our galaxy and taking a look at how Elite: Dangerous players like to play.

We've crunched the numbers and discovered that t
he average play time across ALL Elite: Dangerous players in our community on PC, Mac (from the Frontier Store and Steam) and on Xbox One is a massive 64 hours. It's a remarkable figure, and we want to thank you for spending so much time in our galaxy

We also learned just over 1,200 players have spent more than 1,000 total hours in the galaxy each since launch. That's an average of four and a half hours every day from our most dedicated players since December 16.

And all that time spent adds up to a lot of exploration. So far an incredible 11.3 million systems have been explored by players. At the current rate of play the Elite: Dangerous community will have charted the galaxy's 400 billion star systems in 23,417 years. We'll be finished by the year 25,432, so here's hoping 255th century computers are PC compatible.

Just in case, remember: the more people who join us out there, the faster we'll get the job done!
The galaxy's most popular ship in action
Looking at ships, 27 percent fly the starting Sidewinder with various loadouts, but the most popular ship players choose to buy is the Cobra Mk. III, with 19 percent of players at the controls.

They're followed by the Viper (nine percent)
, Vulture (eight percent), Asp (seven percent) and Eagle (four percent), with the Eagle getting a little boost from the pre-order exclusive Mercenary Edition offering an Eagle for free.

At the other end, just 0.016 percent of players fly the unlovable Orca, making it the least popular ship in the galaxy.

Finally, in Powerplay players are overwhelmingly backing Zachary Hudson. 29 percent of players back Hudson, with just two percent backing Pranav Antal at the opposite end of the spectrum. 

And as always, YOU can turn the tide in the Elite: Dangerous galaxy. Hit our forums and let us know if you're brave enough to back Antal from the cockpit of an Orca.

Peek Of The Week

A look at the sleek Imperial Eagle. Imperial engineers have transformed the Eagle into a war machine, with a medium central hardpoint and faster straight line speed.
From the desk of Executive Producer Michael Brookes.

Hi everyone,

In this week's dev update I'm going to follow up on the player supported minor factions and some changes coming to the background sim as part of the CQC update (1.4).

As part of Powerplay we stated that it would be possible for a minor faction in game to become a power. We've put together a process for how that will happen. It all starts with the minor faction, so in the next few weeks player groups can submit to add a minor faction to the game that will be used to represent that group in game. This registration process will be handled by the wonderful community team and they will gather the required information for adding the minor faction to the game. This will include the name of the faction, it's starting location, and type of government. Please note that to make things easier to manage there should only be one point of contact with each group. Zac and his team have already been in contact with many of the player groups so this will fold into his work there. This process will continue for the foreseeable future, so new player groups can form and stake their place in the game.

Now we know that some player groups have already supported specific minor factions already, so there will be a time limited period for player groups to register prior claims.

For the CQC update we're looking at making a few changes to the background simulation. One commonly raised issue is that minor factions don't always enter conflict states such as war, civil war and elections. This occurs when the other minor faction is in a state that cannot be overridden, so we are changing the rule so that conflict states can immediately override other states so that conflicts can be entered and completed. We'll also reduce the recovery periods so states can repeat more quickly. Expansion in particular will receive a substantial reduction in the recovery period.

The displayed information will receive some changes so that you know which minor faction is in conflict with whom. You will also see if minor faction is in a recovery period for a particular state. This communication aspect is certainly something we want to do more with beyond the CQC release.

Under the hood we'll also implement better population scaling so trying to influence a giga sized population is more difficult than a colony of thousands. This also allows for larger populations being more stable.

Periodically (or whenever we need to add a new player power) we'll take the top minor factions and they will duke it out to see which one will get the opportunity to become a power. We'll use combinations of community goals to determine the final winner. We're anticipating that the first run of this process will be early next year, but may well happen sooner depending on how the current powers play out.

The winning minor faction can then emerge, if they're not positioned within existing powers then they are created. If they are positioned within an existing power then this is more difficult and they will need to clear sufficient space to emerge. We're looking at various mechanism for minor factions to be able to tackle powers directly and these wouldn't be limited to just an emerging power. We'll reveal more details as we approach this phase.

Comms Chatter

Ran out of fuel? Stranded with no signs of help nearby? The Fuel Rats have you covered. Head over to their website at and let them know you need a rescue!
CMDR Sagrell had food on their mind! We say it’s a potato coloured planet… however, his term of the “cookie dough planet” might win us over when paired with Bacon City.
In September, Elite: Dangerous author David Hughes will be streaming Elite: Dangerous for Marie Curie Cancer Care. He's also shaving his hair and beard. Back him at his JustGiving page.
And finally, hit the community-created for the latest Powerplay ststus updates. We think it's a great site.
The Cerberus Plague has reached Shepherd Hub in the Bastes System, Yegorov Station in the Maheou Ti system, Roddenberry Gateway in the Ochoeng system, Hart Station in the Bast system, Hoard Orbital in the Una system and Cantor Terminal in the Santjalan system. So far a cure hasn’t been found for this disease despite the continuing work of Carl Simmons, the Chief Medical Officer of Newton Dock, and medical teams in the surrounding systems. Hospitals and care facilities in these systems are already overloaded as the number of infected people rapidly rises. Any pilots in the region are being called upon to help deliver medical aid to the affected starports.

Following the recent expansion by Emperor's Grace into an Imperial system, a suitable industrial location for the production of advanced technology and weapons has been identified. It is deep within Imperial space and protected by forces loyal to Emperor's Grace. The unnamed system presently has production facilities for both Battle Weapons and Personal Weapons. The announcement was immediately overshadowed by the galaxy wide announcement that the wedding of Emperor Hengist Duval and Florence Lavigny was to proceed as soon as possible.

The brewer responsible for the consignment of Beer delivered to the Imperial celebrations sadly died the evening of the announcement, having fallen into a vat of malt, allegedly not long after a number of guests complained about the consistency of the beer. An agricultural system is therefore being considered as a potential location to produce mead in Emperor's Grace territory and additional beehives are to be located on the planet's surface.

In scenes reminiscent of January, dignitaries and guests from the farthest reaches of the Empire have started arriving on Capitol. Since the Emperor’s recovery, there has been a marked improvement in the mood of the citizenry as they see this as an end to the uncertainty over the past several months. In a move well received by the populace, Chancellor Anders Blaine has declared that the wedding day will be a public holiday so that all may celebrate along with the Emperor and his family.
That’s it for Newsletter #84. As always, if there's anything in particular that you’d like to hear more about, or if you'd like to ask a question, then please contact us at

Click for the latest Game Manual, Quickstart Guide and Pilot Training Videos. Visit our Support team here and read our previous newsletters here.

Until next time, fly safe and Right On, Commander.

The Frontier Team
Jobs at Frontier
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