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Elite: Dangerous Newsletter #67 - From Frontier Developments
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Greetings, Commander,
 
This week we’re preparing for the Elite: Dangerous Mac beta. The beta is planned for March 31, and it will be available to any backers with Beta access.

Details are below, where you’ll also find another look at the Imperial Courier’s development, a massive Comms Chatter featuring an epic exploration run, and Frontier's CEO David Braben announcing the winners of our Race To Elite competition. What does it take to be the galaxy’s number one pilot?


As always, hit our Forums, Twitter and Facebook for the latest updates from Elite: Dangerous’ galaxy, and stick with us for what’s new this week.

Contents This Week

Mac Beta

 
Back in December 2012 we set an Apple Mac version of Elite: Dangerous as one of our Kickstarter stretch goals. With the help of our backers we hit the target, and we're pleased to announce the new Mac beta will be available on March 31.

Backers with beta access will be able to download a new Mac launcher from the EliteDangerous.com store. We’ll provide details when the build is available, along with a dedicated Mac beta discussion forum and bug reporting page.
We’re still some way from pinning down a minimum spec because just like the PC beta you’ll find the benchmark will change as we move into the final months of development. For now, we recommend the following for the beta test, based on our own development machines:
  • 3.4GHz quad-core Intel Core i5
  • 8GB memory
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 775M with 2GB video memory / AMD Radeon R9 M290X with 2GB video memory
  • Mac OS 10.10.x (10.10.03 recommended)
Those specifications match a 2015 27-inch iMac. Optimisation and polish will see Elite: Dangerous playable on a variety of machines, and we’re aiming to make it playable by as many players as possible.
 
We’re also excited to confirm that Mac players will connect to the same galaxy state and gameplay sessions as PC players. We won’t be able to test crossplay during the beta, but there will be an equivalent PC beta available soon for PC players who want to fly alongside Mac pilots in the beta test galaxy.
 
We’ll have more to report next week.

Newsletter Peek Of The Week

Senior Artist Viktor Svensson's work on the Imperial Courier. We’ll talk about the design process in an upcoming newsletter.

Race To Elite

Since 1984, players have aspired to be called Elite. In 1984 only the greatest combat pilots were known by the prestigious title. Today in Elite: Dangerous, Elite status is awarded as recognition for total mastery in combat, trading or exploration, with the best of the best aspiring to become Elite in all three.

For some, it became a race. When Elite: Dangerous launched on December 16, Frontier offered a £1,000 cash bounty to the first players to make Elite in Trading, Exploration and Combat, and a £10,000 prize for the first player to make it to Triple Elite.

Just over three months later, we have our winners. We'll hand over to Frontier CEO and Elite co-creator David Braben to announce who won, with some stats on the marathon play sessions that made four players the first of the Elite.

Some You Win, Some You Lughs


The ownership of Lugh has been hotly contested in the last three months. The Crimson State Group, a player-created faction, poured their efforts into removing the Federation from the war-torn system, but this last week they were given the chance to change the future of the system forever.

After President Halsey declared war on the faction, a number of competing Community Goals became available in Lugh – the first time duelling Community Goals have been used to settle a dispute
– and actions from players will dictate the system's future.

Commanders are
asked to hand in Combat Bonds, awarded for combat kills, at Balandin Gateway on behalf of the Crimson State Group if they wish to support an independent Lugh, and Hartsfield Market on behalf of the Federation if they oppose the breakaway state. 

A trade goal has also been set in place, with Federation supporters asked to deliver weapon commodities to Qureshi Enterprise in Khaka, and Crimson State Group supporters asked to deliver weapons to Balandin Gateway.

If one side completes their Community Goal first, the other will lose, and that side’s war effort will be drastically affected. We're expecting a winner early next week; until then, the entire system is chaos with combat pilots racking up kills on both sides and desperate traders making blockade runs.

Jump in this weekend to make your mark on the galaxy.

Comms Chatter

Fangs is a Noir-inspired comic strip that uses in-game Elite: Dangerous screenshots, and a little bit of clever Photoshop editing, to create a cool and moody short story.
This video of the Elite Racers: Altair Race Day is amazing. Get involved in the next race by heading to the Elite Racers' subreddit. Thanks to A Wintery Guy for posting the video.
Last week we asked you to send in your Wings screenshots using the debug camera, and you responded with galactic levels of gusto. You can see some of our favourites below.

Darious Torkalar
Oh Heck
Richard Adleta
Take a look at the route CMDR Maron Blake took on his 51-day expedition via Sagittarius A*. Blake earned over 145 million credits for the planets and bodies he scanned on his trip, while visiting an astounding 4,300 systems. 
And finally, Kate Russell, Kerrash, and Firey Toad are just three of the eight commanders meeting in Elite: Dangerous at 8PM GMT tonight to take part in a unique multi-stream event. Splitting into two wings, the eight pilots will be streaming their different perspectives live on Twitch, so you can switch between channels to see the action from different angles and with different commentary.

See Kate Russell's forum post for Twitch links and discussion about the event.
In a brief written statement submitted to GalNet news, Commander Virgil Kyle, of the exploration-fitted Asp, Spirit of Indianapolis, claimed to have been the first to visit what he called Sol's ‘true North Star’. "Wregoe TV-L C24-0 is over 1,200 light-years north of Sol's position in the galactic plane, and less than a light-year from her position otherwise," he explained. "Due to the jump distances involved, the system can only be visited by Asps and Anacondas fitted to achieve near-maximum jump ranges."

Lady Kahina Tijani Loren's unofficial entourage began a tour of the outer gas giants in the Sol system. Hundreds of privately owned Federation-registered vessels turned out to greet the Senator, in lieu of an official welcome, as she continued her passage through the Sol system despite continued apathy from officials.

Chancellor Blaine made a rare appearance at a Senate meeting in order to address remarks made earlier in the week by Senator Denton Patreus. "It is with regret that I must deny the honourable Senator’s request to access the Emperor’s medical records," he said. As has always been the case, for reasons of national security the Emperor’s medical records are only accessible by the Emperor’s personal physicians. I will continue to act in the Emperor’s stead, according to his will. As for the question of succession, that will be addressed when the situation calls for it and not before." 

The Kappa Fornacis Farmers Union was up to its old tricks again, as news started to come out of the region that Onionhead is once again available in the ports around Panem.
 
That’s it for Newsletter #67. 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 elite-newsletter@frontier.co.uk.

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

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

The Frontier Team
Jobs at Frontier
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Copyright © 2015 Frontier Developments plc, All rights reserved.


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