Elite: Dangerous 2.3

It's a remarkable thing to learn what you look like. Knowing your appearance gives you character, that's why I've always thought it's important to know what you look like, especially in games. The most recent 2.3 update to Elite: Dangerous: Horizons finally allows you to know what your pilot looks like with a powerful new tool called Holo-Me, which makes it possible to create someone you'd always wanted to be or just to try re-creating your own mug as your virtual pilot. As I've accustomed to doing for a reason or an another lately, I created myself a female pilot for now. If I ever want I can change her later. Holo-Me isn't the only thing Frontier added to Elite though, as the list to the new patch is pretty huge.

Some of the changes are cosmetic like the Holo-Me one is as well as the vanity camera mode, which allows you to snap photos of your ship, which you can finally name by the way, and pilot. There's a ton of bug fixes as well, but I'd guess a plethora of new ones brought by the new features. There are new stations that have been built in asteroids as well as the new breed of super ships, floating somewhere far in space. There's also something new for MMO fans, as you can now have your buddies to be a part of your crew.

One of the 50 preset female faces you can modify to your liking. Holome editor is pretty flexible, even allowing things like different coloured eyes or even changing one or both of them to artificial ones.

At first, I wasn't overly excited about 2.3 updates. It seemed to me to be more about multiplayer than anything else. But then I noticed something funny: after creating myself a face and naming my ship I started to feel more drawn to the game, as now I had more concrete idea of whom I was playing as. Now more than ever my character commander Tom Imt is the space-faring rogue I always intended him to be.

See, before he was a faceless pilot, flying a ship with no name or identifier. He just was an empty slate, who did odd jobs here and there, some legal some not so much. A bit of trading here, a bit of smuggling there, topping it with exploration and even at occasion slave trading. But he really didn't have a personality, not beyond his black helmet. But now he has a face and a named ship that reflects his persona.

Tom Imt has a past that is reflected from his face. Just like many other pilots, he began his career in a small ship, doing all kind of things, including combat, mostly in the form of bounty hunting, but even a couple of assassination jobs here and there. Sometimes things went the wrong way and he lost more than one ship, hence there's a long scar over his left eye and the eye itself has been replaced with an artificial one.

He's not a young man anymore, but more a weathered old space dog, who's seen it all and done most things there's to do in space. But he does have some amount of humour yet, which is manifested by his choice of pilot suit, which is purple in colour as is his helmet which is fully transparent. No black mirror surface for him. The most of his sense of humour comes through from his ships names though, as his Asp Explorer dons the name Belladonna's Asp and his passenger Dolphin is called Dolph Lugger. These two of his ships are only ones named, as he hasn't flown with the rest of his fleet recently.

Commander Tom Imt

And the final point really is, that finally, I've gathered what Tom Imt's goal in the galaxy is: to own every possible ship there is. He's a collector who wants to sit at the helm of any ship, be it a freighter or a fighter, That is his goal, plain and simple and to get there he's ready to bend the law a bit.

The truth is, that I've not seen even a fraction of the additions to 2.3 of Elite. After a small hiatus in playing, I've ended up having fun just flying around in my recently purchased Dolphin, hauling passengers, both legal and illegal, to different locations. There are new locations, like the asteroid bases, I'd like to check out, but for now, ferrying people and exploring the galaxy seems to be what it's all about.

So that's about it for now about Elite Dangerous 2.3. It seems like it has given a new breath of air to the game for me, despite I've not tried things like multicrew yet or seen that much of new things. The world of Elite seems to become more alive by every new major update, I'd just hope that the updates were more frequent.

And bring on the alien invasion already.

At the cockpit of Dolph Lugger, a mighty fine passenger ship