Odyssey is the next major expansion for Elite Dangerous. You can read my big interview with developer Frontier for the full details (opens in new tab), but the most exciting new feature is being able to leave your ship for the first time and walk on the surface of alien worlds. And if you're the first person to land on a planet, your name will forever be etched in space history as the commander who discovered it.
But what if you and another pilot happen to land on a planet at the same time? This is one of several questions answered by Frontier in a new Q&A (opens in new tab). "In the same way that Buzz Aldrin made way for Neil Armstrong to be the first man on the Moon, the control to disembark is for an individual commander and there will always be someone first down the ladder," says Frontier. "This accolade will not be shared between commanders."
So the person credited for the first footfall will be the first person to leave their ship and place their boot on the surface. If you're flying with a friend, you'll have to work it out between yourselves who gets the credit.
The Q&A also revealed a few other interesting details.
- Your ability to disembark from your ship will be determined by the survivability of the environment. Temperature and gravity will be factors in this, and if a planet is really rough, you won't be able to leave your ship at all.
- You won't be able to claim every planet in the galaxy. When Elite is set, humans have been exploring space for over a thousand years, so in populated systems first footfall will already be claimed on a lot of worlds.
- The number of landable planets in Odyssey will be in the billions, and the expansion will have 20% more of them than the base game.
- Frontier's anti-cheat team will be monitoring the game to make sure no one claims first footfall on a planet "by illegitimate means."
Elite Dangerous: Odyssey is due for release in spring this year. It costs $40/£30 and you can pre-order (opens in new tab) it now on Steam. That's a lot of money for an expansion, but Odyssey is the most dramatic upgrade to Elite yet—and not just because of the planetary landings. You'll also be able to explore space stations on foot, interact with other players in social spaces, and shoot people with guns.