Getting My FSD Cherry Popped: Remember Your First Time?

I’ll go ahead and share my story-

I was absolutely FLOORED.

There I was, sitting at the hotel desk at 3:30am. Pitch black outside and all was silent. Nobody had called all night and I’d spent an hour and a half or so just sort of figuring out how to map controls on my ship, takeoff and landing procedures- this was all back before we had flight assist modules, mind you.

I found my target, locked in, and pressed the button. The countdown started and I can remember this giddy childlike feeling of glee, like back when I started a countdown with my dad to launch a model rocket.

The AI stated ”engage” and I had an instant rush of dopamine. how can there be a game so perfect? I thought to myself, not knowing even half of half of half of what was in store.

The jump launched and I looked around, bewildered at hyperspace. My cherry had just been popped, and I was on my way to becoming an honest-to-God CMDR.

Here’s where the story gets interesting.

So I’m sitting there, right? Completely aghast that such a game had existed for so long without my knowing. I’m planning the camera around the cockpit, taking in the modules and the UI and the canopy and my hands on the controls and… just everything. I was so lost and bewildered that I kind of just forgot I was in the process of going somewhere.

This is where Elite’s gruff ‘n tuff school of hard knocks hit me real hard for the first time.


That sensation. That pinprick of light expanding in a fraction of a second to fill my viewport. I think it literally blew me back against my office chair. I didn’t know what was happening. But I knew I loved it.

I failed to notice the big red letters telling me to SLOW DOWN and I casually drifted into the gravitational pull of a massive orange star.

Frantically I’m trying to figure what’s gone wrong. What’s this button do? Why the alarms? Emergency FSD Stop? What? What’s that? What is this? Why?

Smoke began to rise from my control panels and I slumped back on my chair in defeat. I came here unprepared- and Elite was about to teach me why that was a very bad idea.

The alarms seemed to get louder as I regained a fight to survive and began pressing buttons randomly- but it was too late. I could bought but look on as my canopy began to fracture before my very eyes.

“No…” I remember whispering under my breath.

Oh yes. said Elite as my entire starship exploded, leaving my camera stationary in space to watch the wreckage of my beloved Sidewinder go floating into the hellish inferno below.

Now, I’ve played Dark Souls. I know what brutal is. But this was so far beyond the brutality I’ve witnessed in other games. And what’s better? I frackin’ loved it.

I jumped up out of my chair, grasping my head and mouthing a crazed happy “OOOOOOHHHH” like a kid that just witnessed the school bully get punched out at recess. This was a turning point for me. This was the moment I knew I’d always love Elite: Dangerous.

So now we know my story. How was it for you?


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