I have played Elite Dangerous on and off for some time now and after getting some upgraded modules from a couple of engineers I finally decided to quit the game after realising that I have seen what the game had to offer for the most part.
The purpose of the post is to share with you what I feel is wrong with the core gameplay of Elite Dangerous and to find out what other players think about the game.
First of all, I want to clarify that I think that Elite Dangerous is unique as a space-flight sim compared to the competition because for the most part, the space-flight mechanics are pretty solid. I come from flight sims like DCS and I was looking for a sim that would let me fly and fight in 6DOF. Elite Dangerous does fill that role and the combat is actually entertaining.
A lot of people compare ED to Star Citizen but having tried SC multiple times through free fly events, it doesn't even come close in terms of space combat immersion. SC's mechanics just feel off. It's like flying a brick in space for some reason. Don't even get me started on the amount of bugs and lack of optimization that plague SC as a whole.
My point is that ED is pretty much a monopoly in terms of space-flight combat and yet, FD managed to waste all that potential for dubious reasons.
Engineers need a ridiculous amount of flying from a point to point b and grinding materials just to get 1 or 2 modules. You get less credits for doing combat missions compared to dull activities like mining or transporting goods, so all of us end up looking up how to cheese the system and get the most expensive ships in a matter of days. The game is called Elite Dangerous, not Entrepreneur's Digest.
I understand that a lot of people like to roleplay as an explorer or transporter or whatever but let's be realistic, most people just want to fight other ships and experiment with different armament options.
At the same time, for some reason, FD felt that the game needed an FPS mode when it was obvious that:
A. The budget for such a niche game would never be enough to properly support and maintain two main game modes.
B. It shifts the focus from what used to be the only proper space-flight sim to a jack all of trades, which is a master of none.
Was FD scared of RSI because they added an FPS mode to SC (which is underwhelming to put it mildly)? Do they have any sense of direction for the game (Star Citizen also has no sense of direction btw)? Why on earth would they greenlight a huge undertaking like space legs combat and not fix what is broken?
In my humble opinion, what the game needs is a proper focus on space combat, easing the grind and adding some more ships and space combat modes to keep us entertained without resorting to mindless grinding of materials. Populate some of the systems so that they don't feel barren or empty. Replace some of the stations with unique "landmarks", instead of making them all look the same. Factions should be actually important, add some space wars between them and make the players invest in something more interesting than the thargoids and pointless powerplay.
All in all, if FD needs more money, I would gladly pay for a dlc or even a subscription if it meant that I would receive some actually engaging content in return. Why is that so hard to grasp for so many gaming companies? A happy customer is a loyal customer.
Lastly, I don't mind that there is no story or anything to immerse you in the world of ED other than the combat or the exploration of the galaxy for the time being, since ED has a fundamentally broken game-loop. Fixing the core gameplay should be their top priority.
So is Elite Dangerous a prime example of wasted potential? What are your thoughts on this?