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Disembark, Commander, and leave your mark on the galaxy in Elite Dangerous: Odyssey. Explore distant worlds on foot and expand the frontier of known space. Be the first to step out onto countless unique planets as you discover land untouched since time began. Elite Dangerous: Odyssey invites you to become a true pioneer.

Elite Dangerous: Odyssey announcement[1]

Elite Dangerous: Odyssey key art

Elite Dangerous: Odyssey is the second paid expansion for Elite Dangerous. Frontier Developments has described it as the biggest update yet and a defining moment in the history of the game.[2] Development of Odyssey started in August 2018, and was officially announced on June 3, 2020.[1]

Odyssey was originally scheduled to release in December 2020 on all platforms, but was delayed to early 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[3] It was then delayed a second time as COVID-19 restrictions in the United Kingdom were renewed. Odyssey finally released on PC on May 19, 2021.[4][5] The Xbox and PlayStation release does not yet have a scheduled date.[6]

Features

Atmospheric landings and on-foot activities

The landmark feature of Odyssey is the addition of the ability to explore planets on foot. This is permitted not only on all non-atmospheric landable planets, but Odyssey also opens planets with tenuous or thin atmospheres for landings for the first time, increasing the number of available landable bodies in the game by over 20%. Landing on planets with tenuous atmospheres requires the new Advanced Planetary Approach Suite module. On Foot activities require a suit to protect the player from the hostile environment, but some planets are so inhospitable that players cannot disembark from their ships even if their ships are able to land.[7][8] In order to disembark from a ship on foot, the player must first land the ship on the ground.[9] A planet's gravity is also a factor during On Foot activities, and can affect the player's movement, jumping, and their thrown grenades.[10]

The first player to set foot on a planet will receive the "First Footfall" credit on the System Map. First Footfall credit can only be claimed on planets in systems with 0 population; inhabited systems have already been explored at some point in the Elite Dangerous universe's 1300-year history of interstellar exploration, and thus First Footfall credit in those systems is already long claimed. Unlike the "First Discovered" and "First Mapped" credits, "First Footfall" credit is recorded immediately upon a player dismebarking on a previously unclaimed body, and does not require selling scan data to Universal Cartographics.[8]

Millions of older planets have refreshed visuals with new levels of detail. Each sunset feels unique with a new algorithm that factors in the composition of the planetary atmosphere, the color, distance of the nearby stars, and other variables. New living creatures are distributed across the galaxy based on complex, in-fiction rules and logic. These biologicals (flora and vegetation) can be located from orbit. The player can then land to sample their genomes, and return to a starport and exchange those discoveries for credits and buy upgrades. Player names are permanently attached to the things they discover.[11]

Players can explore both settlements and crashed ships, as well as Guardian and Thargoid sites.[12]

Odyssey also introduces a multi-layered tactical environment in which commanders (on foot), SRVs, and ships can engage in combat with each other simultaneously. With Multicrew, multiple commanders aboard the same ship can deploy on foot, in an SRV, and in a Ship-Launched Fighter all at the same time. Ship weapons cannot target commanders because they are too small to target, but commanders can use certain handheld weapons to target ships. SRVs can damage commanders by running over them, but ships cannot ram commanders.[9]

In the event a player is critically injured while on foot, where they redeploy is determined by their location and whether or not they own a ship. Players who do not own a ship will redeploy at the nearest Concourse. Players who own a ship and used it to travel to the planet where they were injured may choose to redeploy aboard that ship, which will be automatically relocated to a safe orbit above the planet, or the nearest Concourse. Players who own a ship but left it at a port will redeploy aboard that ship at that port.[10] Players also lose any items in their suit's backpack when they are injured, but not equipped tools or weapons.[12]

Concourses

Starports, orbital Outposts, Asteroid Bases, and Planetary Ports are home to new Concourses, public common areas where players can meet with each other, take on missions, purchase equipment and ships, exchange or sell certain commodities, and redeem discoveries. All Concourses provide access to seven different vendors, each offering a unique service. Players can even travel from one Concourse to another, or to settlements, without the need for their own ship via Apex Interstellar Transport's shuttle service.[13][14][15] Players can also participate in large ground battles through Frontline Solutions.[12]

Equipment

To facilitate footfall activities, players must make use of new footfall-specific equipment types: suits, consumables, and handheld weapons and tools. The player can change their suit and equipment while aboard their ship or inside their SRV.[12] The player's suit includes a specialised HUD interface.

There are four different suit models, each optimized for a different type of activity. The basic Flight Suit used by pilots is the least versatile and resilient of the four, but is safe enough for venturing out of the ship. Premium suits include the Maverick Suit, designed for scavenging, the Artemis Suit, designed for exploration, and the Dominator Suit, designed for combat. All suits possess shields and life support systems which are maintained by a battery with a finite charge; the player can adjust the power distribution for these systems. Suits also have varying backpack capacities; the Maverick has the most amount of space, while the Dominator has the least. Lastly, suits can be cosmetically customized with different skins.[13][10][12]

Handheld weapons and tools allow the player battle other players and NPC or defensive emplacements, and interact with the enviroment. Weapon types include assault rifles, rocket launchers, shotguns, sniper rifles, carbines, pistols, and three types of grenades, including Frag Grenades, EMP Grenades, and Shield Grenades. The first weapon that players receive is a pistol.[16] Tools include the Genetic Sampler, which is used to take samples of organisms that can be sold to Vista Genomics, the Arc Cutter, which can open panels and carve new pathways inside settlement buildings, the Energylink, which can drain power from or overload devices, and the Profile Analyser, which can scan targeted individuals and clone security authorisation profiles. Tools are tied to the type of suit the player is wearing. The Maverick Suit is equipped with the Arc Cutter, Energylink, and Profile Analyser, the Artemis Suit is equipped with the Genetic Sampler, and the Manticore Dominator eschews tools in favor of carrying a second primary weapon and extra grenades.[10]

The corporations Kinematic Armaments, Manticore, and Takada each specialize in handheld weapons that fire a certain type of projectile. Kinematic Armaments weapons fire kinetic rounds (very effective against armoured targets), Takada weapons fire lasers (very effective against shielded targets), and Manticore weapons fire plasma rounds (moderately effective against all targets). In addition, rocket launchers and grenades are explosive weapons that are especially effective against ships and SRVs.[16][10]

All handheld weapons possess an aim-down-sight function. They can also be modified with a number of attachments, such as scopes, but replacing one attachment with another results in the loss of the old attachment. Players can own multiple copies of the same weapon, but can only carry a limited number of weapons when disembarking from their ships. Weapons have finite ammunition which can be replenished with consumable pickups found in the field. Players can drop ammunition and grenades for other players in their instance to pick up if desired.[16] Other consumables include the Medkit and the E-Breach.[10]

Players can also collect new items: Components, Data, and Goods. These are variously used as mission objectives, a source of income, and materials for upgrading pilot equipment.

Settlements

Settlements have an expanded range of functionality in Odyssey, as well as new layouts. There are over 16 new settlement types with distinct structures and room types. These are located on planets and moons with tenuous atmospheres. The type of settlement determines everything from its layout, the kind of NPCs present, the range of available activities and missions, and what items can be retrieved or stolen. The interiors of all settlement buildings have breathable atmospheres, which means players will not draw on their suit's life support while indoors. Players can interact with the local NPCs peacefully, such as through trade, or violently, such as by eliminating NPCs loyal to a hostile faction or engaging in piracy.[17][13] Players with a neutral or positive reputation with the minor faction that controls a settlement will be permitted to land at a settlement's Landing Pad or in its vicinity without triggering the settlement's defence turrets.[12]

Settlements can be found in one of nine different states, which further determine its contents. If a player attacks a populated settlement, the controlling minor faction will dispatch a squad of military-strength reinforcements. A player who massacres an entire settlement and manages to defeat all reinforcements will face severe consequences. Depopulated settlements will repopulate over time. Anti-ship defences also make aerial attacks on settlements dangerous to attempt unless players on the ground disable those defences first, either by deactivating them in a settlement's security center or shutting down a settlement's power plant. Players can also deactivate a settlement's power plant to unlock restricted areas that are normally sealed or steal the Power Regulator.[18][10][12]

NPCs at settlements are classified as either guards, who are armed and will investigate disturbances or attack detected hostiles, or civilians, who lack personal shields to protect themselves but can alert guards to intruders. When intruders or illegal activities are detected by an NPC, the player can kill that NPC to try and prevent them from contacting other NPCs and alerting them. Certain actions such as shutting down a settlement's power plant will trigger a general alert across the settlement, but it still takes time for guard NPCs to gather at the reactor building to investigate the problem.[10]

Odyssey added over 400,000 settlements to the game.[5]

Stellar Forge improvements

Qa'wakana-7-A in ED Horizons and Odyssey

The Stellar Forge (SF) has been upgraded with terrains and terrain materials of various different types and scales which are deterministically selected and blended together depending on the SF-driven properties of that planet. Landable planets are classified between rocky, icy, rocky ice, high metal content and metal rich depending on what emerges from the SF, but their terrains are dependent on those simulation values more than these discrete titles. Terrain shapes, styles, and combinations are mixed together, meaning there is a lot of variation within these classes.[19][20]

Across a planet there is now a large scale mask processed which determines different zones of types of terrain based. The mask depends on things like how gravitationally stressed the planet is, the crust thickness and if the planet is, or has been, tectonically active. These zones mask out further subzones of terrain and material types, and follow the flow patterns laid out by the layer above it, creating a seamless landscape across the planet.[19][20]

New occlusion systems. New tech will enable identifying areas and features of planets, the type of terrain, basins, craters, etc from orbit/space. Distinct regions are blended together such as flat and mountainous areas. Planets now use a mix of procedural features and pre-baked, hand-crafted assets, all blended together. Scatter system for rocks, flora, etc will be more systemic and deterministic for each planet, so that assets are in a more natural place. Multiple geomes are supported, so planets can have mixed-combinations of surfaces: dusty, rocky, icy, snowy, etc. Most of the game has has graphical changes, which includes the stars.[21]

Use of a new Physically Based Rendering system throughout the game gives stars a new "light". Different planets' atmospheres will have different colours based on their primary composition. For example atmosphere colours/types: red, yellow, green, blue, lots of shades. Raleigh scattering for light refraction based on the star light's wavelength and planet atmosphere density. Mie scattering for light absorption based on atmosphere elements and composition. Oxygen, Argon, Neon, etc. absorb light differently. This produces a huge variety of visual possibilities.[21]

Hints at more landable planets to come, only tenuous atmosphere planets have been unlocked for Odyssey's launch.[21]

Other additions and changes

Post-launch additions and changes

  • Update 6[22]
    • The Camera suite is updated with a collision detection system, and instances of blackout intersections are reduced.[23]
    • Military Settlements gain "Enforcer" personnel armed with the Karma L-6 to better defend against SRVs.
  • Update 7[24]
    • Conflict Zones gain more anti-ship defence turrets, which On Foot players can optionally disable.
    • Apex Interstellar Transport shuttles can be redirected mid-flight to return to the departure point or divert to another destination if there is sufficient fuel.
    • Module storage limit is increased from 120 to 200.
    • Galaxy Map bookmark limit is increased from 100 to 200.
  • Future planned updates[22][24]
    • Multicrew player cap is increased from 3 to 4, and several ships are fitted with a 4th pilot seat.
    • Multiple new Engineers with Pilot Equipment modifications are added to the Colonia Region.
    • On Foot mission variety and objectives are increased.
    • Horizons Flight Suit and Outfit cosmetics are made compatible for Odyssey suits.
    • Concourses are added to Flight Operations Carrier Megaships.

Alpha

The initial roadmap for Odyssey alpha phases

The Elite Dangerous: Odyssey PC alpha ran from March 29, 2021 to May 5, 2021.[10][25] Access to the alpha could be obtained through purchasing the Odyssey Deluxe Alpha edition or owning the Lifetime Expansion Pass. Over the course of the alpha, Odyssey features were introduced incrementally in order to focus community feedback.[4]

  • Phase 1: First Steps (March 29 - April 8)
    • During the first phase of the alpha, all participants were given a fresh commander profile and began at Armstrong's Legacy in the Adityan system. Players were restricted to Adityan for this phase to maximise player interaction and stress-test the game's network.
    • The Maverick Suit, and Kinematic Armaments and Takada weapons could be purchased.
    • Players did not have access to ships, but could travel using Apex Interstellar Transport to reach groundside mission locations.
    • Salvage and collection/delivery missions were available.
  • Phase 2: Combat (April 8 - April 15)
    • The starting point of the alpha was moved to the Nervi system.
    • A 20ly bubble of space surrounding Adityan, which included Nervi, was opened up for interstellar travel, and players could purchase ships. All players were granted a Cobra MkIII to start with.
    • The Dominator Suit could be purchased.
    • Faction conflicts were enabled and combat missions at Conflict Zones were available through Frontline Solutions.
    • Several fixes and improvements based on Phase 1 feedback were added.
  • Phase 3: Exploration (April 15 - April 28)
    • The bubble of playable space was expanded to 50ly, allowing players to visit unexplored planets and test the "First Footfall" discovery mechanic.
    • The Artemis Suit could be purchased.
    • The Genetic Sampler tool was enabled, allowing exobiology gameplay.
  • Phase 4: Compatibility (April 28 - May 5)
    • A snapshot of players' main commander profiles taken on April 23, 2021 was added to the alpha. Players had access to their owned ships and funds. Normal ship transfer costs and wait times were reduced so players could transfer their ships into the playable 50ly zone.
    • All base game features were enabled to test their compatibility with Odyssey features. Fleet Carriers were enabled belatedly on April 30.

Compatibility

Horizons/Odyssey compatibility between PC launch and console launch

Horizons/Odyssey compatibility after console launch

Between the PC launch of Odyssey on May 19, 2021 until the console launch later that year, players who own Odyssey and players who only own Horizons will be temporarily unable to instance with each other.[26] Both groups will continue to share the same galaxy and background simulation, but Horizons players will not have access to any new content or improvements added by Odyssey. If an Odyssey owner wishes to play with a friend who only has Horizons, they have the option of switching to the Horizons version of the game via the PC launcher, but while playing Horizons they will not have access to any Odyssey-specific features or items.[27][28]

After the console version of Odyssey becomes available, this bifurcation of the community will mostly end, and Elite Dangerous will be updated to reunite both branches of the game. Odyssey and Horizons players will be able to instance with each other, though Horizons players will not be able to land on planets with tenuous atmospheres because they will not be able to obtain the required Advanced Planetary Approach Suite. However, Horizons players will be able experience the graphical update and planet-generation improvements in Odyssey.[27][28]

Due to the addition of first-person shooter gameplay in Odyssey, it was given a higher age restriction rating than the Elite Dangerous base game by the PEGI. As a result, players who own Odyssey will be blocked from instancing on non-atmospheric landable worlds with players who do not own Odyssey.[29]

Editions

Elite Dangerous: Odyssey is currently available for pre-order in two editions on PC. Pre-order options for Xbox and PlayStation will be made available on a future date.[30]

  • Elite Dangerous: Odyssey (PC)
    • £29.99/$39.99/34.99EUR/₽2,900[31]/₽725[32]
    • Includes the Odyssey expansion and the exclusive "Pioneer" suit skin
  • Elite Dangerous: Odyssey - Deluxe Alpha Expansion (PC)
    • £39.99/$54.99/46.99EUR/₽3,900[31]/₽1035[32]
    • Includes the Odyssey expansion, the exclusive "Pioneer" suit skin, the Official Digital Soundtrack, and access to the Odyssey pre-release alpha version

Development

Base arrive concept art

On 15 November 2019 Frontier described the new era of Elite in a Trading Statement and Roadmap Update:

"The future for Elite Dangerous is also exciting. Frontier is developing a major new paid-for release for the iconic space simulation which will dramatically expand gameplay and mark the beginning of a new era for Elite Dangerous. This will be characterised by significant new features to appeal to existing commanders, whilst being specifically designed to be a compelling, attractive and welcoming entry point for new players. Targeted for launch at the end of 2020, this major new release on multiple platforms will fall into financial year 2021."[33]

Bar concept art

Frontier said on 1 March 2019:"Back in August (2018), we mentioned that the team had begun work on the next major era of Elite. We believe this will be a defining moment in the history of the game and it will be our biggest update yet."[2]

"In that post, we explained that the content was still very early in development, so we won’t be ready to announce it for a while. To give this more context, in order to realise the ambition for this update, and the size and scope of the content we wish to bring to the Elite Dangerous galaxy, we estimate this major milestone will be ready by the latter half of 2020."[2]

"As development progresses, we will share more news and announcements on features, as well as timelines regarding this upcoming content for Elite. We can understand that having a long wait for news can be frustrating, but we truly believe that this will be the single most impactful update for our community. Having a development team dedicated to this milestone is our continued and unwavering commitment to making Elite Dangerous the most authentic, ambitious, and expansive evolving space game in the world."[2]

On October 22, 2019, Community Manager Will Flanagan said:"The team have been hard at work on the next major milestone, which you may remember we mentioned back in March as our next major paid addition to the game. They’re making fantastic progress and on schedule for release by the end of next year. We are very excited to show you what we’ve been working on. However, we can only announce the content when it’s at the right stage of development, we estimate this will be ready to talk about at some time in summer 2020, after the Fleet Carriers update. We appreciate there is a bit of a wait, but we want to make sure it is ready to be shown before making our full official announcement to the world."[34]

On June 3, 2020, less than a week before the release of the Fleet Carriers Update, a trailer for the expansion containing in-engine pre-alpha footage and revealing its name as Elite Dangerous: Odyssey was accidentally uploaded to the official Elite Dangerous YouTube channel. Although the trailer was swiftly removed, copies of it were captured and uploaded by fans, and Frontier Developments eventually decided to advance their announcement plans and reveal Odyssey the same day.[1]

Launch

The PC version of Elite Dangerous: Odyssey was released on May 19, 2021. The press reviews are generally mediocre at 55/100.[35] On May 23, 2021, the user review score dropped to 30% positive out of 2,055 reviews.[36] The main reasons users gave for their disapproval include a plethora of technical issues, poor optimization and performance, and bugs.[37] By September 2021, the Steam user reviews score improved to 37%.[37]

In September 2021, Frontier Developments reported a 19% rise in revenue and its existing game franchise portfolio continued to perform well. Engagement has gradually improved in the player community for Elite Dangerous after the botched release of Odyssey.[38]

Post-launch support

Frontier Developments CEO David Braben personally responded to the rocky launch of Odyssey in two posts on the Frontier Forums:[39]

Odyssey Progress

Greetings Commanders,

With our first hotfix now released and another one arriving very shortly, I wanted to take a moment to address the wider community feedback and reports regarding performance issues, server outages, and bug reports within Elite Dangerous Odyssey.

First and foremost, I would like to apologise wholeheartedly to those who have been suffering from these problems. I would like to reassure you that we take these issues very seriously and that they are our top priority and focus.

Our second hotfix will be released very soon, which we hope will address more of the reported bugs and bring further stability improvements into the game.  We will continue to work on updates which will resolve more bugs and improve stability further.

Some of our players are reporting poor performance on machines where we would expect the performance to be good, and others are saying it is fine. We are trying to get to the bottom of this. I have been playing on my old home machine from 2014, which has an Intel i7 Extreme CPU and a GTX 980 GPU, 16 Gb RAM, playing at 1080p full screen at Ultra. I was doing this so I could have a good feel for how the game was playing on older hardware, and I used this same machine during Alpha. I have also been playing on a high spec 2021 dev machine.

I would like to thank you all for your patience and support. The Elite Dangerous community has always been at the heart of the game. We understand that there are a number of players who have had problems accessing and playing the game and I can assure you that we are focusing fully on improving this for those affected and communicating with you openly and regularly about how these issues are being addressed.

Thank you all,

David

David Braben, May 21 2021

Odyssey Progress (2)

Greetings CMDRs,

Here’s a further update on where we are with Odyssey, and to keep you updated on our progress and our investigations, and talk a little about our next steps. This will be a long post, but please bear with me.

Firstly, once again I apologise for the experience many players have had running Odyssey, particularly the server issues and disconnects. Despite careful server spooling up anticipating significant demand, they were still overloaded. After a good deal of investigation, the main cause of this proved to be to do with Fleet Carriers and the systems they use. I’ll try and explain the gist of what the problem was, how we found it, and why it didn’t show during the public Alpha. The whole team are working incredibly hard to resolve the issues as quickly as possible and improve player’s experiences and this is part of that process.

As you probably know, we split Horizons and Odyssey into two sets of servers – with the plan to keep it that way until we ship Odyssey on console. Fleet Carriers exist in both ‘worlds’ and when a Fleet Carrier jumps, this (and all the players on board) are kept in sync between the two galaxies. Due to a bug with them, significant amounts of data were going back and forth between the two worlds unnecessarily, and this loop between the sets of servers simply mounted up and started bringing servers down or blocking them (resulting in many players getting disconnect errors). This is why we stopped Fleet Carriers jumping, and immediately we saw a significant improvement overall. There were other issues too with this subsystem, keeping the BGS and other things in sync between the ‘worlds’. Once we had a solid fix for the Fleet Carrier and sync issues we deployed it to the servers, and re-enabled Fleet Carriers jumping. This was compounded by the fact we had a record number of concurrent players, so the servers were already working hard. Initially we thought this was the effect we were seeing – that the high number of players was the main issue - but eventually some very smart people determined what was happening with Fleet Carriers.

Turning to the subject of performance, first of all I’d like to provide some background. When we first set the min specs for Elite Dangerous (back at the time of the Kickstarter in 2012) we made the assumption that for low-spec machines the game was playable as long as the frame rate was above 30 fps, with 60 fps for higher spec machines. Over the subsequent weeks and months after release in 2014 we optimised the game significantly. We had a similar thought process for Odyssey, especially considering that the lower spec machines will tend to be five years old or more, or be laptops, that 30 fps would be acceptable as a minimum spec performance. Separately, we have heard reports of very high spec machines failing to perform as expected. We believe this is a different issue, possibly CPU-related, and are looking into that too, as we speak.

We will get to the bottom of the performance issues, particularly with the support of the community who are already providing useful information.

Elite has always been about scale and ambition. With this latest, and biggest, expansion the team have taken on an amazing challenge. The whole galaxy in 1:1 scale, now down to the millimetre. Millions of players interacting with each other and many millions of AI game characters on billions of worlds, all orbiting around each other in an incredibly rich galaxy-wide ballet. I truly believe the team have created a milestone in modern video game history. This is not a static arena shooter where all the players join at the start, but where players are continually joining, leaving, travelling between servers alone and in groups, and so many other things. It is a real shame this incredible achievement is somewhat overshadowed by the issues we have been seeing. We remain committed to improving everyone’s experience. In the words of JFK: “We choose to go to the moon this decade and do the other things… not because they are easy, but because they are hard.”

So what are we doing to fix the issues?

As mentioned above, the team have been working incredibly hard to support and fix critical issues. They have already made good progress with three hot fixes and many server tweaks too, but we can see there is still more to come. Disconnects are now greatly reduced, despite record concurrent player numbers.

As already explained, the performance issues may take a little longer to resolve, and we greatly appreciate your patience.

Our plan is to publish a road-map by 4th June as we continue to push forward addressing issues, including giving some details on specific improvements, building upon the fixes the team have already made.

Thank you and my apologies again for the bumpy start to Odyssey.

David Braben, May 25 2021

Fixes and updates

Frontier Developments released a series of updates and hotfixes in the weeks after the Odyssey launch to correct the large number of issues reported by players, and address feedback about ways to improve Odyssey features and changes.[40][41] A roadmap of patches was provided for the month of June 2021, ending with Update 5.[42] From there, Frontier planned to turn its focus to the rollout of Odyssey on consoles, but would continue to provide improvements to the PC version.[43]

On July 12, 2021, Frontier reiterated its post-launch priorities for Odyssey, explaining that they had decided to focus on further improvements to the PC version, and push the console release back indefinitely until the PC version had reached an acceptable state. More patches for the PC version were planned for the remainder of 2021, beginning with Update 6.[6] It was confirmed on July 26 that beginning with Update 6, small content additions and gameplay changes were also planned for future Odyssey updates.[22]

Developer Update posts

Performance

Odyssey system requirements

Odyssey has higher system requirements than Elite Dangerous and Horizons. Odyssey owners who experience low frames per second (FPS) or stuttering should first verify that their PC meets the system requirements and update their GPU drivers. Other possible solutions are listed below.

Reset graphics

If problems persist, the following procedure may improve the game's performance and is officially recommended by Frontier Developments:[44][45]

  1. Navigate to this file location: %LOCALAPPDATA%\Frontier Developments\Elite Dangerous\Options\Graphics
  2. Make a backup of every file in the graphics folder, and place it somewhere safe for future reference.
  3. Delete the original files in the Graphics folder.
  4. Restart the game.

Drivers

Some CMDRs report considerable performance boosts in Odyssey by doing these:

Graphics settings

  • Set Vsync to off. The GPU does unnecessary extra work on rendering frames that are never shown to the user. If you do set VSync to off, make sure to set a FPS limit (or on NVidia, use the other VSync options, like 'fast'), otherwise you would fry your GPU.
  • Turn FX to "OFF". Turn Volumetric effects quality to low.
  • Put the shadows to medium or low.

Alpha files

For Odyssey owners who pre-ordered and played the alpha version, the alpha file PUBLIC_TEST_SERVER_0D can be deleted to free up 46 gigabytes of space.[46]

Orange Sidewinder fix

Possible workaround by Frontier:[1][47]

  1. Open the Elite Dangerous Steam launcher.
  2. Select Options > Validate Game Files.
  3. You should now be able to play.

Additional Step:

  • AS AN ADDITIONAL step to try, some success has been found by disabling the Elite Dangerous Cache prior to validating:
    1. Steam > Settings from the top left client menu.
    2. In the Settings panel, select the Downloads tab and you'll find the "Clear Download Cache" button at the bottom.
    3. Then select "OK" to confirm and acknowledge that you'll need to login to Steam again.

We currently believe that the reason why loading screen timeouts and 'Orange Sidewinders' are occurring, is because some of the resource files for Odyssey appear to have initially deployed to Steam incorrectly, during the update process.

  • Tip: Disable Virtual Cache in the options before verifying the files, not doing so can slow down the process a lot on slow PC's. Also, it may take a while for the launcher to get past "preparing for update" (20+ min on old hard disks (it's less than a minute on NVMe). I didn't disable the cache but I also have a very fast M.2 NVMe drive.

Related: a fix if the launcher is stuck on 'preparing for update'.[48]

Mods

Check the graphics mods if you want to increase the planetary and space details beyond the highest settings in-game.

VR

ED: Odyssey will not feature VR compatibility in footfall-related activities at launch. There are currently no definite plans to bring VR to Odyssey, but it has not been ruled out.[49][50] VR remains available when piloting a ship.[15]

VR mod

Some players figured out how to activate head tracking in Odyssey.[51][52]

  1. Get into Camera Suite
  2. Press the "Enter Free Camera" button in sequence but very quickly (called "plinking" if you're familiar with fighting game terminology).
  3. This will free up the camera, enable full VR walking with crouch and head bob.

This video shows that VR in Elite on foot is possible and supported by the engine. The fundamentals are there for first person VR (minus the HUD).[53]

Notes

  • Contrary to alleged leaks and rumours,[54] Odyssey does not include the ability explore the interior of one's ship on foot,[15] nor the ability build custom planetside bases.[49]
  • Unlike Elite Dangerous: Horizons, the previous paid content addition for Elite Dangerous, Odyssey is not a season of new content and updates released over a period of time, but a single, feature-complete expansion. In other words, all features announced and confirmed to be included in Odyssey will be available at launch, rather than doled out over multiple post-launch updates.
  • Odyssey and access to its alpha are both included in the Lifetime Expansion Pass.[49]
  • During development, Odyssey's internal codename was "Watson".[55]
  • If you have problems with installing or activating the Odyssey expansion please check Frontier Support.

Videos

Gallery

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Announcement
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Frontier Forums: Important Community Update (01/03)
  3. Frontier Forums: Community Update (01/05)
  4. 4.0 4.1 Frontier Forums: Odyssey Update 2021
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Patch Notes
  6. 6.0 6.1 Frontier Forums: Odyssey Going Forwards
  7. Frontier talks about Elite's new on-foot exploration update, Odyssey
  8. 8.0 8.1 Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Q&A- First Footfall
  9. 9.0 9.1 Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Q&A - Ships and Vehicles
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 10.6 10.7 10.8 10.9 YouTube: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey - Mission Playthrough
  11. Elite: Dangerous expansion aims to give players their own 'Neil Armstrong moment'
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 12.6 Frontier Forums: EDO Q&A Notes - (Supercruise News #26)
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Polygon: New expansion for Elite Dangerous will add tens of thousands of locations to the game
  14. Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey | The Road To Odyssey Part 2 - Forging Your Path
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Odyssey: Update on VR and Ship Interiors
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Q&A - Weapons
  17. Elite Dangerous Interview: Devs Detail Upcoming Odyssey Expansion
  18. Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Q&A - Settlements
  19. 19.0 19.1 https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/new-odyssey-article-more-on-planet-generation.562834/#post-8891009
  20. 20.0 20.1 https://issuu.com/bizmediauk/docs/mcv964_jan21_digital
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 Quick Notes from Livestream - Discovery Scanner: w/ Piers Jackson & Dr Kay Ross. - 27 April, 2021.
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 Frontier Forums: Development Update 2 - July
  23. Frontier Forums: Camera Suite Improvements: Update Notes
  24. 24.0 24.1 Frontier Forums: Developer Update 3 - August
  25. Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Alpha Extension
  26. Frontier Forums: Horizons/Odyssey Compatibility - Further Details
  27. 27.0 27.1 Frontier Forums: Horizons / Odyssey Compatibility
  28. 28.0 28.1 Frontier Forums: Horizons / Odyssey Compatibility, post #96
  29. Frontier Forums: CM Arf: Elite/Horizons (PEGI 7?) CMDRs won't instance with Odyssey (higher PEGI rating) CMDRs on non-atmos planets because of rating restrictions
  30. Frontier Forums: Commander, this is Ground Control
  31. 31.0 31.1 Frontier Sore
  32. 32.0 32.1 Steam or EpicGames
  33. Frontier Trading Statement & Roadmap Update
  34. https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/community-update-22-10.527123/
  35. Metacritic ED: Odyssey reviews.
  36. Frontier forums https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/the-great-big-odyssey-mostly-negative-rating-thread.576799/
  37. 37.0 37.1 Steam: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey - Customer Reviews
  38. Proactive Investors: Frontier Developments reports record results, 2021-09-08
  39. PC Gamer: Frontier CEO apologises wholeheartedly for shoddy Elite Dangerous Odyssey launch
  40. Frontier Forums: Optimisation/Performance and UI Feedback
  41. r/EliteDangerous: What Obsidian Ant's Video Gets Right, and this community gets wrong.
  42. Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous | Odyssey: Roadmap
  43. Frontier Forums: Development Update 1
  44. r/EliteDangerous: For anyone with awful FPS after getting Odyssey: here's how I fixed it
  45. Frontier Forums: Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Hotfix 1
  46. r/EliteDangerous: Commanders! Did you play alpha of #EliteDangerous #Odyssey? Then you should know that you have around 46GB of trash folder sitting in your game directory and you should remove it manually if you need that space back! Just saying! 07!
  47. https://www.reddit.com/r/EliteDangerous/comments/o1uct8/steam_users_with_orange_sidewinder_after_update_4/
  48. https://customersupport.frontier.co.uk/hc/en-us/articles/360020793039-The-launcher-is-stuck-on-Preparing-for-update-when-I-try-to-install-the-Odyssey-Alpha-
  49. 49.0 49.1 49.2 https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/elite-dangerous-odyssey-announcement.546389/page-363#post-9310835
  50. https://uploadvr.com/elite-dangerous-odyssey-wont-have-vr-support-at-launch/
  51. https://steamcommunity.com/app/359320/discussions/0/4164121860559128897/?ctp=2
  52. https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/vr-first-person-on-foot-vr-works-in-odyssey.582713/
  53. https://www.reddit.com/r/EliteDangerous/comments/o26l3n/on_foot_vr_in_elite_dangerous_odyssey/
  54. https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/roadmap-leaked.509196/
  55. https://www.reddit.com/r/EliteDangerous/comments/gxx6qk/seeming_confirmation_that_the_leak_was_about/
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