The next 'Elite Dangerous' expansion lets players walk on planets

The 'Odyssey' update arrives early 2021.

Frontier Developments

To date, Elite Dangerous players have had to enjoy the game's recreation of the Milky Way Galaxy from the confines of their spaceships and landing vehicles, but that will soon change. For the MMO's next expansion, Odyssey, players will be able to explore new worlds on foot.

The update will build on 2015's Horizons DLC, which gave players the chance to land on planets. Like Elite's current slate of missions, the game's upcoming ground adventures will see players engage in diplomacy, trade, stealth and combat. Series creator Frontier Developments says battles on the surface of planets will require you to work with your teammates and think about how you equip your character. You'll also need to keep an eye to the sky as spaceships will be able to take part in battles, as will the game's SRV ground vehicles.

The addition of foot traversal will also help flesh out the game's social hubs where you'll be able to interact with non-playable characters and other individuals in person. The studio said it developed new technology to power the on-the-ground experience, which may give you a reason to revisit some of the worlds you traveled to earlier in your Elite Dangerous career. The change may also help entice some No Man's Sky and Star Citizen players to give the game a second look.

Frontier Developments says it plans to release Odyssey in early 2021. Until then, the most exciting development in the Elite Dangerous world is the addition of fleet carriers, which the game's community is currently beta testing. The new ship type is expected to allow players to explore more of the Milky Way. At the end of 2019, Frontier Developments said players had explored 0.042 percent of the galaxy.