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Parents' Guide to

Elite Dangerous

By Jeff Haynes, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Incredibly deep, flexible space adventure; tricky controls.

Elite Dangerous Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 1 parent review

age 10+

Incredible Space Exploration, self driven narrative.

The game is a simulator for a space borne humanity set in the year 3300 onwards. The franchise is over 30 years old and prides itself on 1:1 scale realism in game. If you are looking for an immersive experience, Elite dangerous will allow you to explore the stars and planets as any combination of explorer, trader or combat specialist you choose. This title is five years old and has had updated in terms of DLC which have allowed surface explorations of planets with upcoming capacity to have walking on planets. The content is PG, though the lore includes some light humanitarian themes like war, genocide, civil wars, etc. There is a big push to fight an alien species and there is a lot of political treachery and intrigue. There is some of “drugs and narcotics” in game but they are tradable, not usables. There is minimal plot so the narrative is highly driven by the player. There is an empire our online community and a real capacity to play in squads. The game can be played in a solo capacity but can also be enjoyed as MMORPG with others... This can lead to griefing and nagativw interactions with others, but it appears to happen very irregularity. The community is stronger at on PC, then xbox with PSX being late in the stakes. My ten year old is learning to play and I supervise him as I play as well. It’s is a great game if you have multiple consoles. It is very technical and also not the kind of game you can learn in an hour, but you may find an hour of play is enough every now and again, most prefer to play it for many hours. There are activities which can take hours to complete but the game can be stopped and started any time, albeit with loss of some progress. I would say all in all I’d expect late teen era to like this game, especially those who like a lot of detail and immersive gameplay. Adults will get sucked in by it. The biggest concearn would be others players and chat, but the community is very respectful to the point of a fault so it is a reasonably safe space... Still use with caution and supervision as it is cross platform and the community of play is well above normal and worldwide.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (11 ):

This space adventure is amazingly deep, giving players freedom to define their own tale, if they can deal with some confusing elements and frustrating controls. Plenty of open world games say that they give you the option to do whatever you want, but Elite Dangerous lets you define what you choose to be against the backdrop of 400 billion star systems that can be fully explored. What's more, unlike in other MMORPGs or single-player games, you can start to define your role as soon as the game launches. For instance, you can leap into a system, mine for resources, track down and discover materials from a destroyed ship, and then blast a pirate and collect a bounty before you dock at the nearest space station, just because you feel like it. You can even live out your dreams of being a space pirate or smuggler (if you feel like embracing your inner Han Solo). If you want a larger role in interstellar politics, you can choose to support or foil the goals of some of the galactic factions by taking on critical missions, which changes and impacts the entire universe. That's without taking into account trading opportunities, sightseeing missions, radio signal searches, etc.

Needless to say, you could spend weeks, if not months, circling a small cluster of planets and systems and still not exhaust the content in those areas. That's an incredible achievement. But not everything is perfect in this space odyssey. For one thing, if you're playing on a console, the button commands that you have to remember are very complex. Even when you know what you need to do, you can stumble into the wrong sequence in the middle of action because you forget which direction you needed to press or what your shortcut was. Another issue is that landing on bases or some space stations alternates between incredibly simple and unbelievably frustrating. Much of this is related to the angles of docks and having to tightly maneuver your ship into the right position. Honestly, until you have the money to afford a docking computer (and your ship has the power and space requirements for it), you'll have this constant push and pull between feeling like the best pilot in the stars and wanting to throw something at your screen. Finally, it would've been better if the icon and navigation system was a bit clearer to figure out. For example, finding the direction of a star system that you're trying to leap to isn't always easy. Your jump point could be 215 degrees behind your present location, but being able to always locate it, especially if you're just exiting a battle, means that you'll spend a lot of time hunting around for something that could be indicated in a better way. But even with these issues, the depth and content of Elite Dangerous is so incredible, this space adventure will easily draw you back into your ship's cockpit day after day. If you're a sci-fi fan, you really owe it to yourself to check this out.

Game Details

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