Elite Dangerous (2014), one of the first truly massive VR-compatible space sims, is releasing its biggest DLC for free today to all players who own the base game.

Initially announced last month by creators Frontier Developments, the previously separate Horizons expansion has now been folded into the base game.

Before today, Horizons cost $30 on top of the base game’s $30 price tag. The free update includes all supported platforms, including PC (SteamVR, Oculus PC), Xbox and PS4.

Launched back in late 2015, Horizons brought to the space-faring simulator the option to finally head out of the ship, land on planets and drive surface recon vehicles to explore the ground below, craft weapons, and allow for multicrew action.

Although the game has lost some of its appeal over the years, it’s good to see Frontier offering even more to new VR players looking to delve into one of the decidedly ‘classic’ space sims out there.

And while the studio initially said VR wasn’t on the roadmap for its 2021 first-person shooter DLC Odyssey, Frontier developer Arthur Tolmie announced last month that VR will be available when users fly down to planets, fly through atmospheres and drive along planet surfaces in their SRVs, although leaving the ship to continue on foot would bring up a 2D projected flat game screen.

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Well before the first modern XR products hit the market, Scott recognized the potential of the technology and set out to understand and document its growth. He has been professionally reporting on the space for nearly a decade as Editor at Road to VR, authoring more than 3,500 articles on the topic. Scott brings that seasoned insight to his reporting from major industry events across the globe.
  • Ron

    For me, still the most immersive VR game out there.

  • Wild Dog

    I fucking knew it. So glad I didn’t buy.

  • JesuSaveSouls

    I paid 59 for base and 59 for expansion.It was very cool when you first step inside vr.Now I don’t play it but nms is way better.

    • ComfyWolf

      I think both games are quite different, ED is more focused on the space sim aspect, while NMS seems more focused on exploration and crafting. Personally NMS got boring fast, it felt repetitive after only a few worlds, the exploration was what interested me the most and it didn’t feel very rewarding, oh look I discovered a rock that looks exactly like the other 500 rocks I’ve discovered and isn’t unique in any way other than its name, but that’s bound to happen in a game that relies on procedural generation for its exploration.

    • Raphael

      Praise be to Kermit, our saviour. NMS = Hello Games deserve the success for turning their initial disaster around.

  • david vincent

    I thought that game was dead, still no atmospheric flying after what ? 7 years ?

    • Raphael

      That’s what happens when a small team is split over a number of dinosaur and theme park games.

  • mirak

    I bougth this game 4 years ago, and played this game like an hour.
    Not that it’s bad, just lack of time. :/

  • Cockney John

    Any details on how one downloads this free piece of software??

  • xxHanoverxx

    Odyssey without VR…whats the point? To me, putting it into a 2-D screen is just a half-a** implementation.

    I’ll be back once it’s fully in VR. For now, I’m happy with how No Man’s Sky turned out.

    • Raphael

      Agree. Lack of coding skill I’m thinking if they think delivering a walking experience in VR isn’t achievable. No Man’s Sky proves them wrong,

    • Golgot

      If you want to push for very basic VR
      Legs at launch, there’s a thread running on the official Suggestion
      forum here:

      the VR ‘2D screen’ to be disabled

      Basically just give us an option to toggle the 2D screen off and see what we can get out of the base game + stereoscopic render. (Never know, might be able to cobble together something worth mucking about in ;))

  • There is a simple VR solution to this problem of a 2D screen for walking around outside your ship. And for blank, boring, dead planets. And for an empty universe with few surprises. And for not being able to do anything once you get anywhere. And for not being able to work the ship controls with your hands. It’s called ‘No Man’s Sky’.

    And, as a player of both games, No Man’s Sky is absolutely the better.

    In Elite, I have flown cargo from point A to point B. I have fought dogfights.

    In No Man’s Sky, I built a spiraling resort town around an extinct volcano cone on a lush tropical planet, took a submarine down to the undersea science base I built nearly a kilometer under the alien ocean, and then, on the surface, got into my starship, lifted off from the ocean surface tower, and flew to another starsystem where I discovered ancient ruins while fending off ancient, angry robots protecting it.

    Then I flew home and enjoyed the rainbow that appeared after a storm near my volcanic resort. And I am a simpleton level player.

    Oh, and I did all of that accompanied by my friend who lives in another state… and who flies a cooler ship than me. Alas.

    Elite is… it exists. I will give it that. It is a product that exists.

    No Man’s Sky is a vacation in space.

    • Raphael

      Agree. Hello Games have really turned their game around and stunned the VR gaming world. It’s interesting that Frontier have made the choice NOT to learn from it and are stepping backwards. However, if you look at their long history of poor choices and retractions… this latest decision is in keeping with their previous ones.

      I remember when they planned to charge full game price for each seasonal content release. That idea was shot down.

      Then of course the decision to make fleet carriers so expensive to buy and maintain that people got angry. They have some really poor decision makers at Frontier.

  • You’re not missing much without it. Driving on a planet is ok, but about 1/100th as interesting as No Man’s Sky. I’ve clocked over a hundred hours into both games, single player and co-op, and Elite’s planets are AMAZINGLY dull. You get the 1 minute thrill of actually getting out of your ship, followed by the tediousness of finding there’s little to nothing to really do. I appreciate the differences between simulator and arcade, but it’s just so lame. It’s a handful of models and couple of new enemies. There must be like 2 people working on those modules. It’s so phoned in.

    • Raphael


  • Rupert Jung

    Did they implement Temporal Anti-Aliasing in the meanwhile? Was not playing it because of the bad flickering.

  • Treebugger

    Just got this off Epic store for free, in the first three hours I learned from tutorials. Next I remapped the default controls, then I gamed for ten hours did nothing but milk runs zero combat. Made enough credit to buy a Viper MKIII, then for no reason decided to try out Horizons on my MkIII one horrible mission later I crashed on planet with no warning. Lost my MkIII and got spawned in the shitty starter craft, except instead of having my MKIII in shipyard I discover I now have two shitty starter ships.

    Eff you Horizons!!