Based on the massive exasperation permeating on the internet, commanders might need to reconsider whether to step their foot out of the ship.
The new expansion of Elite Dangerous was bright and promising. Frontier decided to shift from the primarily space-flight mode to the on-foot planetary exploration and first-person combat, introducing new experiences brimming with great appeal and potential. That being said, the ambitious addition seemed to land rather poorly.
The rage of the players is atrociously visible on Steam; the review section of Odyssey is flooded with torrential criticism, leaving 69% of the 4,439 reviews as negative. A commenter even explicitly stated, “Don’t buy this garbage,” expecting no improvement or reimbursement from Frontier. Indeed, hyperbole is often rampant on the internet, especially when the emotion runs high, but in the case of Odyssey, the frustration is sadly legit.
There are numerous bugs that mutilate the gameplay experience: the servers are constantly stressed out, unexpectedly ejecting commanders out of their sessions. More frustratingly, players often find all of their missions gone after the return or items previously acquired lost to the void. And if players were using the new Apex travel service during the crash, they might completely stuck and couldn’t even exit the game.
The exceedingly low frame rate also infuriates the players. A player has even reported that his FPS plummeted to half of the normal state even when he is exploring an empty space, where the engine should have the easiest time running. Such condition turns many activities unplayable, including the battle system, which supposedly was the highlight of this expansion.
Despite Frontier’s promises to maintain the quality of performance in Odyssey, the renderer was completely tragic. The game is constantly rendering every objects around when they are supposed to be occluded. And for things the planets, which are not supposed to be occluded, they are being presented like potatoes melting into the dark background. As one of the reviewers hope, “Looking forward to no more dark planets with a star visible right overhead!”
The diversity of the gameplay also falls under expectation as a new expansion. The clothes and weapons, which should complement different missions with different designs, all appear without distinctive characteristics. Similarly, the fauna across planets lacks the variety that a game of exploration should hold. Moreover, the on-foot missions, another alleged highlight of Odyssey, appear flat and underdeveloped. According to reviewer Dashex, the 400,000 new settlements in the game involve less than ten different activity types.
Frontier this time seems to utterly disappoint the fans of Elite Dangerous. Although it has noticed the issues, which are difficult to be ignored based on the reviews, whether it can regain the favor of the players remains another question.