The most recent of Elite Dangerous‘ Interstellar Initiatives (the game’s new take on bugger community goals), and perhaps one of the most interesting to me, involved the discovery of an ancient megaship still inhabited by its crew.
The story of the Golconda, a massive generation ship that’s been travelling for centuries, is that it’s reached a point where it can no longer remain isolated and self sufficient and has been forced to call out for help. The community was tasked with delivering supplies for the two major factions which would ultimately decide the fate of the ship and its inhabitants. In this case the Federation won out over the Empire and a new station was built in the Upaniklis system to help service the colony.
My ship was stationed not too far away on Lowry Ring so I decided to head over there to see the ship for myself and it was worth the visit. Arriving in the system you’ll find that there’s two locations close together: the Golconda itself and the station Forester’s Choice which is the trade hub that operates on behalf of the megaship. First stop of course was the megaship which is a really impressive example of one of these ships and really looks it was built for long term travel with its massive heat shield and multiple rotational sections for providing gravity. Scanning the ship reveals additional nodes to scan which each hold a small record about life on board and why the need for help was so necessary for them. It’s a nice bit of story that accompanies the Galnet (in-game) news perfectly. The final stop was Forester’s Choice and it too was a sight thanks to how it’s main station consists of just a small platform but it sits right next to a much larger agricultural processing station which uses a mishmash of components that looks utilitarian but still promotes its purpose clearly. I’ve not seen anything like it before so its been a nice distraction from the usual space trucking.
On top of the usual agri-items the station also sells a rare Alcohol that and can earn you a few quick dollars on your travels. With the station positioned so closely to the megaship it makes for a unique location that’s worth checking out and still safely within the bubble for new players to see easily enough. For me it might have been one of the best bits of storytelling to come out of the game in a long time and though it ultimately adds little to it in the long term it’s still a good water cooler moment for a game that sometimes feels like it is lacking enough of them.
Elite Dangerous is out now for PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4.