Hot Needle of Inquiry, in her new “White Apollo” paintjob. Contact Light with a moon she is about to land on.
In January 3302, a grand expedition is launching. Dubbed “Distant Worlds”, it is a trek across the galaxy, with the destination being Beagle Point. Over 300 Commanders have signed up for it – and, you guessed it, I am now one of them.
I just couldn’t take the boring cargo hauling. I need to get out there, into the Black, with nary a station within hundreds of lightyears.
Or, in this case, tens of thousands of lightyears.
I always wanted to travel deep into the galaxy, but have been debating worth-while goals. And, perhaps, I have been a little afraid. Afraid of getting stranded. Afraid of running into something… nasty. With the Distant Worlds expedition, help will always be – relatively – close at hand.
While the expedition will not launch for a few weeks, I must prepare for the voyage. While there will be help – some Fuel Rats have joined up, for example; all hail the Fuel Rats! – supplies will limited, and what we don’t bring – and can’t synthesize – we must do without.
There are no set requirements for the ship we can use to join the expedition, except that the organisers say that one jump, near the end of the voyage, requires a 34ly range minimum. (This can be achieved by stocks of Jumponium, of course.)
I will be flying a brand new Asp Explorer, which I have christened “Hot Needle of Inquiry”, after a story written by one of the ancient Earth authors, Larry Niven. I spent much of the weekend working on the loadout I think will be optimal, and this is it:
- D-Rated ship’s system, with the exception of A-rated powerplant and Frame Shift Drive.
- One 3A Powerplant – sized as small as possible to support other components.
- A 4G Planetary Vehicle Hangar, which carries two SRVs. This way, I have a spare.
- A 5B Fuel Scoop. A compromise between efficiency and price.
- A 3D shield generator. I’d like more, but the Asp just can’t fit anything better if I want two SRVs. Also, shields tend to be a huge power drain.
- A 3A Auto Field Maintenance Unit. I’d really like to bring two, but my fellow explorers have told me this should be unnecessary. Carrying only one does allow me to fit a small cargo pod.
- 3E 8-ton Cargo Rack. I may replace this with an AFMU before launch, but it would be nice to carry some supplies or goods – and perhaps a ton of luxury foodstuff and beverages for the celebration at our destination.
- Detailed Surface Scanner and Advanced Discovery Scanner. Never leave home without them.
- 2x Medium 2F/G Pulse Lasers. Not enough for any serious fight, but being completely defenseless strikes me as a bad idea as well. I may downgrade them or omit them before departure.
- 2x Heat Sink Launcher. Can’t fabricate heat sinks, so I’ll bring as many as I can.
- 1x ECM: Just in case.
- 1x FSD Wake Scanner. Just one more sensor to bring to the table.
I have not tested this setup yet, as I haven’t the necessary modules available. I may find, for example, that the weapons are way too powerhungry, or some other such limitation.
The Next Steps
Once I have outfitted the Needle, there is one mandatory task that must be done before departure: Obtain materials to synthesize Jumponium, AFMU refills, SRV fuel, and the like. Launching fully supplied will help stay caught up with the main fleet.
Just a quick (out-of-character) video of my first landing on a planet, filmed in a Beta version of ED Horizons. Hope you enjoy!
As you surely know, Elite:Dangerous – Horizons has launched.
I haven’t played it a whole lot just yet – my YouTube channel takes priority, and I just started a new job IRL – but I love that we now have actual places to visit.
As I was browsing the forums, I stumbled across the Distant Worlds expedition. It aims to cross the galaxy and reach Beagle Point. I always wanted to do something like this, and having a social group to do it with sounds pretty cool. Plus, there’s the hope that help will be fairly close, should something go horribly wrong.
Exciting times for us space explorers!
I am an explorer. Always have been, always will be. But a man’s gotta eat, and more importantly, a man’s gotta upgrade his ship.
Exploration data doesn’t pay very well.
With a view towards a future out in the deep Black, I decided to sell the Blue Sun, my trusty Asp Explorer, and purchase a (slightly used) Lakon Type-7 Transporter. It’s ugly, it’s uncomfortable, but it can fit a decent amount of cargo.
I am currently hauling marine equipment and Palladium, Gold and Machinery. I now know what it feels like being dead inside, but the prospect of a bigger and better exploration ship (it doesn’t have to be bigger) keeps me going.
One of the planets with native life-forms I discovered on my way home from the Pleiades.
The spaceport bars are abuzz with rumors these days. Everybody is talking about the assassination of the Emperor, but one persistent topic are the Unknown Artefacts that have been discovered in several systems. So many, in fact, that the Federation has now taken notice and started researching them.
One rumor I heard was that several such objects have been found in the Pleiades. Of course I had to take a look for myself. I spent three entire days out there, scanning one system after the other for Signal Sources, but found no trace of artefacts – just several narrow escapes from pirate bands who seem to be preying on the influx of explorers.
Eventually, I decided to call off my search. I took a circuitous route home, and scanned several hitherto unexplored systems. The most interesting of the lot had two worlds with indigenous life-forms:
I am now back in Cubeo, contemplating my next steps.
Hello Commanders. I’m back. Hiatus caused by different types of things going on in real life.
I’d like to quickly mention one change: I’ve moved my videos to my primary YouTube channel, Have Joystick, Will Travel. All posts should be updated but if you find issues please let me know.
The reason for this is simply one of efficiency – I can’t feed two channels with material. Hopefully, you’ll like some of the non-Elite channel as well! Drop by and say Hi, I’m looking forward to meeting you on YouTube!
Just received this in the mail:
I’m goin’ to Cologne, baby!