Elite: Dangerous Blog

News and events from the Elite Dangerous galaxy

Diamondback Explorer blueprint

The is the blueprint for the Lakon Spaceways Diamondback Explorer. The first serious exploration ship and more agile than the larger Asp, but lacking in utility slots.

First introduced in version 1.3 for the PowerPlay expansion.

Thanks to CMDR Aidan Abacus & the CMDRs of www.elitedangerous.de for German translations. Thanks to CMDR Nicou, CMDR Aymerix & CMDR Duita Rider of www.elite-dangerous.fr for French translations.

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Deutsche Version 1920x1080 4096x2305

Version Française 1920x1080 4096x2305

David Braben Speaks - Two Diamondbacks and no module sales tax

Today's 4pm "Ask Me Anything" session with David Braben yielded some interesting snippets.

Firstly, there's now two Diamondback ships - the Scout (56K CR) and the Explorer (2M CR).

The Explorer has a base range of 14Lyr upgradeable (without downgrading shields or going weapon-less) to 32.6Ly!

Secondly, there is not going to be a 10% surcharge on module sales in the next release. The "module sales tax" may come later, but only after consultation it would now seem.

Another helpful bit of information came after this question:
Will Frontier be making official videos covering the ins and outs of Powerplay?
"Yes. Coming SoonTM."


The Scout (rear) and the Explorer (front) are the two Diamondback variants

There are two Diamondbacks. The Diamondback Explorer is the ship we showed in concept art back in April, and the Diamondback Scout is a cut-down cheaper ship made by Lakon for the Federal military.

There is this 10% module sale penalty elephant in the room. What does David Braben think about it?
"There are a few different things here. We should probably have had something in for this at the start, but we need to do something. We understand some of the complaints - particularly about swapping ship load-outs. I also think we should have discussed it beforehand - but given how many things there are in Powerplay, we simply didn't call it out. This is a bone of contention amongst our designers - and we will do something in the future. There should be a cost to this - but that is for another day. So some news - we will be reversing this change shortly (or 'soonTM' as Michael B would say...), so to be clear this aspect will be as it was before in the public release. This is a beta after all, and we want the best experience for everyone."

Powerplay Beta. What's it like?

powerplay_thumbSo three days into the Beta of 1.3 what’s it like? Well, lots of stuff had been tweaked. The sum of which means the game feels subtly different on many levels.

When in super-cruise, your shields now charge at the normal rate and the power management switches now function, so you can switch power around the systems. The audio is, well, enhanced. Travelling in hyperspace there’s a sub-sound like a tunnel echo and in super-cruise your ship makes an electric motor undertone, something like a tube train pulling away or breaking.

The new ships are very cool, but not top of the range examples. These ships fit nicely into the lower-mid range, between a Lakon-6 and an Asp, but are much smaller than I originally expected. More Cobra-sized. The Diamondback carries around 20T of cargo, so NOT a trade-ship.


The Imperial Courier is at least as sexy as the Imperial Clipper, in looks and sound. The cockpit is reminiscent of a Hawker hunter aircraft (The Red Arrow’s plane). It maxes out at Class 4, so the ships isn’t expensive to upgrade and while set to D rated internals, gets a jump range around 28Lyr with shields, which makes it a fair explorer. Where it really excels is as a fighter craft. Fast and agile, with three medium hard-points, it feels like an Eagle but hits like a Cobra. It doesn’t use much power for systems, so even with 15MW I can put three rail guns on it and make a flying sniper-rifle! Three shot kills are a hoot!


The Diamondback has four hard-points, two medium and two small, and is a little less agile than the Courier, but with a slightly greater jump range. Even A rated with weapons, it got 23Lyr range, which to my thinking makes it a very good bounty-hunter’s ship.

Navigation now includes the system maps, so you no longer have to fly to every planet to find that one water-world. You can now click on a planet in the system map and navigate straight there. You can even select the system map of a distant star system and plot a route to a planet within the system! You still jump to the star, but your compass is pointing to the right planet when you arrive.


Mine, Mine, Mine! Limpets (not the greatest name) now allow for prospecting and collecting. Mining is therefore a seriously easier process. Zap away at an asteroid and your deployed collector-limpets fly to the debris, and fly it back to your waiting cargo hatch! Limpets are bought as cargo from the munitions menu and you need a “controller” for collecting and another for prospecting.

powerplay_mining1 powerplay_mining2

I will go over the political stuff of Powerplay when I have had a chance to work out what the heck it all means.

The ships in 1.3 PowerPlay

panther_dockingIt's been quiet in the world of Elite: Dangerous. I've been pretty busy playing the game, so I haven't posted much in the last couple of weeks.

However, things are about to change with the (official) announcement this week of what 1.3 "Powerplay" actually contains. One confirmed addition is the new ship the "Diamondback", as teased in last week's Newsletter.
But what about the rest? Where is the Dolphin, Beluga Liner and Panther Clipper? Will the Imperial Courier and Federal Corvette make their début in 1.3?


We've seen lots of teasers for the Courier, from early concepts to interior cabin shots and some 3D designs from January. These show a ship smaller, but more militaristic than the bigger Clipper. Historically the Imperial Courier was a formidable combat vessel, so we should expect this ship to fit into the same role (and presumably the same price bracket) as the Python, being a heavy combat ship rather than a light fighter.

peek_o_the_week_66 peek_of_the_week_65 PeekOfTheWeek_67_ImperialCourier

Then there's the passenger ships. Okay so the Orca is currently redundant. Without passengers to carry, it's a shiny white Lakon Type 6 for 42 Million credits more... But will 1.3 add passengers? If so the other passenger vessels would have a role to play at last.


Plus flying around in a Beluga would look pretty damn cool!

Then there's the big boys. And when I say big, I mean really BIG! The Panther is bigger than a Type-9 Heavy and almost as long as an Anaconda. The original Panther had over 2000T capacity and was heavily armed and armoured. This could well be THE ultimate trader ship. Tough, big and with enormous cargo space.


Then there's the Corvette. Confirmed as being the largest flyable ship in Elite. Will it even fit through the station entrance? Just..

  corvette_newsletter_61 corv_landed

This ship looks to be both military and built for combat. Being a third larger than an Anaconda, it's probably a third more expensive too, so look to be paying 200M CR for this monster!