Things can seem pretty daunting sometimes. Distant Worlds 2 is among them. An Elite Dangerous expedition to the far side of the in-game galaxy – no small distance, since the in-game galaxy is the Milky Way (aka Mutter’s Spiral, for the Doctor Who fans out there – a far better name, IMO), modelled at 1:1 scale.
The target is Beagle Point – the furthest known star system way out on the opposite side of the galactic disc, in a region cheerfully known as ‘The Abyss’ (and slightly spinward of The Abyss is ‘Acheron’, where we’re not going, which is probably for the best).
Completing the entire Distant Worlds 2 expedition is expected to take the dedicated space adventurers of Elite Dangerous until September. Yes, real-life September.
I’ve spent the last week sitting at the first waypoint, a mere 5-6,000 light-years from Earth, wondering whether I really want to continue. I don’t mind admitting that it all seems very big and intimidating and, if I’m entirely honest, of questionable worth. I’m increasingly feeling like I just want to call it quits here. I could easily just drop out, and let everyone else get on with the adventure. It’s not as if the expedition wouldn’t just carry on regardless without me.
But the nice thing is that there are other people travelling with me. They’re all in their own ships making their own journey, but there is a great sense of community in the shared voyage. And though I’m already lagging some way behind many of them, there’s no particular rush, and sometimes, really, all you need is a word or two of encouragement from your friends. It’s amazing how much of a boost that can be.
So I’m going to fire up the frame-shift engines again and at least try to make it to the next waypoint. It’s another 6,000 light years or so, but it’s not that unreachable in the scheme of things. See how I feel then. And there will probably be some nice sights along the way.