SGJ Podcast #71: Elite Clones for Your Space Trading Needs

Surprisingly Pretty

Surprisingly Pretty

Say you wanna play in the open playground that is Elite: Dangerous, but don’t want to shell out $75 for the beta version. You’re in luck, my friend, because this week Jim and I take a look at some of the open-source Elite alternatives that cost significantly less (or nothing at all) yet still scratch the same type of itch as Elite: Dangerous. These include:

  • Oolite – This free clone of the original Elite has over 200 mods one can download in the game to make it more expansive or appealing, but we found the difficulty to be a bit on the brutal side. Still a good time if you want that original Elite experience.
  • Pioneer – This free clone of Frontier: Elite II has an expansive universe and detailed gameplay, and I was quite enamored with it, at least until…
  • Paragon – This is a $15 fork of the Pioneer project, and comes with prettier graphics, more streamlined gameplay and a more alive universe. While this is the only one of the games we tested that cost moneys, we found it was worth it, as both of us (especially me) have put a good amount of time into it since purchasing it. It’s still early access, so it’s got bugs (like a sometimes-suicidal autopilot) and crashes here and there, but overall, it’s a great time.
  • First Encounters D3D – This is a free port of the third (and worst) game in the original series, Frontier: First Encounters. Since we couldn’t even get this game to run on the stream, and found it as cumbersome as the original, we skipped it, but I put it here for your reference.

It made for a fun show, especially in the surprise discovery of Paragon, which I sadly forgot about until we were rolling. ;)

As always, if you have a suggestion for a guest or a topic you’d like us to cover, hit us up below or directly at Also of note, the video had some issues as we were streaming, both with my audio and with the Twitch cutting out a few times. YouTube can stitch videos together, but it still might be a bit jarring, so please keep that in mind if watching the video. Thanks again!


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Site & Life Stuff: Happy Birthday Site and Incoming Changes

This. This is My Life Right Now...

This. This is My Life Right Now…

Hey guys, how are ya? Sorry about the lack of posts, but my mind is full-on in moving mode, and I’ve not been able to focus on much else. I’m so out of it I completely missed that the site turned three this past Friday! Happy birthday site! ;)

Now with that said, the move itself is next week, we’ve already begun packing, and with luck and hard work, the move will go smoothly. However, with the move will come some changes that will definitely benefit the site, due to my much, much shorter commute (30 minutes a day vs. 90-120 minutes a day) and having a separate office. These will include:

  • The podcast will now permanently be on Tuesday evenings with random exceptions for time zones and schedules. This will make recording and broadcasting much more consistent.
  • I’ll have a lot more time to put towards creating new content for the site, which should mean new videos and articles on a much more regular, consistent basis (which is what I’ve always wanted).
  • More streaming due to having more time. Since I’ll have more time, I plan to not only make videos straight for YouTube, but to stream more as well!

So while the site is kinda quiet right now, this hopefully explains why this won’t be the case for too much longer. Once the move is settled I should be back on track with more content for the site. Yay!

As a final note, this Wednesday Jim and I are doing our podcast on Orbiter, a realistic space/orbital flight sim. After this week, we won’t be doing a podcast for two weeks while the move gets settled. This means there won’t be a podcast until 9/9/14, wherein when we return we’ll discuss Star Command: Revolution (which was recommended by one of our listeners). Yay!

I wanna thank everyone for their patience in this massively transitional time, and look forward to returning to full blast on the content once all is settled. I appreciate all of you, and thank you for visiting. :)


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Quick Spacey News Digesty Thing 7/30/14: Damn RL…

My Life of Late...

Helloooo my friends! Sorry for the lack of updates or news, life has been CRAZY of late with work … [Continue reading]