Elite: Dangerous Players Band Together To Save Cancer Patient’s Expedition From Griefers

Elite: Dangerous Players Band Together To Save Cancer Patient’s Expedition From Griefers

Since January 13, a group of Elite: Dangerous players has been journeying across the galaxy to reach Dove Enigma station, named for a member of the expedition, Brandon “DoveEnigma13” Keith. Keith is fighting terminal cancer.

The trip, a relatively leisurely sightseeing tour and charity drive assembled for the benefit of both Keith and his five-year-old daughter, seemed to be going smoothly enough until this week, when griefers struck. Still a ways out from Dove Enigma, members of the expedition discovered that the station had been taken offline by some enigmatic arseholes.

At the time, players weren’t entirely sure what happened, but they suspected that griefers employed an exploit that makes it possible to shut down stations by overloading them with items called Unknown Artefacts. The net effect is akin to what would happen if a Thargoid alien attacked that station. The next day, Elite developer Frontier said in a forum post that it, too, suspects that to be the case. Frontier also apologised for adding the feature that made this exploit possible, a black market, to Dove Enigma in particular.

“We also understand that this event was a finish line for the Enigma Expedition and in hindsight we should have manually removed the black market for a limited time while the expedition took place,” Frontier wrote. “We would like to apologise to Commanders for the upset we’ve caused. As with all our in-game memorials and tributes, they are added with the very best intentions.”

The developer added, however, that there’s no need for major changes now, because players have already rallied to reverse the station shutdown. Hearing of the Enigma expedition’s plight, another group of players banded together to collect and deliver mass amounts of Meta Alloys, an item that can counteract the effects of Unknown Artefacts on stations.

“With this staggering outpouring of support, we are confident that the shutdown will be averted as Commanders arrive,” said Frontier.

For now, Dove Enigma is saved. Of course, griefers might just try to take the station offline again, but it sure doesn’t seem as though numbers – not to mention concepts such as morality, human decency, love, karma and meteors, by which they will inevitably be crushed one day – are on their side.


  • Karma, or ‘natural justice’ do not exist. All life ends – some sooner, some later. The universe is inherently unfair, as it is random and indifferent to philosophy or judgement.

    It is the endeavour of the best humans to try and bring some semblance of fairness where there is none. Kudos to these players on succeeding to this degree.

    • Who cares whether karma is real or not. If it encourages people to be decent to one another, I really don’t mind if they think there’s going to be some payoff at the end or not.

      • Shrug. Assigning the responsibility for ‘making things right’ to some cosmic power might be harmless enough, but it’s also a way of ignoring the reality that the only way things will ever ‘be made right’ is either through our intervention, or unreliable probabilities. Relying on karma to do the job for us absolves us of that responsibility, hoping that random chance will do our work for us.

  • Last I heard, the people that UA bombed (TS bombed now, I guess?) didn’t know the purpose of Dove Enigma and were just messing with a new location.

    Ooor, they could have been lying…

    • Well there seems to be a number of locations facing the same situation and I doubt they all had a charity drive on.

      It’s very hard to ascertain if people set out to grief a cancer patient or if it was an unhappy accident.

      Still, it’s good to see players banding together to do stuff like this, even if we can’t be sure of the motivations of anyone.

  • Griefers don’t care about cancer or anything else that doesn’t relate to their idea of ‘fun’ ie: being a c**t to others.

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