We launched the Elite Archives website in May 2014 to showcase the great history of this epic game series from the original BBC Microcomputer version of Elite to the then forthcoming Elite: Dangerous. Since that time we have added to our ever-growing games collection, as well received fantastic donations to the Archives from both fans and Frontier Developments including an original '80s Firebird logo T-Shirt and pin badge, the very first printed proof copy of Elite: Dangerous - Out of the Darkness by T. James, and a collection of prototype Elite: Dangerous mugs and a T-shirt.
Website updates are mostly on hold at the moment as we work towards finalising the Elite Archives book.
Elite Archives Book
The book is currently being finalised and is expected to be available for general purchase in both digital and print formats later this year.
You can follow us on Twitter at @EliteArchives for news and updates.
Elite is the seminal space trading and space combat computer game written and developed by Ian Bell, David Braben and Acornsoft. It was published by Acornsoft and officially released for the BBC Microcomputer and Acorn Electron on the 20th of September 1984.
Above: Elite creators David Braben (left) and Ian Bell (right) (1985). (source: unknown)
Elite was available on many platforms including the BBC Micro, Acorn Electron, Acorn Archimedes, Commodore 64, Apple II E, Tatung Einstein, MSX, Amstrad CPC, Sinclair ZX Spectrum, Amiga, Atari ST and IBM PC. Depending on the platform, it was available on either cassette or disk, and in some cases both.
Many versions of these games were packaged with an assortment of additional material including the flight training manuals, a keyboard overlay, a quick key reference card, a poster, special offers and even a novella by Robert Holdstock.
The Elite Archives' mission is to provide a central record of every version and every variant of Elite and its successors: Frontier, First Encounters and Elite: Dangerous.
This project aims to acquire and document every version and share our collection with the Elite community through the Elite Archives website.
Above: A recent photograph showing some of our collection.
We currently hold over 52 different variants of Elite and its successors in the vault and we will periodically unlock the vault to bring a new version to the Archive's public viewing area.
We are always on the lookout for any missing versions so please check out our contact details at the end of this page and see if you can help locate some of our missing versions.
This version of Elite Archives website officially launched on the first of May 2014.
Follow us on Twitter @elitearchives for news and updates….
On the 6th November 2012 Frontier Developments launched a Kickstarter to help fund the development of the fourth game in the Elite saga, Elite: Dangerous. The game met it's funding goal in January 2013.
Elite: Dangerous was officially released on the 16th December 2014 and is available for purchase HERE.
The Elite: Dangerous Kickstarter can be found here.
ELITE: Official Fiction
As part of the Elite: Dangerous Kickstarter, a number of writer's packs were offered which provided licences to produce officially sanctioned works of Elite fiction.
Individual authors, as well as publishing house Gollancz, pledged to receive writer's packs to write officially sanctioned fiction set in the Elite universe.
T.James's Out of the Darkness is now available …
Left: The working cover for Out of the Darkness by T. James.
A number of individual authors joined together in a Fantastic Books Kickstarter to fund both hardback and paperback print editions of five of the official Elite novels, as well as produce professional audiobooks of the same. Funding was reached on the 1st of January 2014. Books and audiobooks are now available for purchase or pre-order from FANTASTIC BOOKS.
The Archives will include detailed information on all versions of official Elite fiction including e-book, regular paperback, special edition paperback, regular hardback, special edition hardback, and audiobook.
The Archives will also include a special look at selected behind the scenes proof copies of the novels and audiobooks, as well as coverage of many of the limited edition collectables such as signed art, coffee mugs, flight certificates, embroidered flight gloves and signed scripts that were available during the Fantastic Books Kickstarter.
After contributing over £13,000 to secure the publishing rigths to three novels set in the Elite: Dangerous world, Gollancz announced on 1st of April 2014 that the ebook versions of Elite: Wanted by Gavin Deas, Elite: Nemorensis by Simon Spurrier, and Elite: Docking is Difficult by Gideon Defoe would be released simultaeously on the 15th of May 2014.
Gollancz further announced that collector's hardbacks and retail relase versions would be published alongside the retail release of the Elite: Dangerous game later in 2014.
Further information relating to the Gollancz tie-in novels can be found in the press release.
Allen Stroud's Lave: Revolution 2nd edition is available now on Amazon.
The Ongoing Search….
We already have a large collection of Elite and Frontier games including some international versions.
We are now seeking assistance from Elite fans to help complete our archives.
If you have any of the following versions of Elite, Frontier or First Encounters that you would like to sell, then we would love to hear from you:
1. Elite MSX version with Firebird box.
2. First Encounters - Any non-UK version other than French and USA.
3. Non-English versions of Elite by Acornsoft, Firebird or Hybrid.
Twitter: You can follow us on twitter @EliteArchives for news and updates