By the fans - for the fans

English Version Issue 3 English Version

December 2001

Zur deutschen Ausgabe


  • Intro
  • Interview with Bernd Lehahn
  • X-Con Review
  • What's new on
  • DirectX 8.1 released
  • Fan Fiction
  • Readers Corner
  • Imprint
  • Intro

    Here we go again

    First of all thanks to all of you who sent us feedback and helped us to become even better! It seems like we were finally able to make the news readable for nearly everyone, except for those who read their mail online with web clients, it is impossible to optimize the news for all those countless freemail services, sorry. If you are one of these users, please go here: .
    Now for the content of this issue:
    We've got another highlight for you: an interview with Bernd Lehahn on X² and Online-Universe, that will answer lots of questions and leaves room for even more exciting questions.
    For those among you who weren't able to take part in the X-Con we've got a small report on what happened and what was shown and we list all the mainpages where you can get more info and pictures. Next we have some articles on what is new on and a surprise for the fans. Last but not least there is good news from Microsoft.
    As usual to everybody who has read so far: Have fun with issue 3 of the X-Universe News!

    back to top

    Interview with Bernd Lehahn

    We received several mails asking us to bring more details on X² - The Threat than just a screenshot now and then. As a sign that we try to realize your wishes we are proud to present an interview with Bernd Lehahn that will definitely start lots of discussions and speculations, besides the questions it will answer.

    Hi Bernd!
    We appreciate it that you could find the time for this interview.

    Well is X2-The Khaak threat the official title of the game or just a working title?

    X² - The threat will be the title of the game.

    As we all know, many people ask about returning home. Do you plan to include the way home in the game?

    It is not really decided yet, but it is possible that you get a chance to get back home in the game, I can't really tell yet... What I can tell you, is that X² holds many exciting missions and a real plot you can stick to, just like in BTF.

    What about the improvements in X²? Could you reveal to us some new aspects of the game?

    Whoa, that's a tricky one ;) Well, you see - X² has a plethora of new features, more than I can recall right now. So I'll give you some examples:

    The menu system has been enriched with some new things and is easier to handle.
    The NPC abilities have been drastically improved, the AI is much better in fighting and trading. We've added some new weapons and missiles and also some new ship upgrades. We have refreshed the whole palette of ships in the game. Ships are more task-specific now and will give you the chance to experience them to the max ;)

    Some players said that the slow beginning of the game was a disadvantage for newbies. What do you think about that?

    Well, I was asked to improve the starting position of the player - and we have... We will give the player a better start-off but having more variety in the game the old "veterans" will still have a lot to do before gaining vast riches again...

    We were also told that most X-players find it too easy to fight in X...

    (laughs): Well - wait until you have encountered the Khaak!

    Did you change the X-universe, or did you leave it like it was?

    We have extended the whole universe but still keep the "old" sectors as an integral part of it, you'll see many systems and stations at the old positions while still finding many new ones. But we redesigned them to a large extent. The stations look marvellous now.

    What about the ships?

    As I said, there will be new ships and upgrades (some only while doing missions) as well as many old ships and equipment.

    As some of us have seen at the conventions, you added some new effects to the game, which will improve the fabulous atmosphere of the game...

    We've added nebular effects to the game, as well as large asteroid fields you can traverse and you can even fly through some of the asteroids. Wait until it is released ;) Thanks to the 3D power we can now use in common PC's, the X-universe has become even more beautiful than it ever was.

    As you told us, X2 won't have a multi-player option. Is it planned to release X-Online as an upgrade?

    No. Both games will have very much in common but they are different to produce. X2 is a single player game and a sequel to XBTF/XT, while X-Online (or as we now call it) will be an online multi-player game. However, both are found in the same universe.

    Could you tell us some details about

    The most important thing about X2OL (as we also used to call it) is the "component-system". You can design ships and factories exactly how you want to and that's an advantage in a multi-player universe - you'll rarely find a similar ship or factory to yours. This feature was too big and a waste of resources for X2, but it will be a definite hit in X2OL!
    Another difference is the support for player enforced law systems (i.e. guilds) which is a counterpart for the NPC-races in X. We will add some more small improvements into X2OL and all this would be too different to add in X2.

    X2 is on schedule for mid-2002, will you finish it on time?

    We will release it for many platforms, but not all versions will be released at the same time.

    What about X2OL?

    It is hard to say. We've been working on it for a long time - we're testing it right now at the server/client level. We're doing our work but we'll never get really "finished" anyway. Even when we release the game, we'll definitely change and improve some details from time to time... All I can say now is that we are currently looking for investors, which would allow us to release it sooner. Currently we're financing it on our own... It is definite that X2OL won't be out before X2 - The Threat.

    Last question - Will there be more sequels to X?

    (grins) If X Series continue to be a success, why not :) ?

    Thank you for the interview!

    back to top

    X-Con Review

    X-Cons are over - a summary

    On October 20th 2001 X'ers from all over the UK gathered at Jodrell Bank, which is just south of Manchester. The actual convention started at about 12pm/1pm but many X'ers arrived earlier, starting from about 10:30. Darren Astles, aka Steel arrived early to set things up (with help from Steve and Iron Orchid). Computers and projection equipment along with the required cables etc were all put in their place. As X'ers arrived, Steel's daughter who did a fantastic job, signed them in and photos' were taken of those that agreed. As soon as X'ers were checked in, they received the name badge and began to mingle and socialise with other X'ers. It sure was great meeting the people you talk to on the Forum in the flesh.

    Egosoft eventually took over and lots of good questions were asked by X'ers and answered by Bernd, Martin or Helge. It was a great opportunity to find out more about Online Universe and X2 and the already infamous Khaak!

    The X2 demonstration was really good and looks to be running well, also the computer running it was using windows XP and X2 was working great. A useful session where a small group of interested X'ers listened to Bernd talk about KC programming language, and Bernd took suggestions about how to improve the layout of the tutorial pages on Devnet.

    After the main X-Con event, it was onto the evening get together. This was great as no one ever seemed to stop talking to each other! It was a great little social gathering in a nice public house not far from the Travel Lodge that had been invaded and taken over by X'ers! The beer flowed and the food was good. Overall I can say that I had a fantastic time as did all other X'ers!

    Commander Gold (CG)

    Pictures from the english X-Con

    Pictures from the german X-Con

    back to top

    New on


    If you browse the forums regularly you will know about the LinkDB.
    This database is an interactive collection of links to sites relating to X, this LinkDB is split into several categories like "Official Sites", "X-Fansites", "Clan-Sites" and "Press about X".

    Every registered user may post his link suggestion; it has to fit into one of the categories or at least match the genre (see "Off Topic"). To avoid abuse of this database every link has to be accepted by an admin, before it is available to the whole X-Community.

    How to use the LinkDB:

    Where is this LinkDB located?
    You'll find it after logging in on the Egosoft main page

    How do I submit a link?
    Use the link "Create Link" in the upper right corner of the page. Now choose a category and language for your link and enter sitename, address (URL) and if possible a short description (not required, but helps others). Now click on "Submit New Link", that's it.

    Additionally every user may rate the quality of a linked site to help others to find the best information and other x-related sites. This is discussed a lot, as some people think "can members rate their own pages better than others and so falsify the result?"
    Martin Ehrlich aka GdVzSdRf (the one who programmed the LinkDB in his free time) comments: "The more people rate a site the more accurate the shown rating will be. You can view the number of votes in the link properties."

    How do I rate other sites?
    Change to "Manage-Mode" (again upper right corner) to view the properties of a link, now you can vote on it.

    Interactive FAQ

    Not that new anymore but still quite unknown is the FaqDB (again programmed by Martin Ehrlich)
    The purpose of this database is to provide new players or players that are having problems with help on general questions. What seems to scare a lot of potential users is the seemingly complicated usage of the database, in fact it's relativly easy:

    Where can I find this FaqDB?
    Like the LinkDB you can find it on the Egosoft mainpage

    I've got a question that is not answered in the FaqDB or I want to share my knowledge with others, what should I do?
    At the moment a level 3 (or higher) access to the Egosoft Developer Network is required (simple subscription with mail address is enough)
    Now you can select "Edit FAQ" from the DevNet pages. In the upper right corner you'll find the link "New FAQ" click on it and enter your question and, if possible, an answer. Now chose a category and language for your entry. The next step would be to translate your entry (or let others translate it for you) click on "Add Version" and enter the translation for your question/answer.
    This also works for other entries, if you find an untranslated entry and want to add a translation to it.

    I have now submitted my question, what next?
    For your entry to become public it is required that an admin accepts it, admin users are browsing the database all the time, so if your entry is ok, it should become public relatively quickly. As soon as the state of your entry is "For Public" it is available to the whole X-Communinty.

    Hopefully this little introduction to the FaqDB has helped you and you will begin to fill it with useful tips.

    Note for people who don't have/want a level 3 account:
    Of course you may submit your questions/answers by mail to the editorship, they'll be entered into the DB soon.


    Order now

    Order now

    Wanna have such a X² T-Shirt?
    That and much more can be found in the new egosoft online shop at an attractive price. Don't hesitate, order today! Stocks are limited!
    Order now

    The online shop is the latest work of Martin Ehrlich.
    Here you now have the possibility to order merchandise (sorry, english games are sold out) like T-Shirts / Sweatshirts and Poster.

    To the shop

    back to top

    DirectX 8.1 released

    Good news from Microsoft

    Finally Microsoft released DirectX 8.1. As promised the bug that caused stuttering speech and that affected every user of DirectX 8.0(a) or Windows 2000 is solved.

    DirectX 8.1 english for Windows 98/ME (11,6 MB)
    DirectX 8.1 english for Windows NT/2000 (7,57 MB)

    back to top

    Fan Fiction

    Fan Storys on X² CD!

    As you might have read, there is a chance that fan fiction will make it onto the X² CD.
    X-Universe News can now confirm this!
    If you have written a good story it may be published with X². In general every story is welcome, as long as it sticks to some basic rules:
    It should have a good level of quality and grammar and should fit to the current and future fiction of the X-Universe, also it should not conflict with the x novel and its sequel by Helge Kautz. As most of you won't have been able to read this novel, you should ask Steel the English fiction co-ordinator. He will answer your questions and respond to your submissions. Anything he cannot answer (bearing in mind some of the fiction is still secret) will be passed to the "master of X-fiction" ;-) Helge, if things you do in your story are possible or not, these two will certainly help you with any clarification.
    Sure it's easier to handle a single characters destiny rather than letting race "abc" invade the universe and wipe out the Teladi ;-). Ask if you have questions, you will get an answer!
    There is no fixed closing date yet, but X-Universe News will keep you up to date.

    Happy writing!

    back to top

    Readers Corner

    Questions, Comments, Wishes

    Looks like you like this idea; we would like to thank you for your feedback and hope for more! We have chosen the question below and also got an official answer:

    Will nebulas affect your ship systems(comm, radar...) while you're inside?

    "Yes. Many people wanted such a feature, we will most likely combine it with the possibility to cloak ships." (Bernd Lehahn)

    As you can see, the wishes of the players are taken serious. You ask us, we do our best to respond with an offical response.

    back to top

    Additional Contacts


    EGOSOFT / Deutschland -

    Editorship english:
    Chris F. / Great Britain -

    Editorship german:
    Michael B., Nürnberg / Germany - (mb)
    Peter Biner W., Braderup / Germany - (pbw)

    Contact the editorship:

    Darren Astles -

    Translations and proofreading:
    Herbert Hohenburger -
    Jonathan Handby -

    Unsubcsribe from X-Universe NEWSletter

    You don't wnat to receive the X-Universe NEWS by mail? Then use the account data you got from EGOSOFT with their last newsletter and login here: there go to 'Account Data' and unselect 'receive XNEWS by mail'.

    Former issues in the archive!

    back to top