Elite: Dangerous will be getting its first expansion this Holiday entitled Horizons. It promises new gameplay, new worlds to explore, as well as more features releasing 2016. Horizons won't be dropping in one large chunk as we're used to with most expansions, but will be spread out with different updates—think of it almost like a season pass—the first of which is known as Planetary Landings.
Planetary Landings will introduce players to planetary surfaces with the first "Surface Recon Vehicle" to drive around in called the "Scarab." Players will search planets and moons for strongholds, hostile forces, mineral deposits, and more. This can be done by yourself or with friends.
More specifics on Horizons will be coming soon.
The most confusing and outrage causing part of the Horizons announcement is its pricing structure. It appears as though there is no way to purchase Horizons separately, as purchasing Horizons will include the base game as well. However, not all Elite: Dangerous owners will need to purchase Horizons to receive it. Rather than detail it all to you, Frontier Support over on the Elite: Dangerous subreddit put together a handy flowchart.
As you can see, if you already own the Expansion Pass, have Elite Dangerous: Premium Beta or Elite Dangerous: Alpha Edition, Horizons will be given to you for free. You can only purchase the Expansion Pass still, which will set you back $195.
However, if you own any other edition of Elite: Dangerous, the minimum amount you will have to pay is $44.99 to purchase Horizons. If you do not own Elite: Dangerous, you can purchase the base game and Horizons for $59.99. Details on other versions are included in the flowchart.
Keep in mind, the loyalty discount offered to those that own Elite: Dangerous already will only be available until shortly after Horizons launches, according to that Reddit post above. As of now, Frontier has not announced any plans to allow consumers to purchase Horizons separately.
The pricing structure is confusing to say the least. The main complaint seems to be that new players will be able to get the game for $60, while others who may have purchased the original game at $60 now need an additional $45 to own the same content, paying almost double. That's pretty steep, but $45 is not too far off expansion prices.
It's an odd discussion worth of more than I will give it here, but consider that it would have cost someone a total of $270 for World of Warcraft if they were first adopters all along the way versus $70 now for the same content.