Ever since Elite cruised off into that great space scrap yard in the sky, one of the great holy grails of gaming has been finding a worthy successor to David Braben's space borne epic.
Egosoft's X series has certainly been one of the strongest contenders and with part three now readying for a launch window this year, a whole armada of new screens have materialised to prepare you for the space race to come.
X3: Reunion is looking to build on the success of its PC predecessors, with spanking new looks courtesy of DirectX 9 tech featuring pixel shaders and both bump and specula mapping, which is probably why these shots look so saucy.
Over 200 new spaceships also await your orders, with up to ten times greater detail than ever before and a new set of space borne environments to explore including asteroid fields, gaseous nebulas, star ship graveyards and low orbital space stations. Egosoft is even promising a completely "re-designed X universe" apparently - now that must have taken a bit of work - perhaps they got a few Polish plumbers in?
X3: Reunion is set for a launch date this autumn on both PC and Xbox. In the meantime enjoy the new screens.