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Elite Dangerous Close Quarter Combat

CQC is Elite Dangerous' instant-action PvP arena where two teams or individuals compete in a multiplayer match. It is designed for users to quickly join and be straight into action without the learning curve required of the main game, and as such CQC does not impact the normal Elite Dangerous universe apart from some small perks (e.g. earning credits & rank).

Players in-game will be able to earn additional equipment such as better weapons for use in CQC-only, but some small items might be transferable to the normal Elite Dangerous universe, such as unique ranks or decals. Credits earned in CQC can be transferred to your main commander.


Experience points are gained by playing matches, and you will increase in rank when you gain experience. High-rank does not indicate high-skill though, it merely indicates that you have played a lot. The game uses a hidden “BattleRanking” score to rate your skill and match you against other similarly skilled players.

From the forums

For matchmaking we use something we call a 'BattleRating' which is a number that dictates how good you are, it's calculated using an ELO ranking system. When you first start playing CQC we don't know how good you are, so everyone starts with the same number; it's only by playing that we work out how good you are. So while you may be put up against someone of rank 25 in your very first match, it's because they've played for a while and their BattleRating is similar to yours, therefore in our system you're a good match up. Of course by the time you reach rank 25 you may be much better than that other player making it a lot less likely for you to be matched against them.

Rank XP
1 0
2 ?
3 ?
4 ?
5 ?
6 ?
7 ?
8 ?
9 ?
10 1070 XP
11 1150 XP
12 1237 XP
13 1329 XP
14 1429 XP
15 1536 XP
16 ?
17 ?
18 ?
19 ?
20 ?
21 ?
22 ?
23 ?
24 ?
25 ?
26 ?
27 ?
28 ?
29 ?
30 ?
Event XP Added Notes
Winner 200 XP ?
MVP 100 XP ?
Assistant 50 XP ?
Finisher 50 XP ?
Bouncing Back 25 XP ?
Good Effort 25 XP For coming last & scoring the least
Payback 25 XP ?
Multi-kill 25 XP ?
Quick Kill 25 XP ?
Try Harder 10 XP ?

Ships & Loadouts

In Elite Dangerous CQC you gain access to different ships and loadouts when you gain levels.

Loadout Unlocks at Ship Hardpoints Utility
1 Rank 1 F63 Condor 2x Pulse Lasers Chaff Launcher
2 ? Sidewinder 2x Tracking Pulse Laser Shield Booster
3 ? Eagle 2x Beam Laser Heatsink Launcher
4 Rank 11 F63 Condor ? ?
5 Rank 12 Sidewinder ? ?
6 Rank 17 Eagle ? ?
7 Rank 21 F63 Condor ? ?
8 Rank 24 Sidewinder ? ?
9 Rank 31 Eagle ? ?

Each loadout can be modified by customising the different hard points, utility mounts, bulk heads, internal components and so on of your selected ship with different modules that are earned by gaining ranks.

Frontier Developments have said in that the equipment that is unlocked is not “better” per se than anything else, you just get an opportunity to tailor your ship to your style:

We’ve also had players mentioning that the higher your rank, the better the equipment you unlock. You do unlock new equipment as you progress but the equipment you unlock is different equipment which allows you to tailor your ship to play to your style. Each new module and weapon has its positives and negatives, meaning that someone of Level 50 won't have better equipment to Level 1 players, but they will have a lot more choice of what to put on their ship.


Map Modes Description
Asteria Point TDM Station close to a star
Cluster Compound CTF, TDM Multiple platforms with tunnels floating in an asteroid belt.
Ice Field TDM Tightly packed ice asteroids
Elevate CTF Large central cylinder-shaped station with spare asteroids.

Game Modes

Mode Description
Team Conflict A simple 4-vs-4 team death match.
Death Match A free-for-all death match where it is every player fighting everyone else.
Capture The Flag A 4-vs-4 mode where you have to attack and defend your team's “flag” (actually an orb).

Name confusion

CQC has also been referred to by the game's producers as “Close Quarter Championship” and “Close Quarter Combat Championship”.