Kerbal Space Program

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Kerbal Space Program

    • Geoff Nicholson
      Participant

      I’m uncertain how many of you may have heard Kerbal Space Program.  It’s a game where you actually learn rocket science, and send your liitle green men into space to explore the vast unknown.  It’s got a large following, and a lot of mods too.  Who else plays?

      I just got started and had set up this awesome orbital transfer setup wherein I took my kerbals (including Space Ace Jebadaiah Kerbin) on a grand tour of the inner solar system (Kerbin, Mun, Minmas) in a module built to be the equivalent of Apollo 8, before disaster struck!  The orbital path neglected to include the altitude of the mountains on the Mun and all three kerbals were buried in a grave of their own making on the Mun.

       Thus far, here are my achievements.  This image will should update as I progress through the game, but for now, I’ve got a probe orbiting Kerbin, and a mission lost on the Mun.

      Geoff

    • Sgt. Dutch
      Participant

      I’ve been watching Lets Plays of this by the Yogscast. Gotta say I love the kerbals. They’re such industrious little fella’s.

    • Geoff Nicholson
      Participant

      @Sgt. Dutch said:
      I’ve been watching Lets Plays of this by the Yogscast. Gotta say I love the kerbals. They’re such industrious little fella’s.

      Check out Scott Manley’s Youtubes (he has a bajillion videos going back to the earleriest versions of the game) and has plenty of tutorials and tours through the game for you to see what’s happening.  I don’t think they really provide ‘spoilers’, because you still have to get your rocket out there yourself… and that’s all the fun!

      And now… Off to Moho!

    • Geoff Nicholson
      Participant

      v.0.24 is out! And it’s got x64 support for you all with swanky computers.

      The new challenge system is a pretty cool addition to the Career mode, but it does mean that you can go bankrupt now (gotta watch how many failed launches you make!) . Some of the challenges are sort of hard (do you have any idea how hard it is to get to 20km altitude, and only be at 300m/s velocity?) and some of them are weirdly-implemented (how DO you test the small landing gear at an altitude of 18km?).

      But anyhoo. Jeb awaits!

    • Cadeon
      Participant

      I’ve been playing with the contracts and I think I like them. What I don’t like is my own inability to play kerbal. 

       

      I’m horrible at making orbits work. I’m horrible at planning flights, I don’t see how to plan anything in advance. And therefore I’m pretty much horrible at the later contacts and challenges. 

       

      I could probably watch some youtube and get better, but I’m too busy/lazy. I could also play more and learn, but I’ve had KSP over 15 months now- and logged less than 30 hrs. What makes that worse is KSP is my favorite, most played game. Life has been a bit busy. 

       

      Is there some kind of mod out there that makes it easier for the idiots like me?

    • Geoff Nicholson
      Participant

      I really like MechJeb which can tell you the delta-V for each stage while in the VAB, and then it can do a lot of other orbital mechanics to adjust your orbits to keep it going. The decisions MechJeb makes are sometimes inefficient fuel-wise, so using MechJeb to go to other planets will probably require more delta-V…
      MechJeb Forum Thread
      The good news is that MechJeb has a semi-automatic mode, so can either do it for you, or let you follow it’s guidance.

      There is no built-in budgeting system, so being able to plan ahead isn’t really a thing. You put some fuel in your ship, put into orbit, and then hope you have guessed correctly. The good news is that a lot of nerdy people have been playing the crap out of the game and taking notes. That, and some people have applied legit rocket-science to the Kerbol system, and come up with some handy tools. Which can be shamelessly ganked from /r/KerbalSpaceProgram, or the KSP forums.

      Interplanetary Transit Window Calculator: http://ksp.olex.biz/
      Launch Window Calculator https://alexmoon.github.io/ksp/
      Aerobraking Calculator https://alterbaron.github.io/ksp_aerocalc/

      The delta-v map of the Kerbol System
      https://i.imgur.com/UUU8yCk.png


      [Image Can Not Be Found]

    • Cadeon
      Participant

      Just wanted to mention I’ve been MechJebbing and I now find KSP a lot more playable and enjoyable. I’ve certainly still cratered some Kerbals, or lost them in space. But a lot of what used to be incredibly difficult or impossible for me is much more available now. Thank you, Reverend. 

    • Geoff Nicholson
      Participant

      So the beta dropped. Kerbal v0.90 is “Beta than Eva”, and has a lot of useful additions to career mode, and I’ve been playing it a lot recently. There are a lot of little things I forgot were out there, like you can adjust how much go is in your fuel tanks and solid rockets!

      Solid rockets are cheap! If you’re going broke on your contracts, you can use a bunch of disposable SRBs instead of loosing super-expensive liquid rocket engines to hard-landings. And theoretically, if you drop anything off the craft before you crack 20km, it *will* be recovered because it hits the ground. If you put 3 parachutes on your liquid boosters, you can reclaim the 7k from dropping them softly in the sea. I’ll have to do more research to see what happens when you drop a stage above 20km and then get 3km away from it (because parts which aren’t controlled at that range don’t render, and are essentially deleted).

      Now, to go rescue Buster Kerman who got himself into orbit…. without a capsule.

    • Geoff Nicholson
      Participant

      1.0 has released. I’ve downloaded it and crashed a number of spaceplanes, so nothing new to report there. However, some of the (mis)adventures were apparently caused by an enhanced physics engine… so that’s new. Also of note, there are a bunch of newly-stock parts which were all plugins before, so yay fewer fiddly bits!

      As ususal, all the patches, ports, plugins, and saves for the prior versions break on 1.0, so give it a couple of weeks before installing MechJeb and the rest of the improvements, and if youv’e got an awesome career mode saved up, don’t upgrade into the same folder!

      So here’s to more adventures to the solar system, and more explosions!

    • Geoff Nicholson
      Participant

      Um.
      So I installed 1.2.2, and all of a sudden I’m getting attachment errors, and stock parts being listed as ‘experimental’ when in Science mode. I went as far as starting a new savegame for this version and it’s still acting up. Pretty sure this isn’t a feature; think I inadverdently implemented a bug.

      In other news, the probe functionality is greatly enhanced; I’m looking forward to playing around with it more!

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