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Wyloch
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My life is over.

https://kerbalspaceprogram.com/

Build your own spaceship or aircraft, and then fly it. It sounds somewhat cool, but in execution you will have a nerdgasm.

You can take off, fly to other planets or moons, and land on them. But you'll have to develop your piloting skills, and develop your spacecraft with optimal fuel and thrust loads. You will also need to learn to balance orbits. And all of this is done in real time.

Search youtube for some let's play type videos, then download the demo for yourself - understand the demo only has a very limited number of parts, and is buggy.

Then cough up the $18 to buy the full version - like minecraft, it's still in alpha but you'll be set for life.

If you're an engineer or in any way into space, you must MUST check out this game.

[Edited on December 1, 2012 at 2:07 PM. Reason : ]

12/1/2012 2:05:42 PM

LaserSoup
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Actually looks pretty slick.

12/1/2012 4:43:42 PM

Wyloch
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Even your first ~10 builds which will inevitably explode are very entertaining.

12/1/2012 4:52:50 PM

HaLo
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Got sucked into playing it for 2+ hours today. Probably will cough up the cash for the full version once I learn to put a craft into orbit.

12/1/2012 6:11:37 PM

GrayFox33
TX R. Snake
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Thank you for introducing me to this.



Also, damn you for introducing me to this.

12/1/2012 6:14:58 PM

Smath74
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haven't clicked yet, because i know that when I do my life as I know it will be over.

12/1/2012 6:54:34 PM

bbehe
Burn it all down.
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Orbiter is so much better.

12/1/2012 7:03:28 PM

spöokyjon

18617 Posts
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I will definitely check this out later.

12/1/2012 7:20:19 PM

Smath74
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I'm playing the demo... having a hard time keeping the ship stable... any tips?

12/1/2012 9:17:57 PM

HaLo
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Use a sas module and then hit t before lifting off.

[Edited on December 1, 2012 at 9:27 PM. Reason : It's kind of like autopilot, it just keeps you going straight.]

12/1/2012 9:26:38 PM

Smath74
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ah! i guess i should pay attention to the tutorials

12/1/2012 9:36:10 PM

Smath74
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now... i got into space. my landing post-reentry caused my capsule to blow up... even though i activated the parachute... ideas?

12/1/2012 11:03:08 PM

HaLo
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Did you land in the water?

12/1/2012 11:08:13 PM

Smath74
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I finally broke out of orbit around the planet! I didn't set a course for any other world, but rather am just coasting aimlessly into space.

12/2/2012 12:49:09 AM

moron
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This game has been around for a while now...

12/2/2012 7:42:35 PM

Smath74
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i've gotten into a semi-stable orbit, but I eventually did re-enter. It's hard to control these damn rockets.

12/2/2012 8:19:47 PM

Nighthawk
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I thought it was $18? Its showing up as $23 right now.

12/2/2012 8:30:28 PM

Wyloch
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Oh, version 0.18 came out yesterday. Maybe they just bumped the price.

I have finally transferred orbit from Kerbin to the Mun.

Now, to land on the Mun.

Ultimate goal (years from now): build a ship and then land it once on each planet, and get all the way back to Kerbin. Not the moons...I don't think that'd even be possible.

But the newest version 0.18 adds TONS of new parts, including stuff for space stations...as in, you can launch missions to take parts up and build your station...or a massive ship that you could never build and launch on the ground...

12/2/2012 8:58:16 PM

Smath74
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is there any way to control orbits and whatnot besides eyeballing it and doing it manually?

12/2/2012 9:24:28 PM

Nighthawk
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I showed my kids some of the Youtube videos from this and they laughed hysterically at the videos of the ships going crazy and blowing up and stuff. May get it just for that. Wish I had seen this earlier when it was only $18 though.

12/3/2012 8:52:57 AM

Wyloch
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^^ Not that I know of...but I think orbit management is like one of the main gameplay features...like, the whole point...

12/3/2012 9:59:50 PM

Nighthawk
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So how much more shit is in the full version versus the free version? I downloaded that and played quite a while last night. I had fun, but I was barely ever able to get it in orbit. I had multiple issues.

1) Rocket construction in the base version is a lot harder than it needs to be. I have a real hard time eyeballing the rockets, fins, etc and make sure they are at the same height or opposite of each other. Does the full version give you a way to specify how many engines you are going to mount and then it will snap them into place. I know some of the parts snap, but shit even just trying to stack fuel tanks sometimes the stack does not want to got in evenly. WTH.

2) Rocket control issues. So I watched the tutorials and understand about using SAS. I can usually get the rocket to fly pretty good until about 20 or 30 thousand meters. Then it often goes fucking crazy and will start looping on itself or something. It happens whether I have RCS engines or not. It seems to be easier to handle if I start throttling back the engines (and I was using the thrust vectoring capable engines, but still happens quite often even then. I have still been able to get some oblong orbits that eventually re-enters the atmosphere, but the only way I have done that is to get lucky and separate the second stage from the third when it starts careening wildly. Any ideas?

12/4/2012 9:00:27 AM

Wyloch
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^ It has a lot, lot more. Like at least 5x more parts. Probably 10x more parts.

Are you using the Symmetry button? (in the free version, its near the top...in the paid, lower left) That should solve literally all of the construction issues you just described.

The paid version has a new button next to the Symmetry button - "snap." It will ensure parts you attach radially do so at a known, exact interval.

If you're having rocket control issues...I dunno. Design flaw? Trying to turn too fast? It took me about 30 tries to get into orbit, and another 10 to transfer orbit to Mun. Then another 10 to finally land on Mun. Last night I finally successfully transferred orbit to Minmus. It really just takes practice.

Does you rocket use Winglets? At 20-30k you are still in the atmosphere and winglets should take care of everything...be sure to use an Advanced SAS Unit somewhere on your rocket...doesn't matter where. Skip the regular SAS units, they're almost useless. Only use one ASAS unit, and it will automatically control all of your winglets and should solve your second problem.

Overall the paid version is much slicker. Yes, it is worth it.

12/4/2012 10:57:17 AM

Nighthawk
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I did not know shit about the symmetry button. That should fix all of my issues. I watched a few tutorials and read the ones that come with it and never saw that mentioned. After your post and reading through the Wiki though, I found that. That should make it MUCH easier to build the damn things.

12/4/2012 11:07:11 AM

Wyloch
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Ahahah...so you had an engine or two just a degree out of phase with its sister(s), inducing wicked spins at higher thinner altitudes, hence your loops/spins.

...and don't forget about winglets.

12/4/2012 12:30:22 PM

Nighthawk
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Yea I was using winglets. But the ASAS system was going bonkers trying to keep the thing straight, and was still causing it to spin like a motherfucker. I was able to compensate by tossing on like 12 or 15 winglets, plus RCS, plus thrust vectoring engines, but it still wanted to handle like shit. Now that I have seen how the symmetry system works on there that should make it SO much easier to build and get it right.

12/4/2012 12:53:04 PM

Wyloch
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Also important for orbit is speed and altitude when you perform your roll.

I'm usually around 500 m/s by 30,000 ft. I turn my heading to 90 degrees at 30,000 ft and light my second stage.

And then, most important, is when your apoapsis reaches higher than 80,000 (free of atmosphere). At that point, kill your engines, float to the Ap, line up your ship exactly prograde (yellow circle) and fire your engines again. Your orbit will quickly expand into a circle. Kill your engines when the Peripapsis also exceeds 80,000.

12/4/2012 2:14:12 PM

Smath74
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how do you see these orbit lines?

12/4/2012 7:51:58 PM

skokiaan
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^^sounds like a pro


I was happy just to get into orbit.

12/4/2012 7:56:46 PM

HaLo
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^^^ thanks for the tutorial. Finally got into orbit twice today!

^^ hit the m key

12/4/2012 9:25:25 PM

Nighthawk
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I got to Mun tonight. Was basically doing a lot of work just learning about the best time to run the engines for most effect on orbits and such. Fun stuff!

12/4/2012 10:31:04 PM

Wyloch
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We have non-destructive touchdown on Minmus! ...but not enough fuel to get back home

^ To land, get yourself in orbit around the Mun. Ensure your orbit is between 50,000 and 100,000. By now I assume you've learned to float to the Ap or Pe point, and then burn prograde (yellow circle) or retrograde (180 degrees from yellow circle) to very rapidly and conveniently change your current orbit.

Of course, if your orbit is very circular, then being at Ap or Pe is not really relevant. That's the best place to be.

Anyway to land, align your ship to exactly retrograde and burn full throttle. Your orbit will begin to collapse quickly. Eventually it will become so tight that it will look almost like a single line from your ship down to the surface - that's what you want. Stop the burn. Now you are simply falling straight for the surface.

Again, turn yourself exactly retrograde - because you are falling straight down, this should be at the very top of the gimbal (blue half). Every so often, do a burn to slow yourself down. Rinse and repeat until you finally reach the surface and touchdown no faster than 12 m/s.

When you are about to touch the ground, your gimbal vector indications will go haywire - ignore them, do not panic.

Lastly - your altitude meter up top relates to sea level...Mun has lots of terrain far above that. For example, my first landing was actually on the ground at 1400 m. The only way to know for sure is by sight - you should not be using the map mode at all while descending, there is no point.

[Edited on December 5, 2012 at 12:39 AM. Reason : whew]

12/5/2012 12:33:05 AM

Smath74
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Quote :
"^^ hit the m key"

holy shit. i did not even realize this map mode existed. I've been doing this the super ridiculously hard (and most often unsuccessful) way.

12/5/2012 10:02:28 AM

Wyloch
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........wow do you guys even use the tutorials from the main menu?

[Edited on December 5, 2012 at 11:44 AM. Reason : ]

12/5/2012 11:43:46 AM

Nighthawk
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^Yep, just apparently missed the thing on symmetry. Fixing that made this shit SO much easier.

12/5/2012 12:44:58 PM

Wyloch
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As a side note I really love the Hitchhiker-esque humor in all the part descriptions. The whimsical flavor of the game does just enough to suspend reality and be enjoyable but not define a story or role for myself; it's just sandboxy enough.

12/5/2012 1:13:26 PM

skokiaan
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Who reads directions?

12/5/2012 10:11:49 PM

Smath74
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Quote :
"........wow do you guys even use the tutorials from the main menu?"

i scrolled through them quickly. missed the part about the map view.

12/5/2012 11:21:51 PM

jcdomini
Veteran
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Been playing this for a few months now - probably since around 0.16 or so. Love the new docking feature and all the resource management additions of 0.18!

I put up a basic space station core yesterday with plenty of nodes for expansion, and proceeded to haul up a giant fuel tank to dock to it in order to refuel crafts on future visits. Just a note, if you're going to use RCS thrusters to maneuver things, make sure to place them at least somewhat symmetrically about your CG, or you'll have a hell of a time moving things around in a linear fashion and not inducing spins. I only had RCS on one side of my tank (the ferry craft, keeping the tank clean and pretty looking) and that thing took a solid hour to dock properly.

Tonight, I took it upon myself to build an interplanetary lander and took it up to orbit, only to find no other bodies were in a good launch window - went ahead and docked to my station instead to top off my fuel tanks and wait things out:




After this, I was gonna call it quits, so I hit Esc and accidentally hit "End Flight" So now my space station with docked fuel tank and lander are gone Oh well, looks like I get to shoot for bigger and better next time!

12/7/2012 3:44:36 AM

Smath74
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picked this back up this afternoon... achieved my first stable polar orbit (quite by accident... still learning the coordinates and whatnot... was going for an equatorial orbit )

12/7/2012 6:25:34 PM

Smath74
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ok... on the same mission I practiced circulization of my orbit & learned how to execute a transfer orbit.

then went from a polar orbit out to mun. orbiting it now... less than half my fuel remains in my last stage... we will see if i can make it back home

12/7/2012 8:37:05 PM

bbehe
Burn it all down.
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In the full version, are there any autopilot features, like automatically turn prograde?

12/7/2012 9:48:46 PM

thx1138
Veteran
301 Posts
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holy shit, this game looks boring as fuck!

12/7/2012 9:50:09 PM

Smath74
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landed on Mun.

with just my upper stage. (haven't designed a lander yet )

The engine was knocked off upon landing... but the capsule [was the only thing that] survived... so there are now living Kerbalites on Mun. They just aren't going home.

12/7/2012 11:15:33 PM

El Nachó
special helper
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This motherfucker made a ship that can go to Mun, pick up a pod from a previous mission, take off, and throw that shit back to the home planet.

12/7/2012 11:29:05 PM

Wyloch
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^^^ We can't all be 8 year olds.

12/8/2012 1:13:02 AM

bbehe
Burn it all down.
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If you're looking for something more advanced, look at a simulation called Orbiter.

12/8/2012 7:42:52 AM

Wyloch
All American
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^ wow it looks sweet. Definitely will.

12/8/2012 10:38:34 AM

wawebste
All American
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Currently 25% off through December 24th

12/21/2012 11:09:52 PM

jcgolden
Suspended
1394 Posts
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um yea... how long has minecraft been around??? is ponzi scheme

12/21/2012 11:16:45 PM

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