Rosco P. Coltrane

The strange case of KSP burn out

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Posted (edited)

KSP is a strange game, unique in many ways for sure. And one of those is, to me, the unique way in which it annoys me... Let me explain.

In other games I'm either having fun, or I'm not. It's instantaneous, I'm playing and I think "Bah! Time to stop playing this sh... erm, game."

But KSP is different. Often times I'm playing until I realize I'm tired and liquided off (or rather, I've been tired and liquided off for the past two hours!), at which point I say to my self "why the heck are you still playing?! Go do something else!"... and then I set to complete one more contract, send that one probe, land something or check that one rover I left on a cliff... and the cycle resets itself... until an hour later when it comes back to me "wait, wasn't I fed up?" and I finally close the game for the day.

It's like the games hooks you in to the point where you lose the ability to gauge your own enjoyment of the thing. It's the weirdest thing because you'd think that in order to hook you in, the game would make you happier, not angrier. :D

Does this happen to you as well? If not with KSP, any other game?

 

EDIT: "liquided"? Speaking of strange things KSP-related... the forum has a very strange way of changing your words...

Edited by Rosco P. Coltrane
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3 minutes ago, Rosco P. Coltrane said:

...

EDIT: "liquided"? Speaking of strange things KSP-related... the forum has a very strange way of changing your words...

Uh oh, whats actually in those tanks of LIQUID Oxygen?

I've definitely noticed the weird burnout/obsession loop with KSP.

Lately I haven't had the big blocks of time to devote to playing the game so I spend my time lurking on the forum, updating mod (that I don't get to play with) then wondering why I spend so much time maintaining and worrying about a game that I rarely get to even play...

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I can't really play it without forum challenges because my imagination is at freezing point and even when i come with something i give up waaay early

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I got burned out due to fundamental game limitations.

I've always been irked by the fact that the player is the one having to physically fly stuff.  I've used MechJeb and other mods to deal with some of it but at the end of the day I want my kerbals to have to actually do something other than being a passenger/stat boost.

I've got well over 1000 hours in the game and I will sometimes still boot it up into sandbox to spend a day or three designing stuff.  I just get burned out so quickly though because there is nothing "more" to do.

Anyway, I don't want to sidetrack too much so I'll leave it there.  I desperately WANT to find something to light that spark for KSP again.  I think I'm just done with it though.

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I recently installed a life support mod, and that gave me a new challenge in ship design.

But my biggest thrill I've had is installing the Final Frontier Mod, which assigns individual Kerbals ribbons for mission accomplishments. 

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KSP burnout seems to last longer as well. When I have too much of a game I tend to put it down then come back to it a few months later with new fervor, but KSP has been different.

I've been burned out on this game for a long time. :-/

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For me, KSP is an intense mental challenge to play, Designing, mission planning, thinking of redundancies and redundancies for the redundancies. then flying and creating maneuver nodes to complete my designed mission. Most times  i'm up for the mental strain but i get in a funk where i want to play and i keep thinking about the game but i just can't devote the gray matter to it. For instance, right now, i haven't played KSP for 3 or 4 weeks but i've visited the forum everyday. I want to play but i'd just rather do something less mentally exhausting and therefore can't bring myself to firing it up. 

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15 hours ago, Rosco P. Coltrane said:

EDIT: "liquided"? Speaking of strange things KSP-related... the forum has a very strange way of changing your words...

Choose less harsh words and the forum will leave them alone. :)

 

I get the burnout thing, too. Same with the Civilization series (my runner up for hours played), I can have had quite enough but just need to play one more turn.

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Yes, i get this KSP burnout too... that is, why i stopped playing regularly and just come back to the game, when i have a great mission idea... then i play it for a month or two and back to different things. Currently i am playing Elite Dangerous, but i am really looking forward to the next KSP update and the historical mission add on. I also like the new parts. I think the new visuals of tanks, capsules and engines alone will bring a lot of fun back to me.

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Posted (edited)

Whenever I start to feel the pangs of burnout, I either go out and find some new mods to try out/mess around with or I go and see what I can do to improve performance on the visual type mods I currently have installed (namely, SVE/EVE/Scatterer/Texture Replacer, etc.) via changing settings, configs or using different texture files.  Or I'll go around and mess with Sound Track Editor/find new tracks to add to KSP buildings/scenes). 

Also, my evenings rarely go as planned....sometimes I come in with the goal of playing for a few hours but end up tweaking a mod to get it 'just right' instead.  Other times I plan to work on editing mods but end up playing instead.  I get easily distracted!

But all in all, I keep coming back to the KSP well.  Few games keep me interested (and uninterested) over and over again....it really comes down to all you awesome modders out there that keep this fresh and interesting over the years.  I also check the forums everyday to see what is 'new'...that usually dictates my plans for later in the eve.

It's rare that I will play a game over a year (or years).  Just a few games have that distinction...Borderlands I & II, some of the Civilization games, Oblivion (modded the crap out of that one) and Heroes of Might and Magic II (or was it III?).   There are a few more but those should suffice for now....Jeb needs to land on Moho and he is complaining the capsule is running a bit hot lol.

Edited by Red Stapler
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I just go play something else for a while.  I went from KSP to Farming Simulator to Breath of the Wild to KSP.

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14 hours ago, Numerlor said:

I can't really play it without forum challenges because my imagination is at freezing point and even when i come with something i give up waaay early

I'm the same these days - I can't seem to motivate my creativity to the point that I create a mission from scratch, so I tend to base my KSP projects around existing challenges, such as my second mission to Moho (in progress) which takes in a couple of different challenges including Elkano and the Moho challenge.

I also spend far longer maintaining the Shuttle Challenge, and generally trying to be helpful on the forums than I do actually playing these days, which limits my creativity further.  these gaps in regularly playing mean I could probably not pull off a Jool 5, or a Duna mission architecture like I used to, so when I play, I get really frustrated that I can't build and fly like I used to when I was devoting every spare minute I had to the game.  Quite often I just get caught in endless design iteration loops without ever getting to the mission proper.

the above aside, there's still so much I haven't done in even Stock KSP, so I'm not burned out in the traditional sense.  Quite often I'll load FSX and immediately think "Why" which is a different kind of burn out, so the only thing I experience that is similar to KSP is with DayZ SA, where I've been running across the map for hours, get hacked off, then find myself still looting an hour later thinking exactly the same thing.  For me it's the sign of a game with a strong pull on your subconscious.

SM

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during my current burnout which is on going, I have been sucked back to the Souls series and doubt  I will return to KSP for some time. When Dark souls 1 sucked me in years ago, i played it exclusively for almost 3 years. 

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8 hours ago, Leafbaron said:

For me, KSP is an intense mental challenge to play, Designing, mission planning, thinking of redundancies and redundancies for the redundancies. then flying and creating maneuver nodes to complete my designed mission. Most times  i'm up for the mental strain but i get in a funk where i want to play and i keep thinking about the game but i just can't devote the gray matter to it. For instance, right now, i haven't played KSP for 3 or 4 weeks but i've visited the forum everyday. I want to play but i'd just rather do something less mentally exhausting and therefore can't bring myself to firing it up. 

I'm in a similar boat. Probably because it's that time of year again: two difficult AP tests in a few weeks, and the ACT tomorrow, so a lot of mental strain going on. I'm gonna try to spend the evening doing cognitively lax things like listening to high quality rips.

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I've got the opposite problem. I have an ever-increasing backlog of games to play but I don't want to abandon KSP until my space program has accomplished all its goals (flags on every solid planet and moon, science satellites in polar orbits around every body, permanent bases on the Mun, Minmus, Ike, Duna, Gilly, Pol and Laythe, and all Kerbals either safely returned home, or at least in a position where they have a craft and fuel that could take them home if the need were to arise.)

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Posted (edited)

I know part of my general burnout is because I insist on playing career.  It's helped that I've modded my game to heck and back (49 mods total) but ultimately... Starting over with each new patch gets kinda old after a while. Thanks to the amount of time I can dedicate to playing, since I started KSP in the single digit builds, I've made it to Mun/Minmus dozens if not hundreds of flights... But I've been to Duna orbit once and Eve twice. 

 And... Well, playing the early/mid game so frequently really highlights areas this game trips up on.   Science and the tech tree need about as much love as the game needs Roverdude's rocket revamp completed.  Gaps in available parts make things needlessly difficult, and mods only band-aid over that so much while bringing their own set of problems (like SpaceY's tech progression being jumbled, or the sheer number of error notifications I see scroll past while playing that don't seem to negatively affect anything.)

 Nevermind by the time you can hit the two moons, you max the tech tree.  Not really having a late game of things to strive for aside from "I got to X" hampers enthusiasm after a while. 

 

 Meh, not trying to sad panda or crap on things... I'm just dealing with partial burnout.  Clearly I need to add more air intakes :P

Edited by storm6436

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I've had breaks from KSP, but it's usually not so much burnout but I just want to do something different. That said, I *have* lately been feeling a bit tired of the VAB. I just wanna fly already!

And sometimes it feels like I've gone backwards in some ways. A lot of my greatest KSP missions are a long time ago now. The editor gizmos have been a double-edged sword, encouraging me to waste time on details that don't affect the ship really. I sometimes but not always play no-reverts, it makes the flying more intense, but it also slows down overall progress.

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Yup!

I get burnt out too. Finding a new mod always help, I recently installed ScanSat so I'm rather loving that atm. Oh, also, have a go at career mode but turn reverts off and no Kerbal respawning :wink: Keeps things a bit more interesting 

I usually go in a cycle of playing KSP, Stellaris, having a sesh on the original Battlefront 2 then back to KSP.

 

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I'd finally hit a point where I needed a break. Missions were starting to get repetitive. Got to a good stopping point in 1.2.2 and decided to give it a rest for a while. I think it's healthy and will let me come back with a fresh viewpoint. 

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On 4/18/2017 at 9:05 AM, Leafbaron said:

For me, KSP is an intense mental challenge to play, Designing, mission planning, thinking of redundancies and redundancies for the redundancies. then flying and creating maneuver nodes to complete my designed mission. Most times  i'm up for the mental strain but i get in a funk where i want to play and i keep thinking about the game but i just can't devote the gray matter to it. For instance, right now, i haven't played KSP for 3 or 4 weeks but i've visited the forum everyday. I want to play but i'd just rather do something less mentally exhausting and therefore can't bring myself to firing it up. 

Interesting... consider KSP one of the more low-stress gaming options.  At the opposite end would be something like and RTS, where you have to be completely engaged and doing 10 things at once.  Sometimes those things give me the jitters.  KSP is more like fiddling around, puttering with stuff, etc.  There certainly were tense moments (my first mun landings attempts come to mind), but not too much anymore.  I'm sure I'd be a lot of on-edge if I didn't reload / revert every time something went terribly wrong, but that's just too much commitment.  

I'd say I'm teetering on burnout, largely because I'm short on new ideas for stuff to do.  I started a new career a few weeks back after my last save got corrupted.  At first it was fun to do the basic, low-tech stuff again, but now I'm in the same rut of grindy lunar training/sciencing/moneymaking that I went through the last few careers.  

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I've got game burnout. All games.

I find myself browsing steam, and adding games to my wishlist, but never buying them.

When I do sometimes fire up KSP, I either exit straight away or play it for several hours. The problem I have is I've pretty much done all that can be done in KSP. I'd like some new things to do, but adding planets from say OPM, just adds new destinations, which isn't much harder than current stuff - just need refueling, etc. I too would like to give my Kerbals something to do once they arrive!

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Many times my ambitions turn into tedium....

Missions to every body... OK, did that a long time ago.... although I often didn't complete the mission: land on the body, return to orbit, confirm I've got the dV to get back.... ok, let me do other things before timewarping... never get around to it - even in new sandbox games made just for that one mission. In my careers, the only kerbonauts to go to another planet and return to kerbin ready for another mission went to Moho (I had one returning from Duna, but they never made it before I started a new career).

Then my ambition became to establish ISRU at most planets (except Moho and Eeloo for some challenge). But for everything except Eve, Laythe, Tylo, and Duna, that's just sending the same ISRU design that I used on Mun to a new place. For those specific places (I didnt even see a point for Eve or Tylo), after designing the craft, I no longer had the ambition to launch all these ISRU craft.

I tried new challenges:  Return from Eve sea level... check... fully reusable mission to moho without ISRU, check. SSTO tylo Lander: check. E class asteroid into a circular non inclined orbit around kerbin: check (used a lot of gravity assists from Mun)... sort of abandoned plans to finish circularization and attach a station to it.

0.625m Juno powered SSTO: Check -> send similar SSTOs for use on laythe: lost interest

Then I moved on to craft design challenges, For a long time I had been making large SSTOs to haul very large payloads to orbit (I[m talking 8m+ diameter payloads over 150 tons). I started designing modular mobile surface bases to be deployed out of mk3 cargo bays, orbital construction of large things rather than just making massive launch vehicles that can take it all in one go, submarines and a way to deliver them to laythe.

I made shuttle designs. I made stock recoverable "flyback booster" designs in honor of SpaceX (although my flyback boosters were winged)

I installed OPM to give me more destinations (Tekto being the most interesting, but its basically just a small low gravity Eve)... designed some missions to them, even sent craft on grand tour trajectories... abandoned the saves before they even reached them. - I did make an SSTO to carry cargo for Tekto and tested it there, but lost interest before making a whole mission where I'd use it to set up a surface base and deliver fuel to orbit, etc. (started to put components of the mission into orbit, but abandoned the save before the transfer window came up)

I added TAC life support, and started constructing self sustaining modular bases on Mun, Minmus, and set my sights on other planets... after the designs were finished,... yep, abandoned those plans too.

I modded my own planets, first a Duna with oceans and O2, then a larger mars based planet. For the last one, I did an "alien space program" mod for it based on this:

yep... abandoned that save too (and the Duna and laythe space program saves I also tried).

Now I'm playing with a 3x solar system rescale mod. It took me a while to adjust my designs for getting payloads to orbit (my airbreathing SSTO payload fraction dropped from 40+% to 10-11%, my SSTO rockets have payload fractions of less than 1%, and the staged rockets are only getting around 10% as well), and I designed a modular space station to construct in LKO as a staging point for colonization of this much bigger and more demanding system... but I know I can do it, each component is well within my launch vehicle's capabilities, and I just launched the core modules... but I'm starting to feel like actually finishing the station will just be tedious rendezvous and docking, then recover the SSTO that launched them.

I just launched the mk3 cargo dropship to bring base modules down to Mun, but I'm thinking it would be tedious to build the Mun surface base just like the LKO station. I also launched my Minmus Mining vessel (in my modded system, in addition to the 3x enlargements of bodies and orbits, I switched the orbital parameters of Minmus and Mun) - its an all in 1 designs with no need for a kerbal and life support: 1 launch, no surface base... much less tedious than the modular Mun base and dropship that I was planning... but in this save, it takes ~1650 m/s to get an intercept, and several hundred more to capture and land. I had to launch a reusable transfer stage... but so far I havent gotten around to doing the rendezvous and docking (although I plotted the rendezvous maneuver).

Basically.... I solve the design and perhaps piloting challenge a few times... and then I don't have the ambition to do it many more times to actually do the thing that I designed my craft to do.

It used to be I had the ambition to complete interplanetary projects:

Spoiler

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Then stuff in kerbin SOI:

07w3ToA.png

 

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^ Part of a mission to laythe, I sent it and its buddies on intercept courses to Jool with gravity captures... they got out of Kerbin SOI, but never to Jool

Now... I often barely get beyond LKO or even KSC before losing interest in taking the design to another planet:

NQaegvp.png

 

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some times i get burnout not for the lack or repeptitive things in ksp .. just by my lack of ability to do somethings that i want to do .. or some ideas that stay in my head or in the paper but i cant transform / make it happen in kerbal for my lack of knowlage ( becouse i play kerbal the 90% of the time in trial and error and not by knowing how the things works )

for example today i spend 2 hours trying to make it a pegasus mission ( airdrop a satcom ) but in the end i cant make it a stable rocket  for that proposse

..but the funny thing is this: one hour latter i was on kerbal making another mission. is like a relationship of love hate.

( sorry for my english xD i know that is pretty bad writed )

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4 hours ago, jackstech said:

for example today i spend 2 hours trying to make it a pegasus mission ( airdrop a satcom ) but in the end i cant make it a stable rocket  for that proposse

There's a stock craft for that, did you have a look at it? can you fly that one?

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I took a year off to wait for the patching to settle down and for the mods to catch up, and have been enjoying myself in sandbox mode. Couldn't bring myself to climb the career ladder yet again.

Just as well, I'd have lost interest long before being able to complete my 8 million fund kryoship. Only 9786 years to go!

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