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Posts posted by Pthigrivi

  1. Im also thinking a tutorial on strutting might be a good idea. I even see really experienced folks like Matt Lowne using them really inefficiently which is why they end up with so many. Its probably because so many players rely on autostrut and so they kind of stop thinking about structure. In fact I see a lot of players who look like they’re trying to mimic autostrut: just putting connections absolutely everywhere, which creates the same performance issues that autostrut has.  With a bit of education I think players could make their vessels even sturdier than Autostrut and with much less overhead. Ive never used Autostrut in KSP1 even for great big modded motherships. You just need to think about where these forces are coming from and counteract them in all 3 directions.



    This isn’t a ‘get gud’ argument though. KSP2 feels spongier than KSP1 did even without autostrut, and I think everyone feels like single diameter stacks should not wobble around the way they do. So maybe treating those as rigid could be an option. If a player goes from 3.75m down to 1.25m that would still flex, but if you could solve that with a shroud. And I do still think radial attachments should still flex, though perhaps not as much as they do now. Nate brought up the robotics parts from KSP1 which famously performed like rubber and made for a really unrealistic and poor experience. 


  2. 2 hours ago, Alexoff said:

    KSP1 has mods for giant parts, such as sea dragon. They don't behave like they should in real life (like jelly, I think), they and their connections are as strong as steel columns.

    My suspicion is giant parts are only likely to pose problems if you go from a 50m part with a 10m attachment to a 1.25m part and then back to 10m. Having such a weak intermediary would form a hinge in the middle of your vessel. Nate mentioned solutions like making sure stacks of similar diameter all kind of ignore joint deflection. So if you connect a 2.5m part to a 2.5m part to a 2.5m part it would all just act as if welded. It would probably help with performance. Its a little cheaty, because in theory a player could attach 100 1.25m tanks and it would all behave as rigid despite its real-world implausibility. On launch it wouldn't spagetti, but it would still be unflyable. The question for me is what happens at colonies? I'd love to see players get creative with structural ideas under different gravity loads and that process gets a little warped if players are just deliberately connecting like-diameters to like-diameters because it acts like a brick and you can make a 100/1 cantilever and nothing moves. 

    I imagine this gets complicated because you're trying to approximate real behavior when real behavior on the granular, real-time basis is crazy complex. Lets take a look at whats probably actually happening with the falcon heavy booster connectors. In my life doing really basic wind-load calcs for buildings this is actually a pretty simple example:


    Granted this is a rendering and Im speculating a bit because the structure is embedded in the aeroshell. These aren't just pin connections (well, some, but not all.) The upper brace prior to separation is acting as a lateral truss keeping the lateral forces (labled X+Y here) under control. These forces are induced whenever the rocket maneuvers because the force is coming from thrust vectoring at the base of the vehicle. This creates add-on aerodynamic forces as you deviate from prograde as we've all experienced. Thought experiment: Imagine you want to balance 3 brooms on your fingers. What will happen if you wrap masking tape around them just at the bottom? As soon as you move even a little the 3 brooms are going to come tumbling apart. But if you tape them both at the top and the bottom you might have a chance. This truss at the top of the rocket is that upper-masking tape. It doesn't have to carry the whole weight of the broom, just keep them together.

    There's another structure you can just see between the boosters and the center that counters forces in-line with thrust (labelled in blue, Z here.) Notice they're also diagonal. For most of flight there's very little differential in this directions because all of these engines are designed to keep everything mostly even, but I bet there's a subtle advantage to burning the side boosters a little hot, tugging the center stage up. There are probably also moments nearing separation when you have differential thrust. Thats what those subtle struts labeled in blue are handling.

    So, for folks designing KSP's physics and deflection calcs... are they gonna do all that? Should players worry about all that? Probably not. It should probably be simplified. But how exactly that gets simplified and still allows for the basically infinite configuration KSP allows is not a trivial problem. 

  3. 2 hours ago, MechBFP said:

    It isn't that nobody cares, it is that we all have no idea what else Intercept is building, so while your ideas work well for KSP1 we have no idea if they would in KSP2 or not. As such while your idea is likely better than anyone else (outside of Intercept perhaps) given the obvious practical application already shown, it is out of our hands at this point.

    To this point Nate also mentioned huge interstellar vessels and colony parts. A solution that only makes sense for simple Kerbin ascent vehicles may not be robust or flexible enough to handle what comes later.

  4. 14 hours ago, gussi111 said:

    Where do you see vertical struts?

    Really no one should be using struts that are parallel to thrust, as even in KSP that doesn’t help with wobble. Struts are there both in KSP and in real life to resist lateral forces. They can be angled (mine usually are to form trusses) but if they’re straight up and down they’re not resisting the right forces. 

    Instances where you might see struts within the center stack would be like the Soyus hotstage ring or maybe securing a heavy payload with a small base attachment. In both cases you’re looking to strut diagonally to form a truss. 



    Side boosters absolutely need to be attached in at least 3 places. For smaller boosters I often put the decoupler near the top and two diagonal struts near the base. The decoupler force is enough to kick them out and away from the center stack. For larger boosters I’ll use the doupler near the base and struts at the top with sepratrons  around 3/4 the way up the booster. This usually creates a nice balanced kick-out so the base of the booster doesn’t over-rotate inward and clip the center engines. Again attaching in three places is what gives you your structural triangle for resisting lateral loads. 

  5. 9 hours ago, PDCWolf said:

    Thankfully, this is not about hmms or umms. We have sources we can check.

    First off, Elon mentions the redesign on the center core to accommodate the loads.

    This was later echoed in the SES-10 conference.


    Another source explains that the center core houses all the separation equipment


    An animation by SpaceX themselves


    Great NSF thread where there are a couple exclusive pictures showing the attachment ring at the bottom of the booster, as well as the connections to the side boosters. Coincidentally shows other rockets, proving that nowhere in real life do KSP struts exist.



    Dude they’re still holding the side boosters in place prior to separation. Do you have any idea the moment that you’d see if it was only attached at the bottom? 

  6. 17 minutes ago, Stoup said:

    I wanna mirror my sentiment posted elsewhere... I didn't pay 50 dollars for the game to be told that I need to "eat my vegetables" in hope of some unspecified future instead of being able to easily enjoy the product that has been released :(

    I don’t think thats what he meant. I think he meant the devs would need to eat their vegetables aka digging into a more robust and sustainable solution. 

    The central problem is that neither spaghetti nor a flying brick are good solutions. I think Nates comment that these parts should behave close to our intuition is exactly right, but even that is a spectrum. Being an architect I absolutely expect things to bend and flex because thats what real materials do. People don’t normally see that because if a bridge or building is visibly flexing something has gone horribly wrong. You also wouldn’t expect a plane’s fuselage to flex, but it does slightly under lateral loads. You can also see wings flexing if you look out the window under turbulence. 

    So Im happy to see the commitment to really solving this problem long term. Obviously what we’re currently seeing isn’t right. And if autostrut puts a finger in the dyke until the real solution is ready thats fine too. 

  7. 8 hours ago, Nuke said:

    i follow a channel that tracks the war from the standpoint of a retired infantryman. i wont post a link because it leans into the politics. part of the reason that starlink was discontinued in ukraine is that it was feared that putin would start using asat weapons against the swarm. so spacex decided to take a more politically neutral stance. im not sure the us government was involved in the decision other than perhaps providing access to official diplomatic channels. 

    True this is dangerously close to the ‘p’ word. Just curious about the administrative consequences. 

  8. You also have to wonder if some of the not-so-well-timed decisions regarding starlink access in Ukraine has made the feds less inclined to offer blank checks of late. Things take less time when pressure comes down from above. If that pressure is absent though... Being a big defense contractor can be a double edged sword.

  9. The title is a joke

    This thread is actually a bit of shadenfreude seeing non-factorio games dealing with factorio problems. As soon as KSP introduces supply lines it incurs a huge number of these same networking problems. The good news is managing these kinds of complex supply lines is actually a really interesting engineering puzzle. The bad news is the devs really need to study successes and failures across genres in this field to give players robust and intuitive UI tools to manage them. 

  10. I have this coworker who has a few roles because we're a small firm and part of it is IT and and he really seems to relish in loudly berating tech support folks who are trying to help him, to little effect.  Everyone else in the office has to have real conversations about actual business while rolling our eyes at the stream of expletives from the other room. Sidebar:  One time I had a Macbook that was 3 years and 2 weeks old, but Apple had (possibly deliberately) failed to notify older owners that laptops have a humidity problem that in the end compromises monitors and the motherboard. It took a couple of weeks of calling, but eventually I was able--with determined, polite conversations with tech support, to have the recall covered under Applecare. Im sure there's a macro-strategy of waging a social media campaign against a particular company which might raise the heat enough to make its way into an actual upper-management meeting. Maybe Im more cynical than some imagine but I don't think they much care. At that level your [complaints] about bugs and communication is weighed against investor demands and you will absolutely lose. There's a famous scene in the life-lesson that is The Wire wherein Bunny Colvin declares: “Middle management means that you got just enough responsibility to listen when people talk, but not so much you can't tell anybody to go [snip] themselves.”

    For those of you using fellow forum members as a prop in a theatrical pressure campaign against a subsidiary of a multi-billion dollar multinational corporation this is who you actually want to direct your attention to. Please don't waste your time bickering with hopeful fans. We have our own campaign: to as best we can accurately and conceptually  convey to the actual makers of this game what real meaning, quality, and value translates to in concrete deliverable terms in the context of KSP. 

  11. 1 hour ago, Kimera Industries said:

    Actually... that's way better. You make some great points. As far as a mod though, I'd love my idea for KSP 1, at least.

    This is also great news. One of the reasons I am scared to do something like a Duna mission in KSP1 on career mode is because if I timewarp to a transfer window, warp to Duna encounter, or warp back to Kerbin, etc. my other contracts will expire. This is my least favorite thing about career mode, and I like the idea of exploration mode much better.

    Agreed, Mods will be epic. And as for full progression the proof is in the pudding. We'll see when Science comes out how things are looking. I do like the way they seem to be thinking about the problem though. I mean you see a game like Factorio that has almost no explicit goals (build a rocket I guess?) and yet the fundamental mechanics and ratios create a huge world of possibilities. I don't think KSP is quite that dogmatic, but Im hoping some of the cool ideas from survival city builders and even starfeild give a bit of license to think about crafting and networking dynamics in a way that tailors well to a light-hearted, hardboiled, space-navigation game.

  12. 13 hours ago, Kimera Industries said:

    Regarding missions...

    I loathe the contract system of KSP 1, and many players do as well. It's directionless, boring, (grindy), etc. 

    I think a bit more leeway is needed when designing your own space program. A higher level of customization, I feel, is what KSP 2 is trying to do, as evidenced by new procedural parts and color customization. 

    One of the things I'd love to see, though, is more personalization about your own space program. You can already pick your own colors, but those still apply to craft.

    For example, maybe when you make a new save, you could pick if your space program is government or private. If you pick the NASA-style one, you don't get contracts (are they called missions, for KSP 2?), and instead get funding. Doing an awesome achievement, (getting into orbit, etc.) gets you higher funding, and something bad (crashed ship, dead kerbals) would mean you lose funding. You might have goals you can choose to accept from your government (Maybe you could pick that, too-dif. governments have dif. advantages, but that sounds complex), like landing on The Mun, but still generally unspecific. If you pick the SpaceX-style one, you do get missions (contracts, whatever) and can offer services, such as "I can place x in x orbit for you, or x satellites in LKO" Having a different style space program could also affect building styles.

    These are fun ideas but it doesn't seem the direction the devs are heading in for career (I think they're calling it exploration mode more recently?). They've more or less ruled out money as an in-game currency and they're taking a very open-ended approach to time-based mechanics. Because one player might want to do 10 missions around the Mun and Minmus (which would take a bout 100 days in game) and another player may want to send a probe out to Jool (which takes about 5 years) you have a really wide range of time-warp needs. So something like funding that rolls in over time is pretty hard to make work for diverse playstyles. Rather than give a small slate of codified modes (Government, private, star-trek luxury communism) they're leaving that kind of personal story telling to each players imagination. By not spelling it out the devs let players imagine whatever they prefer about the nature of their program.

    They're also trying to do something KSP1 never did all that well--create a structure of base game mechanics that become their own, open-ended reward system. For instance rather than tell players to put a satellite in a specific orbit for cash, there will be experiments that require you to scan a location for a long period of time. This might mean putting a satellite in a geosychronous orbit, or maybe putting a network of satellites that maintain constant coverage. It might mean landing in a very specific place on a moon to study an anomaly. Maybe you master hyper-precise landing, or maybe you include a rover so you can land close-enough and then drive to it. It's left to you how to solve the puzzle. I think leaning more heavily on these kinds of mechanics-based goals will be much more rewarding than KSP1's "Scan X location at altitude Y" or "Deliver this station with random bits stuck to it to X orbit." It seems like there will be some spelled out missions but they've described them as more tailored and less procedural. 

  13. 12 hours ago, tater said:

    A small SS stretch makes lunar surface round trips a thing from LEO.

    Im guessing they could set up the refuel depot at a higher orbit too, or even have a refuel location in Lunar orbit. Once you've got big mobile fuel tanks there are a lot of options. 

  14. 5 hours ago, jastrone said:

    i mean you will be able to build ships in space stations so it wouldnt be out of the question to change existing ships. but it probably will be like the vab and not like ksp 1 where the ship is simulated while you edit it. 

    This is what Im thinking, and I'd much prefer it. Trying to get RCS blocks all nice and lined up in the field when you forgot to add them in the VAB is not really a pleasant experience. 

  15. 56 minutes ago, PDCWolf said:

    Don't confuse "the regulars" with those that share your viewpoint. In fact, a lot of the real regulars clearly have chosen to eat somewhere else.

    I did say ‘some’. Im sure many have moved on. Others are Mac and linux people out in the cold. Others lurk but wont have much to say until bugs get fixed and content gets added. Thats pretty understandable. 

  16. 6 hours ago, RocketRockington said:

    Is it as weird as customers who acknowledge the food is terrible, are not even eating said food, but  routinely come back to the restaurant each day to make hour-long speeches in front of the restaurant about how people should still be giving it a chance, that it's totally understandable that there's a good chance the customer will get food poisoning, that they should support the restaurant anyway so that some day, perhaps, just maybe the food is less nauseating and vaguely edible -  and if anyone has issues with food poisoning, its their own fault for not reading the fine print? 

    But did you get food poisoning? Or did you buy a buggy video game? 

    Restaurants have regulars, and so does KSP. They have a new chef, new menu, and some of us are hopeful they can work out the bugs. You can’t be too surprised when after the 500th time loudly complaining at the bar to anyone who happens to wander by the regulars roll their eyes and say “Okay buddy. Thanks. We heard you.”

  17. 4 hours ago, RocketRockington said:

    Thus the argument here is not about politeness - you can still politely tell people they're doing a bad job - but that to be 'polite' here in some people's minds, the ones who want to police the discussion - you have to bend over backward to say 'Oh yes, I'm sure the cook & restaurant staff are all amazing people who in no way shape or form are doing less than their best - only OTHER CIRCUMSTANCES could possibly have caused my food to arrive covered in hair, late, cold, dramatically overpriced, and missing most of what I'd ordered from the high-gloss menu.

    To use your analogy though typically folks who get served a bad meal send it back, talk to the waitress about it, or if its really bad maybe they leave a nasty review. They don’t typically return to the same restaurant day after day for months on end to harangue other costumers about it. That would be seen as a bit weird. 

  18. 26 minutes ago, Vl3d said:

    @Pthigrivi you are going deep into details but you are still not addressing the heart of the matter at a principled level: stock KSP cannot and will never use time-constrained resources as a gameplay mechanic, because the player has to be able to at any point create a stable equilibrium that does not break under any amount of time warp. Thus all systems - electricity, heat, radiation (which I bet will be used as a stand-in for life-support) have to be stable in essence. What you are proposing is in many cases using time as a resource (the need to pack enough snacks before the trip, the need to ensure logistics for new LS consumables etc.) - which is not compatible with stock KSP.

    Im not so sure. We already know some experiments and ISRU will will take time so those resources are already in a sense time-constrained. Since this scheme creates bonuses to those very resources I think it's much in the same spirit as putting a satellite in geosynchronous orbit so it will scan a specific location faster and other examples Nertea gave in his AMA redux; its a way to maximize your time and yields with a little planning. Getting a little extra science and faster harvesting with a healthy, fed crew acts as a reward for solving LS as an engineering puzzle and in the process gives players a better sense of the meaning of time and distance--two core lessons KSP is attempting to teach. 

    Here's Chris' quote on how they're thinking about time-based mechanics: 


    These are the best questions because they’re the hard ones. Often we trend towards supporting a player path that doesn’t reward excessive timewarping, but doesn’t exclude it either. A good case study is resource extraction and deposit concentrations. There’s definitely fun in seeking out and finding the best deposit for mining. Obviously though timewarp makes that kinda moot in timing. You could just start mining a hypothetically low-grade deposit and warp for 50 days. That tells us that time and rate -based mechanics need to have more to work well. A specific example here is that a newly accessible resource should be constrained differently – challenging location, resource transport limitations, etc.

     We try to move the real player decisions to things that are interesting with and without time as a mechanic. Mostly hypothetical examples, but here’s a few ways of thinking of these things on top of my head:

    • Put a locational constraint on something. If you need to do something in orbit over a specific part of a planet, make it take longer than the average orbital cycle. This might encourage a player to put a satellite in GEO orbit over that place. If you do the work to put it in GEO, you get the benefit of being able to timewarp.
    • Use binaries instead of gradients. Does ore concentration really benefit from a really detailed gradient from 0.0001% to 100%, or can you look at it as a yes/no? Trade that, see if you’re damaging player stories with that simplification.
    • Use supporting systems. Sure, you could mine that deposit at high timewarp. But the deposit is on a planet with a day length of 200 days, and you need power, and the area has no fissionables. How are you going to power it? If you solve this problem, it is satisfying and you get a cookie. You did the work, enjoy your timewarpable extraction!

    These are really big problems we look at for all of the more complex systems because hey, an interstellar transfer could be 100 years. Players will timewarp that and that’s… the whole length of a KSP1 campaign. Fun with and without timewarping like this is essential.


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