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Blaarkies

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Everything posted by Blaarkies

  1. Version 1.1.3 Fixes When creating/editing craft, the "advanced placement" section had a limit on the maximum altitude that could be entered/selected. This altitude limit now updates to match the SOI size of the selected "orbit parent" The limit is determined as altitude, not distance from the center of the planet Kerbol defines a limit of approximately twice the radius of Eeloo's orbit If you run into any issues, please post feedback about it.
  2. This is amazing! I knew about the fuel panel showing all parts on the craft with that fuel, but never thought of using it to select them...i have always been doing ALT+Click on every tank
  3. Having a low TWR 2nd stage (0.5-0.8 TWR) can do surprisingly well if you point it 10-20° above prograde (when 50km+ altitude). The steering/cosine losses on a small angle is tiny, and is outweighed by less dry mass (from having less engines). This is really easy to do if your 1st stage yeets it into a fast horizontal trajectory like you do, it gives the 2nd stage a lot of time to build up the last bit of speed to orbit.
  4. The HG-5 works perfectly well out to Minmus even at Hard difficulty with a Tracking Station level 1. It really made the Caveman Challenge so much easier by just sticking to the HG-5. It has a strong direct connection at that distance (in orbit around Minmus), and can relay to other HG-5s beyond Minmus' sphere of influence. It is by no means a permanent "long term" solution to having a CommNet in Kerbin's SOI, since it can't relay much farther than either of the moons' SOIs (say from Minmus to Mun, if the other spacecraft is in Kerbin's commnet shadow).
  5. You will need to go to your game directory (if you got it on Steam, check the steam folder. If you got it from other platforms, check their folders, or where you installed it at a custom location). From there, try to go to "..\Kerbal Space Program\saves\MyCareerGame\Ships\VAB\". There you will find all craft saved in the VAB specifically. Editing is simple, just open the .craft files with Notepad or any text editor of your liking (Notepad++ has a plugin that highlights sections in different colors to make more sense of it). Editing craft files is not a good idea, it takes lots of time and prone to errors until you get good at it. There isn't many tools available to edit every aspect of them, generally users rather edit the persistant.sfs file, since that contains the actual craft that have been launched (great for fixing the docking port bugs)
  6. Someone made a visual tool for figuring out CommNet satellite constellations, maybe this helps https://ksp-visual-calculator.blaarkies.com/
  7. To get around the "controlling 2 craft" problem, i have been doing such launches from the desert runway launch site. - Start there with a falcon 9 type of rocket, launch east (maybe slightly to the north, heading 85 degrees about) - Thrust until the trajectory is a little past the KSC, with an AP around 100km - By the time you exit the atmosphere, you can decouple the payload an get that into orbit for about +400m/s dv. - At this point you have lots of time before having to worry about the booster (but an Ion engine will obviously make this difficult) - The booster can make a few course corrections before/after the payload is already in orbit - The booster will get hot during reentry, but it's not going at orbital speeds yet - Im using 120% reentry heating, so on normal it shouldn't be a worry - As long as the booster lands on the KSC continent, you get like 90% or more recovery funds
  8. Completely normal in career mode. upgrade your tracking station building to see it and remember to upvote the answers on forum post
  9. Try lower the throttle setting on the Kerbal's RCS. Right-click on the Kerbal, and it should should a green bar that limits the throttle. With that at 25%, it will become much easier to handle EVAs since they no longer overshoot in either direction. Remember to turn it back on for Mun landings, will need full strength there
  10. Version 1.1.2 Fixes Exporting a savegame with some craft removed, would break imports with that json file Input number sliders would set different values depending if a number was typed in, or selected with the slider Input number sliders now follow an exponential curve, making it easy to select specific numbers (e.g. 6 antennae on a craft) at the cost of having less granularity at large numbers (e.g. 96 antennae on a craft) Tests Added some 380+ unit tests to ensure stable feature functionality during future releases If you run into any issues, please post feedback about it.
  11. Sounds like it would give an entire new meaning to The Caveman Challenge
  12. This works, but is a little bit tricky because of the site's latitude (launching east gets you into an inclined orbit). The booster needs some 2000 m/s dv (or even more) to get its trajectory out over the KSC (when launching from the desert launch site). Luckily the inclination issue is so that, launching directly eastward will let the trajectory come down over KSC. This might leave the booster with an Ap of 100km, which is fine since it gives the payload lots of time to circularize. The booster can then quite easily re-enter (even at 120% reentry heating), and land close to the KSC. Since fuel is the only cost at that point, the booster can be much bigger that what is "optimal", since it gets recovered for +95% cost. Will take some pics next time, it was just a simple 1.25m booster stack putting Kerbal rescue craft in orbit, which is the hard part because of this inclination
  13. Can also empty the fuel contents of the booster in the VAB by right-click menus (but then again using the extra thrust if possible is certainly useful)
  14. The Rep rewards have diminishing returns near +1000 rep, so they might have a "boost" at negative values where we cavepeople start
  15. Thats sounds really dangerous, but if it works it works I'm continuing on the savegame where I completed my NCD run, and it's quite funny how ludicrous the building upgrade prices are...it's barely even an option at these difficulty settings, nevermind the Caveman rules prohibiting it Think i'll focus on the contracts building first to get better profit margins, then the expensive R&D building upgrade, and personally visit the MH launch sites before enabling them in the difficulty settings
  16. Yeah for the short KSC hops i stuck to recovering everything, since there is so little money at the start. But when a Kerbal is onboard an orbital trip, that all became 2nd priority...I can't risk a capsule burning up or darting headfirst before the parachutes can save it, no recovery money will make up for that. Once the satellite contracts started, it was smooth sailing. I launched for about 8000, and those contracts provide +-12000(sometimes they require science equipment which cuts into profits). Doing double contract missions per launch is how I saved some backup funds, to then use for a few science-first missions. But that first part before the satellite contracts is definitely the hardest
  17. Did you find a "Test Terrier at launchpad" contract? With those in hand, you can borrow the Terrier engine to easily do the first Mun+Minmus orbits and Solar science. And if funding becomes a problem and you need to make more funds via contracts, you can complete the contract on the launchpad to get the contract slot back.
  18. Does anyone know what the ETA is for that 1.12.2 update? I really want to continue the NCD savegame, but I'm afraid of the struts-over-docking-ports issue, can't really build big with that going on. Maybe this is a chance to go finish up all the easier levels
  19. Not all of the deployable science equipment gathers science on Kerbin (the Mystery goo machine did nothing for me). I don't know about the others, I think the grand slam worked though. But your setup seems fine (barring the lack of electricity, just add more solar panels), putting this same setup as is on Mun should start uploading science every few Kerbin days
  20. NCD run complete! Busy with a write up here: The Mun rover was such a chore, I had a few close calls where i wish i had more reaction wheels. Luckily I only needed to farm 8.3 biomes on Mun (it has plenty more). I'm going to add some more interesting bits to the write up, any tips and stuff i can think of to help new Caveman challenge members.
  21. This contains my entry for the Caveman Challenge 1.12 (it's about completing the tech tree without upgrading buildings) Below I will explain my missions and strategy to accomplish the "Nano-crystalline Diamond" (or NCD) level of the Caveman Challenge, it is the absolute hardest setting in stock KSP. It is just career mode with the following limitations No upgrading any buildings Custom difficulty, every slider on the lowest/harshest setting 10% rewards for science , funds , reputation Max 120% re-entry heating 0 starting funds ...you get the idea, it is ridiculously difficult the first time you see it (Details can be found on the Caveman challenge topic) You win when all Tier 1-5 tech tree nodes have been unlocked Strategy Green Monoliths are easter eggs that spawn in random locations (1 for each planet/moon). Discovering them on location will unlock a random available tech tree node The most recent challenge rules allow the usage of these "available" tech nodes in-game are defined by having their parent node(s) already unlocked, but Green Monoliths don't care about building level limitation (they can potentially unlock Tier 6+ tech nodes without you upgrading the R&D building) The Tier 5 nodes cost 90 each, and there are 3 Grenoliths in the Kerbin system nearby. Holding out until we unlocked all Tier 4 techs, means that we can save ourselves getting 270 Holding onto contracts for the parts they provide for testing, gives us some usage of those parts, at the expense of holding 1 contract slot closed Use small steps instead of leaps to reduce risk. Funds, kerbal lives, contract slots are all things that can end NCD runs if they run out Lessons learned Green Monoliths are not shortcuts to skipping science. In Caveman mode, it takes as much time to detect anomalies (and visit all of them), than it takes to just go and collect science on Mun The Minmus Grenolith was the easiest: There is only 1 other anomaly on Minmus, so spotting the Grenolith is simple Mun/Kerbin have lots of easter eggs, which look identical on the Kerbnet detection system. If you are not familiar with the easter eggs on Kerbin and Mun, be prepared to visit 5-15 locations on each before getting that Grenolith The random tech might not be Tier 5 (helping achieve the Caveman challenge). It could be a Tier 6, which sounds great, unless it is something like "Command Modules", "Adv. Fuel Systems", "Heavier Rocketry"(what are you supposed to to with a Mainsail? ) "Rover" ships work great on Minmus! 4 Wheels are enough to farm 100% Minmus science in a short time frame (possibly faster than preparing launcher for hop landers) Mun, not so great. It needs more wheels, reaction wheels, solar panels and batteries to keep up with the higher gravity Robotics on an "Engineer Van" can hoist a ladder some +10 m up into the air Build rockets in the VAB that are over part count, then remove the small bits (science equipment, batteries, antennae, ...) and click launch From the Runway (or before the main rocket was built), launch an Engineer Van containing all the missing parts, and Bill (engineer), and maybe Valentina to help assist with the heavier parts Ride out to the launchpad, hoist them up and add the missing parts Launchpad construction vehicles can be built with a rectangular wing as the base, it save on part count, allowing for more wheels HG-5 antenna (a little retractably relay dish) is vastly superior to the Communitron-16. The HG-5 is heavier, but has enough range out at Minmus, and even connects to other relays better because of the improved strength (try it out here: ksp-visual-calculator.blaarkies.com) Before you start your own challenge run The Caveman Challenge (on normal) is fun, it pushes you to accomplish what seems impossible to 90% of KSP players The NCD level is different; it is a commitment, expect to play it for 40+ hours, doing 100+ launches You need to be sure that you know how to launch on a shoestring budget Be sure to understand the career system 100% How does science work, where to find extra science that is not immediately obvious (KSC micro-biomes) Which contracts are best for funds, how to get around bad contracts Be comfortable with the CommNet system; losing signal of an unmanned probe launching eastward, or behind Mun, or out at Minmus, are real issues you need to consider with every launch Correction burns halfway en route to Minmus can become difficult because of this There is a tool for this : ksp-visual-calculator.blaarkies.com How much DV is required to move around the Kerbin system (and possibly Duna/Eve) You will be building rockets that cannot be refueled, and they won't be "cheap" relative to the amount of funds that you have; they need enough DV to complete at least part of their mission You won't have fancy colorful patched-conics orbital trajectories. Returning from Mun low-orbit, means escaping Mun at a certain angle, at a certain velocity; do you know what those are before the burn starts? Piloting skills; you will be landing planes on Kerbin, probes on Mun, and possibly Bob (scientist) on Minmus while he is hanging onto a ladder. Any landing needs to be easy to you because you won't have proper SAS for most of these landings Breaking things on landing could bust the whole mission and bankrupt your space program NCD is arguably 10x harder than Normal difficulty, since you only get 1/10 of the rewards, but profits aren't that simple. The difference between contract reward and launch cost determines how difficult it is, making it potentially even harder If any of the previous points had you thinking too long, it is best to try the easier levels first and see how you like it Topaz[Hard] goes by much quicker than this, and introduces a fair bit of the challenges faced here There are levels between Hard and NCD if you feel confident in your skills After completing any level of Caveman Challenge, you realize how overbudget we have been building craft for simple missions all along Screenshots The Start See the Diamond run for tips on how to get going with 0 funds Starting important tip: Don't throw darts above 30km ! They tend to dive down, nose first at the speed of sound. You can't control them, and parachutes don't work at those speeds There are many solutions, I chose to pick a "test the decoupler" contract and use the part for my own needs for a while We need to build a backup supply of funds, we need it to unscrew ourselves if a launch fails. Grab 2 contracts that have a high chance of succeeding (things like "test parachute at 5km", or "test thing on launchpad"). Then do a tiny launch where you hop the vehicle onto some KSC buildings. The primary objective is making funds, so complete the contracts and recover the entire craft. The secondary objective is getting science to unlock new tools. The first 10 launches from KSC will probably all yield some science. Once we unlock more science equipment, we need to do this again. Remember to unlock tools first (the parts we need to make funds), everything leading up to placing satellites in orbit will help, science equipment comes second here. Do small hops, nothing dangerous. After about 15+ of these we will have most KSC science grabbed for this level and some backup funds as insurance. Go for orbit when ready, but that won't mean you are done with the KSC yet...there is still lots to be done down there "Science Rollers" can easily be "driven" by using the trim controls (actually designed for aircraft). Turn off SAS. Hold down `left Alt` and press `q`. You should see the Roll control indicator move (bottom left of screen). But unlike when we control it with the keyboard (making the indicators max out on each key press), this trim will gently feather it to roll very slowly You can release Alt now. This works for all controls (roll, yaw, pitch) and even translation controls (i, j, k, l, keys for RCS stuff, but i bound my rover wheel controls to them as well). Later you can make rover wheel "lead-footed" so that they keep driving forward without you there If things get out of hand, just turn on SAS (it nullifies these trim values). You can also reset trim with `left Alt + X` Always check to spot this one. A Terrier test contract is gold at this point, we can keep the contract (uncompleted) for 401 Kerbin days if we want, without any penalty. We don't have a Terrier part yet, but they will be extremely useful on the orbital craft we just built moments ago. Keep this golden contract until we are ready to unlock our own Terrier part (meaning we also have to be careful about locking up a contract slot with this), but we can always complete it at-launchpad if we ever get into trouble at least. With a Terrier onboard, it becomes much easier reaching Mun and Minmus, where we find a lot of extra science in orbit. This part gets a bit repetitive, because we might not have all the science equipment unlocked yet, meaning we have to go back later again. But since it is all orbital stuff, we will definitely be going through this region again anyway where we can scoop up left over science. Once we are ready in terms of technology (farm all the easy science near KSC to help unlock unmanned rocket parts) we can start using probes for everything. They are cheaper, it hurts less when they are lost, and we can leave them in orbit to provide a benefit. Forget about the Communitron 16 for these, the HG-5 High Gain antenna is so much more powerful, and it provides relay. The idea with these will be to: build a relay communications network for future launches scan Kerbin/Mun/Minmus for anomolies and mark them as navigation points provide in orbit probes that can transmit science for contracts if we ever hit a dead end for funds At first, some probes won't have solar panels. That is fine, they will relay comm signals as long as they had power the last time you checked them (if you ignore them for 100 years, they will still be functional relay sats, but if you go and control the craft personally, it will shut off). These craft will mostly help launches of newer and better craft. Every launch should be accompanied by enough contracts to cover the launch cost. If we can't pull this off, we need to do silly launch pad contracts to make up the funds that we will need. The satellite contracts can payout 7 000 - 13 000 which cover the launch cost unless the craft has many science experiments onboard. A 2nd contract is pure profit at this point, allowing us to leave a relay/kerbnet probe in orbit somewhere. We will need little bits of science from everywhere possible. This one is dangerous, and the payoff isn't even great, but i wanted some EVA flying science. I strapped Jeb into this...thing, let it launch and then parachute Jeb down to find some more science, somewhere. The S2 roverwheel part is also pretty important, for clearing up the rest of the KSC science. We can get this via a contract for free, but later on it will also be useful for roving Minmus. It is worth researching, but other things are more critical. Remember the hidden science. Some of these sound ridiculous, but they exist. "Landed at Kerbin's water"...gives a new meaning to ships finding land. There are many versions of these going on in game, like "Splashed down at Kerbin's Deserts" is obviously a craft floating in an oasis, but in the end they all give unique science that might not have been collected before. Before landing anywhere other than Kerbin, remember to go get the contract for those. It is usually worth a lot of funds, and sometimes 1. This part is all about the delicate balance of funds, science, and monoliths. Every satellite needs funding to launch, so we will have to find some contract mission that fits together nicely (2 satellite contracts around Minmus is a great start). Then we can determine what kind of science we gain while being there (maybe a landing is possible, or maybe it is better to leave a relay in orbit) Don't be surprised after doing 10+ of these missions just for Minmus, we need to be thorough. Before solar panels, keep an eye on the EC supply (leave the craft before that empties out). Once the we solar panels, we can do a full KerbNet scan of where we are orbiting and mark those anomolies. Anomalies on Minmus are easy: It has 1 black monolith (gives us a tiny bit of funds for discovering it), and 1 green monolith (unlocks a new tech for free) It is worthwhile detecting all anomalies now, even if we don't visit/discover them (that might unlock some lowly T2/T3/T4 techs). Once we unlock the last T4 tech with science points, we can discover these anomalies for a guaranteed T5+ tech. After the very long science collection missions, once we have all the critical parts unlocked, we can unlock the lowest tier nodes in order to hunt monoliths on Kerbin. Don't try that without planes, Kerbin has far too many anomalies to do a rocket launch for each. We will find many false positives. These ground stations show up as anomalies, and they are actually easy to spot as long as you keep an eye on the mountain peaks. Sometimes you get lucky finding an easter egg outside of the savegame A well designed plane can easily get past the poles, even to Badlands. Finally made it to Woomerang. This won't unlock the launch site (since difficulty settings disable it), but the same discovery of Cove or Island Airfield will allow you to launch from them. After a lot of struggling on Kerbin, i decided to go get the Minmus monolith instead. They don't need Kerbals close by, only a controlled craft in physics range (some 2.3 km). Maybe this works with debris as well if the camera is tracking them. At some point, we need larger launch vehicles. With docking ports unlocked, we can add boosters afterwards, on top of the full 18t limit. To build these forklifts, it help using a wing segment as the base structure. ...more to come, look at the Screenshots in the meanwhile
  22. I have been wondering about using a launch pad to the west, maybe the desert runway? (you'll need the DLC for this, but one of the Easter egg launch sites could work in a similar fashion) Launching east from there, could place the first stage's trajectory right over the KSC before reaching orbit, giving enough time to switch to the payload and insert that into orbit, then switch back to the first stage and let that "re-enter" and fly in the atmosphere however you want. You'll need to stretch what can be considered a "booster" at this point, it will be close to itself being in orbit before releasing the payload.
  23. Bob on Jeb's Mun rover! ...knocking a golf ball off a solar panel, what could go wrong? It wasn't all that hard since Bob was still in an elliptical orbit between Kerbin and Mun, the biggest problem is limiting thrust to at maximum 1g for fear of Bob losing his grip during landing. I should have added some foot-pad with engineer construction when i had the chance The wheels hold up ok, but they seem under more stress than i'd like (also more grip would have been nice). In hindsight i would try 8 wheels instead (symmetry would be a nightmare with in-flight construction). The main craft fuel tank is still full, so driving will become easier after 1-2 hops. The mission has a half-size fuel tank waiting in orbit to be used to get back to Kerbin, so i can hop around with most of this fuel
  24. Thats a bummer. I made most of my funds from tiny contracts, the kind where you test at launch pad, and/or parachutes at <5km. I used these while farming KSC science so that everything is recoverable. It probably takes longer than the roller design, but it makes money on every launch. Once I get a Terrier contract, i keep that and start tackling satellite contract (but you still have to build extremely cheap on those, because you only have 1 usable contract slot then), so i only started this when i had some capital to fall back on.
  25. I didn't realize this part, thanks! I'm in the works on doing the same thing on Mun, it just takes more fuel tanks (and launches) to get the rover on the Mun's surface. I hope the wheels hold under the stronger gravity. I still need like +-280 to complete my NCD run.
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