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Veteran players reminisce: What was your first Munar landing like?

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My first twelve "landings" ended with fatal explosions, although usually a landing leg or something survived. This was back in the demo, and I hadn't even heard of quicksaving, so each failure meant a new mission had to be launched from Kerbin aboard the hilariously inefficient "Jool V" rocket. My usual technique was to get my apoapsis to 11,400km and then orbit Kerbin until I stumbled into an intercept, then I'd adjust to get my periapsis below the Mun's surface. That's right, I didn't even enter orbit first.

I don't remember which Kerbal it was that finally made it down safely, but it certainly wasn't Jeb.

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Mine was like this:

We coming in for a landing.

*thud*

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Errr........ Sir?

What is it?

2 of the landing legs fell off, we are tipping over!

*much louder thud*

Well, now we wait for a rescue mission.

Those were the good ole days.....

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My first Munar landing was in the .18 demo. After following a NASA style program to learn all the techniques involved in spaceflight, I put together a "kerpollo" program using scratchpad and a slide-rule.

My lander was a descent/ascent stage assembly similar to the LM, but ran on RCS instead of rockets.

Lander1_zpsf1b814ca.jpg

I was a hopeless addict at this moment.

Best,

-Slashy

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I remember little of my early days in KSP. I have no idea what my first Mun landing looked like. I'm sure that my first successful landing must have been using the method where I would zero my orbital velocity and then slowly, inefficiently, let the lander fall towards the surface. That is the first method I can recall using. I'm guessing my first landing was in the 0.13 demo, though I have to admit that there is a small chance it was in 0.18.

Strange to think how back then it must have been a huge success for me, when now it's so trivial. Those 2000h have really made a difference.

Those old landing legs bring back some memories... A bit sad they are different now. Those new ones are easier to use, but they just can't grab capsules as well as the old ones could...

Edited by xrayfishx

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My first landing was horrible. I didn't know how to interpret the flight ball retrograde maker and take corrective action during final descent. I landed with too much lateral velocity and you can use your imagination.

Sorta reminded me of this fanwork vid: :D

As soon as I learned how to use all the flight ball vector markers and how to correct them using RCS and burns, my rendezvous', dockings, and landings are a breeze. Learned stuff...

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My first Mun landing was almost perfect and so boring. I was there. Landed on the Mun. Did some science and then... then? what to do on Mun? there was no spare fuel to visit other places, no rover, nothing to do. so much learning, so much time and so much effort for the 10 seconds of eva and crew reports?

i love this game.

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My first Munar landing was an Apollo-style Munar orbit rendezvous mission in like 0.19, using a Mk2 lander can. The orbital rendezvous and docking was not so hard, but actually landing took a fair bit of the paint off of my f5 and f9 keys. I never really drilled a hole, but I ended up on my side over and over and over and over and over and over and over again. Trying to toggle back and forth between the docking and flight modes with the keyboard to do the RCS translation to get the dern thing headed straight down was just impossible. When I finally stayed upright on the gazillionth try, I was dancing all around the room. Then I started using a Nintendo controller and suddenly it was easy! I'm amazed so many people still fly with their keyboards. Now it takes landing on Tylo to get my pulse rate up. On the other hand, I'm playing a hard career game right now and my next mission will involve doing it without the benefit of RCS. That might not be so easy!

Edited by herbal space program

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The memories... My first landing was March of last year (still a veteran, 700 hours played). My lander was a pod, parachute, 2 small fuel tanks, and two small tanks with engines to give more fuel to the main engine. I knew everything about the Kerbin system up to Mun orbit. My lander had extensive testing, ten flights to make sure it decoupled properly, 5 for the launcher, and 2 for the ladder (back then I thought you needed ladders for everything). This was my 5th attempt of a landing. Attempt 1 and 2 ran out of fuel, and 3 and 4 crashed into the Mun. The launch was perfect. I had tight margins in orbit, but the transfer stage got me into orbit around the Mun. I decoupled it, and went for the landing. I killed most of my velocity, and was really close to the surface. I forgot to kill my horizontal velocity, and I was moving around 30 m/s. I hit the Mun hard. Left fuel tank gone, righty survived though. I survived with about 60% of the ship alive. I got out, extremely excited, and planted my flag. I took a picture of it on my phone (it's still on there). I terminated the mission afterwards, but not after 3 rescue attempts. One of the best things I've ever done (after a Tylo landing and return, and my first visit to Duna, which failed to return home but still landed).

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Back around .13 or .14... I was clueless to orbital mechanics and had my friend help me. Fins for landing legs. Those were the times

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Playing the pre-1.0 demo my best plan was to deccelerate as much as I could, EVA, and hope to bounce.

But hey, I beat my friend to the moon at like 1am so it was worth it!

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Back in 2012, can't remember which version. I guess it was pretty typical:

1st attempt: too aggressive on the lithobraking. 100m/s too agressive. Splat.

2nd attempt: way too careful, managed to land but wasted all the fuel meant for return. Technically a successful landing.

3rd attempt: managed to touch down but was a bit rushed and sloppy, rocket fell over.

4th attempt: wider lander with lower CoM, landed with enough fuel for return.

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I landed. Shouted hooray! Rocket tipped over. I learned how to take back off by pointing rocket up the slope and launching over the peak of a nearby hill.

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That was .17 I suppose. RCS was overpowered.

Launch straight up, 90 degrees turn, circularize.

Wait for Mun to be just over horizon, burn. Shut engines when orbit shows encounter.

Approach fast, circularize on Mun Pe.

Deorbit using RCS (I told it was overpowered...)

Slowly come down to surface.

Land using only RCS.

Spring all around the lab (yep, it was in the laser physics and crystallography lab, where I were working at that time.)

Launch and circularize. Yep, RCS only.

Run out of RCS trying to bring Kerbin Pe in atmosphere.

Force Pe in atmo using remains of liquid fuel.

Land with the same lander on 12 shutes...

Ahhh, those times...

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It's so long ago now, I can barely remember.

I do remember there were no landing legs - so I was using fins as landing legs. I also took a number of attempts before I was successful.

I have a vivid memory of my first Minmus encounter though. I was having a nightmare of a time getting an intercept even. When I finally got close enough to see it, I pointed at the moon and burned towards it. Probably one of the stupidest things I could have done (that plus time accelerating closer). I "landed" at about 1000 m/s, screaming as I was going in!

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My second mun landing was more impressive. Dark side of the mun, coming down, realized I forgot the lights. Couldn't see a thing and I set it down on a ~45 degree hill with a perfect landing. To this day I don't know how I did that. Granted the Mun's gravity was more forgiving in those days.

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Oh boy... My first Munar landing was manned right away, I think it was in 0.22. Bill "volunteered" for the job as he was the only pilot left alive at that time.

The launcher was totally over engineered, I just wanted to make sure there was enough dV - I used almost the same one later to make it to Duna. It was my first attempt to enter a Munar orbit where I discovered that it went the wrong way around. So I had to compensate for the additional rotation during landing. So I used some of the fuel of the transfer stage that still had plenty of dV left to deorbit the lander.

Then it turned out that the landing site will be inside one of the big dark craters, just off the rim, because I misjudged the amount of rotation of the Mun. I didn't dare to try to extend the trajectory because the lander was getting low on fuel. But Bill was lucky, the landing site turned out to be a smaller crater inside the rim - just pitch black because of the rim's shadow. D.... why didn't I take lights with me? But then I remembered the ladder thingy had some built in. So I extended the ladder - and there was light! Very little, but just enough to judge the height.

The landing was a bit harsh - 2 of the 4 solar panels disassembled, because I stupidly had left them deployed during descent. But there I was - it felt soooo goooood! Forgot to take a screenshot.

Returning to Kerbin went very well, although there was almost no fuel left in the end.

This game is so rewarding and so much fun! Only drawback: it eats my spare time ... in no time!

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My first twelve "landings" ended with fatal explosions, although usually a landing leg or something survived. This was back in the demo, and I hadn't even heard of quicksaving, so each failure meant a new mission had to be launched from Kerbin aboard the hilariously inefficient "Jool V" rocket. My usual technique was to get my apoapsis to 11,400km and then orbit Kerbin until I stumbled into an intercept, then I'd adjust to get my periapsis below the Mun's surface. That's right, I didn't even enter orbit first.

I don't remember which Kerbal it was that finally made it down safely, but it certainly wasn't Jeb.

sounds a bit like my landings.

the only difference: I figured out that I can timewarp on launchpad (in the demo version). so I assembled a big rocket, and went onto the launchpad. timewarp till mün was right above, and launched. that thing was hillariously inefficient. but I did not only manage to land one kerbal over there on mün (who then became the first permanent resident due to lack of fuel), I even landed a second one within 150m to the first one (with a completely drained tank too), as an attempt to rescue the first one. this way, bob and bill became the first two kerbals permanently staying on another object (jeb rested somewhere in pieces).

I later used a similar method as you described to land on eve and duna (one way of course). 2000 days eve trajectories weren't uncommon.

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It was in the demo. "Land on Mun and return to Kerbin" was my personal goal. If I could do that, then I knew the game was for me. If I couldn't, I wanted to find out before I bought the game. I must have tried 5 times before I found out that there was this thing called quicksave.

I set up a quicksave in orbit, and then - sure of myself now that I knew I could just restore that save and not start all over again back on Kerbin - proceeded to land with no problems (other than being terribly inefficient but hey I was new). I then brought the guys home, again with no problems.

Then I bought the game :)

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My first Munar landing was back in the glorius days of 1.0.0

Jep...i think i have the game since 0.12 but never really made a proper munar landing on my own.

Mostly dicking around with rockets watching explosion or when B9 came building spaceplanes.

I visited the mun very often also built bases like crazy all around the system but thanks to MechJeb never made anything on my own.

But when 1.0 came i said to myself: New Aero, New Game, at least everything just one time on my own.

And i made it. The lander was already really advanced (science mode) with Karbonite Drill. (took forever to gather enough science from kerbin)

I made it on first try but i had plenty fuel, very high TWR and light from Kerbol

Good thing i had enough food with me (5 Years to be exactly) because i hit a Karbonite Conzentration of less than 1%

And had no spare Fuel left.

In the end i think the ascend from Kerbin was harder, than the mun landing...

After two years on mun base alpha Bob returned happily into the arms of his beloved family after that unplanned long journey.

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I remember that I first started KSP on the old demo based on 0.13.3, and I remember attempting to go to the Mun, but I don't remember actually landing there.

KSP wasn't as interesting back then, so after a while I got bored, and a couple years later when I came back I found the then-new (okay, less terribly old) 0.18.3 demo, and on my first day playing I stayed up all night trying over and over to do a Mun mission, and since I eventually stopped I figure I must have made it.

I didn't know about screenshots back then though xP

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The surface was brighter (.20/21?) and the landing much to fast.

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