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I have a feeling...

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9 minutes ago, ZooNamedGames said:

As to KSP 2, again why remake when you can build upon what you already have?

Sequels tend to do rather well in the video game industry, and are usually relatively low risk as there's an established fan base. Plus a new version offers some advantages:

- You can discard early design decisions that didn't work out well, or make big changes that otherwise wouldn't be feasible (like switching game engines).

- You can set a higher target for supported hardware.

- Most importantly, you have a large potential market, whereas the old game eventually saturates its market as the product enters the "long tail" phase.

Sequels are far more common than continuous development in video games for good reason.

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3 minutes ago, Red Iron Crown said:

Sequels tend to do rather well in the video game industry, and are usually relatively low risk as there's an established fan base. Plus a new version offers some advantages:

- You can discard early design decisions that didn't work out well, or make big changes that otherwise wouldn't be feasible (like switching game engines).

- You can set a higher target for supported hardware.

- Most importantly, you have a large potential market, whereas the old game eventually saturates its market as the product enters the "long tail" phase.

Sequels are far more common than continuous development in video games for good reason.

100% agreed.

But further to that, am I the only one that is against "continual development"? ie: a game that will *never* be "finished"? Its all well and good having a slow but constant stream of new features, but just simply knowing that a feature will be added in the future makes me not want to play until said new feature is added. I admit thaht might be a personal foible of mine, but that is my position.

This is all of course ignoring bugs which must be stamped out. If you are against bugs, then you surely must be against continuous development, as in that model it is inevitable that new bugs will periodically be introduced.

I assume the KSP devs have a list of feature that they want included in the game. This list must be of finite length. Do they plan to add more features once this list is completed? How long can that go on for?

I would like to know more about the long-term KSP roadmap, as it may give me some insight into when I can get into KSP long-term, without game-changing updates occuring in the middle of a playthrough - which for me may take 6months to a year, hence I've not had many, in fact all major KSP "phases" of mine have been cut short by an update which shook things up so much as to either necessitate a brand new career or a period of playing something else whilst KSP "stabilises".

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20 minutes ago, Red Iron Crown said:

Sequels tend to do rather well in the video game industry, and are usually relatively low risk as there's an established fan base. Plus a new version offers some advantages:

- You can discard early design decisions that didn't work out well, or make big changes that otherwise wouldn't be feasible (like switching game engines).

- You can set a higher target for supported hardware.

- Most importantly, you have a large potential market, whereas the old game eventually saturates its market as the product enters the "long tail" phase.

Sequels are far more common than continuous development in video games for good reason.

You can do most of these with KSP as is, without needing to create a second game.

Issue is KSP is still lacking, significantly I might add. Why ditch your best product and start again? Especially since there is nothing to SEQUAL. KSP is simply content, for a sequel to be just that, there must be some form of plot development but KSP lacks plot. It would not be a sequel as simply an upgrade which makes KSP 2.0 nothing more than just that, another version of KSP which like every version will be updated and stacked upon until the original fresh idea of 2.0 is forgotten.

Let's focus on getting KSP complete before we think of starting new.

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11 hours ago, Snark said:

Certainly you can criticize whether you think they're succeeding at that job.  My impression is that you think they're not doing so great.

 

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

I actually don't. I think they are doing great, but they are not focusing on the right thing. As if they didn't have any long-term plans and the idea of how the game should look like. The Goliath engine looks great, but the career mode not so much.

Fair 'nuff, then, my bad-- that was how I read your earlier posts.

"Focusing on the right thing" is a really hard problem in game development.  It keeps coming back to the can't-please-everyone problem.  For example, there have been multiple patches that keep giving more and more and more attention to spaceplanes, at the expense of not getting more toys to play with for rockets.  That bugs the heck out of me, personally, because I like rockets, I think KSP should be about rockets, and I begrudge every additional hour of engineer time that they spend on airplanes.  Not that planes are wrong, just that I think rockets should get priority, and they haven't, not for a long time.  But that's just me-- there are a lot of KSP players who adore spaceplanes, and would have been unhappy if Squad had just left them to wither on the vine.

(In other words:  my own position is "career mode looks great, the Goliath engine not so much.")  :wink:

You're clearly not super happy with the areas they've chosen to focus on.  From reading the forums, I can see that you're not alone, there are plenty of other folks who are also not super happy with that.  On the other hand, there are other folks (I'm one of them) who are reasonably satisfied with where the focus has been.  (My above grouch about spaceplanes notwithstanding.)  :wink:  And I've seen that in the forums, too.  Plenty of people on both sides of that issue.

It's also worth noting that "where should they put their focus" is a decision that depends on a lot of factors, not just "what feature set will appeal to players."  There are other parts to the decision that aren't so visible to players (though kudos to Squad for trying to make them visible, e.g. through devnotes).  For example, there may be some feature that Squad would love to add, but it's such a huge change that it has to be deferred for a while until they can find a reasonable place in the development stream to make the switch-- and it ends up needing to take a backseat to smaller, less intrusive fixes for a while.

(Witness how long we had to wait for better aero.  Long, long overdue, yes; the old aero was horrible.  But they had a lot of other stuff to work on, too, and I'm not about to play armchair general and try to second-guess their decisions there.  I don't work at Squad, I'm not privy to all the reasons behind the reasons, so it would be presumptuous of me to think I'm the one with all the answers.)

They also have to be mindful of other constraints.  For example, there are people who think "career mode is a broken design, it needs to be completely reworked."  (I'm not one of those people, I happen to like it pretty well, but certainly there are plenty of folks unhappy with career mode.)  Squad could do that.  But it would be a big investment of engineering effort that would need to delay working on other things, and it would inevitably irritate another huge section of the player base ("hey!  why did you change it?!?!").  And any time you radically re-work an existing game mechanic, you have the potential to totally break players who are in the habit of having really long-running saves that span multiple KSP versions.  (This wouldn't affect me personally, because I generally start a new career with each major KSP release, but that's just my personal play style.)

11 hours ago, Snark said:

What is a useful thing to say would be, for example:  "I would really like feature X to be added to the product.  I hear that you're adding feature Y, which doesn't appeal to me; I think the time would be better spent elsewhere."

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

That's what I'm doing all the time in the S&DD subforum.

Excellent, great then!  Thank you, that's exactly what we need.  :)

 

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

Simply adding new and shiny parts to a broken game won't make it finished. And that's what's been happening for a while now. A finished product is when the basic idea is fully implemented and made playable/usable. The game is nowhere near playable in stock. I guess we could discuss about if playable means "going interplanetary" or "guessing, building and exploding".

Again, opinions vary.  KSP's manifestly not "broken".  A "broken" game doesn't acquire a big, enthusiastic fan base like this, and stay popular for years.  It's fine if you say "I don't care for stock myself, I find KSP unpleasant without a bunch of mods."  But to say that it's a "broken game" or that it's "nowhere near playable in stock" is an overstatement.  Sure it's playable in stock.  I played it happily in stock for months, myself.  Lots of people prefer stock-- I've seen plenty of posts in the forums for people with gameplay questions who have made it clear that they prefer not to use mods.  The person (other than myself) that I'm personally acquainted with who plays KSP the most is the teenage son of a friend of mine; this guy's been playing KSP fanatically for a couple of years now, and has been utterly disdainful of mods the whole time.  He's only just recently started to play with a few-- and even those are "new and shiny parts", i.e. parts packs, not MechJeb or KER.

And of course, if the game's "nowhere near playable in stock", then clearly the decision to release on console is stupid, yes?  And the people at Squad are stupid?  And nobody is going to like the console version of the game, and no one will play it, and there will be universal derision of it and we're not going to see people eagerly waiting for it or posting how much they love it?  Because all of the preceding assertions in this paragraph are manifestly untrue.

Amend the statement to "Some people find the game unplayable in stock", and I'll totally get on board with that statement.  :)  But try to carry it beyond that, and I really have trouble seeing how one could justify such a statement, given how many people play the game just fine in stock.

Regarding whether the game is "playable in stock":

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

Well, it certainly is. If you don't want to go interplanetary or know the exact dV, that is.

No, not at all.  When I say it's "playable in stock", I mean in all its glory, using all the features, going everywhere.  The aforementioned teenage kid went everywhere, did everything, landed on every body, got science, built rockets, built spaceplanes-- gave KSP totally a run for its money.  All in stock.  And this is a kid who's utterly disdainful of calculators and rocket equations; he did it with experience, some trial-and-error, and a practiced eye.

And I know from personal experience and from reading the forums that he's not alone.

Yes, it's anecdotal.  There are plenty of anecdotes from people with the opposite experience, too.  But I still contend that saying that the stock game is "unplayable" is a gross exaggeration.

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

Most KSP players don't even go interplanetary, because of the lack of basic information (there's the thread somewhere about it).

There are plenty of reasons why someone might not go interplanetary. (I suspect this thread is the one you're referring to-- it was fascinating reading for me, really helps to get an insight into different play styles).  "Lack of information" is one, but it's not the only one, and I'm not even convinced that it's the major one.

Some people just like mucking around with planes, and don't bother with space, much.

Some people like just horsing around with rockets, and aren't interested in really learning all the detailed design principles and science about it, so they just kinda slap things together and fly them catch-as-catch can.  Nothing wrong with playing like that.  My impression is that there are a lot of players like that.  And if you play KSP like that, then you can use brute-force and kinda "fake" your way to Kerbin orbit, and maybe even to Mun landings, but it's really hard to do much more with that play style.  Giving those people a dV display won't fix that problem.

Some people are dedicated KSP players who really want to learn how to make all this work, and take the trouble to learn all the science and design details, but have trouble with interplanetary because they're missing a basic tool, such as a dV display.  So there's an argument there to "add a dV display".  But that's just "adding new and shiny parts to a broken game", or "releasing new things without fixing the old game mechanics," which you just mentioned as being not the right thing to do, so I don't see that this furthers the argument, there.

If it's a new feature-- and if it's doable within a reasonable amount of engineering time-- and if a big enough fraction of the playerbase wants it, and would be helped by it-- then presumably Squad will get around to it at some point.   They can't do everything at once.

Personally, my own take on what's the most common reason why players don't go interplanetary is not that there's "lack of information" (thought that's the case for some), but simply that it's actually a hard problem and requires a major leap of understanding, which is inevitably going to leave behind large numbers of people who find that sort of thing either too difficult or too boring.  Going interplanetary is a quantum leap in complexity.  To do it well, you really need to understand what you're doing, unlike just getting to LKO or even a Mun landing.  I think it's always going to be the case that that quantum leap is going to lose a large chunk of the player base.  The only way for it not to do so would be to automate the game so heavily that you take away precisely the challenge that makes it so addictive and delicious to a lot of other players, which IMHO would largely kill the spirit of the game.

Does that mean that they shouldn't provide more information of assistance of some sort?  Not necessarily.  But it's far from a no-brainer as to where to draw the line.  I'm pretty happy with where they've drawn the line, now; other folks are not.  It's a hard problem.

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

I thought that 1.0 meant that the game is "feature complete", but appearantly I'm wrong.

So you'd prefer that they just abandoned KSP after 1.0?  "There, it's done, goodbye"?  I'm tickled pink that they're still working on it, still adding features, still trying to make it better.  How can that possibly not be a good thing?

My own interpretation of "feature complete" / 1.0 is that the major "bones" of the game are in place, that they interpret future work as being adding/enhancing how things work rather than completely overhauling existing stuff in a way that's not backwards-compatible and will badly break players.  A good example of the latter category is the new aero.  Post-1.0 aerodynamics is completely different from pre-1.0 (I'm including reentry heating in that).  Moving to 1.0 requires playing the game in a completely different way, both in terms of designing rockets and in piloting them.  Anyone with a pre-1.0 career would find pretty much all their rockets to have horrible problems-- all their existing designs can't get to orbit.  Drag problems.  Stability problems.  Burning-up-on-reentry problems.  dV all out of whack from radically rebalanced Isp and such.  It was a huge, very "breaking" change, and it would be a lot harder for them to get away with something like that now, because "totally break pretty much every save game" is such a hurdle.

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

I just don't want KSP to become the second Minecraft, where the dev team got reduced/replaced and features that were previously worked on abandoned.

Life goes on.  People leave.  Other people arrive.  Hell, maybe fresh blood will mean new stuff gets done that you like-- this could be a blessing.  Maybe an old feature gets abandoned because it's actually not a great idea after all.  Maybe that makes way for a new feature that people like, which couldn't have happened under the old regime.

I mean... if you're unhappy with the direction the game has been going... and that direction is the result of the opinions and philosophies of people who were working at Squad at the time... and you want the game to change that direction... why would you be unhappy about getting new people in?

Doesn't mean it'll happen... doesn't mean it won't, either.  Change is change, it happens, it's neither good nor bad.  I wouldn't worry too much about personnel changes per se.  It happens.

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

Simply adding MOAR STUFF instead of finishing and fixing what should've been fixed won't make the game anywhere near good.

Sure, I agree with that statement, which is hardly surprising because essentially what you're saying is "doing bad things is bad."  The question is simply "what's the right thing to do to the game."  It's the job of Squad devs to Make It Better, part of which consists of figuring out "what does 'better' look like."  They work on that.  They spend a lot of time thinking about it.  You'll agree with some of their decisions.  You'll disagree with others. 

Folks like us will post opinions in the forums, they'll get plenty of feedback from players, and that will inform their decisions, too.

I'm not too worried.  I think they've got a good dev team, I think they're working in good faith to try to "make it better", and by and large I think they're doing a pretty good job of showing good judgment and will continue to do so, and the game will evolve with plenty of input from the players.

5 hours ago, Veeltch said:

I don't want to regret spending money on KSP.

Seriously?  I mean, really?

A couple of questions:

  • How many hours have you played this game?
  • How much money did you spend on it?

I don't know what your answers will be, but I'm guessing that they're something along the lines of "a whole bunch" and "not very much", respectively.  For example, in my case, the answer to the former is "thousands" and to the latter is "US $27".

I'm hard pressed to come up with any scenario in which I would actually regret spending $27 on a product that has brought me literally thousands of hours of bliss.  Some of the best money I've ever spent, on anything.  They could pull the plug right now and wipe my hard drive of all KSP-related files so that I can never play it again... and I'd be really sad.  But it would totally have been worth the money I spent on it, many many times over.

Are you honestly saying that KSP hasn't already earned its keep for you, already?  Regardless of any gravy that may get ladled out in the future?

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6 minutes ago, Snark said:

"Focusing on the right thing" is a really hard problem in game development.  It keeps coming back to the can't-please-everyone problem.

This.

Seriously, where's the axial tilt?  Why are the planets still stupidly small?  Why can't I explore the benefits of MMH/NTO vs. Liquid Hydrogen/Liquid Oxygen?  Where's the boil-off?  Why are the reaction wheels so powerful and why don't they saturate?  Why do all rocket engines have unlimited restarts and throttling?  Where's the life support?

Yes, "there are mods for that" but ... ferchrissakes that kind of thing should be in the base game!

Anyway, to address the OP, KSP's development will end at some point.  Sorry, it's the truth.  You can only milk so much cash out of a single video game, at some point the studio needs to move on.  For now, though, I have a lot of faith in the current dev team; they've done some wonderful things that really needed to be done.

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3 hours ago, p1t1o said:

100% agreed.

But further to that, am I the only one that is against "continual development"? ie: a game that will *never* be "finished"? Its all well and good having a slow but constant stream of new features, but just simply knowing that a feature will be added in the future makes me not want to play until said new feature is added. I admit thaht might be a personal foible of mine, but that is my position.

This is all of course ignoring bugs which must be stamped out. If you are against bugs, then you surely must be against continuous development, as in that model it is inevitable that new bugs will periodically be introduced.

I assume the KSP devs have a list of feature that they want included in the game. This list must be of finite length. Do they plan to add more features once this list is completed? How long can that go on for?

I would like to know more about the long-term KSP roadmap, as it may give me some insight into when I can get into KSP long-term, without game-changing updates occuring in the middle of a playthrough - which for me may take 6months to a year, hence I've not had many, in fact all major KSP "phases" of mine have been cut short by an update which shook things up so much as to either necessitate a brand new career or a period of playing something else whilst KSP "stabilises".

Well, I remember reading RoverDude mention something to the effect of making the mods he makes because those are things he wants to play with in his games(but making those mods available to everyone so long as it is not too much hassle), and as SQUAD has shown a propensity to hire mod developers like RoverDude, I would not be at all certain that the feature list is bounded by any rational number.  Each new modder that gets hired no doubt has ideas for things that would make the game 'better' and there is a good chance they also get inspired by mods created by other modders as well, so I would not be terribly surprised to have SQUAD continue to add new features until the game no longer makes enough money to justify ongoing development.  

 

One thing to consider: there are no copy-protections on KSP, so if you play through a service that automatically updates your game(Steam), you can copy your game directory and play that version until you have completed whatever objectives you would like to set for yourself.

With other download sources(GOG, Squad website), it is even easier, as you can just not install any updates to the directory where your ongoing game is stored and nothing will change until you want it to(either through mods or installing new versions).

 

Personally I have several KSP directories in my c:\games folder, including 1.05, 1.1, 1.1.3, and a few 0.90 versions as well.

While I often copy my saved games into the newer install, all of those old installs still work just as well as they ever did, and I can go back and play them anytime I want.  

 

4 hours ago, Kerbart said:

In a perfect world Squad could indeed spend the next two years debugging existing code without adding a single feature.

As 1.1.3 was pretty much all bug-fixes and the primary development mentioned in the last couple devnotes is optimization/bug-fixing, it sounds like they are doing quite a lot to reduce the bug count.  I doubt they will spend 2 years on bug fixes at this point, but it does sound like there should be some major stability/reliability improvements in the next version or two.  

Note: KSP is already rock-solid compared to the wildly popular PokemonGo game, so while there is always room for improvement, I would consider KSP to be in pretty good shape right now.

Pokemon Go: force-stop and restart every 10-20 minutes of play, often losing resources that must be reacquired, multiple annoyances during play(failure to register events, laggy and stuttering play unless features like AR are turned off, frequent lags, crashes and occasional shadow-events while fetching updates from server, some parts of the map were completely unpopulated[down-town Austin may have been populated this morning, finally)

KSP: infrequent crashes after multiple hours of play with an auto-save system that can make sure you do not lose too much play-time, occasional annoyances(maneuver nodes can be fiddly for long manuvers(planetary intercepts for example), need to be careful with landing legs/wheels, probably some others I have not encountered) 

Personally, I consider KSP far more 'finished' than the recently released Pokemon Go game, and I have not heard anyone talking about Pokemon Go not being finished... 

 

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Okay!

Would it be better if there was no KSP at all? I've got my 3 years of enjoyment out of it. As long as it isn't sold to EA or Miniclip or anything, I don't really care what happens next. Sequel? Sure! I can still keep my old versions! Continued development with more bugs? Sure! New features to play with, and I can still keep my old versions! Threads about KSP being shut down? Sure! I can ignore them and I can still keep old versions!

I don't want KSP to ever be "dead" or anything. But we can still keep old versions of it. Plus, if it dies, we might be able to get our hands on the source code.

*end minirant*

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46 minutes ago, Terwin said:

Well, I remember reading RoverDude mention something to the effect of making the mods he makes because those are things he wants to play with in his games(but making those mods available to everyone so long as it is not too much hassle), and as SQUAD has shown a propensity to hire mod developers like RoverDude, I would not be at all certain that the feature list is bounded by any rational number.  Each new modder that gets hired no doubt has ideas for things that would make the game 'better' and there is a good chance they also get inspired by mods created by other modders as well, so I would not be terribly surprised to have SQUAD continue to add new features until the game no longer makes enough money to justify ongoing development.

For the feature list to be unbounded, people's patience for debilitating bugs must also be unbounded...and I know mine isn't - its high, but not unbounded.

 

48 minutes ago, Terwin said:

One thing to consider: there are no copy-protections on KSP, so if you play through a service that automatically updates your game(Steam), you can copy your game directory and play that version until you have completed whatever objectives you would like to set for yourself.

With other download sources(GOG, Squad website), it is even easier, as you can just not install any updates to the directory where your ongoing game is stored and nothing will change until you want it to(either through mods or installing new versions).

 

Personally I have several KSP directories in my c:\games folder, including 1.05, 1.1, 1.1.3, and a few 0.90 versions as well.

While I often copy my saved games into the newer install, all of those old installs still work just as well as they ever did, and I can go back and play them anytime I want.

I do know about this, but I cannot bring myself to invest time in an old version whilst there is another with more up-to-date features, I don't think that that is unreasonable - relying on old releases must be treated as a last-resort. And its not like recent previous versions are bug-free.

 

 

I *am* happy with KSP, happy with Squad and happy that progress is still being made. Im not in any particular hurry (although obvs, faster is better than slower), but I do want to be able to see light at the end of the tunnel, I don't just want the bigger bugs smashed, I want them smashed without the possibility of them being replaced in a new update.

Before the coders chime in with "How can you expect no new bugs this is software, any alteration has the potential to introduce bugs!" I have plenty of patience for hotfixes and whatever minor bugs might not be caught by QA, its the things like *wheels* being borked for half a year that I fear. A new feature every 16 months is not worth a new borked thing.

/rant

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1 minute ago, p1t1o said:

its the things like *wheels* being borked for half a year that I fear.

Welcome to third-party software.

And, FWIW, KSP wouldn't be anywhere near where it is now without said third-party software.

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4 minutes ago, regex said:

Welcome to third-party software.

And, FWIW, KSP wouldn't be anywhere near where it is now without said third-party software.

I know this too, but knowing doesn't change much. Just because the bugs aren't introduced by the in-house devs, it doesn't make them any more bearable. Who knows what new feature in the future will require a unity upgrade.

*edit*

My concern is not with the current bugs, we have been assured time and again that they are being examined, and this is fine by me. My concern is with the long-term roadmap.

Edited by p1t1o

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2 minutes ago, p1t1o said:

My concern is not with the current bugs, we have been assured time and again that they are being examined, and this is fine by me. My concern is with the long-term roadmap.

We'll never get a roadmap out of the KSP devs like Factorio or Dwarf Fortress have.  Believe you me, I've tried so damn hard over the years here to get one, it'll never happen unless they have a fundamental shift in strategy.

Also, we're five years into development.  Depending on future sales the game will slowly wind down to nothing and Squad will either cease to exist as a game developer or move to a new game, it's inevitable.  The best I am hoping for is massive performance improvements and modding support so that the game can continue to stay fresh and support things like RO.

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Just now, regex said:

We'll never get a roadmap out of the KSP devs like Factorio or Dwarf Fortress have.  Believe you me, I've tried so damn hard over the years here to get one, it'll never happen unless they have a fundamental shift in strategy.

Also, we're five years into development.  Depending on future sales the game will slowly wind down to nothing and Squad will either cease to exist as a game developer or move to a new game, it's inevitable.  The best I am hoping for is massive performance improvements and modding support so that the game can continue to stay fresh and support things like RO.

If a roadmap is not a possibility, I'd settle for simply knowing that KSP is being pushed toward some kind of pinnacle and not towards a sort of "Zeno's paradox" kind of perpetual development.

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2 minutes ago, p1t1o said:

If a roadmap is not a possibility, I'd settle for simply knowing that KSP is being pushed toward some kind of pinnacle and not towards a sort of "Zeno's paradox" kind of perpetual development.

At this point the "pinnacle" you describe, IMO, will arrive quite soon, with 1.2 and/or Unity fixing their wheel codebase, plus getting rid of the most persistent bugs, some art updates, that kind of thing.  Certainly we'll see some additional improvements in career mode but a total redesign (that many seem to want) is likely not in the works.  After that ... we'll probably get another update or two but anything further depends entirely on sales and whether Squad determines the game to still be a viable revenue stream.  We may see a sequel, we may not.  We may see a spin-off company of former devs, we may not.  What we won't see is "perpetual development" within Squad unless the game is still selling well.

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All I can say is: Rocket fuel CAN in fact melt I-Beams.

Everything else, @Snark and @regex have already said, and they've said it several times.

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1 hour ago, p1t1o said:

I do know about this, but I cannot bring myself to invest time in an old version whilst there is another with more up-to-date features, I don't think that that is unreasonable - relying on old releases must be treated as a last-resort. And its not like recent previous versions are bug-free.

I tend to be an "upgrade early, upgrade often" guy, but my current install of 1.1.3 with the 70 or so mods I'm using is very playable and I'm having a great time. After a dozen or so restarts in the past 2 months I've decided that I'm not going to just automatically update anything for a while and just enjoy playing the game.

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11 hours ago, Veeltch said:

Simply adding new and shiny parts to a broken game won't make it finished. And that's what's been happening for a while now. A finished product is when the basic idea is fully implemented and made playable/usable. The game is nowhere near playable in stock. I guess we could discuss about if playable means "going interplanetary" or "guessing, building and exploding".

Well, it certainly is. If you don't want to go interplanetary or know the exact dV, that is. Most KSP players don't even go interplanetary, because of the lack of basic information (there's the thread somewhere about it). I guess we all could just yell "Do the math like I do!" at them, but the problem is they won't. It's easier to download KER and KAC. I know. I'm one of them.

And again: simply releasing new things without fixing the old game mechanics doesn't make a game "better" or "finished". I thought that 1.0 meant that the game is "feature complete", but appearantly I'm wrong.

I just don't want KSP to become the second Minecraft, where the dev team got reduced/replaced and features that were previously worked on abandoned. Simply adding MOAR STUFF instead of finishing and fixing what should've been fixed won't make the game anywhere near good. I regret spending money on Minecraft and I don't want to regret spending money on KSP.

Ok, I'm going to throw in my two cents on this, not as a game developer (30+ years in the industry) but simply as a player of the game. I also don't want to jump into the hornets nest of what Squad should prioritise, or how much the game is "doomed" or not. This is simply about by experience playing a game.

I've been sending my little green thrill seekers (and not so green probes) around the Kerbol system for a few days short of two years now and for the first six months of those I had zero mods installed. No KER, Mechjeb, Scatterer, parts packs etc. etc. etc. and at no time did I think "wow... this game is broken", I was simply enjoying what for me has best $25 I have ever spent.

With no plugins I made it to Mun, Minmus, Dres, Duna and Eeloo with return missions. I set up two large space stations in Kerbin orbit, one of them pretty large. It wasn't until I set about an Eve surface return mission that I installed KER. This wasn't achieved through a deep knowledge of orbital mechanics and the ability to make DV calculations of multi-stage vehicles, but by trial and error and rule of thumb.

Is that accurate to real life astronautics, hell no.

Was it an efficient way of getting around the Kerbol system, not a chance, as almost every ship I sent out, I had to rescue with a refueling tanker (even had to send two once) to bring them home.

Would I have made quicker progress to these and other bodies if KER and other add-ons had been a part of the stock game, sure I would.

BUT... it was amazing fun and that ultimately is the point of a game.

Almost every mission was an Apollo 13, where I was forced to come up with a daring rescue plan to bring my little green guys home and at no time did I think that I had to have some add-ons to make the experience worthwhile.

 

Regarding the point about not wanting to end up regretting spending money on KSP, I would simply ask how many hours do you have logged on the game and how much did you pay for it.

I have about 2000 hours, for the princely sum of $25. Compare that with the many $50-70 experiences with triple A games that provide perhaps 25-100 hours, even with replay at higher difficulty levels and KSP has been for me, remarkably good value.

I know that this can all seem as some kind of fanboy drivel, but I have plenty of gripes with the game (don't get me started on reliably positioning maneuver nodes and sliding landers) in it's previous iterations as well as its current form. How annoyed was I that I had to edit save files to bring unresponsive kerbals back to life and free un-undockable vehicles from space stations... really annoyed that how.

But through all of that, the positives have been so massively outweighed by the positives.

 

The usual disclaimer: This was my experience, but experiences may vary.

 

 

Edited by purpleivan

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Word.  I tend to be slow to upgrade KSP, not because I'm dreading the bugs, but because I'm not finished yet.

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Personally, I'd be fine with paying 10 bucks for a MASSIVELY upgrade. (But I do not want ea)

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On 7/12/2016 at 8:34 PM, Veeltch said:

I really hope it's true. I haven't seen the new team in action, though. That's what fuels my concenrs about the future of the game.

Sure you have. Most of us have been here for quite a while, just at the edges of the frame.

19 hours ago, AlamoVampire said:

Also, imagine what it must be like to spend all day looking at lines of code

Oh it's not so bad. :P

Edited by Arsonide

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What if... KSP goes The Sims route? The base game is there, rough and ready to play, but instead of updates, you purchase expansion packs, which is essentially standalone major updates with a bunch of thematic new features.

Want robust life support with all the part that comes with it? There's an expansion pack for that!

A story mode with FMV, 100+ characters, and Kojima-level of dialogue? There's also an expansion pack for that!

Want to design your own KSC building and decide where to assign each one of your kerbal staff? Another expansion pack!

You can just install one or a few, or you can install all of them! 

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19 hours ago, regex said:

Welcome to third-party software.

And, FWIW, KSP wouldn't be anywhere near where it is now without said third-party software.

Consumers shouldn't need to care about how the sausage is made.  Something went from workable to broken in an update.  That's all the consumer should be expected to care about.

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1 hour ago, klgraham1013 said:

Consumers shouldn't need to care about how the sausage is made.  Something went from workable to broken in an update.  That's all the consumer should be expected to care about.

Uh, okay?  Still doesn't change the fact that someone else needs to fix their product before yours can be fixed.  It's not Squad's fault if you're too stubborn to realize where the problem actually is and set your expectations accordingly.

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1 hour ago, klgraham1013 said:

Consumers shouldn't need to care about how the sausage is made.  Something went from workable to broken in an update.  That's all the consumer should be expected to care about.

 

28 minutes ago, regex said:

Uh, okay?  Still doesn't change the fact that someone else needs to fix their product before yours can be fixed.  It's not Squad's fault if you're too stubborn to realize where the problem actually is and set your expectations accordingly.

You're both right. The issue I have is not that the third party software was "broken", it's that SQAUD saw this, saw the issues people had with the prerelease, did what they could, and released the update anyway. I commend SQAUD for trying to fix the wheels as well as they could, but I don't think they should have released something that had a broken component. SQAUD shipped their product chock full of bugs that they couldn't fix, and I don't think that's acceptable in this situation.

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16 hours ago, purpleivan said:

*Snip the WoT :D

This X1,000.

Here's the thing, if you want a feature and it's not in the game, there's probably a mod for it. "It should be stock" or "I only want to play stock" is not a valid answer. Why? Because you are not the only person that plays this game, and just because you think something should be stock doesn't mean that the rest of us do. Unless there's a large majority of people thinking a feature should be stock, then it probably shouldn't be. The beauty of this game, and why it's still got such a loyal following, is because, and I firmly believe this, SQUAD has embraced the modding community to enhance it's product.

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2 hours ago, klgraham1013 said:

Consumers shouldn't need to care about how the sausage is made.  Something went from workable to broken in an update.  That's all the consumer should be expected to care about.

Except that when a tiny company ships a big product, they essentially have no choice but to rely on third-party software, and that means they're at the mercy of any bugs in that software, to a certain extent.

Consumers do have to care about what they buy.  Buying a product from a tiny indie company comes with some neat benefits... and also with some unavoidable risks.  If you don't like that tradeoff, go buy something from EA or Blizzard.

31 minutes ago, Andem said:

The issue I have is not that the third party software was "broken", it's that SQAUD saw this, saw the issues people had with the prerelease, did what they could, and released the update anyway. I commend SQAUD for trying to fix the wheels as well as they could, but I don't think they should have released something that had a broken component. SQAUD shipped their product chock full of bugs that they couldn't fix, and I don't think that's acceptable in this situation.

Except that third-party software will always have bugs, and if you "wait until the 3rd party software is perfect" then you will never ship.

And when you're developing software, you have to make some commitments as you develop:  do-we-do-X-or-do-we-do-Y types of decisions that, once made, pretty much lock you into that path.  And such decisions always come with risk.  They always come with the chance that "oops, there's this big problem with this particular course that we already chose in the past and now can't change our minds."

By the time 1.1 was in experimentals, Squad was committed to the Unity 5 upgrade.  All the code, all the fixes, all the changes were in that branch of the code.  It had already been a whole year since 1.0 came out, with no significant new features in the meantime.  They made a nice effort to toss the players a bone with 1.0.5, with a few nice little improvements, and I commend them for that-- but nothing really big.

So.  Let's say you're Squad, and you're trying to get 1.1 out the door, and it has gradually become apparent that there are some serious problems associated with the Unity 5 move that you had no way of anticipating, specifically, back at the time you committed yourself to that development path.  Here are your options:

  1. Try to put out another major feature-laden Unity 4 update while you wait for Unity 5 to be perfect.
  2. Sit tight and release nothing while you wait for Unity 5 to be perfect.
  3. Do your best, and ship an update on the current Unity.

#1's a total non-starter.  It would mean wasting huge amounts of developer time, going down a code path that's totally incompatible with the Unity 5 branch, writing all kinds of stuff that's going to have to be thrown away when you release on Unity 5.  And will delay the Unity 5 release, since any code you write, you'll have to write twice, because obviously you can't give players a new feature in 1.0.6 and then take it away from them in 1.1, right?  So this would have caused more harm than good.

My impression of your comment is that you think they should have done #2.  If you like, I can amend "wait for Unity 5 to be perfect" to "wait for Unity 5 to fix enough problems that there aren't major bugs that players notice with the KSP update."

That's a really bad idea, too, from a software-development perspective.  First, Squad has no way of knowing just how long it will really take for Unity to get their act together to the point they can use it; "wait until some 3rd party does X" is basically a non-starter.  Add to that the incredible pressure that Squad is under, having gone for a full year with basically no new features (and not a lot in the way of new features for 1.1, either, since it's mainly an engine-migration release).  Add to that the fact that it's really important for Squad to make incremental releases without cramming too much stuff into one single release-- that allows them to evaluate features bit by bit, with observations of player reactions, bug reports from the wild, etc.  Delaying 1.1 would have meant delaying 1.2 more.

And the fact is, 1.1 has good stuff in it.  Delaying it means that players don't get hit with certain bugs... and also that they don't get the benefit of the 1.1 features until much later.  Delaying it would also mean that 1.2 would be less stable, because there wouldn't have been as much time for 1.1 to "bake in" and shake out more problems.

So they went with #3.

Personally, I think that was the right decision.  Shrill hyperbole from "oh noes the game is so broken it's unplayable" folks not withstanding, lots and lots of people play 1.1.x just fine.  I've been having a ball, myself.  Yes, I've run into a bug or two... but I'm also really enjoying the performance enhancements, smoother look-and-feel, etc.  Certainly I've had a lot fewer crashes in 1.1.x than I had in 1.0.x.  From reading the forums, I can see that I'm not alone, either.  And I'm glad that we're working through issues in 1.1 so that 1.2 will get the benefit of that.

Reasonable people can disagree, of course.  If you say "I prefer solution #2 to #3", I'm not going to try to tell you that you're wrong or misguided.  However... it's not a no-brainer, as some folks seem to think.  It really isn't.

If you say "I think that #2 is so much more obviously the right choice than #3, and would have been obvious even before release, and therefore Squad was derelict in its duty and doing its customers an egregious disservice by doing that"-- statements like that, I do take issue with.  It's a hard problem, and folks who don't have experience in commercial software production really can't have any appreciation of just how hard a problem it is.

You can say you think they made the "wrong decision", in the sense that "they took a calculated but unavoidable risk, and got bitten by it more than they or we would like", and I won't argue with you.  That's unfortunate, but it's not blameworthy.  But if you're asserting that "they're dumb at deciding how to develop software", I'd like to hear some rationale about how you understand how to develop commercial software better than Squad does.

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