klesh

The Hot Mess that is Kerbalizer

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So today I thought I might try Kebalizer, the little program that supposedly lets you create a custom Kerbal.  Yes, I am fully aware you can't actually get that custom Kerbal in the game, though there are a bunch of posts from 2013 with Community Support Managers saying its on the to-do list.

 

Let me give you my experience:

 

Your Journey begins here: https://kerbalspaceprogram.com/kerbalizer.php

Ahh, neat, a free version.  I'll give that a shot and buy the premium one if I find it worthwhile.  You are then brought to this page https://kerbalspaceprogram.com/kerbalizer.php?free=true where you are presented with a "Unity Web Player" .exe to download.  Okay, must be a plugin or something for my browser.  I presume the freebie edition is not a standalone program for your computer.  That's understandable, and fine with me.

Download and run the .exe which installs... something... I guess.

Go back to https://kerbalspaceprogram.com/kerbalizer.php?free=true and hit refresh which I would imagine would present me with a Unity Web Player window with Kerbalizer inside that... however, nothing changes.

 

Hmm... well, the top of that page reads "KSP Account - Kerbalizer"... but I don't have a KSP store account.  That's probably the problem!

Proceed to create a KSP Store account and go to the store page found here:  https://kerbalspaceprogram.com/kspstore/

Ahh... Kerbalizer: $0.00, thar she blows!   *clicks link*  which brings you here: https://kerbalspaceprogram.com/kspstore/index.php?p=24

Uhh, Kerbalizer $0.00 is available on Steam or as an Android App on the Google Play store... uh, okay... but what about the "Unity Web Player" I just installed?

*clicks Steam link* and you're brought to the KSP Steam Store page found here:  http://store.steampowered.com/app/220200/Kerbal_Space_Program/ ... but this is just the regular Steam Store page to buy the regular KSP game?   There is no Kerbalizer anywhere to be found!?  Umm, okay?

 

Disregard the following Tomfoolery:

Ya know, I'm not always the brightest bulb, so I'm probably doing something wrong.  Undaunted, it's back to the Kerbalizer store page we go (https://kerbalspaceprogram.com/kspstore/index.php?p=24)!  But this time I've made a store account, so I press the "Login" button... and am faced with this message: 

Spoiler

Whoops!

(Duh)

Li3yACC.png

 

Again, that's after simply hitting the "Login" button.  I was not presented with a username/email field with an additional password entry field.

 

Okay, something isn't working here.  Lemme go deeper and google about this... aaand the results are in! Top result is going to take us to the KSP wiki to find out the skinny on this:  http://wiki.kerbalspaceprogram.com/wiki/Kerbalizer

To which this is the result: 

Quote

"The web player uses Unity Web Player, which won't work with modern browsers."

 

Uh, okay.  So, I guess no Kerbalizer for me then.   What an ridiculous runaround that was. :confused:

 

 

I'm not even sure what a "Suggestion" to fix this hot mess would be.  However, $2 for a little Kerbal Dressup program would be right up Take Two Interactive's alley as a revenue generator to make some additional profit off their purchase of Kerbal Space Program.  Perhaps they could initiate a fix to this bizarre situation?  That's all I got.  :/

 

Edited by klesh

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Lemme just start by saying I enjoyed taking this little adventure with you lol. Someone should definitely look into fixing that or taking the links to it down.

2 hours ago, klesh said:

 

  Hide contents

Li3yACC.png

 

Again, that's after simply hitting the "Login" button.  I was not presented with a username/email field with an additional password entry field.

 

Now this is a totally moot point since as you so elegantly explained it's not supported by modern browsers, but...aren't those blank fields that say "Email/Password" to the left of the Login button, where you would enter your Email/password presumably?

I kind of feel like an A-hole for even pointing that out, but someone was going to eventually...this being the internet and all. Anyways, like I said; I enjoyed the post, my point is moot, they should fix the Kerbalizer. :)

Edited by Rocket In My Pocket

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Haha, touché!   Not a-holeish at all.  I did preface with being not the brightest bulb, but I didn't think it was that low a wattage. Yowsah.

Sometimes I post before sufficient coffee intake.  I presumed it would pop up a box for that info.  Colour me embarrassed.  :blush:

 

 

Edited by klesh

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It takes a big man to admit when he's made a mistake (even a small, moot one) with grace and modesty. Kudos. Subtext: Thanks for not holding it against me. Lol.

Back on to the meat and potatoes of your OP; The Kerbalizer could be a huge money maker for SQUAD/T2, people love that stuff, especially kids. If the custom Kerbals could be loaded into the game itself, heck...I might even buy a copy!

Good writing btw, you really took me on the journey with you, I was clicking the links and everything.

Edited by Rocket In My Pocket

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Personally I bought the full version back in 2014, used it a bit and then promptly forgot about its existence.

Ive tried to use it occasionally but ran into your issues. Considering I spent money on it I'd like to have consistent access.

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9 hours ago, ZooNamedGames said:

Considering I spent money on it I'd like to have consistent access.

 

Wow.  I presumed only the freebie version would have these issues and the paid version would be smooth sailing. Was the paid version also a Unity Web Browser deal as well?

I'm glad I didn't pony up the 2 bucks then. :/

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Given past history of SQUAD abandoning things as soon as they require any effort to maintain, let me say I'm not at all surprised by this.
I'm not surprised the game integration has been abandoned either, there likely wasn't an out-of-the-box Unity addon to do it. We should all know by now that SQUAD can't do anything that isn't a unity feature.

$2 'ain't much, but the brazen advertisement of a product that is known to be broken in modern browsers really rubs me the wrong way.

Soon enough someone will be along to point out that this is a Unity problem and absolve SQUAD of all responsibility for continuing to sell a broken product. At least that's what usually happens.

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1 hour ago, Bottle Rocketeer 500 said:

You could just install the app on your phone, which works, but has outdated scenery that looks like its from version 0.20

Interesting...I wonder if an Android emulator like Bluestacks would work for PC? I've used the free version to play other phone apps on my computer.

http://www.bluestacks.com/#gref

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19 hours ago, klesh said:

Uhh, Kerbalizer $0.00 is available on Steam

Just to confirm your findings, a search on the Steam Store turns up no such product:

plvf080.png

Hey @Badie, Kerbalizer does not work on modern browsers. Maybe it should be quietly retired until it can be updated?

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I remember trying Kerbalizer a LOOONNNGGG time ago, in 2012. I dont know how i got in there though cant remember.

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It's way too much effort for such a simple program. Plants vs. Zombies offers the same thing, but it comes with the game and is easy to use. As it is just a program that allows you to dress up a Kerbal and take screenshots, it's not worth the effort it takes to use it, let alone the money it costs.

 

It probably cost Squad a significant amount of development resources to provide the tool, given it has advanced 3D models. I think perhaps Squad should invest a bit of time and resources to salvage it, mostly by making it easier to access but also by adding more options for what you can do with it. I assume eventually this tech will be wrapped into the main game, which will then be able to render Kerbals who don't all look the same. But that might take a while. Maybe we can have some kind of teaser to keep us interested and help us wait?


What if there was a Kerbal coffee shop which was an online hangout where the Kerbalizer kerbals can be rendered sitting at tables. Then you can log in to a chatroom lounge and chat live with other KSP players, and it could offer some P2P options such as streaming to your new buddy you found in the lounge, so he can watch you play KSP and type messages to you while you play. It's a far cry from the multiplayer that people are asking for, but it could be very easy to implement relative to how much players might gain from it.

Basically, you're giving the players a simple tool and letting them do all the work in using it.

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On 7/23/2017 at 3:32 AM, klesh said:

 

Wow.  I presumed only the freebie version would have these issues and the paid version would be smooth sailing. Was the paid version also a Unity Web Browser deal as well?

I'm glad I didn't pony up the 2 bucks then. :/

It is.

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On 7/22/2017 at 4:10 PM, ZooNamedGames said:

Considering I spent money on it I'd like to have consistent access.

In the age of intellectual property disputes and DRM, It's hard to feel like I'm doing anything but renting products these days.  Most companies will tell you you're buying the "rights" to a product as opposed to the product itself.  It's why I love GOG.com so much.  It's why I don't understand why you'd need a subscription for video capture software (XSplit), or word processors (Office 365).  I'll give you money, you give me software, and let's be done with it.

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10 minutes ago, klgraham1013 said:

I don't understand why you'd need a subscription for video capture software (XSplit), or word processors (Office 365).

You don't, it's just a way to gouge a reliable revenue stream out of users without doing any actual development.
There are perfectly good free software alternatives to the products you mention, and the only reason this 'subscription' shenanigans persists is because most users are too lazy to go get them.
 

21 minutes ago, klgraham1013 said:

I'll give you money, you give me software, and let's be done with it.

Worked well for many years... Then some bright spark realised that most users don't care what happens later, so long as they get what they want right now with minimal effort.
Why deal with the hassle of storing installation files, or installation at all, the cloud is the future. And it smells like money.
Pretty soon our PCs will just be dumb terminals, completely useless without a big-IT subscription and an always-on internet connection.
Dunno 'bout you, but this sounds like a fight to me.

This gradual erosion of user rights is why I dig free software. I probably pay more to the FSF in donations than a Microshaft subscription would sting me, but it feels a whole lot better.
If I must have a non-free software package or game, it's DRM-free standalone download or nothing. I don't feel I'm missing out on anything here, and I can be reasonably sure my software will still work in 10 years time.
And yeah, GOG is a move in the right direction. I have re-purchased many games I own on physical media there, simply as a show-of-hands.

 

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On 7/23/2017 at 8:49 AM, HebaruSan said:

Just to confirm your findings, a search on the Steam Store turns up no such product:

plvf080.png

Hey @Badie, Kerbalizer does not work on modern browsers. Maybe it should be quietly retired until it can be updated?

Yes! I´ll work on that @HebaruSan, Thanks for the observation :D

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I would've tagged you like that Baddie, but I'm too old and ornery to use those hip new tag thingies.

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6 hours ago, steve_v said:

You don't, it's just a way to gouge a reliable revenue stream out of users without doing any actual development.
There are perfectly good free software alternatives to the products you mention, and the only reason this 'subscription' shenanigans persists is because most users are too lazy to go get them.

Yep.  I use them and am a constant advocate for them.

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A link to Kerbalizer is still featured prominently on the kerbalspaceprogram.com

It would appear nothing has been changed. How many weeks should it take to remove links to broken software that you offer?

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1 hour ago, klesh said:

How many weeks should it take to remove links to broken software that you offer?

None. It should take none weeks.

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"Due to the tools used to visualize Kerbalizer being discontinued we will no longer be selling the app in our website."

They wrote this on the page.  I mean, that had to be several tens of man hours.

Edited by klgraham1013

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On 9/4/2017 at 4:33 AM, klesh said:

A link to Kerbalizer is still featured prominently on the kerbalspaceprogram.com

It would appear nothing has been changed. How many weeks should it take to remove links to broken software that you offer?

Well, pulling the console versions from the stores took like nine months, so I go with "40 weeks".

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On 23/07/2017 at 3:47 AM, klesh said:

"The web player uses Unity Web Player, which won't work with modern browsers."

Looks like the KSP devs use to use Commodore 64s before moving to MADE ON KERBIN quantum computers... ok

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i have one on android that is completely free with all paid features, looks like it was discontnued

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