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ej89

Why can't I exceed 15 contracts with fully leveled-up Mission Control?

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Hi,

I'm playing a career mode game, and upgraded the Mission Control building to Level 3 (maximum) a long time ago. The game says this upgrade should allow "unlimited number of active contracts". Although the upgrade did indeed remove the hard limit on the number of contracts, I found that the game simply didn't offer me any more contracts once I had 14 active. Whenever I'd complete a contract, I'd be offered a new one, one-for-one, but no more than that. One day when I completed a story contract, the game offered me two in its place, which expanded the "rotation" to 15, but a few contracts later, for no apparent reason, I completed one and was not offered a new one, reducing it back to 14. The other day I completed a non-storyline contract and was offered two in its place, so it's now back up to 15.

Ozf2hHV.png

Does anyone know what's going on here? Is this "intended" behavior by the game? An arbitrary technical limitation perhaps (e.g. due to the contracts being stored in a fixed-size array in the game code)?

I would really like to be able to have more than 15 active contracts. Right now, more than half of the effective "slots" are tied up with long-term missions that I can't (or don't want to) start yet - e.g. I need to unlock the requisite tech tree nodes to complete ore contracts, and I don't want to skip any of the storyline contracts (thus I can't escape Kerbin until I've finished exploring Minmus, since that would skip that contract). This leaves only a few slots for active turnover of contracts, which makes it difficult to e.g. get enough tourists on the books to fill up a big, efficient craft to take them to the Mun.

Is there any way to "fix" this? Perhaps a setting, or a mod? It seems weird for the "size of the market" to be effectively capped like this; one would expect the market to increase as I demonstrate the ability to perform more ambitious missions more efficiently.

Thanks!

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@ej89:

The cake is a lie.  So is the 'unlimited contract' feature of Mission Control.  @nightingale's Contract Configurator will let you have up to 18, I think (and it offers some other features that you may like, so have a look), but I believe what you'd really like is found in Gamedata\Squad\Contracts.  It's a file called Contracts.cfg, and near the top is a line that says 'AverageAvailableContracts = 10'.  Change this to what you like.  Just be mindful that there is a limit for a reason, so watch out for issues that may arise from raising the limit to something absurdly high.

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I noticed this as well, the "unlimited contracts" term is a bit misleading.

When I stop getting offered mission I typically take it as a sign I really need to actually complete some lol.

Still, the building upgrade tooltip and/or description should be clarified.

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Well it's not actually a lie. You can accept as many contracts as you want... It says nothing about how many will be offered.

We use weasel words for a reason. :D

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4 minutes ago, ej89 said:

Regarding Contract Configurator, it looks like a "dependency" type mod mainly intended to be used by other mods that add contracts. Does it actually provide any player-side functionality in and of itself? The mods built on it look pretty cool though, I might try some of them.

Pretty much - although one of the last changes that I had made to the mod was changing how mission control works and making *every* contract always available, but replacing it with a limit to the number of contracts you can accept (which is modified both by game difficulty settings and mission control building level).  So you'd still technically get that functionality without any contract packs

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27 minutes ago, ej89 said:

So you're saying that with ContractConfigurator, there will always be contracts available (no matter how many I have active) but there's a limit on how many I can have ongoing? (I see in the forum thread for CC that there's an overall limit, plus limits for each prestige level.) What does this limit max out at for the fully-upgraded mission control?

I don't remember the actual numbers - they should be visible in game.

27 minutes ago, ej89 said:

I noticed in Contracts.cfg that letting a contract "pass by" (even without actively declining it, or even looking at it) will de-weight that contract so the game gives you ones like it less often in the future. Is this still the case in CC's new system if I'm maxed out on ongoing contracts and can't accept ones that are offered?

It'll still use the contract weight system for stock contracts - but not for CC contracts.

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10 hours ago, ej89 said:

Do you (or anyone here) know what relationship the AverageAvailableContracts value has to the number of contracts that that the game actually "maxes out" at? Clearly, it's not a one-to-one correspondence, because the default value is 10, yet it's maxing out at 14-15 active contracts for me (and others in the Reddit post report 13).

I'd be guessing as to the exact relationship, but the idea is that as you take contracts but don't complete them, there's a law of diminishing returns.  Note that 'available' contracts for you right now is not 15, it's zero, and that implies that the diminishing return begins to assert itself when you're about halfway to the average.  I have not tested this myself (hence the guessing), so that may be completely wrong.  If you were to set AverageAvailableContracts to 20, it could be that you would then start to see offers go down at about 10 but would be able to squeeze 30 contracts total out of the system, or it could be that you would only see diminishing returns at 15 contracts but could max out at 25.  Or it could be something completely different; as I said, it's not well-tested.

10 hours ago, ej89 said:

Oh, and should I ever be expecting to get tourist contracts for more than six passengers at once in the stock game? Kind of wondering because I just built a Mun lander for up to 15 of them at once (in anticipation of future growth)...

The only contracts I've seen for more than six tourists are mod contracts.  That's another reason to look at Contract Configurator--specifically, Tourism Plus.  Take a look at the screenshot in its first post and decide whether that interests you, but the important part is that you can eventually get contracts for up to 50 kerbals at a time.  It also has some other interesting contracts such as the Space Camp, where you take 13 tourists and three instructors into orbit for a month and a half.  When you're done, three of the tourists join the space program.

Of course, if you want to put together some kind of large spaceliner for a mission to Jool and don't want to waste the construction on six tourists, you can always take multiple Jool tourist contracts and send everyone together ... assuming that the game lets you have more than one at a time.  If not, you know where to change the setting.

10 hours ago, ej89 said:

Edit: OK, one more question...I noticed in Contracts.cfg that under Station type contracts, it says:


		ContextualChance = 75 // The maximum chance for a station expansion request
		ContextualAssets = 2 // The amount of stations required around the planet to reach that chance

Does this mean that I will get "expand this existing station" contract offers if and only if I already have at least two stations orbiting the body in question? And how does the game determine what constitutes a "station" for this purpose? Does it just look at how I've categorized the vessel in the Tracking Station (ship, lander, probe, station, etc.)?

No, it means that having two stations is necessary to get the maximum chance for an expansion contract.  With one station, you can still get expansion contracts, but there's a lower chance of getting them.  I'd have to look at the rest of the file, but I think that if you have only one station, it tends to offer contracts to build a second over expanding the first.

I'm not certain whether the game requires a station to be marked as such in the Tracking Station--I suspect so, but I've been surprised to get a World's Firsts reward for station construction just from docking a lander to a transfer vehicle while in Kerbin orbit; it seems that the game automatically thinks of a station as having a docking port, antenna, power generators, and at least a six-kerbal crew capacity (you may note that these requirements are always present in station-building contracts).  I do know that Tourism Plus won't give station visitation contracts for tourists unless the station is categorised as such in the Tracking Station.

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1 hour ago, Zhetaan said:

 it seems that the game automatically thinks of a station as having a docking port, antenna, power generators, and at least a six-kerbal crew capacity (you may note that these requirements are always present in station-building contracts).

That is what the game think is a station and what the contract system consider a station (except for the crew capacity, game asks for only five for me, and maybe would even consider stations with lower capacity). How you categorize the vessel is not relevant for stock contracts.

 

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1 hour ago, Zhetaan said:

@ej89:

The cake is a lie.  So is the 'unlimited contract' feature of Mission Control.  @nightingale's Contract Configurator will let you have up to 18, I think (and it offers some other features that you may like, so have a look), but I believe what you'd really like is found in Gamedata\Squad\Contracts.  It's a file called Contracts.cfg, and near the top is a line that says 'AverageAvailableContracts = 10'.  Change this to what you like.  Just be mindful that there is a limit for a reason, so watch out for issues that may arise from raising the limit to something absurdly high.

Ah, that's what I was wondering, thanks! The Contracts.cfg file was an interesting read...very informative about the kinds of contracts I can/should expect now and in the future (and what conditions I need to have met to be offered some of them).

Now that I know the magic keyword to search for, it wasn't too hard to find reports of others wondering the same thing: https://www.reddit.com/r/KerbalSpaceProgram/comments/37x63q/psa_if_youre_finding_the_10ish_active_contracts/. I was beginning to wonder if it was "just me"! :-)

Would certainly be nice if this was configurable in the game GUI (like many other career mode difficulty options), if anyone from Squad is reading this. :-)

Do you (or anyone here) know what relationship the AverageAvailableContracts value has to the number of contracts that that the game actually "maxes out" at? Clearly, it's not a one-to-one correspondence, because the default value is 10, yet it's maxing out at 14-15 active contracts for me (and others in the Reddit post report 13).

Regarding Contract Configurator, it looks like a "dependency" type mod mainly intended to be used by other mods that add contracts. Does it actually provide any player-side functionality in and of itself? The mods built on it look pretty cool though, I might try some of them.

 

Oh, and should I ever be expecting to get tourist contracts for more than six passengers at once in the stock game? Kind of wondering because I just built a Mun lander for up to 15 of them at once (in anticipation of future growth)...

Edit: OK, one more question...I noticed in Contracts.cfg that under Station type contracts, it says:

		ContextualChance = 75 // The maximum chance for a station expansion request
		ContextualAssets = 2 // The amount of stations required around the planet to reach that chance

Does this mean that I will get "expand this existing station" contract offers if and only if I already have at least two stations orbiting the body in question? And how does the game determine what constitutes a "station" for this purpose? Does it just look at how I've categorized the vessel in the Tracking Station (ship, lander, probe, station, etc.)?

Edited by ej89
so many questions...

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8 minutes ago, nightingale said:

Pretty much - although one of the last changes that I had made to the mod was changing how mission control works and making *every* contract always available, but replacing it with a limit to the number of contracts you can accept (which is modified both by game difficulty settings and mission control building level).  So you'd still technically get that functionality without any contract packs

So you're saying that with ContractConfigurator, there will always be contracts available (no matter how many I have active) but there's a limit on how many I can have ongoing? (I see in the forum thread for CC that there's an overall limit, plus limits for each prestige level.) What does this limit max out at for the fully-upgraded mission control?

I noticed in Contracts.cfg that letting a contract "pass by" (even without actively declining it, or even looking at it) will de-weight that contract so the game gives you ones like it less often in the future. Is this still the case in CC's new system if I'm maxed out on ongoing contracts and can't accept ones that are offered?

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