5thHorseman

The No Contract Career Challenge

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upgraded Launchpad and Astronaut complex 

 

3rd launch: Two landings on Minmus (first try, no quickloads)

Spoiler

 

The little 1st stage is supposed to give a little kick and send the unguided 2nd SRB stage on a nice gravity turn. I was hoping to recover it on parachutes but left render before it landed. @5thHorseman would stage recovery be allowed in a modded install?

rplSMLv.png

obU1NlH.png

the 3rd stage has a very low TWR and does most of the work:

igJRQ7z.png

it made it to Orbit with 2400 m/s left, technically enough for a Mun landing, but I decided to go to Minmus instead. also because I have no landing gear and the flats are flat.

vmtmf3G.png

WlvKi7W.png

NAyAJrl.png

had enough delta v left for a hop from the Flats to the greater flats

jWdBk9y.png

dRaUgwP.png

tilting the rocket and launching directly to an escape from minmus

yj4VVNl.png

P1NgsuP.png

Back home, over 1500 science!!!

uhaMry2.png

GNkchT2.png

3

 

Funds: 437k still not Nuff to upgrade R&D

 

Edit: my strategy on how to win this Challenge:

1. collect underpants

2. 

3. profit

 

No serioussly, I plan on unlocking mining as fast as possible (requires R&D Lv. 3 I think) and then make money with it.

Edited by Human Person

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43 minutes ago, Human Person said:

would stage recovery be allowed in a modded install?

Sure, it's not creating funds and from what I recall it at least waves hands at reentry heat tolerances.

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Here we go. I have officially started:

https://imgur.com/a/3q3l5

Nothing really interesting except using Bob for all early flights since I wasn't sure how For Science works (I thought I always needed a Scientist on board). He is a crappy pilot but got to orbit without help.

aB4Wbtz.jpg

I realized "For Science" is technically cheating before you unlock the astronaut complex since it resets material bays in space even when you can't EVA... In practice it isn't much cheating though since the astro complex can be upgraded after the first mission.

I went to Mun before upgrading anything and afterwards upgraded Astro Complex, Mission Center and the Big Antenna Building.

I got to Minmus and back with some issues (Bob installed a flight computer this time). Didn't have enough dV but thanks to maneuver nodes I planned a slingshot around the Mun. Something (probably Mun encounter) modified my orbit though and the maneuver node was faulty. I was shot into space with 11dV left. Had to reload and redo.

yUIyF40.jpg

 

This is where the game gets interesting though. I have basically exhausted all the worlds first cash in the Kerbin system. I only have Mun landings left but that's not much. Question is: Now what?

Upgrading Science center (which I can't do yet but perhaps could do after Mun landings) means more science but I don't really need it. I need cash and I have to go to another planet for cash.

I don't know if I'll go for light cave man rockets (sub 18t and 30 parts) and better science or bigger rockets with cave man science. We'll see.

 

 

 

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45 minutes ago, dvader said:

I wasn't sure how For Science works (I thought I always needed a Scientist on board)

You don't need a scientist on board to use it, but you do need one to automatically reset at least the bay and goo container.

46 minutes ago, dvader said:

Question is: Now what?

Gilly or Ike/Duna are obvious destinations. The don't take much more dV than Mun.

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4th launch: Mun Arch plus two suborbital hops on the mun

Spoiler

the rocket is much bigger, cause it's a recoverable SSTO 

6TSS2ZW.png

unfortunately the main engine blew up on reentry

abjkoVp.png

nPuaKmw.jpg

the payload is the lander, again with Bob on board

V4SIg55.png

eyeballed the Mun encounter pretty well if I might say so

VCZSdnn.png

on landing I saw the arch and changed the course a bit 

AiNI5H4.png

2 more suborbital hops to different biomes and back home we go. only have this picture:

0OEdWIb.png

10 m/s left, that was a bit tight

omYKuwk.png

vCLdcN1.jpg

1

Funds: 698k, R&D upgrade here I come

Science: a lot

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I suggest:

KerbalScienceExhange - exchange funds for science, or science for funds. Doing so opens up KSP to become a Commercial Space Program, whereby gathering science or mining become equally easy to advance a space program instead of just contracts.

 

Edited by inigma

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On 2/20/2018 at 11:39 AM, 5thHorseman said:

Welcome to the challenge! I don't mind either way, I like a busy thread but will read external ones too. :)

Congrats on 10k posts!!!!1!  Also, I like the little ship you took to the Mun arch. It was super cute!

 

I've been getting my sea legs back from a break in KSP, so I've been enjoying trying to figure it all out again. This evening I worked on gravity assists! They always scare me, because you leave home in a ship without nearly enough fuel to get back, and just count on the wind to bring you home. I cut it really close this time, but it turned out to be a huge success.

Finishing the last mission, Bob came back from Minmus with 3600 science in his pockets and thanks to a brief swing by interplanetary space it generated enough funds for tier2 R&D, VAB and mission control. Time to go interplanetary!

image.jpg      image.jpg
     This tippy little piggy went to Minmus. It hit 5 biomes in total!                         After a trip outside Kerbin's SOI, I netted a free capture from Mun.

I decided to make a cheap sounding-rocket shaped thing for interplanetary trips. Weighing in at 54t and 10k funds (sans experiments), it has enough deltaV to access all the nearby neighbors. When I got it to orbit though, my ambitions grew. That Mun gravity assist was nice, why not go play some billiards out at Jool? I decided to try for Bop and Pol in a single trip.

image.jpg    image.jpg
   Simple, and mostly SRB! This craft should bring me through the rest.                     Step1: A free capture and plane change at Laythe.

3fer2.jpg     2fer2.jpg
       Steps2&3: Land on Bop and Pol- Mind that plane change though                                     Step4: Thanks Tylo! Home sweet home.  

 

Current Tally:
Funds: 4M
Science: Lots

 

@Human Person  Will you be drilling for ore out and about, or right back at home? Also, Minmus looks extra minty on your system.

@Blasty McBlastblast  I'd never heard about the monetary rewards for visiting those places. Thanks for the numbers!

Edited by Cunjo Carl

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hmm, trying this just for the fun of it.

For

5thHorseman

I'm running Normal difficulty, but I do use the KER mod. Mostly because pure stock makes gathering EVA reports from all biomes a vile experience!

I also use a ton of quicksaves, not to eliminate human error (if i crash & burn i accept the pain), but because my KSP crashes to desktop very very very often. (average 3 times, for one Mun landing mission)

 

000 Press Briefing: basic hopper on a flea.

001 Hopper I:  SRB to space(not orbit)

002 base TumbleTrundle: third was a nice little tumbletrundle to run around base and collect all sciences. (stealing Blasty's design, i like it!)

Upgrade kerbalnaught facility for eva ability.

003 Orbit I : One manned polar orbit, for eva & 250km.

Upgrade launchpad to level 2. Institute admin policy for more reward from firsts.(at 25% commit)

004 Mun I: mission to Mun land then polar orbit, all biomes orbital eva report. return to Kerbin with a whopping 16m/s left in the tank.

005 MinMus I: Just replaced the 004's 9*medium srb with 3*giant, to allow maxx remaining delta-v at MinMus. Get orbital science & achieves. Upgrade R&D to tier2. Land, then spend the ~2000d/v i have to land as many places as i can, get as much science as i can (report,temp, pressure, eva,sample,goo and lab each.) got 3 type of flats, slope, lowland,midland, highland, poles. I missed one biome, think its a type of flats? Maybe great vs greater?

Minmus was GOOD for my science :)

XQpFcUP.png

Current status: maxed out research in tier1 R&D facility, 900 science left unusable.

Launchpad is level2, asstronaut is level2, R&D tier2. got 5331 science to throw at tier2, that should about fill it!

funds 463k.

I'm still limited to 30 parts, and no space comms. But who needs that? If i'm willing to wait until planes align suitably, I can bullseye eve,duna and jool easy enough. (moho and eeloo are elusive, and that other one.. whatsisname,... dros? drek? i never bother with.

 

 

Next goal: get all tier2 science. Go Jool system.

 

Edited by MarvinKitFox

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5 hours ago, Cunjo Carl said:

Will you be drilling for ore out and about, or right back at home? Also, Minmus looks extra minty on your system.

Hmm, It's possible to make money from a mining base on Minmus, but it's tedious. Maybe I'll do the cheaty drill at home thing (I know this worked in 1.2.2, has it been fixed in 1.3?)

I use Stock Visual Enhancements

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1 hour ago, Human Person said:

Hmm, It's possible to make money from a mining base on Minmus, but it's tedious. Maybe I'll do the cheaty drill at home thing (I know this worked in 1.2.2, has it been fixed in 1.3?)

I use Stock Visual Enhancements

I wouldn't call it too cheaty. You still need to get a few million credits to get mining by which point spaceflight gets a lot easier, so It's trading out some victory laps for a cheeky trick. While I doubt they've fixed it, do be aware that the amount of ore right at KSC varies heavily from game to game due to a randomly generated thing in your save file called your 'game seed'. I *cough cough* may happen to know a good one.

Spoiler

            GameSeed = 19609448
This seed has ~80% ore on a large equatorial flat on Minmus, and 7.5% at KSC. Last checked in v1.1.3

I of course don't know what either you or 5thHorseman think about swapping game seeds- I just had it so I figured I'd pass it along.

 

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I spent quite some time building a reusable interplanetary lander and trying to figure out how to get it into space with less than 30 parts and an SSTO rocket. Then I scrapped it all when I realized I couldn't refuel in space yet... With not enough cash to upgrade R&D I had to go for a very basic trip to Eve instead.

Here it is:

https://imgur.com/a/xPAAZ

The highlights are:

A very pretty explosion when trying an SSTO rocket (inspired by @Human Person success with such a beast). The explosion has a nice mushroomy quality:

ysQxBbY.jpg

Landing on Gilly. Valentina is very happy and  yes, I did plan for the photogenique Eve in the background.

vA10kOF.jpg

Returning to Kerbin I almost lost the whole thing by being just a bit too heavy. The terminal velocity was 8.5 and the lander can is rated at 8. I had to go full throttle on the I-hate-atmo-Terrier to reduce the speed to 5.5 m/s.

buqnGna.jpg

All in all, not bad though. I now have 1.3M cash and 3k science. And, Valentina got a major promotion!

weCHNkz.jpg

My main concern is that the trip may have been too expensive and I should reduce the cost of future missions to avoid any surprises in the end.

 

EDIT: I just checked the numbers and with my current planning I may have a total of 611000 funds to spend on flights from now on.

Edited by dvader

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13 hours ago, 5thHorseman said:

Okay I finally got my 3rd mission down. This one's a Mun landing with some fuel... uh... challenge-portunities.

https://imgur.com/gallery/3fYyo

You actually went out and pushed the rocket home??? I never would have thought of that. That is awesome :o !!!

How did you get 80k fund from parts when returning from Minmus? That's some Admin Building stuff I didn't know about. I always thought the Admin building was underwhelming and have ignored it. But, I see now how Leadership Initiative makes sense in this game. Still, I will try to do without it.

 

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4 hours ago, dvader said:

A very pretty explosion when trying an SSTO rocket (inspired by @Human Person success with such a beast).

Nice! I used a bigger version in this mission:

 

Upgraded Tracking. I can do interplanetary without maneuver nodes but I don't want to miss patched conics!

 

5th launch: Ike and Duna, fully recovered (nearly). A few simple quickloads were involved:

Spoiler

 

I'l try to cut out all unnecessary pictures. there's a link to a full album of all my pics for this challenge in the link below.

SSTO rocket was a bit overkill for this. you know what, I don't care. leftover delta v enabled me to do a smooth reentry without stuff blowing up 

LDDp3rK.png

and do a very precise landing approach. Trajectories helped obvioussly

ZJB6Plp.png

3wpFmD3.jpg

Eyeballing the transfer is not that hard. Did it in 2 burns to be more efficient.

7QHyXKy.png

Trajectories helped again with aerocapture and one aerobraking pass to bring apoapsis near Ike. immediate Ike encounter was very lucky.

HmPQ2wT.png

BDsKMPl.png

Now to Duna itself:

y1F3EBX.png

jlTMImM.png

F9d3th0.png

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over 1500 m/s left in Low Duna Orbit. I decided at this point to try and recover the entire spacecraft. what else should I do with the leftover delta V?

RBHjPsd.png

the transfer back home went not as smooth but I could correct it with a small radial burn in interplanetary space.

dBKTot6.png

aerocapture

trajectories helped again:

tQKdg84.png

fuel tanks and engines are way too heat resistant in this game. my setting is 100%, I should tweak that down a bit.

0NLgnd6.jpg

not everything went smooth. I flipped when entering the thicker atmosphere and nearly crashed into the ocean but the parachute deployed in the last second

jiPhV2q.png

P257tKv.jpg

uJHKGkY.png

eB7Yycx.jpg

 

3

 

This Mission made another 3500 Science and got me a lot of funding as well. maybe I can upgrade R&D to level 3 after the next mission.

 

Funds: 1,2M

 

here're all of the pictures for this challenge: No Contract Career Full Album

 

Edited by Human Person

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16 hours ago, inigma said:

KerbalScienceExhange

Not sure I'm down with that one, as it adds money (and science but money is more important here) you can't get from the stock game.

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3 minutes ago, 5thHorseman said:

Not sure I'm down with that one, as it adds money (and science but money is more important here) you can't get from the stock game.

At 100% max return, what is the funds to science ratio you can get in stock strategies?

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7 hours ago, inigma said:

At 100% max return, what is the funds to science ratio you can get in stock strategies?

Enough that I'm concerned, after getting millions from my Gilly mission with only 25% bonuses from the Leadership Initiative strategy couples with both of the science/rep to funds strategies in the 40%s. I'm not going to change it so you can't use the Admin building, but I'm going to highlight those who don't use because the challenge is a LOT harder without the strategies.

But that just means a non-stock way to get even more is even worse :D

Edited by 5thHorseman

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7 minutes ago, 5thHorseman said:

Enough that I'm concerned, after getting millions from my Gilly mission with only 25% bonuses from the Leadership Initiative strategy couples with both of the science/rep to funds strategies in the 40%s. I'm not going to change it so you can't use the Admin building, but I'm going to highlight those who don't use because the challenge is a LOT harder without the strategies.

But that just means a non-stock way to get even more is even worse :D

Wow, I always felt like getting ripped off in the admin building, wich is why I’m not using it here. Also haven’t used a lab yet, so I’ll pass on that too (have loads of science anyways).

Edited by Human Person

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And for part 5, I send 2 Kerbals to Gilly while still in the 30-part limit.

https://imgur.com/gallery/VpMx4

8 minutes ago, Human Person said:

Wow, I always felt like getting ripped off in the admin building, wich is why I’m not using it here. Also haven’t used a lab yet, so I’ll pass on that too (have loads of science anyways).

"Leadership Initiative" is basically designed for this challenge. You get a flat % bonus to all non-taken-contract gains (world firsts and whatnot) and a -% for contract gains (take tourists places, do satellites, any contract you accept). Because ALL we're getting is the ones that get a bonus, it's free money.

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@5thHorseman Are you planning to re-release the challenge for 1.4? I wont be starting a game until the release but I want to play the new release and this sounds like fun.

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4 hours ago, Antstar said:

@5thHorseman Are you planning to re-release the challenge for 1.4? I wont be starting a game until the release but I want to play the new release and this sounds like fun.

I don't know if I'll restart it or just keep it going, but one of those two for sure will happen.

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I was super close when I had to go to bed last night, so I took an uncharacteristic lunch break and finished the challenge! I'll edit in the full mission report later, but because I'm kinda excited, here's the facility :D .

 

image.jpg

Stock normal, all funds from world's first.

 

I stuck with my little 1.25m ship for everything, because it was cheap and easy to use. It wound up not having enough deltaV to do everything I wanted, but it had plenty for getting through to the end. And it was cheap! I just started launching places.

  image.jpg    image.jpg
                 Korolev Kross! Val heads to Eeloo orbit                            The return from Eeloo orbit was especially firey.          

image.jpg     image.jpg
          A trip to Gilly was especially lucrative for the difficulty.                          And a trip to Ike finished it off!         

 

Missions:
Mun, Minmus, Laythe flyby->Bop->Pol->Tylo flyby, Eeloo orbit, Gilly, Ike. That's it. Thanks for the challenge, @5thHorseman! I'm  looking forward to seeing everyone else's approaches for these deep space missions (or the cunning plans for avoiding them :) )

 

Edited by Cunjo Carl

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5 hours ago, Cunjo Carl said:

I was super close when I had to go to bed last night, so I took an uncharacteristic lunch break and finished the challenge! I'll edit in the full mission report later, but because I'm kinda excited, here's the facility :D .

image.jpg

 

Stock normal, all funds from world's first.

Nice!!

Interestingly enough, since I never paid attention in the pre 1.0 days or maybe it changed, I have played KSP for 4 years and never seen the upgraded SPH or admin building :0.0:

Is lounging in the pool another situation :wink:

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