5thHorseman

The No Contract Career Challenge

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Landed on: Mun, Minmus, Duna, Ike, Gilly, Dres and Moho so far. Now heading for the outer System. :D

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No Contract - Hard Mode.  Stock + KER and Alarm Clock.

I just stumbled onto this post.  I didn't even know the challenge was going on.  I always liked playing low tech/restricted games and while waiting for Making History I decided to see how far I could get with no contracts in hard mode, or to see if it was even possible.  It turns out it is.  And once you can unlock Science Labs you can generate basically infinite amounts of money (all be it very slowly) so at that point the game is 'won'.

The game went something like:

  • LT series:  Launch tests for science and the early distance and altitude records.  
  • Long Jump series:  First suborbital launches, enough science for Science Jr.
  • Phaeton series:  First orbiter, first rendezvous, first Munar flyby.  
  • Phaeton II series:  First Munar orbit, first Minmus flyby.  Enough science for OCTO probe.
  • Sunstrider probe:  First solar orbit, communication lost no science.
  • Mjolnir probe series:  Soft crasher Mun and (later) Minmus probes.  Mun probe damaged, no science.  Minmus probe successful.
  • UPGRADED TRACKING STATION
  • Wanderer series:  'Dead stick' planetary flybys (no comms).  Moho flyby (failed, total loss of mission), Eve flyby, Duna+Ike flybys (luck!), Jool flyby.
  • Phaeton/KerLab:  Phaeton II with docking port docks with KerLab module (modified Phaeton with probe core).  First dock, first transfer, first station.  Sent to Mun for firsts.  Finally sent to Minmus for firsts.
  • UPGRADED ASTRONAUT COMPLEX
  • Phaeton/KerLab cont: EVAs in low Minmus orbit, returned to Kerbin.  SCIENCE!
  • UPGRADE LAUNCH PAD
  • Monitor:  Kerbin EVAs,  Mun EVAs, Mun landing, walk, flag, and return. More SCIENCE!
  • Phaeton III:  Duna orbit, EVAs, return.  Screwed up, should have added a 'lab' capsule for docking, transfer, station rewards.
  • BEGAN LEADERSHIP INITIATIVE at 25%
  • Discover:  Jeb's one way trip to the Jool system in an uprated Phaeton plus docked 'KerLab' capsule.  Orbit, dock, station, EVA + flybys of all the moons.  I left him in low Jool orbit and was planning on mounting a rescue mission later.
  • UPGRADE MISSION CONTROL (part way through the Discover mission making moon flyby planning possible).
  • Phaeton III/EveLab:  Eve orbit and return, EVA, docking/station/transfer, Gilly flyby.  EveLab capsule configured as a probe dead stick lander with landing successful.
  • UPGRADE R&D! (this is the game winner)
  • MinStation/MEM:  Science lab with Minmus excursion module plus extra fuel.  Landing, walk, flags.  Enough fuel for all biomes.  Bob does science!  

That's basically where I stopped.  I've cleared the Level 2 tech tree and am banking science for sale.  I thought Jeb was in a safe orbit but he got kicked out of the Jool system during the other missions.  Fortunately it was into a basically circular solar orbit so rescue actually got easier.  I'm still limited to 30 part rockets and have only 200,000 left for future missions so it will need to wait.  I would probably mount a cheap Duna landing and return and send some probes to the unvisited planets to get enough cash to upgrade the VAB.  Torn about upgrading the Admin building.  I want to start selling science but Leadership is a great bonus and very costly to enact.  I don't want to give it up.   I still have Jool moon orbits and landing, plus the other planets.  Still lots of firsts to gather up.   It may be cheaper to upgrade in order to sell the science. 

Lessons I learned:  The docking/space station rewards are easily the best in terms of cost/benefit.  Never unlock parts you absolutely don't need.  I lost a bunch due to unlocking things I didn't REALLY need.  The 30 part limit is a lot less limiting than I thought it would be.  Lack of mission planning probably cost me around +20% delta-v for planetary missions.  Don't do 'iffy' missions.  I nearly went broke when my Moho mission failed.  If the followup Eve mission failed, I would have been done (No Sell-Out was my only rule).  If you are willing to leave  your poor Kerbal in orbit, Jool is hugely valuable.  Thuds suddenly became useful.  I've literally never used them before but I found them very handy for adding a little oomph without too many parts.

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Eeloo is done too. Parts lost so far: 0.

Next is a reusable Jool 5, but it turns out that this is a challenge on its own, taking more time than all my progress so far :confused:

And then there is this purple thing too...

I think I will expand my challenge to also unlock the entire tech tree, and land everywhere. :D

 but somehow my motivation is down at the moment...

It's also a little frustrating that 1.4 is out now... But I won't start over a third time :/

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I just can't decide how to do Jool...

ISRU SSTO to all 5?

ISRU lander for the 4 airless moons plus a laythe SSTO?

Or a big mothership with a non atmospheric lander plus a laythe plane?

 

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1 hour ago, Kergarin said:

ISRU lander for the 4 airless moons plus a laythe SSTO?

This one

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22 hours ago, Kergarin said:

It's also a little frustrating that 1.4 is out now... But I won't start over a third time :/

I am considering this challenge to be for all versions, so if you want to upgrade (and it won't affect your save, I've not paid that much attention to that side of things) I won't mind.

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Just returned from my Jool 5 1/2 mission. :D

Parts lost so far: 0

Buildings upgraded: all

Tech tree unlocks: all

Money left: 839.695

That's just enough to build my reusable to everywhere ship, which can plant the last missing flag on eve. :D But I don't actually have to execute this again? Have I? :confused:

 

That was a hard piece of work and it will take days cutting all those videos together :o but I'm really happy now, thanks for this great challenge :)

Edited by Kergarin

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It's done. Weeks of work in 26minutes. But I'm not happy with the music...

Any suggestion of good matching free to use music? :D

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On 3/25/2018 at 5:39 PM, Kergarin said:

It's done. Weeks of work in 26minutes. But I'm not happy with the music...

Any suggestion of good matching free to use music? :D

All the stuff in the game is royalty free :)

Other than that I got nothing. Can't wait to see the vids!

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On 3/25/2018 at 5:39 PM, Kergarin said:

It's done. Weeks of work in 26minutes. But I'm not happy with the music...

Any suggestion of good matching free to use music? :D

Would need to see the video first....

Youtube channel Argofox might have something. Not sure though.

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Very well done @Kergarin! That final Eve SSTO was amazing. I can barely get off of Eve, and most things I build that can, have trouble landing. You didn't even need to do it for the challenge and you made it look easy.

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5 hours ago, 5thHorseman said:

Very well done @Kergarin! That final Eve SSTO was amazing. I can barely get off of Eve, and most things I build that can, have trouble landing. You didn't even need to do it for the challenge and you made it look easy.

Thanks!

That final ship is stolen from my infinitely reusable tour to everywhere 

 https://youtu.be/iIuSCWxPZm4 

It felt wrong to go everywhere else and don't visit eve. And I was verry happy to see, that I have just enough money left to build this :D

It looks way easier than it was. But this happens to all my videos... Month of work, days of cutting videos... And then I see the first cut and think: "what?! That's was it all?" :o

 

Edited by Kergarin

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2 hours ago, Kergarin said:

It looks way easier than it was. But this happens to all my videos... Month of work, days of cutting videos... And then I see the first cut and think: "what?! That's was it all?" :o

That's actually the main reason I stopped doing KSP videos. For regular games it's play 2 hours, edit 10 minutes, get 2 hours of video. For KSP it's play 2 hours, edit for 2 hours, get 15 minutes of video.

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1 hour ago, 5thHorseman said:

That's actually the main reason I stopped doing KSP videos. For regular games it's play 2 hours, edit 10 minutes, get 2 hours of video. For KSP it's play 2 hours, edit for 2 hours, get 15 minutes of video.

Well that's actually pretty good, I need weeks for 15 minutes :D

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On 4/4/2018 at 3:37 AM, Kergarin said:

Well that's actually pretty good, I need weeks for 15 minutes :D

It goes to show who can edit well and knows what is worth keeping or not! Granted I am a stay at home father and have inordinate amounts of time to play KSP, but my videos seem like rambling, long winded trash in comparison to your two, @5thHorseman and @Kergarin.

@Kergarin, you have inspired me once again..... damn you. Pulling off the suborbital dock at Eve is the pinnacle achievement in KSP as far as I am concerned. In fact I am currently using the mission builder to make a mission of it so that I can PRACTICE :wink:  

@5thHorseman do you think it possible to pull off a combination of these challenges:  No Contract + Caveman + Ultimate (Just Jim) + Jool 5?  This is assuming that you DO only accept the single contract for the Ultimate, unless you don't actually need to for that challenge.... of which I am still unclear. Anyone's thoughts on this endeavor would be welcome.

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Epic. I slowed it down in playback so I could follow it better.  I learned some things... whether I can do them or not, is a different question :wink:   

Down to the wire coming back up from Tylo, not much margin lol :)   I like the ultra compact lander. "Legs? who needs 'em," just land slower  :wink: 

That was a LOT of aerobreaking orbits on EVE. I don't know that i'd have that much patience :wink:   What holds Omega together? Autostrut magic? Once it redocked, to a single standard docking port (all I noticed) I thought it would shake itself apart under acceleration. 

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2 hours ago, zanie420 said:


@5thHorseman do you think it possible to pull off a combination of these challenges:  No Contract + Caveman + Ultimate (Just Jim) + Jool 5?  This is assuming that you DO only accept the single contract for the Ultimate, unless you don't actually need to for that challenge.... of which I am still unclear. Anyone's thoughts on this endeavor would be welcome.

I don't see why not, and if you do it, I'll happily make a "no contracts" exception for you if you hack in the Ultimate Challenge contract and complete it after you otherwise win so you don't get to utilize the science, money, or rep. Or if you hack those out of the payment. Or if you just do it without the contract, of course. :)

Note a Jool 5 is contained within the Ultimate contract, and you're severely hampering yourself in a Caveman save by not taking contracts but hey, others have done crazy Caveman stuff that I thought unreachable (like going to Duna and the like).

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8 hours ago, zanie420 said:

 

It goes to show who can edit well and knows what is worth keeping or not! Granted I am a stay at home father and have inordinate amounts of time to play KSP, but my videos seem like rambling, long winded trash in comparison to your two, @5thHorseman and @Kergarin.

@Kergarin, you have inspired me once again..... damn you. Pulling off the suborbital dock at Eve is the pinnacle achievement in KSP as far as I am concerned. In fact I am currently using the mission builder to make a mission of it so that I can PRACTICE :wink:  

@5thHorseman do you think it possible to pull off a combination of these challenges:  No Contract + Caveman + Ultimate (Just Jim) + Jool 5?  This is assuming that you DO only accept the single contract for the Ultimate, unless you don't actually need to for that challenge.... of which I am still unclear. Anyone's thoughts on this endeavor would be welcome.

Thanks :)

I originally planned to use on Eve SSTO for this mission. https://youtu.be/C6ChB20KshE

But Eve's atmosphere was changed in 1.3 and this would have become crazy large to work. So I decided to use that suborbital docking. But I have to mention, that this was first done by Stratzenblitz75 https://youtu.be/MTkObR6-Bs8 . I have just scaled it down to only use 2 components.

The mission you are building sounds interesting. :)

 

Except for the caveman part, your suggestion is what I did. (if you add this grand tour to my career video https://youtu.be/iIuSCWxPZm4 ) 

I think adding could be possible, if you don't waste to much money on it. 

 

7 hours ago, basic.syntax said:

Epic. I slowed it down in playback so I could follow it better.  I learned some things... whether I can do them or not, is a different question :wink:   

Down to the wire coming back up from Tylo, not much margin lol :)   I like the ultra compact lander. "Legs? who needs 'em," just land slower  :wink: 

That was a LOT of aerobreaking orbits on EVE. I don't know that i'd have that much patience :wink:   What holds Omega together? Autostrut magic? Once it redocked, to a single standard docking port (all I noticed) I thought it would shake itself apart under acceleration. 

Thanks :)

If I can help with things you have seen in the video, just ask me. :wink:

This lander was absolutely optimized to be a small SSTO lander for Tylo. Landing legs just add to much weight :D by the way, these oscar b tanks have a lot of fuel compared to their size.

That massive aerobreaking is the price for having just two ship parts for the suborbital docking. It needs every dV that can be saved to do this.

Yes, omega is held together by autostruts at the bottom, and it seems they automatically reconnect after docking. When autostruts came out, I first considered them as cheating. But I think, if you use them to create something realistic, then they are ok. And in this case, the rocket slides in so tight at the bottom, that they just simulate some kind of rails at the bottom.

 

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Sorry for grave digging thins thread :D

I had a look at my no contract Career video, and i was verry unhappy with it... so I started over again! :D

Less launches! Better looking crafts! Now with more Spaceplanes!

 

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3 hours ago, Kergarin said:

[snip]

I did see your earlier challenge submission and that was really good. And now I just realized that you'll create another completely reusable Eve Lander and that'll blow my socks off.

Good luck!

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