Pthigrivi

Career mode: fixing what's broke

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Posted (edited)

This has been talked about a lot here, and I know a lot of folks have fairly radical ideas about how to re-build career mode from the ground up. Let me say from the outset: if this is what you want to do this probably isn't the thread for you. I fully agree with a lot of players that career mode needs some work, but it seems to me that what we have just really isn't all that bad. Not perfect, obviously, but getting thereMany players (most possibly?) play some version of career mode and love it. I'll also submit from a pure development standpoint it is next to unfathomable that Squad would at this point utterly scrap everything they've done since 2014 and start over.

I'd like to offer then a series of ideas I think could tune-up and expand upon what we already have to make career mode a truly great game. The hardest problem, always, is that there are about as many ways to play KSP as there are players. That flexibility and dynamism is what gives it such potential, but it also can lead to unstructured, muddy game design. The goal of career then, I think, is to create a strong backbone set of mechanics that enable as many playstyles as possible while sticking to the core of what KSP is about: building rockets and flying them.

Fog of Science:

Science is probably the section that needs the most TLC. I know there are those that disagree but to me the central issue is not the underlying mechanic (gather science, unlock parts), but in how that plays as an in-flight experience. Science points are ubiquitous, which is nice because you can go out there and fly where you want and gather them, but the actual process of gathering them ends up being fairly monotonous. This monotony is reenforced by the fact that the planetary surfaces themselves are fairly monotonous. Nothing feels like science because there's nothing really out there to discover. Here's what I think we could do to fix that:

1) Add surface features with a more sciency feel like ice crystals, geologic formations, geysers, volcanoes, signs of life, etc and spread them across the planetary surfaces. 

2) Make those features mapable from orbit, highlighting biomes where they are common and placing automatic waypoints when important features and anomalies are spotted. Biomes should also be visible in map mode. 

3) Differentiate the value of different biomes and give surface features science bonuses so players are incentivized to find them rather than land any old place.

4) Give on-screen notices that new science is available and a science action group to gather and store it.

5) Give the experiments themselves additional perks in flight and/or information valuable to the player later. For instance thermometers could enable visible heat bars, barometers could enable flight trajectory factoring drag, having a gravoli could increase the chance surface features are mapped, etc.

X4HmvGh.jpg

What this produces is in effect a fog of war/discovery feel to the game. The planets are just blank orbs from space, and its the process of unveiling and discovering whats on the surface that allows you to develop. You're also being given strong incentives to bring rovers and learn things like precision landing. Streamlining is also important: clearing away all of the repetitive clicking to check when you've entered a new biome, gather and store that information so players can focus on flying and exploration.

Rejiggered Tech Tree:

Another problem we have going on I think is many players are feeling left out by the current structure of the tech tree. Now of course we can't exactly suit the tree to optimize things for everyone, but I do think we could do better for two groups of players: the folks who like planes and the folks who like to start un-manned. Here's one I thew together for another thread:

g4rXkoR.jpg

The main point being to give stronger branches right at the beginning to allow players to dive into their preferred mode of play. I also think there are a number of other ways the tech tree could be more tightly optimized which you can find here if you're interested.

Better flight tools: 

Another perennial ask is for some better aids to help new and old players get to where they want to go with as little time-wasting as possible. Players should at least have the opportunity to optimize their vessels, find transfer windows and manage multiple active flights without mods or going to a browser. 

1) Add Delta-V and TWR readouts in the VAB/SPH and in flight.

2) Include a stock alarm clock for setting reminders on manuvers, encounters, transfer windows, etc.

3) Include a transfer window finder. This needn't be a list of dates, in fact its probably better if players can play with optimization a bit. Something like Transfer Window Planner with an orrery so you can see how it works?

4) Improve maneuver nodes. They're really fiddly at the moment, so either something close to Precise Node or Alshain's maneuver widget would be fantastic. Better Burn Time also provides some much more useful flight information. 

Make Milestones the MainQuest:

KSP doesn't really have an end goal, nor should it in my opinion. The open-endedness of it really is what makes it great. It could though benefit from a backbone set of goals for players to work towards. The best example of these are the Milestones--flying to, landing, and planting flags on each planet and moon. The funny thing about Milestones is they're actually the main contracts that everyone is most interested in and yet they're almost completely invisible within the UI. I quite like that that they're passive and don't rely on any linear track to unlock, but most new (and old) players would be forgiven for not knowing they exist. As soon as you open Mission Control they should be right up front and visible to players so they know the big headline missions they could pursue and what the rewards would be for achieving them. One way to do this would be to break mission control into separate tabs for each world, with the main exploration contracts listed at the top and any other contracts associated with that planet listed below:

PGuLPPF.jpg

These contracts could either be constantly available, or as I'd prefer, active automatically with their advances becoming available with sufficient reputation. In either case they should be constantly visible in Mission Control so players at least knew they are there. Having planetary tabs would also be handy with information on transfer windows, dV requirements, atmospheric information etc. that could be filled automatically or by using experiments^^.

Better Strategery:

So, the current set of strategies are... fine. At the moment they seem more like expedient hacks to fix broken mechanics though. What the Administration building really needs are more strategies like Transponders and Leadership Initiative that allow a player to make gains on a given style of play. They also need to be more flexible, allowing players to pick up and drop strategies as their careers evolve and progress. The main thing I'd like to see them do however is give players more direct control over the type of career missions they'd like to pursue.

1) Create a suite of strategies that directly effect the probability of a specific contract type coming up in Mission Control. For instance Tourism Inititiative, Rescue Program or Mining Enterprise.

This would give players a little more direct control over the type of space program they'd like to develop. They also would help players from getting locked into or pigeonholed by the contract weighting system with one set of contracts early that they may not be interested in later.

Make Time a thing:

This is another huge factor that I know a lot of players are interested in. Its of course very tricky because of time warp--anything that comes with a benefit over time encourages players to just time-warp through it (see the Mobile Processing Lab). Worse, if you try to hinder that with factors that cost over time it punishes players for time-warping when they really need to,  something that's desperately difficult to calibrate when some players want to play around KSOI and others want to warp out to Jool. I think there are a couple of ways that this could all be managed, however:


1) Give Milestone contracts calendar based bonuses--ie, if you get to the Mun or to Duna before X date you receive World First bonus rewards. 

2) Give building and research upgrades a duration to completion on a toggle. Rocket construction could be based on cost, with construction speeds increased with VAB/SHP upgrades.

3) Open the door for experiments that take time to complete.

4) Add life-support with a toggle. With a simplified habitation mechanic I think USI-LS is basically ready for stock. 

This way you have to think carefully before you just time-warp through research and construction, because you risk missing World First bonuses and/or wasting LS resources. I think with toggles and difficulty settings this could bring so much to game strategy without overcomplicating things for players who aren't interested. 


So that's what I got. I think there are a bunch of other areas as well (fully fleshing out Experience perks and making some refinements to building upgrades etc.) but I think this covers the main sections of the game that are lacking at the moment. 

Edited by Pthigrivi
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Posted (edited)

@Pthigrivi A well thought out and presented set of ideas.  And i think the approach of adding to and/or tweaking the existing system is the most likely, and practical, way forward.

One tweak i wondered about was to link the science gathering to the 'Hack Gravity' cheat and TWR indication. Once you perform appropriate experiments this information becomes accessible in the form of named 'presets' for gravity level with a 'Test at X gravity' option from the VAB/SPH (very handy for setting springs and dampers), and KER style body specific TWR info.

Edited by pandaman

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49 minutes ago, pandaman said:

One tweak i wondered about was to link the science gathering to the 'Hack Gravity' cheat and TWR indication. Once you perform appropriate experiments this information becomes accessible in the form of named 'presets' for gravity level with a 'Test at X gravity' option from the VAB/SPH and KER style body specific TWR info.

Yeah this exactly what I mean when when I suggest experiments produce/unlock information valuable to players. This is already a really complicated game and so I think its important to keep things as simple as possible, but if for instance you landed a probe with a gravoli and a barometer on it on the surface you could then go back to Mission Control and see the dV needed to reach orbit and TWR from that planet's surface in the VAB, thats the kind of automatic/in the background information gathering Im talking about. 

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3 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

Rejiggered Tech Tree:

Perhaps having 3-4 stock variants of the tech tree that are selectable at game launch.  Allows a player to select the style of path they want to play.

3 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

1) Add Delta-V and TWR readouts in the VAB/SPH and in flight

While we know this is a contentious issue, @HebaruSan had a wonderful idea to include a tool that forces you to do the math, but has all the tools needed to do it easily in game, with a low profile GUI.  I much prefer this method, as it keeps the educational aspect of the game intact, while still making it more playable for everybody. 

3 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

2) Include a stock alarm clock for setting reminders on manuvers, encounters, transfer windows, etc.

Hear Hear. 

3 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

4) Improve maneuver nodes. They're really fiddly at the moment, so either something close to Precise Node or Alshain's maneuver widget would be fantastic. Better Burn Time also provides some much more useful flight information. 

I have no issue with MN's as they are now.  That said, I haven't used any mods for it either, so maybe I don't know what I'm missing.   But the fact that I find MN's to be completely fine tells me this should be a low priority, but I won't object to work being done on it. 

3 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:



PGuLPPF.jpg

OK, I saw this before reading, and dang you, I spent a few minutes trying to find this screen.

 

3 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

1) Give Milestone contracts calendar based bonuses--ie, if you get to the Mun or to Duna before X date you receive World First bonus rewards.

This would imply there is a competing space program.  Now players want to play that one, or figure out the story behind it. 

3 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

3) Add life-support with a toggle. With a simplified habitation mechanic I think USI-LS is basically ready for stock. 

I haven't played with USI yet, but I believe it's a non-simple LS mod, yes?  I play with snacks, as I wanted a LS mod, but wanted to keep it simple.  I think that should be the basis of any LS implementation into stock, simplicity.  One resource that is consumed over time based on the number of kerbals consuming it.  A simple converter to recover/create new resource.  And a penalty for a lack of the resource.    I know USI is a glorious mod (spoken in @Kottabos voice), but it may be a bit much for a stock implentation.  Stock fuels are simplified, electrical is simplified, everything is simplified vs their RL counterpart, a stock LS should be too.

 

Well put post.   

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1 hour ago, Gargamel said:

I haven't played with USI yet, but I believe it's a non-simple LS mod, yes?

USI-LS is quite simple.  Not to far from Snacks actually.  I believe you're thinking of MKS, maybe.  Having both MKS and USI-LS creates the complexity I believe you're thinking of.

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, Gargamel said:

OK, I saw this before reading, and dang you, I spent a few minutes trying to find this screen.

Oh Photoshop <3
 

20 hours ago, Gargamel said:

This would imply there is a competing space program.  Now players want to play that one, or figure out the story behind it. 

This is a sensitive issue because most players like to create their own stories while playing. What I like about a World First bonus is it creates the vague implication of a competitor, but doesn't define for the player what that competitor is. That way they could decide for themselves if they're competing with a nation state or competing company or whatever they liked while still adding a time-sensitive pressure to play.
 

20 hours ago, Gargamel said:

I haven't played with USI yet, but I believe it's a non-simple LS mod, yes?  I play with snacks, as I wanted a LS mod, but wanted to keep it simple.  I think that should be the basis of any LS implementation into stock, simplicity.  One resource that is consumed over time based on the number of kerbals consuming it.  A simple converter to recover/create new resource.  And a penalty for a lack of the resource.    I know USI is a glorious mod (spoken in @Kottabos voice), but it may be a bit much for a stock implentation.  Stock fuels are simplified, electrical is simplified, everything is simplified vs their RL counterpart, a stock LS should be too.

Yeah USI is also really simple but adds a little more than snacks, I believe. There are 3 LS resources: Kerbals convert Supplies into Mulch over time, and with Fertilizer and greenhouses you can convert the Mulch back into Supplies. You can also mine Fertilizer, which allows for longer term bases on other planets. I think this is about as complicated as you can make it and have it still be fun game mechanic. 

Edited by Pthigrivi
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I too would like to see a (simple and toggleable) stock implementation of Life Support.

I agree that 'Time' is a biggy too...  I think it needs some form of construction time, and long term experiments (such as temperature readings on a planet's surface) that give relatively small amounts of 'science' on activation, but when left running it accumulates more data (and science) which, could enable more accurate 'predictions' for other aspects (like working out how many radiators you need).

Time warp would be used exactly as it is now -  to fast forward to the next event you need to attend to, so an alarm clock is also essential.

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I'm on a PS4.

I totally agree with this post. But I don't want to kill my machine by overworking it.

Tech tree - Is mostly fine the way it is, but I felt as though I was always after that one single part. Perhaps the tech levels/parts could be broken down further for a more focused research feel.

Construction time - I don't know if this is even a thing in PS4, but I'll suggest this; Once a design has been launched it's far faster to build again, minor alterations means it takes a slightly longer time to build.

Biomes and Science Anomalies  - The console players don't have quick access to an open google tab, so I love the idea of having the biomes and science features marked on my map. Perhaps make Kerb-net access a requirement to have interesting or unexplored areas marked for players ( once they're discovered by scan? ). Science really needs to give players a heads up that something previously undiscovered has been found. "We haven't looked at the Far side of the moon before... take some science". Perhaps the zones and anomalies might be on a toggle?

Alarm clock - I'm still setting up my Minmus permanent base, Building a couple Space Hotels, and also looking to clean up some old and underpowered Communications satellites, I'm probably not going to warp 2 years or more away just to find a transfer window. Or to arrive someplace. I'll likely be doing all of my interplanetary stuff in sandbox later when I get bored.

Transfer planner - Yes. As science and facilities are up graded, the planner becomes more precise ( not perfect, just less bad ). A page or tab with this info is needed in console game. Also a notification pop-up for planned missions.

-As science is discovered and implemented, Things like; alarm clocks, transfer windows; biome mapps, anomalies, become more accurate.

-Perhaps add a couple of these science things to the tech tree at 1-5 upgradeable levels. 

Milestones - Need to be far more clear. Perhaps a pop-up notification "The Grand Pooba of Kerbin wants a taste of Minmus by the end of the year." Or at least some kind of notification that a milestone is in danger of being lost to somebody else. As far as I know I'm the only space program on Kerbin, So I'm assuming everything new I do is a first.

I'd love to have some in game methods of figuring out Delta-V. And transfer windows. ( add a mini game?)

Life support might be a really cool addition to Expert setting in Console game, but I'd like to see some of these other changes first.

PS4 controller needs to have a fine adjustment setting for setting some manoeuver nodes and for VAB/SPH builds. This is really a glaring problem, that I'm surprised exists.

I Love this game!

Cheers!

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Posted (edited)
On 5/6/2018 at 12:33 PM, GrouchyDevotee said:

I totally agree with this post. But I don't want to kill my machine by overworking it.

Biomes and Science Anomalies  - The console players don't have quick access to an open google tab, so I love the idea of having the biomes and science features marked on my map. Perhaps make Kerb-net access a requirement to have interesting or unexplored areas marked for players ( once they're discovered by scan? ). Science really needs to give players a heads up that something previously undiscovered has been found. "We haven't looked at the Far side of the moon before... take some science". Perhaps the zones and anomalies might be on a toggle?

Thanks for the console perspective, Grouchy. So many players take mods for granted forgetting that the console folks don't have this option. And the performance question is legit, (especially since I'd also love to see stock scatterer and visual enhancements (OOOohhh Pretty)). Plus now Im talking about adding overlays and new models for surface features everywhere.. so yeah Im no programmer but Im sure it will be important to keep things simple. Here's what I'd love to see:

1) Models for crystals, exposed geologic strata, geysers, fossils, and maybe primordial goo type signs of life. I honestly think half a dozen models or so could be re-skinned to fill each planet out. 

2) Surface features would come in two categories: Scattered features like crystals and geology, and Anomaly features like volcanoes and signs of life. Scattered features would be spread across certain biomes (possibly randomized) and Anomaly features would be fixed and mixed in with the current anomalies. 

3) Kerbnet would be required for biome and anomaly mapping and having a gravoli on board would increase the chance that anomalies are mapped. Once a survey scanner is placed in the correct orbit players could toggle through resource, biome and anomaly overlays in map mode. Biomes with scattered features would be highlighted in the anomaly overlay, but the features themselves would only show up using a narrow band scanner.

4) In addition to surface samples scientists could take core samples from scattered features. Anomaly features would have small biomes around them with larger science bonuses on all experiments performed there. 

This does add some complexity to the game, but like the Comnet system that complexity is optional and about gaining bonuses. Still, I think we could simplify other things to balance things out:

1) Add a Collect Science action group up next to the brakes and lights and a corresponding hotkey.

2) Make all data 100% recoverable to reduce diminishing returns and repetitive missions. If this were the case each result would require only a transmit/process value bar.

3) Make samples un-transmittable before processing and make all other data un-processable (transmit only). Then remove the reset requirement from goo canisters and make Materials Bays and Atmospheric analyzers produce samples rather than transmittable data. With a MPL or level 3 scientist on board these experiments could be collected and reset without EVA. (This might sound complicated but would cut clicking and EVA resets by half. Also works as a bit of a MPL nerf.)

4) Consolidate all science results in one window with the store, transmit or process buttons next to each line and repeat/worthless experiments ignored. They could be scrolled through for flavor text with Store All, Transmit All and Process All buttons at the bottom. 

6sia1LQ.jpg

The point being to streamline the collection process as much as possible so players don't feel like they're endlessly clicking through results. When "New science available" comes up you just hit "Collect Science", then store all, transmit all, and/or process all. Its 2-3 clicks instead of dozens per biome. 

Edited by Pthigrivi
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Regarding processing science results, I like the concept of being able to "process" any science result that doesn't normally give you 100% after transmission, into something that is 100% transmittable.  (At a 1:1 ratio, so you get the same total science from either recovering it, or processing and transmitting it).   

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These are some pretty nice suggestions :)

I would also like to get a possibility to influence the contracts showing up in mission control. Strategies to get more contracts of a kind are nice but it would be even better, if we can also exclude some vessels from contracts. I know, it is possible to decline as contract but why should i spend my hard earned reputation to decline an illogical contract like "adjust the orbit of 'ComSat Relay Alpha1'" or "Extent station 'Duna Base Delivery'". ComNet Relays are usually well placed by the player and as soon as a ship got space for 5 or more kerbals, the game suggest this is spacestation (even though it is a base which needs to be delivered or even a big tourists ship).

Would be nice to get "Extent station xyz" contracts only if there is a vessel marked as "Station" and probes marked as "Relay" shouldn't be considered when new contracts are created. It would be also more logical if an agency ask you to launch a probe and after some time, the same agency ask you to adjust the orbit of the probe you have launched ealier. There is absolutly no reason for an agency to adjust the orbit of an probe or relay, which is placed by the players choice.

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2 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

1) Models for crystals, exposed geologic strata, geysers, fossils, and maybe primordial goo type signs of life. I honestly think half a dozen models or so could be re-skinned to fill each planet out. 

2) Surface features would come in two categories: Scattered features like crystals and geology, and Anomaly features like volcanoes and signs of life. Scattered features would be spread across certain biomes (possibly randomized) and Anomaly features would be fixed and mixed in with the current anomalies. 

3) Kerbnet would be required for biome and anomaly mapping and having a gravoli on board would increase the chance that anomalies are mapped. Once a survey scanner is placed in the correct orbit players could toggle through resource, biome and anomaly overlays in map mode. Biomes with scattered features would be highlighted in the anomaly overlay, but the features themselves would only show up using a narrow band scanner.

4) In addition to surface samples scientists could take core samples from scattered features. Anomaly features would have small biomes around them with larger science bonuses on all experiments performed there. 

1) Add a Collect Science action group up next to the brakes and lights and a corresponding hotkey.

4) Consolidate all science results in one window with the store, transmit or process buttons next to each line. They could be scrolled through for flavor text with Store All, Transmit All and Process All buttons at the bottom. 

B2nG3TU.jpg

The point being to streamline the collection process as much as possible so players don't feel like they're endlessly clicking through results. When "New science available" comes up you just hit "Collect Science", then store all, transmit all, and/or process all. Its 2-3 clicks instead of dozens per biome. 

Console players would definitely benefit from some sort of Mech Jeb Expansion. Really just some more launch and landing data in a window to keep me from constantly bouncing between map and close-up views.

I would very much like to have a collect science tab. ( goo and science jr can stay the way they are.)

Looking forward to any KSP expansion pak that come towards consoles, but I personally couldn't care less about having the mission builder.

 

I'd love to see any kind of Console expansion pak.

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Posted (edited)

Well on PC, they have a window with that sort of info in the tutorials (KSP 1.4.3, not sure about earlier versions), so they should be able to do that, if they want to. 

Assuming the consoles have action groups, then you can use an action group to collect science.

Edited by AVaughan

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, AVaughan said:

Regarding processing science results, I like the concept of being able to "process" any science result that doesn't normally give you 100% after transmission, into something that is 100% transmittable.  (At a 1:1 ratio, so you get the same total science from either recovering it, or processing and transmitting it).   

I like this idea. I guess the question is are there still transmission losses from the lab itself without adequate dishes?
 

4 hours ago, AVaughan said:

Well on PC, they have a window with that sort of info in the tutorials (KSP 1.4.3, not sure about earlier versions), so they should be able to do that, if they want to. 

Assuming the consoles have action groups, then you can use an action group to collect science.

I generally put all my experiments on one control group and an experiment storage container on another so with 2 keystrokes I can save everything. This still means I have to climb out and reset the goo and materials bay, but certainly a big improvement since the pre-1.2 days. I guess my thinking is that experiments should be thought of more like lights or landing gear, hotkeyed together automatically rather than requiring a player to manually jury rig them with action groups. 

Edited by Pthigrivi

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I agree with you that "fog of science" would be great. So would better strategies. The tech tree is fine how it is though. Players can unlock aviation and unmanned nodes fairly early on.

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I'm always shocked when I hear someone say the tech tree is fine.  Every time.  Without fail.

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I like a lot of these ideas, especially the science stuff. In particular, I like the fog of war coupled with specific (and randomized!) places to land and visit, which encourages both precision landing and rovers. I also like the idea of never having to click to do science again. That's what the Kerbals are for.

I don't think there should ever be a porkchop plot in the game. Instead, there should be a place to plan transfers*. You would plan transfers by creating a "Transfer Node" on a planet or moon's orbit. This Transfer Node would basically be a Maneuver node that you place on the world's orbit. You can then plan your own transfer to another world very simply. Then, once you get a ship into orbit of the source world, you can "copy the transfer node" to that ship and it will create a maneuver node to get that transfer, at least as close as can be expected (shifting time to achieve perfect escape from the world, and allowing for the fact that SOIs are not pinpoints like Maneuver Nodes are). This, along with a stock alarm clock, would be enough to allow players to plan their own transfers AND learn how transfers actually work, without puking a multicolored graph in their face.

* The place to plan transfers could be a new building, or part of the Tracking Station, or maybe even there could be a way to do it in Map Mode. Or ditch strategies altogether, move contracts to the Admin building, and use Mission Control as a place to - you know - control your missions.

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3 hours ago, klgraham1013 said:

I'm always shocked when I hear someone say the tech tree is fine.  Every time.  Without fail.

I see you haven't played career mode much. Usually aviation and unmanned tech is unlocked within the first week.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, The Dunatian said:

I see you haven't played career mode much. Usually aviation and unmanned tech is unlocked within the first week.

True, but many players would prefer to start out in a more historical feeling progression and I don't begrudge them that, which is why I've made that strategic split happen right at the base of the tech tree. For players who prefer to follow the crewed flight path they can just continue up that ladder. Of course to do that properly I'd have to sift all the parts into more appropriate nodes and think more carefully about the path-routes, the above is really just a conceptual diagram. 

Even if you were to stick with the current framework there are some major areas I think could be improved upon. Solar panels, batteries, ladders, lights and rover wheels should really come at least a level earlier across the board. Many of the structural pieces also seem to come too late. Other things like radiators, IRSU and the LV-N could be held further back. All Im saying is the whole thing could use at least a second look and probably a systematic restructure. 

 

7 hours ago, 5thHorseman said:

I like a lot of these ideas, especially the science stuff. In particular, I like the fog of war coupled with specific (and randomized!) places to land and visit, which encourages both precision landing and rovers. I also like the idea of never having to click to do science again. That's what the Kerbals are for.

Yeah having a reason for precision landing and rovers is the big one, plus having some visual feedback that says "hey I found something!". The trouble now is all of the biomes are worth the same so even on a 2nd or 4th landing on a given body there's really no experiential or strategic reason to land anywhere specific. With just a little bit of randomization and having to weigh between high IRSU resources and high science payouts you could make a real game of site selection. When it comes time to collect I think you still need some level of interface and an option to manage what you're collecting but if we could get all those results into 1 clean window with a hotkey the process would be about as unobtrusive as it can be. 

Edited by Pthigrivi

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This is what we need for 1.5.  Very little actual stuff has changed since 1.1

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, The Dunatian said:

I see you haven't played career mode much. Usually aviation and unmanned tech is unlocked within the first week.

Don't get hung up on those two examples.  They're the least of your worries.

Bear in mind: There are 8 tiers on the tech tree.  Divided into three phases; tiers 1-2 could be considered early game, 3-5 mid game, and 6-8 late game.  Tier 8 has only 4 nodes.  Thus, late game is really only tiers 6 and 7.

Well, maybe we should get the big two out of the way first.  Planes are tier 3.  Probes are Tier 4 if you consider solar panels a basic necessity of satellites.  Okay, now that we've got that out of the way.

Light bulbs are tier 4.  Ladders are tier 5.  (sort of important for getting out of your ship and planting flags)   Structural parts really start showing up at tier 5 and a completely separate line in tier 6.  Kerbal ready rover wheels show up in tier 6.  (long after you've already landed kerbals on several planets)  You can pick up a 1.25 to 2.5m adapter and a 2.5m decoupler in tier 3 before you get 2.5m tanks in tier 4.  That's just at a quick glance.

Don't even get me started on the cost inconsistencies or arbitrary lock out of building upgrades.

Edited by klgraham1013
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1 hour ago, klgraham1013 said:

Don't get hung up on those two examples.  They're the least of your worries.

Bear in mind: There are 8 tiers on the tech tree.  Divided into three phases; tiers 1-2 could be considered early game, 3-5 mid game, and 6-8 late game.  Tier 8 has only 4 nodes.  Thus, late game is really only tiers 6 and 7.

Well, maybe we should get the big two out of the way first.  Planes are tier 3.  Probes are Tier 4 if you consider solar panels a basic necessity of satellites.  Okay, now that we've got that out of the way.

Light bulbs are tier 4.  Ladders are tier 5.  (sort of important for getting out of your ship and planting flags)   Structural parts really start showing up at tier 5 and a completely separate line in tier 6.  Kerbal ready rover wheels show up in tier 6.  (long after you've already landed kerbals on several planets)  You can pick up a 1.25 to 2.5m adapter and a 2.5m decoupler in tier 3 before you get 2.5m tanks in tier 4.  That's just at a quick glance.

Don't even get me started on the cost inconsistencies or arbitrary lock out of building upgrades.

Big deal. This is really splitting hairs. Everything up to tier 4 is unlocked very quickly, as all cavemen can testify to. I've never had any problems because of the tech tree order.

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About the life support part ...

Since 0.25 i have played all flavours of lifesupport mods that were available and after a long break i started playing KSP again recently and tried Kerbalism. It has just a couple of parts, 'it all makes sense' (as in, water, food, oxygen etc.) , radiation belts, it even has some simple scripting in it, like turn on lights when in shadow or start fuell cell when energy low. It would fit pretty good into stock.

 

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2 hours ago, klgraham1013 said:

Ladders are tier 5.  (sort of important for getting out of your ship and planting flags)

But only on Eve, Kerbin, Tylo, and Laythe. And on all but Eve, you can usually jetpack jump so long as your lander's squat enough. And you're not landing on Eve (or Tylo or Laythe) with tier 4 parts or less you're good enough to figure out how to get by without the ladder :D

And regarding prices I've never, ever, ever shied away from putting any part on any ship because of price. Maybe on all-settings-hardest or something but even then, I'd just buy the part and make sure I could recover it.

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