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23 hours ago, Bill Phil said:

A number of forum-goers made it clear that they believe the game is far from finished.

I probably agree. 

Even so, 2.0 is a bit of a stretch.

I believe the game engine has reached its limits and is now limiting any real further development. Every time they add new features with the latest patch, new bugs emerge that need fixing.

The point is that KSP has reached well beyond what was the initial objective. It was a casual simple but science-correct space travel simulator, and through subsequent updates it has become so much more.

I believe a clean slate project would help a lot. Let the developers team re-define the game objectives, and create something from scratch that is optimized for that.

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1 hour ago, Dicapitano said:

I believe the game engine has reached its limits and is now limiting any real further development. Every time they add new features with the latest patch, new bugs emerge that need fixing.

The point is that KSP has reached well beyond what was the initial objective. It was a casual simple but science-correct space travel simulator, and through subsequent updates it has become so much more.

I believe a clean slate project would help a lot. Let the developers team re-define the game objectives, and create something from scratch that is optimized for that.

Yeah. A dedicated engine would likely be optimal for a game like this. Most games don't have nearly so much physics going on. But a dedicated engine increases complexity.

Of course a re-engine might help optimize things. But there are costs to doing that, and the benefits would likely be minimal.

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2 minutes ago, Bill Phil said:

Yeah. A dedicated engine would likely be optimal for a game like this. Most games don't have nearly so much physics going on. But a dedicated engine increases complexity.

Of course a re-engine might help optimize things. But there are costs to doing that, and the benefits would likely be minimal.

Take Two interactive is a much bigger developer with deeper pockets than the original team. They do have the capacity to add the necessary resources to make a great game concept even better.

Remember that initially KSP was developed by a very small team with very few resources. They did a great job but still they had to work with what they had.

One basic limitation of the same is that it uses "Patched conic approximation" for the physics engine, which excludes things like Lagrange points, perturbations, Lissajous orbits, halo orbits or tidal forces. This is something that can only be done with a dedicated engine which probably has to be written from scratch. Felipe Falanghe of Squad developed the game on a string back in 2011, and he had to choose the most cost effective option to get this done quickly, not the best one.

My view is that once you have a solid and optimized engine, the further development opportunities become endless. I remember that the European Space Agency was at one point hiring interns to work spacecraft concepts based on KSP... if you have a solid core physics engine this could really become both a great game but also a benchmark for education.

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On 7/3/2018 at 12:36 PM, mattinoz said:

SimCity looked pretty unfinished compared the next versions as well.

For every rusted on player on the forums (like me) there are another 2 who'd give KSP a second chance. Look at Civilisation and other games that basically reworked the same game over and over with better graphics.

It would be good to see other Kerbal games as well but resourcing is going to be the problem.

I fully agree with the parallel with Civilization. Civilization 1 was a great game which did unbelievable things when it came out in 1991. People where mind blown by the depth of the game and the fact that each new game could be completely different from the previous one... still, if you look at that game today... it's 2D, with ridiculous graphics and very limited options. New games have maintained the basic concept unchanged and added tons of new features, options and better graphics.


If you look at KSP, you could think about something similar:

  1. Create a new, expanded, reliable physics engine that puts new solid foundations to the whole game.
  2. Add additional features to the basic game that add depth but don't change the core concept:
    • Life support package: this is the biggest limitation I currently see. As much as I like the simplicity of the current game... manned exploration is at least 50% about how to sustain the crew for long duration missions... Something simple like USI-LS would be enough. One could always switch this off in the game options.
    • Interactive spacecraft cabins: the ability to move inside the spacecraft and interact with the cabin (those IVAs are amazing... but such a pity you cannot actually move around and see more).
    • Environmental effects: clouds on planets with atmosphere, geysers on icy moons, comets with icy trails, dust storms on Duna. One might even think about environmental elements affecting spacecraft flights... launch with wind or in a storm, and see your spacecraft rocked around... 
    • A richer Kerbin environment: Kerbin should have that special feeling of "home planet"...  Some very simple cities, roads, procedurally generated simple road traffic, air traffic, sea traffic. Procedurally generated wildlife. More trees, more Easter eggs like the pyramids, maybe shipwrecks to explore... 
    • Planets that are more interesting to visit: planets with clouds, winds, geysers, canyons. Add some simple wildlife, sea creatures on Laythe... a live Kraken somewhere... Magic boulders, arches. Fossil extinct life on Duna... to go and research. 
    • Permanent bases on planets: end-game possibility for building more permanent bases on planets (adds meaning to the end game and adds another level of complexity). I would avoid colonization as this would be way much beyond the scope of the game. Just add bases where one can do research, refuel, base back-up crews indefinitely, run long-term exploration projects.
    • Expanded Air, Ground, Submarine play: the terrain, the airspace, the seas and lakes are all already there... why not make use of them. Add side missions also to these elements. Let Kerbonauts explore the depths of Kerbin and other planets. Add undersea canyons, shipwrecks, easter eggs to the bottom of the seas...
    • Auto pilot features: Something like Mechjeb becomes necessary once you add expanded features. Maybe just make it very difficult to research.
    • KIS/KAS like features as standard: absolute must to make EVAs more meaningful. As it is, not much to do when you space walk in orbit or you walk on planets...
    • Kerbonauts Merits: something like final frontier as standard... it's an absolute must. Tracking the history of your achievements, or disasters... part of the fun.
    • OPM (or some versions of it): additional planets like OPM are also a must. The challenge of sending manned missions to distant planets is adds another level of complexity. Also, comets and a Planet X that can be discovered only late in the game...  
    • Other mods that should be standard in the base game:  Near future Technologies, Planetary Bases Inc, Community Tech Tree, Space Y, Scan Sat. These are all elements that add richness to the game.
  3. Work on additional DLCs to be sold separately:
    • Real Solar System with real-life spacecrafts
    • Educational-based version of the game
    • Interstellar quest
    • Colonization

 

I think point 1 and 2 would take the current great game to a whole new level. Basic concept would remain the same, and one could always adjust for complexity with "opt out options" (for example decide not to activate life support...). 

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2 hours ago, Dicapitano said:

Take Two interactive is a much bigger developer with deeper pockets than the original team. They do have the capacity to add the necessary resources to make a great game concept even better.

Remember that initially KSP was developed by a very small team with very few resources. They did a great job but still they had to work with what they had.

One basic limitation of the same is that it uses "Patched conic approximation" for the physics engine, which excludes things like Lagrange points, perturbations, Lissajous orbits, halo orbits or tidal forces. This is something that can only be done with a dedicated engine which probably has to be written from scratch. Felipe Falanghe of Squad developed the game on a string back in 2011, and he had to choose the most cost effective option to get this done quickly, not the best one.

My view is that once you have a solid and optimized engine, the further development opportunities become endless. I remember that the European Space Agency was at one point hiring interns to work spacecraft concepts based on KSP... if you have a solid core physics engine this could really become both a great game but also a benchmark for education.

While this build-an-engine-from-scratch approach would most likely be ideal for a game such as KSP, I don't think we'll see it happen. It would take a lot of time, a lot of money, and a team that's capable of creating such a thing.

Could Take-Two make those things happen? I'm fairly certain they can afford it. But is there enough profit in it to warrant it? That seems to me to be a lot less likely.

Even if we were to entertain such ambitious hopes, we'd be looking at a thing that likely wouldn't be available for 4 to 5 years. Even if they've started already, we probably wouldn't see anything until 2022 at the earliest, and even then it might just be early looks at something still in a pre-release state.

As much as I'd like to see something like this, I just don't see Take-Two taking one chance on such a niche product that would require the amount of resources as I'd love to see devoted to something like KSP. I dont even think it's possible even if they can figure out a way to incorporate recurring purchases into this new, rebuilt-from-the-ground-up KSP... 

 

...One finger curls on the monkey's paw...

KSP 2.0! Now with color-coded loot drops for parts, microtransactions, and DLC skins! Only $60! Add the season pass* for only $20! Preorder your copy and get these fantastic pre-order only part skins!

Buy the SOLAR SYSTEM EDITION to get the season pass* included for only $75!

Or the GALAXY EDITION with the season pass*, a set of unique GALAXY EDITION skins, a copy of the soundtrack, and 4 digital wallpapers for only $90!

Or, for the little Kerbalnaut who just has to have it all, the UNIVERSE EDITION! It includes the season pass*, a set of unique skins, soundtrack, wallpapers, an "I bought the most expensive version of KSP 2.0" t-shirt (One Size Fits All), a disapppinting Kerbal figurine, and you can download the game a week before everyone else for just $150!

*Season pass content and release date to be announced at a later date.

 

Honestly, I'd almost be okay with it going that way. At least then Take-Two's purchase of KSP would start to make some sense. As it stands I just don't see how they plan to make money off of one niche title that came out of early access and had its big debut/fanfare about 2 years prior to their purchase of it.

Edited by Mako
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21 hours ago, Majorjim! said:

There will be no KSP 2. Ever. I would bet real money on this. 

While I would not bet on it, I tend to agree to your prognosis. This genre being very much a niche, I doubt T2 would see a good enough business case to start a multiple year development process from scratch.

11 hours ago, Dicapitano said:

I believe the game engine has reached its limits and is now limiting any real further development. Every time they add new features with the latest patch, new bugs emerge that need fixing.

The point is that KSP has reached well beyond what was the initial objective. It was a casual simple but science-correct space travel simulator, and through subsequent updates it has become so much more.

I believe a clean slate project would help a lot. Let the developers team re-define the game objectives, and create something from scratch that is optimized for that.

Truer words have never been spoken...

On 7/3/2018 at 5:29 AM, Bill Phil said:

A number of forum-goers made it clear that they believe the game is far from finished.

I probably agree. 

Even so, 2.0 is a bit of a stretch.

And it will never be finished, since it cannot be finished, because the expectations of the forum-goers and the objectives of T2/Squad will probably never be aligned.

7 hours ago, Mako said:

While this build-an-engine-from-scratch approach would most likely be ideal for a game such as KSP, I don't think we'll see it happen. It would take a lot of time, a lot of money, and a team that's capable of creating such a thing.

Could Take-Two make those things happen? I'm fairly certain they can afford it. But is there enough profit in it to warrant it? That seems to me to be a lot less likely.

Even if we were to entertain such ambitious hopes, we'd be looking at a thing that likely wouldn't be available for 4 to 5 years. Even if they've started already, we probably wouldn't see anything until 2022 at the earliest, and even then it might just be early looks at something still in a pre-release state.

As much as I'd like to see something like this, I just don't see Take-Two taking one chance on such a niche product that would require the amount of resources as I'd love to see devoted to something like KSP. I dont even think it's possible even if they can figure out a way to incorporate recurring purchases into this new, rebuilt-from-the-ground-up KSP... 

 

...One finger curls on the monkey's paw...

KSP 2.0! Now with color-coded loot drops for parts, microtransactions, and DLC skins! Only $60! Add the season pass* for only $20! Preorder your copy and get these fantastic pre-order only part skins!

Buy the SOLAR SYSTEM EDITION to get the season pass* included for only $75!

Or the GALAXY EDITION with the season pass*, a set of unique GALAXY EDITION skins, a copy of the soundtrack, and 4 digital wallpapers for only $90!

Or, for the little Kerbalnaut who just has to have it all, the UNIVERSE EDITION! It includes the season pass*, a set of unique skins, soundtrack, wallpapers, an "I bought the most expensive version of KSP 2.0" t-shirt (One Size Fits All), a disapppinting Kerbal figurine, and you can download the game a week before everyone else for just $150!

*Season pass content and release date to be announced at a later date.

 

Honestly, I'd almost be okay with it going that way. At least then Take-Two's purchase of KSP would start to make some sense. As it stands I just don't see how they plan to make money off of one niche title that came out of early access and had its big debut/fanfare about 2 years prior to their purchase of it.

The truth is that IMHO classic simulation games the likes of Flight Simulator and even the somewhat more light-hearted variety like KSP are a dying species. Business developers want to generate a long term money stream, that is why I also see the chance that a KSP 2, should it come indeed, would have some kind of after-market monetization, be it loot boxes (doesn't make so much sense) or DLC, livery packs, content packs, you name it...

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9 hours ago, Dicapitano said:

Life support package: this is the biggest limitation I currently see. As much as I like the simplicity of the current game... manned exploration is at least 50% about how to sustain the crew for long duration missions... Something simple like USI-LS would be enough. One could always switch this off in the game options

First time I've heard USI-LS called "simple"

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12 hours ago, Dicapitano said:

Take Two interactive is a much bigger developer with deeper pockets than the original team. They do have the capacity to add the necessary resources to make a great game concept even better.

Remember that initially KSP was developed by a very small team with very few resources. They did a great job but still they had to work with what they had.

One basic limitation of the same is that it uses "Patched conic approximation" for the physics engine, which excludes things like Lagrange points, perturbations, Lissajous orbits, halo orbits or tidal forces. This is something that can only be done with a dedicated engine which probably has to be written from scratch. Felipe Falanghe of Squad developed the game on a string back in 2011, and he had to choose the most cost effective option to get this done quickly, not the best one.

My view is that once you have a solid and optimized engine, the further development opportunities become endless. I remember that the European Space Agency was at one point hiring interns to work spacecraft concepts based on KSP... if you have a solid core physics engine this could really become both a great game but also a benchmark for education.

Large corporations do cost-benefit analyses. Cost of KSP 2.0 will be high. And tge benefit low.

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1 hour ago, linuxgurugamer said:

First time I've heard USI-LS called "simple"

What's complicated about USI-LS?  Are you thinking of USI-MKS?

1 hour ago, Bill Phil said:

Large corporations do cost-benefit analyses. Cost of KSP 2.0 will be high. And tge benefit low.

If this were the case, sequels would never be made.  I, for one, think there could be great profits in a KSP2. (Notice I didn't say 2.0.)

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28 minutes ago, klgraham1013 said:

If this were the case, sequels would never be made.  I, for one, think there could be great profits in a KSP2. (Notice I didn't say 2.0.)

Some games never get sequels. Why? Because the first game wasn't successful enough to warrant one. As is the case for KSP, as much as we'd like that not to be the case. Sure, KSP was successful a while back, but the long term development of KSP means the costs are pretty high.

Sequels are made when they are warranted, and when they will generate profits. KSP2 likely won't, if a new engine is used to make it. If it's built on Unity, it may work out, but again, the benefits will be minimal. KSP doesn't warrant a sequel for many reasons. For one, there's no story. Sequels can serve to continue a story. There is no story to continue. Another thing is that KSP is in continuous development. Many games are developed, have some expansions/DLC developed, and then the developers move on to another game. Eventually the company gets around to making a sequel to change up the formula or do something else like improve the gameplay or squeeze out more cash from the franchise. A game in continuous development is a different dynamic, and unless KSP is ever finished (officially, that is), then it will never get a sequel. 

Not to say I wouldn't like to see a KSP2, but the likelihood of it happening is so small that we'll never get it.

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I think the most compelling reason for KSP2 is so Squad/T2 can use a new engine. Unigine would actually be perfect for a game like KSP, being able to simulate at very large scales. Graphics, physics (N-body), and gameplay overhauls would become an option, including multiplayer. And with multiplayer...

Coming soon...Kerbal Space Program: Battle Royale Mode

EDIT: Related Links

Unigine Wikipedia page: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unigine

Official Website: http://unigine.com

 

Edited by 0something0
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14 hours ago, 0something0 said:

I think the most compelling reason for KSP2 is so Squad/T2 can use a new engine. Unigine [snip]

(link on the quoted text is mine)

Agreed. There're two main sources of recurrent problems on KSP nowadays, and more than half would go away directly or indirectly by ditching Unity.

Such move would be traumatic, as Unity's leaked abstractions is everywhere on the Mods, and so a huge effort would be needed to "pair" KSP2 to 1. But, frankly? Once the incoming to finance the stunt is secured (and I fear this is the worst problem to solve now), it would probably expand the user base enough to pay itself: there's a very limited amount of users willing to cope with a eternal beta status while gaming (not to mention the Console users, a very large and lucrative niche that demands a very high level of Q/A, as they are locked inside a walled garden and can't take the preventive (and corrective) measures we are used to on PC Gaming).

Edited by Lisias
autocorrection had bite me.
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KSP as a lighthearted space game that does do somewhat serious orbital mechanics will always be a niche game, and although it might be not that hot selling as peak moment, I do think that there will always be a demand for it and keeps attracting new players.
Of course you have Orbiter as a full on simulator, but that is pretty hard core.
KSP keeps getting attention and attraction if you look at replies in lighthearted space related articles, and KSP does get referred to a lot. It got my attention and I am pretty certain that people who are, or get interested in anything space related are kept being drawn to KSP.

I do think Take2 did recognize this and are in it for the long term, like they have with the full GTA series. Either by nurturing KSP or like some others have said, taking it to a new engine with a KSP2. If SQUAD would be involved in a KSP2 would be the big question mark, but it could very well be that another developer could get a change at a go for it. If looking long term, I'm certain a KSP2 will sell, and would keep selling.

What I do think is a big certainty, is that Take2 is going to do something with the Kerbal intellectual property, I'm not going to give numbers here, but if you look at what Take2 actually paid for the IP, and what they've put on their  balance as 'developed games property'*, they just have to, or even need to do something with it besides what we know now as Kerbal Space Program.

Like others have said, I can see a long time future in a newly, from the ground built up KSP2 with a new, more future proof updated engine. I'd buy it, wouldn't you?

I either think it will happen one day, or we'll see a Kerbal flight simulator, sail/boat/submarine simulator or car simulator.  But there is deep pockets and time I guess, KSP does not feel that old yet, and one off its main selling points is that any computer out today, how low-spec it is even without a graphics card, enables you to play KSP. So if one does get interested in to space and orbital mechanics, everybody with a potato can join the club without needing an initial investment in a 'game playing specification' PC or laptop.
 

*numbers are public information, and can be found in Take2's annual financial reports if you do a little search for it.

 

PS: @Take2 and @SQUAD, what is the hold up on Kerbal franchise merchandise? I want pluchies, figurines, posters, car bumper stickers, T-shirts, baby clothes and mugs!

Edited by LoSBoL
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3 hours ago, LoSBoL said:

Like others have said, I can see a long time future in a newly, from the ground built up KSP2 with a new, more future proof updated engine. I'd buy it, wouldn't you?

I either think it will happen one day, or we'll see a Kerbal flight simulator, sail/boat/submarine simulator or car simulator.  But there is deep pockets and time I guess, KSP does not feel that old yet, and one off its main selling points is that any computer out today, how low-spec it is even without a graphics card, enables you to play KSP. So if one does get interested in to space and orbital mechanics, everybody with a potato can join the club without needing an initial investment in a 'game playing specification' PC or laptop.

I would possibly buy every one of those titles maybe a few times if i gift some copies to young members of the family.

Seems like a great plan to make Kerbals a long term money earner. Build another less physics intensive game involving Kerbals and a build-your-own creation. Build it from the ground up on a new engine. Get the modders in to play based the new market. Then KSP 2.0 becomes a project that only needs to expand that with the orbitial physics and converting the assets.  And as I said take my money a couple of times or more on the way.

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I'd back a KSP2 on one condition: No Unity3D.
I'd settle for a KSP 1.x free of unity-related recurring bugs and general jankiness.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 7/3/2018 at 12:12 PM, Majorjim! said:

There will be no KSP 2. Ever. I would bet real money on this. 

I would like to see "Kerbal Construction Program" and if they do I want a royalty check for the idea.....:D

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This discussion of the game's development should have been moved to Development Discussions a while ago, but I overlooked it. However, it's done now. 

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On 7/3/2018 at 7:12 PM, Majorjim! said:

There will be no KSP 2. Ever. I would bet real money on this. 

^^I agree. I like the ideas suggested in the OP, but chances are slim it will actually happend. I doubt squad will make KSP 2. I do think that sometime in the future, someone will make some sort of improved spaceflight simulator, but not squad.

We will have to see...

Edited by NSEP
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I do not want to pay again! Why 2.0 when we can just get it in a DLC and keep our saves and not have to pay again and then we still get updates. Honestly this is like SW battlefront HOW MANY DO WE NEED? I would pay for this stuff but I'm not going to fly around and re-establish All my space stations. We spend a ton of time doing these stuff why do it again for things that can be in DLC. Plus the new features are DLC but the optimazation always happens either way. 

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36 minutes ago, Cheif Operations Director said:

I do not want to pay again! Why 2.0 [snip]

It's just a number. :) Given the huge amount of changes and differences from the 1.3.x series, one can consider that perhaps the 1.4.x series should be that 2.0 the OP talks about.

Squad needs continuous funding, otherwise they will not get paid - what would defeats the very reason they are working on KSP. Being that by a new KSP version, or by a myriad of new DLCs, you will pay for it again and again somehow or KSP will be a dead project.

That said, what the OP means is that, perhaps, they should handle KSP as a Project - a iteration with a starting milestone, an end milestone, and some goals to be reached between them. And then sell this product for some time before restarting the process again.

As you can't have the cake and eat it too, there're advantages and disadvantages on this approach. The disadvantages you already know, but the advantage would be a least about a year without having your savegames being broken by updates.

Honestly, I think that a middle ground can be reached. But this is a discussion for another thread - I just wanna to explain the rationale used by the OP. He have some good points (as well you, just to clarify).

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On 7/4/2018 at 4:12 PM, Bill Phil said:

Some games never get sequels. Why? Because the first game wasn't successful enough to warrant one. As is the case for KSP, as much as we'd like that not to be the case. Sure, KSP was successful a while back, but the long term development of KSP means the costs are pretty high.

Sequels are made when they are warranted, and when they will generate profits. KSP2 likely won't, if a new engine is used to make it. If it's built on Unity, it may work out, but again, the benefits will be minimal. KSP doesn't warrant a sequel for many reasons. For one, there's no story. Sequels can serve to continue a story. There is no story to continue. Another thing is that KSP is in continuous development. Many games are developed, have some expansions/DLC developed, and then the developers move on to another game. Eventually the company gets around to making a sequel to change up the formula or do something else like improve the gameplay or squeeze out more cash from the franchise. A game in continuous development is a different dynamic, and unless KSP is ever finished (officially, that is), then it will never get a sequel. 

Not to say I wouldn't like to see a KSP2, but the likelihood of it happening is so small that we'll never get it.

Plenty of games have no story and get sequels: civilization and sim city come to mind. And I don't think a hypothetical KSP 2 should be in continuos development. TBH, I don't even understand the business logic of it. I'm not rebuying KSP 1 again, so while I appreciate the continuos develop (and resent the beta status of versions after 1.0), they aren't getting more money from me. Make KSP 2 with the kind of improvements the OP mentioned (and modern graphics) and I'll buy it. That's money coming in. As it stands right now, continuos development seems to be paid by a trickle of sales - I doubt KSP is selling like it did when it left early access or that the DLC sales are keeping up at the same rate.

On 7/4/2018 at 7:08 PM, LoSBoL said:

I either think it will happen one day, or we'll see a Kerbal flight simulator, sail/boat/submarine simulator or car simulator.  But there is deep pockets and time I guess, KSP does not feel that old yet, and one off its main selling points is that any computer out today, how low-spec it is even without a graphics card, enables you to play KSP. So if one does get interested in to space and orbital mechanics, everybody with a potato can join the club without needing an initial investment in a 'game playing specification' PC or laptop.

What potato computer? Sure, you don't need a powerful graphic card, but keep throwing parts at it and it becomes Kerbal Slideshow Program unless you have an overclocked i7. And I'm playing it with an overclocked i5-3570k, which is hardly potato. One of the reasons is the engine and the design philosophy: if I have a large ship in orbit, with engines off, or a large base, KSP still runs physics calculation for every part, even if nothing has changed in the vessel. That's incredibly inefficient. And even in space, the simulation could probably run a check of the effects of the common maneuvers (ie, would fire the engines break the ship or will it hold steady? If it holds, don't run any calculation while the engines are running). To correct these things, we need KSP 2 instead of keep patching up KSP 1

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Though I think KSP1 lacks significantly and needs a lot more content before it's abandoned for a sequel-

The second T2 entered the picture, in my mind KSP's fate was sealed. It makes little sense to me for a company to buy a developer, and rely on trailing sales of an existing games and it's DLCs. Though they will keep working on KSP for a short while I can whole heatedly say that KSP2 will be a thing by or before, 2020.

Especially knowing that KSP internally is a mess of updates and bug fixes over the years. Eventually it becomes easier and cheaper to just start clean instead of fixing the existing problem that is KSP1.

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The only thing that would warrant a 2.0, for me at least, is when this game is truly "finished" or when finishing is impossible due to insurmountable limitations in the games engine. 

For one thing, I think KSP needs to see some stock reasons to have a space station, and some stock reasons to go exploring on planets. The comm-net in 1.2 was a big step forward as it made the game more in-depth. We need to see more of that before 2.0 would be reasonable. 

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