jevry

explorables and improved planets

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So in the new dev diary on the steam page they were talking about textures. In the comments I was reminded of the planets.

The planets in ksp are just a tad dull. And besides the atmospheres, distance, and gravity challenges they have only a few sights to offer.

Next to this there is the issue of them being HUGE (duh :P) making rovers kind of boring as well since getting anywhere takes longer than doing a maneuver with ion engines divided over multiple passes of the periapsis. especially on low gravity planets (or if the rover is a bit wibbly wobbly... ... ... stuff) this is a problem as it is extra dangerous to let the rover drive on cruise control and do something else in the meantime.

So when the devs get around to looking at the planets I would suggest (next to improved textures and adding shinyness... clouds) more landsights and a way to travel accros the surface faster, a sort of fast travel, maybe even discovering waypoints to give fixed locations to travel to. so for example the mohole, entrances to grand ravines, easter egg locations. maybe costum  locations as a means to get back to bases.

Now yes there is a mod for fast travel (because when is there not a mod for your desires?), but such a feature makes gameplay on planets so much more bearable it is something I feel should be included in the base game.

 

other nice things to add could be more texts describing locations and what the kerbal thinks of the sightings , and collectibles when you surface sample at interesting locations which you can view in a rock trophy room. because people like to look at rocks right?

a bit of a side story of the findings as i just described could be interesting.

 

 

also please add that cryovolcanic activity to eeloo because that sounds really freaking awesome and probably looks really cool.

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Totally agree. This is actually my biggest hope for the game, that the surfaces of the planets could be more involved in the process of science and exploration. I think its a big ask, but not an ungodly one requiring hundreds or thousands of individual placed models. Honestly a dozen or so new models reskinned to suit the planet they're on could do it. Some, like the existing anomalies, could be fixed components of the terrain, but others could be composed of a few different models scattered randomly across the terrain in some biomes.  I'd also prefer if the next layer had a more 'sciencey' feel--geologic formations, volcanoes, geysers, perhaps even fossils and signs of life. The most important thing though is that they are easily and clearly mappable from orbit. As you said the worlds are so vast its almost impossible to find anything accidentally. I like how Kerbnet has a chance of showing a little "?", but its not as if Im just circling the planet watching kerbnet waiting for one to pop up. Id rather there were a checkbox to automatically place waypoints on the big anomalies if they passed within range (on some percentage). I'd also love to be be able to see biomes in map mode like you can with SCANsat. The point of all this would be to give players the tools to find cool things and encourage them to precision land and bring rovers. 


X4HmvGh.jpg

Edited by Pthigrivi

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I know it is off topic, but remember the thread we had going a couple years ago about fixing science to the heliopause and interstellar space should you reach that far, that would have been a much easier add and nothing ever came of it, despite seemingly a lot of agreement and support.  I would love your geology/search for life biome layer though.

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I think we need more stuff like the Tylo cave....

I aswell think that stuff like anomalies would be cool to have and they would give a bit more exploration to places we already drained them from science.And they could give some tools more use like using the drill to take Deep Surface samples.

And overall add more landmarks to the planet generation like these....

jrCoT3G.png

Rock formations WITH COLLITIONS could add a bit more challenge to driving on the Surface of planets(That way we dont just add a weight to the w key and start browsing the fórums.

And maybe some cool valleys around duna with remains of other space center`s space craft..that would be cool

 

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On 11/27/2018 at 3:20 AM, jevry said:

(next to improved textures and adding shinyness... clouds)

I'll stop you right there. Clouds probably won't be implemented in the game due to the performance issues they would create. If you want clouds, you can download a variety of mods (EVE is the most popular one). We don't really want clouds in stock KSP, much like KSP multiplayer. Mods can provide both of those things.

Also sorry if I'm a bit of a nitpicker right now

: )

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3 hours ago, KerbolExplorer said:

Rock formations WITH COLLITIONS could add a bit more challenge to driving on the Surface of planets(That way we dont just add a weight to the w key and start browsing the fórums.

My understanding is that adding colliders to the existing ground scatter would create big performance issues, but I think if there were a special class of anomalous ground scatter that came with colliders and  science bonuses and occured only every couple of kilometers at most it wouldn't be such a burden (7 or so within physics range).

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Scatter collisions are implemented in Stock Visual Terrain iirc. (I learned that hard way (trying not to make a pun about getting between a rock and a hard place) when I was traveling around the Mun and I lost my rover due to unsuspicious rock that flipped it over after a solid hit)

Yes, that hits the performance hard but it could be that high resolution textures - main feature of said mod - are the issue here.

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On 11/27/2018 at 9:20 PM, GarrisonChisholm said:

I know it is off topic, but remember the thread we had going a couple years ago about fixing science to the heliopause and interstellar space should you reach that far, that would have been a much easier add and nothing ever came of it, despite seemingly a lot of agreement and support.  I would love your geology/search for life biome layer though.

oh i dunno man, you know how weird ksp gets when you get too far from sol, with seemingly rectangular orbits and all, besides, an extra science biome in outer space isn't exactly interesting and will only add joy for the duration to get there. not even that actually since you'l be just browsing the forums as you wait for your craft to get there on 100000 speed and finally get that science after like an hour of waiting.

which is basically the same problem as the rovers with not having to put a weight on the w key as the only difference.

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On 11/28/2018 at 8:08 PM, The Aziz said:

Scatter collisions are implemented in Stock Visual Terrain [...]
that hits the performance hard but it could be that high resolution textures

Collisions with scattered rocks and trees are actually implemented by Kopernicus; SVT is just one of the configuration+textures packs that enables the colliders.  When Kopernicus is installed, we can enable colliders on rocks and trees, but not grass using this text (reference) in a cfg file :

Spoiler

@Kopernicus:AFTER[Kopernicus] { // or after whatever mod you use that uses Kopernicus, e.g. AFTER[Snarkiverse]
 @Body[Eve]    { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Gilly]  { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Kerbin] { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters {
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } //maple
	Scatter { %Components { } } //grass
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } //boulder
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } //pine
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } //cactus
} } } } }
 @Body[Minmus] { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Mun]    { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Duna]   { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters {
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } // boulder
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } // iceboulder
} } } } }
 @Body[Ike]    { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Laythe] { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Vall]   { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Tylo]   { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Pol]    { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters {
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } //boulder
	Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } //stalactite (sic)
} } } } }
 @Body[Bop]    { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
 @Body[Eeloo]  { @PQS { %Mods { %LandControl { %Scatters { %Scatter { %Components { %ScatterColliders { } } } } } } } }
}

 

I do not notice any change in performance.  It is similar to flying around the buildings of the KSC.  It does make surfaces more interesting, and more dangerous.

Edited by OHara
give secondary scatter like cactus colliders, too

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On 11/27/2018 at 8:20 PM, GarrisonChisholm said:

I know it is off topic, but remember the thread we had going a couple years ago about fixing science to the heliopause and interstellar space should you reach that far, that would have been a much easier add and nothing ever came of it, despite seemingly a lot of agreement and support.  I would love your geology/search for life biome layer though.

Recovering a "Materials study from Interstellar Space" would be a huge achievement, and worth the bragging points (or reputation in-game). Should technically be possible by defining an upper altitude for "space high over the sun"

More biomes in Jool would be a good addition and give a reward to the engineering challenge of designing a Jooldiver. Logically some area of Jool could be defined as "equatorial cloud bands" "polar storms" or "great green spot" without much difficulty, though a texture update would be needed.

We can get a "crew report while flying over Kerbin's grasslands" etc so it should work.

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Well, this is a link for the think-tank we had back then.  I had one person much smarter than I say it could be done, but I tried several avenues and the ones I thought were viable were non-starters.

 

 

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If there was something that I really would like to see in a future update, it's a planet overhaul.

Duna was initially having its canyon, which made it visually pleasant, and for the players, interesting to explore. Now, all the surface of planet looks globally the same. Once you landed on a planet, trying to get somewhere else on it makes little sense in term of exploration.

https://spacedock.info/mod/1041/Duna Restoration Project

Our own Solar system, and the probes we sent there has proven us that planets are diverse, beautiful, and each new feature discovered was a call to exploration.

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On 11/27/2018 at 6:50 PM, The_Cat_In_Space said:

I'll stop you right there. Clouds probably won't be implemented in the game due to the performance issues they would create.

Graphic...options.

On 11/27/2018 at 6:50 PM, The_Cat_In_Space said:

We don't really want clouds in stock KSP

Yes we do.

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On 11/26/2018 at 1:20 PM, jevry said:

Next to this there is the issue of them being HUGE (duh :P) making rovers kind of boring as well since getting anywhere takes longer than doing a maneuver with ion engines divided over multiple passes of the periapsis. especially on low gravity planets (or if the rover is a bit wibbly wobbly... ... ... stuff) this is a problem as it is extra dangerous to let the rover drive on cruise control and do something else in the meantime.

Huge? Far from, actually. Stock scale is but 10% of real scale. A lot of seasoned players are quite unsatisfied by the caps on velocities due to stock scale (which are fine for making it easy for people to get into space and want to learn spaceflight stuff). I personally like 2.5x~3.2x because Mach 6 on air-breathing is where flying in atmo only begins to satisfy me. :P

The problem of rovers can be solved by two things:

  1. A rover autopilot mod (Bon Voyage is the best known. There may be other, idk) or a mod that makes rovers apply brakes when they exceed a certain velocity (such as Smart Parts). But such things you've already hinted at.
  2. The point of this thread: giving more interactive and exploratory features. Make it more worth it to send rovers and do those long driving missions.

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On 1/14/2019 at 12:57 AM, JadeOfMaar said:
  1. The point of this thread: giving more interactive and exploratory features. Make it more worth it to send rovers and do those long driving missions.

Others may have longer limits but I tend to think drives over 5-10km are pretty grueling. A rover autopilot function would be helpful, but Im not really much more excited about watching the computer drive for miles on end than doing it myself. That's why I think part of the solution should be special classes of science-able ground scatter, something you could see nearby or on the horizon and that would both add visual interest and gameplay incentives for reaching and studying. The trick is to make them rare enough that you might want to drive rather than walk, and not so rare that you're driving forever to reach them. 

Edited by Pthigrivi

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On 11/26/2018 at 10:20 AM, jevry said:

other nice things to add could be more texts describing locations and what the kerbal thinks of the sightings , and collectibles when you surface sample at interesting locations which you can view in a rock trophy room. because people like to look at rocks right?

a bit of a side story of the findings as i just described could be interesting.

3

From the wiki page about Duna (The spoiler section)

Quote

One anomalous feature on Duna is a small, pyramid-like hill emitting an SSTV signal. When decrypted, it shows a diagram-like image of three figures standing next to the hill itself, which was originally part of the developer's story but later scrapped.

 

and from the easter egg wiki page:

Quote

In a forum post from late 2013,[1] Squad member Jeff C.(NovaSilisko) described an idea he had for connecting many easter eggs into a story concerning a civilization which predated the Kerbals. Experiments with interstellar travel resulted in the homeworld of this "precursor civilization" being flung out into an extremely distant orbit. Before they froze to death, they launched monoliths and other messages onto many planets and moons in hopes of seeding intelligent life. Instead, they created Kerbals, not-so-intelligent life.

The planet would not show up in any map and would be too distant to be observed with a telescope, making locating it by chance nearly impossible. However, players would be able to find transmitters beaming out SSTV signals on various bodies, each one of which would provide part of the orbital parameters necessary to locate it. The planet would be a bit smaller than Kerbin, covered in ruined cities and frozen oceans, and perpetually in twilight due to being so far from Kerbol.

The only element of this narrative which made it into the game is the SSTV transmitter on Duna, which transmits an image originally intended to depict 4 members of the precursor civilization standing on their homeworld, with the logo of their government. Had the narrative story been completed, it would also have contained part of the orbital parameters. Because the story was never implemented into the game, this explanation for the SSTV signal's imagery is arguably non-canon.[2]

 

In other words, there was going to be a huge backstory created to add more interesting stuff, but it was scrapped. I'm not saying that it's a bad idea to add interesting terrain features and stuff, I'm just saying it was in the works but was scrapped.

The above stuff aside, I think this is a great idea.

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