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PAX West Pre-show info dump (Thanks to NoMrBond for bringing this to our attention, all credit goes to them)


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  • #kerbalspaceprogram2 #ksp2 INFO DUMP! Just got out of a meeting with 8 other content creators at Star Theory. Here are the notes I took. Disclaimer: Phrasing my own. Allow a margin of interpretation error just in case.
  • Modding: A major priority of development. Tools are being developed right now using Lua but the language isn't necessarily final. PQS+ has a ton of hooks for custom tools.
  • NO DRM on single player KSP. Can't comment on DRM for multi-player - still working on how account auth flows will work.
  • The entire simulation core has been rewritten. Multithreading has been addressed but I won't get into it because people define it differently. Way fewer bottlenecks, much more optimized is the idea.
  • There is no plan to introduce premium currencies, loot boxes, other "freemium" sort of stuff. The plan is to stick to KSP1's content release style.
  • Note on the trailer: Everything in that trailer is an in game asset. The engine shown at the beginning around the mun is metallic hydrogen and a bridge tech between the KSP1 and KSP2 technologies.
  • Kerbin's overall geography is the same. Other planets have had facelifts to give additional geographic history. The kerbin system has the same bodies. The game engine now allows for axial tilts.
  • Overall design philosophy behind terrain: "No two landing sites should feel the same." Also - moonlight shadows. Small but cool.
  • How many new systems: "Multiple." Sorry guys, I tried
  • You can now create rockets in individual sections and piece them together. Yay QOL! There is also blueprint style build mode that makes placing and aligning parts easier. The VAB is overall much much larger.
  • Binary. Planets. At least possible with modding, we didn't see any official systems other than kerbin, but the potential was demoed.
  • On ease of access: Relax, this is still Kerbal, it hasn't been dumbed down at all. Seriously, it is in great hands. The UI and new user experience is totally redone. Tutorials are fully guided and even animated, sort of in a Hitchhiker's Guide style. It looked cool.
  • The new Maneuever element on the HUD is a 3D representation of your ships orientation in regards to prograde, normal, etc. Useful.
  • Colonies: You can build anywhere you can land. You don't need flat ground. Colonies are built, not grown, and will need resources supplied in order to build Colony buildings and any rockets/vehicles you build at them.
  • Colony population does not grow over time. Colonists are brought in manually. Colonists also - ahem - multiply when you accomplish something and give them a reason to celebrate. Bottom line is you can't fast forward to grow population.
  • Colonies are meant to be springboards for deeper exploration. Orbital Colonies are great places to build interstellar rockets and move past the Kerbol system.
  • PC optimization comes first in development. Consoles need additional attention to make them feel native and not like a port, but that is important to them. Console players, you are a priority and you'll get love. They know the problems with KSP1 console.
  • Much higher part counts are going to be available but they can't give numbers at this stage of development.
  • Kerbals experience force! You can see it in their portraits and cockpit view. They even black out. And scream and flail in terror. They're much more animated and expressive, and have emotes you can use as well.
  • Planet rings have big rocks. Felt a bit like Elite, was pretty cool.
  • Bottom line-- Going in I was afraid that like so many sequels it would be "streamlined" by stripping away elements. It's absolutely not the case. This is Kerbal. Breathe easy. We were on the same page with all questions and concerns (and our group had a lot). They got this.
  • Also: SO MANY THANKS to @KerbalSpaceP for putting this together. Man, it was so cool. Absolutely a treat.
  • Ooh, addendum-- explosions will be different in space or in atmo, whether tanks are full or empty. To quote: "Every explosion should be a special snowflake." I KNOW RIGHT

Matt PAX West (Hi Seattle!)‏ @badnewsbaron 28m28 minutes ago

https://twitter.com/badnewsbaron

Thanks again to @NoMrBond. He posted it in my other PAX west thread, but I felt this deserved its own thread since it's important. Go like their comment, not this one: 

 

Edited by GoldForest
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Major focus on modding, no DRM (for singleplayer at least), way more efficient simulation (high frames and high part counts), massive and vastly upgraded VAB, overhauled planet terrain and axial tilt support, rings with rocks in them, enhanced explosions... the more I read about this game, the more I feel like I'm gonna suddenly wake up and be disappointed it was all a dream... it honestly sounds too good to be true sometimes. I hope it can live up to the hype!

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Do I need to add characters to this post? Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua

This is just a bunch of long-time KSP streamers and modders eating tacos and chatting about KSP2 after meeting with the devs

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4 minutes ago, fourfa said:

Do I need to add characters to this post? Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua

This is just a bunch of long-time KSP streamers and modders eating tacos and chatting about KSP2 after meeting with the devs

Thank you for posting this. 

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8 hours ago, GoldForest said:

NO DRM on single player KSP. Can't comment on DRM for multi-player - still working on how account auth flows will work.

Ok until someone reminded me that the Strauss Zelnick is on record for repeatedly claiming that a online only game does not have DRM in it at all because its just a feature that enables live services, I had to agree this sounded good.

granted, that said the ability to mod in anything will hopefully keep that at bay

 

until I remembered that Bethesda monitised mods with the creation club and has hinted that creation club mods (only)  are coming to fallout 76.

 

granted again that currently filtering mods through the creation club may be the only hope of keeping the game stable currently.

 

I honestly hate being pessimistic about that but the man has repeatedly argued in favor of even more invasive micro transactions by claiming things like loot boxes aren’t even a problem it’s a negligible handful of people  who wastefully overspend and then whine about it who are the problem. Then argued that people who do that should not get there money back because it’s like mcDonalds.

Edited by [email protected]
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5 minutes ago, Bartybum said:

Interesting that colonies won't be self-sustaining/self-expanding. Would be cool to only have to keep constructing until they had a self-production output, at which point they could manufacture their own stuff

Well they can be one self sufficient from a not reliant on Kerbin sort of way in that they can mine their own resources, but you're going to probably need at least 2 or 3 bases seeing as resources are getting an overhaul. So you might have to do some trading between colonies. 

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20 minutes ago, Bartybum said:

Either way, this gives me assurance that the devs aren't taking KSP 2's development lightly, which is good. I have good faith they'll be trying their hardest

Agreed... I think we're all more worried about the publisher at this point. If anyone messes this up, it seems more likely to be them.

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Hi folks,

I can comment on this, since I was also attending the event yesterday.  Thanks to @GoldForest for posting here; I can confirm the bullet points in the quote above.

Regarding this:

Quote
  • NO DRM on single player KSP. Can't comment on DRM for multi-player - still working on how account auth flows will work.
  • There is no plan to introduce premium currencies, loot boxes, other "freemium" sort of stuff. The plan is to stick to KSP1's content release style.

That was me.  I was the one who asked those questions. 

Among those of us who were invited yesterday, I'm probably the person most familiar with the "pulse" of the forums-- so I figured I ought to try to "represent" you guys and ask them questions that I know have been eating at a lot of you, because I figured you'd appreciate some straight answers.

So I asked them, point blank, very explicitly, no wiggle room, about these two points.  (I also asked "will there be any requirement for a network connection or 'logging in' when playing single-player", to which the answer was a definite and unequivocal "no".)  I stressed how concerned the community is about this, especially in light of what's been done with some other T2 titles.

And they were quite definite about these points, and I'm strongly inclined to believe them (my rationale below).

 

On 8/29/2019 at 12:27 AM, [email protected] said:

Ok until someone reminded me that the Strauss Zelnick is on record for repeatedly claiming that a online only game does not have DRM in it at all because its just a feature that enables live services, I had to agree this sounded good.

granted, that said the ability to mod in anything will hopefully keep that at bay

until I remembered that Bethesda monitised mods with the creation club and has hinted that creation club mods (only)  are coming to fallout 76.

granted again that currently filtering mods through the creation club may be the only hope of keeping the game stable currently.

I honestly hate being pessimistic about that but the man has repeatedly argued in favor of even more invasive micro transactions by claiming things like loot boxes aren’t even a problem it’s a negligible handful of people  who wastefully overspend and then whine about it who are the problem. Then argued that people who do that should not get there money back because it’s like mcDonalds.

On 8/29/2019 at 5:51 AM, ThatGuyWithALongUsername said:

Agreed... I think we're all more worried about the publisher at this point. If anyone messes this up, it seems more likely to be them.

 

I totally understand your concerns (and those of plenty of other forum users who have expressed this same worry).  It's a legitimate concern.  That's why I made a point of asking it very explicitly, and also of paying close attention to not just what they answered, but also how they answered.  And because of the "how", I find their answers credible.  Here's my take:

These people are professionals.  This is not their first rodeo; they're a game studio and have released other titles before and know how to make announcements to the public.  They also know that it is much better to refuse to answer a question, than to give an answer that's wrong or misleading.

There were nine of us visiting, and as you'd imagine, we came with a ton of questions, and were not even slightly shy about asking them.  We asked all kinds of things, including ones that were admittedly "long shots" that I'd be surprised if ST were actually willing to answer.

And the folks there were professional about it.  There were many questions-- perhaps even more than half-- that they couldn't or wouldn't answer.  For example, anything at all about multi-player?  Nope, sorry, can't answer that yet.  Will there be life support in the game?  Mmmmm, well, no comment at this time.

So for any area where they weren't sure or hadn't settled the matter, they weren't at all shy about telling us "sorry, can't answer that".  There were some other questions where we asked them, where they had only a tentative answer-- i.e. "will there be an early-access program for modders?", the answer was "that sounds like a great idea and we'd like to, but we really don't know yet whether that would be possible" or something along those lines.

But for some questions-- the ones where they actually knew the answer and were at liberty to share with us-- they were unequivocal.  Immediate answer, firmly stated, no "weasel words" or I'm-not-sure-about-this body language, just a prompt and unequivocal "this is how it'll be" type of answer.

So...

  • "Will there be DRM?"  No, at least not in single-player.  You'll be able to copy the game's folder tree, just like KSP 1.  (For one thing, they need to allow that to let people have different sets of mods installed.  Otherwise they'd have to implement some sort of dynamic mod-switching ability, which it sounds like they don't have planned-- it would be a chunk of extra work for them, and they're super busy.)
  • "Will there be loot boxes or microtransactions or anything at all in the game where you pay real-world currency for stuff?"  No, it'll be like KSP 1 in that regard.  (Though they didn't rule out the possibility of some sort of DLC in the future.)
  • "Will the single-player game require logging on or a network connection at all?"  No, it won't.  (The person commented "I've got a buddy in the merchant marine, and KSP is the only thing that keeps him sane at long weeks at sea, and he'd kill me if we did that".)  ;)

 

Now, after reading the above, I can imagine you might wonder,

"Yes, Snark, we're sure the devs at Star Theory are nice, but we're worried about the publisher."

A reasonable concern.  However, a few things to bear in mind.  First, there were Private Division people in the room there, too.  They weren't the primary presenters (that was mostly Star Theory), but they definitely had a presence there and were part of the discussion.  So it's pretty safe to say that anything Star Theory said in that room has the publisher's blessing.  They wouldn't be saying that stuff if they weren't sure about it-- they'd just say "no comment" or something like that, as they did to quite a few other questions.  But these questions, they were quite definite on.

"Yes, Snark, but you're kinda one of them, of course you'll think that.  You're biased."

Well, I'll let you folks come to your own conclusions about that.  Bear in mind, though, that I'm just a forum user like you-- I happen to be a moderator, but that's a volunteer position and I don't work for T2, Private Division, or Star Theory.  I don't get paid for this and don't have any personal reason to be biased, other than being a self-admitted KSP fanboi.  ;)  I wasn't financially compensated in any way for any of this stuff-- they paid for my parking yesterday, and they gave us lunch, but that was it.  (In the interest of full disclosure, they also got us passes to PAX West, which I'll use tomorrow so that I can go have another shot at "interviewing" them in an afternoon time slot-- more on that after I've done it.  But I expect that's about all the time I'll spend at PAX.  I don't like conventions or big crowds of people, it's really not my scene.)

 

Of course, nobody has a crystal ball, but I'm pretty confident in my read of the situation.  I've been in the software biz for a quarter-century and am very familiar with the various dynamics that go on-- both the weaselly corporate-speak that companies may do, and the direct no-nonsense attitudes that pretty much all technical people have.  These folks are for real.  And they really love KSP.  They're fans.  Heck, as excited as we were to be there, they were as least as excited as us.  These are KSP fans.  "OMG that's Scott Manley!They were wanting to take selfies with us:0.0:

(No, I wasn't as big a celebrity as Scott.  But I did have a couple of people come up and say how much they enjoy reading what I write on the forums.  They're here, they read this stuff.)

 

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Thanks for clarifying a lot of that.

 

First I Generally agree with you, and honestly I do not have a problem with certain levels of Monetization, Like DLC and subscriptions(again within reason).  that said, unfortunately, it’s the parent company that all to often has the final say in all of this. 

 

And lets face face it there’s two many people in the game industry like, peat Hines, who see it as there job to bald face lie to there customers.

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5 minutes ago, [email protected] said:

And lets face face it there’s two many people in the game industry like, peat Hines, who see it as there job to bald face lie to there customers.

There are people (and companies) in any industry who are dishonest.  I'm not passing judgment on anyone outside of yesterday's meeting here, just remember that "different people are different".

So I'm not commenting on anyone else, just saying that I was there in the room.  I could see the body language.  And I've been swimming with corporate sharks in the software biz for a quarter-century.  I'm familiar with the types.  There are the technical types, who are-- pretty much universally-- direct and straightforward and honest because they literally don't know how to be any other way.  And there are corporate types who have to spout a corporate line that may or may not be tied to reality.  There are the more open-and-honest type of situations, and then there are the weaselly ones, and I have a reasonable amount of experience of spotting the danger signs and "tells" when there's a certain amount of repurposed bovine excrement flowing.

And I'll say that my radar wasn't picking up danger signals yesterday.  They were straight shooters.  A hallmark of weaseling is excessive surety and having bold definitive answers for everything-- they didn't do that.  There were tons of questions that they couldn't or wouldn't answer, and they weren't the least bit shy about that.

So based on my experience in the industry and with these types of people, I'm saying I find their statements credible.  You can draw your own conclusions about that, of course.

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26 minutes ago, Snark said:

They're here, they read this stuff.

That's good to know. So all the discussions about features and what not have a chance to be noticed, and may help dictate the direction on whatever topic is being discussed.

 

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  • Note on the trailer: Everything in that trailer is an in game asset. 

I really hope they were only referring to the presence of the new elements like propulsion, large tanks, etc, and not some of those old parts.  I would hate to go back to some of those legacy parts like the old gray/yellow 2.5m monoprop tank, the Mk1-2 pod, or the old RE-L10 Poodle.

I've been hoping that Squad can finish getting part revamps on the remainder of legacy parts like the Mainsail, Skipper, Reliant, Swivel, and a few others that are showing their age.  But those four definitely.  I certainly don't want to take steps backward; I'm hoping I'm just taking the quote too literally at this point.

Edited by Raptor9
apparently I can't grammer before my morning coffee
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I can't look at the trailer right now thanks to the borrowed computer but is there new planets?

If so take a snapshot and put it in our new planets forum ;)

Edited by The Doodling Astronaut
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I’ll be talking more about this on Sunday whenI will be streaming.  However, a few comments.

First, for full disclosure, Private Division paid my airfare and hotel, as well as a pass int PAXWest.  Beyond that, I have no financial or legal connection with PD or ST.

So, first off, I was the “old man” in the group.  You can take that however you want.  I have had a bad experience with another unnamed game which I bought a year in advance, and it turn d out to be absolute crap.  So, when I first heard about KSP-2, after the initial euphoria, I have been deliberately remaining skeptical. I was contacted a month ago about this, and had no idea it was anything other than a “thank you” to people who have  contributed to KSP.  After yesterday, I have moved from skepticism to cautious/hopeful optimism.  

Rather than list details which have been done before, let me address why they invited us in.

While they didn't say how long its been in development, they did say it was more than a year, and I suspect it started right around the time KSP was acquired by Take Two. So IMHO, it has probably been two years in the making, with another nine months to go before release. It seems that they finally got to a point where they have something to show, and wanted our input to help them prioritize what to do for the release.  It was obvious from their expressions that a lot of what we were asking was about stuff they had planned, either for the initial release or future updates, and the “no comment” was because they didn't want to commit to anything which wasn't set hard and fast in the initial release.

Hopefully we helped them, and it was fairly obvious that the input wasn't going to end with this meeting.  We did see the trailer they are going to show at PAX, and all I will say is to watch it, you will be in for some surprises.

 

Edited by linuxgurugamer
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12 hours ago, fourfa said:

This is just a bunch of long-time KSP streamers and modders eating tacos and chatting about KSP2 after meeting with the devs

Orion Drive RCS system...  I can't breathe...

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9 minutes ago, The Doodling Astronaut said:

I can't look at the trailer right now thanks to the borrowed computer but is there new planets?

If so take a snapshot and put it in our new planets forum ;)

No new planets in the Kerbin system,   but there are other star systems to visit, with a whole bunch of new planets.

23 minutes ago, Raptor9 said:
  • Note on the trailer: Everything in that trailer is an in game asset. 

I really hope they were only referring to the presence of the new elements like propulsion, large tanks, etc, and not some of those old parts.  I would hate to go back to some of those legacy parts like the old gray/yellow 2.5m monoprop tank, the Mk1-2 pod, or the old RE-L10 Poodle.

I've been hoping that Squad can finish getting part revamps on the remainder of legacy parts like the Mainsail, Skipper, Reliant, Swivel, and a few others that are showing their age.  But those four definitely.  I certainly don't want to take steps backward; I'm hoping I'm just taking the quote too literally at this point.

That is interesting.  The poodle, for example.  They had finished the nw poodle, and then Squad released the poodle update, so now they don't match.  Keep in mind these are two separate products, and yes, i would expect that Squad will finish the parts revamps,

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7 minutes ago, linuxgurugamer said:

Keep in mind these are two separate products

That right there is what I keep forgetting.  It's a small but very significant distinction between an "update of KSP" and "a new KSP altogether".

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