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Why do rocket engines emit no light?


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I have come across perhaps the most frustrating non-thing in Kerbal. I am trying to land on the North Pole of Mun and aside from the only locations actually labeled "Polar" instead of "Polar Lowlands" are the deep ravines. OK, so I need to land in a friggin ravine, but why do the rocket engines not illuminate the ground AT ALL? Is this purposefully to make it impossible to land on the "Poles" of Mun? What gives with no illumination from rocket engines? had anyone at KSP development ever watched a real rocket engine fire and see how it illuminates like a few square miles? This is my first powered landing in darkness and I never expected there to be no light from the engines. 

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Unfortunately the stock engine/plumes/exhaust produce no light, so you either need to include spotlights in your build or add the feature via modding (hopefully it'll be part of the stock feature set in KSP2?)

 

If you're on computer (PC/Mac/Linux), LGG has (no idea where he finds the time to service all these mods) taken on Tajampi's Engine Lighting mod which adds the feature

 

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54 minutes ago, r3_141592654 said:

but why do the rocket engines not illuminate the ground AT ALL?

Better question: Why does the one jet engine (the Whiplash, I think) have engine light?

Simply put, KSP started out as a very, very, basic game. Many of its little features tend to be an interpretation of a very necessary mod. Engine light can be handwaved by adding spotlight parts to your ship. It's not worth Squad's effort, I suppose, to add the feature to engines, and especially, add a module for customizing it.

5 minutes ago, r3_141592654 said:

Will that mod install without me having to restart my game?

No. Any mod that's installed, tweaked or uninstalled needs KSP to restart to notice the change.

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40 minutes ago, JadeOfMaar said:

Better question: Why does the one jet engine (the Whiplash, I think) have engine light?

Simply put, KSP started out as a very, very, basic game. Many of its little features tend to be an interpretation of a very necessary mod. Engine light can be handwaved by adding spotlight parts to your ship. It's not worth Squad's effort, I suppose, to add the feature to engines, and especially, add a module for customizing it.

No. Any mod that's installed, tweaked or uninstalled needs KSP to restart to notice the change.

Yes, I meant will I need to start a new save file to have the engine lights take effect?

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while light from engines would be natural, I think it's lack just provides for another thing to design around. Either simply just put some spot lights on the underside, or have "depth probes" which you drop as you descend and watch for when they hit the ground (and/or put lamps on them too).  It also kinda makes for a requirement to send small (easy to land) probes to a location before attempting to bring your larger craft. That way you'll have something to aim for.
Oh and in recent KSP, you can switch the altimeter to terrain mode and go hardcore and land just by your instruments. 

1 hour ago, r3_141592654 said:

Yes, I meant will I need to start a new save file to have the engine lights take effect?

no, very few mods (if any) would require starting a new save.

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37 minutes ago, r3_141592654 said:

I have a very intense computer that can handle whatever I throw at it.

As do many others, myself included. 
That has little to do with the question that was asked though. 

As for the question “How do I add lighting to engines?”, get the Engine Lighting mod. 

Edited by Jognt
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17 hours ago, Jognt said:

Why? Install EngineLight, and you’ll realize that lighting is pretty cpu intensive. 

Yet it's not like KSP2 is going to avoid including engine lighting for this reason (the footage of the floppy rocket shows it being lit around the bottom when the engines turn on).

The real reason, I think, is more to do with KSP's long iterative development history, and the fact that mods already do a lot of things they would add in a finished version of the game (clouds are another example) but since modders already made and continue to maintain these things since long before Squad could get around to implementing their own version of such features, well, they may as well not bother now.

Edited by Guest
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1 hour ago, Rocket Witch said:

Yet it's not like KSP2 is going to avoid including engine lighting for this reason (the footage of the floppy rocket shows it being lit around the bottom when the engines turn on).

The real reason, I think, is more to do with KSP's long iterative development history, and the fact that mods already do a lot of things they would add in a finished version of the game (clouds are another example) but since modders already made and continue to maintain these things since long before Squad could get around to implementing their own version of such features, well, they may as well not bother now.

Ok let me rephrase that to “Intensive in KSP 1.”

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Should be noted that a lot of vacuum engines don't produce much light anyway and nothing like the exhausts in KSP.

Of course that doesn't look cool so KSP has big ol' flames shooting out the back of your frog-people's tin can.

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It's a visual oddity of the game, but if you really need to land in a place and there's a reasonable chance it'll be dark where you touchdown, put landing lights on your lander.  At least two lights in parallel around the bottom of your lander.  I find they're also helpful for seeing how close you are to the ground, since due to the square-cube nature of their projection the breadth of illumination will narrow.

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I wonder about this -- I clearly recall back in 1.4.1 I was able to make a Minmus landing, in the dark, with a lander on which I'd neglected to install floodlights, by watching the navball (for attitude) and the dim, faint spot of light on the surface from the lander engine.

Now, this wasn't the all-illuminating flare of a kerolox flame, but there was light, which I took to be the glow of the combustion chamber cast through the nozzle throat.  It was about what I'd have expected for a hypergolic fuel set like a hydrazine derivative and a nitric acid derivative (MMH/N2O4, for instance) -- the same mix the LEM descent engine used (though in fact a bit dimmer).

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