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How to access planets before landing on them in-game?


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Hello fellow bedroom astronauts!

TL-DR: how can I work out atmosphere heights, pressures, stuff to help me land on new bodies in game without cheat sheets? 

One thing I really appreciate in the game is the incredibly steep learning curve! I’m now at a stage where I’ve got orbitals, mining operations and tourist busses flying round Kerbin and it’s moons, and have sent a few probes (and one brave astronaut, RIP) to Duna and eve.

I would like to take this further but need to know more about about these celestial bodies so I can build something suitable instead of getting all the way there to realise it’s not gonna work. 

Of course I could use cheat sheets to figure out DV needed or atmosphere heights, strength of gravity etc but I’d rather use the in game instruments to work it out myself! Is this possible? Besides reading the temperature none of the data makes much sense! Would anyone be able to point me in the right direction? 

Thanks in advance 

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If you go into the Tracking Station, all you need to do is zoom out until you see more than just Kerbin, double-click on the celestial body in question (you can zoom into it now and take a long look) and then on the bottom right click one of the information tabs - either Resources, Information and one other - just the essential information here. There are little blurbs in the KSPedia (the book icon) that gives humurous, rather than really informational, data on each celestial body.

Edited by Wobbly Av8r
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4 hours ago, Rustdog said:

Thanks in advance 

I do not think you can find the info you seeking without cheat sheets.

Make Kerbin, Mun and Minmus your testing grounds.

They represent in some scale most of the challenges you will face anywhere in the system.

Your probe/lander will then be able to survive long enough to gather all the info you need for the next journey.

Having failed missions is not a bad thing as long you pay close on what failed and when it failed.

Its the Kerbal way you know, fail is part of the fun :) .

Edited by Boyster
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I run a "real" save where I do not cheat, and a "simulation" save where I cheat vehicles to other planets for testing purposes. Once I get a craft design working in the test save, I copy it over to the "real" save to run missions with it. 

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4 hours ago, Rustdog said:

I would like to take this further but need to know more about about these celestial bodies so I can build something suitable instead of getting all the way there to realise it’s not gonna work. 

One thing that the game will not tell you is when to leave for another planet.

They designed all of these worlds and the ability to make vehicles to visit them all but neglected to give the player a transfer window for any of them. They left it to the player to do it the hard way. Build a ship add the crew, blast into Kerbol (the Sun) orbit and then wait maybe a year or so for a burn to even begin your journey. Either that or you must use an external reference source or a mod to get the windows.
I think that the devs never got out of Kerbin's SOI while testing and so it didn't even occur to them that a method was needed. They will have cheated practically every craft to the other world to test them without thinking about how the player was going to get there.

Having said that, out of all the people who have played KSP only a very small percentage will have actually left the Kerbin SOI even once.

You can bet that they will have a widget for Transfer Windows in KSP2.

D.

 

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3 hours ago, Wobbly Av8r said:

If you go into the Tracking Station, all you need to do is zoom out until you see more than just Kerbin, double-click on the celestial body in question (you can zoom into it now and take a long look) and then on the bottom right click one of the information tabs - either Resources, Information and one other - just the essential information here. There are little blurbs in the KSPedia (the book icon) that gives humurous, rather than really informational, data on each celestial body.

That’s exactly it! Thank you! Was more hoping I’d have to discover that information by getting close or using scanners, but I supposed id have even less life haha

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3 hours ago, Boyster said:

I do not think you can find the info you seeking without cheat sheets.

Make Kerbin, Mun and Minmus your testing grounds.

They represent in some scale most of the challenges you will face anywhere in the system.

Your probe/lander will then be able to survive long enough to gather all the info you need for the next journey.

Having failed missions is not a bad thing as long you pay close on what failed and when it failed.

Its the Kerbal way you know, fail is part of the fun :) .

Of course I like the failing and rescue missions too! But man Duna is soo much further and expensive! I’ve managed to scrape together 4 mil so the timing is now! 

I did work out the Duna window with trail and error nodeing! But that wasn’t fun at all so I’m okay with the that transfer window site!

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@Rustdog As an additional help - in the editor, during construction, you can configure the dV helper tool to use a different celestial body's values for computation. For example, you could set it to Eve to figure out how your engines fare in the thick atmosphere, or even just to the Mun to figure out your Mun-relative TWR.

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12 hours ago, Daveroski said:

One thing that the game will not tell you is when to leave for another planet.

They designed all of these worlds and the ability to make vehicles to visit them all but neglected to give the player a transfer window for any of them. They left it to the player to do it the hard way. Build a ship add the crew, blast into Kerbol (the Sun) orbit and then wait maybe a year or so for a burn to even begin your journey. Either that or you must use an external reference source or a mod to get the windows.
I think that the devs never got out of Kerbin's SOI while testing and so it didn't even occur to them that a method was needed. They will have cheated practically every craft to the other world to test them without thinking about how the player was going to get there.

 

 

nah, figuring out a hohmann transfer is not difficult. simulate your prograde burn with a manuever node until your orbit intersects that of the other planet. this will tell you the position of the other planet when your ship would be there. if it's not in the rigth place, you just have to wait for the planets to align, taking into account that the inner planet moves faster.

for example, i was trying to go to jool, i simulated the manuever node, and i saw that that i would end up behind jool. so i had to wait for kerbin to catch up, i figured the launch window would be in the near future. on the other hand, i got the same for an eve launch, but since eve moves faster than kerbin, it would mean eve needed to go all the way around the sun before a launch window would happen.

by the way, what you describe as entering solar orbit and then making a prograde burn is horribly inefficient. you lose all oberth effect.

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12 hours ago, Rustdog said:

Was more hoping I’d have to discover that information by getting close or using scanners

This mod is the closest to that goal, I think:

I don't know if it gives you all the information about a planet at once when discovered or if more scanning is required.

Edited by HansAcker
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On 9/4/2020 at 5:15 AM, king of nowhere said:

nah, figuring out a hohmann transfer is not difficult.  Blah Blah Blah

Are you actually trying to argue my point?

Not difficult for who? You? Me? Someone just getting ready to leave Kerbin SOI for the first time?

You did get the point. Didn't you?

[snip]

D.

 

Edited by Gargamel
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On 9/4/2020 at 7:01 AM, Daveroski said:

Are you actually trying to argue my point?

Not difficult for who? You? Me? Someone just getting ready to leave Kerbin SOI for the first time?

You did get the point. Didn't you?

[snip]

D.

 

[snip]

 

now, if your point is that this game has a very steep learning curve and the tutorials are inadequate, i fully agree. there are so many things that are not clear to anyone who is not already an experienced player. making sure your ship has enough deltaV for an interplanetary mission, that its solar panels/cooling are adequate for the place it's going, that its rockets have the right TWR for the new environment, and in all this, the slightest mistake can cause the rocket to malfunction and make the mission fail.

but in all those difficulties, finding a hohmann transfer window is one of the easiest to overcome. unless you are going for moho or eeloo, that have very small SoI and you have to manuever carefully to find them. furthermore, people who have an interest for space - as i assume would anyone who keeps playing this game long enough to get out of kerbin SoI - are generally knowledgeable enough to either know the basics of transfer windows, or to be able to get the concept from wikipedia. which is not the case for evetything else.

Edited by Gargamel
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1 hour ago, king of nowhere said:

now, if your point is that this game has a very steep learning curve and the tutorials are inadequate Blah Blah Blah

That you have to wonder that proves you didn't get the point.

Bored now. :o not talking to you any more.

D.

 

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On 9/4/2020 at 8:25 AM, king of nowhere said:

but in all those difficulties, finding a hohmann transfer window is one of the easiest to overcome.

You’re kind of ignoring a handful of things... sure, hohmann transfers are easy... efficient hohmann transfer are tedious, and can be difficult to align. Sure, I just sent a random craft out of kerbin’s soi, and was able to get flybys with both Moho and eelo... but they were inefficient transfers, and I didn’t have enough fuel to perform an orbital burn, or make it back to kerbin... I was just screwing around with craft design, in sandbox mode, so I didn’t really care about round trips... but you can’t just launch and “find a window,” because there are lots of “windows,” there are a handful of mathematically optimal windows... especially if you have a specific mission plan.

 

That said, I find it kind of silly to object to dV cheat sheet, and other online resources... for example, all science is built upon the discoveries of past scientists (We stand on the shoulders of the giants that came before us). Transfer window utilities are the most basic of which... the mathematics have existed for centuries, and you shouldn’t have to rely on trial and error, or your own math skill, to figure it out. When we start getting into atmospheric altitudes, the game is a bit thin on utilities, and there is no in game manner of determining aerobraking altitudes (it also seems to vary from craft to craft, and person to person)... so this is something that you’d either NEED to use an online resource or trial and error... if there are particular objectives you are planning, like a Duna landing, and return trip, you’ll never know how much dV you’ll need to reach Duna orbit, from the surface, without the resources (unless you wanna plug through all the math)... so, it is pretty much up to you... I feel like these resources are perfectly fine, because the game is more about craft design and piloting, and not your ability to generate pork chop plots. I’d say, it’s cheating once you start using other people’s designs... however, nothing wrong with other people’s designs inspiring your own...

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On 9/5/2020 at 2:36 PM, MarsUltor said:

I’d say, it’s cheating once you start using other people’s designs... however, nothing wrong with other people’s designs inspiring your own...

I'd say is cheating if you start to say how someone else is supposed to enjoy then game. ;)

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10 hours ago, Spricigo said:

I'd say is cheating if you start to say how someone else is supposed to enjoy then game. ;)

Ok? Did I say cheating and enjoyment had any correlation? The whole topic is about CHEAT sheets; I provided an opinion on what I find constitutes as cheating, and why one should not feel bad about using these resources... if you want to download other folks craft files and fly them, I’m not telling you how to play, if you like the piloting aspect of the game... BUT, the game’s primary focus appears to be on building craft, seeing them fail, and learning from your failure. There was not a single letter of my post that would suggest there’s one way to “enjoy” the game, or the way I enjoy it is the “best.”

 

I literally stated “so, it’s pretty much up to you...” in my post...

Edited by MarsUltor
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33 minutes ago, MarsUltor said:

Did I say cheating and enjoyment had any correlation?

Did I say you did? 

1 hour ago, MarsUltor said:

 I provided an opinion on what I find constitutes as cheating

I provided a different opinion.

So, how about we just accept that our opinion don't seem to exactly match instead of getting trapped in a pointless argument about who said what? 

 

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On 9/8/2020 at 8:30 AM, Spricigo said:

I provided a different opinion

Actually, you didn’t... you made a snarky response, that mischaracterized my point, and then you got upvoted for it... it is the latter part that annoyed me the most...

 

On 9/8/2020 at 8:30 AM, Spricigo said:

So, how about we just accept that our opinion don't seem to exactly match instead of getting trapped in a pointless argument about who said what? 

 

I don’t disagree with this sentiment, but like I said above, you kind of mischaracterized my point, with snark, and got upvoted for it... 

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4 hours ago, MarsUltor said:

Actually, you didn’t...

I have this in my sig: mycraft_sph_full.png 

And yet, is not obvious to you. Ok:

USING A CRAFT SOMEONE SHARED IS NOT CHEATING IN MY BOOK

 

For anyone interested, here is mine,. There is 38000 other craft in the same site and many more in The Spacecraft Exchange Subforum . And if you ask nicely we may try to design a new one together and have fun doing it.

 

 @MarsUltor I appreciate if you clarify the point you think I misinterpreted, make it stronger than the eventual snak. Arguing about what I said on the other hand, will get you nowhere, an I will not waste my time with it anymore.

 

1 hour ago, Vanamonde said:

Does anyone else have suggestions for OP

He already sent probes to Duna... maybe a manned lander catch his attention. Gossiper

 

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