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Ideas for a health-centered Life Support mod


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I've been playing with Kerbalism for a while and I can officially say it's my favorite Life Support mod. With the unconfusing layout, once you get the hang of it, you can easily make your missions feel so much more lifelike. 

But I recently got inspired to make one of my own after an unfortunate Mars mission. After my Mars lander exploded into about a million tiny little pieces, Artemis Kerman waited above in the Orbital module. As she was alone, she was consuming less than three kerbals would, so that was alright. The big issue, though, is that I had failed to bring extra Nitrogen and thus I didn't have enough to keep my pod pressurized longer than 1 and a half years (which sucks since I have to wait 405 days until my transfer window opens).

So this got me thinking. Well, I have PLENTY of O2 left, so why can't I just use more O2 for pressurization. While I know realistically this isn't exactly the best idea, but come on. This is a game about green men.

I want to make a mod similar to Kerbalism that employs the ability to change:

  • Pressurized Capsule Gas Concentration (How much O2, N2, or CO2)
  • How pressurized the capsule is (Instead of 1atm, why not pressure the capsule lower in order to preserve resources?)
  • Caloric intake of Kerbals (In fact, kerbals now have a daily caloric intake they need to meet in order to maintain certain health levels. Using too little calories may cause a kerbal to become underweight, while the opposite may cause a kerbal to GAIN weight. A kerbal who has gained weight LITERALLY weighs more, so if a kerbal gains weight during a transfer and then hops in a lander, the lander might have more troubles with weight than you originally thought. Also, this way you can stretch your food supplies in case of emergencies).
  • Sicknesses. So far there aren't (that I'm aware of) any life support mods that actually contain any actual 'health' requirements for Kerbals. You can change cleanliness settings, such as choosing to launch with a super-steralized pod or choosing to launch without cleaning the pod. You can also choose to quarantine a Kerbal after visiting space/another planet in case they come down with a space sickness (inspired by the actual events of Apollo 11). Kerbals can also get radiation sickness in orbit, and old kerbals with a lot of time receiving those lovely ionizing rays could get cancer (Kancer)! This incentivizes a large pool of astronauts instead of having a choice number of astronauts that do all your missions.
  • A fully fledged kerbal physical health system. Tired of kerbals bouncing on the ground and getting off scot free? What about possible mishaps in zero-g (possibly by Kerbals with more stupidity)? Now, kerbals can break limbs, get concussions, and require medical assitance. I could even add a fourth kerbal type, medic, who can repair broken kerbals in case of injury. But this also means Kerbals don't die instantly in some cases. Imagine a kerbal breaking a limb while on the moon, and begins suffering internal bleeding. You have a timer before the kerbal bleeds out and dies (and a medic could help elongate that time), and you need to get them back to Kerbin before the timer runs out or the kerbal is dead forever (or in the case of the veterans, if one insists, dies for a little while). And remember how I said mishaps in zero g? Well, what if, based on the kerbals stupidity level, accidental injuries could happen randomly while in orbit?
  • Kerbals aren't all perfect. Now, when you hire Kerbals, you can see what pre-existing conditions they have that might effect their strengths and weaknesses. What if a kerbal is sickle-celled? Well, they might be less resistant to low-oxygen environments. What if you choose a kerbal with osteoporosis? Well, they might have bone density issues that could be exacerbated by long stays in orbit. And this also means a kerbal can GAIN a condition. Spent too much time in orbit? They might come down with a bone density issue, or other health problem that effects resource consumption, frequency of health issues, tolerance to g's, you name it! This doesn't mean all conditions are bad though! You could get a kerbal with strong G tolerance, or a kerbal with low-oxygen resilience. You could get a loner kerbal, who PREFERS to be on a mission alone, and doesn't need connection with home to stay sane (which is an idea from Kerbalism). What if you choose a kerbal that's claustrophobic? Well, they might be prone to breakdowns in long missions in cramped ships.

Realistically, this all seems simple enough to code to me. A lot of it just effects resource consumption.

I'm going to put this as a disclaimer, I AM NOT PROMISING THAT I WILL MAKE ANY MOD.

I'm simply interested in trying to learn and pursue. I have no real modding experience and am just learning.

I'm also making this to see how big the interest may be for a mod like this. I can see that this may not be the mod for everyone (let's face it, life support is a huge obstacle most of the time). However, some of the most fun I've ever had in this game has been using Kerbalism and running test after test to make sure a mission will go successfully. I'm sure a lot of people would agree with me.

The real meat of the mod would be in setting up configs for external mods. I know that Tantares, Bluedog, SSTU, Space Station Tech, and other mods would be fundamental for making configs for. However, I pledge that if I do make this mod, I will make in-depth VIDEOS on setting up configs for your own mods. I know the hardest part of modding can sometimes be figuring out how the heck a mod even works in the first place, so providing adequate wiki and tutorials is a goal of mine if this project gets a lot of love.

I've said it a couple times, but this mod is heavily inspired by Sir Mortimer's Kerbalism. Because of this, the mod is planned to be similar to how Kerbalism works (especially in the resources). The mod will have:

  • Oxygen
  • Food
  • Water
  • Nitrogen
  • Solid Waste
  • Gaseous Waste
  • Medical Supplies (which might even be divided into two different resources, pharmaceuticals and first aid, or left as one resource that can heal all)

Other things that are monitored in the mod are:

  • Stress (Happiness coupled with Hab size and Comfort, all hinging on a Kerbals condition)
  • Heat (Much like how the Kerbalism system works, needing life support systems to keep a kerbal cool)
  • Radiation (almost identical to how Kerbalism works, as I think Kerbalism's radiation system is unbeatable)
  • Sickness (Kerbals get sick and this can effect resource use/life expectancy. Like I said before, Cancer might be a thing Kerbals can be diagnosed with).
  • Physical Health (everything from broken bones to anaemia to a kerbals bodyweight)
  • Retirement (Some kerbals might choose to retire if their health becomes too extreme. This would be up to user preference, though)

And other things that aren't related to Kerbals but important to me, since they were in Kerbalism:

  • Engine quality (# of ignitions, possibility of failure [WHICH CAN ALL BE CHANGED BASED ON  PREFERENCE])
  • Part quality (how long a part will last, I plan on making this much more lenient than Kerbalism, and also make it a little more in-depth with levels of failure, specific function failure, etc.)
  • Science time (originally why I got Kerbalism. When science can be ran over time, and continue to be run in the background, I almost cried. So much more fun than the stock system. I also plan to make this a little more friendly than the Kerbalism system, allowing science definitions to be seen [and a possibilty to add more science def's based on how much research you've done in a certain biome])

This mod would be designed to hinge on Probability. There's a chance that a Medic causes a health condition to get worse; there's a chance a kerbal bonks their head in their space station; there's a chance that an oxygen tank can explode and we could lose some of our oxygen supply (I'm looking at you, Apollo 13). By adding chance, but not complete randomness, I believe the mod can get us closer to a realistic space simulator that's still fun to use!

I WOULD LOVE SOME POINTERS. If you have an idea of how something can be implemented, please tell me! I am open to ideas and I am open to letting someone else take over this project if they feel so inclined. I am also open to working with more experienced mod makers to program this and to have my vision fully realized.

What do you guys think?

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@Fundati

I'm not sure of your coding experience.  I don't, but I'm handy at sorting through config files so I've made mods that way.

I wonder if you have a lot of coding experience, then helping with kerbalism 4.0 development rather than starting from scratch.  If you have little experience, this is a great place to learn, or if you are like me then create your own profile to suit.

Some of the things you mentioned i agree with, and so created Kerbalism Simplex,  less reources basically. But not having to worry about nitrogen was important to me.

Peace.

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I agree with @theJesuit . A lot of your idea, @Fundati can be rolled in as new features in Kerbalism 4.0, and I've seen a recent med bay system crop up in it. I don't use Kerbalism so I don't know if it has expanded...if it's even still around.

There is another mod, Kerbal Health, which models the ability to catch and spread viral diseases, require downtime after a mission, do maintenance (such as exercise) to resist atrophy conditions while in space for lengthy periods, and develop random conditions (accidents maybe, mental issues, and decay faster or slower) depending on random personality quirks and other random physical stats. Kerbal Health is actually compatible with Kerbalism so check it out.

 

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On 1/10/2021 at 1:12 AM, Fundati said:

AM NOT PROMISING THAT I WILL MAKE ANY MOD.

This seems like a VERY ambitious mod, so if you make an attempt, kudos to you. It may be better if you made a kerbalism expansion (adding onto existing features instead of creating them all over again.) That way you could also tap into the Kerbalism UI.

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On 1/14/2021 at 6:29 AM, JadeOfMaar said:

I agree with @theJesuit . A lot of your idea, @Fundati can be rolled in as new features in Kerbalism 4.0, and I've seen a recent med bay system crop up in it. I don't use Kerbalism so I don't know if it has expanded...if it's even still around.

There is another mod, Kerbal Health, which models the ability to catch and spread viral diseases, require downtime after a mission, do maintenance (such as exercise) to resist atrophy conditions while in space for lengthy periods, and develop random conditions (accidents maybe, mental issues, and decay faster or slower) depending on random personality quirks and other random physical stats. Kerbal Health is actually compatible with Kerbalism so check it out.

 

I've seen Kerbal Health mod as well. I haven't looked at the way it works yet but I wonder if I could maybe get it and Kerbalism to work together. Like @Spaceman.Spiffsaid, I could probably look at making this mod an expansion to Kerbalism rather than its own thing.

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