Jump to content

The Ultimate Challenge Continued Again


Recommended Posts


I'm not sure if this is the right place for this, but here goes nothing.

I was working on my career game yesterday for my fan-fiction project when I checked into mission control, and saw a contract offer that stunned me.  It's a challenge so huge it's given me an opportunity to totally change my story plot and add a whole new section.

I've searched everywhere in the challenge section, and I'm not finding this one. 
If it's out there, and I'm necro-ing an old challenge, then I apologize and ask this be taken down, OK?
It's called the Ultimate Challenge, and the rules are simple:

Visit all 14 bodies in the Kerbin solar system in one ship and return home to tell the tale. 




I looked at it... then looked again, closed my eyes, held my breath, and hit accept..... 

So here's the deal.  According to the forum rules, I can't really issue this as an official challenge unless I do it, or at least make a really good attempt at it, first.  Which is what I'm going to do.  It's probably the hardest thing I can think of doing in the game... and a marvelous opportunity to exploit for my fan-fiction story.
How can I say no???
Oh, and because I'm a sadist, I'm doing it stock.

If I can do this, I'll make it an official challenge, and make a badge and all that. 
Unless someone else has already done it and wants to take over.
Which makes me wonder, has anyone done this?  Has anyone attempted it?
Am I bringing up an old challenge I just can't find?

Comments?  Ideas???  Or perhaps just some insane laughter at the thought???

Link to the original Ultimate Challenge thread by Just Jim

Link to the first continuation thread by HoloYolo

Link to the second continuation thread by IncongruousGoat

This is the fourth version of the Ultimate Challenge, a challenge created by Just Jim. The goal is to complete a grand tour of the Kerbol system, landing on every planet and moon in one mission and returning to Kerbin alive.

1. Mods are allowed, but only mods that are closely balanced to stock parts, like the Near Future mods. Additionally, life support mods like Kerbalism are allowed for additional challenge. If you're unsure if a mod is allowed, ask.
2. No cheating (debug menu, KAL overclock, kraken drives, etc.) for obvious reasons. You can use the debug menu to test designs, but it is not allowed in the final mission.
3. Every landing must have at least one kerbal present. You can have as many or as few kerbals as you want, as long as there is at least one.
4. Planet packs are allowed as long as the stock system is left alone.
5. LKO assembly is allowed and encouraged, however once any part of the mission leaves LKO you can not launch any more vessels to assist your craft. Additionally, you can only have one active vessel when leaving LKO (your ship must be one giant ship, not a collection of small ships leaving at similar times). The only exception is launching a crew vehicle at the end of the mission to retrieve your kerbals.
6. The rules are flexible and subject to change. If you're trying to do something that might bend the rules, ask me.

When submitting an attempt, include a list of mods, version, and any DLCs installed. Additionally, provide a video or screenshot album showing your mission.

Completing the challenge will grant you the official challenge badge, as well as a spot in the Ultimate Challenge Hall of Fame.

Official challenge badge for your signature:

Ultimate Challenge Hall of Fame:

@18Watt 1.12/Stock+DLC - Single launch mothership with ISRU and a few landers. Creatively used modules for the main lander for Moho and Tylo instead of a completely separate lander.  Link

@king of nowhere 1.12/Kerbalism/OPM/Near Future Electrical - A third grand tour using Kerbalism spanning 6 real life months and 324 in-game years. Radiation, stress, part failures, and KSP weirdness resulted in a very close mission that nearly failed several times. Link


Edited by Stamp20
Hall of Fame entry.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Great to see this challenge is still going!  It's definitely something on my KSP 1 bucket list to do but i have a few others things to master first like learning to return from Eve (only place I've never come back from successfully).  So it may be a few weeks before I start this.

Hope you get some submissions soon

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...

Well, I'm on my way.  I launched the whole show in a single launch.  My plan was to land two Kerbals on each CB.

Of course I forgot to actually put two Kerbals in the lander for the first stop, Mun.  I could have returned to the surface with a second Kerbal in the lander, but didn't bother.  

After Mun I stopped at Minmus for a landing, and refueled while there.  Next I hit Eve and Gilly.  Glad to get Eve out of the way, that was one of the landings and returns to orbit I was concerned about.

I'm currently in orbit of Moho, with what appears to be plenty of fuel to get back to Eve to rendezvous with the mothership, which is still parked in orbit of Gilly.  I say appears to have plenty of fuel because Moho has defeated me on several occasions.  

Nothing written in stone, but at this point my plan is to work outwards.  After rendezvousing with the mothership at Gilly I'll hit Duna/Ike, Dres, Jool, and finally Eeloo.  My ship design requires me to reconfigure it multiple times by moving modules and re-docking them in different orders for different portions of the mission.  So far this has worked fairly well.

When I'm done I'll post plenty of screenshots.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just a quick update:  I'm almost done.  I completed Moho, then went on to Duna, Ike, Dres, Laythe, Vall, Bop, and Tylo.  

I just need to get to Pol and Eeloo, then get home.  The ship is holding up fairly well, so I don't anticipate any serious problems.

I had to do multiple landing attempts at Laythe with my spaceplane, until I realized I was trying to land with the parking brake set.  I needed the parking brake set for the Eve lander (long story), then forgot to take it off after Eve.

Aside from forgetting to put two Kerbals in the lander at Mun, I've taken at least two Kerbals to every other body so far.  

It's late, I'm too tired to even go land on Pol.  Hopefully in the next week I'll find time to finish up.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ultimate Challenge Complete!

I completed the challenge!  I'll post a link to my mission reports thread.  The mission is detailed in the two most recent entries.

I'm playing 100% stock (with the BG and MH expansions).  I launched the entire mission in a single launch, and took two Kerbals to the surface of every CB.  Except for Mun, where I forgot to actually put two Kerbals in the lander can.  The order I took was Mun, Minmus, Eve, Gilly, Moho, Duna, Ike, Dres, Laythe, Vall, Bop, Tylo, Pol, Eeloo, and back home.  The basic components of the mission were:

  • Lander.  The 2-Kerb Lander visited the surface of every CB, except for Eve and Laythe.
  • Tylo Module.  The Tylo module was added to the Lander to help get to the surface of Tylo.
  • Eve Lander.  Dedicated only for Eve.  I saved the remains of the Eve module and used it back at Kerbin.
  • Laythe Plane.  A small 2-Kerb spaceplane used only at Laythe.
  • Ion Tug.  I used the Ion Tug to get the Lander to Moho and back (to Gilly..)
  • Mothership.  The Mothership is enormous, and has ISRU capabilities.  

Here's a shot showing most of the components.  The Laythe plane is fairly obvious.  Just left of the plane is the Ion Tug.  The Tylo Module and Lander are also visible below the Ion Tug.  The big contraption with orange tanks is the Eve Lander.  Once the Eve Lander is gone, I'll move the heavy Tylo Module to the center of the ship for better balance.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

I finally completed my extended grand tour

Kerbalism + OPM + near future electrics (needed nuclear plants to get energy for my massive ship far from the sun)

Additional challenges: bring a large crew, have the mothership orbit every planet, send a spaceplane to skim the atmosphere of all gas giants, include an asteroid and a comet in the tour.

took me 6 real life months and 324 game years to finish

Edited by king of nowhere
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@king of nowhere Congratulations on your third Kerbalism grand tour! I've been following the mission report for a while, and it was an incredible journey.

On 12/24/2021 at 8:05 AM, king of nowhere said:

I am seriously considering downloading some hardcore planet pack and unleash A'Tuin (a just slightly improved version) for a grand tour of that too.

You should try Alternis Kerbol mainly for Tylo, its gravity is increased to 4g and it has a very short but thick atmosphere.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This thread is quite old. Please consider starting a new thread rather than reviving this one.

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...