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Using the cheat menu to fully unlock the tech tree in Career mode fora Science mode with money


bigyihsuan
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Title.

Who here uses the stuff mentioned in the title? Meaning using the cheat menu (CTRL-ALT-F12) to fully unlock the tech tree, so the game becomes a Science mode save with money and rep.

I can see the appeal: no need to go out and grind out science, and can just focus on getting cash to fuel whatever big projects you want.

However, for people like me, I use the tech tree as the main driving motivation for progressing through the game, as in "get contract to go for a Mun landing, but not enough tech to get the parts for a Mun landing, so more missions to get enough science for parts for a Mun landing" kind of cycle. But at that point, you'd might as well play Science mode instead, but then you lose money, rep, and facility upgrades. (and maybe Kerbal levels as well?)

What are your thoughts on this?

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I didn't really like it when I tried. That carrot on the stick of unlocking nodes is important for me, as it is for you.

I could see it being doable with a custom contract system that took it into account, along with a personal goal (base in every planet's SOI, for example, or land-and-return from every world. Or 100% relay coverage through the system) for a robotic grand tour with only the probe core's antenna)

But when you don't need to collect science there's so much you don't need to bring along with you, you really need to cut cash rewards or you may as well just play sandbox.

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I play career with default settings and fully unlocked the tech tree a long time ago.  I like the contracts as they keep me focused on what to do next and some of them are kinda fun to do anyway.

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9 hours ago, bigyihsuan said:

What are your thoughts on this?

I tend to go in the other direction and make it harder.  The finance system and the science system don't really interact in the stock game, and while reputation does influence both, I have never felt the need to pay special attention to it.  Of course, that's just a way of restating your point--if the science and finance systems were interdependent, then you wouldn't be able to cheat one out of existence and still have a meaningfully playable game.

My general goal is to try to force the science and finance systems to interact more, mainly by making science points tremendously more expensive so that I have to spend more money to acquire them (and even more to use them--I have the game set to require Funds to unlock the tech in the various nodes).

I mod a few things, such as the big ISRU converter, to work less efficiently (no self-powered LFO plants for me), or to die off, such as the RTGs which I mod to decay.  I use an extended tech tree that costs more to unlock, and also spreads out the technology so that each node unlocks less.  I also turn down the science rewards to the point that there isn't enough science in the solar system for me to unlock the entire tree without labs, asteroids, and contracts that award science outside of the fixed-value experiments on and around celestial bodies.  I make labs a good deal less efficient, but I also massively increase their data storage because the alternative is needing to revisit them every five minutes to top them off--I prefer to macromanage those sorts of things, not micromanage.

This approach generally forces a careful build-out, but it puts me in a position where I need to pick and choose what I am going to develop for missions farther afield.  The contract system, then, helps to guide and direct those missions--whether I go towards Moho or Eeloo is often determined by the contracts generator--rather than serve as a way to make some quick money to use in the thing that I really wanted to do all along.  The research choices are then informed by the contract destinations:  I can invest in power technology so that I can charge a battery out near Eeloo, but at the cost of being able to invest in more powerful engines, for example.  Or I can go the other way and use the basic solar panels at Moho, but not unless I have good enough engines and propellant tanks that I can actually stop there after I arrive.

I do make a couple of things 'easier':  I set the temperature and pressure sensors (and any other sensor that only generates a number without handling a material) to fully return transmitted science, because why would it somehow be better to recover the sensor that reads '173K' rather than just transmit the value?  However, to balance this, I also generally make it so that it takes multiple experiments to fully extract the available science points.  In other words, I'm not going to land in the Badlands, take out a thermometer, and assume that that is the Universal Badlands Temperature.  I'm going to take several measurements, which means either staying a while or making multiple trips.  There are exceptions:  I don't need to take multiple pressure measurements in high orbit, for example.  The overall idea is to make the science, research, and development sides have a little more to do with one another, and thus make the game a little more realistic without needing to go to the same extent as Realism Overhaul.

Then I can return the science that I gather and maybe unlock something that will ease the second trip.  If this all seems very tedious to you, well, that's probably because it is.  But it works for me.  I will say that I try to balance it so that I unlock everything before I've gone everywhere (that's where contracts and labs come into play) because it doesn't make sense to unlock that big, fancy engine only after you've proven that you don't need it and can do just as well with something inferior.  But I've never liked the idea of being able to unlock the whole tech tree before getting beyond Minmus, either.

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