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Will we get to other stars?


lyndonguitar
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It's a tough question. The problem is that in sandbox mode, FTL would trivialize everything else; if you've got an engine capable of carrying you several parsecs in an instant, then what's the challenge in flying to Duna? Right now all we have is the sandbox, so until they add career mode AND make it the primary style of gameplay, there just isn't much room for things like FTL, any more than we'd get inertialess drives or mass drivers.

But imagine a career mode built around this sort of thing. You start off in the Kerbol system, with access to only low-tech parts (1.25m fuel tanks and engines, and small capsules), and each ship's total budget and part count are limited to some fixed totals. Every time you do something notable (land on a moon for the first time, dock in orbit, return resources to Kerbin, make an SSTO spaceplane), your per-ship budget increases, and new parts unlock. Do enough and you gain access to bigger and more modern capsules, 2.5m or 3.75m parts, ion engines, LV-Ns, and so on, which make it possible to accomplish more goals that were previously impossible. In that sort of environment, adding an FTL drive at the top tier could be seen as an endgame for the career mode, since it'd effectively put you in a pseudo-sandbox; ideally, completing your first FTL flight would generate a randomly set star system, with no two players' neighboring systems identical, giving you a personalized playground to try out fun designs in.

Did you read my posts?

You would need to work if you want a warp-drive, it's something you have to archieve and you don't have an infinite amount of them.

Maybe we could put in a feature where using a warp-drive for inter-planetary travelling would damage it, it should only be used for interstellar-space.

There are less particles per cubic meter in interstellar-space then inter-planetary, maybe that could be used as a reason?

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this may seem unrelated but the question of interstellar travel raises the question of how research is done in the game. if we were to suppose that FTL travel could exist in a fictional world that is so far very realistic then it would seem that there should be significant effort involved not just in building such an engine but in discovering how it works. I think its safe to assume that Kerbals have discovered that e=mc2, but there are still experiments going on today to confirm the implications of general relativity. kerbals could be busy doing things like that in campaign mode, that is launching satellites to detect and confirm the existence of predicted subatomic particles, gravity waves et cetera. (I personally would love to be able to launch a Kepler type mission to search for exoplanets, even if i couldn't take kerbals there.) Such experiments could lead up to something similar to what NASA is doing now, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White-Juday_Warp_Field_interferometer, testing the theoretical basis for the Alcubierre drive. If we entertain the notion that such a drive might be in the game, I would personally like to see it be extremely difficult to use. it should be capable of ripping your craft apart more easily than any rocket catastrophe you've seen. maybe you have to balance the symettry and mass of the craft against the output of this theoretical drive and operate it within certain parameters or it rips the ship to tiny bits. its should also be very easy to overshoot a distance or miss a vector. either way, I'm more excited about the science of getting there. if its a push-button sort of thing I'm out.

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It's a tough question. The problem is that in sandbox mode, FTL would trivialize everything else; if you've got an engine capable of carrying you several parsecs in an instant, then what's the challenge in flying to Duna? Right now all we have is the sandbox, so until they add career mode AND make it the primary style of gameplay, there just isn't much room for things like FTL, any more than we'd get inertialess drives or mass drivers.

Strawman argument. Who's to say an FTL system will work within a solar system OR be nearly as fast as you suggest.

Even in sandbox mode this can still be made challenging. Just for laughs let's assume the FTL drive component (which doesn't work within a gravity well and requires a 200 tonne fusion reactor to operate) alone weighs in a 400 tonnes and then tell me FTL sucks all the challenge out of the game.

Also, isn't the POINT of a space program is that space travel becomes EASIER the more experience you gain? Shouldn't flights to Duna and Jool eventually become trivial?

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It's a tough question. The problem is that in sandbox mode, FTL would trivialize everything else; if you've got an engine capable of carrying you several parsecs in an instant, then what's the challenge in flying to Duna? Right now all we have is the sandbox, so until they add career mode AND make it the primary style of gameplay, there just isn't much room for things like FTL, any more than we'd get inertialess drives or mass drivers.

But imagine a career mode built around this sort of thing. You start off in the Kerbol system, with access to only low-tech parts (1.25m fuel tanks and engines, and small capsules), and each ship's total budget and part count are limited to some fixed totals. Every time you do something notable (land on a moon for the first time, dock in orbit, return resources to Kerbin, make an SSTO spaceplane), your per-ship budget increases, and new parts unlock. Do enough and you gain access to bigger and more modern capsules, 2.5m or 3.75m parts, ion engines, LV-Ns, and so on, which make it possible to accomplish more goals that were previously impossible. In that sort of environment, adding an FTL drive at the top tier could be seen as an endgame for the career mode, since it'd effectively put you in a pseudo-sandbox; ideally, completing your first FTL flight would generate a randomly set star system, with no two players' neighboring systems identical, giving you a personalized playground to try out fun designs in.

As long as the endgame drives still require you to accelerate and guide the craft, and aren't just a point-click [warp to *] modes of travel then I'll be relatively ok with them.

I very much like your idea of having a finite, per ship budget in conjunction with a career bankroll and parts research. I've been worried about the impact of reusable craft on career mode, and a progressive level cap on craft design would be the only thing stopping us veterans from sprinting through the campaign after saving up for a large reusable launcher early on. If it was to include a cost and/or part count level cap it would also encourage the steady creation of new designs as you progress through your career, even if you have already developed your favourite configurations. It will also ease newer players into the design of larger, more complicated craft, as it will intuitively encourage design efficiency.

Food for thought Squad :)

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It's a tough question. The problem is that in sandbox mode, FTL would trivialize everything else; if you've got an engine capable of carrying you several parsecs in an instant, then what's the challenge in flying to Duna?

I think it's already been mentioned in this thread a couple of times that the plan outlined by the devs was that FTL would only work far away from any star's gravity well, so it would have no effect on travel between planets in the same system.

Simon Hibbs

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I'd like to see this. Especially if they also implement a way to colonize planets. Not in the current sense, where you just land some modules and that's it, but real colonies. There's been considerable discussion about different features that could be added to Kerbin's surface. Chief among them is cities, which I believe are planned. What I'd like to see is a way to launch a specific part, land it, activate it, and from that point, a city begins to grow. Slowly. Maybe you need to set up some mining rigs to feed it and bring in a certain number of kerbals to initialize it, but that's all details. The general concept is that you begin to spread kerbals out among the stars.... without it becoming KerbCity.

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Let's take Larry Niven's approach. At least in regards to his Ring World book series. All stars have a sort of event horizon. In the case of Earth (and yes I know KSP doesn't involve Earth) it starts just outside the Kuiper belt. Within this event horizon normal Newtonian physics applies. Outside of it normal Newtonian physics applies except in the case of the speed of light being the universal speed limit.

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Let's take Larry Niven's approach. At least in regards to his Ring World book series. All stars have a sort of event horizon. In the case of Earth (and yes I know KSP doesn't involve Earth) it starts just outside the Kuiper belt. Within this event horizon normal Newtonian physics applies. Outside of it normal Newtonian physics applies except in the case of the speed of light being the universal speed limit.

I don't think the event horizon that affects hyperdrive in Known Space has anything to do with differences in the laws of physics in Einsteinian space (IIRC that's the term Niven uses for 'normal' space), it's just that the local curvature of space (gravity field) has to be very low to be able to make the shift to hyperspace.

But yes, Niven's stories were the first thing I thought of when I heard this may be how it will work. He's easily my favourite SF author, and it's not even close.

Simon Hibbs

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  • 1 month later...

I honestly would just like to see a few more cool gas giants with their own moons. Especially one with rings. Maybe some asteroids, and an asteroid belt. Oh and comets. Then refine the engine to have a working campaign with a tech tree and stuff. Maybe able to set up bases where you can build launch pads from there as well would be neat.

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I think the 'wormhole' idea (or some form of 'jumpgate') would be the easiest. Doing interstellar burns would be exceedingly long and require exorbitant dV, not to mention waiting decades to arrive and needing to add a galactic SOI. I don't know how the Kerbol system is defined and if it's easy for modders to modify, but if it is people could easily add other systems (procedural or not) without massive difficulty, I expect.

It'd be fun to see the Earth system (hardmode since the dV's are so much higher?) or fictitous ones, though honestly I'd most enjoy exploring procedural ones, especially if a concept of discovery/exploration gets implemented.

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I wouldn't mind a few stars at some stationary but ridiculous distance to be honest. They don't even need to add engines to reach them or planets to visit. Just something that is nigh unreachable with the available tech. I'd be very interested in seeing what people come up with just to go there.

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There are practical limitations on what 5 dudes, no budget, and chosen engine can achieve with this game.

I think technical limitations on the engine will make different solar systems impossible, adding them to the game will go far beyond the scope of what 5 people can code in an time frame that would allow them to make money from the game.

This game is almost complete. Need trimming and polishing for sure, but the faster it is put on the market, the faster you will get Kerbal II with a better engine, more people to work on it and better features.

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what about simple multiple solar systems? like you go to the tracking center and select kerbol star. and you're in the kerbol system. then you could select Cream soda star and youre in a star system that might have a lot of cream soda on its planets.

perhaps even a terran system and you're in a solar system that mimics ours.... although we'd need new rocket parts i'd imagine.

so we could have multiple star systems with multiple configurations but no need to code in interstellar travel.

I really like this idea. The Kerbals could be the consistency across all of the different, unconnected systems.

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I would rather the dev's focus on making the current planets/moons more interesting to explore, give us something to do other than run around and plant flags, give planets better scenery, or perhaps make atmospheric flight and controls more realistic/user friendly.

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Just my two cents: Who says we have to simulate the entire galaxy? We may only want to simulate a small local cluster of a dozen or less stars. If we want to have the whole galaxy, though, I thought I heard somewhere about procedurally generated most star systems, but I don't know. I am just extremely pleased that this game exists.

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Personally I don't see why people are against having multiple star systems. It's not like you're forced to go to them, it just means the people who do want to go there can.

I don't understand that either as it just adds more content to the game(and would be pretty epic). It's also not out of the realm of possibilities at least in campaign mode if implemented correctly through your space programs research, and raw materials found from mining when implemented. As others have stated earlier in the thread just add a couple of new parts that only work for interstellar travel and only work when at a very high speed leaving the current system to keep current rocket designs viable.

Edited by MaGicBush
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I did rather see development effort go into improving the current solar system than add another system that is going to be basically "more of the same" with a slight different flavour. I feel that people wanting a new system to explore are just reacting to the lack of variety our current system has.

But if they do add a new star system, please no FTL or other magical engine, just because now a warp drive doesn't need to eat Jupiter in the process doesn't make it feasible. A wormhole seems like a good compromise though.

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At this point the Frameshift and Alcubierre drives I'm working on have no significant purpose besides getting to Jool in under a month, so I say...

Why not?

Even if the developers add it as an optional expansion, I want more star systems! Simple-ish way to do it: make it semi-procedural, or have it randomly generated using a noise generator, then use a specific seed to make it consistent across all save files (and if people want a random galaxy, have an option for that when creating a new save file, complete with custom seed input). Seriously, more solar systems = more content = more re-playability, adding value to the game! :D

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People are complaining about having a half-arsed galaxy if other systems are added. My question is how does a single solar system by itself in a lone void make any sense?

By the same logic you could say "How does only having one galaxy alone in the void make sense" or "how does a universe with no massive nebulas make sense". They're there, they're just beyond your reach in the game. The idea of there not being any other stars is only ever going to practically be an issue if the devs program a practical means of interstellar travel in the first place. Without it, there is basically no way you can get far enough out that you would ever reach another star before your computer crashes or sets on fire from running the game nonstop for several weeks.

And the "half-arsed" factor is one of my biggest problems. The whole game is built around a semirealistic solar system space program. Adding even a single other star, it's planets and moons, and all the technology to get there (and presumably set up a brand new space program, as you would need to) would probably take about as much time and effort as the entire game has so far, unless of course, they just want to half-arse interstellar travel, make it simple, and make colonising a new system and setting up a new space centre including all the infrastructure and more sophisticated resource gathering and part construction a really basic procedure as well.

And to me, at least, it's not worth it. The time they will work on this game is finite, I'd rather see that time put into many other things within the single system, including but not limited to - the currently planned resource system, the expansion of the existing solar system with asteroids and more gas giants and distant planets or dwarf planets, space habitat and planetary base construction, adding more detail to the planets, scientific study that actually means something in-game, etc.

Edited by Kerbface
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Although I'm not with this idea of Traveling to different Solar Systems, I think the Number 1 Priority needs to be to finish off our own first.

I have been thinking though, and seeing though KSP tries to Relate to our own Solar System as much as they can and still keep it within the "Fun Kerbal Action" a possible way around this [which some people will hate, others might not] is...

I'm sure many have heard of this Brown Dwarf Star that has some Orbital Bodies that comes around once every 360000 or what ever years it is.. Well to keep the people who want a new Solar System happy, aswell as keeping the people who don't want Interstellar Travel to be in KSP, this might be a viable option to implement at a very later date. As this Mythical Solar System has no proof of it's existence apart from what Archeologists have found from the Ancient Sumerians, then we will not see it on our Map View in KSP until it enters. Instead, when it approaches, it will be well within our Reach to fly to using the current Technology we already have in the Game.

People will have the Option to Ignore it and just admire it's passing, or go build some Satelites, Bases, Stations on it. However this would be a 1 way trip. Once it leaves our Solar System then any Kerbals left in it's Orbits will have to cope themseves, making their own Fuel, Parts ect until it's next passing.

I understand this can be a very touchy Subject to most, so please keep it clean and understand that KSP is a GAME, and there is nothing wrong with imagination and creation. Although I don't believe it's existence, I am not ignorant of the possibilities that could be out there that we have yet to unveil.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I am all for another solar systems, but it would make most commuters slow. why, instead of even a small cluster of stars, just a binary system (2 stars orbiting each other).

(slightly off topic but... what about a small black hole. it might be a silly idea :):D )

Edited by mrj44hm
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