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What has KSP taught you?


michaelphoenix22
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No matter how good you get, no matter how skilled you are, no matter what precautions you take, you're still going to have difficult missions on occasion. Don't panic, and remember that safety margins are there for a reason.

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A basic grasp of orbital mechanics, the value of testing each piece of a design, thinking through a mission and planning for those things you know may happen, and those that may happen that you haven't experienced YET.....plus.....PATIENCE! Lots of patience!!!!

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It actually rekindled my love for space. I mean I've always loved space but there is something about Kerbal that has excelled it far higher than it previously was where it has me watching and reading things about NASA, documentaries and things like that. :)

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Spaceplanes are only really viable if you know the atmosphere of the planet you're going to.

Going to Space is not as easy as "Point upward, ignite rocket, turn, and you're in space."

Putting objects in orbit is hard.

Docking is even harder, even though many space movies make it look so easy.

Ion Engines, while they look so cool in space, are so impractical on anything big.

I can no longer enjoy space-based Sci-Fi movies because of all the problems. Projectile weapons in space have very low muzzle velocity (if any at all) and equal amounts of difficult recoil. You don't burn your engines the whole way to your target, then slam on the brakes when you're there. Landing on an unknown planet with no scanners to see what it's like is very very scary.

Landing on an unknown planet/moon is scary. Landing in the dark is even scarier. Running out of gas when you're landing in the dark on an unknown planet/moon is enough to cause panic attacks.

A rocket that makes it to space is a rocket. A rocket that explodes halfway to space is a really, really expensive firework.

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Ion Engines, while they look so cool in space, are so impractical on anything big.

i don't know, IRL they are quite practical as you can just turn them on and go have a nap. that approach is just a pain in the arse for a computer game.

which is pretty much what KSP has taught me; most space flight is just waiting. burn engines for 10 minutes, wait 3 months. there is a reason the hitch-hiker module includes a locker labelled "Games".

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I learned that if you are having a flawless mission, it's just to give you a false sense of security before the space kraken destroys your hopes and dreams.

But seriously, I learned a lot about physics and the reasoning behind why our real life space programs aren't as ambitious as some of us would like them to be. Many of the concepts that KSP forced me to learn would have bored me otherwise. It has given me a "practical application" to see how certain ideas and concepts might play out. It has also ruined most space based movies and games for me forever.

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Spaceplanes are only really viable if you know the atmosphere of the planet you're going to.

Going to Space is not as easy as "Point upward, ignite rocket, turn, and you're in space."

Putting objects in orbit is hard.

Docking is even harder, even though many space movies make it look so easy.

Ion Engines, while they look so cool in space, are so impractical on anything big.

In Kerbal:

1. True

2. It actually is. Moreover: areodynamics don't matter.

3. It's super-easy once you discover that there is no disadvantage in adding boosters on top of boosters on top of boosters

4. True. (That's why in real life computers dock most of the time, not humans)

5. Again: In Kerbal the rule of more boosters still works. Only here: it's more ion engines.

I can no longer enjoy space-based Sci-Fi movies because of all the problems. Projectile weapons in space have very low muzzle velocity (if any at all) and equal amounts of difficult recoil. You don't burn your engines the whole way to your target, then slam on the brakes when you're there. Landing on an unknown planet with no scanners to see what it's like is very very scary.

1. I still can. Even more when most of the sci-fi movies actually have something called areodynamics and ships with nose cones are not in a disadvantage.

2. lol what? What you just said makes no sense. Projectile weapons in space can have enormous velocities cause there is no air to slow down acceleration. Space-based rail gun is limited only by material strenght and energy you can provide. Gun on OPS-2 fired just fine and was as deadly as in real life if not more once you consider that heading of a space craft is much easier to predict that the one of airplane (there is no air to help you manuever, so agility of a space ship is limited to the power of it's RCS, and these are build for precision (docking) not avoiding AA fire).

3. Recoil can be compensated by the gun itself. There is no problem, really.

4. You can slam your breaks half way through assuming that your target is moving with 0m/s relative velocity to your starting point. Some of sci-fi movies show that just fine, eg. Avatar. But purely theoretical: breaking right before reaching a target might make sense if your target moves nearly as fast as your speed after accelerating through most of the journey and while you begun your trip - it was behind you.

5. Is it? I don't find anything scary in landing on empty rocks. Planets with life might be scary, but other than that: it's very calm.

Edited by Sky_walker
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2. lol what? What you just said makes no sense. Projectile weapons in space can have enormous velocities cause there is no air to slow down acceleration.

They can, but for artistic reasons, most space-based Hollywood projectile weapons fire projectiles that are often slower than real in-atmosphere projectiles. I think that's the point being stated.

3. Recoil can be compensated by the gun itself. There is no problem, really.

To every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. You might be able to recover/redirect the energy in the propellant that's left over when it's done its job, but the more massive projectile itself still got pushed off at some velocity, and there will be an equal push-back on the firing platform (minus gas recoil compensation). If you want to have space-based weaponry that isn't projected energy based and doesn't disturb the orbit of the launching platform, you'll either need to fire projectiles in both directions, or stick to self-propelled projectiles (rockets).

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