Kerbal Space Program: Houston, We Have All The Problems

The Kerbal Space Center had decided to launch their first rocket at approximately 12 pm local time. The rocket, named the “Kerbal 7” and piloted by good ol’ Jebediah Kerman, is the pride of the Kerbal Space Program. The makers of the ship had their “complete, unwavering, full faith in the rocket” (Note: they decided that it would be best to not attend the launch as they all had “the flu”). The countdown commenced at 11 am that morning, and everything went smoothly… until launch, when the physics engine roared to life, decided that half of the rocket was unstable, and promptly blew up on the launch pad. The rocket, missing its first stage on account of *cough* building defects *cough*, immediately kicked in its still functional second stage, which launched the spacecraft up to 50,000 meters and allowed it to fly a ballistic trajectory with an apoapsis of 80,000 meters. Kerbal 7 did not have a parachute on the capsule because the engineers had not considered that the rocket might actually get off the launch pad, causing poor ol’ Jebediah to, umm…. “land” on the ground at 2,500 meters per second. The burning fuselage crashed on top of him and, upon later investigating the massive crater which had been created by a ludicrously large explosion, scientists found that Jebediah had just simply vanished into thin air….

Caution: SCIENCE!
Caution: SCIENCE!

Kerbal Space Program, created by Squad, is a work of art, with the ability to build anything and everything you could ever want. Have you ever wanted to send something into orbit? Well, now you can, without the prohibitive costs of the real world(it costs up to a million or two to just send a couple of pounds into orbit nowadays). Oh, you think it is too hard? Well, with multiple difficulty levels that you can customize, it will fit you perfectly.

Either something has gone wrong, or terribly, terribly right.
Either something has gone wrong, or terribly, terribly right.

The point in Career mode, with all of its difficulty levels, is to fulfill contracts that companies give you. They can range from “Fly up to 5000 Meters” to “Create a Mun (their word for moon) Base that can support 6 Kerbals, that has an antenna and laboratory areas.” You never know what you will get. It is exciting to fulfill the contracts because you get money and science to upgrade your stuff with! Sweet! You also can dock ships in orbit and explore other worlds, without having to leave the the warm, comfortable, safe environment that is your home.

The red planet.
The red planet, or as I like to call it, “The place where this guy probably dies.”

The game is hard at times, but those are the points that bring out your creative side. I had to create my own launch vehicle because the other stock ones would not lift the payloads I needed to lift into space. However, the one thing I have never managed to do myself is dock two craft together in orbit. I can get them to touch each other, and have both docking ports touch, but they do not dock (If you can tell me how to do that, please leave a comment below). Each person can have their own specialty in KSP, be it rocket design or executing tasks. No two people are good at the same thing, and it is especially evident in KSP.

Uh....yeah, we just need to...keep...flying? Yeah! That's it!
Uh….yeah, we just need to…keep…flying? Yeah! That’s it!

One other aspect of this game that is exceptional is the modding community. There are so many mods available, from mechjeb, which helps you control your craft, to FASA, which replicates all of the NASA spacecraft from the 60’s. There are mods for anything and everything that you can imagine, and you can specialize in the mods that suit your purposes.

Space can be so beauti...why is that light flashing?
Space can be so beauti…why is that light flashing?!?

KSP is one of those magical games that lets you control all aspects. You control which astronauts you hire, what rockets you build, where you will go, what contracts you will accept… The possibilities with this game are endless. It truly is the embodiement of one’s imagination, and few games have ever, have now or will ever have be able to claim that title. This game is well worth your time and money, and when you buy it you will be rewarded with the most interactive, adventurous, innovative playing experience out there.

I am a High School Student who, amid his scrambling to overcome the oppressive forces known as procrastination and AP Course Work, has come to love writing game reviews. If you want to ask me a question, suggest a game for me to review or simply want to talk, ping me at any of the sites I have linked here.

This article has 5 Comments

  1. You can’t get the docking ports to connect? Interesting. There are different size docking ports, so make sure that you are docking using two of the same sized ones. Once the ports are within a couple meters of each other a slight magnetic force should take over and pull them together. While this is happening, use the T key and R key to shut off SAS and RCS respectively. On the Nav Ball, there are two icons denoting whether or not SAS and RCS are active. Post a picture of the two crafts you are attempting to dock and perhaps what is wrong will become apparent to more experienced players. Great article!

  2. I did what you suggested…. AND IT WORKED! Thank you so much! I thought I would never be able to dock. Thank you for your comments!

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