Kerbal Space Program, the award-winning, indie space agency sim game from Squad, is launching its latest update, Kerbal Space Program: First Contract, as part of its active development cycle. This major release, numbered 0.24, is a substantial advancement in the game’s Career Mode, which challenges players to run a space agency. It is also the first time the game offers a 64-bit version for Windows via STEAM and the KSP STORE.
Players will now have the opportunity to take on Contracts, manage Funds, a new in-game currency that allows players to buy rocket and plane parts, and earn Reputation for their efforts. Players will take advantage of three new widgets on screen, Funds, Reputation and Science. Players aren’t charged for funds until their vessel launches and the total science amount is now displayed via the widget. Reputation is raised for completed contracts and bringing Kerbals back in one piece. Failing missions, or gasp, blowing them up lowers Reputation.
“First Contract is a massive step forward for Career Mode. Finally, we’re starting to paint a clear picture of our original vision for the complete thing.” creator and lead developer Felipe Falanghe said. “Although there is still a lot to add on future updates, the new Career features should help new players pick up the game in a much more structured manner. One of my favorite aspects, is how it’s added new challenges for even the most veteran players. We’ve found ourselves here, building contraptions we have never had the need to build before, and actually discovering totally new, fun ways to play the game.”
Contracts are offered based on a player’s Space Program’s reputation, which starts off at neutral. After an initial set of starter contracts, dynamically generated contracts are created in three levels of ‘prestige’, from Trivial to Exceptional ones. Reputation regulates the amount and level of offers that are available. If a player’s reputation is low, he or she will be offered trivial, low-profile contracts. However, if a player’s space agency is well-reputed, contracts to attempt increasingly ambitious things will be offered.
- Part Test: Perform a test of a part in a specific location, situation and within given flight parameters (when applicable).
- Collect Science: Return or transmit any scientific data from a specific location.
- Rescue Kerbal: Rescue a Kerbal who is stuck in orbit.
- Plant Flag: Plant the Agency's flag on the surface of a given location.
- Explore: Complete several exploration goals for an unreached location.
will be found in the new Mission Control
building, which was previously not an interactive part of the Kerbal Space Center. Players will enter Mission Control and have the option of choosing between available contracts.
Players will also find new engines, updated parts
and vessel recovery
, which means you can reclaim the value of landed parts and any resources they contain, in the update.
You can also check out the full changelog on this article from KSP Forums.
I'm very happy to announce that the Asteroid Redirect Mission patch for KSP is now officially released!
This is a very special update in many ways, not least of course is that it was made in collaboration with NASA, to make sure our Kerbal version of the Mission was not only true to its real-life counterpart, but that it was also fun, educational, and in keeping with KSP's style, free to be performed in any way you can think of. Want to re-enact the exact mission profile NASA is planning? Go for it. Want to send up enough rocket fuel to lift an office building and slam on the retrograde brakes? That's also an option. Want to not do any of those things and just use the Advanced Grabbing Unit to choose which Kerbals go and which stay? Erm... sure.
This has been, without question, the largest update we've ever done, not just in terms of development time, but most importantly in terms of the scope of the changes made. No other update has had so many different areas improved on at the same time. We usually focus on a single area to work on, but this time, we really felt the need to make a noticeable improvement in the overall playing experience, especially around flight planning and advanced deep-space missions.
So, Here are the highlights for this update:
Kerbin is no longer alone in its orbit. Nearby are countless objects that buzz in and out of its sphere of influence, some flying by harmlessly, others on impact trajectories. Ranging in size from just a few meters through 5 size classes up to gigantic objects weighing thousands of tons, these new objects should provide a new challenge for both new and veteran players. Each asteroid is procedurally generated, so no two are the same. Also, asteroids can have samples taken from them by EVAs, providing a constant source of valuable science data, right on the edge of Kerbin's SOI.
* Object Discovery and Tracking:
Before you set out after an asteroid, you first need to identify and track them using the Tracking and Discovery features on the Tracking Station Facility. Select one of the unknown objects spotted near Kerbin, and start tracking it actively to reveal more information about it. Also mind that untracked objects can be lost if they're left unobserved for too long.
* The Advanced Grabbing Unit (aka "The Claw")
As the name probably implies, this new part is the means by which asteroids can be captured to be redirected. Just arm the device, approach the target carefully, and the claw will do the rest. It's like a docking node, but without the need for a mate node on the other side. Better still, the AGU can be used to grab on to much more than just asteroids. In fact, it can pick up just about anything, even Kerbals.
* New SLS-inspired Size 3 parts:
We've added a host of new parts, featuring the largest engines and fuel tanks ever seen in KSP. These new parts were designed based on NASA's upcoming Space Launch System, and they pack a huge amount of rocket power.
* Completely Overhauled Part Joints:
We have completely re-done the way parts attach to one another, to allow for much greater flexibility and control over each joint. Joints are also more accurate and stable, as both jointed sides are now anchored at the attachment node (this wasn't possible before the Unity 4.3 update).
There's more. This update also features a host of small, and some not-so-small tweaks and improvements to usability, giving many features added a good while ago a much needed refurbishing, and adding a lot of the little things we never got a chance to add when we first implemented them.
Check this post for the complete changelog
* The ARM Patch (0.23.5) should not break backward-compatibility with previous saves. That said, however, do mind that we cannot account for mods, so don't expect them all to work perfectly. If you experience any problems, make sure you try a clean install of the game without any mods, and a new clean save as well.
* The ARM Patch is available just as any other update. You should be auto-updated next time you run the game. Just make sure you haven't disabled Steam's auto-update system for KSP.
Happy Launchings, and have fun!!