Was totally smitten by Kerbal Space Program last weekend. Watched the GB quick look and immediately paid the 18 whatever dollars for it. Good for me, bad for Kerbopolis.

They should have a “# of Kerbals sacrificed for space exploration to date” death counter, or one that counts “Days since last horrific launch explosion”. Both are necessary because, apparently, Kerbals live in a society where every irresponsible idea and unscientific whim gets fast tracked. What if the rocket had like, giant plane wings, that’d be cool, right? We don’t have enough thrust, clearly our 10 stage, overly complicated and cumbersome rocket design is sound, add 50 more solid boosters to stage one through five. It’ll be fine.

Only one special rocket, in a youtube montage of 3 or 4 dozen failed rocket launches, actually escaped planet Kerbal’s gravity. But the damn thing ran out of gas half way to the moon, and is now spinning helplessly out in greater space. Its new orbit is a one-way ticket into the Sun, but don’t worry, the pilot won’t live that long. We haven’t told him yet. Ground control to Major Kermin. Drifting… falling… floating weightless…

If anything, I appreciate slightly more just how insane and precise actual space flight has to be. One wrong move and it’s Kobayashi Maru out there. Then, in a brief need to do better, I made the mistake of going to the forums, where the official language is math. Uncalculated from the hip manned space flight continues unabated.

It’s only in alpha, but there’s a lot of potential in this game, past watching things fail spectacularly, that probably only truly appeals to the kind of nerd like me that stays up to watch Curiosity land. There’s satisfaction in watching rocket stages go off without a hitch. I can only imagine what it’s like to sucessfully land a little guy on the moon (“Mun”) or farther…

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