Saturday, August 18, 2012

Shoot the Mün

Kerbin's best and brightest - Bill, Jeb, and Bob
I'm not really sure what to make of Kerbal Space Program (from here on out abbreviated as KSP).  On one hand it feels like Lunar Lander (also known as Moonlander) on steroids, but on the other hand it could be the first step in a whole new kind of game genre.

On the surface KSP gives the impression of being an aerospace flight-sim with some cool customization options.  But thinking on the potential of this game, I find my mind conjuring up a number of unique possibilities.  All the cool mods people have made aside, there are a lot of ways the developers of this game could go.  Sure you could head down the well trodden path of flash game such as Toss the Turtle and Learn to Fly, in which you achieve certain milestones in exchange for additional funding.  That would be a welcome addition in that it would provide goals for gamers who like having more than a wide open sandbox.  Then you could add an obligatory tech tree to ward off the boredom that comes with familiarity.  However, lets run with the concept a little bit further.  How about some gameplay elements that lead to more than just planting a flag and bragging rights?  Say for example discovering primitive other world lifeforms, or salvaging mysterious artifacts from an extinct race of spacefarers, or even a multiplayer element complete with rival Kerbin nations engaged in a space race.

The inclusion of docking will undoubtedly be a welcome addition so that fans of KSP can finally build space stations and dedicated spacecraft.  Again though lets take the concept up a notch and including a randomized solar system for players to explore.  Balls of ice, rock and gas are great, but how about comets, or rogue planets? Asteroid mining perhaps?  If you want some action why not include an exosolar invasion similar to sieges in Dwarf Fortress complete with kinetic weapon toting xenophobic aliens?  Well...that might be taking things a bit too far from the designer's original vision, but the ideas I've suggested here are only scratching the surface of what could be.  At the very least I look forward to seeing what challenges lie ahead for our intrepid Kerbonauts.

No comments:

Post a Comment