If the game will look a third as well as on the trailer visualization, I'll buy it without thinking (who am I lying to, I'll buy it anyway). One thing though: I hope the modding capability and freedom won't be diminished.
If KSP is a great game by itself, mods make it a literal order of magnitude better - a huge amount of solid fan work was done to expand every imaginable aspect of KSP. And I mean it: among many things, mods give you many more realistic and unrealistic building blocks, life support management, communication networks including speed of light delay, trajectory planning, UI/UX improvements, graphics improvements, orbital assembly, working space telescopes, realistic aerodynamics model (including supersonic physics), n-body simulation and non-symmetric gravity fields,... I don't think there's another game where so much of such highly skilled effort was spent for free to make it deeper.
I really hope they won't do anything that would make this depth of modding impossible.
I want to agree with everything said here, and add that the KSP mod ecosystem is no joke. The few things mentioned here barely scratch the surface.
As a point of comparison: I'm aware of and long involved with the Minecraft community, and it is huge and excellent. While the total amount of mod material is likely greater for Minecraft compared to KSP, I'm comfortable saying that the mods in KSP are deeper and wider in scope.
Did it ever get somewhat accepted officially?
Makes it easier for streamers to play a modpack and people play it as well.
On a more serious note, I wonder how hard it would be to introduce even semi-realistic Newtonian physics to a voxel-based game world.
The end of the KSP2 trailers says "Special thanks to Shaun Esau #buildflydream", which is for that video.
It explicitly is an homage.
But adding kOS and trying to script my way to doing the same things is honestly the coolest thing I've ever seen in a game. It went from "fairly easy" to "excruciatingly difficult in the most fulfilling way imaginable".
11/10, will play again.
There was a video posted alongside with a lot of development interviews and one of them was very specific about mentioning they were creating a platform and they wanted to expose the framework they use to the community. Hopefully not just lip service but as far as signalling goes it was important enough for them to mention.
- KSP devs are or were treated poorly by their employer (low pay, no compensation for the success of the game)
- apparently the program collected a lot of data (I can't remember what exactly) about its users and the machines it was running on, to the point where even non-privacy minded people were calling it spyware
Does anyone know anything about this? Afaik discussion about these issues just kinda stopped after a while but we never got a conclusive answer to these points.
KSP2 is sort of a Battlefield 5 type game, where somebody still owns the IP but the original team that built the engine/brought the magic is gone. It might be good, who knows.
In my opinion I'm a little skeptical about KSP2 as the base KSP1 game was so moddable that I can't imagine what they would add to KSP 2 that isn't in the base game through mods already. But maybe it will be even better than the first.
Sure if you ignore the whole once Squad realized they had a cash cow they treated the developers like shit until they all left.
Companies investing in skill sets generally try to keep their cash cow men around.
Sure, but it probably makes sense to first have a reasonable, flexible, non-draconian invention assignment agreement in place—even if you don't think the side project will be worth anything.
ownership transfer clauses. some are in the fine print, some are directly in the standard contracts i.e. Italy has these in the C.C.N.L., no way to avoid them, so you can't cash in a side project, you need first to severe your employment contract.
however I'm still pissed at how they treated modding and their community, killing a lot of promising endeavours by declaring then redundant with the project roadmap, including resources and base building and goddamn multiplayer, sapping a lot of the momentum under the modders but ultimately undelivered on their commitments. mods picked up steam after it was clear some of these things were going nowhere, but the damage at that point was done.
I don’t speak for “most” games though. More games are made by small teams than large ones. For indie and mobile games, the creators/devs might be only getting royalties, and no salary.
Anyway, “insane” is a pretty strong word considering profit sharing is super common in all kinds of industries. Some people and some companies really do try to share a little bit of the wealth and reward and retain talented employees, not all company owners are out to keep every cent for themselves.
Being paid a wage and also expecting royalties is wanting to have your cake and eat it too. Generally when an artist (or creator of any sort) is paid royalties, it's in lieu of wages, so you're also shouldering risk if the project fails.
> Being paid a wage and also expecting royalties is wanting to have your cake and eat it too.
Expecting royalties or bonuses is generally a bad idea in the “don’t count your chickens before they hatch” sort of way. I saw people spend money they didn’t have, and then get smaller bonuses than they counted on. Oops.
Being offered a bonus by your employer after six months of 80 hours/week crunch because the game sold well is not the same thing as either expecting royalties, nor having+eating cake.
> Generally when an artist (or creator of any sort) is paid royalties, it’s in lieu of wages, so you’re also shouldering risk if the project fails.
Why do you think this? Lots of people are paid both wages and royalties and/or bonuses. I have no idea how often it’s royalties-only, I’m curious why you claim it’s “generally”. I have only seen the mix kind in my experience, never royalties-only payment in lieu of wages. FWIW, my experience includes six different companies and maybe roughly about a thousand people being paid sales based bonuses on top of wages.
Downside would be the devs OWING money back to the company.
Nor do I understand how owing money back to an employer is a realistic scenario. I’ve never heard of that happening. Maybe it happens in weird indie or friend group startups for various reasons. Are you suggesting this happens with any real frequency to employees at established companies?
Aside from that I also think that this isn't good. Everyone involved should be compensated for the success of the product they created.
I mean steering the company to invest in projects that are more likely to succeed, that's just the job of upper management IMO.
Of course it doesn't work like that, unfortunately.
These devs did not.
You cannot take a salary and no equity and then complain when the business does well and you don't get a share in the profits.
He made an absolute shit deal, the kind that should probably be illegal or at the very least strongly discouraged through proper education. His employer’s actions were unethical.
What do you mean by this? AFAIK, Dice is still making Battlefield.
The original Battlefield came out in 2002.
Everything I read about Squad makes me really not want to support anything they do, but KSP is one of the coolest games in recent history. It's a real shame the original devs didn't stay in control.
An open source engine, similar to OpenTTD, OpenRCT2, OpenMW, etc sure would be nice though.
We should totally create a FOSS KSP, say Kernux:KSP == Linux:Unix
I don't remember ever seeing any evidence for spying beyond policy discussion and would be surprised if there is anything beyond common telemetry.
(I mean, yes, that's of course bad, but it seems like a relevant distinction whether it's uniquely bad or just a non-noteworthy participant in a bad ecosystem.)
The most interesting part of the log:
[ERR 10:20:15.181] [SteamManager]: SteamAPI_Init() failed. Refer to Valve's documentation or the comment above this line for more information.
[EXC 10:20:15.185] InvalidOperationException: Steamworks is not initialized.
Steamworks.SteamApps.GetAppInstallDir (AppId_t appID, System.String& pchFolder, UInt32 cchFolderBufferSize)
[LOG 10:20:15.218] Loading data opt-out preferences from PlayerPrefs
[LOG 10:20:15.244] Requesting data opt-out preferences from https://data-optout-service.uca.cloud.unity3d.com/[stack of unique parameters]
Unfortunately, it seems like essentially all games these days have at least basic phone home telemetry, even the DRM free stuff that still works if it can't connect. The only way to avoid is to block the game from accessing the network one way or anther. That being said, not everything has RedShell level stuff, although a bunch of games did and possibly others are using similar stuff that hasn't been identified. Take Two, like most companies caught with RedShell, solemnly promised to wait a while before reintroducing something like that and to do it less obviously next time.
IMO, it is best to assume that games are hostile from a security perspective. On Linux, at the very least run them under a different user without access to any important data. For Windows I'm not sure that will help much due to the permissions they require but I don't know Windows very well.
Not true. KSP has previous versions you can pin to in Steam and play just fine.
Employee treatment is a wide spread problem in the games industry. No unionization, and the pool of hires is continuously refreshed by new young naive people who've "always dreamt of working in games".
I'm not saying that this is not an issue, but it's kind of obvious that this is a shit market for employees.
I'm the one of the two original coauthors of the Kopernicus mod (although I handed off development of it to Dorian years ago when I got my first job after graduation because I was having trouble finding time while settling into working life). Writing that mod was already difficult as hell, because while the game supported mods, there was no SDK or any supporting documentation. There was essentially a gentleman's agreement between the KSP modding scene and the developers that ripping apart the game assemblies for the purposes of making mods wasn't didn't violate the terms of service, even though it explicitly forbid such activities.
Building Kopernicus by spending days in the Mono .NET Assembly Decompiler figuring out how to override pieces of the game to make the custom solar systems was pretty darn fun though. I can't tell you how much time I spent trying to figure out how to programmatically make something that PSystem.systemPrefab would accept as a Unity Prefab object. Or the fun of learning about attributes in .NET to build a reflection based configuration system that would actually process KSP's configuration file format into said systemPrefab object.
One of the things that the modding community felt at the time was that as Take-Two starting getting more aggressive about hiding the way the internals of the game worked (it's very murky if said gentleman's agreement is still in place), and in it's place producing some documentation, that the way forward may be just making an open source KSP-style game with original content and a completely different engine as to avoid any legal problems (we'd all seen how the internals of KSP worked, so we needed to make sure to do ours entirely differently). But no one (including myself) really ever found the time to work on it or made a serious effort to do so...
If they solved the performance issues with large ships, and have somewhat more realistic physics (e.g. Lagrange points/Parking orbits are impossible in KSP), that may just be cause to drop the idea completely. I've mainly found my time spent exploring the depths of orbital integrators, Eric Bruneton's atmosphere paper, and Vulkan.
Squad threw away the majority of the good will they originally generated (mostly by treating their community, and especially their modders, like crap) but the core concept of KSP is solid enough that even with their questionable behavior it still managed to thrive. I wont be backing this early on, but perhaps when it gets closer to release it'll be easier to judge what kind of product they're going to end up with.
My hope is that whatever team builds KSP2 does it with some level passion and care, like the first few years of KSP1 had, and perhaps without repeating the same mistakes KSP1 suffered from.
As for the quality of Uber Entertainment, their later works tended to be unsuccessful, though they seemed to have some luck with VR.
I can even withstand more bug than 0.13 and learn C# just to create mod.
The only thing there that excites me here is interstellar travel. I'm worried about this being a soul-less cashing in, with a "less, but pretty" situation - much like every versions of the Sims.
There's a mod called Community Tech Tree, which exists solely as a way to incorporate other mods into a somewhat coherent, extended tech tree.
That's how it should work, I also know a mod that provides python binding, but I still preferred kOS as it sorta became its own ecosystem. And it almost perfectly replicates the automation that are there in 1970s.
I think that would be kRPC ?
I recently hooked it up with Rust via krpc-mars . It’s a lot of fun.
There’s support for many other languages, e.g. Java, C#, C++.
Now with colonies and mining it is less realistic and more sci-fi. I can see the appeal of that, but it is a different appeal. I would have preferred that they spent energy developing things to make it more realistic. For example, Lagrange points, different forms of propellents, n body physics, automation, ets. Recently with Bereshit I learned that before (certain?) rockets can fire their main engines they have to fire small ones to provide acceleration in order to move the fuel in the big tank closer to the main engine. It would have been nice if KSP also took that into account.
On an unrelated topic, I wonder how KSP 2 will make multiplayer work with timewarp
The video seemed very realistic to me, in the hard sci-fi, "this is how it might look like under constraints of known physics and technology" way. The most outlandish things they've shown on KSP2 video are Orion and Daedalus rockets, rings for centrifugal gravity, and domed greenhouses, all of which are things taken out of real plans done decades ago, and have no reason for not working in reality except that we run out of funding for Space Race 40 years ago. There's also precedent with original KSP, which had its version of NERVA nuclear-thermal rocket engine, which never flown in space either.
This is what I'm wondering too.
I have had a "multiplayer space simulation with time warp" game design brewing in my head for quite some time, but it's a turn based concept. Essentially you submit a turn saying "this is everything I intend to do from today until Mars launch window 2033", and the server consolidates the moves of all players.
Space is a pretty big place, so direct interaction between two players' spacecraft is a relatively rare occasion. In real-life space mission close encounters there is usually only one "active" spacecraft (e.g. Dragon or Soyuz) and the other party is "passive" (like the ISS). Even when both craft are capable of maneuvering (like Apollo Lunar Orbit Rendez-Vous or Gemini/Agena missions), only one of the spacecraft were assigned an active role.
So I have an idea how you could make a pseudo-realtime simulation with a turn-based multiplayer.
This wouldn't allow going on EVA or doing some rendez-vous shenanigans in real time with your friends, though. And that's the kind of thing I imagine appeals to the "kerbal crowd".
> Recently with Bereshit I learned that before (certain?) rockets can fire their main engines they have to fire small ones to provide acceleration in order to move the fuel in the big tank closer to the main engine. It would have been nice if KSP also took that into account.
Afaik there's a mod for this which adds "realistic" rocket ignition, throttling and the need for ullage motors for liquid fuel rockets.
What comes to space colonies and other sci-fi elements, I think they might be a welcome addition to KSP. Now the career mode contains too much grinding for "science points" and when you've advanced far enough down the tech tree, you get to grind for minerals and biomes. The gameplay could certainly use some late-game goals.
(And mods for KSP are a thing to behold; they turn a somewhat curious game into a masterpiece and deepest treatment of space exploration in videogames to date.)
The trailer was hilarious without sound. Watching guy fall out landing module, or they wreck their entire space ship.
For those curious, RSS stands for Real Solar System - replacing the Kerbol system with ours. This is a large difficulty ramp, since things in our solar system are far larger than those in Kerbol, so even with the same surface gravities delta v requirements end up much higher. (For instance, ~2.7km/s is enough to hit orbit on Kerbin if flown properly, while 9.5km/s is more common on Earth) To partially compensate for this you have RP-0, a modpack that (among other things) replaces all the engines, fuels, tanks and other parts with their real life counterparts, making the higher delta v requirements actually achievable. (And also adding a ton of complications, such as life support, communications delay, cryogenic fuel boil off, limited restarts, fuel ullage, and more!)
I mean, it’s playable, certainly but it’s realistic in the at something like Forza is Realistic. So, sorta, but no.
However, mods come to the rescue. For flight, you have Ferram Aerospace Research, which gives you much more realistic (and much more punishing) aerodynamics, including all the interesting supersonic effects. For space, you have Principia, which introduces n-body physics, with all the Fun coming from it.
Perhaps this will change with KSP 2?
There was no foley, so it was just as funny with sound.
There is a quite a bit of fun in building and launching a rocket. The learning curve is very steep but can be its own challenge if you like that kind of thing (I do). It takes quite a long time to do anything. Lots of people have posted interesting stuff that they built if you get frustrated and want inspiration. The wiki  has extensive documentation (except for the recent Breaking Ground extension so far) although the game much less so. Look at threads of the month in the Announcements forum for some amazing stuff people do with KSP  (seems like it would take an unreasonable amount of time to do any of that).
Each version has lots of bugs  and some fundamental stuff was only implemented recently or not at all. DeltaV estimation and accurate maneuver planning are two things that only appeared about a year ago and are huge improvements. There is still no quick base game way to check the center of gravity of a plane with empty fuel tanks, although it won't fly well after a while if that is much different from the full center of gravity and you might not find out for a half hour or more since it takes forever to get anywhere and it is hard to balance a plane well enough to be able to use time warp. There are a few auto direction holding options if you have the right tech but nothing to keep your plane wings level with the ground or fly holding altitude. You can recover the parts of rockets that you land but you can't recover anything you separate before getting your main craft in orbit so you can switch focus to the debris (the huge fuel tanks that some people complain about in other comments are for those of us who want to recover everything and not leave space junk).
I'd recommend both of the extensions if you are going to try it (although maybe try the base game first to make sure you minimally like it), particularly Breaking Ground that adds some minimal automation ability and the ability to get science by crashing stuff in to a planet or moon (this has bugs, although it should be fixed shortly). In career mode it takes forever to unlock all the science and almost none of it is at all related to building rockets, it is just doing the same few trivial things in a variety of locations.
Once you do get somewhere, on your home planet or elsewhere, there isn't really anything there, even with Breaking Ground that does improve it a bit. It used to be all terrain scatters (tree, rock, etc. looking stuff that you can go right through) and hills, now there seem to be two things you can interact with (also rock and tree looking things) that are the same all over a planet. So much of the fun is in the building and making up your own stories as you test a design. Or you can make stations and visit your stations.
I've played quite a few games due to poor health. Better in many ways IMO are Infinifactory (other than the horrible story), RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 (and 1 and 2 for that matter, with OpenRCT2 a nice requires-the-original-game upgrade mostly to be able to use higher resolution), and SimCity 3000 (unfortunately the GOG version crashes randomly after a few hours). Tropico (any version) and Surviving Mars also but they do the mandatory micromanagement and random limitations thing that I don't like (Surviving Mars more so but it has some good ideas too, like a number of camera options for taking in game photos). Theme Hospital (difficulty focused) and Banished (fairly building focused once you figure out the mechanics, although not that many layout options) are much simpler games but have some advantages from the game aspect and at least some building (Project Hospital looks nice and has more building but still has game breaking bugs nine months after release). Spore is also worth a mention; the building is mostly cosmetic and the gameplay has a bunch of issues, but it is still one of the few others that have a build and fly a space ship aspect (only with no atmosphere at all :/). OpenTTD (fully open source) and Cities in Motion focus on transportation building and are limited but decent for what they are. Widelands and Unknown Horizons are also fully open source builder clone games that are IMO improvments over the games that inspired them, Settlers II and the Anno series, although still not all that great. I hear Planet Coaster is good but it isn't avilable DRM free. There are a few more DRM free options but I get the impression they are difficulty focused rather than building focused.
The cinematic launch video is pretty funky but is clearly marked as "Not actual gameplay". The press materials talk about new parts and new places to visit, all of which could simply indicate a very large expansion pack on the original. There's nothing in the accompanying "developer journey" video to suggests it's a new base game either, let alone a new engine; quite the opposite: everyone is wearing Unity t-shirts.
I'm hoping it's both, because the current gameplay vastly exceeds the game's performance envelope. In particular, the physics engine: I get 5 frames per second when docking large space stations, and KSP is running its physics engine on two CPU cores out of 10, and not even warming up a GPU.
Or the whole trailer might be rendered in Maya.
Current KSP is plagued by performance issues during advanced gameplay, particularly threading granularity issues with physics simulation when running large craft such as space stations or complex rocketry. There are some amazing KSP videos on YouTube with orbital construction on a grand scale, gigantic interplanetary vehicles, complex planetary bases and so on; their dirty secret being that the original gameplay is actually occurring at a painfully frustrating <10 fps and has been massively sped up for consumption.
GP is suggesting that using DOTS those issues can be relieved, by making more efficient use of available system resources.
What worries me more is how this announcement seemingly came out of nowhere, all while the actual KSP is still receiving updates. Even little quality of life updates like new textures for most (or all?) of the planets in the next update. Something just seems off.
And let's be honest - half the charm of KSP is its lack of polish, and the janky little things at the corners that just don't quite work right and probably never will.
Maybe this is successful and introduces a new (half)generation of simulation gamers to space/physics sims. Or maybe it blows up and we never hear about it again. Who knows. I'm just not "hyped" at all.
This is a game sequel that I am worried about. The original is a fantastic game. The sequel is being made by different people. Maybe they dont have as good an understanding of the medium of games. This trailer is a bit of a red flag in that regard already.
I've read that it'll be available for "PC, PS4, and Xbox One."
Combine that with the lack of Nvidea drivers and Macs are in an especially dismal place for 3D gaming for the forseeable future.
I really don't get cinematic trailers though. If it's not actual gameplay, then what does it tell me about the game? What does it tell me that I don't already know from KSP1?
And they tell you the tone. Note all the stuff crashing, but also the hopeful message of expanding. It's an emotional appeal to you. It's a way to communicate to your audience that, "Hey, we get you. We know what you want from this series, and it's in good hands."
If you pay at least $300/year for Unity, you are permitted to disable the splash screen. If you do so, it is not at all obvious that your application is based on Unity. If, however, you use Unity's free, "personal" tier, your application may not disable the Unity splash screen. This tier is allowable until your game is making at least $100,000 per year.
The effect of this is that less successful, low budget, and therefore buggier games are much more likely to display the logo then polished games with multiple people working hard and a budget. Thus Unity has accidentally created a licensing scheme which causes gamers to associate them with lower quality games.
Every large AAA Unity game I've ever played has a certain jankyness to it...microstutters, glitchy UI. At some point you just have to accept that the common variable is: Unity.
Edit: Maybe you could provide a few examples of games with those issues?
Cities Skyline is the poster child (well besides KSP) of Unity Jankiness. Just look at how many mods there to fix basic things in Skyline.
I suspect that KSP is janky because of KSP (or because it was built on a very old Unity and ported over across many engine versions.)
But yeah, AAA games usually have specific requirements better satisfied by a custom engine.
The Unity Pro and Plus subscriptions have no limitations to customization of the Unity Splash Screen.
The Unity Personal subscription has the following limitations:
The Unity Splash Screen cannot be disabled.
The Unity logo cannot be disabled."
https://store.unity.com/ - I think these prices have changed since Unity first appeared.
The abomination that is the Unity launcher: Very much.
So you end up with more asset flips, unexperienced devs, etc. on the Unity engine than say the Unreal engine.
1. An element of a culture or system of behaviour passed from one individual to another by imitation or other non-genetic means.
2. An image, video, piece of text, etc., typically humorous in nature, that is copied and spread rapidly by Internet users, often with slight variations.
I've heard that Unreal's cross platform support matured in that time and I recall that Unity made some headlines for less progressive changes to their licencing terms... within the last two years I'd like to say?
He seems to think it holds promise and is looking forward to playing it.
Bonus - it's free. I've burned a lot of hours in Orbiter.
If you happen to have heroic self-control, you could find a lot of enjoyment simply doing a few moon landing missions over the course of 5-10 hours.
I wonder if you've tried Factorio?
So very excited about KSP2!
Any perceived struggles relating to inventory management should be recognized as a signal that you should be carrying carry fewer things, which can be accomplished by automating the production of various intermediate components.
Well, now that I put it like this, it sounds way too close to my dayjob...
As for math, you won't have to read up much - KSP is the ultimate textbook. Watch some introduction videos by Scott Manley or whatever the community currently recommends, and fire up KSP. Make your first orbit, then first transfer to Mun or Minmus, then back, learn to change planes, intercept objects and dock... you won't even notice when you've gained intuitive understanding of basic orbital mechanics.
You will, because every time you watch sci-fi where a ship drops from orbit by accelerating towards the planet you’ll be screaming inside.
Other KSP side effects include: wondering how much Δv your car has, calling reverse "retrograde", calling right/left "normal"/"antinormal", calling up/down "radial-out"/"radial-in"...
Aww hell that'll work if you have sci-fi amounts of delta-v. (:
You might end up with reentry heating issues, but that's what burning retrograde with your torchship is for. Who cares about making the landscape glow for the next century, we've got fusion!
† Though, y'know, I've never heard a sci-fi story mention gravitomagnetism. Instantaneous change in gravitational force would imply a large gravitational flux, which would cause similarly improbable and interesting phenomena as the ability to instantaneously teleport magnets further together/apart would. With magnetism the weird things are monopoles; with gravitomagnetism... dipoles?
It rotates the orbit, which is not the most efficient way to de-orbit. Instead, to de-orbit with minimal delta-v expended, you burn retrograde at the highest point of the orbit. This will lower the lowest point of the orbit into the atmosphere.
Out of curiosity, what would you want from the story? Astronaut in mid-altitude polar orbit around Earth notices at the end of a few [...thousand...] years that the vacuum-freefalling fuzzy dice art piece in the cockpit finally shows a different face to the entry hatch? Spooky stuff! ;)
A low altitude polar orbit around a millisecond pulsar would certainly allow for plot twists (pardon the pun), but effects highlighted by the GEM formalism would be way down the list of post-Newtonian observables (and in any case you'd be far from the weak field limit in which the GEM formalism is reasonably reliable).
Rather than cast about in the GEM formalism for ideas when departing dramatically from a slow stable orbit around a rotating spherical body, you might be happier going down the Equivalence Principle route directly, thinking about a pseudo-gravitational field popping up in response to acceleration. Michael Weiss's text at the link might give you some ideas: http://www.math.ucr.edu/home/baez/physics/Relativity/SR/Twin...
The rough sketch based on that is that an astronaut bouncing around in his reentry capsule, absent any view of the interactions between the outside of the capsule and the atmosphere, is free to think of the pseudo-forces he feels (he and the capsule both want to keep freely falling, but the capsule keeps interacting with the atmosphere, jostling the capsule around his free-fall trajectory) as pseudo-gravitational, much like riders of a vomit comet, roller coaster, fast car making a sharp turn, etc. and their experiences of changing weight. (Weight in the "contact" sense: the quantities piezo-electric bathroom scales would report if slipped between human body parts and surfaces bolted/welded to the inside of the capsule/car/roller-coaster/vomit-comet, with those scales essentially quantifying the feelings arising from stimulation of their skins' various sensory receptors like Merkel nerve endings and Pacini corpuscles).
As a complete aside (I was thinking of dynamic neutral buoyancy for astronauts in your proposed situation, so fish came up), Kerbal probably doesn't simulate anything like the observations in this thread: https://www.reddit.com/r/askscience/comments/k0bdu/would_fis... and really you should be able to send simulated octopus astronauts on missions!
Just like the passengers.
This might sound like a flip comment to some, but it's 100% legit. After playing KSP way too many hours over the years, I'll still get an unreasonable amount of joy from creating a new sandbox game (which has unlimited resources), creating an absurd but monstrous rocket and spend two hours trying to get it into orbit.
Yes, that process will cause many explosions. Yes, you will destroy parts of the space center. Yes, it's all-together fun.
The great thing about this game though is that it teaches you orbital mechanics in an intuitive and fun way, much better than reading a textbook full of vector calculus ever could.
You can do the mathematics if you want (or look at a summary in the game) but it's not required.
That said, I did use a joystick with KSP briefly, and it made docking much more fun. And, of course, flying airplanes.
edit: M83 - Outro
I'm still mad because that article killed all momentum between the multiplayer mod