What it does
Rearranges various aspects of the kerbal solar system to provide some variety and challenge.
Note: No new content; this is not a planet pack. You won't find any new moons or planets here. This just takes some of the existing moons & planets, and moves them so that a career playthrough is a different experience.
(On the plus side, this means it's extremely lightweight and won't be a drag on your computer.)
Note: Requires Kopernicus (not included).
How to install
- Install Kopernicus, which is not included here. This mod requires Kopernicus to work, and won't do anything without it.
- Unzip the contents of "GameData" to your GameData folder, same as with most mods.
Caution: As with any solar-system-altering mod, it's not recommended to install this mod into the middle of an existing career; doing so runs the risk of ships getting stranded, put into weird orbits, or being snatched into orbit around a different celestial body. Best to install before starting a new career.
- Q: So what did you change, and why?
- A: See the "What does this change, and why?" section, below.
- Q: What the heck? No new planets, moons, or artwork? Isn't that a pretty half-assed way to make a mod?
- A: Yes.
- Q: I installed it but nothing happens.
- A: You forgot to install Kopernicus.
- Q: Can I install this on my existing career game?
- A: In principle yes, but I wouldn't recommend it. Rearranging the solar system in the middle of a game can have odd effects (ships ending up in odd places).
- Q: Is this mod compatible with Outer Planets?
- A: Yes. When OPM is installed, Eeloo stays in orbit around Sarnus. Sarnus moves inwards to where Jool used to be, and all the other outer planets move inward correspondingly. (Except for Plock, which moves into Jool orbit, since Jool's lonely now with just three moons. (Also because Plock was the one OPM planet that I find myself rarely visiting. Now there's still a reason to go to Jool.)
- Q: How about Kerbol Origins?
- A: Yes, this one too! Also works when both OPM and Kerbol Origins are installed. The Kerbol Origins patch does some significant rearrangement... try it and see!
- Q: Is this mod compatible with <some other solar system mod>?
- A: I wouldn't bet on it. I haven't tried this out or tested with anything other than OPM, so use at your own risk.
- Q: I get weird buggy-looking motion of my ship when it leaves Pol's or Gilly's SoI.
- A: Known issue; I think it's a Kopernicus bug that happens when a celestial body has an overridden SoI size. You can fix it by doing a quicksave-and-reload right after leaving Gilly's or Pol's SoI.
- Q: Hey! How come my game's not as pretty as all those screenshots in the gallery below?
- A: That's because those f/x come from Scatterer and Stock Visual Enhancements. This mod itself doesn't do anything to visuals, it simply rearranges planets & moons.
What does this change, and why?
(See gallery below for screenshots.)
- Significantly closer to the Sun (bring radiators!), in a much more eccentric orbit.
- Gilly orbits it in a low equatorial orbit.
- Rationale: Altered orbit raises the dV needed to get there, adds to challenge. Providing Gilly helps to mitigate the challenge (convenient place to mine fuel), and makes Moho more interesting (I always found it really dull to visit).
- Now has Ike as a moon instead of Gilly, in a fairly Mun-like orbit.
- Otherwise left Eve alone.
- The Mun is now in a radically different orbit: inclined 62 degrees, highly elliptical, significantly lower. It orbits Kerbin exactly once every two days, on a path that brings it sweeping majestically across KSC's eastern sky at periapsis.
- Minmus no longer lives here... but it's not too far away! See Dres, below.
- Science values from the Mun are significantly lowered, to account for the proximity of Dres.
- Rationale: Mun/Minmus were the most important places to add novelty, since I've been to them so many times. The Mun sees a lot of traffic, so I wanted to give it really nifty skyviews of Kerbin looming overhead.
- Now has Pol and Bop orbiting close in, somewhat mimicking Phobos and Deimos.
- Ike has gone away (it now lives at Eve).
- Pol and Bop are carefully placed to be even more annoying than Ike used to be, for anyone wanting to put satellites around Duna.
- Pol's SoI at periapsis actually comes within one kilometer of the top of Duna's atmosphere, and Bop's periapsis is actually somewhat lower than Pol's apoapsis (they're in resonant orbits so they never collide).
- Result: There is nowhere "safe" to put a satellite in low or even medium Duna orbit. (evil cackle) The moons' low orbit also makes for some nifty screenshots.
- This planet has now moved to be a "pseudo-satellite" of Kerbin. That is, it's still a planet orbiting the sun, outside Kerbin's SoI... but its orbit is identical to Kerbin's except for being slightly eccentric and ever so slightly inclined.
- The result is that Dres is perpetually about 140,000 km from Kerbin. From Kerbin's viewpoint, it appears to "orbit" once a year. You can go there at any time (no launch windows!), and a trip just takes a few days.
- Credit where credit is due: I've shamelessly stolen this idea from the moon Aptur in KillAshley's excellent mod New Horizons. If you haven't played that mod before... give it a whirl. It's tons of fun.
- Science value of Dres has been reduced to Minmus levels, since it's a lot more easily accessed than it used to be.
- Speaking of Minmus... it now orbits Dres.
- Rationale: In the stock game, I never, ever visit Dres. It's small, dull, and inconvenient to get to. So I wanted to move it somewhere that would give me a reason to visit it, and provide some navigational challenges along the way. Moving Minmus there also helped to liven things up.
- Moves inwards to the location of Dres' old orbit, so as not to leave a "gap" in the solar system.
- Since it has lost its moons Pol and Bop to Duna, it gains Eeloo as a satellite (see below).
- This is now a moon of Jool, in a highly eccentric and inclined orbit that brings it squeaking past Vall on every orbit. Pe inside Vall, Ap outside Tylo.
- Rationale: Like Dres, this is another planet I never, ever visit in the stock game, and for pretty much the same reasons: small, uninteresting, and inconvenient to get to. Plus, Jool needed a friend after losing Pol and Bop.
Why would anyone want this?
I don't know about you, but I've been playing KSP a lot. For several years, over the course of thousands of hours. I've been to Mun and Minmus so many times I've got their geography memorized better than the state I live in. There's a very real risk of things getting... stale.
Rearranging the solar system is a way to keep things fresh for me; it provides a new set of challenges and strategies. My goals were as follows:
- Give me a reason to visit the places I never, ever go (Dres, Eeloo). It's like getting new planets for free!
- Jazz up the places I do go, but which aren't very interesting to me.
- Provide a very different experience for the places I visit a lot (Mun, Minmus, Duna).
- Eye candy. Arrange bodies to give nifty views when orbiting or landed on them.
You'll note that what I haven't done is to completely rejigger the solar system. I've left the overall design more or less intact. That's because I like the stock system-- I think the Squad team did a great job of designing the solar system, overall.
It's just that I've played around in it so much for so long that I'd like to try mixing things up a bit.
Note: This is NOT a visual f/x mod. The pretty clouds and other effects you see in the screenshots below aren't from this mod. They're from two of my favorite f/x mods, Scatterer and Stock Visual Enhancements.
You don't need those mods to play with this one.
Moho & Gilly
Eve & Ike
Kerbin & Mun
Duna, Bop, & Pol
Dres & Minmus
Jool & Eeloo