# General QuestionHow is Kerbal more famous than Orbiter.

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#### statickid

##### CatDog from Deimos
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There are ways that KSP's spaceships are more realistic than most of the ones in Orbiter, particularly if you play with some of the realism add-ons. Any of the DG-based ships in Orbiter are purely fictional, as are capital ships like the Arrow and the rotating lunar station. "Silly" and "half-baked" aren't quite the appropriate terms for what KSP does. Its ship editor is serious and full featured. You can certainly make some "silly" creations, but they likely won't get far off the launch pad. Successful ship building requires care, precision and knowledge. It took me 40 hours of play before I could land a ship I'd constructed on Kerbin's inner moon. It's not true that KSP is merely a toy: its focus is just more on rocketry and orbital dynamics than on spaceflight.

Orbiter has more realistic gravity and a better flight-sim model, both in terms of atmosphere simulation and cockpit instrumentation. (Though, again, there are KSP add-ons that close both gaps.) The XR2 is probably my favorite vehicle to operate in any sim; I love all the switches, the voice feedback, the flight and damage models, and the responsiveness and utility of the craft. And I also love the sense of scale that Orbiter provides. But they both have their strengths and weaknesses as space sims. And KSP's weakness is not that it's cartoonish or less serious than Orbiter.

Even if it is possible to mod KSP to be more realistic, that isn't really how KSP is marketed or even it's original concept. Some of these things look like big improvements over vanilla KSP for sure. Even things like the trajectories drawn in space bug me though. I'm sure there's some mod to turn it off or whatever, but for whatever reason I like having my senses limited to HUDs and green screen MFD readouts lol.

I think there's a part of me that wouldn't mind if Orbiter was purely text based :hmm:

Brushing individual tastes aside and speaking to the OP Question-

KSP has been marketed, so there is at least one component for popularity :lol:

#### Urwumpe

##### Not funny anymore
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I think there's a part of me that wouldn't mind if Orbiter was purely text based :hmm:

I am almost sure, somebody has already created a rogue-like Client for Orbiter. :lol:

#### zerofay32

##### Buckeye
I thought someone did a flight when the graphics were separated from the core with the graphics client turned off, using only the MFDs... It's actually not that different for most spacecraft.

#### Shifty

##### Donator
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then what the hell are you folks waiting here for? Orbiter will certainly not change much in these points in the foreseeable future.

Would it have been different if you played KSP instead? After all, its soooo realistic. And better. And more accessible

Not sure why the defensiveness. It is possible to like and enjoy more than one similar thing. In fact, if I like a thing, I usually also like other similar things. I've said repeatedly that Orbiter has a better flight and instrumentation model. That is and always will be true. I love flying the XR2 and DG4. I've tried my hand at the KSC to Wideawake challenge, which you certainly couldn't do in remotely the same way in KSP. Likewise doing an instrument landing of a Shuttle Fleet shuttle using Glidepath and Aerobrake MFD to manage velocity, pitch and altitude. That said, fine tuning a rocket using calculations: making sure I have enough electrical power, fuel, supplies, control and communication for a lunar mission is not really possible in Orbiter. The two programs, while similar, don't scratch exactly the same itch. It's possible to play and enjoy both.

#### Urwumpe

##### Not funny anymore
Donator
Not sure why the defensiveness. It is possible to like and enjoy more than one similar thing.

Well, I have both. :lol: That is also what makes the discussion a bit confusing to me.

#### Face

##### Well-known member
Orbiter Contributor
Beta Tester
Not sure why the defensiveness.

It was no defensive comment, just an honest question regarding the confusion of Pipcard (and perhaps others thinking the same way). Actually I meant to even encourage him to leave Orbiter and fully embrace KSP if he feels like so. There is no need to feel bad if his main interest isn't here anymore.

If I would have been defensive in regards to Orbiter, I'd started to count the ways that KSP is worse than it (from my personal point of view), only to encourage him to stay here.

But IMHO there is no point in doing so, because all his comments highlight that his main focus is already on KSP, anyway. I just can't see a reason to stick around here if this is the case. And since Pipcard was the one dropping the comment (and thereby doing a slight necro of 3 years ), my statements were mostly in response to his situation.

#### statickid

##### CatDog from Deimos
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All the while I am mainly offering speculations as to why KSP is more popular as in my original thought I found it interesting that it is popular maybe for some of the same reasons I'm not very interested in it.

#### RacerX

##### Donator
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There are some issues with orbiter imo its old and outdated and really isnt evolving or improving or keeping up with the times. I keep checking back year after year hoping for some form of collision detection so far nothing. And after all these years seems to me interest and activity on the forums gets less and less. But if anyone even dares to mention open source or getting ahold of the source it is immediately shot down for whatever legit reason and thats fine but the problem still,no matter youre argument, orbiter is not being developed in such a way in order to be attractive to new users. So here we are. The simulator, the community is dying a slow death and i keep checking back here on the forums hoping something will change but so far nothing. Alot of die hard old timers might be fine with that well pat yourself on the back congratulations i hope you are happy. But hey on the bright side we have plenty of skins to choose from. ?

#### Urwumpe

##### Not funny anymore
Donator
:rant:

congratulations i hope you are happy.

Actually I am.

#### Linguofreak

##### Well-known member
But if anyone even dares to mention open source or getting ahold of the source it is immediately shot down for whatever legit reason and thats fine but the problem still,no matter youre argument, orbiter is not being developed in such a way in order to be attractive to new users.

Orbiter is one guy's project, and last I heard, it was a hobby, not a day job. So, yeah, it's not going to develop at a breakneck pace, the development will focus on things that matter to Martin, not necessarily things that might attract people to Orbiter. And eventually Martin will either have higher priorities and move on, or grow old and become too ill and/or dead to work on it, or suffer an accident and become too injured and/or dead to work on it. That's just a fact of life.

As for open sourcing it: Yeah, it would be nice, I would certainly prefer that all software be open source, and open sourcing it would probably speed up the pace of development (as well as providing insurance for the community against something happening to Martin), but in the end it's not commercial software, nor is it being used in mission critical applications, so Orbiter being closed source doesn't create the customer-abusive situations that motivate my pro-open-source attitudes regarding most other types of software. So, since there's nothing really huge at stake, we can ask nicely that Orbiter be open sourced, but if Martin doesn't want to do it, there's no use pestering him or complaining if it doesn't happen. It's rude, and it's not important enough to be rude over. We need our energy to fight for open source in things like operating systems, cell phone firmware, self-driving cars, and other things where the current closed-source trends could do actual, severe harm to society in the long run.

All in all, did you really have to necro this thread to make this rant?

#### RacerX

##### Donator
Donator
like i said it is MY opinion. It might not be a popular opinion and judging by the "thanked by" on the posts nothing is going to change same ol same ol. But hey enjoy your sim and hail probe

#### jedidia

##### shoemaker without legs
But if anyone even dares to mention open source or getting ahold of the source it is immediately shot down

It's not getting shot down, it's just that that's really not our decision but the Doctor's. It's been brought up in the past, but each time it's ultimately pointless because Martin feels more comfortable keeping it closed, and I understand that decision. "Getting a hold of the source" without him releasing it would even be illegal, so I'm not sure what you mean by that.

#### Sbb1413

I have never used Kerbal Space Program because the cost of buying the game is always $39.99 (roughly Rs. 2,876)! I know what KSP is by watching the gameplay by Scott Manley, Matt Lowne, etc. #### Face ##### Well-known member Orbiter Contributor Addon Developer Beta Tester I have never used Kerbal Space Program because the cost of buying the game is always$39.99 (roughly Rs. 2,876)! I know what KSP is by watching the gameplay by Scott Manley, Matt Lowne, etc.

Bought my copy on Steam for roughly 10€ in a sale, and I must say that it is indeed a lot of fun. I even managed to get my 2 boys (13-15y) playing it, a feat that was impossible to achieve with Orbiter. Now they know what an orbit is, what dv means and why thrust is not the same as ISP.

As a tool to teach space-flight to young people, it is superior to Orbiter IMHO. But so is Scratch in contrast to Visual Studio in regards of teaching code, too.

#### barrygolden

##### Active member
Back in the eighties NASA had this computer sim called 3D world and they used it to track the Shuttle on the big screen at times at MCC and they would show it on NASA tv during missions. I wished they would have allowed us to log in to it to follow the missions. I read a little article about Orbiter and bought a lap top. As I was staying at a hotel across from JSC I had no idea how to down load it or make it work but while I was in the lobby on there comp computer a guy walked by and saw what I was looking at and he brought a thumb drive down and loaded orbiter onto that lap top. With the help of many here like brianj, 4th rock, dommany dave413, hutchesen, and gattis and others they have helped me no only enjoy Orbiter but be a better user of computers to the point where I got a job with Space X and now one of the flow directors for Dragons.

The work done by David413, Dave S and Domany really help to follow the Shuttle/ISS flights and brianj's and others is used by some to follow the space X flights today by some of us. I do not have Kerbel but have seen some videos of its Shuttle/ISS flights and wish I had that. The Earth views are so realistic and great detail on the Shuttle and ISS. I'll try to look at what it does with these manned dragon flights to the ISS.

I still enjoy Orbiter and like to see un flown missions and NASA planned but canceled missions like Apollo 18,19 and 20 or Skylab B. and right now Apollo/ Skylab advanced using Apollo hardware to refurbish Skylab beyond the 3 manned missions .

This almost 10 year hiatus from manned US flights has been almost the end of Orbiter but its still there and I think if Artemus ever flies maybe interest in space flight sims might return

#### 4throck

##### Enthusiast !
like i said it is MY opinion. It might not be a popular opinion and judging by the "thanked by" on the posts nothing is going to change same ol same ol. But hey enjoy your sim and hail probe

I agree that Orbiter has moved away from the community.
The disconnect is great, and most people are gone. No people = no new add-ons.

But posting about it won't change it.
And if the people here have special interests (that are different from yours)... there's nothing wrong about it!

So just enjoy what you can...

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#### gattispilot

I agree that Orbiter has moved away from the community.
The disconnect is great, and most people are gone. No people = no new add-ons.

But posting about it won't change it.
And if the people here have special interests (that are different from yours)... there's nothing wrong about it!

So just enjoy what you can...

Yes it seems there are few developers. I hope to get the shuttle done. Then got other projects.

#### Ripley

##### Tutorial translator
Donator
I agree that Orbiter has moved away from the community...
I think the major reason for this is (quite paradoxically) due to the much awaited 3D terrain, which "created" some well known side-effects, like hilly runways, bouncy ships' contact points, etc.
All this, coupled with the perceived lack of immediate support at release time, discouraged the developers.

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