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Subject: While you are patiently waiting ... rss

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Bart Rachemoss
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When I was young (many years ago) the best show on television was the Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color. Sometimes they had episodes about science and the future that lit fire to my imagination. I just rewatched Mars and Beyond from 1957 which gives a brief history of humans' understanding of the cosmos and ends up with (spoiler alert!) an imagined mission to Mars. Watching this again was a great nostalgic trip back to my childhood. It was fascinating to see how much both our culture and our knowledge of the solar system have changed since then.

While patiently waiting for HF3, I've been interested in lighter space-based games that aren't filled with warfare. The new game Leaving Earth has recently started shipping. The theme is very similar to the theme of HF. Some people are describing it as High Frontier, the Card Game. Here is the blurb:
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The year is 1956. Mankind stands at the dawn of a new age, the Space Age, when the flying bombs of yesteryear will become the rocket ships of tomorrow. As the director of a national space program, your country is depending on you for success in this great contest. You may be the first to create an artificial satellite, send a probe to another planet, or even put a man on the moon.

Leaving Earth is a game about planning and about managing risk. With even a single grand journey into outer space, you might claim victory in the game. Consequently, it is your job to plan each journey carefully, finding the cheapest, quickest, and safest ways to reach your objective — but do not spend too long preparing, or another nation might reach their goal before you.

On your turn, you will be conducting research, building spacecraft, and directing journeys into outer space. To conduct research, you buy an advancement that begins with certain flaws, then you test the advancement to find and eliminate those flaws. To build a spacecraft, you purchase components and assemble them into a whole. To travel to outer space, you expend rockets to maneuver from one location to another.
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Steve Carey
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BitJam wrote:
While patiently waiting for HF3, I've been interested in lighter space-based games that aren't filled with warfare. The new game Leaving Earth has recently started shipping. The theme is very similar to the theme of HF. Some people are describing it as High Frontier, the Card Game.


I'm a fan of High Frontier, but it just doesn't reach the table as often as I'd like.

Leaving Earth is much more accessible, yet it scratches the same space-age itch (though in a different sort of way). I'm really enjoying the heck out of the game, having already played it solo and co-op. It's a very clever design.

I'll definitely have room for both on my favorites gaming shelf.
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Steve Carey
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BitJam wrote:
I just rewatched Mars and Beyond from 1957 which gives a brief history of humans' understanding of the cosmos and ends up with (spoiler alert!) an imagined mission to Mars. Watching this again was a great nostalgic trip back to my childhood.


Just watched the linked video - the voice of Paul Frees certainly brought back some good memories.

The closing animated sequence of the Mission to Mars was pretty spectacular!
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Sithrak - The god who hates you unconditionally
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At the risk of having rotten fruit thrown at me (Because video games), Kerbal Space Program is all about building rockets and trying to reach other planets (While trying not to strand your heroic heros on the other side of the solar system, out of fuel, with no ISRU)
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Steve Carey
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Flamin_Jesus wrote:
Kerbal Space Program is all about building rockets and trying to reach other planets (While trying not to strand your heroic heros on the other side of the solar system, out of fuel, with no ISRU)


That's a computer game only right (I have zero interest in computer games and so am not familiar with KSP)?
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Morten K
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Steve Carey wrote:
BitJam wrote:
While patiently waiting for HF3, I've been interested in lighter space-based games that aren't filled with warfare. The new game Leaving Earth has recently started shipping. The theme is very similar to the theme of HF. Some people are describing it as High Frontier, the Card Game.


I'm a fan of High Frontier, but it just doesn't reach the table as often as I'd like.

Leaving Earth is much more accessible, yet it scratches the same space-age itch (though in a different sort of way). I'm really enjoying the heck out of the game, having already played it solo and co-op. It's a very clever design.

I'll definitely have room for both on my favorites gaming shelf.


Just a shame it is so hard to get in Europe - or expensive
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Dave Daffin
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Steve Carey wrote:
I'll definitely have room for both on my favorites gaming shelf.


I definitely don't have room on my shelves, but I will be getting both (eventually!)
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Craig C
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Got my copy of Leaving Earth but haven't had the chance to play it yet.

Hit 724 hours of Kerbal Space Program time this morning before work. Possibly a sign of a problem.

Haven't heard of that show, but it sounds entertaining. I'll definitely check it out!
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Al Cott
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Anyone found a way to get Leaving Earth in Europe for a reasonable price? Based on their web site it'll cost me over $130 (inc tax) to get this $35 game delivered to the UK. surprise
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jonathan schleyer
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So is it worth getting both Leaving Earth and High Frontier? I've got High Frontier on pre-order...
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Bart Rachemoss
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Lumpy75 wrote:
Anyone found a way to get Leaving Earth in Europe for a reasonable price? Based on their web site it'll cost me over $130 (inc tax) to get this $35 game delivered to the UK. surprise

This is dealt with in the Leaving Earth forums: European bulk order.
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Bart Rachemoss
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provence wrote:
So is it worth getting both Leaving Earth and High Frontier? I've got High Frontier on pre-order...

This is totally up to you. I assume you are already familiar with High Frontier. You can get an idea of what Leaving Earth is like by the pictures and forums on the Leaving Earth page. Some of the session reports and the one review mention High Frontier:
gar0u wrote:
I am a big High Frontier fan. This game scratches a different itch, and I love it as a solo experience.

I haven't seen any video reviews yet.

For *me* they are different enough to each have a place on my rather small gaming shelf. For example the HF playing time is listed as 3+ hours while LE is 1 to 3 hours. But you really need to decide for yourself. You might even want to wait until more information about LE is posted before you decide.
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Craig C
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Pretty entertaining show. Thanks for the link. It was interesting to see what we thought we knew back then.

Unboxed Leaving Earth last night, and hoping to play in a couple days. The differences as I see them so far:

LE - has the mystery/randomness based on our knowledge at the time, and the planets can actually be different than reality. Venus can be landable and have life, etc. Technologies must be researched and can experience failures when activated. Looks to be a single path for traveling to various sites. Set budget and time limit. VP/win opportunities are known to all at the beginning. EDIT: LE has supplies and life support. I don't think I'll be able to strand my crew in orbit of Mercury for 30 years in this game.

HF - known system with no deviations from reality (can't land on Venus, etc.). Failures are dependent on where you go (radiation belts, aerobrakes, etc.), not on activation/use of components. Many more travel options and multiple paths to a destination (discovering these is one of the best parts of the game). Players must figure out how to earn money for missions. Lots of futuristic options for play not present in LE (colonies, bernals, space combat, politics). Many paths to victory and the players can choose their own goals.

They both look to have the same level of brain-meltiness and risk management. Both can be played solo, though in HF you'll have to invent your solo goals. Sounds like LE is shorter play-time. So I think there's room for both (plus Kerbal Space Program) in my house.

My wife might disagree.
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Mike Hoyt

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Sorry for stupid question, but what is a bernal?
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René Schep
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blockhead wrote:
Sorry for stupid question, but what is a bernal?


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernal_sphere
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Jesse W.
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Another plug for Kerbal Space Program if you have a computer that can run it. The theme is a little bit silly since your astronauts are little green dudes and the names of the planets are changed, but it's all about building rockets and planning/piloting missions.

Edit: This Leaving Earth looks way cool as well.
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Brian Burnley
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Kerbal is sublime: a very different experience from High Frontier, but not less accurate in capturing the daring, meticulous planning, ad-hoc creativity, and sense-of-wonder of designing and piloting vehicles around a solar system. Whether you are a gamer or not, you absolutely should give this a few hours of your life. It rewards investment, so I recommend setting yourself a goal and sticking to it until accomplished even if you think you might bounce off the first few minutes of the game (orbit around the homeworld [Kerbin] and/or landing on the moon [Mun] are great achievements for those new to KSP ... and don't be ashamed if you need a hint or two about getting to Mun!). The story you'll get out of this experience will likely be deeply personal in a way few games manage to achieve.

Along with Crusader Kings II (and in some ways Cities: Skylines), KSP falls into a category of recent computer games that remind me of what it was like to play games as a child: wonder-filled processes of experimentation and discovery that offer insights I feel have real worth.

Leaving Earth looks like it rocks and I will have no option but to pick it up (the variable nature of the celestial discoveries you make is a huge turn on for me).
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Donald Cleary
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Steve Carey wrote:
Flamin_Jesus wrote:
Kerbal Space Program is all about building rockets and trying to reach other planets (While trying not to strand your heroic heros on the other side of the solar system, out of fuel, with no ISRU)


That's a computer game only right (I have zero interest in computer games and so am not familiar with KSP)?


That's too bad. KSP is stellar, in most definitions of the word. It's not your average computer game. You actually design a rocket in KSP, right down to the aerodynamics of each part it's composed of that is exposed to atmosphere. The computer does what you can't really do in a board game simulation. Want to know how retro sci-fi rocket ships would work in dense or thin atmosphere? You can actually find out. How about launching a Saturn V from the surface of the moon? Completely different launch profile to orbit. About the only thing it's missing is interstellar travel and rival space agencies.
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Steve Carey wrote:
Flamin_Jesus wrote:
Kerbal Space Program is all about building rockets and trying to reach other planets (While trying not to strand your heroic heros on the other side of the solar system, out of fuel, with no ISRU)


That's a computer game only right (I have zero interest in computer games and so am not familiar with KSP)?


Sorry, I didn't subscribe so didn't notice the question:

Yes, it's a computer game only. I've seen requests by people to retheme some of the recent space-exploration-y board games with KSP, but having a "true" KSP would be next to impossible without absolutely massive simplifications.

I don't know why you have no interest in video games, but if it's not medical or anything along those lines, KSP is arguably the best you can get as far as space exploration goes today.
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BigD145 wrote:
Steve Carey wrote:
Flamin_Jesus wrote:
Kerbal Space Program is all about building rockets and trying to reach other planets (While trying not to strand your heroic heros on the other side of the solar system, out of fuel, with no ISRU)


That's a computer game only right (I have zero interest in computer games and so am not familiar with KSP)?


That's too bad. KSP is stellar, in most definitions of the word. It's not your average computer game. You actually design a rocket in KSP, right down to the aerodynamics of each part it's composed of that is exposed to atmosphere. The computer does what you can't really do in a board game simulation. Want to know how retro sci-fi rocket ships would work in dense or thin atmosphere? You can actually find out. How about launching a Saturn V from the surface of the moon? Completely different launch profile to orbit. About the only thing it's missing is interstellar travel and rival space agencies.


It's worth noting that in order to truly achieve that, you'd need to mod the game: By default, the Kerbin system is scaled down to about 1/3rd (including gravity) of ours and air resistance is simplified for gameplay reasons.

That being said, you can install FAR (Ferram Aerospace Research) for a more realistic (and much less forgiving) aerodynamic model and one of any number of "real solar system" mods to get the gravity up.

Personally I find the tyranny of the rocket equation already depressing enough in the Kerbin system, but if you wanna punish yourself...
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Don Barree
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If anyone is interested, the Kerbal Space Program is now on sale for 40% off on Steam. The deal ens at 10:00 p.m. PDT on October 28.
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Mike Hoyt

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dbarree wrote:
If anyone is interested, the Kerbal Space Program is now on sale for 40% off on Steam. The deal ens at 10:00 p.m. PDT on October 28.


Sorry, not familiar with Steam. Would you have a link? Thanks
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René Schep
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Steam is a digital distributor of video games.

http://store.steampowered.com/app/220200/
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Mike Hoyt

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if I buy it, can I share it with my son? Move it to another computer?
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It's worth noting that in order to actually install and play Steam games you have to install and run the Steam client (I like the client, it's a convenient storefront/game library, but you should still be aware). If you don't want to use the Steam client, you could buy the game from GOG.com (which does its own regular sales), which allow you to download, install and run their games without an extra client (Although they do have an optional client as well, which I'm using).

Edit: Installing the game on multiple computers isn't an issue, but in the Steam version you'd either have to use the same Steam user account on all computers or enable family sharing. What doesn't work is playing the game on the same account on different computers at the same time (Unless all but one of them are offline).
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