Kerbal Space Program Review
 CHEATfactor Game Review by:  Joe Sinicki Reviewed on: PC 

Welcome to our CHEATfactor Game Review of Kerbal Space Program. We review the game and then factor in how the available cheats affect the overall game experience. For better or worse, our reviews will help you decide whether or not to use cheats when playing the game.

If there's any justice in the world, Kerbal Space Program will catch on in the same way that the original Sim City did when I was a kid. It's light-hearted and fun approach to what's really a complex and even intimidating subject matter makes you somehow forget that despite all the fun you're having failing over and over again in often spectacular fashion, you're actually learning. It's a game that may try to make you believe it's a dumb physics engine but really packs a remarkable punch. As a guy who has always enjoyed science and who will soon be looking to teach his eventual kids fun ways to get into similar subjects, Kerbal Space Program is nothing short of a marvelous achievement. Plus, you know - the explosions are awesome. a rocket that can lift off the ground and function.
Kerbal Space Program Review Screenshot

Finally out of it's beta stage, the goal of Kerbal Space Program is as simple as you make it. Your first goal is to simply build a rocket that can lift off the ground and function. Then it's to get to space, then to stay in orbit and after all that you'll want to get to the moon and then home again. While this may seem like an easy task if you've played any other space sims in the past, it's not all black and white with KSP. You're going to fail time and time again; often in spectacular fashion. It took a long time for my rocket to even lift off when I got to the launch pad, let alone how many times I sent so many poor, brave Kerbals to their fiery death shortly after leaving the ground. For each time I failed (and it was often), I was still having a ton of fun and never got frustrated with my lack of knowledge of rocket science.

That perhaps, above all is what makes KSP such a fun experience, it encourages creativity, doesn't punish failure and as a result every accomplishment is a thing to celebrate. Thanks to it's remarkable physics engine you're free to build to your heart's content and regardless of what sort of monstrosity you build (a lot of my rockets felt like that time Homer Simpson built a car), you can then bring it to the launch pad and see how far you can take it. If you do fail though, KSP makes it easy to jump back in and address problems since you can return to the launchpad at any time and rethinkk your design. It's because of all of this that when I finally succeeded in any way, it was a celebration. Hell, the first time I even got off the ground I jumped and screamed in my computer room regardless of the fact that it blew up long before it could reach orbit. The game also doesn't hold your hand but thanks to it's smart tutorial system it isn't afraid to lend a hand when it's needed.

You're free to do almost whatever you want from the moment you start up KSP. Those who just want to build will want to jump right into the sandbox mode where everything is immediately unlocked and the only obstacle you have is just how creative you can be. Those who are looking for the full KSP experience though will want to check out the career mode which has you learning new technologies to better advance your space program. It can be a bit of a tedious process, especially when you're just looking to build but it's rewarding none the less. You're also in charge of all of the funding, hiring and research for your space program so there's a lot that can go wrong but also a lot that you can be proud of when you do have a successful launch. Science mode is a lot similar to career mode but removes things like funding and hiring to lessen some of the stakes but it also lessens some of the fun at the same time.

...does a great job of showcasing emotion...
Kerbal Space Program Review Screenshot

There's no voice acting in KSP but the game does a great job of showcasing emotion regardless. Every grunt of approval that my Kerbal staff let out, I knew exactly what they meant and sadly every whine of pain from a dying Kerbal was just as easily understood. The cartoonish style of a game that deals with such a heavy subject matter gives everything a light-hearted feel and hardly makes you feel like you're learning real rocket science. How well is it done? I can see the Kerbals on their own Saturday morning cartoon show, think of it as this generation's Bill Nye.

What's most exciting about Kerbal Space Program though by far is the possibilities that come with it. An experience with rocket science that's this accessible can only do great things in getting kids into science. They'll come for the building and explosions but they'll come back to learn how to make their crafts more successful. It's for that reason that I have to recommend everyone at least experience KSP in some way. It's one of the most unique and well put together experiences I've ever put my hands on. It's a brave new frontier indeed.

Overall:  9/10 Presentation: 8 Gameplay: 10 
Lasting Appeal: 10 CHEATfactor: 7 
CHEATS USED: Add Money, Add Science

It's hard to discount a trainer that has the feature to add science like the KSP trainer does. With the trainer from Cheat Happens you'll have access to the ability to add money and and add science in career mode, which should help you unlock more parts and build a better rocket faster.
Stick with Cheat Happens for more on KSP!