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Biome

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In Kerbal Space Program a biome is a geographic area on the surface of a celestial body typically corresponding with types of geology like mountains or craters. This is in contrast to the real meaning of the term in which biomes are biotic communities in contiguous areas with similar climatic conditions and organism populations.

The results of science activities often differ when performed in different biomes, and thus provide more opportunities to earn Science Points in Career Mode to research further along the technology tree. In Sandbox, even the text descriptions from experiments are unavailable, rendering biomes unimportant. For details and tips on how to get as much Science as possible from exploring biomes (and where to find water in a Mountain biome, for example), see the Science Tutorial.

Areas belonging to a biome may be geographically separate, but they're not considered different areas. For example, after performing an EVA Report at Kerbin's north polar IceCap biome, performing one from the southern IceCap gives the same results (and Science Points) as if it had been performed a second time in the northern IceCap.

With version 0.90 biomes were added to all celestial bodies which have a solid surface, which excepts Jool and the Sun. Before that only the Kerbin system - Kerbin, Mun and Minmus - had biomes. Jool's moon Laythe and the planet Eve have bodies of water and science activities performed in them stated as being from "Laythe's oceans" and "Eve's oceans". However, this was just the effect of the situation "SrfSplashed" for a splashdown versus the usual "SrfLanded" surface landing.

With versions 1.2 and 1.2.1 biome maps were slightly overhauled.

Kerbol

The star Kerbol (officially called “The Sun”) has no biomes. Any attempt to land on its surface will result in the craft overheating, and ultimately exploding.

Moho

Moho has 12 biomes. It is one of three bodies (the other being Kerbin andIke) that have their own North and South Pole biome. It is dottet with Minor Craters and features four distinct Lowland Biomes. The Mohole also features as a Biome within the North Pole with the Mohole's Rim being a seperate Biome.

Moho biome map as of 1.2
  • North Pole
  • Northern Sinkhole Ridge
  • Northern Sinkhole
  • Highlands
  • Midlands
  • Minor Craters
  • Central Lowlands
  • Western Lowlands
  • South Western Lowlands
  • South Eastern Lowlands
  • Canyon
  • South Pole

Eve

Eve has 15 Biomes with their own science to be collected. It's main features are a large Explodium Sea with some scattered Islands and Shallow areas as well as a Main Continent and Poles. Within the Continent lie three large bodies of liquid, one being a Crater Lake. There are also areas covered with Impact Ejecta.

Eve biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Lowlands
  • Midlands
  • Highlands
  • Foothills
  • Peaks
  • Impact Ejecta
  • Explodium Sea
  • Akatsuki Lake
  • Shallows
  • Crater Lake
  • Western Sea
  • Olympus
  • Craters
  • Eastern Sea

Gilly

With only 3 biomes, the moon of Eve, called Gilly, has the fewest number of biomes.

Gilly biome map as of 1.2.1
  • Lowlands
  • Midlands
  • Highlands

Kerbin

The planet Kerbin has 11 biomes, plus a large number of surface-only “location biomes” comprising Kerbal Space Center. Roughly 60% Kerbin's surface is Water biome. Grasslands and Highlands biomes cover most of the land area. Along with Moho and Ike it has distinct polar biomes.

Kerbin is the only celestial body with location biomes: the grounds of KSC and the many structures it is composed of. Each count as a biome only with experiments performed on the surface. KSC is within a Shores biome, so experiments while flying at any altitude over the KSC count as Shores. However, it is possible to get an "EVA Report while flying over" the area, either while jumping, grabbing a ladder on a craft, or sitting on a EAS-1 External Command Seat.

Kerbin biome map as of 1.2
  • Ice Caps
  • Northern Ice Shelf
  • Southern Ice Shelf
  • Tundra
  • Highlands
  • Mountains
  • Grasslands
  • Deserts
  • Badlands
  • Shores
  • Water


KSC location biome list

Notes: While the per-area biomes are available from the start of a new career game, the per-structure biomes will not be found until each facility is upgraded once or twice. To access each per-structure biome, your craft needs to be touching each new building.

  1. In career mode, the Astronaut Complex location biome is available with a first-level building if in contact with the structure, or anywhere on its hex after the first upgrade.
  2. The South Complex location biome is only accessible with a second-level VAB, making the science available there missable content.

Mun

The biggest moon of Kerbin, called the Mun, has a total of 17 biomes, 7 of which are uniquely named major craters. The Mun has the largest amount of biomes in the Kerbol System. Most of the surface area belongs to the Midlands biome followed by the Highlands. Canyon biomes extend off a few major craters.

Mun biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Polar Lowlands
  • Polar Crater
  • Highlands
  • Highland Craters
  • Midlands
  • Midland Craters
  • Lowlands
  • Northern Basin
  • Farside Basin
  • Northwest Crater
  • East Farside Crater
  • Canyons
  • Farside Crater
  • East Crater
  • Twin Craters
  • Southwest Crater

Minmus

The moon of Kerbin, called Minmus, has a total of 9 biomes. The most distinctive quality of Minmus's biomes is the variety of Flats, which in-game text describe as “lake beds”. They are almost perfectly flat and may represent salt flats. Roughly two-thirds of the surface area is irregular terrain transitioning between Highlands, Midlands, and Lowlands with Slopes in-between.

Minmus biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Lowlands
  • Midlands
  • Highlands
  • Slopes
  • Flats
  • Lesser Flats
  • Great Flats
  • Greater Flats

Duna

The planet Duna has 12 Biomes. Within the generic mix of Low-, Mid- and Highlands lie various Basins and Canyons with some scattered craters. The most dominant feature is the Midland Sea, which spans half the Planet. The Poles also include seperate Highlands and Craters

Duna biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Polar Highlands
  • Polar Craters
  • Highlands
  • Midlands
  • Lowlands
  • Craters
  • Midland Sea
  • Northern Basin
  • Southern Basin
  • Northern Shelf
  • Midland Canyon
  • Eastern Canyon
  • Western Canyon

Ike

The moon of Duna, called Ike, has 8 biomes. It is one of three bodies (the other being Moho and Kerbin) that has their own North and South Pole biome.

Ike biome map as of 1.2
  • Polar Lowlands
  • Midlands
  • Lowlands
  • Eastern Mountain Ridge
  • Western Mountain Ridge
  • Central Mountain Range
  • South Eastern Mountain Range
  • South Pole

Dres

The planet Dres has 8 biomes.

Dres biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Highlands
  • Midlands
  • Lowlands
  • Ridges
  • Impact Ejecta
  • Impact Craters
  • Canyons

Jool

The planet Jool has no biomes, since it is a gas giant and therefore landing on its surface is not possible.

Laythe

The first moon of Jool, called Laythe, has 10 biomes. Laythe exists of a huge ocean, called The Sagen Sea, with some small Dunes and Shores biomes. It also has bay, called the Cresent Bay and a Poles biome. Laythe consists primarily of a huge ocean, called The Sagen Sea, with another ocean called the DeGrasse Sea and some small Peaks, Dunes and Shores biomes. It also has a Poles biome.

Laythe biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Shores
  • Dunes
  • Crescent Bay
  • The Sagen Sea
  • Crater Island
  • Shallows
  • Crater Bay
  • DeGrasse Sea
  • Peaks

Vall

The second moon of Jool, called Vall, has 9 biomes. It has mostly large Lowlands broken up by Midlands and Highlands with some high Mountains in between. There are four distinct Basins and Poles available as well.

Vall biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Highlands
  • Midlands
  • Lowlands
  • Mountains
  • Northeast Basin
  • Northwest Basin
  • Southern Basin
  • Southern Valleys

Tylo

The third moon of Jool, called Tylo, has 9 biomes. It mostly consists of generic Low-, Mid- and Highlands with some Mara and Minor Craters scattered in between. There are four distinct Craters. Previously three of these Craters were simply named Major Crater, the reason for this oddity not being known.

Tylo biome map as of 1.2
  • Highlands
  • Midlands
  • Lowlands
  • Mara
  • Minor Craters
  • Gagarin Crater
  • Grissom Crater
  • Galileio Crater
  • Tycho Crater

Bop

The fourth moon of Jool, called Bop, has 5 biomes.

Bop biome map as of 1.2.1
  • Poles
  • Slopes
  • Peaks
  • Valley
  • Ridges

Pol

The fifth moon of Jool, called Pol, has 4 biomes.

Pol biome map as of 1.2.1
  • Poles
  • Lowlands
  • Midlands
  • Highlands

Eeloo

The planet Eeloo has a total of 11 biomes.

Eeloo biome map as of 1.2
  • Poles
  • Northern Glaciers
  • Midlands
  • Lowlands
  • Ice Canyons
  • Highlands
  • Craters
  • Fragipan
  • Babbage Patch
  • Southern Glaciers
  • Mu Glacier

References

  • Answer in “List of places and biomes in KSP (planetary geology & geography) - UPDATING FOR v0.90” by Olympic1

See Also