Campaign: Space Race

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Age of Rocketry Campaigns Age of Satellites


The Age of Rocketry sparked the imaginations of Kerbals everywhere. What was once a dream was becoming reality. The race was on to put the first things into orbit. Robert Kerman and his intrepid Kerbicans aimed to launch the first Kerbal-made object into Kerbin orbit... that is, until the Kerbiets behind their Iron Kertain launched their Stayputnik into orbit. The Space Race had begun! Not to be outdone, the great Robert Kerman with his new Kerbal Space Program planned to get the first man into space... but they were outdone yet again by the Kerbiets. But in the end, the Kerbal Space Program would have the final word and launch the first Kerbal into a sustained orbit around Kerbin and bring him back safely. His legacy, the Kerbal Space Program, would come to dominate the Space Race from that point forward, but not without its share of semi-expendable half-volunteered core of Kerbonauts sacrificing their lives for the scientific good of all Kerbalkind as it began its race to the Mun.

This campaign is designed to present you with a mission manifest that will allow you to accomplish the final goal of reliably launching the Stayputnik satellite into orbit, dipping your fingers into space, and your first manned orbit and safe return.

Missions are based on the Sputnik 1, Vostok 1 and Project Mercury of the 50's and early 60's.


Length: 1.5-2 hours

Difficulty: 2/10 (Novice)

Skills needed:

For version: Every version (tested on 0.20.2 - 1.0.2)

Recommended mods

  • Historical Rockets, Probes, and Stations series - This series of mods has accurate reproductions of early Soviet spacecraft:
    • Salyut Stations-Soyuz Ferries - Includes an accurate Vostok spacecraft
    • Soviet Probes - Includes an array of accurate early Soviet probes, including Sputnik 1
    • Soviet Rockets - Includes accurate reproductions of the R-7, Molniya, and Proton rockets over the years
  • Bluedog Design Bureau - This mod features many, many American spacecraft and launchers, including Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, Vanguard, Thor, Redstone, Atlas, Titan, Juno, Athena, Delta, and Saturn, plus Agena and the Manned Orbiting Laboratory. It allows for the creation of several unmade variants of Gemini, including the Big Gemini, Advanced Gemini, and Blue Gemini, as well as variants of Apollo from the popular alternate history timeline Eyes Turned Skyward, including the Block III, Block III+, Block IV, and AARDV (Aardvark), plus the Saturn IC and the possibility to create a multitude of Saturn IB and Saturn V variants. Previously, we had recommended Frizzank Aeronautics and Space Administration, but this mod has not been updated since KSP 1.0.5, and in the current version, the LEM landing legs are broken.


Stayputnik, the First Satellite

Launch a Two-Stage Liquid Fuel Rocket into Orbit with a Satellite or Stayputnik 1

  1. Reach Low Kerbin Orbit (70km - 200km)
  2. Decouple probe from launch stages, extend antennae

(Tip: as your launches become more complex, it's usually a good idea to test them out to make sure your staging is set correctly.)
(Tip: try establishing an action group to extend the antennas.)

Kostok I, the First Kerbal in Space

Perform the first Orbital Flight piloted by a Kerbal [Kerbeit].

  • Spacecraft must contain: 1 Mk1 Command Pod, parachute system
  • [Optional] Style the launch vehicles after the real-life Soviet Vostok-K.
  1. Launch into a trajectory with an Apoapsis >70 km.
  2. Burn prograde at apoapsis until the periapsis forms above the surface. Stop and note remaining fuel.
  3. Using <1/2 remaining fuel, burn into an orbit with periapsis >70 km.
  4. After completing at least 1 orbit, burn retrograde for a return trajectory.
  5. Yuri Kerman must return safely. This is assumed for all future missions unless otherwise specified - you don't want to scare off volunteers, especially this early in the space program.
  6. Land on land (that's how Vostok 1 landed in real life).

Project Moho: John Kerman, the First Kerbican to go 'round the World

  • Perform a manned orbital flight [Kerbican].
  • [Optional] Style the launch vehicles after the real-life American Atlas LV-3B.
  1. Launch into a >70 km orbit.
  2. Complete 11 orbits.
  3. Land in water (Bonus points if it is near the Kerbal Space Center).
  4. [Optional] Feel free to go through the rest of the Moho program. This includes one more Redstone flight, and four Atlas flights.

Final Word

After the successful launch of John Kerman into a controlled orbit around Kerbin, the Kerbals overcame engineering challenges. They knew they could achieve their dreams of bringing their technology to space, beginning the Age of Satellites.