This Page will explain how to install a typical Addon to Kerbal Space Program.
What Are Addons
If you have been playing Kerbal Space Program for any length of time, and have gone on the forums blogs or watched any of the tutorial youtube videos, you have probably heard of Addons. Addons, mods or plugins are modifications to the official version of the game. They either add new parts, systems and mechanics to the game or replace existing ones. Addons are generally made by the community rather than the developers and can greatly enhance the playing experience. Due to their widespread popularity, Squad offers an official website for exchanging them, the Kerbal SpacePort. Addons are great for people who have been playing the vanilla version of KSP for a while, and are looking for more of a challenge.
To read More About Addons refer to the Addon page.
- Length: 5–10 minutes
- Difficulty: Medium
- For version: Every version
If you are new to KSP, or the Addon part of KSP specifically, some of the terminology may be confusing.
Kerbal Spaceport - Kerbal Spaceport is the old version of the official site for downloading Addons. The new official site for KSP Addons can be found here.
Vanilla KSP - A KSP game without any Addons. (Basically what you get when you download the game from squad.)
Step 1 - Choosing an Addon
This is important because each addon will change the game in different ways. Make sure that your computer's graphics card and memory are in good standing, or the game will lag. An example of a plugin that might do this is the Kerbal Beautification Addon. Choosing an addon that will be fun and interesting is important. There are many addons to choose from. One of the best ways to figure out what you are looking for is to just read blogs, forums, and watch YouTube reviews. Some of the more popular mods are MechJeb, Remote Tech 2, Ferram Aerospace Research, Deadly Re-entry, along with countless other mods.
For the sake of simplicity, we are going to install MechJeb, one of the most popular addons for Kerbal Space Program. Mechjeb is an autopilot system, hence the name "Mechanical Jebediah". Besides allowing for automated maneuvers it also gives you a ton of data on the characteristics of your spacecraft that Vanilla KSP does not have, like Delta V, Thrust to weight ratios, burn times, orbital data, and much, much more. So even if you are not interested in using the autopilot function it can be a very helpful mod to make you a better pilot overall.
Step 2 - Downloading the Addon
Click on the 'download now' button on the addon page and a download should start. The download should be in your downloads, if not then check where the download took place.
Step 3 - Placing the addon in your game
Click on the Addon's file, usually a ZIP file, and you should see a folder with the name: 'MechJeb2' if you downloaded the most recent version. Locate the KSP folder and click on GameData. You should see a "Squad" folder if you haven't modded your KSP version yet. Now drag your 'MechJeb2' folder into the game folder and tada! You have now successfully installed an addon. Close the KSP folder and the addon folder if you wish and now you can start the game and enjoy the addon!
In case you mess up anything make sure you backup your KSP folder beforehand. There are hundreds of mods out there so go check the forums, the spaceport, and even youtube videos to give you an idea of what mods you can choose!