Part 1: Spring 1957: Pre-Vote
Now to get things started for reals, here's the setup we're using for the game. Relevant information shown on the screen:
Our names up at the top: Since the very beginning of the first turn is always the same, please pick a name appropriate for all of you and I'll put that one in there instead of 'Goons', unless you all really like that, I suppose.
Game Level: We're both at level one. This makes it slightly less likely that things will go horrifically wrong at every possible moment, but that'll still probably happen.
Astro/Cosmonaut selection Level: Again, level one. This makes the stats given to you on the selection screen... still fairly useless, but a little better. We'll cross that bridge when it comes up.
Basic Model, Historical Roster: Basic Model sets up both sides to be completely the same aside from equipment names. Historical Roster gives us mostly not made up men to hire. The other game Model, Historical. makes American stuff slightly more expensive and Soviet stuff slightly more likely to explode. Since money is hard to come by and explosions are common anyway, Basic tends to work a little better for a regular style game.
Enough about that mess, though. Let's go!
US Turn One Start!
The first thing you'll receive every turn is a screen telling you the Season and Year, followed by the news. Right now, the news has nothing of any importance (to us, at least. Civil Rights are generally considered important), this will change as early as the next season. Speaking of Years and Seasons, it's currently Spring of 1957. Each year has two seasons in it, and we have through 1977 to get someone on the moon and back. This gives the game a length of 40-42 turns maximum, though it generally won't go that far.
Welcome to The Cape, ladies and gentlemen. This will be your base of operations for this here Space Race. Let's take a moment to get acquainted, shall we? First thing to look at is in the bottom right corner; this is how much money you have on hand. Now then, this next statement is very important, so I'm going to put it on its own line to make sure you people read it. Sirens might also be employed.
Your budget is only given to you once a year, every spring. If you blow all your money in Spring, you're done for the year. Also there are only two seasons to a year, Spring and Fall.
With that in mind, you currently have 60 MegaBucks to work with, the standard starting budget for all space programs. What can you do with that? At the moment, jack shit because you don't have any programs purchased. That leads me to the next subject of interest...
The Administration building! Clicking on it gives you the menu shown in the second picture. Here's a qucik overview of the options, most of which we'll look at more in depth later on when they have something of use in them.
Budget Office: This screen will eventually be full of fun graphs comparing US Prestige, Expenditures, and Budgeting with the Soviet version. Since nothing has happened yet, it contains nothing of note other than the Soviets get a bit more seed money to start out with than the US does.
Hardware Purchase: This is where you go to make you initial investment in any equipment projects that you wish. If you would like to make a purchase, refer to the equipment list post to make your decisions and let me know what to buy for you. In future updates, I'll keep an ongoing status list of what projects you guys have bought into and any other appropriate stats so you don't need to keep running back to that list unless you want to buy something new.
Future Missions: Here is where you go to schedule missions to occur next season. Anything scheduled will always happen next season, so keep that in mind for any long term goals you start formulating. You could schedule something to happen next season, but I can guarantee you it will be a horrific failure and huge starting setback, so don't do it. We'll talk a little more about missions once you get one schedules up, but for the most part you just schedule it and hope for the best.
Astronaut Recruiting: Here is where you hire your men... just not now. There aren't any yet, and won't be until Spring of 1958, so we'll talk about this then.
The rest are just, in order, Options, Save, and leave the menu. For the first season, this is one half of the important screens. The other one is the following:
Research And Development. This is where you go to dump some more money each season to make your equipment less likely to be deathtraps. You are allowed to buy into a project and them immediately dump some R%D money into it, and would be wise to do so as most things you buy start with horribly low Safety Factors. If you want to research something, include
it into your vote on what to do including how many teams you want to put towards researching it. More teams means better results, but it costs more as well. Cost per team is included in the Equipment infodump post, and I'll include it in the 'Current Status' segment of your updates.
You cannot research anything you have not yet purchased.
Most of the other buildings aren't particularly important right now, but there are two more things you should know:
You currently have a single Launch Facility. You can buy up to two more for 20MB a pop. This price will never go up at any point.
This is what you currently know about possible landing zones on the Moon. It'll be important to get this a little higher than 55% at some point, as this will affect your ability to, you know, land on the moon. Lunar Flybys, Manned Lunar Passes, and Lunar Probes will all add to this assuming they're at least somewhat successful.
That should be all of the relevant information you need to start voting on your first actions in game. I will leave you with a little extra advice; your first major focus should be on getting that budget raised, and you can only do that by launching successful missions. If you can't get a good amount of MegaBucks coming in, you'll quickly fall behind and then it'll be very, very difficult to catch back up again.
If there's anything you would like further information on, please ask away and I'll answer to the best of my ability... without hindering my own efforts too much in the process, of course.
Status Report: Spring 1957, US Side
Purchased Projects and relevant information
No projects currently active.
Missions you could attempt
None. You have no projects.
Missions to occur this season
No scheduled launches.
Voting for Name/Turn Actions will be ended at 08:00PM EST on Thursday, Feb 17th.