Kerbal Space Program’s 0.24 update, which was pushed back so that the budgets and contracts update would be put in the game at the same time, is nearing completion.
“On the development side, we now have ahead of us what is unmistakably the last stretch for Contracts and Budgets on this update, so we shouldn’t be far now from a system which will obviously still need a lot of content added to it, sure, but should be able to handle just about any idea we can throw at it,” Squad said in a blog update.
It might not officially be released yet, but you should read why we think it's worth picking up in Early Access with our Kerbal Space Program review.
Update: Squad have recently expanded Kerbal's Career mode with optional missions via the First Contract update.
“If we had released Contracts as they were last week, back in the days of 0.17, it would have been pretty ok, and about on par with the rest of the game,” the post continues. “However, because everything else is so much further developed, every new feature must be implemented, from scratch, up to the same levels of quality as the rest of the game, which is a lot of work to cram into a single update.”
Squad was going to release contracts and budgets separately, but that plan was scrapped when it became clear that the two features relied on each other. “The two systems, while technically separate, were one big gameplay mechanic,” the post explains.
So Squad has used the extended time to work on both features and create enough budget functionality to give contracts a “purpose”. The developer is now looking at scope completion, though it remains a few updates away. That means every major system will be implemented, though there will still be plenty of room for expansion.
That won’t mean the game is finished though.
“Reaching Scope Completion does not mean, by any means, that we’re done with the game, or even that the features we have are now finished and beyond improvement,” said Squad. “Quite the opposite in fact. It means there are (or will be, as we’re not quite there yet) no more base systems left to do, and from there on, the focus shifts to improvements, optimization, and content.”
So there’s plenty more to do, but KSP is starting to reach the point where it has been shaped into what the finished product will look like. “We're getting there. Perhaps not as quickly as we would like, but we are getting where we want to be.”