Home » Construction Simulator: Spaceport expansion impressions — Scout Summary

Construction Simulator: Spaceport expansion impressions — Scout Summary

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator Scout Summary

The Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator is the largest and most elaborate bit of DLC that has come to the sim since its initial release back in 2022.

After spending ten hours completing just the first mission of one section of the Campaign, it’s safe to say that there’s a lot of ground to cover before the space complex you’re tasked with putting together is cleared to shoot for the stars. That said, playing through this reminded me of why I loved Construction Simulator when it first released and why it’s arguably even better to return to now.

“Go Big, or Go Home”

That’s the title of the very first mission in the Science and Technologies section of the Campaign. It does a great job at describing this expansion as a whole.

Unlike the Airfield DLC that came out a while back, the new Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator has been regulated to an entirely new map, taking the story of the sim to a tropical region somewhere in South America.

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator dialogue
The snark and drama of the space race is quite prevalent here in Construction Simulator.

This hot, seaside sector of the continent is home to Beyond Sphere Innovations, a new start-up that’s trying to get rockets into the atmosphere.

However, quite similar to the many real-world space programs, it’s been hit with quite a few setbacks due to the initial contractors abandoning the project, leaving the personnel to deal with the wrath of investors who are threatening to pull out of the deal.

Thus, you’re tasked with picking up the pieces of the deal and pushing to finish the construction of a Spaceport, all culminating with a big finale mission of assembling the company’s first rocket. Before getting there, however, there are two sections worth of campaign missions to complete, each containing three missions (Science and Technologies along with Economy and Spacecraft.)

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator map
Don’t let the small map of Spaceport fool you; it contains a dense package of missions to complete.

While this comes to a seemingly small total of seven missions, trust me when I say this is no walk in the park.

Right from the very beginning as you’re creating a new scenario to play the expansion, you’re warned that this is aimed at “advanced players.” Even the game is expecting you to have a great handle on its mechanics before attempting this most treacherous venture into the ‘final frontier.’

I wasn’t kidding earlier when I mentioned that it took me a whopping ten hours to complete just the first campaign mission; so I believe that forewarning is quite warranted.

Breaking ground

In the ‘Go Big or Go Home’ mission, you’re tasked with constructing the new Research Centre for the scientists to conduct various projects.

The aforementioned complexity of the overall campaign is put on full display in just this mission alone, as the very first task has you excavating grounds of the foundation of the research centre. There’s an exceptionally large pit that’s been mostly dug out, yet it still needs to be finished properly so everything can be level.

After about a half hour of trying to move the considerable amount of earth myself, I called it quits and opted to skip the section.

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator digging
Within just my first half hour, I found out why the former contractor decided to leave the project.

The next was to drill into the ground nearby in order to sink in two pillars. As it turns out, drilling is yet another ‘advanced’ mechanic of Construction Simulator, as warned in the in-game manual. I concur, because I skipped this section too after several minutes since despite seemingly making progress, I struggled with fully completing the task.

I know, I’m off to a fantastic start here. But, thankfully, I didn’t have to skip the other sections, although I wanted to considering the immense amount of time each task was taking.

The other aspects of the job involved a lot of cement pouring, crane operation, and gravel spreading. Overall, these operations weren’t as complicated as the first two, but considering the vast scale of the project, they absolutely took a lot of time to complete.

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion active construction
Mankind didn’t touch the stars without perseverance, which is exactly what’s needed to get through the large jobs of Spaceport.

It didn’t take me long to notice the apparent strategy with approaching all of the campaign missions in the Spaceport expansion was to automate tasks where you can (like having job materials delivered to the site for a fee), or simply grab a friend or two to really carve through each job. Either that, or simply play a chunk of a single mission at a time to stop it from feeling so monumental.

Making it work

What playing through this first mission also taught me is that while these big jobs do appear to pay well, the amount of capital needed to complete them is large, too.

For instance, Go Big or Go Home provided me with a payout of 1,076,554 credits; you start the campaign with 500,000. After all the costs I incurred throughout my playthrough of the mission, I ended it with 1,038,102 credits.

This isn’t a huge difference compared to the promised payment, especially considering I skipped the first two sections of the mission, but it does provide at least an idea of how these missions won’t have you swimming in a wad of cash on their own.

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator on PC.
Getting to space is expensive, even when you’re still on the ground.

Thankfully, just like on the other maps, there are still smaller contract jobs to take care of at any given time to boost your XP and amount of credits. I think it’s fair to say they can also serve as a way to break up the monotony of trying to carve through the larger missions, or at least serve as smaller, more approachable tasks to handle when a shorter gameplay session is needed.

The little things add up

The Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator officially promises “40+ hours” of gameplay thanks to the vastness of its missions. That “+” is quite appropriate, seeing that it took me 10 hours to finish just one.

The actual new map is rather small, funnily enough. It reminds me a lot of SpaceX’s own spaceport in Boca Chica, Texas, from the scenery right down to the characteristics of it being a coastal-based space operation. I also have to mention how fitting of a coincidence it is that the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator is releasing just days after SpaceX completed the second test flight of its prodigious Starship project.

Indeed, this expansion hits the mark in terms of realism. Practically every space program in the real-world has suffered through financial constraints, ballooning deadlines, and a seemingly never-ending stream of chaos both large and small.

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator vehicles.
Hauling these components of a giant satellite dish well into the evening was one of the first real signs of Spaceport’s new Research Center finally coming together.

That said, just getting the components together here on Earth is a gargantuan feat within itself. There’s a million simulators out there that focus on the construction of the space vehicles, along with the actual exploration of the cosmos above.

Therefore, this experience here in Construction Simulator is a neat change of pace to have a hand with all the groundwork needed to make those dreams come true.

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator on PC.
I truly felt a wave of relief by the time this mission was completed. Yet, there’s still so much to unpack (and put together).

Construction Simulator has come a long way since launch. The dev team at Weltenbauer has made a range of improvements such as better simulation of terrain deformation and soil behaviour. I noticed that pouring earthworks looks more authentic now, not to mention it behaves more intuitively. I was able to use the immense weight of a dump truck to help spread the gravel around after pouring it.

With the Spaceport providing such a huge amount of new content then, it’s almost fair to call this a separate game rather than just another add-on.

Screenshot of the Spaceport expansion for Construction Simulator on PC cosmos.
The cosmos are calling.

Nevertheless, again, Spaceport is fittingly the largest expansion that Construction Simulator has received yet and sets the bar high for future projects, whether they be more add-ons for this iteration of the sim or an entirely new entry in the series.

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Scout Summary is a series dedicated to providing a review-like report of games and their DLC when, despite not having been fully completed, have already shown off a significant portion of their mechanics. Thus, these reports highlight the visited aspects of the content and summarise the writer’s overall feelings of the project. Or, you can just call these mini reviews/impressions…but that’s less fun!