When my brother plays Kerbal Space Program, he uses the knowledge he has gained from studying aerospace engineering and actually working for NASA to meticulously create properly-functioning, realistic spacecraft that apply real-world concepts of interplanetary flight.
I just toss a dude onto a bunch of fuel tanks, stick the biggest engine I have on the bottom, and hope it doesn't explode.
I made my first orbital satellite before he did.
Score one for doing science the Soviet way! Also Kerbal Space Program is an awesome game that you should totally get because it's awesome. Just be ready to learn about rocket staging, and god help you if you don't. Also, a bit about propulsion and the point of diminishing returns in spacecraft design.