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The Soviets did a lot of good things with their space program. The R-7 was the first and still is one of the best satellite launchers, the Venera probes were cool and got us a lot of data, the RD-180 gets high performance through weird metallurgic sorcery, etc. Unfortunately, a lot of the stuff they did was also crap. Stuff like the N-1 comes immediately to mind, but there were others. Let's take a look at Vostok, the first manned spacecraft. It is commonly compared to the American Mercury spacecraft. Both had similar purposes; to get a man into space, keep him there for a short time, and