[jhb_airlines] Re: FSX Official Add-On Acceleration

  • From: "bones" <bones@xxxxxxx>
  • To: <jhb_airlines@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 5 Nov 2007 20:24:21 -0000

I think the obsession with repaints shows that users really want to interact
with FS more but repainting is the only option left to most. The rest is now
too complex but, oddly, gauge design has gone from the realm of C++ geeks to
anyone willing to learn XML.

Over complex design for scenery has always been with us. The camps have
always been split on those who design for usability and those who design
because it is possible. I remember a train and church for FS4 with both
fully detailed on the inside - at which point I knew the designers had lost
the plot. Likewise in GMax someone made a fully working Wankel engine - a
brilliant technical exercise but as useful to FS as a chocolate fireguard.

In GMax you can do anything. Houses, aircraft, ships, sheds. You can design
a tower with desks and chairs in it, monitors and strip bays and even the
strips with data on them. Outside you can build the apron, runways, marker
boards, lighting and could even go down to drains, edging strips and blades
of grass. All technically possible but really rather pointless. I will admit
that even with the Laxey Wheel I had to stop getting over complex - it is
all too easy to get drawn into design accuracy and forget the aim of the

I admire those who build detailed airports but I'd far prefer seeing half
the detail and more time spent on getting the default airports more
accurate. It's bad that even in FSX basic airfield layouts are still wrong..


-----Original Message-----
From: jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Gerry Winskill
Sent: 05 November 2007 19:33
To: jhb_airlines@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [jhb_airlines] Re: FSX Official Add-On Acceleration

I agree with your observations on aircraft design. At present the
obsession seems to be with repaints. Even some of the complete aircraft
turn out to be someone else's with a new livery. In the case of the
Posky aircraft I've a feeling the painters have to issue a repaint as a
new aircraft.

Of course I can't have it both ways. Despite the number of aircraft in
my directory, I now limit myself to a couple for each category. All of
them use panels that I've heavilly modified, partly to cope with THTG
but also to incorporate my own Can't Do Without gauges. With a smaller
number in the fleet it then becomes manageable to flight test them all
fairly thoroughly, so that performance comes a lot closer to that
claimed in the model's spec. I've spent all of today tuning the Default
A321, finishing with an IVAO flight from Aldergrove to Tenerife South,
to check the fuel useage accuracy. Although that was satisfactorilly
within 5% of my calculated consumption it left me with another job. The
A321 is still a bit nose high at the correct, weight related, Vrefs.
Worse it becomes too sensitive in pitch at those low speeds, so the
drawing board comes out again tomorrow. Another enjoyable facet of the

Scenery is going to be interesting. I reported my recorded UK2000 Xtreme
low framerates on the Horizon Forum, where the GS acolytes dwell. So far
none have risen to the bait. The main problem is that GS seems to have
become obsessed with including everything technically possible in his
designs; hence the low framerates. In practice he's producing accurate
diaramas, rather than smoothly useable airfields. I'm more interested in
decent performance that in refuelling bowsers, caterting wagons,
automatic docking systems etc. What I really want are accurate airfield
layouts and lighting systems, with terminal buildings that reflect the
real ones, eg yours at Ronaldsway. Where the windows are glazed and
grockles wave at you from inside, the framerates plummet.

The airport scenery future is brighter for the work of designers like
Tony Meredith. His framerates are very acceptable. I guess he'll come up
to the buffers where airfield buildings are very individualistic. There
I hope the solution may lie with co-operation with object designers like
Ted Andrews, who enjoy building structures but not designing airfields.

Tony's attempts to convince others that there are fairly easy routes to
airfield design and Autogen creation are going down like a lead baloon
with the acolytes, who prefer to maintain a mistique that will, they
hope, preserve their lucrative Payware market.

I'm rooting for Tony!

Gerry Winskill

bones wrote:

>I tend to agree.
>Flight modelling has been less accurate since FS98 as the drive to
>eliminate tables in the .air file increases. FS2002 was OK but when
>FS2004 came out it required a distinct performance rewrite for aircraft
>- even more so in FSX. My feeling is that MS are turning FS into a game
>with accent on good visuals rather than accuracy of fluid dynamics.
>When design moved to GMax the integration of the panel into the MDL
>file saw a change in design production. It mostly ended the reign of
>the individual designer in favour of group co-operation and, to some
>extent, a swing to more payware designs over freeware. The increased
>complexity in aircraft building has seen a marked decline in the solo
>I think the same is now going to happen with scenery design. If a
>complete airport rebuild is required my hunch is that teams will do
>these rather than individuals. The individual user may end up doing
>nothing more than plonking objects into the scenery using EZBuilder
>because the tools needed to create something more complex will not be
>Back in FS98 days there were a huge number of design tools around.
>There were still a good number for FS2002 with AFCAD, GMax, LWMDrawer,
>LandCalc, Autogen Annotator, Ground2K4 being essential for any serious
>project. If such tools don't get developed for FSX then the design base
>will shrink - and I see little evidence of this as FSX approaches its
>first year in operation.
>Once design goes from the individual to the payware teams there is a
>marked drop in coverage of designs. We saw this with aircraft back in
>FS2002 as the design teams mostly concentrated on endless Boeing or
>Airbus aircraft. If scenery goes the same way and smaller airports get
>ignored in favour of the big international ports then the FS world will
>truly start to shrink.
>I still watch the development forums but I suspect design peaked with
>FS2002/4. I doubt we will see such variety of aircraft and scenery
>again because it is now too complex (and time consuming) to build the
>stuff. If a new release of FS is imminent designers dread the idea that
>their work becomes redundant so fewer are committed to start any work.
>Time will tell but I suspect MS are no longer wanting the enthusiast
>user dabbling in FS design - and I am sure it will be their loss.
>-----Original Message-----
>From: jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>[mailto:jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Peter Dodds
>Sent: 05 November 2007 14:01
>To: jhb_airlines@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>Cc: pdodds@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>Subject: [jhb_airlines] Re: FSX Official Add-On Acceleration
>I have reached a mental freeze on FS also.  I am not going to proceed
>with FSX in any serious way. My next move after FS9, if there is one,
>will probably be to change hobby.  It is just getting daft.
>There is no improvement in flight models, airport scenery is still
>mostly a blank runway in the middle of a desert and third party
>developers ar not being ignored they are being shafted - probably
>deliberately unless they sign up to the MSFS partnership programme
>which removes their independence.

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