[jhb_airlines] Re: More Christmas Deals!

  • From: "Bones" <bones@xxxxxxx>
  • To: <jhb_airlines@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 13 Dec 2006 11:29:50 -0000

Heh, heh.

I don't think FSX will flop in the drastic way that FS2000 did although it
may not gain classic status as (IMHO) FS4, FS98 and FS2002 did.

FS2000 shouldn't have bombed but it did. Looking back it had a lot going for
it - especially the round Earth modelling and terrain mesh. It should have
had FS98 users with their pyramid mountains moving over in droves. No doubt
MS thought so and, looking back, you wonder why everyone chose to stick with
the flat Earth modelling in FS98. They did though - and it wasn't until
FS2002 came out that users gradually migrated.

In truth FS2000 was a dog to run. It was slow and it developed no 3rd party
support - especially the tools to make scenery. There was a utility called
FSTerrain or similar that you could use to extrude terrain from a 256 colour
greyscale bitmap but it was a pig to use and all to easy to end up with
stepped hills if you stretched the contour banding too much. It took me a
week to make one small 1nm x 1nm section of the Isle of Man. It looked
tremendous but it also killed the frame rate stone dead.

Back with FS98 a whole raft of tools had evolved and designers were
comfortable with them. As none worked in FS2000 designers were loathe to
give them up and start again from scratch. Maybe more significantly no-one
really developed any tools for FS2000 and without these the users are
hamstrung.

FSX will fare better than that as tools are already available. Scenery may
be stagnant for a while but I'm sure new utilities will evolve to overcome
current headaches. Whether FSX will be as popular as the earlier classics
remains to be seen. My initial feeling is that there is potential in the new
sim which is waiting to be tapped in to. Rick Piper is already experimenting
with the bump mapping for his aircraft and this will push the realism up a
few notches. Bump mapping is tricky though and I think it will require some
clever chap to design a bump map utility to allow us mortal users to tap
into this resource - I'd certainly like to try it on the Tiger.

Likewise the concept of importing Google Earth data into the sim shows that
the core of the product is hiding a few major changes. Once the brainy guys
start looking into what is really under the bonnet we may see some rather
stunning evolution of the sim - it may evolve in directions we haven't
thought about before.

Early days yet but it will be interesting to keep an eye on the AVSIM
scenery and aircraft design forums..

bones

-----Original Message-----
From: jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Peter Dodds
Sent: 13 December 2006 09:24
To: jhb_airlines@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Cc: pdodds@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [jhb_airlines] Re: More Christmas Deals!


Everyone is unloading before getting out of Flight Sim products because FSX
has flopped??? Just
imaginings!

Peter



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