AVSIM Commercial Aircraft Package Review

Overland

Fly into the Sky!

World Airline

Product Information

Publisher: Overland

Description: Overland Fly into the Sky! World Airlines.

Download Size:
FS9 Airbus Update 165 MB
FS9 Boeing Update 200 MB
FSX Airbus Update 172 MB
FSX Boeing Update 197 MB

Format:
CD-ROM
(old FS2002/FS2004 files)
Simulation Type:
FS9/FSX (SP1/SP2/Accel)
Reviewed by: Angelique van Campen AVSIM Staff Reviewer - May 21, 2008

Introduction

Ever wanted a bunch of FSX/FS2004 airplanes with 2D and VC cockpits together for the price of one? Now you can with the Overland Fly into the Sky! World Airlines package!

This CD or download version offers you a large amount of Airbus - A300-600R, A319, A320, A321, A330-200, A330-300, A340-200, A340-300, A340-500, A340-600, A380-800 – and Boeing - B737-700, B737-800, B737-900, B747-400, B767-300ER, B777-200, B777-300, B777-300ER and MD11 airplanes. It this is not enough, then I’ve got more for you, since all the aircraft come with additional 2D and VC cockpits for the Airbus A300-600, A320 Family Series, A330, A340 and A380; as well as for the Boeing B737 Series, B777, B767, B747 and the MD11.

That’s pretty impressive and the price for a boxed version at SimMarket, which contains two CD-ROMs, will cost you no more then 49.00 Euro’s, but does it represent high quality? High quality is different for everybody; if one is already happy with good looking airplanes, another may need a cockpit created with full FMS control – if applicable – and so on. I would say, let’s have a look at this huge package.

Installation, documentation and additional info

Installation

The standard Airbus/Boeing installer on the CD-ROM is already an old version. By old version, I mean that you should not use it. That’s strange … you buy a CD-ROM, but you don’t get the latest software? You need to see this differently.

Ok, you need to know this in advance but otherwise, there are no problems. You surf over to the Overland SMS website download section and download the FS2004/FSX Airbus and Boeing updated files (fs9-airbus_update.exe, fs9-boeing_update.exe, fsx-airbus_update.exe and fsx-boeing_update.exe). They (the FS2004 files) are replacing the files on your CD-ROM with brand new files with all kinds of modifications and it also detects the correct FS version automatically, including its location (done via reading the Windows Registry). Furthermore, bug fixes and other aircraft/cockpit related items are changed. Installing the Airbus/Boeing FS2004 version is done via the downloaded file, a legal check is made with the help of the CD-ROM and before you know it , you have used about 600Mb of hard disk space.

Pretty straightforward installer(s). Although these screenshots are from the FS2004 Airbus installation, it’s all the same for the FS2004 Boeing one and of course for the FSX installers. I can add to this that even the uninstallers work perfectly. Uninstalling is not done via an icon of the Start menu or desktop but via the Control Panel – Add/Remove Software.

The same sequence is followed for the FSX update files but remember one thing here, the FSX version is just to make it compatible with FSX. So it’s not redesigned for it. Not really a problem for so many aircraft and looking at most of the competitors, this also means that it doesn’t make any difference under which MSFS system I test the Overland models, since the FSX models don’t have any additional improvements except that the default ground and sky textures are more realistic than in the one offered in FS2004.

I will do an FSX install for you, just to figure out if there are other items which are strange or not correct, or things that surprised me and I can tell you it’s all the same. No difference between them!

After the installation processes are finished, let’s see what shortcuts we have or Start menu entries. That’s odd … there’s nothing. No shortcut on your desktop, no Start menu entry, no manuals, no uninstaller except the one via the Control Panel – Add/Remove Software. Searching on the Overland website doesn’t help either. So it really means there’s no manual at all except for the one you’ll find below in the sub chapter “documentation”. Strange but true!

Documentation

This will be my first review where this sub chapter is very small. Simply because there’s almost nothing. I can’t write down there’s nothing, since the boxed version comes with a very small black and white printed manual. It’s a mix between Japanese and English and holds no more than the following chapters; Installing/Uninstalling “World Airlines”, Selecting Aircraft (from within MSFS), Operating Moving Parts, Technical Support and finally, a list of all available liveries.

The only part that’s interesting is the sub chapter “Operating Moving Parts”. It tells you how to assign all the specific passenger/cargo doors to MSFS commands like tailhook, wing fold, water rudder and Shift+”x” commands. As stated, there is no other manual which would explain something of the available cockpits. Later, we will see that the 2D/VC cockpits are not that impressive or sophisticated, but no manual at all? That’s weak in my personal opinion. End of discussion and end of this documentation section.

Cockpit

2D cockpit (FS9)

Where should I start? There are so many possible cockpits available, but within a minute you will see that there are hardly any additional sub panels simulated. When you see sub panels, like the radio panel, then those are representing the default FS9/FSX panels, which disappoints me. Ok, see below for every aircraft/cockpit combinations, all the possible 2D main panels and if applicable, the sub panels. As I mentioned before, since there’s no documentation at all, I think this is it and hopefully I didn’t miss any add-on panels.

Main Instrument Panel

Pedestal

Radio Panel

Airbus A300-600R
This is it! The main panel looks more or less on the real A300-600/A310 panel but it’s very basic and lots of things are not like the real cockpit. The engine indication is only for CF6-80 engines, because of the N1 indicator. Although some models do have fitted Pratt & Whitney mounted on it. The pedestal is too small and not a very nice digital image. The radio panel, or stack if you wish, is very basic. It has nothing to do with the real Airbus panel and is, in my personal opinion, equal to the default FS panel.

Main Instrument Panel

Overhead Panel / ECAM FUEL Panel

Pedestal

ECAM E/WD DOOR Control Page

Radio Control Panel

Clock

Airbus A319 / A320 / A321
It seems that the A330 Series does have a few more sub panels. The ECAM E/WD (Engine/Warning Display) has two possible pages, the FUEL and DOOR Control page. Additionally, you will find a little bigger pedestal, a default basic radio panel and instead of the Standby Horizon, you can add the default basic FS clock.

Main and Overhead Panel

Radio Panel and Pedestal

ECAM E/WD Door Control Page

Airbus A330-200/300
Basic panel lay-out with just two additional panels and two possible ECAM E/WD pages; the ENGINE and DOOR Control Page. The DOOR Control page allows you to OPEN/CLOSE the passenger doors and the FWD/AFT Cargo doors. By the way, the DOOR page shows that the aircraft is fitted with two emergency exits, fuselage side above the wing, which is not the case in reality.

Main and Overhead Panel

Main and Overhead Panel

Main and Overhead Panel

Airbus A340-200/300/500/600
Although it looks very similar to the A330 cockpit, there are some differences visible but unfortunately not all are applicable for the different A340 models. We have no more than two additional panels; pedestal and radio panel. Also, the radio panel is just the default FS panel. On the ECAM E/WD we can have the ENGINE or DOOR Control page, but that’s it. Apart that the main panel it's not really representing the real A340 panel. One detail is the wrong AUTOBRAKE panel. This panel is only applicable to the A340-500/600 but not for the A340-200/300. Those have a brake panel, which is the same as on the A330 Series. Another detail is the EFIS and ECAM displays. When you want to make a difference; on the originally A340-500/600 the EFIS and ECAM displays are TFT ones which have square corners and not like these here. Those corners are round and represent the older display units. By the way, these days the A330-200/300 or A340-300 are also equipped with TFT displays. These remarks are just a few out of many more items which do not represent the real Airbus cockpit philosophy.

Main Instrument Panel

ECAM DOOR Page and separate EFIS

GEAR/FLAP Panel

Radio Panel

Pedestal

Clock

Airbus A380-800
Very basic and flat 2D presentation of the A380 2D cockpit. It offers the user some additional panels; pedestal, GEAR/FLAP Control panel and the radio stack. For the radio panel, again it’s the default FS panel. So nothing special or customized. Also, there is the possibility to control the OPENING/CLOSING of the doors via the ECAM DOOR page. Is it representing the real or close to the real A380 flight deck? No, it isn’t. The EFIS displays do have more integrated sub instruments and are thus more complicated, which is , unfortunately, not correctly modeled or simulated.

Main Panel with ND ROSE Mode

Expanded EICAS and ND in MAP Mode

Radio Panel and Pedestal

Boeing 737-700/800/900
Looking at this 737 2D cockpit, with so many other competitors on the market, you hardly believe it’s payware. What is there is not bad, but don’t expect a high standard. It’s all basic and looking like all the other Boeing PFD’s, I even get the idea that those are all the same, which is of course not the reality. You probably can’t and may not expect this, but a 737 PFD really looks different than the one in the 777. Also, there are no nice and good looking overhead panels. Again, there's the default FS radio stack and a very simple pedestal. However, no complaints about frame rates.

Main Panel with ND ROSE Mode

Radio Panel and Pedestal

Expanded EFIS/EICAS and ND in MAP

Boeing 747-400
Although this Boeing 747, and also the B777 and MD11, have very simple straightforward real cockpit design with hardly any separate instruments, not that many switches and/or knobs, these cockpits are a little too straight forward. This cockpit looks not too bad but there’s so much missing in my personal opinion. Why, because it’s of the same level of many freeware cockpits. You'll probably find better equipped 747-400 cockpits on AVSIM!

Main Panel with ND ROSE Mode

ND in MAP Mode and Pedestal

Radio Panel

Boeing 767-300
The first impression of this 767 is, as with the other Boeings, not bad and it looks like everything is there but unfortunately, the EADI and EHSI are not simulated well and many switches and knobs are not functioning or can’t be selected. Fixed to the main panel, you will find a very small part of the overhead panel but that’s it, there’s no overhead panel.

Main Panel with ND ROSE Mode

ND in MAP Mode with expanded EICAS

Radio Panel and Pedestal

Boeing 777-200/200ER/200LR/300/300ER
Within the MSFS world, you won’t find that many payware 777 Series. I know the ones from PSS, currently sold via Just Flight, the Wilco Publishing 777 and some freeware 777 2D cockpits. Sorry if I forgot anybody else! Comparing those with this one, then the Overland 2D cockpit is of the same level as many freeware ones. You can’t compare this cockpit with the payware ones from PSS/JF or Wilco Publishing, since it’s too simple with, for example, no decent overhead panel or radio panel. Ok, the main panel doesn’t look too bad, but EICAS pages are missing. The upper EICAS display arrangement is not as it is in the real airplane, no FMS, no CDU at all and no lower EICAS DU (Display Unit). The PFD and ND don’t have the real looking lay-out etc. On the other hand, the FPS (Frames Per Second) are good. Good means on modern but also on older slower systems.

Main Panel with ND ROSE Mode

ND in MAP Mode and EICAS E2 page

PFD only Mode, Radio panel, Pedestal

Boeing/McDonnell Douglas MD11
The last one in the Overland row, the Boeing/McDonnell Douglas MD11. Such a beautiful airplane with an advanced cockpit but the one supplied with this package is far from that. It offers a 2D look, which is so basic. Look on the RH side of the main panel, next to the gear handle. There’s a RUDDER and AILERON trim panel, which is, if I'm not mistaken, from a basic FS Boeing plane. It’s doesn’t belong here in this lay-out. The upper bar is suggesting a clock but when I click it, nothing appears or at least I haven’t seen it. These are just a few examples of the main panel, which aren’t correct. On the screenshot with the pedestal, it seems that the FLAP/SLAT handle is partly pink! After checking on Airliners.Net, I couldn’t find any real cockpit pictures with a pink colored component.


What is right and what is wrong or what may you expect? I don’t know, but what I do know is that all the cockpits are of an average quality. Some are better than others or are more realistic, sub cockpit panels are very basic and for the overhead panel, it’s really disappointing. May I expect highly sophisticated cockpits? No, I don’t think so, since you get 20 aircraft for the price of €2,45 per type or if you wish, €4,90 per cockpit. On the other hand, surfing the many freeware websites, like ours, many freeware cockpits are available and sometimes with better and more sophisticated lay-outs.

Virtual Cockpit

It’s now time to look closely at the VC’s. Since Overland comes with 10 different cockpit lay-outs, I’ll try to keep it simple by not making too many screenshots. I will make three shots of every available cockpit and one comment section. Keep in mind, the gauges used in the VC are generally the same as the ones used in the 2D cockpit, so there’s not really a difference. However, what is different, is the total overall cockpit impression. Where there’s a lack of sub panels in the 2D view, there’s no limitation in a virtual look, so let’s go and see what Overland offers.

Airbus A300-600R
Airbus A319 / A320 / A321
Airbus A330-200/300
I need to add something here related to the A330 Series. The 2D cockpit screenshots of this Airbus types uses the round cornered display units of the EFIS and ECAM system. For the same aircraft models, the VC cockpit suddenly uses the square corners, which represents the TFT display units. There’s nothing wrong with having the latest modern A330 with these TFT EFIS/ECAM displays, but not when the 2D versus VC cockpit displays are different. It’s either in 2D/VC view with round or straight corners. On other item; the RH lower side of the overhead panel – right hand screenshot – shows us the manual engine start pushbutton for a 4 engine aircraft, while the A330 has only two engines? Did I miss something?
Airbus A340-200/300/500/600
Airbus A380-800
On the left screenshot we will find on the LH side of pedestal three display units. The two outer ones show you an ECAM System DOOR page, which is not correct. These displays are related to flight data, navigation data and others, while the inner display should show something of ECAM. This information and real live pictures can be simply retrieved via Airliners.Net.
Boeing 737-700/800/900
Boeing 747-400
Boeing 767-300
Boeing 777-200/200ER/200LR/300/3000ER
Boeing/McDonnell Douglas MD-11
Is there anything to say apart of all the VC screenshots? Normally, I compare Virtual Cockpits with real pictures, but this time I don’t. First of all, it will become a mess due to the amount of screenshots and secondly, because I have my doubts about the quality of the VC’s. As was the case with the 2D cockpits, there are also freeware VC’s of these aircraft with the same quality and sometimes even higher. Is there a need to compare it with competitors like PMDG, CLS, LVL-D, PSS, Flight1 and others? No, absolutely not! Therefore, these VC’s do miss many things. For example, the functionality of the overhead panel. I think 80-90% of the overhead panel is only an average digital image, where nothing can be controlled. What can be controlled on the overhead panel is visible within the yellow squares. Outside of this, there’s nothing to control.
Finally, I think the cockpits are a good start for a new or beginner MSFS virtual pilot. Not complicated and it can be flown with the help of your keyboard, so no joystick or flight sim yoke is needed.

Normally there’s much more text, highly detailed screenshots and as written before, lots of comparisons between a real cockpit and the modeled one. None of this can be found here. I think it's like I said before, the 2D and VC cockpits are very simple, straightforward and they look in one way or the other to the default Boeing airplanes. Even the EFIS displays of the Boeing models seems to be the same, including the EADI and EHSI, which aren’t like in reality and thus not very realistic. On the other hand and probably that’s Overland’s idea, a beginner can fly it and learn something of these aircraft types, but unfortunately without any manual.

External Model

Let’s start with the fact that the overall look of all the models is good, although the A300-600 has not that many details than for example, the A320 Family models, A330 and A340 or Boeing models. Is this enough then?

It compensates for the previously discussed cockpits. I could check every model and make several screenshots but that’s too much and there’s no need for it. I suggest we highlight a few aircraft types and try to show you the positive and negative items. One negative item is – although this has to do with the maximum polygons MSFS can handle – the main and nose wheels. They are not really round in my opinion, but is it worth making fully round wheels and then leave other items in a minimum state? No, I don’t think so and therefore it's always a problem to find a balance between one or the other parts.

Ok, let’s first have a look at the following external models; the Airbus A320, Airbus A340-600, Boeing 747-400 and the McDonnell Douglas MD11. So once again, I’ve just made a collection of a few aircraft types in relation to their external look and not chosen all the Overland models. These 4 aircraft types therefore represent the total range of Overland airplanes, but during the flight dynamics section, I’ve got some more surprises.

A compilation of a few external Overland models, which represent more or less the quality of all the packed models. The first three screenshots are from the Airbus A321, followed by the Airbus A340-600, then the Boeing 747-400 and finally at the bottom the McDonnell Douglas MD11. The general impression is good although some details on certain models are missing or are not sharp if I may say so. Look to the small notes I added to each screenshot.

An in-between conclusion of these external models: The overall look of the airplane types is good, although certain details are missing. Wheels could be designed as a more rounder model. Further, you can look at a few places through the MD11 wing – so, it's not well aligned – certain placards with symbols/text, which are located on several places on the fuselage, are not sharp or not readable at all. Since the above is a collection, In my “how do they fly” section, different models will show you all the Overland models. Although it’s not a summery here, for MSFS beginners, this Overland package is a good start to challenge the small, medium and big jets. They are simple, straightforward, with uncomplicated cockpit handling and above all, have very good frame rates. Let’s go to the next chapter and see if the models offer real flight characteristics.

How do they fly ….. or flight dynamics?

Oops, this will be heavy! As stated above, I will make several test flights – depending on the aircraft type – in Europe (Toulouse/Blagnac LFBO) and the United States (Seattle Boeing Field KBFI) with the other remaining models. First to get an idea of the flight characteristics, and second so you can see for yourself the other Overland models. Keep one thing in mind, I don’t own a professional ATPL (Airline Transport Pilot License) but only a PPL. However, this, with 24 years real maintenance aviation experience, helps me judge of the flight dynamics from the Overland models.

Let’s first start at KBFI with the smallest Boeing member, the 737 NG Series. It comes in three different flavors, the -700, -800 and the -900. Although all the individual models have their own flight characteristics in the real world, for real pilots there's a certain commonality between the 737NG series. Commonality means that airlines owing these 737NG models, can swap their pilots between the different models. Ok, pilots need to follow conversion training, but that’s it I hope.

What’s the use of this story? The use of this is that I’m going to test, for example, the 737-700 model and not the other 737 NG Overland models, since the flight dynamics are more or less the same. While the test flight of the 737-700 seems to have average characteristics, then this means to me that the two remaining models have the same responses.

Enough, let’s jump into the brand new China Eastern 737-700, parked at the cargo apron of Boeing Field. It’s a cloudy day but that won’t stop us from making several test flights. Since there’s no manual or anything else except the kneeboard, I’ll make the necessary default MSFS preparations for payload and fuel, this is because the models are not offering any fuel planner or payload editor. Officially, I don’t need that much fuel so I’ll put it at 50%. We’re ready with all our checks completed and don’t forget there’s not that much to do since there’s no FMS, no FWD and AFT overhead panel to check/test so I.m ready to taxi to runway 13R.

Taxi to our runway is without any problems and when we reach the runway, we hold at A1 of runway 13R. We check if everything is ok and then we turn onto the runway and apply full TO thrust. We decided to climb out to 4000 feet following the runway heading before making a RH turn to 090°. So here we go, at VR (Rotation Speed) we apply some force on the yoke or if you wish via a keyboard key and once airborne, we retract the gear and then our flaps. I face one thing already and that is it’s not restricted at all. You can pull and pull and the aircraft will follow.

Since this aircraft is very easy to fly, although the real thing is probably different, we easily fly further by hand and do not use the Auto Pilot. In the mean time, I can make some screenshots of the external model and even this 737-700, which is representing the other 737NG models. Surprisingly, the engines have lots of details but other parts of the fuselage are not really. As you’ve probably seen already, all the test flights are made within FSX. What I wrote earlier, since the FS2004 models are made compatible with FSX, you can also fly this version of the simulator.

Whatever you chose, one thing is for sure; even in FSX the frame impact is very good or probably I should write; "your frame rates are hardly reduced with the Overland Simmer Sky models and cockpits, which his very good news."

One huge advantage of MSFS, is that we are able to jump during our flight into the second Boeing test model, the 767-300ER (Extended Range). This aircraft was just delivered to Air Canada and before we take our captain's position, we'll first have a look at the outside. The same as we saw with the 737NG model, the overall model looks very nice, including the engine circumference, but the moment we get closer to the model, some details are missing or not that sharp. This can be seen, for example, at the RH wing screenshot. I’ve not zoomed that far into the wing and as you can see, lots of details on the wing itself are not available. It’s not all bad but I’ve seen more detailed FS9/FSX models.

It’s time to jump into the cockpit and do some manual flight practices. It flies very easily to be honest, perhaps a little too basic. I can make +40 degrees bank angles or even pitch a lot. Again, I’m not a licensed 767 pilot, but this is not real, in my opinion. Since the flight controls of the two Boeing models are all controlled in manual flight by cables, there’s not really a limitation unless you reach the flight control stops or the steering force becomes too high.

Welcome into the world of fly-by-wire!

This is different and as far as I know, the 777-300ER from Eva Air is a Boeing type with fly-by-wire but with a stick between the pilots legs. As far as I can remember from ex-KLM colleagues, this is a real fly-by–wire model, which means that when flying manually, the input of the roll and pitch channel is controlled by computers. That means you can do what you want with the control wheel or control column, but the computers will see if it’s allowed to do so under the current flight condition.

Ok, back to the 777 model. On the screenshots below we can see more or less the same. Overall model looks pretty good, but zooming into parts of the wings, fuselage, and tail gives a different impression. An impression where details are missing! I’m personally more concerned about the possibility of making huge bank angles or giving extreme pitch inputs. While doing this in a manual controlled flight situation, no auto pilot connected, the aircraft follows my commands without any limitations. In reality I have my doubts if flight control computers allow you to do this. Ok, it looks nice when you can make huge bank and pitch angles, but is it real?

Anyway, with the impression of these three Boeing models, including the ones we saw at Seattle Tacoma International Airport, I can finish with the words that the Boeing external models look good although it could be lifted to a higher detailed standard. The Boeing flight dynamics or characteristics are not as real as could be possible, but for the beginner, it’s a good start.

We’ve left the United States and are heading for the warm mid-southern area of France. To be more precise, the incredible city of Toulouse, with its famous airport Blagnac. Why famous, because Airbus Industries' main factory is situated here. It’s now time to check the flight dynamics of two other Airbus members, an A330 model and the huge A380. Running on the flight line, I got the possibility to fly along with the Airbus guys to check a brand new A330-300 from Garuda Indonesia and you won't believe it, the one and only one A380-800 from Singapore Airlines.

Ok, let’s first start with the A330. The external model is very similar to the previously seen A340-600, since the aircraft are like brother and sister. But as we have seen now from all the previous models, the overall look is good but most of the times details are missing or weak. This is , by the way, also applicable for the A380. Taxiing, climbing, cruising, descending and landing with Airbus models give me more or less the same feeling.

If this is real, I don’t know! I only know that both Airbus models are all fly-by-wire ones, but if they fly and feel the same, I have no idea. But there’s a reason to write this down. It flies so easy that you hardly believe this it’s representing the real dynamics and the moment I start my climb doing manual manoeuvers like extreme bank and pitch angles, then once again I can do what I want.

For the Airbus types I know, this is not real. Once in the air, the Airbus A320 Family and the A380 are all controlled and monitored by FCPC (Flight Control Primary Computer) and/or FCSC (Flight Control Secondary Computer) computers. They don’t allow the pilot to do things that could harm the aircraft structure or place it in a dangerous flight situation. Pilots only have a side stick input and the computer(s) decide if it is allowed or not. Ok, that’s the real world, but the moment there’s no limitation in MSFS, you get situations that can be seen on many of the screenshots below, huge pitch and bank angles.

Flight impression and external model look of an A330 member – A330-300 - and the only available A380-800. The general impression of the external model is good but personally I found that details are missing. The test flights give me an average feeling of not representing realistic flight characteristics. This could be a limitation of MSFS but I’ve seen more realistic flight performances from other MSFS vendors, so it should be in one way or the other, possible.

I’m a very happy person; I’m back on the ground and while relaxing with a glass of red French wine, I review the American and French dreams. It was a lot of work this time but that’s the consequences of so many aircraft types in one package. I would rate the aircraft flight dynamics on a scale from 0 to 10 at about a 6. The fact my rating is not that high is probably a result of the extreme flight possibilities, which is not as real as it gets, apart from the fact that MSFS limits things like these. This package is nice and full of models, especially for the beginner who wants to try something and has all these models in house. On the other hand, the Overland package is not intended for the intermediate and expert MSFS virtual pilots who are looking for bigger challenges.

Sound

Unfortunately, this will be very short since the Overland SMS models don’t come with their own sound files. All the aircraft models, ranging from the different Airbus models and the Boeing airplanes are all linked to the default Fs2004 sound folder of the Boeing 737-400 aircraft. In other words, very unrealistic and that really disappoints me. Since everybody knows that the default B737-400 sound from Microsoft is already of an average quality, in relation to these add-on models, it's even worse.

For the FSX models, it’s slightly different because FSX offers an Airbus model, but still no customized sound. All the Overland FSX Boeing models, excluding the MD11, are linked to the default B737-800 sound folder, while all the Airbus models including the MD11, are linked to the default FSX Airbus A321. Again, deeply disappointing. Why? Because suddenly, and according to Overland, a CF6-50, Pratt & Whitney JT9D or Rolls Royce RB211 engines, do sound the same as the default Airbus FSX CFM 56 Airbus A321 engine.

Summary / Closing Remarks

Test System

Dell Precision Workstation 650
Dual Intel P4-Xeon 3.06Ghz
4Gb RAM DDR 533Mhz
nVidia 7800GS+ 512Mb AGP
RAID-0 HDD’s - SCSI 340Gb
Windows XP Professional SP2
Flight Simulator 9.1
Flight Simulator FSX SP2
Saitek Pro Flight Rudder Pedals
Saitek ProFlight Yoke System
TrackIR Pro 4
TrackClip Pro

Flying Time:
27 hours

Ok, what do you get for your money? You get good looking external models, average 2D and VC cockpits, which are not better than most of the freeware cockpits offered, for example, in the AVSIM Library. You get no customized engine, cabin or cockpit sounds, so for this you need to look for freeware packages on AVSIM or buy separate sound packages. The last one is, in my opinion, not really an option since you already paid for this package.

Furthermore, you don’t get any manuals and even that is strange since some freeware software even offers you nice looking manuals with lots of information, at least to explain a little about the cockpits and if needed, to provide some background information.

It seems that I’m disappointed but I’m not. I think you need to look where it is intended for. After testing the package and models, I personally say it’s a very good start for MSFS beginners. For FSX, you’ve also got the advantage of having lots of models with a minimum frame impact.

Ok, now the price. I wrote it already earlier; the CD-ROM version contains all the Boeing and Airbus models, cost you €49.00 (˜ $70.00). That’s a lot, but is it? You get 20 aircraft types or if you wish 10 different cockpits. That means €2.45 per aircraft or €4.90 per cockpit and that's all packed together for FS2004 and FSX. Just install it and you’re done. Ready to fly!

You could ask yourself; “Is there no way to get this as freeware?” Probably the answer is yes, but for FSX it's not that quickly answered apart from the fact the beginner must collect all the different cockpits and aircraft types and tehn merge them together if they were offered separately. For a beginner this could be a huge problem, while buying the package immediately gives him the possibility to fly after 5 minutes of installation and not have to struggle or look around for the necessary software.

Therefore, the Overland package is really great for new virtual pilots who want to have all the Boeing and Airbus models together with uncomplicated cockpits and can apply their basic flight knowledge.

 

What I Like About World Airlines

  • Price per aircraft/cockpit very interesting, thus very interesting for beginners.
  • Recently all FS2004 models are updated while in March 2008, an update pack became available for FSX.
  • Very frame rate friendly!
  • Good looking external models.
  • Package comes with some liveries, but much more can be found at the AVSIM library.

 

What I Don't Like About World Airlines

  • Not intended for intermediate and expert flight simmers who want something more realistic.
  • Except for the small offered Japanese/English booklet, there’s no other available manual that explains something of the different cockpits.
  • 2D/VC cockpits of an average quality, which means they are simple, not always facing the reality, not that many additional panels or no FMS and IRS available.
  • No dedicated sounds at all! All offered Overland SMS models are linked to the default FS2004 B737-400 sound folder.
  • Flight dynamics/characteristics or in normal English – how real do they fly – are not always like the reality.
  • No fuel planner or load editor.

 

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Fly Into The Sky. World Airlines

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