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Any talk of a virtual cockpit for PIC?

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A virtual cockpit is the only thing that could possibly make this sim better IMO. Has anyone discussed a VC?David

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In an old thread Eric said that a VC isn't really good for this kind of aircraft, so they weren't going to do one.I'm not sure if it was on this forum or the old archives.Take care!P

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How could it not be good? The best part of a VC is you can scoot over to the left about a foot and you no longer have to endure the jumpseat view (which I must say is better in PIC than most). Once you try a VC with TrackerIR you never go back! Maybe a third party will figure out how to do it. Thanks for the reply!David

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Guest jase439

I can't realistically see that happening unless someone on the PIC team took it upon themselves as a personal venture (unlikely, considering that after 2 1/2 years, this is probably a VERY DEAD project for them :). PIC was designed for FS2000 and I think most of us feel darn fortunate that we can use it in FS2002 at all. Throw in the POSKY aircraft with Lee's merges, and I can't complain much.If the team does do another product, I would assume it would be designed for FS2002 and contain all the new bells and whistles.J

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>How could it not be good? How ?The quality of textures, detail usually goes down the toilet with VC so it should be of no surpise that some of us don't like it. I for example like photo-realisticly looking window frames with its placards, screws, knobs, rivets, etc. - unless VC can deliver this sort of detail I have no use for it. :-(Michael J.

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Guest ilh

Speaking of VC texture quality, have you seen the new DF Archer? I find the VC almost indistinguishable from the 2D cockpit. It certainly raises the bar compared to any other VC I've seen and might change people's opinion of VCs. Then again, VCs are more useful in GA aircraft.Disclaimer: I was a DF Archer beta tester.Lee Hetherington (KBOS)

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Guest jase439

The VC on that bird is second to none. It's as close as I've come to "being there" in a sim. The DF VC has exceeded the level of in-cockpit realism that is present in Fly! IMHO. They really raised the bar on this one. I hope AVSIM awards them their Gold Seal of Excellence (or whatever they call it :) It has my vote!J

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Guest DreamFleet

The best award we could get are comments like yours, J. :-)The funny thing is about the Archer VC is that I had Marcel Felde make it quite "simple" from a polygon standpoint, in an effort to help frame rates, which can really suffer in a VC.The only thing that mattered to me in the VC was the main panel, and there, we simply did it all by mapping a rather large texure to the panel. In essence, a full width version of the 2D main panel, only a bit smaller in overall scale. Just a big photo of the panel is all it is. Really, anyone can do that, no secret to it to our end.With our forthcoming C-310, we will attempt a complete photoreal exterior and interior. There, I will probably kick up the size of the main panel texture a bit more. We push things slowly, as we need folk's computers to catch up. Even my computer needs to catch up now! :-eekWe can already make VCs that would almost equal the 2D graphics, but no one has computers that could run them.Then there will be what we do with the VC for our 737, but no comment about that. ;-)Let me also add that for FS2002, airliner VCs are almost a waste. They are currently best suitable for smaller, less complex aircraft.Click spots don't work, navigating around it is difficult. So in the end, all you have is the main panel with working gauges, and nothing but nice graphics on the overhead and center stand, plus some moving parts. If we added gauges to those other areas, not only would you be unable to easily access them, but you could not even click on them, and the gauges would extract a terrible toll on frame rates.Frankly, considering the complexity of PIC, a VC would be of little use to the serious user. Just a "gee wiz" thing that would do little more than drag frame rates down.VCs for airliners will not truly come into their own as useful environments until FS2004. When I expect that MS WILL make the click spots work, and provide for camera positions (ala Fly!) that can be set to show certain parts of the cockpit (eg: the center stand). These will take the place of the current 2D panel "windows". Also, by then, the average computer will be up to dealing with higher resolution textures and all those gauges that will be necessary.The 2D panel will be all but extinct in FS2004.Regards,http://www.dreamfleet2000.com/gfx/images/F...R_FORUM_LOU.jpg

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Guest MB327

Excellent post Lou and a great summation of the VC issue in PIC.

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Guest jase439

I think the charm of the VC has to do primarily with the visual aspect of flying. It's a great way to "see the world" - especially with all FS2002 has to offer in terms of scenery. With a GA aircraft, you're typically operating low altitude VFR. During times you are flying IFR, the VC is still a nice option because - as you stated - you get the whole dashboard at a glance just as you would in a real GA craft. Flying closed traffic around a small airport is also funner from the VC because you have a much greater sense of orientation, depth perception, and position relative to the field, so it's much easier to determine when to call your base and final. Prior to FS2002, I would always have to sneek spastic peeks out my side view and *guess* when it was just the right time to turn, and then make the turn and hope i'd come out aligned more or less with the centerline. Sometimes that would involve a process of look a little, turn a little, level out, look a little, turn a little more - but it was difficult to make a perfectly smooth rollout to final. In the VC, this kind of maneuver is very fluid and natural and does not require the constant head-jerking.For an airliner, however, you're flying IFR all the way. The dashboard is MUCH larger and your instruments are distributed all around you. I don't generally fly the 737 or the 767 for high-altitude sight seeing purposes :) Apart from the occasional sunrise/sunset, there really isn't much to see except sky, clouds, and stars :) The aircraft operation is MUCH less hands-on, and involves a significant amount of interactive clicking and pushing and dial-turning. Again, as you stated, the VC doesn't allow this kind of interaction. Naturally, as the capabilities for automated flight increase for a given aircraft, the less meaningful the VC becomes.A VC in this environment is more of a "ooo and ahh" feature than it is a functional one.Cheers,J

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Very good post Lou. This should serve as a reference for anyone discussing the VC issue.Michael J.

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