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Some concerns about upcoming Flight1 DC9...

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I've been looking forward to Flight1's DC9 since it was first announced. The preview pics look good and no one has really attempted this popular bird since Eric Ernst (well, I'm sure there are others actually). The panels looked like they were recreated in painstaking detail, yet when a DC9 FO pointed out that some of the switches were misplaced or inverted, Jim Rhodes quickly pointed out that at that price the DC9 was designed to be an "entertainment title" that essentially is dumbed-down for the masses.First, it would take no more time and money to position a switch in its true configuration rather than perpetuating our "up is on" mentality. These idiosynchrocies are what make flying different planes seem, well, different. Also, if such little disregard was paid to these details, what can we really expect in the flight model?Who asked for an "entertainment title" at a cut-rate price? I think most of us would poney up the cash to see a model done right. While I may find I love this product in the end, I'm constantly going to be wondering what other liberties they've taken. Excuse me for enjoying the dream that I just might be asked to take the controls of a DC9 someday and will bring it in for a perfect landing, saving all aboard! This seems like a contradiction to Flight1's previous products and I sure hope it isn't a trend.Here's the link to the original thread:http://www.simforums.com/forums/display_to...&PagePosition=1David

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It sounds to me like the position of the switches was a design decision rather than an error. At least that is what I gather from the post. I am all for the maximum amount of realism, however some compromises need to be made considering that all developers must take a large real-world aircraft panel and represent it on a 17" monitor. The airfile for the DC-9 is done by Steve Small, so I for one am not worried about it's accuracy. I can't wait to get my hands on this bird. My only worry is that it will be out for the thanksgiving holiday here in the US.

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Craig,Good point about Steve Small's involvement. I can also appreciate what you say about necessary compromises. The Captain Sim 727 is a good example of how hard it is to get all the switches on one monitor and still make them legible. I guess I just get worried when I hear the term "entertainment title" applied shortly before release. Makes me think they are trying prepare the hardcore simmers for disappointment. On the other hand, if they said it was 100% accurate, they would get torn to shreds for every inconsistency!David

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>The airfile for the DC-9 is done by Steve Small, so I for >one am not worried about it's accuracy.And I do agree. Perhaps if I had a choice I would have a tiny preference for Rob Young doing the airfile since he proved to be an absolute master of the trade considering his groundbraking work on the SF 260 flight model ? Slips, spins, etc.On the subject of the switches - I really don't know whether it was an oversight or intentional design decision. But I am looking much more towards the Meridian (where all switches better be right !) .. had enough of the 50,000+ lbs jets. ;-)Michael J.[link:hifi.avsim.net/activesky]http://hifi.avsim.net/activesky/images/wxrebeta.jpg

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Guest JeanLuc_

Hi David,I might understand it differently, and probably my French mother tongue is the reason why, but after reading the thread you've linked, I would tend to think that "entertainement title" in the context of the current Flight1's projects does not mean a "lesser quality" than before.I understand it is on the contrary a well thought out product, in providing the possibility to anyone of us, skilled or not, to fly a great Aircraft with complex systems with a shorter learning curve. This to me means immediate enjoyement, and less time to learn all the knobs and switches before being able to take off the plane. If so, it also means they have thought a step ahead of the less skill simmers to help getting the most out of what looks to be, in the tradition of Flight1, a very good add-on.I also have noticed that Flight1 is opened to suggestions and this is great too.

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Guest mikehaska

As long as the switch works, does it matter if it is flipped or not? I would be more concerned if the switch was not tied into a system, or if the switch wasn't even featured.

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From my opinion I'd much rather have a simulation then a dumbed down version.Drew Anderson- drew@dr3w.net

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Keep in mind though that DF refers to their 737-400 as an entertainment title as well, and I'd hardly call it unrealistic...

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Please don't take offense, but I think you've perhaps 'modified' the main point of Jim Rhoads's message for the purpose of your argument. I'm sure any decision that was made resulting in less realisim was for the good of the project. There are certain things you CANNOT do with FS panel design, and given the reputation of Flight 1, I'm almost sure it won't result in any less of a product. How do you know that it would not have been extremely difficult to model the DC-9 overhead exactly as the prototype? All I see is the movement of a few switches...where do you see any indication of 'dumbing down?'

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David,Honestly, I hope you are right. Jim points out that it is not designed to be a training device and at that low price, I'd say that is clear. It sounds as though this addon is designed for the masses, though, and for those of us who enjoy serious "study sims", those are never good words. The Meridian should keep us busy for awhile though.David

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Who asked for an "entertainment title" at a cut-rate price?Hi,First, it may come as a surprise for you, but the majority in this community are surely not "hard core" simmers, but "entertainment simmers". And the Flight1 crew are doing just the right thing in marketing this software as such.Furthermore, if you take some time in reading the available DC-9 POH, you will see that this DC-9 surely is much more than only an "entertainment title",.....read and judge for yourself. ;-)Happy contrailing, :-waveStaffan AhlbergFreeware Flight GroupStockholm/Sweden/ESSA

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I agree, Staffan. I was impressed with the number of functional items from reading the POH. All the circuit breakers appear to be functional (well, 'dummy switches,' at the very least). You can't even say that much for the PSS Airbus, where only the most necessary functions were modelled. PSS didn't even add dummies.

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Guest TimD

The switches are oriented this way as a design decision, for practical reasons:1.To economize on resources. There are already over 600 gauge resource handles and bitmap elements in this very complex gauge pack. To try and recreate a detail so trivial as which way each and every system switch activates, up or down, for would balloon the amount of resources required to operate this panel considerably.2.For practical reasons, you have to consider that percentage-wise, most users are not familiar with the actual DC 9 panel and systems. These switches you refer to are about 6 or 7 toggle switches on the overhead panel, where ON is down and OFF is up. Most people would consider this upside-down. So while the very few who have experience with a real DC 9 would (perhaps) appreciate the switches oriented this way, 99.9% of the users would consider them upside down, and would be reporting this as a "bug".Regardless of which direction these few switches are pointed, they all do correspond to actual systems on the DC 9. They are not there just for show. If you are interested, I would invite you to download the POH here. I think you will not be disappointed in the replication of the actual DC 9 systems.Keep the blue on top! http://www.fsheartland.net/images/Signature_F1.jpg

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Tim,Thanks for your reply. I wasn't so concerned about the few toggle switches as I was in the somewhat surprising referral to the addon as an "entertainment title". Particularly since the POH certainly suggests it is substantially more. PIC767 certainly didn't attempt to include every switch in its proper location but it certainly didn't water down the essence of flying a heavy airliner either. As Steffan points out, maybe I really am in the minority here, although I suspect the daily Avsim guest is among the most demanding of the hobby. I get the most satisfaction from using a sim that I know is capable of being used in actual training - perhaps not in all facets of training but at least certain key areas (failures, VFR, IFR, etc). PS1.3 is probably the best example but certainly MSFS addons have shown it is possible to recreate certain elements of flight very realistically.For the time being, I'm going to assume you and your team are just modest. Dreamfleet always insists their models are not capable of being used for flight training yet I routinely use the Archer to practice my flight lessons to great effect. Should you decide to offer a $300 megapro version of the DC9 at some point in the future, count me in! I really don't think I would be the only one in line but who knows! David

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Paul,That might be and I certainly hope so for my own sake (and perhaps other hardcore simmers here ;-)) To me, the term pops up the most with combat sims. Falcon 4 is considered by most to be a serious "study sim" while Janes USAF was released as an "entertainment title" - although I never found the latter to be entertaining in the least! I suppose the true moral here is that both companies are out of business! ;-)Paul, I should have mentioned your excellent DC9 panels in my original post. I used them a lot for quite awhile but I'm now hooked on the virtual cockpit, which makes the Flight1 product intriguing.David

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Hi David,Thanks you for your interest in the DC9!Since I seem to be quoted on this thread, I think I had better have the chance to say clarify my position. And I never said the title was "dumbed done for the masses" Entertainment title does not mean "cut rate" cheap scab job.Microsofts Flight Simulator 2002 is an entertainment title. Yes, we are all passionate about the sim and dont like that term and many of us have the ability to create add-ons with much more realism and features than the default MS title.But an entertainment title it is. The original fellow that my thread addressed asked a valid question. Actually, several of them over the course of several weeks. My response is to let him know we are not creating a level D sim. The purpose of the Iron Knuckles series is not to build a real DC9 level D simulator. Niether are we trying to outclass or compete with anyone including Dreamfleet. But the Iron Knuckles DC9 is no shabby scab job either. I would hope that anyone that knows me would know that I dont produce that kind of product and niether does Steve Small, Tim Dickens or Terry Gaff.If you are looking for a level D sim, than avoid this. If you are looking for a very good and reasonable representation of the DC9 on the Flight Simualtor FS2002 platform, than my bet is that you will want this title. it is a great value for $24.95However now when you here me say the words entertainment title hopefully you will know what I mean and I appologize for not being a bit clearer. Now for another matter....When you here me say "cockpit familiarization tool" like the Meridian... You better hang on to your hat. because you are not ready for this one nor have you seen anything like it for FS. Regards,Jim Rhoads

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Jim,I'm sure I will find the DC9 entertaining and I hope challenging. I am DEFINITELY looking forward to the Meridian however. My brother flies its cheap cousin, a Malibu Mirage.David

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Guest jaapverduijn

"(...) Should you decide to offer a $300 megapro version of the DC9 at some point in the future, count me in! I really don't think I would be the only one in line (...)"Draw a number! I've got #1 (grin)!Jaap Verduijn.

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...but a Malibu Mirage isn't cheap by GA standards! :-lolI hope all the goodies being pre-released are a signal that the DC-9 will be released within the week... That would really make my Thanksgiving!

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