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face23785

Getting accurate town layouts

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So I'm new here and I wasn't sure where to put this. There are a lot of forums here and I'm sure people come in and ask this before, but the issue I've had with searching is finding something recent, so I'm gonna ask again and if I get beat over the head so be it. 

I'm new to Microsoft Flight Sim. The only flight sim I had used before was GeoFS at www.geo-fs.com. I wanted more realistic flying and I purchased FSX Steam Edition. I'm having fun with the flying, but I was disappointed with the scenery, specifically the layouts of the terrain and towns not being correct. I'm from a small town in northeast Pennsylvania, and flying out of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International on GeoFS and flying over my hometown is super cool. In FSX, the airport is decent but nothing is where it should be after I take off. I can't navigate visually because buildings, fields, rivers, roads etc aren't correct on the ground. Even the surrounding mountains aren't right. 

Now I've been googling the hell out of this and the problem I'm having is there's just a gazillion add-ons for this simulator. There's a lot of threads about this, but most of them are old and end with people speculating "hopefully we'll have this soon". Now GeoFS doesn't have 3D buildings, but from altitude that doesn't really matter, everything looks right when you look down. If this can be done for that, which literally runs in your browser, surely someone has been able to accomplish this for FSX, right? Is there an add-on that will render cities and towns accurately so you can navigate visually if you're familiar with the area? 

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What you need for your situation is a Landclass addon. Landclass tells the sim where to display cities, forests, desert, farms, etc. 

If you're running the default FSX ground textures you'll need a landclass addon that uses the default textures. You have a few choices. 

SceneryTech (link below) offers what you could buy and use with default textures. You can buy Landclass for North America, Europe, etc.

https://www.scenerytech.com/products/landclass/support.htm

Another option would be Ultimate Terrain by Flight1. This adds some Landclass and also vector data which is responsible for drawing correct coastlines, rivers, streets, freeways, etc. I'd recommend it before buying just a single Landclass product.

http://www.flight1.com/products.asp?product=utxusa

The other option if you plan to buy ORBX Global texture replacement, would be ORBX OpenLC NA. OpenLC NA is also great and I use it in addition to Ultimate Terrain, but you'll need to buy ORBX Global textures to run OpenLC NA as Global comes with some textures that OpenLC calls for. You can find info about ORBX Global and OpenLC at the link below.

https://orbxdirect.com/

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True, but landclass defined scenery will not give you a map of your town with buildings on it like you are asking for. The earth in FSX is an imaginary one with generic buildings and streets where actual building and streets are thought to be (or not), depending upon the accuracy of the (where to place things) map grid used. 

Unless someone develops a photo real scenery for your area and has a sophisticated building generating program that looks like your neighbourhood, what you are looking for does not really exist yet.

Google earth comes the closest, and is likely the best hope for just that.

Welcome to our hobby BTW! :)

Kind regards,

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What you are looking for is an add-on which has photorealistic terrain, with realistic placement of autogen buildings over it. There are a few of these to be found, but they can sometimes be a bit hard on your computer system since they have a lot to depict. Generally speaking, finding these as add-ons can be tricky because it tends to be only famous cities and such which get that treatment (i.e. London, New York, Chicago, Paris etc), but there are some exceptions which cover larger areas.

Good examples of this would be Just Flight's VFR Real Scenery for the UK (which comes in four volumes), this can also then have their Revolution X autogen buildings add-on added on top of it, so you end up with a photorealistic view of the ground (created from aerial photographs), but with accurately modeled buildings placed on top of those photographic terrain maps. Another one which does this would be VFR France's Ile de France, which depicts about 5,000 square miles of photorealistic terrain around the city of Paris and then places realistic model buildings over the top of it (this incidentally, is very hard on your computer and can slow it down a lot).

So you end up with stuff which looks like this, i..e on this picture you can see the Eiffel Tower and all the other buildings which are as they are when you are really there, i.e across the River Seine beyond the tower you can make out the Trocadéro and the museum which is as it is in real life, as indeed are all the other buildings, these building are all placed on top of phototerrain of Paris, so you can see the Champ de Mars park in front of the tower, and that is from an aerial photograph, which means what you see is exactly as per the real thing in terms of roads, parks, building locations etc:

KSlvDgv.jpg

There is another thing you can try out too, which is XPOI, from FS Dreamteam, this points out all the locations of landmarks everywhere in your sim, and it is really cool, it absolutely will have all the stuff near your own home town on it, and there is a free demo of it too, but it isn't expensive anyway (15 quid/19 dollars).

It won't put the buildings in the sim for you unfortunately, but it will tell you exactly where everything in the world is as you fly over it, and it even allows you to link it to wikipedia in your sim so that if you spot something interesting, you can click on it and it will open up a wiki page in your flight sim and you can read all about that landmark without even going out of your flight sim. It is one of the best add-ons you can get for your flight sim if you like flying about and exploring, and it works in FSX and P3D. See the link below:

https://www.fsdreamteam.com/products_xpoi.html

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As already suggested, either Orbx Global combined with OpenLC North America or UTX USA will almost certainly place a town at the site of your hometown, although it may not be a very accurate depiction.

It might however be worth considering Pennsylvania V3 which is the latest version of the Megascenery photoreal series of US states and this will almost certainly show an accurate image of your hometown. Photoreal scenery can however give a somewhat flat looking 2D effect at very low altitude but there is a company called Nuvecta that provides 3-D autogen objects for photoscenery which can overcome this 2D appearance and they have an addon available for Pennsylvania. 

Bill

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Thanks to everyone who gave suggestions. To clarify, I had seen several landclass add-ons that claim to put a town where there's supposed to be a town, an industrial area where there's supposed to be an industrial area, but I'm not just looking to have a generic town appear I'm looking for the photoreal view. If it winds up looking flat at low altitude, I'm ok with that. Some of the suggestions given here sound like what I'm looking for. I'll have to give them a try when I get the time. 

Thanks again!

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