birdguy

Are FSX and P3D becoming step children?

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It was with great anticipation I read Orbx's Real Earth Washington review.  I was excited about it until I saw that it was for X-Plane.

Are FSX and P3D becoming Orbx's step children?

Noel

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ORBX has always focused it's resources on developing add-ons for low and slow VFR flying, so it makes perfect sense for them to concentrate on XP11.

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I think ORBX is just expanding their market- which makes sense.  Just looking at facebook groups and Youtube videos, view counts or membership size shows that X-plane reaches more people than P3D. There's a lot of money to be made by developing for both platforms, but I don't think that they are sacrificing one over the other.  I just wish ORBX would focus on more landclass/regions like Asia (which they've been promising for years) and Africa. 

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I have both P3DV4.4 and Xplane11, for me they go hand in hand, because if one sim does not have the aircraft I want, the other does. But as I use both sims I honestly see Xplane11 surpassing P3D4.4 in so many ways.  It is way ahead in autogen, landclass, and mesh, but lags behind in airport detail and just a tad in aircraft support.  But the game is changing.  It used to be argued that Xplane11 just could not duplicate the flight fidelity of the MSFS/P3D series. 

But Austin revealed details of how aerodynamics and blade theory worked that had been overlooked by add-on developers, so they gave it a try.  And I have to say, Xplane11 can capture a greater amount of the flight envelope vs. P3D, especially in the neglected rotorcraft area which I have learned to enjoy.  Even autogyros well written by VSkylabs work like the real thing, I know because I am well read and have talked to autogyro pilots and have seen them fly in airshows.  Powered Parachutes and Blimps are modeled well in Xplane11, there is even a Ramjet aircraft that will go into orbit if you manage the climbout well, quite amazing.

There was a movie in my time called "The Mouse that Roared" a great comedy about a tiny country that declared war in a friendly way on the US.  Austin has accomplished that with Xplane11.  I dissed Xplane10, it had issues and out of memory errors galore.  But with my specs, Xplane11 looks better and feels more real, like the real flying I have done and I am still learning, vs. P3D.

No doubt though, I have full confidence P3D will also answer back and stay step in step with Xplane11.  AeroflyFS2 will be a close third.  The competition is good, and none of these three sims, in my opinion, will die, because they heed their customers and take us seriously as students of aviation.  So no fears, no worries I say.

John

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I don't have XP11 so I'm asking. Is it true XP doesn't have textures for seasons?

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1 hour ago, dal330200 said:

I think ORBX is just expanding their market- which makes sense.  Just looking at facebook groups and Youtube videos, view counts or membership size shows that X-plane reaches more people than P3D. There's a lot of money to be made by developing for both platforms, but I don't think that they are sacrificing one over the other.  I just wish ORBX would focus on more landclass/regions like Asia (which they've been promising for years) and Africa. 

Exactly.  ORBX is in business to make money and they'll develop whatever they need to in order to achieve that goal.

I agree completely with you regarding the openLC scenery.  It is clear that ORBX has chosen to focus almost exclusively on the TrueEarth scenery at the expense of openLC, again because of sales considerations which I understand.  That doesn't make it any less disappointing, however.

If you look at their preview screenshot and release announcements it is almost funny how many times the word "TrueEarth" appears.  Maybe they should change their name from "ORBX" to "TrueEarth Inc."

Dave

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33 minutes ago, PATCO LCH said:

I don't have XP11 so I'm asking. Is it true XP doesn't have textures for seasons?

True, the default sim is endless Summer.

There are a couple of free Winter texture add-ons and one payware add-on for seasons. The TerraMaxx payware add-on works, but because it requires loading in a huge amount of data it will pause the sim. So it's not good for in-flight transitions. It's okay if you decide to fly in one season for an extended period. It also doesn't work on ortho-based terrain, just the default landclass scenery. And it doesn't automatically add snow to airports, which looks weird (there is a way for airport designers to incorporate the add-on, but it's not common). 

So, not an ideal situation. Austin (the X-Plane lead developer) has said in the past that he'd like to do seasons procedurally with effects programming and particle systems, not just a basic texture overlay. So trees would change color and drop leaves according to seasons, snow would accumulate or disappear on autogen buildings based on real weather input, and so on. Very ambitious, and we won't see this in the current XP11 cycle. Maybe in XP12, but nothing has been confirmed.

 

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I started out in 1992 with FS5.  I bought every new one that came out spaced about every two years.  In 2006 I bought FSX which I was very happy with.  I resisted the urges to move to P3D until v3 came out.  Then a year later I bought P3Dv4.

Not only did I have to buy the new simulators, but as they matured I also had to upgrade or buy a new computer from time to time.

I'm done buying flight simulators and computers.  I realize each new one is the latest and greatest until next year when the new latest and greatest comes out.

I own every Orbx scenery made for FSX/P3D.  An investment of about 3,000 dollars.  If they want to keep me as a customer they are going to have to keep making sceneries compatible with FSX/P3D because I am dropping out of the parade.  I've been marching to the drummer of every new simulator for 26 years.  It's time to be satisfied with what I have.  If Orbx is moving to XPlane at the expense of FSX/P3D I'm sorry to be losing their very fine future sceneries.

The last Orbx scenery I purchased was Sun Valley.  I installed it on P3Dv4 but was disappointed it was not available for P3Dv3 which I also have installed because of all the FSX aircraft that still work in it but not in V4.

I also still have FS2004 installed for the MAAM DC-3 and all the wonderful California Classic retro 1962 airports world wide it has to offer along with old airliner ai that goes with them.  The scenery might look cartoonish to some but California Classics fills a niche nobody else does and they are not moving up to P3D or XP11.

I understand business models and dropping a few old customers to gain more new ones.  But being an old customer left by the wayside I don't have to like it.

A word on loyalty.  As an octogenarian I still cling to old virtues such as loyalty versus money.  I keep watching TV commercials and get junk mail and telemarketer calls telling me how much I can save by switching my automobile insurance.  And I probably could save a couple hundred dollars by switching.  But I have had the same automobile insurance carrier for over 25 years.  I am not going to dump them after that long for 200 dollars a year.  They have been very good to me and settled three or four claims promptly over that period.  I will remain loyal to them.

Noel

 

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2 hours ago, birdguy said:

I realize each new one is the latest and greatest until next year when the new latest and greatest comes out.

I know you've heard of the cash cow Brother Noel. They have to keep that good rich butter milk flowing.😉🐄

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Posted (edited)

ORBX does what their head is in love with. After an FS9 start, it was FSX, turning to Prepar3d pretty early on. Next, he had a short romance with AeroflyFS, which unfortunately turned out not to be profitable and was dropped abruptly when he totally fell in love with X-Plane. 

ORBX could have made (and was expected to make) a lot of money if they had found a developer providing TE GB South for P3D at least on a par with Tony Wroblewski's X-Plane version. However, after the Prepar3d version of TE GB South for Prepar3d failed this looked as a fault of Prepar3d itself. Which is pretty unfair in my eyes, despite P3D certainly having a number of long-standing issues. As has X-Plane. It's a good question if the observed growing presence of X-Plane in social media initiated ORBX' movement towards it or being a result of it.

In any case, a lot of loyal Prepar3d users who made ORBX big are left in the rain and get the suggestion: Try X-Plane NOW! And buy all the sceneries, planes, tools and stuff anew. I agree to Noel and find this pretty unfair, but who cares about fairness those days.

Kind regards, Michael

Edited by pmb
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7 hours ago, birdguy said:

I started out in 1992 with FS5.  I bought every new one that came out spaced about every two years.  In 2006 I bought FSX which I was very happy with.  I resisted the urges to move to P3D until v3 came out.  Then a year later I bought P3Dv4.

Not only did I have to buy the new simulators, but as they matured I also had to upgrade or buy a new computer from time to time.

I'm done buying flight simulators and computers.  I realize each new one is the latest and greatest until next year when the new latest and greatest comes out.

Noel

 

And so it is with technology. 

At least a great classic car is still great no matter how old it is. 

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, pmb said:

ORBX does what their head is in love with. After an FS9 start, it was FSX, turning to Prepar3d pretty early on. Next, he had a short romance with AeroflyFS, which unfortunately turned out not to be profitable and was dropped abruptly when he totally fell in love with X-Plane. 

ORBX could have made (and was expected to make) a lot of money if they had found a developer providing TE GB South for P3D at least on a par with Tony Wroblewski's X-Plane version. However, after the Prepar3d version of TE GB South for Prepar3d failed this looked as a fault of Prepar3d itself. Which is pretty unfair in my eyes, despite P3D certainly having a number of long-standing issues. As has X-Plane. It's a good question if the observed growing presence of X-Plane in social media initiated ORBX' movement towards it or being a result of it.

In any case, a lot of loyal Prepar3d users who made ORBX big are left in the rain and get the suggestion: Try X-Plane NOW! And buy all the sceneries, planes, tools and stuff anew. I agree to Noel and find this pretty unfair, but who cares about fairness those days.

Kind regards, Michael

If I recall correctly, it wasn't too long ago that ORBX stated categorically that they would *not* be developing for X-Plane.  Not too long before that there was a statement that there would be 1 to 2 openLC releases per year.  There were also statements about 2 scenery regions being released per year.  According to past statements, by now most of the U.S. and Europe should have been covered with region scenery and the entire world should have been covered in openLC.  Hopefully openLC and region scenery won't be abandoned entirely in favor of the next new thing in scenery design.  Speaking of the next new thing in scenery design, TrueEarth is pretty nice, but it's simply not practical on a large scale.  It will be eventually, but not in the near future in my opinion.  It is niche scenery as far as I'm concerned.

If anyone remembers "Bird's Eye View" textures then maybe like me you're not really surprised.  ORBX is very big on marketing, part of which is making bold, exciting, and sometimes teasing statements in order to garner interest and get attention.  I get that you need to make sales and profit to be successful, but if you frequently change your plans that can leave customers with a lot of uncertainty, not to mention being a turn-off.

I no longer take ORBX's "roadmaps" seriously.

Dave

 

Edited by dave2013
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Hope not, 

unless ELITE builds a bridge into X-Plane too ... For the time being P3Dv4.5 makes all sense again to me, just as a Visuals Generator, for my ELITE v9 setup. 

Do I miss the variety and detail of even default airports / airfields in X-plane 11 - of course I do - but having P3D for visuals is way better than having to be restricted to Genview... even if I just own ORBX FTX Global and an Aerosoft airport....

Then, for those willing to play the Big Iron, there's still pretty much only P3D as a valuable choice, mostly due to PMDG and their excellent line of products, or, a bridge similar to that I use with ELITE between Aerowinx PSX and P3D, in that case also X-Plane, although not fully ported to version 11 yet...

But with the development of X-Plane growing, and becoming not only profitable but remarkably gorgeous like what I see in that Washington product and the UK series by ORBX, it's natural that developers attention starts finally shifting / widening towards X-Plane too, and let's not forget about Aerofly FS 2...

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3 hours ago, dave2013 said:

I no longer take ORBX's "roadmaps" seriously.

I don't take any of the mid- to long-term predictions of JV seriously anymore. Add the former statement Prepar3d will be the long-term initial-release platform of all of their sceneries. Plus, I could add an extended list from the past, notably on the Global/Vector/OpenLC product range.

I understand any enterprise has do adapt to changing market needs. However, such bold statements being violated and revoked within a few months or even less is simply noncredible.

I say this despite I own nearly all of their products and enjoy them as they have a number of really gifted developers in the crew. 

Kind regards, Michael

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You do realise that the lead developer for the TrueEarth product range (Tony Wroblewski) is an XPlane man, and therefore presumably created the tools and libraries for that particular platform? That being the case, why would Xplane not be the lead platform for the TrueEarth series?

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Well, OpenLC Africa and Australia v2 are also being worked on, so it's not that P3D development has stopped in favour of X-Plane, it's simply that they have a bigger team working on different sim products simultaneously. I doubt such products will be seen on X-Plane for some time (if ever), so it's all tit-for-tat. All the recent airports except my own Barton are ports of products that are already on P3D.

Yes there is a lot of excitement and noise over TrueEarth Washington (and I'm very happy about it 🙂), but it doesn't mean the teams that were already there working on P3D products have stopped.. Nothing has changed in that regard

 

 

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Posted (edited)
54 minutes ago, Christopher Low said:

You do realise that the lead developer for the TrueEarth product range (Tony Wroblewski) is an XPlane man, and therefore presumably created the tools and libraries for that particular platform? That being the case, why would Xplane not be the lead platform for the TrueEarth series?

That's one thing. Another is that as someone who has tried TE GB for both platforms, I can clearly see why developers would prefer to work with XP. There are things which simply cannot be done efficiently with P3D, mainly to do with vector roads and autogen. P3D's vector roads have always been an ugly mess with no ability to create intersections, overpasses, interchanges, etc. (other than placing custom objects which then do not align smoothly with the adjoining roads). Building autogen is also very limited, making it impossible to create things such as UK-style terraced houses (or, as noted by TE NL users, anything resembling Rijtjeshuizen), or anything other than simple square/rectangular buildings, for that matter. As a result, a huge amount of custom objects have to be created, with takes a lot of work and causes issues with loading times and performance.

And as far as performance goes, on my modest system (including a hold-me-over GTX 1060), I get perfectly acceptable frame rates in XP and a stuttery mess in P3D v4.4/4.5 in the same areas of TE GB at comparable settings.

Now don't get me wrong, I still use P3D as my main sim and I'm well aware of XP's limitations (to me, the awful weather representation and lack of proper AI/ATC are the most important ones), but the point is that Orbx is a scenery developer/publisher rather than a "complete flightsim experience" provider. So, if one platform gives them much more freedom to realize their vision (and makes it easier to do that), I can understand why they are shifting their focus.

Not that I particularly like it as I'm inclined to keep "flying" mainly in P3D in the foreseeable future, but I do see their point.

Just my $0.02... 😉

Tym

Edited by tymk
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Posted (edited)
Quote

Well, OpenLC Africa and Australia v2 are also being worked on, so it's not that P3D development has stopped in favour of X-Plane

I just hope that TrueEarth GB Central for P3D v4 has not been forgotten about. I understand that ORBx has a lot on its plate at the moment, but now that I have seen how much better southern England and Wales looks when compared to my existing UK photographic scenery, it is somewhat frustrating to have to wait for an extended period of time before I am able to enjoy the next volume in the TrueEarth GB series (particularly when the base photoscenery images have already been obtained).

Edited by Christopher Low

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3 minutes ago, Christopher Low said:

I just hope that TrueEarth GB Central for P3D v4 has not been forgotten about.

No, as JV already mentioned, ORBX have taken on additional people to work on these ports, as well as future ones such as Washington, etc..

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Posted (edited)

Orbx are artists, and want to keep innovating and making the best scenery they can. Here is an example. I watched the Orbx Twitch stream last night where they flew around PNW for P3Dv4 and visited many of their iconic airports. It looked great, but out of curiosity I played JV’s sneak preview Washington trailer on a second monitor at the same time. The difference was profound to say the least. As in there was no comparison. The XP11 Washington looks REAL, but the landclass PNW looked repetitive with tracks and roads painted on top and with laughably oversized autogen houses.

I think they know this, and have found a platform which allows them to realise their creative ambitions much sooner. Does it mean they are abandoning P3D? Not based on their past 12 months’ new title releases which weighs heavily in favour of P3D. Most of what is being made for Xp are ports anyway.

The P3D community’s smugness is wearing off really quickly now. Once upon a time they used to taunt the XP community with ‘but have you got Orbx?’. Now that Orbx has embraced XP it’s turned it’s ‘They have abandoned us!!’. Little do they realise most of what Orbx is making for XP has already been available for FSx/P3D for over a decade, yet they still feel jealous.

Edited by fta2017

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Posted (edited)

fta217 are you saying that TrueEarth Washington wouldn't look good on P3Dv4?   You are comparing apples and oranges here.  You checked PNW against the TrueEarth Washington trailer.  That's no comparison at all. 

That's like comparing the stock P3Dv4 Washington to Orbx PNW. 

The only real comparison would be to check TrueEarth Washington on P3Dv4 against TrueEarth Washington on XP. 

It's not a feeling of jealousy, it's a feeling of being left behind.

Noel

Edited by birdguy

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1 hour ago, fta2017 said:

Orbx are artists, and want to keep innovating and making the best scenery they can. Here is an example. I watched the Orbx Twitch stream last night where they flew around PNW for P3Dv4 and visited many of their iconic airports. It looked great, but out of curiosity I played JV’s sneak preview Washington trailer on a second monitor at the same time. The difference was profound to say the least. As in there was no comparison. The XP11 Washington looks REAL, but the landclass PNW looked repetitive with tracks and roads painted on top and with laughably oversized autogen houses.

I think they know this, and have found a platform which allows them to realise their creative ambitions much sooner. Does it mean they are abandoning P3D? Not based on their past 12 months’ new title releases which weighs heavily in favour of P3D. Most of what is being made for Xp are ports anyway.

The P3D community’s smugness is wearing off really quickly now. Once upon a time they used to taunt the XP community with ‘but have you got Orbx?’. Now that Orbx has embraced XP it’s turned it’s ‘They have abandoned us!!’. Little do they realise most of what Orbx is making for XP has already been available for FSx/P3D for over a decade, yet they still feel jealous.

I wish I had disk space for Orbx P3D or Xplane11, they are indeed artists, they craft their work so well, I remember downloading a sample around Seattle some time back for FSX.  They prove to our community how well scenery add ons can look in any sim.

John

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, tymk said:

(or, as noted by TE NL users, anything resembling Rijtjeshuizen)

Hear hear! 😉

Quote

And as far as performance goes, on my modest system (including a hold-me-over GTX 1060), I get perfectly acceptable frame rates in XP and a stuttery mess in P3D v4.4/4.5 in the same areas of TE GB at comparable settings.

Define acceptable framerates, please. 20, 30, 40...? And is that with enhancement addons like Ultra Weather XP or anything? One of the things I liked about XP (apart from the great lighting engine) were the detailed roads: they make things look so much more real when flying low...! In P3D they usually look bad and don't get me started on AFS2 roads... I am seriously considering installing XP 11 again and to buy TE GB for it but I don't have any addons for XP 11 apart from one GA plane. I think it'll look word not allowed without addons compared to the video's I've seen. And I am afraid fps will hardly reach 20 with TE GB installed.

EDIT
Had a look as some more XP TE GB video's and I noticed houses aren't placed as extremely dense as in AFS2. Might be a setting in the sim but I wouldn't want to lower the amount of buildings I can have in AFS2 in order to get acceptable fps in XP. I think that when it comes to performance AFS2 is a clear winner and best suited for TE scenery...

Edited by Guest

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Sorry guys, this is not artistry. It certainly takes skill and perseverance to translate a whole bunch of beautiful orthoimagery to a flightsim, but it isn't what I call creativity. You want artistry in a video game. Take a look at Red dead Redemption 2. That's artistry.

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, jabloomf1230 said:

Sorry guys, this is not artistry. It certainly takes skill and perseverance to translate a whole bunch of beautiful orthoimagery to a flightsim, but it isn't what I call creativity. You want artistry in a video game. Take a look at Red dead Redemption 2. That's artistry.

I disagree, I have converted a lot of Orthoscenery for Xplane11 and have paid and also made Orthoscenery for P3DV4.4.  It is a creative art, it adds immersion to a sim to fly over a realistic landscape, and adds VFR and dead reckoning skills to a hobby often overshadowed by IFR navigation.  Orthoscenery makes coming into the vicinity of an airport quite realistic, as airports in the real world are not as easy to spot as airports in a sim, non Ortho world.  My CFI in Light Sport, an entirely VFR form of General Aviation although I did use a gps in flight, always preached to me to look outside more and instrument scan less, so I could learn as stick and rudder pilots well know, to fly by the seat of my pants.  That type of flying makes coordinated flight instinctive.  My CFI had me "trace the box" at altitude, using rudder and aileron to outline a virtual box in the sky, teaching me visual coordinated flight with less reliance on instruments.  I was taught instrument flying as a last resort, in case weather, like Arizona's sudden dust storms that can come from 50 or 60 miles away to your aircraft in minutes, so flight into such weather could end up safely.

PS, looked at the video game you mentioned on youtube, amazing!

John

Edited by John_Cillis

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