markk71

New development update from A2A this weekend!

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I am quite sure the USAF projects will be brought to our hobby at some time in the future.  The best news to gather from that is the USAF is essentially paying for Accusim's growth, instead of just the FS hobbist.  The lessons they learned from the T-6 II and T-38 projects they can certainly apply to other things.  I would bet there are a few other aircraft on the stove as well not mentioned in the report that will benefit greatly from these USAF contracts.  Think about this....our (US citizen) tax dollars are helping A2A bring us better addons...finally a positive use for tax dollars LOL

The Aerostar is fantastic news, can't ask for a better high performance twin to scare yourselves in.  It is kind of like a Mustang, MU-2, or any other serious HP airplane, it requires a very proficient pilot or it will bite you hard.  I hope A2A has a setting to have engine failures after takeoff, so you guys can see just how scary that phase of flight in a twin can be and knowing A2A's attention to detail on flight dynamics, their Aerostar or whatever other twin they do in the meantime, you will know why the FAA requires twin pilots memorize the 11 Vmc factors for a MEL checkride.

Good stuff ahead!

Cheers

TJ
 

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, pilottj said:

I am quite sure the USAF projects will be brought to our hobby at some time in the future. 

And yet in the Facebook comments, A2A said...

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we promise not to release stuff all at the same time and that T-6 might not make it to a consumer product.

...and...
 

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Lets hope we can get a consumer product out of it, it will require quite a lot of extra work to make a product for the T-6 II.

...and...

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The T-6 might not make a consumer release

So... I admire your faith, but they don't seem to share it.

Now, granted, to your larger point, they did go on to say...

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but for sure we now have a Turbo Prop modelled in Accu-sim ready to be unleashed. And not only that but one of the most popular Turbo prop engines.

So there could be a "peace dividend" down the line... but no telling when.

And other things in the announcement - like the Spitfires - are clearly institutional projects that don't have a consumer track.

I agree it's all very exciting if you're a fan of the company... but the excitement isn't as consumer-focused as some had hoped, and some patience is going to be needed.

Edited by Alan_A
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Bummer that these are not in the immediate consumer pipeline, but a big congratulations to A2A for the Air Force contract. That has to be a reliable source of revenue and  for A2A as a company...and money in the bank sure makes it easier to get things done. It is really remarkable to see how much momentum PC based flight simulation has picked up within the aviation training space in the past couple of years.

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Scott said in the forums their plan is to bring the T6 out to the public

"Sorry it wasn't clear but we plan and expect to release the T-6 Texan II to the public but there's a lot of work to do between now and then"

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3 hours ago, ryanbatcund said:

Scott said in the forums their plan is to bring the T6 out to the public

"Sorry it wasn't clear but we plan and expect to release the T-6 Texan II to the public but there's a lot of work to do between now and then"

Thanks, hadn't seen that - a helpful clarification, or maybe, given what they'd said on Facebook, a policy change.  Should be a fun aircraft when it comes along.

6 hours ago, snglecoil said:

It is really remarkable to see how much momentum PC based flight simulation has picked up within the aviation training space in the past couple of years.

Agree.  Showing my age here, but I remember trying to talk about PC-based simulation on CompuServe's AVSig (Aviation Special Interest Group) thirty years ago and being shouted down.  Great forum - one of the best I've ever been a part of - but that was pretty much a banned topic.

Worth noting that A2A isn't the only USAF contractor out there - per this Sim Outhouse post and a few that follow it, Milviz developed their T-38C for the Air Force Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) program, which is more traditional and more established than Pilot Training Next (PTN), which is where A2A has been focused.  Really a lot of professional training action going on.

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Posted (edited)

deleted for personal reasons

Edited by JB3DG

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On 5/15/2019 at 7:17 PM, pilottj said:

The Aerostar is fantastic news, can't ask for a better high performance twin to scare yourselves in.  It is kind of like a Mustang, MU-2, or any other serious HP airplane, it requires a very proficient pilot or it will bite you hard.  I hope A2A has a setting to have engine failures after takeoff, so you guys can see just how scary that phase of flight in a twin can be and knowing A2A's attention to detail on flight dynamics, their Aerostar or whatever other twin they do in the meantime, you will know why the FAA requires twin pilots memorize the 11 Vmc factors for a MEL checkride.

But will the A2A Aerostar have a trap door in the floor?

And that T-6 Texan II -- that would be wonderful to be released to the public for the sim.  I wonder what it's missing at present?

 

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5 minutes ago, domkle said:

The plot thickens

It does, doesn't it?

They're asking the right questions about the tradeoffs between "lite" releases and their brand reputation - which, of course, also points to the fact that their brand reputation is a bit of a bind: compromise it, or seem to be compromising it and you dilute the brand a bit and risk angering people.  CAPFlyer's suggestion about reviving the Aircraft Factory brand was a good one but in a way that just points to the problem - I'm not sure how well they ever did with Aircraft Factory, because "lite" isn't what attracts people to A2A.

The elephant in this particular thread is development resources - reading between the lines, they don't seem to be thick on the ground, at least for consumer projects.  The professional side must be demanding a lot from them.

I'm not flying any A2A at the moment - I've parted ways with the warbird community for reasons, and GA was never my thing, so I'm finally making progress on airliners, which is where I started as an aviation buff - but it's interesting to watch.  I don't envy them having to balance all their priorities and assignments.

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1 minute ago, Alan_A said:

It does, doesn't it?

 

I was amazed by the apparent absurdity of the question : wha does a partially completed aricraft mean ? Yes, they are in a bind. They want to grow without taking debt, a difficult exercise. So they need cash...

 Aircraft Factory ? Do we need another Carenado ?  Killing their market edge is a dangerous game. They already have Milviz breathing on their neck on the same market segment.

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I guess a "partially completed aircraft" could mean anything - one-and-a-half wings?  But I took it to mean, "an aircraft that's complete in many respects but doesn't deliver what 'Accu-Sim' would imply."  If I had to bet, it's that the turbine model and/or other systems aren't fully realized (aircraft systems might not be the focus of an Air Force training sim) and it'd be a huge task to develop them to an Accu-Sim standard.  Pure guesswork on my part but it sounds like something along those lines.

A second brand could work well for them.  I think the original idea for Aircraft Factory was that it was going to be a home for projects by independent developers - not just lighter but not built by A2A.  And mostly they modeled airplanes that weren't available for flight test (the Accu-Sim standard again).  There were some good Aircraft Factory projects - the Uhu was nicely done, and it was an exotic subject where you wouldn't really expect any developer to produce a "full-fat" version.  But over time Aircraft Factory seemed to get left behind - the projects were few and far between.  I also have to wonder if the P-51H wasn't a mistake - hard to sell a lite Mustang (even if it's a different airplane) when what people want is your Accu-Sim one.  Which points to the big problem - a second "lite" brand only works if it's active and if it contrasts to your main brand - AND if your main brand is ALSO active.  In other words, if you're producing Accu-Sim products on a reasonable schedule, then you can publish some Aircraft Factory stuff and attract some attention (and generate some revenue).  But if you're not producing Accu-Sim products and Aircraft Factory is the only thing you're doing, then Aircraft Factory looks like a not-very-satisfying attempt to keep a toe in the consumer waters while you deal with your other priorities.  And yes, the risk is that you wake up one morning and find out that you're Carenado... and that somebody else has gotten his act together and turned into A2A.

Of course it's impossible to know from the outside what they're actually thinking or dealing with.  But the poll makes it sound like they're flailing a little - or, more charitably, trying to balance some hard choices.  "The goal is professional-grade, consumer-focused and possible with current resources - pick two out of three."  If so, not a happy thing to figure out.

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The military isn’t going to care about whether the window fogs up if you forget to turn the air on.  A lot of those little things that we crave for their immersion value will get left off a military trainer. But I bet the flight model will be spot on - that IS what the military cares about.

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2 hours ago, domkle said:

I was amazed by the apparent absurdity of the question : wha does a partially completed aricraft mean ?

That was precisely my reaction as well, as the only real answer to the question as asked is, "That depends", and that answer wasn't available.

 

Scott

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2 hours ago, Alan_A said:

"lite" isn't what attracts people to A2A.

Pre-xactly!

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They've posted more information on their Facebook page about what these would and wouldn't include:

"We've discussed in the past the "bucket" theory, and that is every product is limited by how much this bucket can hold. Basically, the bucket is time and resources. So I would ask again, what if we released this line of Official Military Trainers, that would have the following:
- Top level PBR modeling
- The highest level of flight physics
- Brand new turbine and turbo prop physics
- Accu-Sim sound
- Military manual approved for the public

What won't fit in this bucket will be:
- In depth manual with history
- Maintenance Hangar
- Walk around"

Seems like a no brainer yes to me personally.

Their post also clarifies that these would be a separate product line.

Edited by regis9

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This was a statement made by Scott, "I put the T-6a and a T-38a through Accu-Sim flight tests.  We've built these engines brand new, from the ground up.  The level of fidelity is crazy good."

Then the missing parts he mentioned were things like Walk around and hanger. I had voted No but i've decided if the (possibly mis-named as incomplete) were labeled some thing other than the current Accu-Sim or Flight Factory models

 

*lol regis9 posted same time

Edited by jimcarrel

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Well, if that's the only set of compromises they have in mind, then it's much easier to say "yes."

Which makes me wonder why they described it as "partially completed," which suggests a lot more missing stuff than just the historical background, the hangar and the walk-around. As it stands now, none of their military aircraft feature the walk-around, so we're only talking about two features omitted.

They could have saved themselves some trouble by just describing up front what they had in mind.  Next time, they really ought to take a couple of breaths and think through what they're going to say before they say it. Company in crisis?  Likely not.  Mangled communications?  Definitely.

Edited by Alan_A

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4 hours ago, regis9 said:

They've posted more information on their Facebook page about what these would and wouldn't include:

"We've discussed in the past the "bucket" theory, and that is every product is limited by how much this bucket can hold. Basically, the bucket is time and resources. So I would ask again, what if we released this line of Official Military Trainers, that would have the following:
- Top level PBR modeling
- The highest level of flight physics
- Brand new turbine and turbo prop physics
- Accu-Sim sound
- Military manual approved for the public

What won't fit in this bucket will be:
- In depth manual with history
- Maintenance Hangar
- Walk around"

Seems like a no brainer yes to me personally.

Their post also clarifies that these would be a separate product line.

Thank you for the headup. A classic case of a developer who doesn’t read his customer base very well. The walk around and maintenance hangar are merely  gimmicks . Even if A2A is proud of them, I certainly  do not buy their planes because of them but for their flight and engine modeling! As for the historic part of the manual, there is something called Wikipedia. Yes, that poll was absurd after all. 

Looking forward to their release.

Edited by domkle
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With that clarification I'm now solidly in the "Yes" camp as well.

 

Scott

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If there is no maintenance hangar, does that mean there are no failures modeled?  Will the aircraft still be persistent?  That’s a big part of Accu-sim to me, and I really do treat my A2A planes differently because of it.

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3 hours ago, _Gladius_ said:

If there is no maintenance hangar, does that mean there are no failures modeled?  Will the aircraft still be persistent?  That’s a big part of Accu-sim to me, and I really do treat my A2A planes differently because of it.

Gentile gives some infos about that in this thread from page 5 

https://a2asimulations.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=68331&start=60

Failures and some weathering will be modeled and some persistence too. An interesting concept is having variants of the same aircraft at different levels of wear and tear. Something broken will not be carried over though.

 

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