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I had the last version of Fly Unlimited, which was then much ahead of its time.However, as MS became more sophisticated, and payware aircraft more realistic, I scraped my Fly U3 sim. I think I gave it to a kid down the steet.The question I have is why some continue to use the Fly U3 sim exclusively, when other flight sim technology and aircraft have caught up, and passed Fly U3.What is it that you find in Fly U3 that is superior to FS9 and payware aircraft such as PMDG 737NG? What am I missing to understand?Stanner

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Good question.Different people will give different answers. There's no doubt that MSFS has now gone way ahead of FU3 in most areas, better graphics, more complex animations, more add-ins etc. Here's some of my personal reasons why I haven't jumped on the MSFS bandwagon.1) I switched to FU3 because of MS taking over FS - and the enormous disappointment after this at the incredibly slow rate of progress in developing FS into a realistic sim. Somehow in FS5 and FS98, they lost the feel of flight which Bruce Artwick had captured so well. Examples are a) poor modelling of turbulence (I don't know and don't care if they have fixed this now) :( no modelling of vertical air movement, especially the interaction between planes in close proximity, airflow across ridges (so gliding is very artifical in MSFS), storm cells etc. c) flying by lookup tables rather than flying by reasonable modelling of interaction of plane components with airstreams across the surfaces (cf laminar flow modelling of X-plane). If FU3 can get to better than 1% accuracy over the full range of flight from negative airspeeds up to structural limits, why can't MSFS? d) lousy scenery, lousy clouds etc in FS5, FS98.2) I have flown the "heavies" to death in previous flight sims, and don't enjoy being a bus driver. FU3 is mainly a GA sim, which IMHO is MSFS's weakest area. Remember that apart from ATP, sims did not model ATC until recently. 3) I also switched to FU3 for positive reasons, and what I got with the package was perfectly adequate and has been ever since. FU3 invented megascenery before it was ever called that. They also developed superb weather effects, superb atmosphere modelling, flight dynamics, detailed terrain, fog & haze, AI planes etc long before MSFS even knew they existed. Only recently has MSFS (using ex-FU3 personnel I believe) started to model atmospheric effects well. Those goals were achieved sufficiently well in FU3 for me to remain happy with the product.4) DOn't even start me on payware. I have three megasceneries, over 100 aircraft, 1000's of scenery models, scenery packages, superb AI models, etc without paying more than the download cost from Avsim. Why would I get MSFS payware? I don't spend my flying time outside the aircraft looking at the sunlight glinting off the flaps. Very few real world pilots do either.5) I have invested my hobby time in developing things for FU3, in this way trying to give something back for all the people that have given to me, so there is a real sense of community and enjoyment in doing this. If I were to do this in the MSFS world, there value would be measured in days or hours, and I would be just a little fish in a big pond ....That said, there is still enormous enjoyment in loading up a plane in FU3 and flying it. I would wish the colour depth was better, that the clouds were better modelled, that there were more axles available for scenery models, etc, but its good enough for me for now. Which is,as you said, surprising given that its an old sim now.Cheers,Robert.

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Oh, this is like showing a red rag to a bull ;-)Robert has highlighted many important reasons why some of us choose to use FU3 over MSFS. In my opinion, the quality of FS took a nosedive when FS5 was released. That had (IMO) the worst graphics ever seen in a flight simulator, bar NONE. The clean, uncluttered look of FS4 was replaced with horrible, shimmering textures from the twilight zone :-eekYes, it's true that MSFS now has impressive looking planes, fabulously detailed airports, an ATC system, and other bits and bobs. The problems start when we get to the flight models, those scenery textures, and the general interface.Robert is spot on with respect to the flight models. They just don't feel right....AT ALL. Decent flight modelling should simulate the real world forces acting on a plane. Unfortunately, Microsoft insist on sticking with their "lookup tables" method, but this has one very large problem. Simply put...the developer needs to make sure that ALL envelopes of flight are covered. If you forget to include data for a particular combination of airspeed/flap position/trim position/angle of attack, then you're knackered. The software will NOT accurately simulate the flight characteristics of a plane under these conditions.Of course, I know full well that careful programming using the lookup table method can recreate the flight characteristics of particular planes in amazing detail, but that isn't the point. When I fly a simulated plane, I want to know that its flight characteristics are being calculated using REAL WORLD PHYSICAL LAWS. That way, ALL areas of the flight envelope are catered for, irrespective of whether the plane in question is flying EXACTLY like its real world counterpart or not. I'm not looking for simulated NUMBERS. I want simulated FEEL.As for ground textures, I personally think that MSFS still suffers in this area. It seems that Microsoft are more concerned with how the scenery looks from 35,000 feet. The problems start when we approach the ground. In short, some of those ground textures look "butt ugly", and there's nothing that puts me off a flight simulator more than ugly ground textures. A little bit of thought and care is all that is required to solve this problem. They just need to make the textures more pleasing to the eye (as opposed to "super accurate looking from the edge of space") :-rollThe interface in MSFS has always been a problem for me. I hate the complexity. I hate the way that every viewpoint (and most of them are crap, by the way) is accessed via a single key, requiring the user to cycle through them. That's just daft. I also don't like the spot view. I mean, Looking Glass nailed the "floating camera, allowing the user to view their plane from any angle and any distance" aspect of flight simulation over a DECADE ago ! Why can't Microsoft do this ???? It's also extremely annoying that I can't start my plane from a specific parking spot at each airport (rather than at the end of the runway itself). It would also be nice to have the trim set to a comfortable position for take off. I suppose that isn't totally realistic, but then I'm not looking to become a REAL WORLD pilot. I just want to enjoy the feeling of flight, in a comfortable, safe environment (I don't really like flying in the REAL world). I don't want to have to desperately mess around with the trim before take off, trying to find the correct position. I literally have no idea what the correct position IS. I don't know. Maybe I'm missing something. Is there a way to set the trim for take off, or is it just guesswork ?What about floatplanes ? Does MSFS simulate these with any degree of accuracy yet ? FU2 did this beautifully way back in 1997, so Microsoft certainly SHOULD have sorted this out by now.I also take Robert's point regarding addons. In many cases, getting lots of shiny new planes, wonderfully detailed airports, and detailed scenery involves buying multiple addons. I have mentioned in the past what it would take to get MSFS up to a level of visual accuracy that would satisfy me. I took the UK as an example, and the total (including the base product itself) was something like

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Stanner,The plesher I get from a sim is flying by the seat of my pants in a glider.Not so much the reading of instuments, but feeling the littl changes in terbulance thatindicate the presants of verticaly mooving air, "is it a thermal? is it slope lift? is it wave lift? how strong is it? how big is it?or is it douwn draft"? All thees things are modeld in FU3 much mor realisticly than in other sims. Yes payware aircraft do look more realistic, most of them look fantastic, but thay only flyand feel as good as the sim you use them in will alouw. In this regard other flight sims hav not yet caught up.Also hear in FU3 you can be a big fish in a small pond, we all know eech other well, andwe are all frends.glidernut.

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Hello Stanner.You have a good question, asking why some still use this old software back from 1997-1999.I can only speak for myself, after taking the license on gliders, and also flying RC model aircrafts for many years, I decided to try the new flying sport made for the PC.I stumbled into the FU series back in 98, and was hooked.I also installed the MS98,- MS2000,-MS2002 to try other sims, but this was removed after a short time.The MS software was for me a sterile product, even with airports all over the world.I'd better be in a small area with A lot of active components like interactive ATC,- moving objects, A lot af AI traffic around, and a sceenery that was like being there.The weather engine was soo good, that a tour in a glider was like being there under the clouds like in a real glider, the effects of this aspect was very impressive.Fs 2004 is mutch better when it comes to models and eyecandies, but I really miss the weather aspect and the effect /forces when it comes to seaplanes and gliders. This is for me a very important thing even flying on a computer.In my opinion the FU series is still today the best floatplane sim around.The script-language implemented in this sim, making challenges is so powerful, and flexi, so you can make almost anything here.It is like writing a book. you can do almost anything to make a flight a new adventure compete against the clock for another goal, or make a new scary flight through canyons with different effects.-goals.This is also a missing part for other sims.Another big deal for me still using FU3, is the amount of high quality free addons produced by so many friendly people here in this community.Take a look into the library, and you will see more addons than even the LG staff would have dreamed of.This way this flightsim has never died, and is still going on with new things.Over the years many people here has sticked together, become friends over a long time, and helping each other making new projects all the time.So,.- it is still not the end.Some of the reasons why I still use the old FU software.Take care.Lars Peter.

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CHRIS! Is that you???? Hey welcome back!And I hope I didn't sound too critical Mr Stanner - I imagine that you had just completed a dream flight in your new PMDG 737NG and had that "it doesn't get better than this" feeling, and we all go snapping off at you. As far as I'm concerned its great to hear from you, you are always welcome here, and (OUCH!) you're right and we're wrong, BUT ---- I won't be changing anytime soon !!(I'm too old and stubborn, just ask anyone here).Cheers all,Robert.

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Hi Stanner,It's just because I feel it as "my Sim".I have FS98,FS2002 and FS2004 but use it just as reference for some model placements into FU3 :-). I hate the long loading time, the rubber band zoom, the missing camera views the missing ease of use to change view with the joystick on the fly and the painted Landscape with misplaced streets and buildings .. but I agree the new clouds and the smoke effects are great in MSFS. In MSFS flying a Hawker Hunter is about the same speed feeling than flying the Cessna.I am missing FLED in other sims.With FU3 I have learned to modify nearly all parts needed so I can build new region, new models, new AI planes and new flyable planes. There will never be a new release every 2 years making my work obsolete and also the work of the other FU3 group members.There is no payware :-)This group is a small but nice international family.With FU3 it was possible to simulate my country in a very close photographic view as seen in a real flight. http://www.agtim.ch/fu3/images/AMB12.JPG :-wave agtim

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>Robert is spot on with respect to the flight models. They just>don't feel right....AT ALL. Decent flight modelling should>simulate the real world forces acting on a plane.>Unfortunately, Microsoft insist on sticking with their "lookup>tables" method, but this has one very large problem. Simply>put...the developer needs to make sure that ALL envelopes of>flight are covered. If you forget to include data for a>particular combination of airspeed/flap position/trim>position/angle of attack, then you're knackered. The software>will NOT accurately simulate the flight characteristics of a>plane under these conditions.>>Of course, I know full well that careful programming using the>lookup table method can recreate the flight characteristics of>particular planes in amazing detail, but that isn't the point.>When I fly a simulated plane, I want to know that its flight>characteristics are being calculated using REAL WORLD PHYSICAL>LAWS. That way, ALL areas of the flight envelope are catered>for, irrespective of whether the plane in question is flying>EXACTLY like its real world counterpart or not. I'm not>looking for simulated NUMBERS. I want simulated FEEL.Excuse me,.... cough, cough....... :-hah But since I "really" have flown some very interesting real aircraft, such as the Pitt's, Marchetti SF260, many Cessna, Pipers, gliders, and numerous experimental/homebuilt class such as the Van's RV's......I can comment (with actual background) on Microsoft's lookup tables, and the "feel" of flight. As it turns out, some of the best "feel" of flight models anywhere, just happen to be 3rd party addons for MSFS. The RealAir Simulations "Spitfire" is about as good as it gets, when it comes to feeling the forces of torque and slipstream on the takeoff roll, and the perfect balance of power adjustment to weight on the approach, and just the perfect "feel" of being airborne! Their Marchetti SF260 model is excellent too, as I've flown the real thing for comparison.The "feel" of an MSFS model can be extremely good. I knew that MS was up to something good, when they released Microsoft's Combat II years ago. The feel went from mediocre in FS98 to something special. The lookup tables are just another way of doing it, and can work very well at getting the "feel" down pat. thanks for your time... :D L.Adamson --- past/present owner of all FU series, FLY, X-Plane & MSFS

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Hey, its great to have so many joining in - at last a thread with some bite! I learnt "how to fly" (simulation anyway) using the early FS sims - that's where I learnt about VFR, IFR, VOR, ADF, ILS etc, and went on to learn about ATC from ATP (SAA - Sorry About the Abbreviations). In FS98 I had a Spitfire, a freeware download with nice panel from someone (and its too long to remember), and I really enjoyed flying around England in it (sharing flying time with struggling to keep a helicopter from behaving like a spinning top whenever I flew slow), and much as I love FU3, its something I've always missed - I would love a Spitfire to fly in FU3!Ahhh, the sacrifices we have to make here in FU3 land.Anyway, no-one has commented on the vertical airflow modelling and its amazing absence from MSFS. Is this just not important? Its crucial to gliders and small GA in rough terrain. And thermals aren't just switched on when you're in a glider or load a specific add-in - they affect all planes. IMHO they're essential to correct feel. Wind interacts with the ground, dark water absorbs heat, turbulence is not just random fluctuations, etc etc. So give me a spitfire and some better cloud modelling, and FU3 would be perfect. No, give me better than 256 colour palettes too. Oh yes, and I need ...OK, better stop there or I'll be changing camps and have the FU3 regulators gunning for me.Cheers all,Robert.

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Larry,You will notice that I mentioned that (if done carefully), lookup tables can be very accurate (in the same way that the motion of the planets is accurately calculated by using complex algorithms that have been designed for the task; as opposed to simply integrating the motion by calculating the gravitational forces directly).I'm not going to argue with you. FU3 allows me to fly planes in the way that I like. MSFS does not. It really is as simple as that.Chris Low.

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Robert,Yes, it's me. I have been checking the forum continuously over the past several months, but I have been too busy with another project to do any flying. If I can get Jon to part with one of his Saab 340s (they're harder to get hold of than a Guantanamo Bay exit pass), I will do a bit of low speed flight testing ;-)Chris Low.

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Thats twice in 2 days we hav Chris Low hear.We ARE doing well.

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Gentlemen:Thank all of you for your replies. I got the following from your posts:1. The airflows are more accurate in Fly U3.2. You like the interactiave ATC3. You like the graphics4. You like the GA aircraft.I cannot speak about the airflows. In FS9: a. you can get live ATC in VATSIM or IVAO b. you can get interactive ATC software c. you can obtain stunning scenery (payware) d. you can download live weather e. you can fly excellent freeware aircraft, both GA and commercial. f. you can fly superb payware aircraft, both GA and commercial. h. you can fly in different terrain around the worldSorry, but I just do not get it. However, one of the wonderful things about life is that we are all different. Imagine if we all liked the same thing, dressed the same, ate the same food etc.? How borrowing it would be. Continued success with your FlyU3 sim.Stanner

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Yes, real life can sometimes be a right nuisance. Anyway, welcome back and join in!

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Just adding my opinion -- even though I like all good flight simulators FU3 is the one that will stay. An obvious reason why it stays is that there won't be any next version ;( However, as Ansgar mentioned this has one advantage -- addons and tweaks won't be rendered obsolete every two years.Fled has been mentioned. Non-FU3ers will not know what this means to scenery design and I wonder why MS hasn't created a similar thing. Fled means that you can browse the scenery, zoom in and out and place objects in a total what-you-see-is-what-you-get manner. Then you can pan around, readjust the position and evaluate the model under all light conditions before you even launch the sim. Fled enables anybody to create and re-create the scenery as he wishes. Hence, you may create your own version, modify someone elses or take it as it is. With MS Flight Simulator I haven't done anything but installing scenery addons made by others and I have no idea what it would take to make or modify a *.bgl. Hans Petter

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How do MSFS scenery builders place their stuff in the FS world ? Is it a case of having to know the coordinates and orientation in advance, or do they simply use a system of trial and error ? If it's the latter, then it must be a NIGHTMARE :-eekI really can't understand why Microsoft haven't created a utility like FLED. User created scenery is a HUGE part of the FS world, so it seems rather strange that this hasn't been done (unless you want to be cynical, and suggest that this would make it too easy for freeware scenery builders to create stuff, thereby harming the business of the PAYWARE guys).No comment ;-)Chris Low.

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Fled is very usefull tool for FU. I don't know how it is in FS04 but FSSC was created for FS02. The scenery can be created using real distances or real coordinates. But with photoscenery it's easy to place models. Scenery builder has to make a screen of the edited area and set it as a background in FSSC.Not as easy as fled but relativly easy.B.Adamski

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Hello, I just wanted to get a feel for FU3. I currently own FU2 and was looking into FU3 just as a diversion to FS. I've looked at x-plane as well and I'm on the fence between the 2 though FU3 is far cheaper. I haven't used FU2 in nearly 6 years I think but may re-install over the weekend and may buy FU3 tomorrow. One of the aspects of FS that has always bothered me is weather simulation and general atmosphere as far as GA is concerned. I love flying the smaller planes and avoiding weather, but in FS you can fly through thunderstorms without any fear and was noting from this thread the dynamic nature of the weather in the FU series which has prompted me to try it out again this weekend.One question I have as I own FU2, what can I gain from purchasing FU3? I know you can combine FU2 with FU3 and get new areas, but what improvements are there or is there any good websites that show the features of FU3?ThanksIan.

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In my opinion, a significant gain is that FU3 supports rudder pedals. If you're serious about flying GA aircraft in dynamic weather you know what I mean.Otherwise, you get all the upgrades and addons that have been produced for FU3 -- precious few of those would be usable in FU2.Hans Petter

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Sorry, I just noticed the list of resources at the top. I've ordered FU3 and just finished installing FU2 and took it for a slight spin, wow it does show its age graphically. Anyway, it's really more about gameplay for me at this point, and the overall ambience which is lacking a bit in FS even with all the usual add-ons.Weather is the key for me and aircraft reactions to said weather, and I've seen several posts on the FSX forum concerning the dynamic properties of FU3 weather so I'm looking forward to jumping in and enjoying a different aspect of flight simming again. Ian.

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FU2 certainly "shows its age graphically". The only thing us FU3ers of today use is the FU2 scenery -- that is, adding the FU2 San Fransisco area to FU3. FU2 models (aircraft and buildings) are way behind the FU3 stock models which again are way behind our later addon aircraft and models. Hence, even by judging FU3 out-of-the-box you'll not be able to see what it's all about today. Basically, we have two Looking Glass photo-scenery areas, the weather model and the aircraft dynamics. Beyond that you won't have to contend with much 1997 stuff since there are better visual models to download for free. Once you get hold of your copy of FU3 get one of the more recent aircraft from the Avsim library :-)Hans Petter

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Ian,When you have installed FU3, the FU2 San Francisco scenery, Ansgar Avermeyer's high detail AI planes pack, a bunch of high quality flyable planes, and some scenery addons (I recommend the SanFran 2006 pack :-)).....then you will be able to see what FU3 is all about ;-)Chris Low.

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Thank you for the replies, still waiting for the priority mail delivery, should be sometime this week. I'll check out the add-ons, and I'm looking forward to having some fun.Ian.

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Well a little late on reply , all of you Fu3 pilots have said it beautifully.As for me ,I have tried the others and shelfed them .What I like , is to fly an aircraft as real as It gets.When I choose a plane to fly I get into cockpit at parking space ,and go through all the realities of flying just using my Yoke ,mouse and pedals. The programed buttons let me do it all without pushing keys to get views . I look to left and right ,panel gauges and outside .Talk to ATC and ground control. Take off and land just as I do in a real aircraft .Not to mention The joys of working with FLED .I cannot tell you how much enjoyment and thrills I have experienced from this Sim . I have gone through storms, Spaceal dissorientation ,IFR to 100 ft ,total darkness ,getting lost ,running out of fuel ,Iceing , Radio out ,landing gear malfunction ,engine loss,flameout,and your all alone in cockpit and you make it down somehow.You feel good Job well done . Next day your flying over Beautiful mountains and lakes peaceful and serene, sunrise and sunsets ,ATC vectors for........CaptRolo

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