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About Holdit

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    Flight simming, Napoleonic wargaming, photography, chess.

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  1. It's because you're closer to the sun at high altitudes. Remember Icarus...
  2. The thing is, it's the people who do that that actually make themselves look foolish. They just don't have the maturity to see it. Full disclosure: I run P3D, XP11 and MSFS.
  3. Just like P3D users were calling for the death of FSX. New sims seem to bring out almost religious levels of fervour and intolerance. I can't help wondering how happy someone can really be with what they have if they spend a lot of their energy slagging off or calling for an end to the alternatives.
  4. You could say that about the vast majority of videos on YouTube.
  5. It's a 33% increase on the number of flight sims had before. Rome wasn't built in a day, you know, heh, heh...
  6. Actually, I'm not planning on choosing between them. As I said, "...now I have three flight sims". Perhaps I should have added that I'm flying all three...MSFS for nice VFR flights, even with graphics options dialled back, P3D for those aircraft that I wouldn't want to say goodbye to, and XP11 for where reasonably accurate scenery will suffice. Maybe I didn't give the default P3D scenery enough of a chance because I installed my Orbx Scenery straight away, but if it was anything like the FSX default then dreadful is the only world. Very early on I did think that X-Plane would be enough on it's own, as I'd already uninstalled P3D and FSX:SE, thinking I was done with simming, but having installed MSFS and XP11, I reinstalled P3D and I'm quite happy with the mix. As MSFS matures and with XP12 reportedly being worked on, who knows what the future will bring.
  7. It was FSX and then P3D all the way for me until 18-24 months ago when I got tired of it and drifted away from flight simming. Then I bought MSFS 2020 and was impressed but my excitement was tempered its still-raw state and the limitations of my current system (i5-6600k/GTX 1060). So I thought about XP11 and downloaded the demo, played around with it was was impressed enough to pay for the full offering. I'm glad I did - partly because it's reignited my flight simming mojo and also because it's impressive in its own right. Straight away I saw a few things I liked...out-of-the-box scenery that's way ahead of P3D...3D objects everywhere...gorgeous night lighting (and properly dark nights). I've always thought the night flights even in a sim should make you a bit nervous, and FSX P3D always seemed like a darker version of daytime, a bit like those old movies that were shot in broad daylight and then darkened with a filter to look like night. XP11 gets this right - and MSFS seems to be much improved that way too. But the biggest in-your-face difference is in performance - with the graphics set fairly high I'm getting 60 FPS out in the sticks and 32-38 FPS over cities like London. Now I realise that you can get that same with P3D out-of-the-box graphics, but the default 3D terrain is vastly more accurate and looks so much better that I'm not sure if it needs adding-to. The clincher, though, was yesterday evening. I hadn't flown a taildragger yet in XP11 so I took the Stinson out for a spin. I was aware that flight modelling is considered an XP killer feature but I hadn't actually given it much thought until I looked at the external view of the Stinson and thought "I wonder if..." and advanced the throttle while holding the stick forward and engaging the brakes. Sure enough, up came the tail with the aircraft standing still. In previous experience, this can only be done with A2A Simulations taildraggers, especially the J-3 Cub. That clincher was followed by another while taxiing. the aircraft appeared to go into a skid on the ground and I realised I had just ground-looped it, something I' had never done in FSX or P3D. So now I have three flight sims ๐Ÿ™„, each with its own unique charm and selling points, but it's XP that has really relit the fire. I should have taken the plunge ages ago...
  8. After over a year away from flight simming, I got a rush of blood to the head and pulled the trigger on MSFS. It's not perfect by any means, and I think removing the existing views system was a major backwards step, but otherwise it's very impressive, and even the default aircraft exceeded my expectations. And I can get icing, updrafts, turbulence without needing any add-ons. I sank a lot (far too much) money into FSX and P3D but that's the past. I've resolved in the future to be more picky about about what I buy and why I'm buying it. What helps a great deal is the MSFS scenery being good enough out of the box. On my humble I5-6600k with GTX 1060 I can get +/- 30 FPS over Manhattan (if I go for low setting optimised by nVidia), and 50-60 FPS in the countryside. Sure the textures aren't as good but (a) you still get all the buildings (when close enough) and (b) the streets and buildings layout actually makes sense - no more office blocks built across main roads, etc. On a recent flight I flew over my own town, I not only found my house but lots of other recognisable landmarks - not by looking for them; I just happened to spot them while flying around. Even with incorrect textures the combination of a building's footprint and its juxtaposition with the road network makes it quickly recognisable. Yes there are rough edges and lots of work still to do, but to return to P3D would seem too much of a step backwards. I'm happy to do a "Year Zero" on my flying and stick to some back-to-basics work in a 152/172 while the developers sort out the fancier stuff, do some more optimising, and while I put together a budget for more capable hardware. There's no rush, since Asobo have really put the "V" back into VFR. Other positives: It may be just me but the sky seems "bigger" in MSFS. Night lighting of towns and cities looks much better. Other aircraft are much easier to spot, even without a label. Aircraft lights look like real-life aircraft lights. In FSX/P3D they were often as dim as a dying star at the edge of the observable universe. In MSFS they are bright and prominent enough to catch the eye they way they would in reality. On another of my "stress-test flights" in cloudy weather I saw the lights of aircraft queuing up on final approach to SEA-TAC - very impressive. The flight model seems to have dispensed with the "flying on rails" feeling I used to notice in FSX/P3D. Now the aircraft is rarely completely still and feels a lot more like X-Plane. I'm impressed. I'm also "lucky" in not having a lot of simming time at the moment, so the updates, improvements and fixes can be happening in the background rather than me waiting with bated breath for them. Well done Asobo, just make sure you keep it up... ๐Ÿ™‚
  9. Well one assumes you got AS for realistic weather... ๐Ÿ˜€
  10. Where can you get FS9 these days? Asking for...er...a friend...
  11. You can't beat the Italians for churches. We happened on a small-ish church in Rome called st. Andrea delle Fratte quite by chance just a couple of blocks from the Trevi. From outside the main entrance it doesn't look like much... ...but inside...wow... Beautiful paintings, side altars, carvings and two angels by Bernini. Barely an inch of undecorated surface (not counting the marble). I'm not a believer, but I do like a nice church. ๐Ÿ™‚
  12. This is why the "we'll release it when it's ready" approach, while it can be frustrating, is a better way to go. If MS really did release early because they were going for the virgin simmers market segment, I think that's a grave mistake. Buyers like that are likely to get frustrated, write the game off as a pile of poop and move on to something else, but leaving the MSFS reputation permanently tarnished. Only dedicated simmers are likely to stick around to see it become what it promises to be. IMHO, of course.
  13. The trouble with being at the cutting edge is that sometimes you're the one that gets cut. It's much more comfortable behind the curve. ๐Ÿ™‚ I don't like being an early adopter and I've never pre-ordered a game in my life. What's the point? If it's a download it's not exactly going to sell out leaving empty shelves, is it? If people don't want to suffer the the pain of bugs and missing features, they shouldn't buy early. The gaming industry shouldn't be like that, but unfortunately it is. I imagine I'll pull the trigger on it in 6 - 12 months, as I've done with all the best games I've owned.
  14. Reminds me of Tony Hancock as the artist in The Rebel... "I'll just knock out a quick still life before breakfast..."
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