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Flight Simulation Related Original Content

FSElite Video: Chase Plane 0.4 Redesign Beta – First Look

Since FSFX Packages revealed Chase Plane beta 0.4, we’ve been really excited. Alongside the much anticipated replay version, it will also come packed with new updates to further enhance your use of the product. As announced, the new version will use significantly less CPU usage and be much more stable. Alongside that, it will now finally be available even offline. So even if the servers go down again, the product will still work in an offline environment. This is a huge step forward for the team and simmers.

As mentioned, there’s also the brand new replay system and the ‘Hot Corners’ system.

I’m not going to talk too much as Patrick has put together a great first look video for you to watch.

It should be available to all users of Chase Plane free of charge sometime next week – providing no big issues pop up.

Let us know in the comments what you think of the video.

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FSElite Original: QualityWings Simulations Ultimate 787 First Impressions

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After 7 years in development, the QualityWings 787 is finally here. It has certainly been a painful wait for simmers, but the Dreamliner is finally a reality. Of course, there’s been a lot of vocal people in the community about the fact it’s currently only available for a dinosaur of a sim, but that shouldn’t take away from the aircraft itself and the development time the team has put in. Trust me, I am purely a P3DV4 user, so taking a step back to FSX:SE was pretty painful. Luckily, some gifted developers have produced scenery and environmental packages that really help the sim to look pretty good. With everything ready, it was time to finally load up my most anticipated aircraft in a long time.

So, a quick caveat: this is a first impressions article based on a handful of flights. This is not a review – that I intend to do once the P3D version has been released (with the service pack in check). So why is it not a review? There are a couple of reasons.

a) It’s not in my primary sim – so I’m unable to test it in the same conditions I would other products.

b) Reviews for detailed aircraft take more than a couple of weeks to flesh out, but I felt it was important to share initial thoughts.

c) QualityWings is committed to delivering a service pack which will enhance the aircraft. It wouldn’t be fair to pass full judgment on the initial release. Even with a team of beta testers, things will be missed.

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UPDATED: P3DV4.1 Full Install NOT Required – Setting Our Expectations for Prepar3D V4.1

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UPDATE 10 OCTOBER 1300z

Matt Davies has clarified on the rumour we suggested below. We would like to apologize as it appears we made a mistake on some of the information given to us. If you have any further comments, please do get in touch. Sorry again! (Cal) Thanks to everyone who sent us the clarification and Matt for correcting us.

Matt has made it very clear that it doesn’t require a full install and confirms that you’ll have to update the individual components (client, content and scenery). He is creating a video to help make the process as easy as possible to update, which when released, we’ll share as well to support you with the process.

 

Update – We’ve clarified a few points.

Tomorrow, according to Lockheed Martin, is the day they will release the anticipated update to version 4 of the Prepar3D simulator. Version 4.1 promises to be a relatively big update as they have listened to developer feedback to improve the sim even further. Whilst the official change log hasn’t been released, Lockheed Martin did identify that changes to the way dynamic lighting is used has been looked at and will include the first steps to bringing back virtual cockpit rain effects. Of course, this update will be free of charge.

So what is this article? Well we just wanted to send a friendly reminder that whilst a new update is really exciting, we need to remember that key products may or may not work out of the box. Add-ons such as Active Sky 16, FSUIPC, and Orbx’s Libraries and ObjectFlow usually require an update before they work in the sim. We’ve been informed that FSUIPC (thanks David) has already been updated to work with the new sim and we’re in touch with some other developers to see if they’re ready. If they aren’t, they’re usually pretty speedy updating their installers, but just remember to have some patient as they work on it.

Of course, we know that 29Palms are eagerly awaiting this update as it means they can release their Skiathos scenery and FSLabs are also waiting for 4.1 to be released. Once it’s out, we imagine both products won’t be far behind.

– Removed Rumour –

Of course, we’ll give you the full low-down tomorrow at 3PM EST (10th October 2017 @ 1900z) when it’s due to be released.

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FSElite Exclusive: Your Questions Answered – QualityWings 787!

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As QualityWings has now lifted the non-disclosure agreement from the 787 beta testing team, we are now able to share a number of details about the aircraft – including a number of your questions, just in time for this morning’s preview stream of the 787 which you can watch here at 10:00 AM UK time on October 2nd.

We were able to sit down with one of the beta testers of the 787, Will Westlake, and he was kind enough to spend some time answering your questions while also giving us a tantalizing demo of the aircraft and (in our opinion) some excellent sounds.

First off, Will’s system specifications are the following, so keep this in mind during the ensuing discussion:

  • GPU: nVidia GTX 970
  • CPU: Intel i5 4570
  • RAM: 16GB DDR3
  • Simulator: FSX Steam Edition

Our first discussion centered around performance – VAS, FPS, and the like.  In our test scenario, we were on the ground in FSDreamTeam CYVR, with full Orbx coverage and ActiveSky running.  In this scenario, we started out with 3.0 GB of VAS utilization, and we achieved a consistent 30-40 FPS both in and out of the cockpit.  As a point of interest, the aircraft actually has a VAS meter built in – if you know where to look, it’s on the left side of the PFD hidden away.

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Having Micro-stutters in Prepar3D V4 After A Few Hours? We May Have Your Solution

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This past week, I’ve managed to squeeze in some long haul flying. However, I started to notice that after a few hours of flying, my sim would begin to micro-stutter until I reloaded the sim. During flight, it wasn’t so bad, but when on the ground, it would be a second-stutter every 2 or 3 seconds. As you can imagine, it was very annoying. Let me show you what I mean (thanks to Youtuber touchydafish)

In this video you can see he’s departing Hong Kong – perfectly fine. No stuttering.

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Flight Sim World | The Numbers are in

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Flight Sim World released in early access on May 18th 2017. As I did with Xplane 11 before it, I will take a peek into publicly available data to see how well the game is doing a month after its release. Now it’s only fair to remind everyone we are talking about a game in early access. So these numbers are subject to change even more dramatically than normal full released game. Some may even say it’s not fair to do this yet since the game is still in Early Access. Well my response to that is the same stance I have on reviewing Early Access games. Whats out now is all your guaranteed to get. Times change and shit happens so the future is never guaranteed. Plus I firmly believe once you start charging money for something, you are officially selling a product. You will be judged as such! And I don’t show mercy with this so let’s take a look.

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Setting our Expectations for the Upcoming Prepar3D V4

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Update: Changed the title a little to better reflect the article.

Without delving into speculation too much, we’re fairly confident official information from Lockheed Martin is just days away. We’re reported on rumours, facts, insider knowledge and even some accidental leaks over the past few months – giving as much information as we can to you from Lockheed Martin’s worst kept secret. But what should simmers expect when the announcement is made? I’m hoping to set some expectations here based on my knowledge, some fact-finding and other key pieces of information from various developers and resources around the web.

I would also like to point out, this article is based purely on the speculation of a 64-bit platform. If you don’t believe this will be the case for the next sim, I suggest you close the article now.

There, with that out of the way, let’s continue.

So 64-bit is certainly a bit of a marketing buzz-word for the flight sim community right now. X-Plane has been in the 64-bit era for some time now, and Dovetail have released their full-fledged sim, Flight Sim World, with a heavy emphasis on the fact it’s using 64-bit architecture. But what is 64-bit and why does the flight sim community care so much?

In the simplest of terms, a 64-bit application can use much more memory allocation than a 32-bit program can. In fact, 64-bit applications can in theory use 16 exabytes, which completely destroys the 4gb limit of a 32-bit piece of software. Of course, this is also limited by physical memory available. So if you have 16gb of RAM, your application won’t be able to exceed this limit. So yes, you would have “unlimited” memory space available, you’ll all always be limited by your hardware. Additionally, if a developer doesn’t optimise their software or has bugs which leads to memory leakage, then you’ll still eventually hit your “OOM” limit.

64-bit won’t fix all OOM issues, but it will certainly give a LOT more breathing space than a 32-bit program will.

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Win a Copy of Dovetail Game’s Flight Sim World

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With the release of Dovetail’s Flight Sim World, we wanted to give the community the opportunity to grab themselves a free copy. There’s lots of media attention given to this Sim as it’s the first of many new sims to be released this year. The surprise announcement gave an insight into what the ‘early access’ version of Flight Sim World would be about, but now you’ll be able to test it yourself.

To enter, it’s really simply – just make sure you’re following any of our social media outlets. So that could be Facebook, Twitter or Instgram. Why not follow our Youtube channel as well for good measure.

We have THREE copies to give away – one for each social media account (Facebook, Twitter or Instagram). We’ll then pick one follower from each to win a free copy. So the more you follow, the more likely you are to win. It’s that simple.

If you already follow us, then you don’t need to do anything other then check your emails / PMs as on May 27th 2017, we’ll be informing the winners.

So to re-cap:

  • Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. You can follow our Youtube channel, but we won’t be picking people from there (something else is coming for that)
  • The more you follow, the likelier you are to win
  • We’ll be announcing winners on May 27th 2017

Few rules:

  • We have the final say on who wins. We’ll be picking someone randomly
  • Make sure you have a Steam account as we’ll be sending gifts
  • It will be 1 copy per person. If you happen to win twice, we’ll redraw to ensure as many people as possible can win
  • Fake / spam accounts will be discounted from the selection

Good luck!

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FSElite Exclusive: Navigraph En-Route Charts Android (Beta)

Navigraph Moving Maps Android Beta (12)

The team over at Navigraph have been working hard on providing their next update to their incredible charts system for desktop, iOS and Android. They’ve provided plenty of details so far and have advanced to their next stage of inviting people to join their beta team.

I was lucky enough to be selected to join the beta team to test out the Android version and I can tell you that this is already a vast improvement from their current app. It’s clearly been built from the ground up supporting the same look and feel as the rest of their product line. It’s already slick, fast and enables you to view your aircraft flying along routes in real time.

I’ve taken some screenshots below and added some annotations explaining what each is doing.

PLEASE REMEMBER, THESE ARE STILL WIP SHOTS.

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The new X Plane numbers are in…

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So X Plane 11 came out on the 30th of March to mostly positive reviews. Good for it, It deserves it. But in this hobby you can never talk about X Plane without comparing it to FSX. Throughout its history X Plane has always been the footnote of Flight Simulation. It was always kind of there with its small following of users. However with X Plane 11 it was clear the Laminar Research wanted to change that. And for seemingly the first time ever they put some actual effort into game design and marketing. But the question remains; How well did they do? Now that some time has passed since release we can look at the numbers generated by X Plane 11 and compare them to those of FSX and X Plane 10.

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