Monday, February 28, 2011

McPhat Slips CoolSky's Next Project

Ha!  I totally called this one last year, in my entry to guess McPhat's next project on their message boards.

According to a tweet posted earlier this month, McPhat Studios is helping CoolSky do a Virtual Cockpit for a DC-9.  Sweet!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Microsoft Gives Some More Flight Teasers

Microsoft has posted some more screenshots and videos of their upcoming Flight product to their website.  Check it out here.

The graphics definitely look to be something of an improvement over FSX, particularly noticeable in the terrain.

There is one interesting comment in the latest (February) video: "Birds fly for free.  So can you."  This makes me think that Microsoft may be exploring a new revenue model with Flight.  I wonder if it will be in the vein of the classic Facebook game FarmVille, where you play for free, but pay small fees for all sorts of "upgrades" to the game?  Perhaps this will be more in the vein of a MMOG, like World of Warcraft, where you can join the "cloud" and fly around with other virtual pilots in realtime?

It will be interesting to watch what Microsoft is cooking up for the successor to FSX.

Wilco Updates Airbus Series to Airbus Evolution

In other Wilco Publishing news, they have recently revamped their website and announced a major update to their Airbus products:
Both upgrades add tons of new features to the Wilco Airbus products.  Too many to list here, but some highlights:
  • Weather Radar
  • Heads-Up Display (HUD)
  • Navigation improvements
  • Systems improvements
  • Others
Pop on over to the Wilco site for full details.

Upgrade pricing for owners of the previous Wilco Airbus products is €16.49 for each product, or €19.95 for Europeans who have to pay VAT.  This works out to about $22 for people in the U.S.

If you are purchasing the Wilco Airbus series for the first time, the price is €49.55 for Vol. 1, or €59.95 for Europeans paying VAT.  This work out to about $68 for people in the U.S.  Vol. 2 is priced at €41.28, or €49.95 for Europeans paying VAT.  This works out to about $56 for people in the U.S.

I've had fun with the Wilco Airbus planes in the past, although I know they aren't terribly realistic.  It will be interesting to see how this update improves on the realism of the Wilco Airbus.  More importantly, it will be interesting to see how some of the other developers working on an Airbus (Airsimmer, FlightSimLabs) respond to this new product.

The Wilco Airbus Evolution series is out today, so go get 'em!

Guess & Win Wilco's Next Product!

Wilco Publishing has put up another Guess & Win contest over at their website.  It originally popped up late last week, but due to heavy traffic, the site was inaccessible for a while.  Everything seems to be kosher now, so pop on over there and take a look.  All correct entries will be entered into a drawing for one of five free copies of the product.  Good luck!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

feelThere! Releases Tower! 2011

feelThere! have been busy lately as well, working on some non-aircraft add-ons for Flight Simulator.  In particular, they announced their ATC Suite a few months back.  Just this week, they released the first component of the ATC Suite: a revamped Tower! 2011 edition.

Tower! 2011 allows you to simulate working in a real ATC tower at an airport, controlling the movements of airplanes taking off, landing, and taxiing around the airport.  It can be played in single- or multi-player mode, and there will be other modules that will be included as well: TRACON and ATCC, for the different phases of flight control.  It looks like a very interesting product series.

Check it out here.

QualityWings Announces BAe 146/Avro RJ Series

Well this one was a pleasant surprise!

Hot on the heels of their recent announcement of the Boeing 787, QualityWings has made another stunning announcement as to what they have been up to: the Ultimate BAe 146/Avro RJ series!  I am really excited about this one.  System complexity is supposed to be higher than their Ultimate 757 last year.  Check out the announcement (including a list of features) and screenshots here.  There are also some great preview animations of the BAe 146 here.

I liked the QualityWings Ultimate 757, apart from some customer support difficulties that I had real problems with last time around.  Hopefully they have managed to iron some of those issues out.

Wow, between the Captain Sim 737 Captain, the PMDG 737 NGX and 777, the Aerosoft/Digital Aviation CRJ-700/900 series, and now the QualityWings BAe 146/Avro RJ series, 2011 is shaping up to be another fine year in flight simulation!

Captain Sim Gives Early Preview of Their 737 Captain

Wow, looks like I picked the wrong week to go out of town on business!  Some interesting new Flight Sim developments this week.

First, Captain Sim has released a couple of previews of their 3D external models of the 737-100 from their 737 Captain series.  Recall that this is their "Baby Boeing" series - the 737-100 and 737-200 series, with the classic cockpit. Anyway, the models look very impressive for the relatively short amount of time that they have been at work on the project.  I wouldn't be surprised to be flying around in their 737 Captain sometime before Christmas, but we shall see.

Check it out here.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Captain Sim Releases Weapon for FSX

Captain Sim has released Weapon for FSX.  This adds air combat capability to FSX, by adding several weapons systems to the built-in F/A-18 or LX-45 aircraft.  Looks like fun, and is relatively inexpensive at € 14.99, or around US $20.