Friday, May 3, 2013

AirDailyX "FirstLook" Σκιάθος!

FSX/P3D. To say we are super impressed would almost be an insult to Lars and 29Palms. Once again, AirDailyX brings you another product "FirstLook". Normally we try to be the first to purchase projects in an effort to give you a more in-depth look at products before you spend your money. This time however, we not only have a FirstLook, it's also an early look! So with this said, both Mark and myself have been spending several hours on Skype enjoying the scenery and our words just simply can't describe how we both feel about this exciting destination! You WILL be impressed! So come with us for our ADX FirstLook at 29Palms Skiathos! And yes, RELEASE DATE ENCLOSED!!

Just a reminder, the product is still in beta stage but if all goes well, the expected release date is slated for Wednesday the 8th of May. Now as I mentioned earlier, both Mark and myself will present you our feel of the scenery. But the official ADX review (impression) will come shortly after release. So for today, we will start with Mark and his shots of the airport and surrounding areas in FSX, and I will follow with the rest of the island in P3D. It's a great scenery! So let's start with Mark.

Skiathos Airport ‘Alexandros Papadiamantis’
Mark / FSX
I've focused my efforts primarily on the airport and to be straight to the point…it's good, damn good! This airport legitimately feels real... Everything appears to have been covered and covered really well. This product could be a game changer.
Now as always, perhaps the most important aspect of any scenery release is performance...and Skiathos is excellent. I had no problems maintaining 30FPS with a combination of complex aircraft, overcast sky, maximum scenery density settings, and all customizable scenery options enabled. I have left the frame rate counter displayed in two captures to reinforce this point. No stutters, in fact, on my rig at least, I couldn’t even force a stutter despite several admirable attempts.
Ground polygon quality is excellent and crisp, volumetric grass appears nice and dense, and even taxiway lights look particularly good. There is a true to life trench dividing the apron and runway areas which really adds to the immersion factor when taxiing out. Even landside, the ground detail is surprisingly well done.

The airport terminal is spectacular, plain and simple. Texturing is sharp and I honestly feel as if I have actually stood in front of the real terminal building. The terminal exudes a beautiful yet worn feel, just as it should. Again, landside quality is very good as well. Airport objects, support vehicles, equipment, and the included static business jet all enjoy the same high level of texture quality.

Approach to the airport is truly beautiful with water on both ends of the runway. Landing from both directions offers the pilot a nice view of boat and marine activity. One approach flies directly over the spotters beach with photographers and all – St. Maarten style. The airport blends wonderfully into the surrounding area and I just can’t reinforce how enjoyable it is to land at Skiathos.

Lastly, a quick look at night lighting. This is an area I see many developers struggle, but I must say, Skiathos is one of the best. Night lighting is almost perfect. The entire airport looks wonderful at night, not too bright, just right.
So I may seem like a fan boy but that’s because I am, this place is awesome! The only thing that detracts is the nearby ugly default islands. This product may be a game changer - it is as good if not better than the best out there, just saying… Note: Keep in mind these shots were taken from a beta release.


Now for a closer look at the island by D’Andre.

The Island of Skiathos
D'Andre / P3D
reiterate: to say we are super impressed would almost be an insult to Lars and 29Palms. I say this because to simply be impressed is too big of an understatement. The texture depth is so real it looks... well... REAL. In fact, I dare say it's the most realistic scenery I think I have seen so far. Now yes, Elstree from Orbx is also a heck of a realistic looking scenery. But what sets this place apart is the terrain. Not only is it very crisp and real, but it's also extremely easy on frames. I clocked an average of 40FPS with the Carenado KingAir C90B and Majestic Q-400. With lighter aircraft I saw frames reach the 60's using the HD textures. Now as I am a native of California (a mostly desert place) I can personally relate to the scenery. Minus the type of buildings found on the island, Skiathos is not much different to the terrain found just 30 minutes outside of LA. So in that regard, I can really relate and say, this is the best terrain I have seen so far and in my opinion, it's the best part of the scenery given the fact that it's the biggest.

So, am I 100% happy? Well... NO! I'm VERY UPSET! I'm sorry Lars. You are a great guy. You are highly talented. But you have upset me. Why might you ask? Because the scenery looks so good, that the nearest   nearby terrain you can see in the distance: Skopelos and Ag. Georgios look like crap. So much so, that I tried to avoid getting the areas in my screenshots of Skiathos. Those areas just look that bad... So my only hope is that Lars will cover the whole of Greece or FTX will have to. So far that's the only bad thing I have to say. But hey, this is a FirstLook, so please allow me to shut up and let you look! And if I can say how much I am enjoying the scenery, I am REALLY enjoying the scenery!!! And AH-HA, you can't have it yet! Enjoy! I made LOTS of shots for you so now you can finally see the BIG picture.

Pictures speak for themselves right? 
On behalf of Mark and myself, thanks for reading and stay tuned for "Our impression!" soon after release!
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Anonymous said...

1) Thanks for a very detailed and impressive article and screenshots.

2) what are the performance like ?

3) any chance that the developer will release a video showing the lucidity of the FPS while flying a NON-DEFAULT plane ?

4) thanks again.


DAndre Newman said...

Well for my performance, you can see my system specs on the left panel. I got between 30-40 with the majestic Q-400 which is the heaviest aircraft I have in P3D. Some of my Carenado's get up to 50 and ultralights get up to the 70's...

All I can say is you don't need to be worried about performance. Plus you don't have to HD textures. There is an option to turn them off.

Unknown said...

As mentioned in my portion of the article, I experienced a solid 30FPS (locked) in the Majestic Dash-8 with overcast clouds and maximum scenery density settings.

George LGAV said...

Not that I had a doubt about purchasing the scenery, but I'd like to thank you guys for your nice preview.

The funny thing is that in reality the other islands (Alonissos ans Skopelos) have better natural environment than Skiathos as they're less developed and more virgin! I must therefore agree that 29Palms must continue with them and with rest of the country afterwards...

PS Is there any chance for a Dash review pls? Am used to NGX quality and would like to know if it's similar. Not failures and complex things, but in terms of procedure fidelity and -of course- eye candy.

PS2 Thanks again for your contribution in our hobby and for helping us to not waste our money by wasting yours :D

Mason Dominique said...

I am not good enough to review the Majestic Dash. But i can't fly on something else since it has been released. I would say that despite a really slight lower graphic definition (really slight), the virtual cockpit, the FMC, the overhead, piedestal are really highly simulated. As a matter of fact, possibly 100 % of buttons are working here.
The only backdraw is the lack of tutorials on the approach procedure. And especially how to define the TOD. But everything works fine.
Wil try a review thiw week. Possibly.

DAndre Newman said...

I agree with Dom,

I am still learning to fly the aircraft. It would be immature to write a review on anything besides visuals at this point. But we are open to having someone who knows the aircraft well write cover the systems portion of the review. Otherwise, I am also waiting on some useful tutorials.

Anonymous said...

I am going to buy ths one, as I have already other island. Do they never thought about Samos it's a nice Approach

Anonymous said...

So... Southampton Intl next? :D

George LGAV said...

This answers pretty much my q!

Will buy as soon as I get back home, as we're currently having the Orthodox Easter break. Looking every day at planes approaching LGTS (Thessaloniki) and look forward to the scenery announced by Aerosoft!!!!

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