Category Archives: 3D Graphics

Fanboy Friday: Tricks With Light

Did you ever come across a screenshot from flight simulator that made you just stop and gape? One that, at first glance, looked like a photograph instead of a computer-based sim? I had one of those moments this week, and it got me thinking about what makes some simulated objects appear more or less “real” than others. Hint: it’s all in the lighting. Continue reading

Orbx Unveils Pacific Northwest Video

Cody Bergland of Jaggyroad Films just released his latest opus, a preview of Orbx’s upcoming FTX NA Blue: Pacific Northwest scenery. Not only do you get stunning views of this gorgeous part of the world (though I may be biased), but also a couple of peeks at the first two payware airports designed to fit within it – 1S2 Darrington Municipal, and 7S3 Stark’s Twin Oaks (okay, I’m definitely biased). Watch it below, sure, but this is one that’s worth downloading the high res version.

Introducing Stark’s Twin Oaks Airpark

This one has been a long time in the making, but the preview pics are finally available. My first project for Orbx is nearing completion: 7S3: Stark’s Twin Oaks Airpark. It’s designed to fit seamlessly into the upcoming FTX NA Blue Pacific Northwest scenery, but it’ll stand alone as well.

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If ever there was a small airport that captured the spirit of GA flying in America, this is it. From the official blurb:

Nestled in the rolling farmland of the fertile Willamette Valley near Portland, Oregon, Stark’s Twin Oaks Airpark is ideally located for sightseeing in the Pacific Northwest. The rural location makes for less traffic and a relaxed atmosphere, while providing an easy jumping-off point for flights to either the coast to the west, or the rugged peaks of the Cascade range to the east.

The scenery includes a large area of 30cm/pixel aerial photoreal terrain, featuring the various orchards, Alpaca ranches, and small farms in the area. One special point of interest is the massive Glacier rock quarry, located a few miles to the southeast of the field. It deftly shows the sim possibilities when high-resolution terrain mesh is matched with detailed and meticulously color-corrected aerial photography. The high-quality mesh also makes another appearance, in what is quite possibly a first for an FS airport: multiple elevations. Twin Oaks is carved from the side of a gentle slope, and as a result, the Starks’ house, garage, and two of the hangars are on a hill overlooking the rest of the field. Lead developer Bill Womack has obsessively researched and photographed the airport over the last few years, with the enthusiastic support of owners Bob and Betty Stark. We’re proud to offer the definitive sim rendition of one of Oregon’s aviation jewels.

Check out the preview pics here. And while you’re at it, have a look at the other releases planned for both North America and Australia.

Emma Field Inspiration

I’ve been so wrapped up in finishing Tongass Fjords lately that I haven’t taken the time to post on Emma Field’s progress. Here’s a little taste of what’s going on… Continue reading

Simming La Vida Loca — Read it!

I just visited Jarn’s eyeball-grabbing FS website after too long an absence. Embarrassing, actually, since he’s in my blogroll. If you’re not familiar with his work, drop everything and go there now. No kidding.

simminglavidaloca

Grab Your Duke!

I should have known that those beautiful screenshots meant the RealAir Duke was poised to roll out of the hangar. Just announced: the Duke is ready for sale! Head on over to RealAir and get yours.

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RealAir’s Duke is Looking Good!

I found a link on Sim-Outhouse the other day to some preview screenshots of RealAir’s upcoming Beechcraft Duke project. It’s from RealAir, so you know it’ll be one high-quality piece of work. The preview shots are absolutely stunning!

Here’s something else I find fascinating about them: somehow, through a wide variety of craft (Scout to Spitfire, and now to a Beech twin), their modeler Sean Moloney has managed to create a very distinct visual style that’s instantly identifiable as his. And this while also faithfully reproducing the real-world aircraft. He’s a rare talent, for sure. And we all know about the chops of the legendary Rob Young, their flight dynamics guru. Between the two of them, they’re a formidable team.

realair_duke

This should be a fun release.

Tongass Fjords for FSX – Progress

Sometimes when I’m deep in a scenery project, I forget to say hi now and then to my blog readers. Very sorry for that, but at least I have a decent excuse… Tongass Fjords for FSX is nearing completion. Originally, I thought all I would do would be to update a few models to FSX standards and hit “export”, then toss it over the wall to our virtual bush-flying fans. Then Holger Sandmann found some great aerial shots of Sitka, Alaska and I ended up going much deeper into re-working the town than I expected.

Now the same has happened with Petersburg. I got some more shots from a few guys who frequent the Sim-Outhouse forums, and that helped me get a better idea of what the harborfront is like there, so I dove into adding some more models. I’ve attached a few shots to show how things stand now. Soon, my friends! Very soon…

Eaglesoft Twin Commanche Takes Off!

It’s all over the news sites, but I want to make sure everyone gets the news… the Eaglesoft Piper Twin Commanche is available for purchase. I’ve watched this plane being developed, and I can honestly say you won’t find a nicer twin anywhere. My buddy Owen Hewitt was the principal modeler, and his expert touch definitely shows in this wonderful little bird. The initial release is for FS9, which ought to please anyone who hasn’t made the switch to FSX yet. They’ll be following up with an FSX-specific version later. Check the Eaglesoft website for more details.

If you’re fence-sitting (or just like great screenshots), check out Nick Churchill’s galleries of Twin Commanche pics on his site.

Eaglesoft Twin Commanche

Delicious TrainSim 2 Screenshots!

My buddy Owen Hewitt has posted a handful of mouth-watering in-game screenshots from the upcoming Microsoft Train Simulator 2 on his blog. If you’re a fan of ultra high-resolution graphics, you owe it to yourself to check these out.