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Advanced flight simulator X-Plane 12 set to fully release in December

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X-Plane 12, an advanced flight simulator from Laminar Research that's currently in Early Access and has full Linux support, is set to release in full in December.

The sim includes 18 unique aircraft models and detailed 3D scenery for more than 17,000 airports around the world – all with new ground textures, towers and pavement effects to enhance realism. They say it's the "most realistic and powerful flight simulator with real-world physics, accurate aircraft systems and an immersive simulation of the world" built by  pilots and engineers and for "everyone who craves a realistic flight simulation experience".

They've also put up a brand new trailer:

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Features:

  • Volumetric 3D Clouds
  • Physics-Based Photometric Lighting Model
  • 18 Aircraft – from the Piper Cub to Airbus A330
  • Worldwide 3D Water
  • Rewritten AI Air Traffic Control System
  • Global 3D Forests
  • Seasonal Textures and Weather Effects
  • Revamped Real Weather Data and Rendering

One thing they haven't made clear is the exact date in December, we're still waiting for that to be revealed.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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7 comments

peta77 16 Nov
From the preview videos they do on youtube it already looks very good...

I just wish they'd give a little more attention to ground graphics. For airliners, etc. it's very good, but for low altitude flight (ultra light planes, helicopters, VFR, etc.) it still doesn't look too good..... improved, but could be better...

Note: there's already a demo version (limited region and limited to 15min per session, just the standard X-Plane Demo style) available on their website, so you can already check it out for yourself!


Last edited by peta77 on 16 November 2022 at 4:51 pm UTC
Ehvis 16 Nov
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Quoting: peta77I just wish they'd give a little more attention to ground graphics. For airliners, etc. it's very good, but for low altitude flight (ultra light planes, helicopters, VFR, etc.) it doesn't look too good..... improved, but could be better...

That is an issue, especially with msfs now. It's a bit unfair though because you ms can leverage their maps and cloud services without explicitly paying for it. Something like that would be completely unrealistic for development of just a flight simulator. The funny thing is that FSX was always applauded for having seasonal graphics while XP did not. Seems that this has now turned around. :) Anyway, msfs is never going to be an option for me, so the comparison is irrelevant. And from the foot I have in the flight simulation community, those that rate flying above fancy satellite photo scenery still prefer XP over msfs.
peta77 16 Nov
Quoting: Ehvis
Quoting: peta77I just wish they'd give a little more attention to ground graphics. For airliners, etc. it's very good, but for low altitude flight (ultra light planes, helicopters, VFR, etc.) it doesn't look too good..... improved, but could be better...

That is an issue, especially with msfs now. It's a bit unfair though because you ms can leverage their maps and cloud services without explicitly paying for it. Something like that would be completely unrealistic for development of just a flight simulator. The funny thing is that FSX was always applauded for having seasonal graphics while XP did not. Seems that this has now turned around. :) Anyway, msfs is never going to be an option for me, so the comparison is irrelevant. And from the foot I have in the flight simulation community, those that rate flying above fancy satellite photo scenery still prefer XP over msfs.

I wouldn't pick MSFS either... It's rather the arcade mode of a flight sim.

I'm just wishing that terrain quality would be better (internet bandwidth and hdd sizes nowadays can handle the data), so you would have better / smoother coast lines, better matching ground textures to osm-streets, etc. Doesn't need to look exactly like the original in case of buildings etc., just so that it could be like that when looking at a map, without having the feeling of big data reduction... so graphically I'd wish for something like helicopter flight in arma3:
arma3-heli-screenshot
(open link in new tab... somehow doesn't work inside GOL)
or warthunder...


Last edited by peta77 on 16 November 2022 at 5:43 pm UTC
iiari 16 Nov
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[quote=Ehvis]
Quoting: peta77And from the foot I have in the flight simulation community, those that rate flying above fancy satellite photo scenery still prefer XP over msfs.
This was true at launch with its default aircraft, but currently even from a flying and simulation standpoint, MSFS has really caught up and, with some of the recent excellent 3rd party planes, really (IMHO) surpassed XP over the last 6 months. Even some of the most hard-core XP streamers have moved over to it. MSFS and flight simulation is literally the only reason I have a Windows install still left.

Even for XP devotees, while many of its early 3rd party add-ons were platform agnostic, sadly the better recent releases (weather add-ons, traffic add-ons, planes, etc) for XP have been Windows only affairs. Also, XP's engine is showing its age and has never been very good with performance. Still today, you can have bleeding edge hardware and, flying in metro areas, still rarely crack 30 FPS with the usual add-ons while MSFS in all its glory on ultimate everything settings will be at 60-120 FPS with DLSS2 or 3.

XP is still excellent and for Linux only simulation fans it's still a must....


Last edited by iiari on 16 November 2022 at 9:03 pm UTC
peta77 16 Nov
[quote=iiari]
Quoting: Ehvis
Quoting: peta77And from the foot I have in the flight simulation community, those that rate flying above fancy satellite photo scenery still prefer XP over msfs.
This was true at launch with its default aircraft, but currently even from a flying and simulation standpoint, MSFS has really caught up and, with some of the recent excellent 3rd party planes, really (IMHO) surpassed XP over the last 6 months. Even some of the most hard-core XP streamers have moved over to it. MSFS and flight simulation is literally the only reason I have a Windows install still left.

Even for XP devotees, while many of its early 3rd party add-ons were platform agnostic, sadly the better recent releases (weather add-ons, traffic add-ons, planes, etc) for XP have been Windows only affairs. Also, XP's engine is showing its age and has never been very good with performance. Still today, you can have bleeding edge hardware and, flying in metro areas, still rarely crack 30 FPS with the usual add-ons while MSFS in all its glory on ultimate everything settings will be at 60-120 FPS with DLSS2 or 3.

XP is still excellent and for Linux only simulation fans it's still a must....

So whom shall I quote... well maybe Metallica first: Sad but True
Then... Where to start... Maybe here:
Neither Xp nor MSFS is just about the base sim; the addons a lot of the the show.. and especially when it comes to hardware, there's a huge problem as vendors - currently - in the long run stick to windows... even real sim gear who started with good linux support only develop drivers for windows now... why? ... i guess: lack of customers...

now to the other, very difficult topic:
new version, that are (excessively) improved, doesn't mean they run faster on old hardware... especially regarding X-Plane, because the simulation part, not only CFD but also contact-analysis, take up a lot of computational effort.. So if you improve that, it's most likely you need more processing power..
Also additional graphical details need some resources...

So comparing MSFS and XP hardware demands is like comparing the intelligence of Einstein and Musk... They're not in the same league, so it's always nonsense....
Improving the realism of the simulation doesn't mean you get any graphical feedback (which most players long for.. me also a bit)... But you surely get higher CPU loads from more calculation need to be done...
see also Austing Meyer's, Laminar Research/X-Plane and Michael Brown's Videos on YouTube to get you a little more insight on the physics and computational demand... There's a lot happening under the hood...
SuperTux 17 Nov
It can cost extra if you go the Orbx route, but Ortho will fix up the terrain. I am not entirely sure how it will affect with the new weather (seasons) though, I have seen people say it should still work. One issue common to Ortho is being stuck in summer (most ortho's are from summer or spring).

The water effects are nice, landed and had fun with the Icon A5.

Finally, like XP11 and previous versions they will keep improving it post release, so a Xp 12.5 will be quite different from XP12 in terms of additions and enhancements (I haven't even touched on 3rd parties when they get access to the API's such as weather).

For Linux users, Xp 12 is a massive jump in terms of clods alone, as some of the better, more CPU intensive, additions were Win or Win/Mac only.
FredO 17 Nov
Quoting: SuperTuxIt can cost extra if you go the Orbx route, but Ortho will fix up the terrain. I am not entirely sure how it will affect with the new weather (seasons) though, I have seen people say it should still work. One issue common to Ortho is being stuck in summer (most ortho's are from summer or spring).

I have been using X-Plane 12 since it came out on Steam as Early Access. On Linux it has been rock solid for me, and smooth performance too, but you do need a good machine for sure. I can also confirm that the weather effects like snow work fine with Orthos. Here is a screenshot with light snow cover. The snow cover is fully dynamic too.

https://steamuserimages-a.akamaihd.net/ugc/1970916220647270681/08D74F26483FB6608B6998155BA266DB01955CA6/?imw=1920&&ima=fit&impolicy=Letterbox&imcolor=%23000000&letterbox=false

If you get Orthos that include some of the water image too, they can now run smoothly into the water to give some great shorelines:

https://steamuserimages-a.akamaihd.net/ugc/1908990810190669576/346EF2B74102226D3FE1CCC73C24B2480013122B/?imw=5000&imh=5000&ima=fit&impolicy=Letterbox&imcolor=%23000000&letterbox=false

https://steamuserimages-a.akamaihd.net/ugc/1908990470843582674/3C512B3FB73D849A13D16E92136BF3009C0F5625/?imw=5000&imh=5000&ima=fit&impolicy=Letterbox&imcolor=%23000000&letterbox=false


Last edited by FredO on 17 November 2022 at 10:58 am UTC
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