First tests and thoughts with Aerofly FS 2 scenery creation

Aerofly FS 2 is one of those simulators that people seem to leave out when discussing flight simulation. Usually they claim it lacks many features that its other bigger and older cousins have, e.g. (Water, seasons, road traffic, ATC and also any in depth systems). I personally became interested in AF2 after trying it in VR and found it was the only flight sim that gave me smooth performance on high settings (Followed by native VR in P3D, and then X-Plane 11).

It was only natural for me to get my hands dirty and to start working on tools to generate sceneries for the sim……

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What is OpenStreetMap

In the following article, we will cover what OpenStreetMap is, how it is used inside X-Plane and more importantly, how to contribute.

OpenStreetMap (OSM) is a collaborative effort to create a free editable map of the world. It was started in 2004 by Steve Coast, and since then, has grown to a large scale project with over a million users all over the world and thousands of contributions everyday.

OSM data in central Berlin, showing the amount of detail available. Even individual trees have been mapped

Many people are unaware of what OSM is exactly and mistakingly believe it is simply the draggable map on openstreetmap.org. It’s important to understand that the OSM website is simply a tool used for viewing the vast amounts of data inside OSM and for viewing and creating basic changes. The actual OSM data contains much more information than is available on this map and more importantly, is available for free under the ODbl license. This means that no single company or agency (such as Google or USGS) control the data, and people are free to use the data in their applications. The following lists some of the uses/and key points of OSM, and will help you get an idea of the information available and how it is used:

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Understanding Scenery Order in X-Plane

Scenery Order in X-Plane determines which scenery is visible and how the various sceneries you have installed are layered. It’s very important to get the order correct as having incorrectly ordered scenery can cause strange problems, such as trees on a runway, or a completely blocked scenery.
Before going into ordering scenery, it’s important to understand the different types of scenery available:

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EGGP Liverpool John Lennon Airport

Liverpool John Lennon Airport is a regional airport located in the north-west of England. The airport is used by many airlines including Ryanair, Easyjet, Wizzair and Flybe with destinations all over Europe.

The airport includes the following:

Fully licensed high resolution ortho imagery for the entire airport.
Surrounding trees and buildings
Liverpool City Centre and Wirral landmark buildings.
Runcorn/Widnes bridge
Accurate ground markings and signs

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ENOV Ørsta-Volda Airport

Ørsta-Volda Airport is a regional airport located in Ørsta, Norway serving the towns of Ørsta and Volda. The airport features a 1,070-meter asphalt runway aligned to 06/24. Surrounded by stunning scenery, it is a short flight away from Ålesund and Sandane.

The airport is mainly used by Widerøe who operate several flights a day using their fleet of Dash 8s. The main route flown is to Oslo, but there are also other regional flights.

This version of ENOV and the surrounding industrial estate has been created to be as accurate as possible with highly detailed ground and object textures, night-lighting and trees. The entire airport and the surrounding industrial estate has been recreated in very high detail and should be very accurate to real-life. The ground textures have also been hand-created to match the buildings correctly.

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L52 Oceano County Airport

Oceano County Airport (FAA LID: L52) is a public airport located one mile (1.6 km) west of the central business district (CBD) of Oceano, in San Luis Obispo County, California, USA. The airport covers 58 acres (230,000 m2), has one runway and no control tower. It is mostly used for general aviation, and is walking distance to the sand dunes that line the beach at Oceano.

This is my first US small GA airport and I was inspired to create this after using the default XP11 airport on PilotEdge (L52 is featured as the tutorial flight on PilotEdge and is a great base for exploring the area). It’s also a short flight to KSBP which is a hive of activity and has a good freeware version available on X-Plane.org.

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ENHA Hamar Stafsberg

Hamar Airport, Stafsberg is a general aviation airport located at Stafsberg in Hamar, Norway, approximately 30NM north of Oslo. It features a 944-by-23-meter (3,097 by 75 ft) runway aligned 15–33.

The airport is located in an area with very stable climate and good flying conditions and is a popular GA location, regularly used for events, helicopter training and general aviation. It is also home to the Hedmark Flying club and the HAGL skydiving club.

This is a highly detailed airport with all buildings and ground textures produced to be as accurate as possible. The airfield also includes custom vegetation, people (some are animated) and lots of small details to give life to the airfield. All the main buildings on and near to the airfield have been modeled as accurately as possible. It also includes hand painted ground textures for the airport grounds at a resolution of approximately 5cm/per pixel.

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