Friday, September 15, 2006

Where's the Airport???

Sometimes with X-Plane 850 you may reach your destination airport only to discover's not there! What's going on???

Well, in X-Plane 850 3-d scenery is created while you fly. This includes roads, trees, buildings, and most importantly airports. So...if the flight simulator cannot build 3-d scenery as fast as you fly, you may get to the airport and discover and it's missing. After a while, it will appear. The easiest way to see this is: go to replay mode, so you can easily move a huge distance just by dragging the replay slider. This will "thrash" the 3-d scenery build-up and a bunch of airports will be missing.

There is one exception to the "build-as-you-fly" rule: whenever you do anything that changes the scenery situation from a dialog box, X-Plane says to itself, "well, the user is already not flying, because a dialog box is open...why don't I take the time now and create all the 3-d scenery nearby". So when you place an aircraft at an airport, change certain rendering settings, etc. then the sim builds the airport up front and it will always be there.

I do not yet have a fix to the problem of missing airports. For now I recommend that you consider turning down your 3-d scenery; often a lot of roads or objects can cause the sim to get behind in its 3-d work. I am working on making the code more efficient.

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