Friday, March 23, 2007

Default choices

At the risk of sounding like an FSX Cheerleader, or of being hopelessly provincial, I have to admit that I am hardly ever tempted to move beyond the default aircraft included with FSX. Part of the reason is the limited number of addons, free or otherwise at this point. (Actually, I open myself up to another accusation, one which I cannot deny, and that is being a cheapskate; I once considered calling this blog The Frugal Flightsimmer. There are some payware packages that do look pretty tempting, the Airplane Heaven Tiger Moth, for one. If I splurged on some of these packages I might spend a lot less time in the default hangar).

However, I think the main reason I fly the default so much is that they've covered most of the bases that interest me, and they've done a really good job in my opinion. If I want a basic get around plane, one that I'd most likely fly in real life when I win the lottery, I've got the good old 172. If I want something vintage and light, there's the cub. If I want a bush plane, there's the Maule and the Beaver... you get the idea. The only real gap, for my needs, in the default lineup is a good biplane. I have installed Dave Eckert's most excellent Stearman and also the Long Island Classics Christen Eagle II, so I'm all set when I'm in a bipe mood.

I do miss some of the Bill Lyons planes I flew so much in FS9. A few of them are compatible enough to work with FSX. However, and it makes me sad to say so since Bill is one of my flight sim heroes, they are starting to look their age. The clash between the high-res outside view and the less-than-high interior is noticible. Even so, I do fly the Travel Air and the Tripacer from time to time.

Let's hope there are some young freeware designers out there working on some new must-have planes. Some day I may look back nostagically at the time when I just flew defaults.

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