A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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TimC340
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

Post by TimC340 »

It's of course possible that the clever guys over at AIG will be able to reverse-engineer the existing AI engine to the point where some custom AI will be possible. But they're not there yet, and there are already (as mentioned in this thread) some obstacles that appear at present to be insurmountable without Asobo attention.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

Post by Tuskin38 »

I'm happy with where the sim is. There's some issues, but nothing that's turning me away from it, yet.

What things do you need AI wise specifically? Because the current AI I'm pretty sure has all the features the FSX AI has since MSFS was built on top of FSX.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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The biggest issue currently is that at about 50 AI aircraft active, the sim will crash. Secondly, installing multiple liveries of AI aircraft is not a trivial exercise; indeed, I've not seen it achieved yet. Flight plans are similar to FSX, and it's possible to import converted FSX aircaft into MSFS, but it needs far more than that to be a workable ecosystem. And this group is specifically about military AI, not military flight simming.

Edit: to put it in perspective, Eglin, the P3Dv4 default airfield, with MAIW Matrix installed, runs a full complement of over 100 aircraft. In the local area, and generating traffic of their own, are around 10 major military bases, plus a number of civilian airfields for which a user may well be employing traffic from UT LIve or Traffic Global. It wouldn't be unreasonable, using P3D's tower radar view, to see 250+ aircraft active within 50 miles if you have a powerful computer. MSFS cannot contemplate generating 250 AI aircraft, and at the moment it's limited to the generic-liveried and very poorly-modelled civilian default AI. For our purposes, it's - not to put too fine a point on it - crap. It's very pretty though.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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I haven't had any crashing when using 50 or more AI, I had 140 running at one point actually.

That might have been a bug that was fixed.

The addon I mentioned last page had multiple liveries. But I'm not exactly sure what you mean.

Edit:

I wonder if it depends on the quality of the model, or the model variety. If i have 50+ of the generic airliner models, I don't get a crash. But 50+ of the non-generic models, there is a crash.

So my bad, there is still a crash. But I wonder what the exact cause is.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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Good to know that you've given it a go, Tuskin. You don't have to go back too far in this thread to see more info about MSFS behaviour with lots of AI plans active.

As you'll discover as you look through this site, it's not unusual for one aircraft to have hundreds of different subtypes and liveries. Just take John Young's Eurofighter Typhoon as an example. At the moment, there's no obvious way to get them into MSFS, let alone use them successfully. Multiply that by the number of aircraft types available here, and which users expect to be able to install on their systems easily and have working instantly, and the problem becomes huge.

The MAIW Matrix app, which installs much of the current world military fleet (and a good many airfields) into your P3Dv4 for pretty much instant use is simply not possible in MSFS at the moment. AIG, which is a much larger organisation concentrating on the civilian AI world, also has thousands of high-quality aircraft available for FSX/P3D to populate the aviation world - in fact, almost every commercial aircraft in the sky today (well, in 2019!) is represented in their output. What they, and we, are looking for is to be able to place those aircraft in MSFS so that we have a realistic representation of a living aviation world, preferably with the choice of exactly which era we want to represent. We are a long, long way from that, and the 25/11 MSFS update doesn't suggest that we're going to get any closer for quite a while - the biggest issue for us being access to the parts of the SDK that define the AI world.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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It seems that I might have been overly optimistic when I suggested it might be 12 months.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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Yeah, I'm afraid so, Steve. I have to say I was extremely disappointed when I saw that list.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

Post by Firebird »

It is frustrating but understandable.
It appear that there are people out there that prefer actually flying in game rather than watching things fly. I know it doesn't sound possible but apparently it seems to be true.

I am really keen to get this sim but there is currently no aircraft that I want to fly available and no usable AI engine. So I will have to keep wanting. So the question is do I want to spend money on a stop gap system like P3D for 12-24 months?
I am not devaluing P3D nor its fans but currently I do think that MSFS will win the greater market share/user base.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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I agree with you. I have been on the P3D bus for quite a while, and have (or rather - did have*) parallel v4 and v5 installations, as well as MSFS2020 (or FS20 as I prefer).

FS20 is undoubtedly very nice to look at. The recent improvements to Japan and the US (UK is next for a spruce-up in January) have been outstanding, and there's no doubt that, as a visual spectacle, it has P3D beaten hands down. P3D4.5 with a full Orbx installation, especially in those areas covered by the True Earth products, is very, very good, but there is no doubt that, at its best, FS20 looks photographically real. The lighting, in particular, is amazing (and is P3Dv5's biggest failing!). But as a flight sim experience, FS20 is far behind what is available in P3D (or even FSX) as yet. And, of course, for the virtual spotter, it's a waste of space.

It's not all good in P3D. V5.1 (HF1) is still visually a bit of a mess. They've sorted the CTDs I and many others were getting on a full-AMD setup, but the random running out of VRAM is still a thing, even on RTX 3000-series cards, and they don't seem to be any nearer getting that fixed. LM have instigated their own cloud and shader engine 'True Sky' which, to be honest, has been a disaster. The changes they made from v4.5 to v5.0 in lighting and materials has led to some very strange visual effects; combined with the True Sky issues, this has led to some amazingly weird screenshots making their way to the web! v45, on the other hand, does seem to be the sweetspot for P3D. It's very recognisably derived from FS9/FSX, but it can look gorgeous - and almost all of MAIW's output now works with it (or can be relatively easily converted).

I see no compelling reason for moving on from v4.5 just now, though I think that 5.x will come good fairly soon. For our purposes, FS20 is still a long way from being a suitable vehicle for MAIW's efforts.

*as I know you've recently experienced, my boot drive had a melt down the other day, so I've had to reinstall Windows which of course has reset the registry. Although all my sim stuff is on other drives, getting it reconnected to Windows is not straightforward! Add to that I'm in the fourth week of sinusitis and really just want to be in bed, it's been a crappy lockdown.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

Post by Tuskin38 »

Side note there, TrueSky is a third party cloud engine, it's not LM's.

https://simul.co/

But implementing it is all on LM's end yeah.

Has anyone experimented with bringing any of the MAIW scenery to MSFS? Even without the planes it would be nice to have the bases to fly out of in the meantime.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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Tuskin38 wrote: 30 Nov 2020, 18:00 Has anyone experimented with bringing any of the MAIW scenery to MSFS? Even without the planes it would be nice to have the bases to fly out of in the meantime.
rocket_26_ wrote: 13 Sep 2020, 13:25 I have been busy the last couple of weeks finishing the P3D Coningsby for Johns Typhoon but also converting the scenery to Fs2020.

Here is a screen of how it is so far. The most time consuming part for me is that I am slowly adding PBR textures to the models to take advantage of the rendering engine.

Image

This was posted a few months ago. I don't think it's been made publicly available.

Edit: I see you've been discussing AIFP for FS20 with Don over at FSDev, and you showed a screenshot of part of the default traffic file. It showed that it uses the default models in their generic liveries, with only the registrations differentiating aircraft. To that end, it's very similar to the default traffic files in FSX: it loads only a few actual aircraft models and paints (one per model in FS20), then uses many iterations of those aircraft to create a basic traffic picture. The registrations are generated 'on the fly', and aren't part of the livery or model. In contrast, the big traffic addons like Matrix, AIG, UT Live and Traffic Global inject hundreds - maybe thousands - of models, with many liveries per model, and the registrations hardwired to each livery, in order to present a realistic picture. The two approaches are very different, and create a very different load on the sim. Never mind P3D, FS9 can happily cope with it but FS20 can't. It's unlikely that it will be able to for some time.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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TimC340 wrote: 30 Nov 2020, 01:26 Asobo have released a development timeline, showing roughly when they expect to introduce new features or address identified problems. AI is pretty much at the bottom of the list, with no defined year (years are all they give!) for attention. The list covers up to 2023 so far, so we can safely say that AI will essentially not be addressable by MAIW until after 2022.
It is not a timeline. Anyone who's involved in modern software development will tell you that you're looking at this in a far too linear way. What you describe is what we call "waterfall"; you only start the next thing when the previous thing is done. But Asobo, like most software devs these days, work "agile".

The team that's working on flight dynamics is not the same team that is working on airports and is not the same team that is working on AI traffic. They all work in parallel on their own issues. AI traffic has been in "not started" state since the very first feedback snapshot months ago. You can also see that the issue is on the "backlog", this means that it hasn't been assigned to a team yet and there is no estimation yet on when they will work on it and how much effort is required. It is very well possible that once this issue is moved to an upcoming sprint, they only need a couple of months to implement it. You can't tell at this time.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

Post by Firebird »

I would agree with you, Greg.
It is all very fluid and conceivably they could employ more people to set up other teams once COVID has been bombed into submission, although I doubt this personally. I can't see them justifying the cost when they don't need to.
It is possible that the various developments can be speed up once people can work together again but again you have to counter this with natural slippage as various areas hit problems.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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Greg, I get what you're saying. Yes, it's not a roadmap, but it does indicate the priorities that Asobo has allocated to its job list, and the dates that they expect those jobs to be completed. While it's possible that they could tackle AI sooner than other jobs, I can't see any evidence that that will be the case. It looks more to me that a rough range of dates will be suggested for AI when they've completed more of the jobs at the top of the list, and that their ability to allocate labour is fully committed on other tasks until roughly the end of 2022.

I'd love to believe that there's another interpretation of what they've said, but I'm afraid I can't see it! Of course, and as I mentioned upthread, it's possible that someone like AIG will reverse-engineer AI for MSFS and develop a completely third-party solution. Indeed, I'd find that more likely than Asobo doing it any time soon!

Of course, we are just spectators at the moment and we'll have to wait and see what happens.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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I wonder how Asobo built their airports. Very few bases actually have Military parking assigned, most have those spaces labelled as 'GA'. I know some were built by AI, I assume most if not all military bases were handled that way, since I imagine they wouldn't be high priority.

Ones I've noticed that have Military parking are, Langley AFB, Indian Springs Aux, Hickam (which might have added with the USA update? I don't remember seeing that parking being labelled as combat before), McChord, and Fairchild.

Elmendorf has both Military parking (only Cargo) and large GA parking.

I haven't looked at every air force installation in the USA, but those are the ones I've noticed. No bases in Canada have combat parking. I haven't checked outside Canada/USA.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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Do we actually know yet what the parking slot designations are in the new sim? Are they the same as previous sims or are there new ones?
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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Firebird wrote: 01 Dec 2020, 22:10 Do we actually know yet what the parking slot designations are in the new sim? Are they the same as previous sims or are there new ones?
I imagine that info may be in the SDK. I'll have a look.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

Post by Tuskin38 »

Here:

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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

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So it looks the same, as far as aircraft are concerned, with the exception of RAMP_GA_EXTRA and GATE_EXTRA.
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Re: A brand new MS Flight Simulator is coming...

Post by rocket_26_ »

Firebird wrote: 06 Dec 2020, 08:40 So it looks the same, as far as aircraft are concerned, with the exception of RAMP_GA_EXTRA and GATE_EXTRA.
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I have both of my parking files from P3D for Coningsby and Lakenheath both showing in the sim. I just pasted the parking and taxi links from one version to the other and it works. Only thing I cant see in the properties is the parking codes.

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Cheers

Ian
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