• The Must-Have Files Of X-Plane Scenery

    RuScenery

    This is another collection of objects developed by the X-Plane community in Russia. You can find this library at http://www.x-plane.su/projects/ruscenery.html.

    Although the webpage is in Russian, with a little help from Google translator you can read it fine. This is a library of airports, equipment, buildings, aircraft and Soviet-ICs to help with the building of scenery based on Russian airports. More than 100 aircraft and helicopters can be found in RuScenery and many of the models are available in several versions.

    Just a small example of what can be found in RuScenery is listed here...

    Installation is very simple with RuScenery. All you need to do is download the library, unzip the file and copy the folder to your "Custom Scenery" folder in X-Plane. Restart X-Plane and any scenery package that uses the objects in that library will find it.

    FF Library

    FF Library is another library package of objects with "German looking" buildings which were used in the Numberg VFR scenery by Franknfly on X-Plane.org. It started out as just being a resource for developing his own scenery but it's now being used for other scenery as well. In the documentation he mentions that he will also include all the objects in the OpenSceneryX library as well so you may find you don't need this library installed if you have OpenSceneryX. However, Franknfly has invited others to donate to the library so hopefully those objects end up in the OpensceneryX library also.

    The FF Library is well worth looking at if you decide to develop considering it has highly customized objects created in Blender and converted using Marginal's conversion scripts. Franknfly also gives credit to AlpilotX for use of the tree textures from the Corine package. Alpilotx happens to be Andras Fabian who is the guy responsible for the creation of the global scenery elevation, terrain mesh and land-class elements for X-Plane 10.

    It can be downloaded here. You'll find all the documentation on it in a readme.pdf in the file. You can also view the "Facade Index" created by Daniel L here.

    As far as installation, it doesn't get any easier than this...

    Download the file, unzip it, copy the "ff_library" folder to the "Custom Scenery" folder in your X-Plane install. Restart X-Plane.

    R2 Objects Library

    Russian and German X-Plane enthusiasts aren't the only countries creating their own set object libraries for X-Plane. The Czech Republic is doing their own so they can use it in developing airports and Czech landscapes. You can find the file at http://xplane.cz/en/r2-library/ but you'll have to type in the password to download the file. This has confused many people but if you read what is said carefully you'll realize all that you only need to type "OK" for the password and be sure you read and abide by their license. This is the agreement with the license policy they have set forth for using this library. The documentation to this file is also in the download file but be sure you have a copy of 7-Zip because the file is compressed as a 7z file.

    Loading Add-on Scenery

    Now that you know a little bit about the scenery structure of X-Plane, you will realize that before you start downloading and installing just any scenery, be sure you know what libraries it requires. Chances are very good it will be one of the ones listed above. Without the proper library you will be plagued with error messages.

    So you know how to load add-on libraries; great stuff! Now, what about loading that new freeware scenery package now that you have all the libraries all installed? I'll bet you already know the drill...

    Download the scenery file, unzip the file, and copy it to your "Custom Scenery" folder in your X-Plane installation directory. Restart X-Plane. It's that simple.

    Summary

    Some of these libraries have been growing with rich detailed content. Some scenery files only use OpenSceneryX while others use all of them. Laminar Research has done a great job in building an architecture that allows you to share objects and is very scalable. It has lowered the bar for entering the world of scenery design and removed the need to deal with the creation of 3D object and learning complex CAD programs to get started. It becomes much easier with an editor and a few libraries to pick-n-place objects and build up the detailed scenery to an area of your choice.

    In fact some developers like to make use of so many different object libraries ( using objects from each one) that they sometimes get the reputation in the forums of being a "Lego Bricks Guy." The library objects are considered to be non-customized objects by the guys who create their own. But like Lego bricks they can build up their creation from a set of already defined blocks (objects). Using pre-canned objects doesn't mean creating scenery is a simple task because it's not; it takes time and effort. By using these pre-canned objects though; the task of creating scenery is made a whole lot easier and really aids any aspiring scenery designer in their quest.

    If you want to use the hundreds of free scenery downloads though, and not think something is wrong with your setup or the developers scenery, be sure you have the object libraries, mentioned above, installed on your system or you just might spend your evening Googling error messages rather than flying.


    3 Comments
    1. travelfreak's Avatar
      travelfreak -
      Thanks for all this information! It's great to have a website like this one that provides all this detail! I love flight simulators and I'm new to X-Plane (Always have used FSX). I understand that handling the files in X-PLANE is a little different from FSX. This helps a lot! Thanks again!
    1. malcolmest's Avatar
      malcolmest -
      Useful and interesting information. Thanks for taking the trouble putting together this detailed article.
    1. ATCMiker's Avatar
      ATCMiker -
      Hope someone can answers this question. A friend of mine has VFR scenery installed, he is also trying to install some custom airport scenery but the scenery does not show up. Is there a heir-achy system that should be used? where would the custom airport scenery go in relation to the VFR scenery. Or is it something to do with the .ini file that I have heard mentioned.

      Thanks for any help or advice.

      MikeR