Proejct AI was the first group to make packages to try and replicate real airlines and their schedules.
World of AI is a newer group, most of the founding members have worked with PAI at some point.
Unlike PAI (and the payware), WoA does not create AI models, does not create AI repaints, does not create AI flightplans.
WoA gathers those items from the best independent developers on the web, obtains permissions from each author to use their work and creates packages to make the installation easy and painless.
The very best AI is always "hand made" - by collecting models, repaints and flight plans and manually adding them to your system.
Second level, but very close, is WoA packages, with Project AI packages added for those missing airlines available.
Third would be a commercial package and right now My Traffic is the one being developed the most, though Ultimate Traffic has the lock on the most realistic schedules.
No commercial package is 'maintenance free'. To get good AI which represents the airlines and airports those airlines use takes a bit of work with the package.
My Traffic does not use real world schedules for most flights and does not always match airlines and airports for real world practice. Out of the box, My Traffic will put Southwest Airlines at DFW and US Airways and United at DAL. That's the tweaking part.
Ultimate Traffic has the very best schedules available anywhere - but updates are only once or twice a year. Ultimate Traffic for FSX has some problems with missing model setups and some schedule issues. Ultimate Traffic does not have new models, though they do have some nice new repaints. UT also needs a lot of repaints added to be at it's best.
Just Flight's Traffic is somewhere between UT and My Traffic for FSX.
The freeware alternatives - WoA and PAI - only cover about 250 airlines, of the approximate 1,000-1,200 world wide.
They have almost all the majors covered, but fall a bit short on the regional affiliated carriers. That area of the flying world is so volatile and changing that it's hard to create a good package, much less stay current.
All of the commercial packages - My Traffic, Ultimate Traffic, Traffic by Just Flight - suffer from the generic repaint issue.
There are simply a lot of aircraft which have not been painted, and frequently some model substitutions are necessary to get AI working. Some packages ignore schedules if a unique repaint is not available, some substitute generic repaints.
Those options are customizable in each program, but it will still take some work to get airports fine tuned to match the real world.
No matter which you use, you will want to add some custom AI manually at some point.
1) Start with World of AI and if a desired airline is missing Project AI. (Make very sure you only install Project AI with the option to have a separate traffic file for each airline.
They are free - they can give you a good look at how AI works and how it will impact your system. There are always performance costs with AI. The more aircraft your system displays, the more horsepower it takes to keep the FPS acceptable.
There are also issues with AI and approaches, ground behavior, parking, etc. You can test these with the free packages and see if the limits of FS in those areas are acceptable.
2) If you find that the free packages will not meet your needs - research the commercial packages.
I would most strongly urge you to go to the support websites of the three packages and ask very specific questions about each product. What is most important to you - airline ABC, airport XYZA.
You may need details and screen shots much more detailed than the answers you will get on a general forum like this one to meet your expectations.
What do I have? I own all three commercial packages and have each available as standalone AI for testing, along with standalone WoA and PAI setups.
For my personal flying, I use Ultimate Traffic as my base, but not for airlines available from World of AI and Project AI. I have several customized airline setups which I have created with downloading models, repaints and flight plans.
Last edited by ReggieF5421; 03-10-2008 at 12:16 PM.
@ PawPaw's house - near KADS, Addison, Texas, USA