• Review: Orbx - EU Germany North

    Review: Orbx - EU Germany North

    Written by Michael Hayward

    Orbx - EU Germany North

    Orbx is a company well known within the flight simulator community as one of the leading scenery developers for FSX, P3D and now also X-Plane. In this review, I will be taking a look at EU Germany North, an add-on released in December 2016, and will be going through all of the key aspects that this add-on has to offer you, as well as giving my overall opinion on whether or not the scenery is a worthy purchase.

    What/Where Is It?

    Orbx EU Germany North covers the entire northern half of Germany with Naumberg being as far south as this add-on goes (around longitude 51.1000° N).

    Hand-placed objects such as wind farms, tall structures and chimneys used in VFR navigation also spread into other countries such as Poland, Denmark and The Netherlands; meaning a very large area is covered by this add-on (in total 70,653 miles square miles).

    Orbx - EU Germany North     Orbx - EU Germany North     Orbx - EU Germany North

    Installation

    Ever since Orbx released their FTX Central launcher, installing their add-ons has been a relatively pain-free exercise. After purchasing the add-on, head over to FTX Central 3 and load up the launcher, find Germany North under 'Europe, Region', click on the add-on and just click install. The download and installation process is automatic and this will also be added to your scenery library for you.

    Within the launcher, you also get a 25 page PDF document which goes through the following: the main parts of the scenery package; an installation and configuration guide, as well as an airport index showing off the range of airports that this scenery covers.

    The Ground Environment

    There are two very distinct parts to this add-on: the VFR scenery and the autogen. I'll be splitting these into two sections and talk about them separately.

    Orbx - EU Germany North     Orbx - EU Germany North     Orbx - EU Germany North

    However, before I do that, I must mention first that both of these scenery elements are of a very high standard and blend well with one another. At high altitude this also looks really good with high-quality textures all around, but it's when up close, flying VFR, when the scenery really comes into its own.

    The ground textures here are done to a resolution of 7 cm, which is of an extremely high-quality, and gives a clear image no matter how low you are to the ground. This includes all roads and railway tracks, which are in turn placed on top of this. This should give you a sense of the detail Orbx has put into this add-on.

    Textures of the ground scenery and buildings are also modelled based on real German buildings and really fit the part. This attention to detail gives any virtual pilot the feeling of actually flying over the country itself, rather than default FSX scenery using US textured and buildings worldwide.

    Orbx - EU Germany North     Orbx - EU Germany North     Orbx - EU Germany North

    A new ground mesh has also been added through their Open Land Class (openLC) system. This replaces the default FSX ground mesh (LOD-64), with their own mesh which is sampled at LOD-11. This means, rivers, mountains and ground levels are within 19 meters horizontal; giving you, the user, extremely realistic terrain and rivers that look exactly how they would in real life. This is then improved upon even more in the VFR scenery areas where the ground and rivers are shaped exactly depending on the satellite imagery. This is something I really liked, as the default FSX mesh is poor at best - improving on this makes flying in these areas far more enjoyable!

    Now let's focus on both individual parts of the ground scenery.


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