• Review: Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane 11

    Svalbard

    Publisher: Aerosoft

    Review Author:
    Stuart McGregor

    Suggested Price:
    $45.99

    Buy Here

    Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane

    If you have ever wanted to know what it is like to visit the Arctic Circle, Svalbard may be for you. The scenery pack being reviewed in this article is a package of five airfields specifically for X-Plane 11 and is designed by the well-known Aerosoft design team. The Svalbard archipelago is sovereign to Norway and it is about midway between continental Norway and the North Pole, so you may see Santa Claus while you are there... The islands of the group range from 74° to 81° north latitude, and from 10° to 35° east longitude, so if you are looking for somewhere just that little bit different this is worth a look. The scenery pack not only gives you the airfields but also the surrounding terrain, which I understand to be missing from the base X-Plane world. The version I reviewed was 1.02 which has had a few corrections from the original release.

    Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane

    Purchase, Download, Documentation And Installation

    This scenery pack retails at $45.99, which on the face of things, does seem a little steep, however as I mentioned, you do get five different airfields, so actually it is not a bad deal in my view. The download is a whopping 2.9 GB, and at a download speed of 3 MB/sec, it took me a good 15 minutes or so to download, so be aware this is a monster if your download speed is a little slow. The description provided over at www.fspilot.com gives the usual level of detail of what you get for your money as well as the prerequisite system requirements, all pretty standard stuff for payware scenery.

    Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane

    As far as the installation goes, well I have to be honest and say that I struggled with this, which is a little embarrassing. Over the years I have come across all sorts of add-ons, aircraft, plug-ins, scenery, etc., however this is the first time that I started to get really frustrated with things.

    In the download, I was faced with two folders, one with a custom livery for Carenado's B200 and a video clip, and a second folder with all the scenery elements. As I don't have the B200 in my hangar I was unable to comment on this, however a nice touch if you happen to have it. I really liked the real-life flight video to Svalbard and watching the flight crew explain some of the tricks of the trade when flying in that part of the world. What I found really fascinating was just how much manual adjustment the captain was having to make to the flight controls on his final approach...amazing...worth a watch.

    Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane

    But back to the installation. Reading the instructions which took me a while to find as they are located in one of the scenery folders (ENSB), it should have been really simple, however I found it to be more complicated than that. The short manual provided is in German and English, that I found a little lacking on the installation front if I am entirely honest. My frustration led me to contact the Aerosoft help team for advice, and even after their reply, which I should mentioned was very quick, I still struggled with getting the Winter MOD feature to work with the installer. Eventually I gave up and just manually installed the files and hey presto! Snow! To be honest it wasn't that hard in the end of the day for anyone familiar with X-Plane's file structures, just means you have to keep over-writing files if you want to change between the seasons. Why I was unable to get the MOD tool to work I am not entirely sure, and there is every possibility it was my own incompetence, but as I said, generally I know my Custom Scenery Folder from my Root Folder...

    Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane     Aerosoft - Svalbard for X-Plane

    One last positive comment on the manual before moving on, and that is to highlight the descriptions of the individual airfields as these are nicely done and provide a little background on each of the airfields such as aircraft types, high level maps of the area and possible flight paths.


    2 Comments
    1. DominicS's Avatar
      DominicS -
      A little update from Stuart:

      Basically the main scenery folders go in the X-Plane Custom Scenery folder, the rest in the X-Plane root folder.

      Aerosoft's service was excellent - on both occasions they replied very quickly!

      Stuart McGregor

    1. W33's Avatar
      W33 -
      Impressive looking scenery! Nicely written too.

      Thanks

      W33
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