• Review: Orbx TrueEarth Great Britain South

    From the air, the effect looking down and around is even more breathtaking. There were times during my test flights that I genuinely felt I was flying above good old 'Blighty' (UK...). Being lucky enough to live in far flung parts of the globe, away from the UK, it almost brought a tear to a glass eye! I have found that it is only when you are not there you actually begin to appreciate things from home, way more than you ever do when you live there. Seeing this part of the UK's green and pleasant land sprawling in front of me was fabulous and is a testament to the quality of this product being offered by Orbx. I am not ashamed to say it even made me feel a little home sick. Well worth a visit if you have never been.

    Orbx Southampton     Orbx Southampton

    Anyway, moving on....cough, cough.....one of my biggest criticisms of X-Plane to date has been the use of very generic house styles in many locations, as having European styles in the UK, just doesn't really work in my opinion. However, the combination of aerial imagery and also UK styled houses, just hit the bull's eye for me. The effect is genuinely game changing if you are a UK flyer, and I believe X-Plane has really now arrived at the grown-ups table.

    Being an island, the UK has miles and miles of amazing coastline, so now seeing details like the White Cliffs of Dover, and the beautiful, but absolutely freezing (believe me even in summer) golden beaches all laid out in front of me was just fabulous. I also loved the fact that vehicles were driving on the 'right', or actually left side of the road, which for a detail junkie like myself, really made my day.

    I spent a good couple of hours with the autopilot set, just scouting the countryside at 1500 feet or so taking it all in. The scary thing is that I already spend a huge part of my week immersed in X-Plane, and now I have an even bigger reason to do so. Being from the bit above 'the border', i.e. Scotlandshire, I can't wait until the North is released, as that will be all my Christmases, birthdays and anniversaries come at once. I think by now you will be getting the idea that I am quite hooked...

    Orbx Southampton     Orbx Southampton

    But seriously, EGHI Southampton and TrueEarth Great Britain South are examples of why I believe 2018 has been a game changing year for X-Plane as a platform. With the introduction of developers like Orbx to the market, and a steady stream of excellent new sceneries being released month on month, if you have the budget, it all bodes well for simmers young and old alike. It doesn't matter if you have been involved for decades or are just putting your first virtual toe into the simulation world, as I believe this is a really exciting time to be taking to the skies. If like me you are still relatively new to developers such as Orbx, I hope this review gives you some insight into what their products are able to bring to the X-Plane table, and why I believe that our virtual world is changing for the better.

    At the end of the day, it still comes down to personal choice, and what you can afford, but the good news is that the level of choice just keeps getting bigger, allowing us to hopefully make more informed choices with what we want from a platform such as X-Plane, or the products being created by developers such as Orbx. If you would like more information, I recommend you take a look at their product range over at their homepage and make up your own mind.

    Orbx Southampton     Orbx Southampton

    I believe it is fair to say that with products such as EGHI Southampton and TrueEarth Great Britain South being released to the market, in combination with the relentless development that is going on over at Laminar Research, the future of X-Plane appears to be in good hands. In my opinion, this truly puts X-Plane up near the top of the sim pile and a genuine contender for the 'go to' sim these days, and dare I say it, even pushing for 'top dog' if things carry on as they are... Hmm food for thought!

    Orbx - Southampton

    I really can't wait to see what 2019 has in store!

    Stuart McGregor

    Orbxdirect.com


    5 Comments
    1. kalizzi's Avatar
      kalizzi -
      Its a lovely review Nels, thorough and informative, well done. For those of us who are not using X-plane, this package is as good as the runway behind you or the altitude above you. I feel betrayed by ORBX for buying EU England package (and the rest of the UK as well) but its not half as good as this one they release for X-plane.
    1. DominicS's Avatar
      DominicS -
      Great review Stuart, thoroughly enjoyed it.

      Cheers

      Dom
    1. rooitou's Avatar
      rooitou -
      Quote Originally Posted by kalizzi View Post
      Its a lovely review Nels, thorough and informative, well done. For those of us who are not using X-plane, this package is as good as the runway behind you or the altitude above you. I feel betrayed by ORBX for buying EU England package (and the rest of the UK as well) but its not half as good as this one they release for X-plane.
      Hey kalizzi. I'm no fan of ORBX, believe me, and have also bought EU England for FSX/P3D. But unlike you, I don't feel betrayed . I may be wrong about this, but I believe EU England was developed by a company called SIM720, whereas the TrueEarth products for X-Plane was either done by another developer altogether or by ORBX in-house. X-Plane also has other "toys" for the developers to work with and it has been several years since the release of EU England. One can therefore assume that some advances in technology and design techniques have been made, resulting in a better-looking product.

      I've been watching the TrueEarth products for X-Plane with interest, but haven't bought yet. The one thing that really puts me off is the enormous disk space requirements. If you install GB North, Central and South, you're going to need around 60GB of hard disk space. Plus I'm hoping that in a few years' time, they're going to bundle them in a single more affordable package and shave off some of the disk space requirements at the same time.
    1. kalizzi's Avatar
      kalizzi -
      Quote Originally Posted by rooitou View Post
      Hey kalizzi. I'm no fan of ORBX, believe me, and have also bought EU England for FSX/P3D. But unlike you, I don't feel betrayed . I may be wrong about this, but I believe EU England was developed by a company called SIM720, whereas the TrueEarth products for X-Plane was either done by another developer altogether or by ORBX in-house. X-Plane also has other "toys" for the developers to work with and it has been several years since the release of EU England. One can therefore assume that some advances in technology and design techniques have been made, resulting in a better-looking product.

      I've been watching the TrueEarth products for X-Plane with interest, but haven't bought yet. The one thing that really puts me off is the enormous disk space requirements. If you install GB North, Central and South, you're going to need around 60GB of hard disk space. Plus I'm hoping that in a few years' time, they're going to bundle them in a single more affordable package and shave off some of the disk space requirements at the same time.
      Thank you for the insight, rooitou, maybe it was an over-expression but the gap between the two products is immense. One would expect that ORBX would release, in parallel an FSX / P3d version. Given the constrains and the technical advantage built into XP11 I agree with you in not seeing how this can be done.
    1. rooitou's Avatar
      rooitou -
      We're in luck kalizzi, I got an e-mail from ORBX this morning saying that TrueEarth GB South is now also available for P3D v4. Same price as the XP11 version, so you'll have to buy it twice if you want it for both platforms. But the P3D4 version weighs in at 57GB, vs 26GB for the XP11 version, so that may influence my decision.

      No doubt the other TrueEarth products will follow, so we'll soon have the whole glorious GB in P3D4 as well, exactly as you wished for. Interestingly, it will make a few other London VFR products redundant overnight, such as Aerosoft London VFR, Prealsoft HD Cities London and even the old +new JustFlight VFR Real Scenery products, which have always been overpriced in my opinion.
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