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BEWARE: Theres utter dross out there!

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

Hey,

Just wanted to place a posting for our users to beware a couple of new commercial payware add-ons that have come out for FS2004.

They both relate to Airbus A320 and are both incredibly disappointing in a lot of respects, the main one being operational BUGS. It is so frustrating to spend £25 / $40 on what you think will be a high quality add-on that you will use for a long time, only to have to discover it is not even in a state to have been commercially released. The distributors will talk about UPDATES but for people like me, whose Flight Sim set up is entirely OFF-LINE, and with no Internet at home, I am stuck with a prouct that at best is half baked, albeit being in a lovely colourful box.

1). AIRBUS FLY-BY-WIRE, FS2004 / 2002

This was marketed by the retailer as a 'Brand new release for FS2004'. In reality it is a second rate FS2002 add-on, and users on FS2004 actually
lose some of the capabilities that will only work on FS2002. I am talking mainly about the TCAS system that looked so good in the Ad and on the box - it works in FS2002 but not in FS2004.... mmm.

The External model is about the same quality as the default jets (B737), which I suppose is ok, but hey why pay £25 for that level of quality when you pay £25 for the PMDG add-ons and get such a superior product ?

The virtual cockpit on this plane is just awful - I can't elaborate.. just plain awful.

Next is the fact that you need to run this add-on with the CD in - not the FS2004 disc and I seemed to get a lot or crashes when changing between planes due to this.

Next, the Joystick uses a different configuration to normal - and I just couldn't get it working right.... the documentation and README files just aren't up to date on all the problems with this.

In a word: avoid (at all costs)

2). A320 PILOT IN COMMAND

Being a sucker for punishment I bought this one straight after the one above.... The above is made by Apollo who I hadn't heard of but this one had the magic "Aerosoft" badge on the box so I was confident... but sadly this one is equally as full of BUGS, equally frustrating (they think that its good that there is NO 2D cockpit but flying from the Virtual Cockpit is just NOT PRACTICAL !

Firstly, this add-on crashes everytime if you load it straight up, on a fresh FS session... you need to load a default plane, then load this one to get anything... Next bug is a BIG BUG - A KILLER BUG !

After loading the planes, the engines are just priming - to my horror, when they had finished priming, the plane started BOMBING down the runway eve though the AIRBUS Throttle Mode was at IDLE, the AutoThrottle button was OFF, AutoPilot was OFF and nothing was set up in the FMC. CRASH ! Time to start again. This time it started happening again so I hit CTRL+SHIFT+F1 to cut the engines.... this woked. Until I started the engines again.... the tiny little, hard to read ND display revealed that the plane was launching in a TOGA LOCK mode - something that an Airbus has which locks the throttle to avoid STALL - but there isn;t much risk of stall, while you are on the ground, still loading passengers.

There are literally dozens and dozens of key commands that you need to remember to look at the right part of the cockpit at the right time.... the guages are hard to read, the plane doesn't seem to keen to take off at VR or even V2..... for an AeroSoft release, that was developed by Wilco, this is utterly shocking !

So beware - The reason I am so keen to get a A320 is because I have the A340 / 330 from Just Flight and it is SO GOOD... But I wanted something to do shorter-haul stuff in, as an alternative to my 737NG... Unfortunately, it looks like it isn't going to happen as I have exhausted the commercial payware A320s that are available, and I'll not be rushing out for any more in a hurry.....

I've been so 'scarred' by apalling CD add-ons lately, that I have switched to Scenery buying for a while - World Airports 2 and 'Holiday Resorts 2004' are both in the post... What could possibly go wrong ......

20 Responses

Pro Member Chief Captain
Alex (Fire_Emblem_Master) Chief Captain

This is why i dont purchase addons for FS04...besides, if i really wanted to, i could download a full version from a file sharer, then test it, and if i liked it, i could buy it!

But i dont cause i dont wanna be made into a sucker]

no offense gsp kid!

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

I get what you're saying F_E_M but my experiance is that 85% of the Commercial stuff that I bought is excellent, and I get great value out of it... a brief experiance with a Downloaded freeware BAe 146 some months ago, revealed utter rubbish that was far inferior to the default planes on FS.

It goes without saying that Commecial add-ons will usually have been developed by a strong team and will usually be good... for instance, I don't believe it's possible to get anything as good as the 737NG of the PSS A340 as Freeware (although I could be wrong!).

The main aspect for me is I have no choice - I can't download at all at home... I only get to access this site at my work but the CD-R is even disabled, so I don't have an option to get stuff onto my FS system by way of CDR transfer....

BUMMER ! Biggest downer is PMDG have FREE livery downloads for 737NG owners, at their web-site, (includeing BA) and I can't get 'em !!

But I have the following commercial add-ons and I'd say all are excellent and great value and are far superior to the default FS stuff :-

737NG, A340, FS Terrain, Cessna Golden Eagle, Dash 8-300, DA20 Katana, VFR Photographic Scenery (UK), etc, etc, etc

The only CRUD that I've ended up with are these two A320s...

Pro Member Chief Captain
Alex (Fire_Emblem_Master) Chief Captain

You have a point also. And I'm sure there is great add-ons out there, It's just that when you buy something like a add-on, you cant really see it. You see pictures, but hey, i can show you a picture of me with a hitler mustache, even tho i dont have one...ya know, with that kind of thing, you gotta be careful

I'm listening to Heino as i type this...just thought you should know!

Pro Member First Officer
Riclo First Officer

😎 Aloha GPS Kid, I would like you to try a Plane that would meet your expectations and its Free!.. So if you would do me the honor of d/loading it from simvation.com and letting me know what you think of it? Its in the "Props 2004 page 25" the name of the Plane is the"Howard 500" zip file is "hw5vc4.zip", I think you might like it but then it depends on what you like to fly. ( I use this Plane on my site as a guide for people to use as a guage to buying any pay for Plane) Ric Hack

Pro Member Chief Captain
RadarMan Chief Captain

👍 Riclo is 100% correct, the Howard is one of the finest examples of free-ware aircraft that can be had for 2004. If they had wanted they could have made it pay-ware and sold as many or more than others.

See this post of mine.

https://forum.flyawaysimulation.com/forum/topic/1648/howard-500ready/

Radar

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

Awwwww ! Evil or Very Mad Twisted Evil It sounds a great plane to fly !

Thanks Riclo, but unfortunately I can't dowload right now..... by PC at home (with Flight Sim on) is really cool but it's not connected to the Internet.

My PC here in the office is connected to the Internet but the CD Writer is disabled so I can't transfer downloads by CD...

Just have to wait until I move house in January and get back on-line at home.

Thanks for the recommendation though!

GPS

Pro Member First Officer
Kurt Stevens (KurtPStevens) First Officer

The Howard 500 is a great plane. As it is free-ware, can anyone think of a good reason why I could not burn it onto a CD and SnailMail it to David?

Just wondering if there could be and legal issues with it.

Pro Member Trainee
Scott Archbold (Scotteiboi) Trainee

If it is in a zip file, it should send and burn.....

Pro Member Chief Captain
tomthetank Chief Captain

Read Just send it but Ermm... dont tell anyone Secret

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

Wow Kurt, that is mighty kind of you to offer to do that !!

I would have to insist on paying your costs (through PayPal or by return snail-mail)...

Why don't you see how you get on, in trying to get it to CD-R, if it seems to work, let me know on this posting, or through a private messge on this site........ and I can let you know address, etc. Don't go to too much trouble or hassle though, but if it works and you don't mind throwing it in the post, I'd be hugely grateful !

David.

Pro Member Chief Captain
RadarMan Chief Captain

As long as you don't charge for the aircraft ( reasonable mailing fee's are an exception) it is perfectly legal to do.
To burn them and sell them on e-bay is violating the EULA that you read in the read-me.

Radar

Pro Member First Officer
Kurt Stevens (KurtPStevens) First Officer

Hi David, I downloaded both versions of the Howard and will be happy to burn them to a CD for you.

I have a suggestion. I only have dial-up at home and some on these files can take FOREVER to download, so I don’t do it at home. I don’t know if they sell them in the UK, but I went out to my local Wal*Mart and bought a 128Meg JumpDrive for $35.

A JumpDrive is a stick of RAM about as big as your thumb with a USB tip. I download at work on a nice T1 LAN, dump it on the JumpDrive and go! Very Cool!

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

Hi Kurt,

Yeah, we can get Memory sticks over here, I'm thinking about getting one soon... So I've been checking out your suggestion, as we certainly do have USB on the front of the PCs here at work, so in theory I could download Flight Sim stuff and transfer it home with the Memory Stick!

Let's hold for now and see what happens, I'll post later and let you know how it looks - thanks again for the help!

Pro Member Chief Captain
tomthetank Chief Captain

Secret If you are stuck,and Kirk do'es not mind Ermm... Im a lot nearer ,to save on postage 😉

Pro Member Trainee
Steeev Trainee

I have a USB MP3 player, which I use as a flash drive as well, in a similar fashion to the item Kurt is talking about.
I also have no connection at the mo, due to house-moving, but still can d/l anything I need from work (I get in early, obviously 😉 ) and then just upload it when I get home.
Ebayers knock out 256Mb ones for around £40. Plenty of space for music for the commute, and several planes/chunks of mesh!

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

Bleedin' Eck guvnor !! I've just realised I have a MP3 player and I remember reading in the manual about how it can be used as a 128mb memory stick... so I may have what I needed all along..... DOH !

My only prob may be that I don't have Winzip on the work PC (although I do at home).... and I may be forbidden from downloading it...

Will have to check this out with our friendly Desktop Support IBM peeps.

Pro Member First Officer
Kurt Stevens (KurtPStevens) First Officer

Downloads are already zipped, so you dont need it at work. 🙂

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

Hey Guys,

Well firstly thanks to you both ! Unfortunately, any type of Downloading at work is a no no, so I can't get the fab Howard that way....!

Kurt - thanks so much for offerin to send it over on disc but it does probably make better sense that good old TTT sends it up as I'm about 300 miles away from him but about 4,000 miles away from your good self!

TTT - If you're sure you don't mind sending me a CD-R up, that would be really fab but first I'm going to take the mickey even further while I'm at it! Do you think you could also go to www.precisionmanuals.com and see of you can download the 737NG-600/700 British Airways livery to the CD-R as well ..... ? I've no idea if it's possible to put that one livery to CDR or not but I'm dying to get it !

If you have a PayPal account, let me know your PayPal email, so I can pay for the blank CD-R and postage.

If you can email me at: david.rogers@uk.royalsun.com ...... I'll reply with my address and stuff.

Absolute "Diamond Geezer" !!

Cheers, GPS.

Pro Member Chief Captain
tomthetank Chief Captain

😀 Got the Howard,one with virtual cockpit and one without,and the BA repaint 🙄
Now we are touching 31mbs on that disc which means it will burn in the blink of an eye 😉
There is a heck of a lot of empty space left.Anything else?

Pro Member Captain
David (The-GPS-Kid) Captain

Excellent TTT, can't wait to see the Howard, and I'm over the moon about that BA livery been after it for ages.

As per my email TTT, anything else that won't cause a headache for you to download and that you think may be interesting stick it on the disc, the more the merrier!

Ta!

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