The hard working crew at Premier Aircraft Design (PAD) has released another stunning example of their talent, the Shorts SD3-60 regional airliner. Popular on regional flights, the 36-seat aircraft first flew in June 1981. While not the fastest turboprop available, the 360 offered a great value for its price and performance.
PAD’s model is highly detailed with a fully modeled interior cabin, virtual cockpit and engine nacelles that look too real to be in a simulator. The model handles predictably and I found it to be a joy to fly from the virtual cockpit. In addition to the detailed model, a custom soundset brings a new sense of realism to the experience. The model is available for FS9 and FSX from the PAD website.
Jumping on the social media bandwagon, I am now a happy user of Twitter. Anyone interested in following me or seeing what I have to can head on over to my “home” page at the link below. I tweet things relating to social media market, triathlons, working out, daily activities as well as flight simulator releases.
While layoffs are never easy to hear about, the layoff of the ACES studio, responsible for Flight Simulator, has taken us all by surprise. Clearly this decision illustrates how Microsoft evolves with changing times. Economic slow downs force many companies to take a long hard look at resources, future opportunities and current product lines. While Flight Simulator is a very successful Microsoft product, the resources required to keep it running must have been too great and without the revenue to back it up, leading to a redistribution of resources to other revenue generating projects. The company I work for took this same action and it also took many of us by surprise.
I am saddened by this and feel bad for the third party developers that rely on Flight Simulator to grow their products. However, I do not think the end of Flight Simulator is upon us. Developers will continue to develop new aircraft and other add-ons while consumers will continue to fly the friend virtual skies. Once the economy comes back around in five to ten years, Microsoft, I hope, will be redefining the virtual skies. In the meantime, please buy some payware add-ons and keep the developers happy for just a bit longer.
Bruce Fitzgerald released a Hughes 269c for FSX. It is available via avsim, link below. This light-weight, two-seat helicopter was also marketed by Schweizer in the 1980′s and proved to be a popular trainer.
Filename: hughes269c.zip (avsim)
Author: Bruce Fitzgerald
File Size: 6.5mb
Update 2/5/09 – Took the 269c out for a spin around the greater Santa Barbara area and learned to appreciate the forgiving dynamics of this helicopter. It is quite easy to fly and responds well to control inputs. I found myself having more fun than I expected during this test flight. Thank you Bruce!