5 people found this review helpful
Recommended
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 93.9 hrs on record
Posted: Dec 13, 2017 @ 5:32pm

This review is based off of my steam purchase of X-plane 11 with a Steam sale. Most of the details I have included are for new users to X-plane.


SOME HIGHLIGHTS/POSITIVES ABOUT X-PLANE 11


User Interface (UI):

Pleasing to the eyes. The UI in X-plane 11 has been given a complete and welcome overhaul from past versions of the sim. Old and new users will find the settings easier to navigate and understand. Whether configuring a joystick, flight yoke or tweaking the sim’s graphics, the simple sliders, added search function and visuals make configuring X-plane 11 to your liking fun and intelligent.

Lighting:

Impressive. The lighting in X-plane 11 is simply amazing and in my opinion, more realistic than ever. Lighting is vastly brighter (and more realistic IMO) than previous versions of X-Plane ever were. There is a noticeable haze which is somewhat adjustable under weather visual settings and for me it enhances this sim.

Sound:

Good. Aside from the ATC audio, general environment and aircraft sounds are quite realistic and pleasing. Audio for default X-plane 11 aircraft is generally acceptable. Aircraft audio will depend on the original quality of aircraft you download or pay for. (Payware aircraft tend to be more realistic both visually and sound-wise)

Clouds:

Clouds appear to be softer and whiter in X-plane 11 but my FPS did take at least a 10 point frame rate drop when flying in heavier fog/cloud layers unless you use a FlyWithLua shadow/cloud plugin which can help to improve frame-rates.

Frame-rates (FPS):

I have been pleasantly surprised by the improvement in frame-rates in X-plane 11 over X-plane 10. My system is quite old but even with my older processor (Phenom AMD Phenom II 945 Quad Core, 8 gbs Ram and the GTX 750 ti 4gb GPU ) I was able to hover around 30fps when flying in my hometown (KEKA, KACV)*. At these settings within the Seattle Demo Area I was able to get around 22-23 fps, clear day and even better FPS at night. )

Graphics/Autogen:

Overall the default textures for terrain, buildings, road-networks, airports etc. are fantastic in X-plane 11. Days (and nights) are more realistic than ever in X-plane 11 with the new haze (particle system?) that has been added to the atmosphere. HDR lighting makes street lights, runways, and aircraft lighting look real. With a decent graphics card (the more memory the better) visual settings and lights will look great in your sim.

Combat mode and Scenerios:

X-plane 11 includes a combat mode which allows your aircraft to engage in combat with other AI air traffic. Pretty cool! Various scenerios such as glider tow, mid-air refueling, carrier take-off/landing, and space shuttle re-entry and landing are included.

Addons, Plugins and Tweaking

If you like tweaking, modding and using addons/plugins you will love X-plane 11 because adding custom content is a breeze in X-plane 11 and will enhance your sim. (The FlyWithLua plugin is a good example)



SOME NOTE-WORTHY CONS ABOUT X-PLANE 11


User Interface (UI):

If your are coming from X-plane 10 or even 9 you may miss the additional options for rendering that were available in those versions of X-plane. X-plane 11 has simplified the User Interface which is great but I do wish there was an Advanced Option built-in.

Sounds:

ATC in X-plane 11 make work more realistically than in it did in previous versions of X-plane but I wouldn’t know because I haven’t tried it yet. I find the synthesized voice that is used completely unbearable to listen to. Screeching tires sounds when braking still exist in the default Cessna 172.

Steering/ Controls:

It might be just me, but I find the steering/rudder controls of the default Cessna 172 and helicopter erratic and somewhat difficult to control on take-off. New users especially users coming from FSX may have some difficulty at first.

Clouds:

While generally clouds and fog in X-plane 11 are good we know they could be improved visually in terms of their shape, definition and overall appearance. Thunderheads and storm clouds should appear like tall menacing thunderheads (cumulus cloud) rather than layers of stratus. Contrails could be improved and made longer and whiter. I don't remember ever seeing a grey/black contrail.

*Note about X-plane's default airports (for new users):

Some default airports in X-plane 11 will not include buildings but updated airports which do include buildings, hangers and terminals are being added to X-plane via updates.

CONCLUSION

Try the X-plane 11 Demo first. See how it runs on your computer system.
If you enjoy flight simulators such as FSX or PrePar3d, I highly recommend X-plane 11 especially if you can get it on a steam sale.
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