HST Releases New xAmbience Pro Development Update

December 19, 2020

Earlier this week, X-Plane developer HST released its 10th development blog with the title “Breaking the Silence”. The update brings new information on the status of the team and shines a light on the development progress of HST’s flagship product - xAmbience Pro.

Firstly, the developers expressed their gratitude toward the community for supporting the company during “this difficult period” and their deep appreciation of the trust their customers have placed in them.

Secondly, the developers presented some long-awaited updates on xAmbience Pro. According to the blog, the product has officially entered beta testing with everything going according to plan. HST reveals that this stage has helped to catch at least “30% of the bugs that would be important if there was a launch today and are already working on a solution”. However, the team is not yet ready to share feedback snapshots with the public but will try to publish them with the next development update.

Next up, the team addresses the reasons behind the cancelation of the product’s originally planned September launch. According to the blog, just before the release, the developers had “found critical issues in cloud rendering” and were forced to spend the next two months fixing it. They “rewrote about 50 thousand lines of code in the Weatherman (Our own Weather Engine), separated the weather and its management under our complete control, redesigned the Weatherman (Our Weather Engine) interface, and introduced a bunch of innovations to make use possible”.

However, during the rework, the developers have also added numerous new features into xAmbience. The complete list is as follows:

COMPLEX CLOUDS FORMATIONS

  • Added thunderstorms, towering cumulus, and other complex formations which not available with Default X-Plane.
  • More info in the next update.

NEW CLOUDS RENDERING STRUCTURE & CLOUDS TYPES

  • Added completely reworked clouds rendering structure, the new format of types, and etc.
  •  More info in the next update.

UPGRADED IN CLOUDS VISUALS

  • Added brand new visuals for clouds passing effect. Now you will have realistic high-definition immersion when you fly through clouds.

UPGRADED  SKY VISUALS

  • The body of the sky has been changed, the defects in the lower atmosphere have been removed. Fixed cyclical colors, etc.
  • More info in the next update.

UPGRADED CLOUDS VISUALS

  • Removed repetitions in rendering, added the ability to "soft" render when the cloud layer collides with irregularities, such as mountains. Cloud clarity has also been improved. More info in the next update.

TUNED USER INTERFACE FOR MORE SOFT OPERATION

  • Miscellaneous change, but here it is.

Finally, the developers reveal that xAmbience is likely to released between Q4 2020 and Q1 2021, though a precise date can’t yet be set. Furthermore, the team has launched a new website and started development on 3D clouds.

Another development update will be released sometime next week and will bring new information on xAmbience Pro. For now, the HST has recommended checking out their new Showcase Series on their YouTube channel.

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