Our good friends at Stairport Sceneries are back from a whirlwind trip away to the UK for an appearance at Flight Sim Show in Cosford, making the announcement that SAM version two will have a global jetways addon.
An interface overhaul was first on the cards, with the local METAR now available at your fingertips in the new UI window. This information is sourced from either xEnviro, Active Sky or X-Plane itself, depending on your simulator setup. Next, a flight details box. Enter your callsign, destination and off block time and in return, SAM will display the OBT, callsign and destination both in the UI window and on the VDGS (visual docking guidance system) on the stand.
The jetway connect/disconnect menu also received a nice update, with a much more visually appealing diagram appearing showing where each door is.
Automatic doors are another big drawcard of SAM version 2, with aircraft doors now able to open independent of user control, much like how the jetways automatically connect in the current SAM version. This of course is only available on aircraft whose doors actually open.
Another clever bit of tech shown off at the presentation regarded jetway pathfinding. In short, dual jetway connections won't be plauged with the issue of airbridges colliding with eachother, and in a case of a stand with two jetways being occupied with an aircraft only using one door, now, logically, the closet airbridge will connect to the single door.
In addition to this, in future, SAM will also have seasonal modes - inspired by Stairport's earlier struggles with seasonal textures bundled with their airport sceneries. This is also selectable from the user interface.
SAM version 2 will remain free for the end-user, with developers wishing to use the tool in their sceneries required to purchase a license for it. The global addon, which adds animated jetways to all airports using default jetways in X-Plane, will be available with a small fee. The MisterX6 Library will also get global SAM jetway compatibility in an update soon.
Beta testing for SAM version 2 will begin by the end of this month and will run for a short time up until release. After that, Marten says to expect a gap of about two weeks until the global jetways addon is released for purchase. Pricing has not been decided yet, but will be available through all stores that sell Aerosoft sceneries.
Looking into the future, Marten expects animated ground stairs and other equipment to become possible through the plugin, much like the animated marshallers that are currently available in SAM version 1.
Moving on to scenery news, Marten announced that Spanish developer PDI Simulations has joined forces with the Aerosoft-published brand, making PDI's previously released Vitoria scenery a Stairport project.
After a short introduction to their most recent release, Charlottetown, Marten moved on to a brand new scenery: Saint-Tropez (LFTZ). This will be published through Aerosoft and is an in-house development. It is perfect for business jets, claims the developer. LFTZ will use the SAM seasonal library when released to give it a more realistic winter feel.
Chania was next on the cards, seeing its first public preview at the UK event. The Greek airport is located on the island of Crete and serves as an excellent holiday destination for airlines such as Ryanair and EasyJet. Aerosoft's version of the scenery coincides with the release of JustSim's edition, which dropped at the start of last month.
A surprise entry to the British market was up next for the brand, with Newcastle (EGNT) currently in development in partnership with I.D.S. There aren't many details on this project currently, and was rather quickly glossed over by Marten en-route to what he admits as his favourite upcoming airport: Nuremberg.
EDDN is being developed in a three-way partnership between Aerosoft-aligned developers; 29Palms, Captain7 and Stairport Sceneries.
The last we heard from Captain7 regarding X-Plane was on the last day of 2018, where they said they were considering converting the scenery to X-Plane. This has obviously become a reality, though no release date is planned.
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