Threshold Review: iniScenes’ Queenstown Airport
Threshold Review: iniScenes’ Queenstown Airport
January 7, 2022
Queenstown Airport is located in the Frankton, Otago region, on the southern island of New Zealand. With only a single terminal that handles both international and domestic flights. It has been expanded several times since the 1990s to cope with the introduction of international flights and the rapid increase in passenger numbers. The terminal consists of a single level and does not utilise jet bridges meaning that all access between the terminal and planes entails walking across the apron. Despite only having a small apron, the airport operates with a plethora of airlines connecting Queenstown to the northern island and mainland Australia.
IniScenes’ Queenstown was a port over from their MSFS rendition, this can be seen in parts of their rendition but overall the conversion has been done very well and the X-Plane community was very appreciative of another high-quality New Zealand airport.
Installation and Documentation
The installation was a breeze, utilizing the new iniManager, I just clicked install and all the hard work was done. The scenery took up around 3GBs of space which was expected when the devs included surrounding area ortho and more than 50 detailed buildings.
Documentation-wise, Queenstown has one pdf file that holds information on the airport installation, support, and legal information. Let’s talk more about the feature list, included below, that can be found in their rendition of Queenstown.
- Hand-made ground polygons with crisp, bespoke texture sets (Runways, aprons, paths, roads)
- Hundreds of hand-placed custom car models
- True-to-life airport landside recreation with custom ground decals, signposts, vegetation,
- parking barriers and more
- Hand-placed, high-definition signage, ground clutter, vehicles, handling objects and more
- which have been custom-modelled in house by the iniScene team
- Bespoke taxi signage as it is in the real world
- Over 50 individual custom made airport and surrounding buildings to a high level of detail
- Main airport terminal interior with lighting and custom objects
- Hand-corrected 30cm/px satellite imagery.
The first item to catch my eye was the detail in the interior of the terminal, more on that later. The level of detail worried me with regards to performance but the airport has been well optimized and I was keeping a steady 60 FPS in the ToLiss A321 NEO and with ZL16 Ortho. The external textures are average, not 4K like other sceneries but still high quality enough that they could easily be read. Modelling of the area is very good, polygons are high leaving crisp edges and sharp quality to the terminal building.
Buildings all around the airport and even in the surrounding area have been modelled well. The team at iniScene has got the perfect balance between quality and performance on their modelling as I didn’t experience any frame drops when investigating the objects. Matched with the modelling, the textures throughout are high quality. Although not 4K, they are high enough in quality to give the surrounding scenery a good level of detail.
Ground textures have been done well, although IniScene has used Ortho imagery instead of hand places textures, they have added markings over the top to present an accurate representation of the airport. The runway has been presented with high detailed textures as they have added, rubber marks from touchdown, and the wear and tear that all runways experience over the years.
Moving into the airport, the team has done a great job at modelling the interior of the airport. Especially in regards to the front portion of the airport, where all of the airline check-in desks are located. As we move around the terminal, we reach the Airpresso Cafe, where passengers can indulge in a hot drink or beverage of their choice before their flight. All around, the interior textures of the airport are not great. Logos lack quality but objects such as chairs and tables are of better quality. To be fair, nailing interior textures is a difficult task as they are seen when simulating flights and I think it is great that iniScene has even added an interior as a lot of developers skip this and it adds that extra sense of realism to the whole experience.
Attention to Detail, Night Lighting, and Surrounding Area
Although some areas don’t offer great quality, iniScene has kept high attention to detail. Whether it is the brands in the airports or even the high-quality car park signs. IniScene has done a great job of adding unique buildings like Maya Music, Game Over kart racing track, and SITE trampoline park. Furthermore, Bus stops, cargo containers, and airport vehicles can all be spotted around the airport.
Night Lighting is an aspect that not a lot of people think about when purchasing a scenery addon. It comes along to be such a big feature when flying from dusk till dawn. Night lighting wasn’t cut short in Queenstown, iniScene has not only placed lights all around the terminal building to light up the apron, but they have also placed warm street lights around the car park and surrounding area extending the level of nighttime detail lighting.
The surrounding area holds a lot of detail, the small area of Frankton on the edge of Lake Wakatipu was done well, high amounts of custom buildings were placed well and detailed cars filled the roads around. Accurate signs, bus stops, and even vegetation can be found all around the airport.
To conclude iniScene Queenstown is an all-around great product for the light price of £10.99 Excl VAT, albeit that areas of the conversion will be visible in places, the middle marketed price is what I would expect to pay for a highly detailed airport. With high-quality modelling and decent textures, pilots receive everything they want for the price tag. However, Queenstown isn’t very popular in the flight simulator community so whether you would find online ATC or other traffic may vary. This is the only downside as the airport just doesn’t hold traffic like other airports in New Zealand. This said I will still be visiting Queenstown frequently on my New Zealand flights as I now have high-quality scenery to land into.
Big thanks to inbuilds for providing me with this product to review, head over to the inibuilds if you would like to purchase a copy of Queenstown Airport.
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