Colin S

Hawaii Photoreal Development

178 posts in this topic

Hi everyone! I just want to officially announce the development of the Hawaiian Islands in photoreal for X-Plane (for real this time). I am in partnership with an FSX developer who created the amazing Hawaii Photoreal series. I am in charge of conversion and distribution for X-Plane. The first island will be Kahoolawe, followed by Lanai (which actually has an airport that will be included). Here's a first peek! Please note that these are text pictures. The actual photoscenery has a resolution four times what you are seeing here. 

 

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tumblr_nfv5eh8xEa1s2oqxno2_1280.png

 

tumblr_nfv5eh8xEa1s2oqxno4_1280.png

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Finished the heliport, just need to put some plants on the island and I'll be done :)

 

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Looking good! Friendly advice from someone who has lived in Hawaii and flown over Kahoolawe many times, the colors are pretty saturated here. Yes the soil is orangeish-red, but in person is much more muted. Lots of photos I see of Hawaii are super saturated as well, when the reality is much more...brown.

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Looking good! Friendly advice from someone who has lived in Hawaii and flown over Kahoolawe many times, the colors are pretty saturated here. Yes the soil is orangeish-red, but in person is much more muted. Lots of photos I see of Hawaii are super saturated as well, when the reality is much more...brown.

 

The problem of comparing the real world to simulation comes down to one factor: possible detail. A computer screen has only so many pixels, whereas your eyes can perceive what is literally a countless amount of detail. I am fully aware of how Kahoolawe looks in real life, but when flying over a dull, brown lump at HD quality on an LCD screen, all you see is a dull, brown, lump. You don't see those seasonal stream tracks that you can spot in real life. You don't see those little nooks and crannies in the cliffs, those bushes along the beaches. 

 

In all honesty, it is not my decision to publish the package with the stauration pumped through the roof, although it is nice in some ways. I am in charge of conversions. For the time being, this is the only version I will be distributing, but since you brought this point up AND I brought this up with my superior... I'll consider creating an optional second file with less contrast, vibrancy and saturation. However, I still stand firmly with my statement of real life vs. the computer screen. Not everyone flies retina ;) 

I'd like to finish by saying that this scenery is to make X-Plane both more realistic and to make it much more beautiful as well. I've been to Maui, Oahu and Kauai, and I've been to the Big Island five times. Although this does not give me any kind of sense of what it must be like to live there, I have the understanding of what outsiders want to see and what they actually see - for instance, on Kauai, quite frankly photographs never capture just how absolutely spectacular the mountains are, simply because the human eye processes real-life differently than it processes simulated life.

 

In conclusion, thank you for your input! Honestly, I'm glad someone has an opinion to voice about this, and to reward you, I'll see about having a more realistic (rather than breathtaking, dreamy-like and such) version available for download in version 1.1 (1.0 is awaiting approval by Cameron as I type :) )

 

Cheers, and as you lived there, I will gladly consider all recommendations and concerns you have for this project! 

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Looks cool thanks! Maybe you could make some custom or edited trees / forest files to match the colour to add to the illusion? I'm not sure how easy or feasible that is though.

 

Andy

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Looks cool thanks! Maybe you could make some custom or edited trees / forest files to match the colour to add to the illusion? I'm not sure how easy or feasible that is though.

 

Andy

 

Maybe for other islands, but the sparseness of the forest on Kahoolawe makes it difficult to make it look realistic. Also, the 2D trees of XP10 (even custom ones) look shabby compared to these guys... I will definitely add trees along the coastlines to that you don't have that awkward 2D transition from land to water... noted! 

 

Thanks :)

Edited by Colin S
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* I meant thank you. And yes, certainly for Maui at the very least I will have some forests.

Edited by Colin S
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Maybe for other islands, but the sparseness of the forest on Kahoolawe makes it difficult to make it look realistic. Also, the 2D trees of XP10 (even custom ones) look shabby compared to these guys... I will definitely add trees along the coastlines to that you don't have that awkward 2D transition from land to water... noted! 

 

Thanks :)

 

Yeah cool!  Even some little shrub type bushes or something would make it more authentic for low level flights.

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I will take this into consideration... once I'm done my statistics exam on Friday. ;)

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Always great to see more x-plane scenery in development,  is there a release date,  any hint at all? 

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It has been released in the file library, only Kahoolawe so far. I predict that Lanai will be released before February 1st, but don't trust anything to do with timing from me ;) Just look up my old PHNL project at this forum... ;) But seriously, Kahoolawe has been released. Molokai should be released by June, hopefully. The order of development with islands is as follows:

  1. Kahoolawe
  2. Lanai
  3. Molokai
  4. Maui
  5. The Big Island
  6. Niihau
  7. Kauai (I have been waiting, literally, years to do Kauai photorea. It may me well more than a year before I get there, and when I do, I will probably spend a HELL of a lot of time on it to make it as beautiful as possible).

I'd like to point out that I am a university student (and not graphic design - I'm in sciences - so I can't incorporate this into my education), so the amount of time I have to devote to this project is very limited. I did all of Kahoolawe, from start to finish in a two and a half day spree of photoshopping and WEDing that was my celebration of the end of semester and beginning of exam period.

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I'd also like to add that I am the only developer in the entire X-Plane world willing to ruin my reputation by creating release dates. I do not promise anything, these are just the dates that I want to have it released by. 

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For those of you following this project, it will be updated this weekend with new textures and a new ICAO code for Kahoolawe as I realized it has a conflict with a default airport. My apologies to all those having trouble flying :)

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quite frankly photographs never capture just how absolutely spectacular the mountains are, simply because the human eye processes real-life differently than it processes simulated life.

 

This is very true! I appreciate your detailed response and understand that artistic taste is of course very subjective. I am super excited to see more of the islands receive photo scenery! I've played around with it a bit, at one point had all of Molokai done, but never had the time nor artistic skills to remove the clouds from the satellite photos in a way that I liked. It was fun for a season but glad to see somebody else taking it on to completion!

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This is very true! I appreciate your detailed response and understand that artistic taste is of course very subjective. I am super excited to see more of the islands receive photo scenery! I've played around with it a bit, at one point had all of Molokai done, but never had the time nor artistic skills to remove the clouds from the satellite photos in a way that I liked. It was fun for a season but glad to see somebody else taking it on to completion!

 

Well, stay tuned for Molokai! (that's the one island I would travel to anew if I had the money - alas, Canadian university...)

 

Just so you know, I'll be updating Kahoolawe to fix a serious apt.dat issue and will include two options for download (one of which you will like): Vivid and Real-Life. I personally love the one that I call "Vivid," but I'm sure you'll be interested in giving the "real life" one a shot.

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As a heads up, for the next releases, I will be experimenting with the usefulness of WORLD2XPLANE. Don't worry - I'll be adding in missing buildings manually and checking that everything looks alright, but I hope it will speed up the process a bit.

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Not bad. Looks promising. Missing the Autogen and the other OSM Objects. That is the biggest issue around Photosceneries, mostly they have missing objects.

 

How did you convert the phototextures from FSX to XP? I have been trying with ORBX Australia. I don't get the ground textures converted.

 

Cheers

Martin

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First of all, ORBX has a pretty specific EULA, make sure you read through all of that:

"Separation of Components. The SOFTWARE PRODUCT is licensed as a single product. Its original component parts created by ORBX may not be separated for use in other software or projects." It does not specify commercial, non-commercial or personal use, which means that in no way are you permitted to convert their products to X-Plane. Please don't violate copyrights, the flight simulation community is small and profits are tight.

 

Now, on a more practical note, say you want to "replicate" the look of Orbx yourself. If it's the USA, EarthExplorer.usgs.gov/ has GeoTIFF images which can be imported into WED and will magically place themselves where they are supposed to be by coordinate referencing. So if you happen to have a legal scenery with great objects and such, and you've got a bit of experience with PhotoShop or Gimp under your belt, go ahead and access some no-restrictions USGS imagery (even free for commercial usage) and plop that into X-Plane. 

 

Second of all... this island has nothing on it. No buildings beyond the work camp and a couple of water tanks at the summit. I don't know what you're expecting. Autogen is something I get rid of when I create scenery so that I can replace it with "custom gen" if you want to call it that. Read up on the Island of Kahoolawe on Wikipedia.

 

The orthophotos were converted as an authorized project under the owner of the Hawaii Photoreal Project, originally created for Flight Simulator X and the original PNG files files transferred to me (originally about 3GB for Kahoolawe), including the silly masks that FSX makes use of to know where water is). They were not converted using a utility, fifty hours were put into accurately and precisely placing them and modifying them to match XP10 HD Mesh - it's not a simple conversion.

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Alright folks - sorry about the inconvenience but 1.1 will be released without the dulled down textures due to a limit on how much time I have to work on X-Plane stuff during exam week at university. I'm uploading the updated 1.1 which removes the airport name conflict.

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Kahoolawe V1.3 will be released tomorrow with optional dulled down textures for enhanced realism but reduced beauty. I'll post screenshots tomorrow morning.

 

UPDATE: Due to a boot problem with my desktop, I can't work on X-Plane related material. 

Edited by Colin S
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Hawaii Photoreal Development will resume next Sunday with the release of colour-corrected orthophotos (optional) for Kahoolawe and the beginning of development of Lanai, as well as the beginning of modelling of trees for the entirety of the project. 

 

Merry Christmas and a happy new year to all! Sorry that I had nothing to release as a gift for Christmas, family and friends basically consume half of December for me. 

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Hey folks! Lanai is underway. A few updates on university to give you an idea of what non-X-Plane stuff is on my plate and how it affects my X-Plane performance:

  1. Calculus is a b... ad and difficult course. It will consume the majority of my free time this semester. So is biology, but other than that, all my courses are cruisers - my university decided that chemistry this semester would be a review of the last year of high school and that psychology would be a friendly discussion about mullets. 
  2. I have no events that will take away entire weekends of development other than a ski trip in January (eh?). Free moose included and the polar bear was only $5 extra if you rented the deluxe igloo. 
  3. My new computer allows me to get hooked in unhealthy quantities on X-Plane development in the evening without getting frustrated because it crashes every five minutes. Because it doesn't.
  4. The roads around here are ugly enough (as are the people) that going anywhere with the girlfriend for trips is out of the question. 
  5. The bad news is that my friends at University of British Columbia are attempting to get me addicted to online games such as Civ. Fortunately, in my books, John gets my dollar before Sid Meier. I need SkyMAXX. One more donation and I'm there.

Anyways, I doubt you bothered reading any of that, but if you did, I'm sure your mind tuned out the word monkey thrown in there as individual letters in a typos. The screenshot you've all been waiting for:

 

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A brief update on how Kahoolawe will look with the much delayed update (I'm waiting another week because I found a good resource of a imagery for the coral reefs surrounding the island). I still have to fix the coastline to match HD Mesh 3.

 

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Hi all! I am two weeks overdue for the release of Kahoolawe - it will be on Sunday, I'm about 99% done the work, I just need to rip out the useless stuff and compress the heck out of it and I'll release it. Lanai is in the works, but in ghost mode... I may release one or two screenies of the airport when it comes around, but other than that, no previews until I am ready for the first release! 

 

PS: As I am transferring at the end of semester, I have dropped calculus from my schedule... more time for X-Plane.

Edited by Colin S
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