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Scenery Review : EGCC - Manchester XP11 by Aerosoft

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Scenery Review : EGCC - Manchester XP11 by Aerosoft

 

After breakfast I did the usual bookmark rounds to see what had been released while I was still in the land of sweet dreams and the thoughts of Scarlett Ingrid Johansson doing nice things with me (I'm not married so I can have these thoughts). First up was a new version for X-Plane11 of EGCC - Manchester from Aerosoft...  it was going to be a very good day!

 

This scenery staple was originally created by the now split Icarius Studios : Scenery Review : EGCC Manchester Airport by Aerosoft/Icarius. Over the years this excellent Manchester scenery has been one of my absolute staple go to sceneries for not only reviews but also for a lot of my own simulation flying. It is an important scenery to me personally, as I was born only a few miles away just over the Welsh border, but also for the sheer quality of the scenery for realism in the simulator. This X-Plane10 EGCC is also part of my 10 ten best of sceneries in X-Plane.... so yes I like this Aerosoft/Icarius scenery and use it a lot.

 

The Good

So an upgrade to X-Plane11 is very welcome and certainly as Aerosoft have now included the SAM - Scenery Animation Manager plugin feature as well...  the grin then got a lot bigger.

 

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First impressions were good as well... the new underlay and ground textures are nice... EGCC never looked better and looked gorgeous.

 

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Some of the original Icarius building modeling is still here, but updated with X-Plane11 dynamic glass reflections and PBR effects...

 

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Glass in the ramp and old control towers are now clear... but it all looks strangely odd?

 

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Runway and taxiways have PBR reflection dynamics for that wet surface look...   and yes I like that wet surface look.

 

Aerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Detail 9.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Detail 12.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Detail 13.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Detail 14.jpg

 

...    so all the new ground textures are redone and X-Plane11 and the ground textures now have Full Orbx (TrueEarth) compatibility.

 

The SAM - Scenery Animation Manager plugin has also been added and obviously it is a very welcome addition... but I am still a little perplexed to see that a lot of the airbridges still however don't match up correctly to the aircraft doorways... some aircraft like the FlightFactor A350 are still well out or even completely out of alignment?

 

Aerosoft_EGCC_XP11_SAM 1.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_SAM 2.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_SAM 3.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_SAM 4.jpg

 

The ToLiSS Airbus A319 alignment is slightly too high as well... as these airbridges are manually configured by Stairport Sceneries and don't rely on the developers to do the alignment, which makes the whole point of the out of alignment issue a bit more of a head scratcher.

 

There is also now a "Winter" MOD as well... the winter mode can be used with the various version from winter textures and colour corrections for Orbx sceneries, TerraMaxx with and the JSGME MOD, of which I used here....

 

Aerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Winter 1.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Winter 2.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Winter 3.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Winter 4.jpg

 

... the MOD works, but there are areas of joins that are (green and sharply) noticeable, trees and many buildings are white... whited out, so they don't look authentic alongside the default winter trees....  but any winter settings are always welcome.

 

The bad and the Really Ugly

To this point the new EGCC - Manchester in X-Plane11 form looks very good...  but I was realising that the scenery was not showing a lot of the detail that was present on the earlier XP10 version, and then the more I looked at the detail then the more horrified I became in what I saw....

 

No I ❤️ MCR?  (XP10 left, XP11 Right)

 

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Yes I know that the ❤️ logo is now a faded mess at EGCC, but I still like it...     Taxiway J Blast wall is missing and you have the wrong warehouse design?

 

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The "Airport Hotel" pub detail is stripped bare?  Oh the pain! "Oh my god what have they done to this scenery!"

 

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All the scenery fencing is missing and it is highly noticeable, certainly around the northeastern boundary, where the road networks are completely totally ruined as well...

 

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You get better detailed 3d vehicles, but the rest is simply a mess, there is no carpark lighting, no fencing, no entrance gates... well nothing?

 

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The quality detailed carparks have been replaced by crap flat versions, and again with no fencing or lighting?

 

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Airport approach road networks are totally ruined, they are just now a flat green not anything.

 

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Old MCR Control tower is missing the ground radar, the building textures are also different, and have lost their worn decades old feel? The filled in green tower windows look years better than the newer clear versions.

 

Aerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Issues 18.jpgAerosoft_EGCC_XP11_Issues 19.jpg

 

The "Runway Visitor Park" has not been spared the murdering either? The Cafe/Museum with the internal Concorde that can now not be seen...  all detail here is wiped away.

 

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... no fencing... oh why not!...   just let the kiddies play on the taxiways. Engine test area is missing the inner blast fence....

 

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....  and the Runway 05L threshold radar tower is also completely missing.... "but oh who by now really cares anymore!"

 

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Lighting

Obviously with so much detailed lighting removed, you knew beforehand that the EGCC XP11 lighting would be bad, and it is...  (XP10 left and XP11 Right)

 

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Even if the lighting is slightly dated in the XP10 version, it is still world's away from the horrible lighting in the XP11 version... lovely lit carparks are rendered into black holes in the XP11 version?

 

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Nicely lit motorways are also replaced by a darkness of gloom...

 

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Summary

Icarius Studios created one of the best loved and highly detailed sceneries of EGCC - Manchester for X-Plane10, this was of course in association (or branding) with Aerosoft.

 

This is the newer X-Plane11 version from Aerosoft. With the upgrade to XP11 comes all the X-Plane11 dynamic features like reflective glass, taxiways and runways. Newer and better ground textures for use with Orbix TrueEarth compatiblity and AI Traffic and World Traffic 3 compatibility. Winter textures that will change with the seasons and of course the current scenery must have in the SAM - Scenery Animation Manager plugin. All very nice.

 

The general idea with an upgraded project, either in an aircraft or scenery. Is that the newer version is usually a big step forward in quality and features than the older version it is replacing in line with the advancement of the simulator....  in most if not all cases that is usually the case or the deal.

 

But this newer X-Plane11 version of replacing the Icarius Studios XP10 version is simply a devastating mess, 60% of the original detail is simply gone, road networks ruined, average modeling and textures, missing elements like radar (and their towers), no fencing, road, street and carpark lighting and all the original quality is now in tatters, file size is now enormous to the detail, Winter textures are over whited.

Words like "Epic Fail", "Monstrosity" and any other thesaurus crap you lavish on this scenery is well deserved. God help us if Aerosoft do the same hatchet job on Icarius Studio's other sister scenery in EDIW - Dublin.

 

If you already have the original XP10 EGCC from Icarius then simply don't replace it, you don't need to as you will be installing a far more inferior scenery...  I would personally will pay anyone to install the SAM plugin on the XP10 older scenery to have that functionality, the rest shown here is simply not worth bothering with...   Aerosoft's EGCC XP11 is certainly NOT Highly Recommended...   Just keep the old one!

 

______________________________________________________________________

 

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Yes! EGCC - Manchester XP11 by Aerosoft is Available (sic) from the X-Plane.Org Store here :

 

Airport Manchester XP11

 

Price Is US$19.99

 

Features
  •   HD ground textures including PBR
  •     Custom HDR night lighting
  •     Custom static aircrafts
  •     HD vegetation
  •     Animated service vehicles
  •     Animated jetways/VDGS/marshaller (SAM plugin required)
  •     Full Orbx compatibility (Orbx TrueEarth required)
  •     Compatible with default AI Traffic and World Traffic 3

 

Requirements

X-Plane 11

Windows, Mac and Linux
4Gb VRAM  Minimum - 8Gb+ VRAM Recommended

Current Version: 1.0 (April 2nd 2019)

 

Installation
Download scenery file size is download 1.30Gb and with the full installation installed in your custom scenery folder at a huge 5.05Gb
 
One folder:
  • Aerosoft - EGCC Manchester
 
Replaces the original three install files:
  • EGCC - Manchester Ground Traffic
  • EGCC Manchester Airport
  • EGCC Manchester Mesh

 

OPTIONS Folder holds "Winter" files. They cover Orbix, TerraMaxx and JSGME MOD

 

  • Colors + Seasons
  • JSGME Mods

 

SAM - Scenery Animation Manager Plugin - Free, is required for this scenery

 

Documents

One manual with notes in English and German

  

  • Manual_Airport_Manchester_de-en.pdf

 

______________________________________________________________________

  

Review by Stephen Dutton

3rd April  2019

Copyright©2019 : X-Plane Reviews 

 

(Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions)

 

Review System Specifications:

Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit - 16 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 512gb SSD 

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.31

Addons: Saitek x52 Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini 

Plugins: Environment Engine by xEnviro US$69.90 : JARDesign Ground Handling Deluxe plugin : US$19.95 : WorldTraffic 3.0 Plugin - US$29.95 : BetterPushBack - Free : SAM Plugin - Free (required)

Scenery or Aircraft

ToLiSS319 (A319) by ToLiSS (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$69.00

 

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Yes you are right here... Aerosoft are going on low pricing to redevelop sceneries, and even ridiculously low pricing and getting the return of extremely poor quality from very poor inexperienced developers...   is that a way of keeping quality in your products? If the product is good and high quality then it will give you good return on your investment, in reality this EGCC is now a ruined throwaway product...  so even that minimal investment is lost as well. Aerosoft have astounded me over the years, but this one is one is beyond even anything I can remember... how do they stay in business?

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Thanks for going to the effort of such an in-depth comparative review. I am fairly new to x-plane and am building a UK base as I have generally little time for long hops and I decided to go with Orbx TE. All parts are fairly large which limits what I can do. I only have a 750Gb SSD in my system for x-plane... 

 

Not or worth the money for such a mess...

 

A

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Thanks for the review Stephen. You show again why this is the best site for X-plane reviews. So many other sites don't give the level of detail required to serve as truly useful reviews that can inform the purchasing decision. Too many are glorified copies of press releases.

 

It's so difficult to track what version a scenery is up to, when it was released, whether the "XP11" version is actually an improvement. Your site has become my go-to destination for truly useful information. I also love that you review updates to aircraft also as so many are released unfinished and need time to become decent value. Keep up the great work!

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Well thanks 🤗 Several points are that X-PlaneReviews looks at the product before reviewing, as you noted if it isn't finished, it is not reviewed. Secondly we look at ourselves as a filter, in the actual product and in the way to invest in the simulator, if it's good or really good we want you to have it, if it is crap then don't waste your cash. There is now so much being released, but the point is if it isn't up here or mentioned it is not worth investing in. On that theme if we think a project is worth investing in, even if it is not at that quality level it should be then we will promote it. Thanks again.

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