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News! - Released! : EKBI Billund XP - Denmark by Vidan Design Back in June X-PlaneReviews reviewed the first scenery from FlightSim crossover developer Vidan Design. Vidan Design specialises in sceneries within Denmark and this first release of EKYT - Aalborg XP which was a revelation and was a scenery that I really liked from ,my very first impression, for a FS developer, Vidan did however cover most of the X-Plane11 features with professionalism and one of the highlights was the excellent intergration of the scenery into the X-Plane11 landscape. So here is their second release with EKBI - Billund, which is the second (after EKCH - Copenhagen Airport, Kastrup) largest airport in Denmark. First impression of EKBI are excellent... SAM - Scenery Animation Manager plugin (Plugin Required) feature is available here at BLL - Billund and it is excellent. With marshallers to guide you into the gate and all the remote stands are also active... Main Features also include: Billund Airport EKBI, BLL airport scenery Animated jetways (SAM plugin needed) Working Visual Docking Guidance System (SAM plugin needed) Custom modeled airport vehicles Photoreal ground imagery Custom modeled vegetation, grass, trees City of Billund scenery (Legoland not included) Noted the famous Billund Legoland is not included here... Scenery intergration like AAL is excellent. Airport lighting is also top notch... EKBI Billund XP - Denmark by Vidan Design is now available from the X-Plane.OrgStore here: EKBI Billund XP - Denmark Price is US$22.90 Requirements are: X-Plane 11 Windows, Mac or Linux 4GB VRAM Minimum - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended SAM Plugin is required Download Size: 363 MB Current Version : 1.0 (October 24th 2019) ________________________________________ News by Stephen Dutton 27th October 2019 Copyright©2019: X-Plane Reviews (Disclaimer. All images and text in this preview 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)
Scenery Review : EKYT - Aalborg XP by Vidan Design Travel any air routes south to north or east to west over northern Denmark you are usually bound to fly through Nav-Aid VORTAC AAL - Aalborg (116.7), and as I frequently route myself through from western Germany or Belgium to Oslo or Helsinki then AAL is always a major crossing point of the flightplan. From the air AAL is just a major airway intersection, but in reality AAL is also a very nice airport in northern Jutland. (Navigraph) Aalborg (AAL) is the third busiest airport in Denmark after Copenhagen and Billund with one and a half million passengers a year, but it is also a major strategic military base for the Royal Danish Air Force (RDAF) 721 Squadron, and Air Transport Wing Aalborg (logistics) called Aalborg Air Base (Flyvestation Aalborg). EKYT - Aalborg XP by Vidan Design Aalborg XP is the first scenery for X-Plane11 from Vidan Design, another newcomer, but this is already a very impressive debut. Aalborg in both the military and commercial areas covers a lot of the general area of the scenery, basically the two zones are separated by the two parallel runways of 08L/26R and 08R/26L, but they are quite significant in width with 08L/26R at 8694 x 148 feet / 2650 x 45 meters (the main runway) and 08R/26L at 8366 x 74 feet / 2550 x 23 meters. Military is to the north and the commercial is to the south, but there is also another significant military area to the east as well. Impressive is the intergration of the Hi-Res Orthophoto scenery, into the background default X-Plane textures, yes this is always an extremely big deal to me, I want a pure transition from the default to the custom for a perfect simulation, and if I get it, I will be very well pleased... here at EKYT it is absolutely perfect. More help is provided by the German autogen, which is perfect here and Aalborg itself is well represented in this autogen form at the full maximum setting. Outwardly the area looks open and spaced out in both the military and commercial zones, but there is a lot of detail in here, in fact it is excellent. _______________________________________________ Aalborg Airport Aalborg Lufthavn IATA: AAL - ICAO: EKYT 08L/26R - 2,654 (8,707ft) Concrete / Asphalt / Bitumen 08R/26L - 2,549 (8,363ft) Asphalt Elevation AMSL10 ft / 3 m The actual commercial terminal area is set well away from the runways to the south (via taxiway C), with just one major terminal built in 2001and enlarged to it's present status during 2007 and 2013. It is impressive, but the terminal is stand only with 1 to 8 in front and 10 a remote stand opposite, the terminal has no airbridges and is walkon/walkoff. Terminal and modeling is again very impressive, detail is absolutely first rate with real (photographic) images used in the process... .... clutter is excellent with fully branded AAL vehicles, there are however no animated vehicles, but to be honest they are not really required here, glass and reflections are also very good and to a high standard. Apron linage is excellent on all stands, but stand 10 is currently sited wrong, it will be fixed. All carparks and landside are perfect as well. The hardest trick in doing great scenery is finding that balance on providing lot of good detail, without over doing the clutter... get that equation correct and you get perfection... just like it is here, as AAL is just the perfect balance. Internal terminal detailing is very good as well... it is not over detailed, detailed if you know what I mean... but there is enough to fill out the building for authenticity and you can walk around in here exploring. General Aviation South of the main apron are remnants of the original Aalborg airfield, a large hangar and two heritage buildings that have been repurposed as the airport's technical department and small cargo building, and the airport's ground equipment it has an authentic maintenance building as well. All buildings are exceptional in creating a very Danish character feel, and have very good detail and high detail components like signage and apron equipment (flags, cones, lines). There is a very nice GA parking area and a great refueling station, so Aalborg is a great destination for that weekend flyaway. Behind the main apron in the GA area is a private parking area with service hangars, it is very authentic to the area. Airport clutter as noted is very good, and located not just around the aprons. But in every area the quality is very high as well, and there are plenty of nice static aircraft placed as well with some Lear Jets, the quality detail of the aircraft is not as high as the rest of the detail, but they are more than passable. Landside there is the Aalborg Airport Hotel, and nicely rendered it is, note the lovely detail around the base.. it feels very authentic. To the west and south there are a lot of nice support buildings.... the far south was also part of the military aerodrome but is now segregated and fenced off... ... but a lone Danish Airforce Starfighter still stands guard. Mid-field AAL is the control tower. There are two, this one is the commercial tower, and the newer of the two. Built of brick it is very authentic and well represented. Tower view is not correct, it is by coordinate position, but not in height so you see the ground and Vidan noted it will be adjusted. Excellent centre field radar is animated, and I love dynamics like this, it looks great on arrival. Military Areas There are a few different military areas that are spread well out in the scenery, all are exceptional in the different time periods, but the overall feeling is the cold war era. There is still a large facility landside in front of the main terminal building, with nice facades supporting the hangars. This area is just mostly hangars and aircraft storage with no buildings. The main area of Aalborg Air Base is set out to the north of the runways. The Airbase covers a wide area, but it is all very well detailed, from open stands to mostly hangars that are "ready to fly" once you pull the doors back... detail is again excellent, and you can easily spend time and walk around the Airbase and find a lot of nice touches of realism. It reminds me a little of post-war Britain... parade grounds, barracks and every area has a different hangar style to reflect it's era, it would have been just to easy to do one style and duplicate it, so the high detail of AAL is really in here if you look for it or look around for it. Detail goes to not only the current hard surfaces, but the past now unused areas. The focus of this area is the Air Transport Wing Aalborg apron called the "Dolphin Apron" that is along side the long taxiway N... Two large and one lower wide hangars cover the area with another standalone hangar in front, all are guarded by two static Danish "Herky Birds" C-130s. Detail is again very good. Just east of the transport wing dolphin apron along Taxiway N is the second control tower, this is the original field tower and has been here since the Germans ran their Luftwaffe raids from the airfield... again the detail is simply excellent, and it is very WW2 era. Now far east along taxiway N is the Fire Station and command headquarters. Taxiway N is significant because it is your main taxiway pathway to either end of any departure or arrival runway, so most of these building are very visible when you arrive or depart. Note the flight ready hardstands, and the general feeling here is that at this facility of AAL can survive anything... even Armageddon. Ground textures are very good and widely varied. Stand wear is very good as well with oil stains and general hard use, pretty spring flowers are spotted set out amongst the grass verges but overall there isn't a lot of grass internal field coverage. Although HDR effects are noted, I couldn't find any wet surfaces... One thing that came through while reviewing AAL is that it can be a moody place, and that is in a good way. The North Sea creates very mystical weather, with mostly a lot of fog and seasonal showers.. and I got a lot of that here. Lighting I really like the lighting here, but the aprons are BRIGHT... you may think the candle power needs to come down a notch or two, but personally I like it as I like that transition on arrival or departure when you come out of the gloom and into the bright lights.... working on the stands, no problem. No needing the torches down here, the lighting also brings out those great terminal textures.... internal terminal lighting is also very good. Slightly odd thing on the terminal though is that landside it is only two-thirds lit? some carparks are slightly dark as well, maybe a different style of lighting to compliment the full on areas for the carparks is needed. Aalborg Hotel looks excellent with local advertising. Overall great. Dolphin Apron is also excellent with lovely down lighting, again a great lit workplace... most of the military areas are obviously dark. Only thing I didn't like were the control tower windows, they looked far too bright, but bland as well. The base main tower was pretty good, but the main controllers windows I didn't like at all.... they shouldn't be lit anyway or very dull. Runway approach lighting is excellent with animated RAIL on 08L/08R... overall the field lighting is very good. Services Plenty of services, although a lot are seasonal charters and LLCs, Interesting one is the Atlantic Air connection to Vágar and a good routing if you have Faroes Islands XP - Maps2XPlane Air Europa - Seasonal charter: Palma de Mallorca (begins 29 June 2019) Atlantic Airways - Seasonal: Vágar Bulgaria Air - Seasonal charter: Burgas (begins 1 July 2019) Corendon Airlines - Seasonal: Antalya Danish Air Transport - Seasonal: Bornholm, Antalya Great Dane Airlines - Dublin (begins 21 June 2019), Edinburgh (begins 24 June 2019), Nice (begins 26 June 2019- Seasonal charter: Palma de Mallorca (begins 17 June 2019), Rhodes ,Chania (begins 16 June 2019), Varna (begins 22 June 2019) Jet Time - Seasonal charter: Antalya, Chania, Gran Canaria, Larnaca, Mytilene (begins 26 June 2019), Palma de Mallorca, Rhodes, Naples, Ponta Delgada, KLM - Amsterdam Norwegian Air Shuttle - Copenhagen, Málaga - Seasonal: Gran Canaria, Palma de Mallorca, Alicante Ryanair - London–Stansted Scandinavian Airlines - Copenhagen, Oslo–Gardermoen - Seasonal charter: Chania SunExpress - Seasonal: Antalya Thomas Cook Airlines - Scandinavia - Seasonal charter: Gran Canaria, Palma de Mallorca, Tenerife-South, Phuket Vueling - Barcelona (ends 24 October 2019) WT3: WorldTraffic routes around AAL are a bit hit and miss. WT will generate the ground routes, but they are not highly refined, the complex runway and taxiway layout doesn't help out either and you will find that most aircraft will land on 08R/26L the smaller (width) of the two and not the main 08L/26R runway, and with this there is also a lot of popping aircraft that land and disappear and pop on to takeoff, if refined AAL would be excellent for WT3. What does work however works quite well and the terminal will fill and empty during the day. Summary For a first scenery debut for X-Plane11 from Vidan Design this is an extraordinary release. So much here is very well executed and designed, I loved the scenery from the moment I set my eyes on it... first releases are usually patchy, but not here. Full orthophoto scenery that blends in perfectly well with the default mesh, and great German autogen sets the scene. Terminal and buildings are all excellent with internal terminal areas, the scenery covers a lot of area with the large outlying military Airbase and Cold War response layouts, all are well done and detailed. In the object count it is very high, but not to the point of being too much, the balance on clutter with some nice static aircraft is about perfect, and with a lot of variations as well. Ground textures and lineage are also first rate as is most of the lighting. There are a few quirks that if attended to would bring the scenery up to exceptional status... WT3 - ATC refinement would bring out the full activity aspect the scenery requires, it is workable now, but it could be better, I don't like the control towers night lighting windows at all, but my only real gripe and the lighting for parts of the landside of the terminal it looks like it is missing and more fill is needed of the carpark lighting. Stand 10 siteing is wrong and two additions to be considered are HDR wet runways and maybe just a few animations. Outstanding, well yes AAL - Aalborg is great if a totally brilliant scenery straight out of the box, for a new developer coming into X-Plane this work is an outstanding achievement and AAL is simply great value as well... Yes I love it, will use it... a lot, and when I am flying now over Northern Europe and Jutland and pass through the AAL Nav-Aid, I now know there is more here now than just a marker in the sky, as there is a very nice welcome scenery on the ground as well... Highly Recommended. ______________________________________________________________________ Yes! EKYT - Aalborg XP by Vidan Design is now Available from the X-Plane.Org Store here : Aalborg XP - Denmark Price Is US$19.90 Features: Highly detailed rendition of Aalborg Airport (EKYT, AAL) and Aalborg Air Base (Flyvestation Aalborg) Highly detailed airport terminal Realistic HD textures created from on-site photography Dynamic apron lightning (requires X-Plane Visual Effects set to High (HDR)) Custom modelled ground support vehicles Orthophoto scenery High quality modelled airport buildings Static airplanes featuring types unique to the airport Custom modelled vegetation, grass, trees Requirements: X-Plane 11 Windows, Mac or Linux 4GB VRAM Minimum - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended Download Size: 275MB Current and Review Version : 1.0 (June 17th 2019) Installation Download scenery file size is download 287.40mb and with the full single folder installation is installed in your custom scenery folder of 763.20mb Documents Aalborg XP Manual (English) ______________________________________________________________________ Review by Stephen Dutton 20th June 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 860 1Tb SSD Software: - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.30 Addons: Saitek x52 Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose Soundlink Mini Plugins: Environment Engine by xEnviro v1.10 US$69.90 : JARDesign Ground Handling Deluxe plugin : US$19.95 : WorldTraffic 3.0 Plugin - US$29.95 : BetterPushBack - Free Scenery or Aircraft - Embraer ERJ Family by X-Crafts (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$89.95