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PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 7:35 pm 

Joined: Mon Nov 17, 2008 1:37 pm
Posts: 18
Hey folks,
I've been out of simming for a bit and can't believe how good tomorrow looks for simming. Today for that matter is a quantum leap over what it was a short time ago when I stopped. I just got sick of the out of memory crap ending my flight rather than pulling out my mixture lever...

I'm sure most of you have heard about how great virtual reality is in p3d, but so did I and just cannot believe how much better it is than I ever thought when imagining it. It truly is a major game changer and even though I simmed for years with Track IR, I could never have seen how perfect the A2A C172 is modeled/crafted. No video comes close since it is then 2D and even something more 3D feeling, like Track IR and the great views it helps show in video, is still 2D. I've read hours of reviews and comments on VR in p3d and all fell way short and this will as well.

I will still try to put it in words or examples. Take for instance the Kollsman window on the altimeter (where it shows barometric). You lean in and suddenly see its depth. It's layers. You clearly see the separation from each instrument and it's dials, arms. The decals on glass even blew me away because unlike the TIR or monitor of any kind you don't get that sense of depth in knowing it is right there as you do in VR. Small details like it and your distance from it help with the big picture in flying and truly feeling like you're in the air. Many times I've looked left and lean over only to catch myself from falling. So intense that I had that chill run through me like the one you get when you narrowly avoid a car crash. Another factor is I can finally do as I've been told. For many years I've read articles or watch my PPL and IFR Sporty's videos, then tried to incorporate it into fs9, fsx, p3d. Never feeling like I did. Even with 6' of monitor in my face with triple screens going. For instance, when landing you should find a spot in the distance to focus on when you try for the softest of landings. Not only easy with VR, but it and many other things come automatically. Turning on a fixed point (looking down your wing, keeping a landmark on the tip) is easy to do with a monitor but you never feel if you're changing altitude. In VR you get the full correct feeling. Your peripheral vision tells you instantly if you're level, dropping or gaining altitude. Same thing with steep turns. One of my favorite videos is an instructor taking the wheel and without looking at the gauges and with a very laid back attitude, not to mention barely touching the yoke, performs a steep turn to the left and the right with using nothing more than the horizon and the view picture of the nose on it. Steep turns is my bigger concern in going for my ppl and only now can I see what this instructor is talking about. I thought I did before it, but it's just that full surrounding with peripheral vision that gives you that constant inertia feeling. Landing and so many other things are sooooo easy. Not that they were difficult, it's just the combined feeling of space, inertia and depth all at once rather than only going by visual cues.

The latest update to P3dv4.1 even made chaseplane work with the Oculus rift (I think it's still not with flyinside). The developer even was unaware of this until recent. Now I can change views and watch my flaps come down as a passenger would. Seeing it as if I were there. The pure size of everything in VR is awesome. Size meaning only now, with this depth, does the aircraft or surroundings seem to be actual size. I never knew this was an issue until being overwhelmed with seeing it for the first time.

Here's one more. If all you do is sim, and have never actually sat in a C172, then you'll be led to believe it is spacious. It is a very tight fit and again, not until VR have I felt this to be remotely close to being accurate. It's perfectly accurate now.

I wish I were rich because I would buy it for everyone, just to see what I mean. Not only to experience VR, but to see the A2A C172's perfect 3D modeling.

Finally we have a 64 bit sim with greater things to look forward to. For now I look forward to a smart A2A listener of sorts. One that can see where I'm looking and monitor Oculus touch so it can tell that I did what preflight checks I have.
P3d's avatar mode + A2A + VR is so incredible I laugh every time in amazement. Simply set a key or button to switching to avatar mode and enjoy a walk around the exterior of your aircraft or walk over and watch your heavy get fueled, de-iced, or loaded. VR is now only a fraction of the cost that it was and once you experience it you too will feel like someone just gave you thousands of dollars in free software. Your investment finally shows you just how much it was worth it. You'll see everything as if it were new and start doing things you might not have before. Just don't try and talk to the other avatars. They may lower your self esteem ;)

Had someone been able to put it into words better would have made me get it much sooner. I didn't do it justice either, in fact, the best explanation most people have said is; "There's no way to describe it".

If you have it, take a shot at putting it into words. I'm sure it will help answer some curiosities and I'd enjoy your take on it.

Quick note on Flyinside. Everyone that VR's seems to love it, but me. I'm sure I will in time but it actually ruins my experience at the moment. I'm still very new to it but it stops chaseplane and I need to read more why people prefer it. Maybe it was before p3dv4.1 but regular flight and choosing Enable virtual reality to me is fine (though lacks touch support, Flyinside's touch support isn't that great at the moment either).

For those VR folks that can give me any pointers as well would be great, like must reads, must do's, etc. One question that comes to mind is a recorder that shows it more how you in VR see it. I found "D3D Gear" which does record by combining the two views, but still looking into it.

My Old setup (2007):


My new one:


PS. If you have Oculus, or when you get it, be sure to download "Rapid Fire; A brief history of flight". It's free and it's mind blowing. Only negative comment is it's so short, but it places you on a runway and gives you a history lesson in aviation as the aircraft being talked about buzz by you. My favorite part is seeing that beautiful Concord do a flyby at full speed, wow! Be sure to watch with your ceiling fan on high!!! :shock:

PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:28 pm 
Senior Airman

Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 11:11 pm
Posts: 108
Nice write-up. What it comes down to is that you just can't describe it, you cant5take a screen shot of it, you have to experience it. My A2A aircraft are making some of my best vr experiences so far. I went the HTC Vive route and will be upgrading as soon as the pro becomes avaiable. I have three gorgeous 27 inch Samsung monitors with track ir and as great as that setup is, I can't go back to 2d after flying vr.7


PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:03 am 
A2A Lieutenant Colonel
User avatar

Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2004 11:22 pm
Posts: 26972
Location: Beccles, Suffolk, UK
Agreed LouP,

My HTC Vive has changed my gaming so much, whilst I will still use monitor sometimes for pancake vision (New term we have in the team for non VR lol) if I am flying light GA then for sure its in VR. VR is also amazing for car sims, racing is a must have imo, its simply stunning racing in VR. And with the Vives room scale, I also now have an exercise device as most the room scale standing up games can give you a great workout as you play, esp the pong/squash boxercise ones. Plus theres some cracking shooting ones and for relaxing a game of pool in SportsBarVR is good for a laugh. Just remember though the table isnt actually there so dont lean on it :oops: :oops:

It just cannot be described in words, photos or videos. Which is a shame, but if you get a chance to try VR gaming then you need to give it a go, and to think we are still on generation 1 then its amazing to think what my children might have by the time they are my age :shock: :shock:


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 5:52 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 11:30 am
Posts: 17
Location: KORH
Great post - thanks! I just got my rift a few weeks ago and it's transformed simming for me. If you like combat, be sure to check out the IL2-BoS/M/K series too - great VR experience.

EDIT - thanks for pointing out "Rapid Fire" - I hadn't seen that and I'm downloading now!

I7-7700k@4.7ghz, 32gb RAM, EVGA GTX1080 w/8GB vram, Win10, Rift, mostly P3Dv4.2

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