The gateway sceneries have had, and will keep having a central role in the history of X-Plane, but after all this time, are they still so necessary and appreciated?
This may not be a common question, because we are now used to purchasing or downloading the scenery we need for our flight.
It’s plenty of site and forums in which there is a lot of choice of resources and it’s fairly difficult to find some airports not developed yet.
But the so called gateway sceneries were a milestone of the “plausible world” that Austin developed back in the past.
Without much experience even a newbie could create a simple and a likely scenery, that might have been distributed through the official gateway service of X-Plane.
The biggest and most important airports all over the world are available directly in the latest updates of X-Plane in that “Global scenery” directory in the huge “Custom Scenery” folder.
That is a much hated directory, because if you forget to delete it after every update you will see an ugly scenery under your pay ware quality one, and in the most of cases that generates a very annoying flickering textures effect.
Let’s tell the truth, not pleasant at all.
And even if the users who take advantage of the possibility to use those sceneries are a few, Laminar Research keeps developing new sceneries, to keep the world coverage growing.
I admire the effort to give a simulator that is enjoyable even without add-ons, but while we are at the 11th version of the application, we still have sceneries that are from the 9th version, speaking about quality and technology applied.
At this point it’s time to offer a solution to this discussion.
And the great thing is that I don’t have one.
Because the gateway sceneries are no more useful or so appreciated, but are still an important part of our simulator.
Indeed, if you think about it, there are still some airports, or there were in a very recent past, in which we can have tridimensional buildings only thank to the gateway service: Perhaps Tirana, until June 2018.
Until the release of the scenery by “tdg” – the famous developer that took advantage of the lego-brick technique and managed to “develop” a lot of plausible sceneries basing on various libraries. Something like gateway sceneries, a bit more advanced, slightly heavier – on x-plane.org, Tirana didn’t exist in X-Plane if not for a default scenery with some buildings available on the gateway website. A pity, don’t you think?
At the end I think that the development of new gateway sceneries, whereas more advanced freeware sceneries for the same airports are easily reachable, it’s a waste of energy (and money, maybe?) that might be involved in other areas.
I know it’s difficult to delete such a part of X-Plane, but the English people managed to tear down the Wembley Stadium…