Question, and a suggestion.
I'm looking at the repaints available and notice a bunch of special livery planes that are missing, or appear to be at the very least. Are there plans in place to increase the liveries available for the end-user? I "feel" that the amount of missing liveries is far too big for a product at this price. And will fully admit that is subjective.
Now a couple quick suggestions. I'm not sure, but if you're replacing missing liveries (ie the new BAW anniversary ones or the ANA star wars) with white livery planes, consider instead using the normal livery, that at least is a step up from plain white.
It would be helpful to have a way to change who parks where that doesn't involve WED. Not all airports are correctly marked in WED, nor will they always be correct if an airline moves gates, etc. And if you get a situation where multiple airlines use the gates thats a lot of codes to enter.
Many thanks for your feedback.
A few very good points here. Firstly, the number of included liveries is what's significant.
With this whole 'missing liveries' situation we're a bit "damned if you do...". We used to have our AI traffic programs ignore missing liveries and simply have a database of flights for the planes available. Adding new planes or liveries meant you also needed to create a new flight.
Solution... let the software use every flight in the database and, if there is an aircraft model available but no livery, give the users the chance to see those planes. If users want to make their own repaints (as we did for Traffic 2005) they can use them without having to make a flightplan. The instructions are in the manual, but, basically, you paint the aircraft, add it back to the library and next time you run with TG set to show only liveried aircraft, your aircraft is there - assuming the flight exists, of course. However, if you don't want to bother with repaints (and most don't) the default batch of liveries is fine for the majority of users and generates plenty of traffic.
Unfortunately, running the program with 'show missings' will generate plenty of white planes and the suggestion that we haven't finished it or there is something broken. Not sure what the solution is to that. Painting every flight in a comprehensive world flight database would not be commercially viable for Laminar or Microsoft, let alone us.
Now, there are 800+ liveries included in the program and, together with the included aircraft types, that produces a huge amount of traffic - this should be more than enough for most users. For the price, the level of traffic is excellent - remember, this is the price of a couple of airports or a US-state of scenery. Workload-wise, it's significantly more complex and represents a lot more work than the aforementioned airports.
The choice of which airlines to include is based on the number of flights they make and the region involved. We will certainly look to adding some more liveries and updating a couple alongside a future update, but, for the moment, the content is, we think, very good.
Parking - unfortunately, it's not possible for our code to amend someone else's unless we know what to change and that would mean knowing what parking is set up at every add-on. Also, there is at least one group of airports around that make this task very hard even to do manually.
Many thanks again for your thoughts. We are keen to get as much feedback as possible - good or bad.
The thing is with the missing liveries, is who, and what you're missing. For example, you're missing numerous 763's according to your list. UAL, ANA, ACA, pop out to me, and they're not the only ones. just those four are over 113 flights. Right now they're 171 B763's in the air according to Flightaware. I get you can't do each and every livery nor do I expect that in any way, but missing something like a mainline UAL 767? I'm sorry but it's confounding me that you'd consider that "ok."
For the parking, let me try to explain better. In World Traffic it generated files for each airport/parking position that listed several things one of which was the ICAO code of the Airline(s) that use that gate. Using an in sim tool we could alter/add to that list. I'm not asking you to try to alter wed, as you said that's not possible. Something similar to the above, which would allow the end-user to override that data would great.
As for the value of the product, for my personal case, it's a bit overpriced. But! I do think you can make it worth it definitely.
Missing cargo for me is what makes it that way, not having Cargo flights, at places where they're prominent is just odd, I'd hate to see what KMEM looks like without it.
UAL - is that United? If so, if the correct 767 is included and the livery and the flight then it should show. There are United liveries in the pack. If that flight is coming up as a white plane then it's something we can investigate - there may be a reason. However, if that flight's not there, then it's not in the database and that's a different matter.
Parking - what you describe might be feasible, but would be difficult for the program to handle that level of organisation on the fly. As it is, I think it looks for a free gate.
cargo - something we are looking at. GA is probably going to be the next thing to add (after Mac compatibility).
Yes sorry UAL is United. In my case, I have no 763 paint for United at all. If it should be present, then something went sideways in my install. The list that the plugin generated is quite long, over 800 entries in fact. To give you a further idea of why I'm concerned Aer Lingus, has the following missing aircraft 733, AR8, AT4, 332, and finally the AT7. Another example is Singapore Airlines with the following missing. 320, 333, 74Y, 788, and 388. If my brain is remembering right the 74Y is their cargo planes.
On the parking. In WT, the list is generated when the user generates ground routes for the airport. From that point on ideally, the user only has to edit individual entries. So with that concept in mind. Have it where it makes the list once, then if needed the end-user can edit. Then it doesn't need to consider it on the fly other than to say ok Plane A wants to park, Gate E4 is open, who parks at E4? My list says plane A. Send plane A to E4. If by chance Plane A doesn't, then it could search for a list of "free" gates, In WT most of us created a handful or so of gates at large airports with no airlines assigned to allow for that fallback. This would allow for end-users to customize their set up on an as-needed basis if it's even needed at all.
If I can be a tad blunt for a moment, Cargo, and GA isn't something you should be considering, at this price point, it should be in the program. As you said, this is an expensive program and as such should be fairly complete from the start, not one where you "consider" implementing integral parts of the aviation world as an afterthought.
Edit to add in the parking thought
@Admiralty-013 OK - got a better idea of what you are saying. Sorry - this is why we never try and do support via forums. It is a nightmare in terms of getting the wrong end of the stick.
It may be that there is no United 763 livery - this could be because of the flights frequency 'logic' that we use to decide what to repaint and what not. Plus, the decision on what liveries to use was made some time ago and airlines may update or change what's used.
GA and cargo use different logic to airliners, so it makes sense to add those in. It's what we have done in the past. However, we won't be charging for these (as we have done in the past).
Fully understand on the parking stuff, I can if needed take it to a support ticket to make your life easier If so let me know.
@Admiralty-013 I will find out about that specific one and it may answer other questions.