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Thread: Come & give homage to the Flight Unlimited series!

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered: May 2000
    Location: North of the equator.

    Come & give homage to the Flight Unlimited series!

    Well it's about time TTLG got this forum.

    So just how many flight sim fans are there at TTLG?

    I bought Flight Unlimited 1, 2, 3 a while ago & I actually enjoy it.

    So if you even liked the Flight Unlimited series in even the smallest way... speak up! If you have a small place in you heart for this series... then sing your praises loud & proud people.

    Please come & give proper homage to the best flight sim series there ever was!



    [ June 03, 2001: Message edited by: Nedan ]

  2. #2
    New Member
    Registered: Jun 2001
    Location: Greenville, SC

    I got Flight Unlimited 2 several years ago. The graphics were pretty good then. The only thing that sucked was the fact that you could only fly around the San Francisco Bay area. You couldn't go anywhere else. Other than that, the game was good. Especially the fantastic implementation of realistic ATC's. All of the Flight Sims before and since have yet to improve on that.

  3. #3

    I've been a fan of flight sims for a long time (I just love the whole idea of flying, basically!), and while I only otherwise fly combat sims, it was fairly inevitable that I ended up with Looking Glass' entries in the genre...

    (I also prefer props (also helicopters and early jets) to ultra-modern flighters, so "Flight Combat: Thunder Over Europe" was going to be an absolute must-buy :/ )

    As with their (on-foot) first-person games, Looking Glass broke new ground with their flight-sim line. The original Flight Unlimited featured both the most realistic physics (courtesy of Seamus Blackley), and the first photo-realistic terrain ever in a PC sim.

    The "Oh my god" factor of looking at the box screen-shots for Flight 1, and seeing those landscapes, was tremendous. I can only imagine that contributed nicely to the reportedly excellent sales of the sim.

    Flight Unlimited also featured a smooth virtual cockpit, flight recording and replay, extensive training features, and a high-end 1024x768 resolution that no machine of the time could possibly handle (meaning that, comparatively low-res textures aside, it still looks pretty good even today.) Basically, Flight 1 was ground-breaking stuff in pretty much all regards.

    The sequel wasn't really a sequel in anything but title (and as the name itself came from the "Unlimited" aerobatic class, and Flight 2 was not an aerobatic sim, even that relationship seemed odd! But capitalising on the brand name was presumably a sound move.)

    Instead Looking Glass moved into the territory of civilian flight sims, and once again created something special... by focusing in detail on a single small area the graphics (again) blew away all of the competition. (With the obvious trade-off, but plenty of people were just fine with that.) The magazine adverts for Flight 2 featured a screen comparison with Mircosoft's Flight Simulator (v6, IIRC), which showed the product off nicely

    The terrain structure and textures were taken directly from actual data and photographs of the region; no previous flight sim had ever presented an area in such exacting detail. Furthermore, the Flight 2 graphics engine increased the immersion by doing away with the dreaded distance fade-out; instead rendering all the way to the horizon by reducing the level of detail in the distance. (It still amazes me how many modern flight sims still have everything unrealistically fade into nothingness when it can't handle drawing any further.)

    Seamus Blackley had left Looking Glass to create Trespasser, so the physics modelling was a little more traditional I believe (though still very good), but the sim brought several other new things to the table, such as impressive weather modelling and effects and a full-featured (if perhaps slightly simplified) Air Traffic Control system. The five planes featured were all props, and included a sea-plane so you could conquer both sea and air together!

    Flight Unlimited 3 was a true sequel to Flight 2, extending and improving the sim. This time Seattle was the area modelled (in even higher detail than Flight 2's San Francisco). In a nice move, the scenery from Flight 2 could also be installed, and the area between Seattle and San Francisco was modelled (in lower detail, naturally) making it possible to fly between the two areas. Undoubtedly futher releases in the series would have extended the map further.

    Naturally the ATC and weather were also improved, all-new adventures (now "challenges") were provided (along with an editor for creating new ones), and several new aeroplanes were available, including the return of a motorised glider (seen in Flight 1), and the BeechJet 400A (the series' first jet.)

    Well, that's a very brief overview of the series, with only a couple of glaces at the Flight 2 & 3 manuals All three released sims (and reportedly the sadly unreleased Flight Combat) were very worthy of the Looking Glass label. And if you live in San Francisco or Seattle, go out and grab a copy of Flight 2 or 3 -- you'll probably be able to spot your house

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2001
    why did you have to go out of bussines Looking Glass? i would have sacrificed Ion, Valve, Blizzard, and westwood just to keep you alive!

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