Precision Manuals Development Group (PMDG) today unveiled the new PMDG Express product brand for Microsoft Flight Simulator 2002 and Flight Simulator 2004: Century of Flight. Designed to be attractive to flight simulator users who are interested in a less study-intensive simulation experiences, PMDG Express products marry highly detailed visual models with realistic flight dynamics and a comprehensive cockpit environment without also requiring the user to study for an ATP exam.
"As PMDG's main product line has become more sophisticated, we have heard from many customers that it would be nice to also have airplanes available for casual flying," said Robert S. Randazzo, PMDG's Executive Director. "Customers have told us that they would like to see a line of PMDG aircraft that are inexpensive, share the visual and flight model quality that PMDG is known for, and not require advanced knowledge or airmanship skills in order to conduct an enjoyable flight."
With these concepts in mind, the PMDG Express product line is designed to maximize customer enjoyment by providing a realistic flight environment that is uncompromising in it's visual immersion and handling quality. Centered around highly detailed virtual cockpits, no effort is been spared to reproduce the look and feel of the airplane and the cockpit, while a mix of 2-Dimensional and Virtual Cockpit technologies are used to provide customers with an intuitive interface from which to truly enjoy the flying experience.
The first PMDG Express product to be introduced is the PMDG B1900 Express, PMDG's rendition of the popular 19 passenger turboprop commuter.
"If you've flown the default Microsoft King Air you are going to be blown away by the increase in detail and realism of this B1900," said Vin Scimone, aircraft modeler for PMDG and Project Leader for the first PMDG Express offering. "Users will immediately notice a similar look and feel, but will be amazed at the techniques we've been able to use to really put you 'in-the-cockpit' of this airplane. We've used our experience with the 737 to create a new level of detail and immersion with the Beech 1900. This is a fully interactive virtual cockpit with the right mix of detail and lighting to really bring the experience home. It's like being there."
The PMDG B1900 Express includes a finely detailed virtual cockpit and 2D panels designed using custom photography taken from within the B1900 airplane. The external model includes 120 moving parts for animation and realism, including more than sixty moving parts involved in the stairway animation alone! The PMDG B1900 Express is the first PMDG model to take full advantage of Part LODS (Levels of Detail) in order to maximize frame rates by increasing the complexity of the model during close in viewing, while smoothly reducing complexity and increasing frame rates at greater viewing distances.
The external model has been crafted to show fine detail in the shape and outline of the B1900 airplane. The model was then textured using photographs taken specifically for application to this model. The end result is a wonderful display of the subtle details of heat scalding, paint abrasion and operational wear that take place on the surface of the airplane in normal operation.
Flight and engine dynamics were designed using the same exacting process as employed in the PMDG 737, and result in stable, accurate and predictable flight dynamics within Microsoft Flight Simulator. Significant efforts were invested to improve the realism of the free-turbine engines used on the Beech 1900, and these improvements will result in a wonderfully well-behaved overall flight experience.
Further adding to product value, PMDG's livery artists are preparing dozens of liveries representing real world B1900 operators around the world. These liveries, as always, will be available to customers at no cost from PMDG's download center.
The PMDG B1900 Express is about to enter final product testing and will be available at a pricing point below $15 early in the first quarter of 2004. PMDG is also preparing final development of PMDG 737-800/900 series aircraft to compliment the award winning NEXT GENERATION product line, as well as the recently announced PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies due after the first quarter of 2004.
PMDG can be found at www.precisionmanuals.com