Since the release of EZ-Scenery I have seen quite a few discussion of people who asked if they could convert a Rwy12 library into a library for EZ-Scenery. Or I read about other people who started to decompile object libraries, so that they could create a EZ-Scenery library using the supplied library manager.
I find this a worrying development. EZ-Scenery is a wonderful tool, that allows someone who is not a hardcore scenery designer to place a few objects on his local airport very easily. But when those people start to decompile other libraries, it is very easy to create a complete chaos. Without knowing it, you could easily end up with the same object getting a lot of different GUIDs. You might even have the distribute different libraries with the same objects, because you chose the from library. This is certainly not the point of an object library. So therefore I want to make a few things about a library very clear:
- An object library is an object library. There is not something like an EZ-Scenery library and a Rwy12 library. They are all the same. The only difference is that there are object libraries in the pre-Fs2004 format and in the Fs2004 (XML) format. But most modern programs (like Rwy12, EZ-Scenery, ObPlacer XML) use the Fs2004 format.
- The purpose of an object library is that you have a collection of scenery objects, that can be used by any scenery. Just make sure that the user has all the required libraries installed.
- Although it is very easy to extract a MDL object from a library and use them again in a different one, this is not something to encourage. Most scenery designers will see this as violating their copyright! So just ask your end users to install the same libraries you have installed and don’t start stealing stuff.
I know there are some differences in how the different placement tool use the object library. EZ-Scenery for example reads your scenery library and shows you all object libraries that are available. Rwy12 requires a special XML file that specifies which objects are available, while ObPlacer XML uses the XML source used when the library was created. But in the end they are all able to use the same object library. I really hope that we will see more general object libraries in the future, instead of libraries for Rwy12 or EZ-Scenery. It is time that people start to see they are all the same…