As you might already have read on Nicks blog, we are been playing a bit with the Object Placement Tool that comes with the FsX SDK. While this tool has probably been designed with missions in mind primarily, I think it can become a few powerful and useful tool for scenery designers as well.
The fact that you can place and move your objects from within FsX and that you can just move them around and see the effects instantly makes this a dream for every scenery designer as well. And when you have your own custom object library loaded, you are also able to place objects from them. In the screenshot below you can see how I placed three objects from one of my libraries (this was still a Fs2004 object library, so therefore some polygons show as black).
From within the object placement tool you can save your scenery. This is done as a BGLComp XML file. So if you compile that XML file you will get a BGL to make the placement of your objects permanent.
All these features are very similar to the EZ-Scenery tool of course. But the fact that you get this included with FsX now is great I think. And besides that the ability to move, scale and rotate your objects with the mouse as well makes it quite easy to use (I don’t think EZ-Scenery can do that, but to be honest I have not used EZ-Scenery that much so I could be wrong).
At the moment the mission object placement tool also has some problems. For example when I load in my objects again after placing them, I do not always see them. In those cases I only see the bounding boxes. And besides that the GUI could be made a little more user friendly as well. Finding objects is quite hard now for example, due to the huge amount of object available to be placed.
But I like the concept of this tool that much, that I don’t know if I am going to update ObPlacer XML for FsX. And if I do, I guess it would be a much better idea to write it in the same form as the mission object placement tool, so as a plugin that runs in FsX.