Armed to the Teeth: XLoad!


Adding to the add-on: Captain Sim‘s XLoad gives you guns, lots of guns.

The boys at Captain Sim have put the new Carrier-Op capabilities of the Acceleration pack to good use, and have come up overnight with the first add-on to the add-on: a two-seater Boeing FA-18D! Perhaps feeling that it wasn’t enough, they’ve included an F-117A Nighthawk too. And both are, you guessed it, fully aircraft-carrier operational.

I’ve been witching in this article about the lack of weapons in the new Hornet, and now the good Captain has taken care of that. Talk to my Sparrow, Jack! And thus one of the coolest aspects of the package is the interactive Load Control Panel, in which you select what goes where, to see it immediately loaded and affecting your center of gravity on the spot. Wow. There’s also 2D-screens to control all the animations and also the new aircraft carrier features, if you can’t be bothered to remember the extra keystrokes. They have also included ten new missions to practice Carrier-Ops with these new aircraft. Things happen fast at 800ft and 250 KIAS, especially when the runway is, uh, running away from you. And rocking. And bobbing.

The offered liveries are superb: Canadian (Tiger Meet) Swiss, Finnish (hurray!) and Kuwait Air Forces. You won’t find anything new in the virtual cockpit, though, because these aircraft simply re-use the original Acceleration FA-18’s. Although you may seem fully loaded in the external model, you won’t see anything hanging from your wings in the VC. This aspect becomes more obvious when you fly the other included aircraft, a carrier-capable (a concept plane which apparently never got made) F-117 Nighthawk, which also uses the FA-18’s VC. Whenever you look to the sides you will see… the FA-18’s wings. Great external model though, and of course you can hook down. Call the ball!

The FA-18D is essentially what came with the Acceleration pack, modified to become a two-seater, but also featuring a lot of neat animations and special effects (wings fold, engine nozzles fluctuate according to power, radome opens) and the sight of the pylons loaded to the brim with ordnance is very gratifying. Now we only need someone to come up with FSX: Air Combat!

EDIT: LOL, and they did!


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