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Creating Scenery in FSX

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#1 NightCargo


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Posted 31 January 2009 - 09:52 AM

This tutorial will allow you to create scenery for FSX. You may want to add trees or buildings to a favourite airport or add animals to the plains of africa; the possibilities are endless.

It requires the Object Placement Tool which is part of the FSX SDK that can be downloaded from this address "http://www.fsdeveloper.com/wiki/index.php?title=SDK_Installation_(FSX)" or is on the actual game disk in some cases. As it says on the page, it is essential to download or install the correct version of the SDK to avoid hours of frustration with it not working. There are plenty of tutorials on the internet to help you install and troubleshoot (if neccessary) the SDK.

To create your scenery, follow these steps:

- Install SDK (correct version)

- Load a flight in the area you want to create scenery in.

- Click Tools/ Object Placement Tool

- Create your scenery with Object Placement Tool
      - There are plenty of tutorials on the internet to help you use this tool and to create scenery objects.

      - The basic idea is quite simple though, just click the "Objects" tab, click "Add", choose which object to add from the "Scenery" drop down menu, then click "Add" to place the object in the world.

      - The objects are placed by the green crosshairs on the screen - if you cannot see these you need to move the Object Placement Tool box by clicking and dragging it (you can only move this box though if MSFS is in windowed mode - press Alt + Enter to do this).

      - Your aircraft is basically in slew mode when the Object Placement Tool is open and you can move the hat switch on your joystick to aim the green crosshairs.

      - The tool will give a preview of what the object looks like before you actually add it, so have a look at the different objects you can place as there are thousands.

      - Once the object is actually placed in the world, you can alter its properties by selecting it (either from the "Objects" list or by clicking on it in the world) and changing the parameters in the box below.

- Once you have finished, click Save Scenery (in the "Mission" tab) and save it as "World.xml" in folder C:/Program Files/Microsoft Games/Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK/SDK/Environment Kit/BGL Compiler SDK. (It will automatically save it as an .XML file)

- Click Cancel to close the Object Placement Tool, and "Exit without Save".

- Close the Flight Simulator

- Go to the folder you saved the scenery in (it should be in C:/Program Files/Microsoft Games/Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK/SDK/Environment Kit/BGL Compiler SDK) Click and drag your "World.xml" file onto "bglcomp.exe" to create a BGL file that FSX can use. A new .BGL file should appear in the folder with the name "World.BGL". If it does not create a .BGL file, you need to make sure you have saved it as a Scenery, not a Mission in the Object Placement Tool.

- Move new "World.BGL" file into "C:/Program Files/Microsoft Games/FSX/Scenery/World/Scenery". Now, restart the flight simulator and it should have a few loading screens saying "Compiling new scenery database" or something like that. This shows your new scenery is being added to the world.

- Now, your scenery should appear in the Flight Simulator world.

To edit your scenery or create more scenery, open the Object Placement Tool and click "Load Scenery". Load your "World.XML" file that you created last time (it should be in the FSX SDK/SDK/Envirment Kit/bglCompiler folder). Now go and edit or create your scenery using the Object Placement Tool. Once you have finished, click "Save Scenery" and save it as "World2.XML" in the same folder. Make sure you save it with a different name otherwise the bglcompiler doesn't work. Then, repeat the instructions for creating the scenery (i.e. dragging it onto bglcompiler.exe to create a BGL file etc.). Delete your previous "World.BGL" file in FSX/Scenery and replace it with the new one.

Have fun and i hope you enjoy it...