Microsoft's new KATL vs Official Payware KATL

Hi there! I bought the payware KATL and it was pretty great! I know Microsoft released their own version of the handcrafted KATL. The package size is similar (with Microsoft version actually slightly larger than the payware one)… Does anyone have any comparisons? I don’t have the MS version enabled right now to look at but was wondering what you all think (especially those who have seen the payware version)… I gotta figure out which one I am sticking with. :wink:

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I’ve looked at both. I’m not a fan of the ImagineSim version; I think that it was pretty low quality for the price. It is not on the same level as similar products from Fsdreamteam or FlightBeam–both of which offer much better mega-airport scenery add-ons at a lower price. The ImagineSim version is still better than the Asobo version, so if you have already bought it, then you might as well stick with it.

OK… My only gripe with ImagineSim version was a couple of taxiways towards the parking area had some super-rough bumps - close to crash-worthy ones. But other than that I was happy. What about the Asobo version doesn’t measure up to the ImagineSim one? And yes, I know FSDT and FB put out great stuff - unfortunately this was the only payware available in the Marketplace. Also, wonder why the package size is so similar with the two versions.

Externally, I think ImagineSim did a reasonable job modelling buildings. My gripes are the low resolution textures and the lack of internal modelling. I want to be able to see inside the concourses when I pull up to the gate. Still, the ImagineSim buildings generally seem to be truer to life than Asobo’s. The main terminal with the arch-like structures over the road is well done and the colored night lighting is great. Asobo didn’t do a good job with that at all. OTOH, Asobo did a better job with the other terminal entrance. I’d also imagine that Asobo didn’t get the parking right, although I didn’t confirm. Neither did a good job with the airport environment. The gate areas are too bare. I just did a pretty cursory glance at the Asobo version though. I wouldn’t say that the ImagineSim version is hugely better than the Asobo version, which I find frustrating given the price.

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Thank you for the details! I thought some surroundings were cool. The Mariott or whatever ugly 70s hotel there is (seen it in real life many times when flying through KATL) was very cool. :wink:

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my choich is the handcrafted KATL it’s more up to date, just wish it looked used, its too clean.

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The Asobo one?

I bought the ImagineSim scenery when it first released. If I knew Asobo was working on a handcrafted version of KATL, I would have waited. The ImagineSim scenery was better than the original default KATL but when compared to the handcrafted version, it’s honestly not worth the purchase at this point. It resembles a ported version of FS9/FSX when you compare it to the handcrafted version. The level of detail in the handcrafted version is superior. The taxiway/runway textures, roads, ground textures, the control tower and most buildings etc.

The handcrafted version did a much better job matching the change in elevation throughout the airport.In the ImagineSim version, the area around runway 26L and taxiway Echo (near the Fly Delta Jets hangar) is way too flat. In real life the runway elevation is much more pronounced, almost giving it the appearance of being on a raised plateau when compared to the elevation and surrounding roads (Perry J Hudson Parkway) just east of runway 26L. The same issue is found in the area around taxiway Echo near the Fly Delta Jets hangar. In real life the elevation difference is much more pronounced and lower than taxiway Echo.

The payware scenery does a good job on the terminal buildings and the gate textures look used, worn and more realistic. However, the taxiways in the handcrafted version overall throughout the airport resemble their correct color in real life. The taxiway textures near the threshold of runway 27R are spot on in the handcrafted version.

Runway 10/28 sits on a plateau in real life. The payware scenery doesn’t do a good job replicating this. It looks flat when compared to Forrest Parkway and Riverdale Road that goes around runway 10/28. The handcrafted version captures this better.

In the payware version, the ground and road textures around the airport look blurry and resemble FS9 quality graphics. They aren’t nearly as detailed.

The control tower in the handcrafted version is much more detailed. At night you can see the light illumination from the base of the control tower. This feature is absent in the payware version. On the North side of the airport the handcrafted version blows away the ImagineSim version. Much more detailed on the scenery including the Delta Flight Museum.

Overall, the payware version was worth the purchase initially when compared to the default KATL on release date, but when compared to the new handcrafted version, it’s not worth the purchase.

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Wow, it’s striking how much the Asobo version is better. I wonder if Gaya developed it.

I bought the ImagineSim version literally a day before the Asobo one came out, knowing fully that KATL will be improved. What a waste of $20 that was. Oh well, you live, you learn. Knowing U.K. is coming, I will probably hold off buying airports for it until they announce which ones will be handcrafted this time…

I guess my consolation is that I spent what I would on a decent glass of wine, so no massive loss.

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Yes Gaya Simulations announced that they developed KATL, Friday Harbor and all the POIs for the world update.

And Gaya’s version is a lot better than Imaginesim and the best part is we are getting it for free!

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Indeed; I do wonder if Imaginesim will be at least taking the effort to revamp their scenery, or if they decided it’s not worth the effort.

Both have drawbacks that the other seems to address in some way, but right now the hand crafted one is in the lead with Imaginesim not commenting on what they’ll do to bridge the gap.

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I would say that ImagineSim needs to do something both to restore credibility to their brand, but also to salvage what work they did put into KATL–because as it stands, nobody else is going to buy it. To make their version of KATL worth the $20.00 pricetag, they need to do several things (all of which have been established by other vendors as what can be reasonably expected at the $20.00 price point). First, they need to add considerable interior modelling to the terminals so that when you pull up to the gate, you can see in (as well as providing fodder for drone exploration). This includes adding some people. Second, they need to add more ramp clutter and more cars in the parking lots. Third, they need to add some modelling in downtown Atlanta. Fourth, they need to bring the airport topography in line with reality. Finally, they need to fix the entrance in the second terminal; they did fix the floating cars but the supports for the awning are still floating. Doing those five things would go a long way towards restoring their image. Right now their airport just seems lifeless and non-immersive. More importantly, their product feels like a cash grab that is leaving their customers feeling ripped off.

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Yea finally able to reinstall and fly MSFS. I noticed after installing the hand crafted KATL some buildings seem to be missing this time. Namely The Delta Hanger 1 / museum and corporate offices. Anyone else notice this? Any help greatly appreciated.