New Zealand TIN cities and watermasks

Being a native to New Zealand, and spending the majority of my sim time flying in the country, it has been fantastic to see the content contained within the latest world update. Not only have all the additional points of interest and TIN cities been added to the scenery, but the rest of the country benefits from updated satellite photorealistic ground textures which are several years ahead of the original ground textures we had!

I thought I’d make a summary thread showcasing some of the most scenic areas I’ve found thus far, as a starting point for other simmers to use for thier own exploring.

Firstly, Tauranga (pronouced Toe-Wronger) has probably benefited the most with the update, including new TIN coverage, watermasking for the harbour that is located on final approach, and lots of missing textures around Mt Maunganui, and the coastline that stretched east towards Whakatane has now all got full coverage from Bing.

Next the inland city of Hamilton, has extensive TIN coverage, including the new Waikato Expressway that only fully opened mid 2022:

Unfortunately the blending of the TIN coverage with the baseline Bing textures is less than subtle for both these areas:


Nelson at the top of the South Island has had the TIN treatment too (currently part of the city is not showing 3D structures due to a conflict with NZA’s Nelson scenery that they are aware of and patching shorty). The watermasking around the bay next to the airport is brilliant and makes all the difference when coming in on approach:

Across the Cook Straight, the captial Wellington is looks 100 times better than it did with Autogen, with the TIN recreation of the city centre looking its best with mainly low rise urban building when compared to past updates high rise skycraper cities looking rather disfigured from close range.

The TIN coverage extends quite far north, covering both the Hutt Valley and Pouriua, resulting in highly enhanced terrain all the way along the ILS/RNAV approaches for runway 16 into NZWN:

Unfortunatly the watermask blending around Mana Island is very jagged, and the blending with the ground textures at the far western side of the coverage area is less than subtle:


Great post with visuals. I didn’t realize how immersive the water masking is. Having the greatest detail at low level on approaches makes all the difference. The surrounding area of Queenstown looks great. The road going up to the Remarkables looks so much better and blends with the mountain.

Yes, the blending from TIN to bing is a bit of a shocker being noticeable. It also looks like this bing scenery was taken during a dry spell with the weather.

Hopefully, it gets fixed soon to complete what is otherwise a wonderful update.


Auckland, the countries biggest city has been done really well. Lots of large scale watermasks around the many bays and harbors which were my favorite feature of Orbx’s City pack that is temporarily not compatible with the world update. It’s great to be able to see and recognise many new construction sites/projects that are ongoing nearby which were missing from the sim up until now:

Again, a very stark difference between the TIN coverage area and Bing maps ground textures which is a shame. Lots of the marinas around the city are missing 3D boats too which is a pity- hopefully the Orbx Landmarks pack gets patched to compliment the area and we get the best of both world!

The World Update Skytower model doesn’t blend well with the surrounding TIN towers and a substandard quality level compared to the Orbx Landmarks model that included animated bungee jumpers and had a lot higher LOD.

For those wondering whether you can fly under the Auckland Harbour Bridge without crashing- the answer is yes!


Northland has lot a few watermarks with the Bing base textures being updated, but also gained some new ones too. The blending of these into the sea textures are a bit hit and miss- seamless in some areas and very jagged in others:

Whangarei Harbour

Bay of Islands

Whangaroa Harbour

Rangaunu Harbour

Manukau Harbour

Other large watermasks around the country that I believe have been included but are yet to be visited include the Coromandel, the Marlborough Sounds, Lake Tekapo & Lake Grassmere.


Checking out further new WU12 New Zealand watermasks:


Nearby Matarangi

Coromandel Town

Okiwi Station, Great Barrier Island

Port Fitzroy, Great Barrier Island (with some missing chunks)

Marlborough Sounds- probably the best and most extensive watermasking in the country. Screenshots are centered around Kenepuru Sound, nearby Picton Aerodrome (NZPN)