Orbx Cityscape Sydney vs World Update 7

With World Update 7 concentrating on Australia, does anyone have any idea if it would negate the need for Orbx’s Cityscape Sydney? It seems like it could make the Orbx scenery redundant. I realize that this will become more clear on release of the update, but was hoping someone might have some insider knowledge of the World Update and the Orbx scenery. Also hoping that, since Orbx is involved in both efforts, they are ensuring that there are no conflicts, at a minimum, and perhaps a nice synergy with both installed.

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Curious about this too, along with the other cityscapes in AU.

I think that’s TBD. The odds are pretty good that the answer is yes, the WU will contain the same assets that the Orbx pack adds. The same thing happened with their Frankfurt package, and they pulled it from sale. I think, though, that they said they plan to rework the Frankfurt pack to add more things that aren’t in the WU and push it out as a free upgrade to owners. (And presumably put the new package back on sale.) They may do something similar with Sydney.

Sorry, but I don’t really understand what you are talking about?
The Orbx city packs are addons with hand-crafted 3D models, while WUs normally contain additional photogrammetry cities. When I go to Frankfurt I only see photogrammetry. No 3D models.

Also Orbx didn’t pull the Frankfurt package. It is still available. And why wouldn’t it be? Like Orbx’s Paris and London packages or Sam Scene’s New York package it replaces photogrammetry buildings with ones that were modelled by hand.

I never fly in Australia, so I don’t know if Sydney currently has photogrammetry, but if not it’s a good guess it will get it with the WU. This then would have no significant effect on the Orbx package though, unless there are some graphical glitches Orbx would have to iron out.


Go try and buy it. I’ll wait.

(last post in that thread)

while WUs normally contain additional photogrammetry cities

Photogrammetry cities with handcrafted models for major landmarks. That’s been consistent through all the WUs. WU6, for example, explicitly included the Cathedral, the Oper Frankfurt, and Deutsche Bank Park as handcrafted models.

When I go to Frankfurt I only see photogrammetry. No 3D models.

Well… photogrammetry is just a subset of 3d modelling. And you, the user, have no real way to tell whether the model you’re seeing was produced by photogrammetry or is a hand-crafted 3d asset hung with photogrammetric textures. (Unless it’s a really bad photogrammetric rendering, i.e. a melting building, in which case you can be pretty sure it was photogrammetricly generated.) So what you’re seeing in a photogrammetry city may, in fact, be a handcrafted model – there’s no foolproof way to tell.

The belief – unconfirmed by Orbx as far as I know – is that Microsoft just flat-out bought Orbx’s Frankfurt assets and used them in WU6. Which would explain why the product was pulled from sale – it would be fraudulent to claim it’s adding additional models if those exact models are already the ones used in the sim.

We know Orbx is developing the Australia scenery for the next WU. It defies logic to think that they would re-invent the wheel instead of using their pre-existing assets in that development. The only question is whether they use ALL of their Sydney assets - thereby eliminating their add-on product - or only some of them, such that the Sydney mod still adds some quantity of non-photogrammetric models. The same applies for Adelaide and Brisbane, too.

I seriously doubt that all three packages will be 100% absorbed into the WU, as MSFT would reasonably have to pay Orbx at least the future value of sales of all three, plus a kicker for undercutting their purchasers ex post facto (which isn’t very good business, you have to admit). So it will be interesting to see what develops. (It’s also possible that MSFT isn’t having Orbx do Sydney at all; that they’re being brought on to do assets for Cairns or Darwin or Hobart or some other city that will be a new photogrammetry city.)

It does. Pretty decent photogrammetry, actually. The Orbx mod is still better, though.


Sydney is a Cityscape serie, not a “simple” Landmark as London / Frankfurt / Paris. They replace aerial imagery (with new color balance), rework water and coastline, add watermask… even basic building are replace (approximatly 28.000). It’s a heavy scenery.

I doubt WU will have Orbx’s Sydney level. But it can permit Orbx’s to lighten their scenery it will be great.

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I am also interested in the specifics of the Orbx relationship with the WU’s. I have been purchasing their scenery products, but I am also wondering if there is any significant and justifiable value in continuing to do so. For comparison upon release of the WU, here is a link to what it currently looks like with the respective Orbx and other Sydney area scenery.

Can’t. Already own it. :slight_smile: Interestingly enough it doesn’t work if you install it.
Also it appears that I must have deinstalled the POIs for WU6 by accident and that’s why I never noticed that they actually did include all the buildings from the Orbx package.

SO a bit fat sorry for that. That one’s definitely on me.

There have been single landmarks - yes. By far not with all photogrammetry cities. Also the Orbx Packages contain dozens to maybe 100 or even more buildings.

I am aware that photogrammetry is a sort of machine-learned 3D modelling based on satellite data.
But I see no way that you can’t tell photogrammetry buildings from a hand built ones. Most photogrammetry buildings have some kind of small distortions, textures not lining up as well as lack of 3D detail on things like spires, cupolas or other stuff that’s very curvey or narrow. Photogrammetry as it is today is not capable to accurately display minor details like banisters, lamp posts, antennas or other “small” 3D objects. So you will always see a difference.
On the other hand sometimes Orbx buildings look a tad too perfect and lack weathering and aging.

Just to let you see a comparison:

One picture was taken directy from the Orbx App, the other was taken today directly in game. I agree that the skyscrapers are not very good quality. But when you get near other buildings like the cathedral or the train station you will always see the difference. And that’s been the case in all PG cities I frequent regularly: Vienna, Munich, Augsburg, Nuremberg, Verona, Rome, Florence … even Venice, which has very very detailed PG. As soon as you get near a building

And I’m 100% sure it will remain that way

So thanks for making me aware of my mistake. Glad I got the POIs reinstalled.


No worries. I knew the Frankfurt pack was unavailable because I tried to buy it about four times. :slight_smile: (Because I’m largely in agreement with you that any Orbx pack beats straight photogrammetry every time.)

I think we definitely agree that it will be interesting to see what the WU includes and doesn’t include…


I want to remembre this is not a cities-buildings-photogrametry simulator, this is a flight simulator, and the focus of the game it would be, planes and weather, the rest is a present

Orbx admitted in their forum that they did use the exact Frankfurt city pack assets for the world update. I asked.

Here’s the proof:

I’ve been calling out Orbx on this but I keep getting shut down by fan boys. Let’s see if more people get annoyed by this practice when Jan. 31 comes around.

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What use is a flight simulator without the scenery to fly in? Unless of course you like to spend 8 hours 33.000 ft above the Atlantic.

The scenery is actually the main selling point for MSFS. That’s the thing that really sets it apart from XPlane and P3D. But I agree that MSFS has to grow and be a better flight simulator. In many aspects XPlane and P3D are still better when it comes to simulating systems, aerodynamics, procedures, ATC etc.

However, this thread is about the next World Update, which is all about scenery. Sim Updates are about the other stuff. And you can be sure that most people doing this new World Update will have little to no knowledge how to improve the whatever’s being worked on for the next Sim Update in February.

Yeah, thanks. I realised and admitted as much in my last post :slight_smile:


A bit off topic, I love Orbx products they do an amazing job, but they focus to much on their mainland Australian Continent. They need to develop a few North American and European Regions.

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For MSFS this is quite an untrue statement.

I’m patiently waiting for them to bring more love to us Downunder. So far they have only produced (in house) 6 products for Ausralia. 2 Landmark packs (Adelaide & Brisbane), 1 Cityscape (Sydney) and 3 airports (YBBN, YBMK & YMEN).

2 inhouse products for NZ, the mesh and Auckland Landmarks.

There have been 17 Orbx inhouse products for North America. 16 airports and the Alaska Mesh.

35 Orbx inhouse products for Europe. 1 Region pack, 2 Landmark packs (not including Frankfurt, if you do then 36 EU releases) & 32 airports.

If anything Australia has largely been ignored by Orbx within MSFS. So I am very glad to hear they have in fact provided help in creation of our Aussie world update.


That definition works for some. What about bush pilots exploring the world? That too is equally valid use of flight simulator. I get that mthe highest percentage of people just do airliners. But there are bush planes in the sim for a purpose, to explore.

Ehrrm… That’s not how I read their statement.

The city of Frankfurt is just that: the city of Frankfurt.

When two developers are going to bring that city modelled into a simulator, they’ll be working with the exact same landmarks or buildings, as the city of Frankfurt is just one and not two.

ORBX then states that MSobo obviously works with the same detailed “assets” (buildings) but that those from ORBX are LOD-optimised and hence could still be considered as a commercial product to buy, over the less optimised pack of MSobo.

That’s really not the same as: ORBX donated their work to the WorldUpdate from Asobo as I seem to read your statement.

World Updates are usually a package of mutliple addons. You don’t have to download the entire World Update. You can just open the subset, and just install the Photogrammetry cities that you need. So in the case of ORBX Sydney, if the World Update 7 has a PG models for Sydney included, you can just not download the PG Sydney from WU7 package, while keeping the ORBX Sydney installed. That way there’s no conflicting resources.

I personally turn off PG myself. They’re a massive FPS killers for me, and the appearance of a melting building just doesn’t look good to me. I’d rather have an inaccurate default buildings, rather than an accurate but poorly rendered PG building that gives me 5 FPS every time my camera faces them.

ORBX integrated to Frankfurt City pack to the WU.
So it is redundant right now.
They promised to add more buildings to former buyers of the pack.
But it is a while since.

I hope they don’t go the same way here, as I would like to keep my values.

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I gotta say it’s especially disappointing this time. If just the communication about this? Maybe I missed something. But ORBX is working with Asobo on this World Update, so the excuse of “Asobo didn’t give us any time to update our product(s) affected by this update.”, doesn’t really seem credible. They should have had an update to Sydney made to work with the WU released the same time as, or at least announced the day the WU came out.

After Paris, London and now Sydney? I don’t think I’m going to be buying any more cityscapes for city’s not yet covered in a World Update. Their value once an WU comes out covering the city seems a bit dubious.


After today’s World update, ORBX Sidney has some issues and will have to be updated. Some of MSFS WU buildings are now visible in the middle of ORBX scenery and the frame rates are dropping big time. It is almost like the WU took over ORBX…A mess. ORBX is pretty good when it comes to updating their products. I am going to keep an eye open for updates.

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