Prepar3D from Lockheed Martin – a new experience?

Lockheed Martin are soon to release a new Flight Sim based on Microsoft’s ESP platform that will maintain full compatibility with FSX SP2.  It would appear that any FSX airplane, gauges and effects add-ons can be added to Prepar3D, and you can also add scenery, missions, etc add-ons.

In the scenery department, Prepar3D contains some major enhancements over FSX including 10,000,000 10 million 1km scenery tiles comprising, 3,000,000 urban/farms higher density tiles plus 7,000,000 real world vegetation tiles.  Surprisingly there are only 3 seasons with Spring making a non-appearance, and there will be day and night textures including high detail buildings.

Water textures are also updated with new ” dynamic water”, which will have a “transparency effect” so that you will be able to see through the water as in real life plus it looks like that you will be able to interact with the water on or under the surface. This makes this a multipurpose simulation as you can have planes, cars, surface boats and submarines.  Glug!  I can’t wait for the simulated whale or pig!

Joysticks (yokes, etc) are well catered  with a major advance in that Prepar3D now accesses up to  32 axes and 128 buttons per joystick with support being provided for budding Fighter Pilots!
These are the major features listed on the Prepar3D website: here

Prepar3D Features:
Customizable, data driven graphics and models
Accurate topography with Regional and Cultural appropriate textures
Modifiable real-time weather system, continuous time of day, seasons and a variety of lighting effects
Realistic Air Traffic Control
Expandable library of vehicle models
Airport vehicles
Highway traffic
Boats and ships on lakes and oceans
Air traffic
Wild animals (Miguel has been modelled at last!)
45 high-detail airports
39 high-detail cities
Tower Controller

It would appear to based (initially at least) in the USA and I should also mention that Lockheed do not say if this program will be suitable for us, day to day simmers, as it is being geared toward “for non-government, government and commercial organizations”.  We can only dream.
System requirements are modest using at least a 2.8GHz processor, modest video card and working on all current MS Platforms.
Support is well covered with an extensive forum (in its infancy) and a SDK is provided which is “backwards compatible with Microsoft Flight Simulator X and Microsoft ESP v1.0. “  The SDK contains all of the elements that a 3rd party supplier might need including:

  • Core Utilities Kit
  • Environment Kit
  • Mission Creation Kit
  • SimObject Creation Kit

The product will be available by download and will cost circa $500 or thereabout.

On the download page downloads there are 4 Lockheed planes to download compatible with FSX and Prepar3D.  The planes are L-188 Electra Passenger and Cargo Versions, Lockheed L-1049G Super Constellation plus the L-749 Lockheed Constellation and 12 repaints for the latter.  There is also a version of FSUIPC for Prepar3D — what can PeteD tell us about that?

There is a nice video: here

0 Responses

  1. Specifically, the L-M license excludes selling to consumers. And given L-M and MS are two of the most litigious organisations on the face of the planet, this is one product WE entertainment users won’t be getting…
    Proof here:-
    Whether there might be a spinoff benefit for FSX users remains to be seen as I suppose there might be some cross-platform compatibility that might port over. Flight 1 will no doubt tell us…

  2. Hi,

    Just a correction, there is an error in the description. It is only the Norfolk, Virginia scenery that has 3 seasons. The person must have mis-read the requirements. The rest of the scenery still has five seasons. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, Hard Winter.

    In terms of usage for the software, I would encourage anyone that would like to develop add-ons, flights, missions etc to sign up as a Developer. This costs $9.95 per month and you get two copies of Prepar3D. Anyone that is a developer is not using it for entertainment (unless you are someone that derives entertainment from developing, then you shouldn’t join…. no wait….)


  3. Oh, one more thing, the software is still the same world-wide database with over 24,000 airports. It is not US-centric (not sure where that came from). In fact, the local airports from my location here in sunny Canada are still there.

  4. Hello
    Looking at the LM website it looks like you enter your name ect , provide your CC details and you are in.
    I saw no checks for developer credentials (are there any like a special badge or funny handshake).
    Basicaly anyone with a copy of photoshop and FSDS can call themselves a developer.
    What you get up to with Prepar3D in the privacy of your own home is your business.
    LM did not buy this code just to sell 1 copy each to Flight1 and Aerosoft, If you want one I would guess they will sell you a copy.

  5. John
    Thanks for the corrections/comments- I could only find 3 seasons on the Norfolk page and applied it to the whole expereience. Further, when I looked on the site and I couldn’t find if it was world wide so assumed (incorrectly) that it was only the USA.
    Sometimes expediency doesn’t equal accuracy.
    Thanks again

  6. Hi Peter,

    No problem, I think it is great that you found the site and are writing about it, so thank you for that!


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