After the release of the Microsoft Flight Simulator, the visual contrast between the new platform in comparison to what we had before was substantial. We’re not here to compare the simulators, however. Every platform has its pros and cons, nevertheless, without a doubt, Microsoft has together with Asobo achieved something, at least visually, revolutionary.
Fortunately enough, the X-Plane community has a wide range of ways how to make the simulator look better. Ranging from Enhanced Skyscapes, introducing volumetric clouds and completely reworked atmospherics, to Ortho4XP that brings a whole new realism to the ground visuals. It does require some additional work, yes, but what does not after all?
Ortho4XP – Good, but not perfect
Ortho4XP is a very successful and used utility in the X-Plane community. The issue is that many people find Ortho4XP installation very troublesome. The interface it offers is not very user-friendly and takes some time to get used to. Not to mention that it often happens that the downloaded imagery features significant colour differences as well as clouds.
Consequently, many developers and enthusiasts enhance the tiles it generates, fix their inaccuracies, and colour-correct them. We can find SpainUHD on the list as well as VStates or Forkboy, to name a few.
That is when developers like Verticalsim comes to the scene, at least when it comes to orthoimagery around the United States.
In this article, we will concentrate on VStates from Verticalsim. VStates is nowadays part of the VOrthos family. The renaming has occurred after Verticalsim presented his VCountries sceneries to the public.
VStates: Freeware colour-corrected orthoimagery
As mentioned earlier, VStates is colour-corrected orthoimagery of the majority of the US states. Verticalsim publishes all of his VStates sceneries free of charge on Google Drive for everyone to download and experience the new level of immersion.
Verticalsim is still, up to today, working on updating the imagery to meet his latest standards.
On average, one state has around 28GB when zipped. You can’t download individual tiles in a specific state, but have to download the whole package.
You can browse and download VStates through two Google Drive archives linked at the Verticalsim’s website. Make sure to also download the overlays. After downloading the files, the installation is very straightforward by only copying the files to your scenery folder.
Verticalsim’s work is not only limited to this project. He also has a vast array of other sceneries for both X-Plane and Microsoft Flight Simulator which we would suggest you look at to support his work. You can learn more about his other works in our previous articles or at his website.
Naturally, all his sceneries are compatible with VStates and some even feature a very extensive ortho coverage, including his Baltimore Airport scenery which we’ve reviewed just recently.