When will OMSI be released?
OMSI will be published in early 2011.
Who is your publisher?
Aerosoft GmbH. OMSI will be published as boxed and download version.
Will there be a trial version?
What does OMSI cost?
The recommended retail price will be EUR 29.99.
Which vehicles will be included in OMSI?
OMSI includes the famous Berlin doubledeckers SD200 and SD202, each in several series with their prototypical differences. The buses can be fitted with about 20 authentic advertising liveries of the 80s.
Will there be a real route?
Yes! It is the old BVG omnibus line 92 which runs from Spandau, Freudstraße to Heerstraße Stadtgrenze (today’s name: Hahneberg) in the very west of Berlin. Today this line is called M37, bur our simulation puts the route back in the 80s, shortly before the German reunification.
Will there be ticket sale in OMSI?
What system specifications does OMSI need?
That is after all an question of the displayed scenery density. Out in the country the performance will be better of course than in a crowded downtown area. An up-to-date system can’t be wrong, but OMSI should also run satisfactorily on older systems. With OMSI still being in development, we can’t give accurate specifications yet.
Does OMSI support articulated buses?
This feature will become available once we have published our first articulated bus.
Can you create your own sceneries and vehicles?
Basically, OMSI is designed as an open system and a platform for any kind of add-ons. There will be a graphic track editor, so everyone can build their own landscapes, streets and bus lines. Of course you can create your own vehicles, too. We recommend Blender as a construction tool. The driving characteristics can be manipulated using the included scripting language.
Can you import existing models?
If the models use the x-format, that shouldn’t be a problem.
Can you edit the existing textures?
Yes. OMSI textures are stored as bmp, tga or dds files.
Are the model files in OMSI readable or encrypted?
Both is possible. OMSI can process normal x-files and secured binary files in the “o3d”-format that can’t be read externally. There will be a converter so you can change x-files to o3d-files.
Which vehicle functions are possible in OMSI?
Generally spoken, there is no limit. Nearly any function a real omnibus provides can be simulated in OMSI.
What does the script engine offer?
The script engine enables the user in a simple way to alter the driving characteristics and functions of a vehicle. Every vehicle in OMSI is originally just a wagon with a certain number of axes that can be influenced by traction or braking forces. The scripts then tell OMSI how this should be done. That means you can create every kind of gearboxes (gear change, torque converter, retarder, kickdown, etc.), air brakes (spring-loaded brakes, parking brake, compressor, protection valve, etc.) or any other functions like door operation, wipers, heating, lighting and so on in a realistic way. There are no internal limits, thus even nonstandard things like a hybrid drive can be simulated.
Do I need programming skills for scripting?
Programming skills are a great advantage even though the scripting language differs from the programming syntax you might be used to. Anyway, due to its logical design, it is very easy to learn. Of course there will be a comprehensive documentation.
What does the graphics engine offer?
- realistic day / night effects
- realistic weather conditions
- extensive lighting functions with overlapping effects
- mirror and reflection textures as well as bumpmapping
- different types of transparency
- freely editable spline-roads with slopes and banks
- any number of terrain tiles of 300m*300m each
- meshterrain with many modelling possibilities for creating hills, etc.
What does the sound engine offer?
- authentic simulation of the original vehicle sound, controlled via script
- freely definable values and curves for pitch, volume and playing conditions
- ambient sounds like rain or church bells
- different sounds for inside and outside
- stereo and doppler effect
What kind of model animation will be possible?
Basically, any animation can be controlled via script. Wheels, doors and any operation handles or buttons are animated of course and can be controlled by the user’s input.
Will there be blinkers and animated rear-view mirrors?
Both are possible. And both will be used just like in real life, so you will find the rear-view mirrors just where you would expect them to be, not in an additional window.
Can you drive with joystick or steering wheel in OMSI?
Yes. There are three ways to drive a bus in OMSI:
- using the keyboard
- using the mouse
- using joystick or wheel. OMSI supports force-feedback effects so you can feel the engine vibrating and you need to put different effort in steering, depending on the current speed. Of course OMSI fully supports wheels with 900° steering angle.
Do you operate the handles and buttons by keyboard or mouse?
Both is possible. You can freely define key combinations for any function and of course use the mouse to push buttons or move handles.
Which views can be selected?
You can choose between four different views:
- Driver view: you can select a view from the driver’s seat, e.g. to the front, to the door or looking in the mirror.
- Passenger view: You can take a seat at various positions in the passenger compartment.
- External view: You can watch the bus from outside. The view moves with the bus while driving.
- Free view: You can move freely on the map.
Furthermore there will be view-hotkeys e. g. for a quick glimpse on the timetable. In all views you can pan or zoom as you like.
Does OMSI support TrackIR?
Yes, TrackIR 5 will be supported.
Will there be working matrix displays, passenger information systems and announcements?
Matrix displays will be possible, grid matrices as well as full matrices. They can be operated using the keyboard or using the simulated information-device just like the real thing. Manual or automatic announcements will be possible.
Will there be a multiplayer mode?
No, but we keep that in mind for future releases.
Will there be road traffic, pedestrians, passengers and other buses?
Yes, there will be road traffic and pedestrians. Passengers get on and off and take their seat in the bus. There will be other AI-buses, too.
Will there be lines and timetables?
Yes. Lines and routes can be defined in the track editor and can be imposed on the corresponding buses. So the AI buses use the same timetable as you do, making you feel part of the whole thing.
What happens at the terminus?
The same things that happen in reality. Have a break, look at the beautiful omnibus, walk around, explore the scenery (thermos bottle and cigarette won’t be simulated ;-)) and don’t forget to begin your return journey on time.
Will there be an evaluation of your driving at the end?
Yes. Several factors like punctuality will be considered.
Do you need any additional windows while driving?
No, all the information you need can be found where you would find it in reality. Furthermore, some values like speed, odometer, time and script variables can be displayed. But this is intended only for testing purposes.
Does OMSI provide any driving aids?
In general, you will have to find your way and the correct stops on your own, just like a real bus driver. Of course, this knowledge will be provided previously. For this, OMSI will include a general map. Furthermore, additional direction signs can be activated while driving.
Will there be traffic lights in OMSI?
Yes. The traffic lights can be controlled via script as well, so you can define phases, time of circulation and more for every intersection. Whether there will be a traffic-dependent control mechanism is still to be discussed.
Will there be only a windows version of OMSI?
Yes. OMSI is based on DirectX, so we can’t easily adapt it to another OS.
You have been well-known for years in the Flight Simulator, BVE and TRS scene. How did you get the idea of developing an omnibus simulator?
Well, after our subway projects, OMSI fulfils another of our childhood dreams. Both of us had always longed for a decent omnibus simulator, so with our subway programming experience, we finally started to put the idea into practice. That was in February 2007 by the way, just to let you know how much effort has to be put in such a simulator.
© Marcel Kuhnt und Rüdiger Hülsmann