Beta 6 is out and with it comes quite a list of improvements.
We listened to some feedback and decided to bring mouse-look back but in a new and totally rewritten way. Originally, it was removed because as a MODE, it was confusing. Many users would pick it thinking it was “the” 3D cockpit mode and then be horrified that they weren’t able to use the mouse for anything else. Mouse-Look is no longer a MODE…there is only ONE mode which is 3D cockpit mode. This is the mode where you right click and drag to move your head and then use the scroll wheel to zoom…but now if you double right click, the view mode is locked into “mouse-look” so you can let go of your mouse button and the camera will still track the mouse movement. To get out of the mode, just right click again or switch views and it’ll disable. This works for users with a mouse and for users with a trackpad.
Quick-Look views have been fixed so that they now smoothly transition from one preset to another preset within the cockpit – without recentering each time. I do have to make an apology that your existing presets will no longer work with Beta 6 until you go to your aircraft folder and rename your preferences to *_view_prefs.txt. They used to be called *_prefs.txt. They won’t be lost or deleted, X-Plane just won’t see them until you rename them.
One other neat feature to note…it’s a really simple feature but I think it adds a nice touch of realism. As Tom was working on the Baron he said to us that since so many users like to start their planes from cold-dark-cockpit mode, they should have a way of using a flashlight so they can see what they’re doing before they get the plane powered up. What a great idea! So that’s what we did! Most aviators use a red flashlight to preserve their eye sensitivity so in the View menu, you’ll now see a way to Toggle on and off the Red flashlight. You can tie it to a keyboard or joystick button as well. There’s no menu entry for it but if you’d prefer a white flashlight, there’s a command for that as well so you can pick what you like best. Like all of the other fancy dynamic lighting in the sim, the flashlight only works with HDR enabled.
I’ll leave you with a little video demo of it to see while your X-Plane is updating to Beta 6 in the background.