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Mathijs Kok

OnAir: Airline Manager (Released)

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image.png OnAir: Airline Manager is a massively multiplayer online (MMO) with a persistent world that runs in real-time. As the core, it is a traditional tycoon with traditional tycoon elements like a skill tree and increasing difficulty levels. Designed for flight simmers AND tycoon enthusiasts it is a project Aerosoft loves. It’s the first project we did that aims at ALL of our customers! You can use it with FSX/P3D/X-Plane but also without a flight simulator!

The user starts an airline and tries to grow it to a larger airline (or something else, see below). You start by renting a small aircraft and transporting some good. If you are a flight simmer you can fly these missions yourself, if you are not, you can hire a virtual pilot and have him fly it. Do check the weather (yes, real-time weather) because taking a job and not being able to complete it can be costly!

As you start to make money you are also gaining experience points that you can use in the skill tree to allow you to train your pilots, get a license to transport passenger and dozens of other skills. But you will also run into your first challenges. You will find that your hired pilot is on a mandatory rest or that you landed on a small airport that does not have the fuel you need. All these limitations are based on real-world limits, regulations, and rules. If you think you can handle full realism, select Survival mode. You will be running at full realism and will have access to a leader board based on your company's ROA (Return on Assets) ratio.

Slowly but steadily, you will be able to buy or lease larger aircraft; thus, enabling completely new challenges. If you buy an expensive aircraft, you need to plan maintenance (and that costs a small fortune) and it needs to fly a lot. You will also need multiple crew members (including cabin crew) and you'll need to start thinking about where you'd like to place them. If they are not at their home airport you will need to pay hotels. If you need to relocate them, you can decide to send a small aircraft or buy tickets for them. Or…. ask one of your friends to take them.

To be successful in the game you need friends. You are not alone in the world. You compete with all other users or you build up strategic alliances where you support each other. You can ask others to fly your missions, you can fly part of a mission to avoid getting your aircraft too far from their home base and let your friends complete it. If you got room in your aircraft and fly roughly in the right direction pick up the cargo of your friend and drop it off so he does not have to fly the whole way.

As the system is written to give the user a incredible freedom. You can start a company that specializes in medical transports, or in flying horses around to big events. You can even not fly at all and try to make money with an FBO selling services, repairs, and fuel to other companies. Or why not try to pick up all the best paying jobs and offer them to other companies for a slightly lower amount? Or buy a lot of aircraft and lease them to other companies? OnAir is the ‘world’ what you do in it is your choice.

 

Tomorrow we’ll explain some more details and show some more images.

Although not everything is completed (X-Plane and smartphone support is still missing), we invite people to see if they like it (of course without charge).  Every bit of progress will stay on your account so when we start in earnest (Nov 2nd) so you will have a big advantage!


     To enter the public beta:

     Learn more about OnAir Airline Manager here: https://www.onair.company

     Find out more about the Early Access here: https://www.onair.company/news/EA1

     Or directly download the client here: https://www.onair.company/download/publish.htm

     Launch the client and create an account

 

    Once you are in the simulator you are asked to select a starting location for your airline.  

    We kindly ask you to select a location in Western Europe for this test.
 

 

If you got questions or comments, feel free to leave them here or at the OnAir forums that you will find at https://www.OnAir.company

 

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On a personal note…

Twenty-one years ago, my good friend Antoine Becker and I worked on an idea we called OnAir that would add a goal to what we fly in our sims (basically Microsoft FS5.0 at that time). Our ideas were solid but technology was simply not ready. We needed a lot of customers with always-on internet connection (yes, we started when internet was dial-up), smartphones and servers that could power complex systems at moderate costs.

It is now 2019 and all these conditions are met, and Antoine recently surprised me with a working OnAir server and software. Almost all our ideas that we defined 21 years ago are implemented and dozens of new ideas are included.  Twenty years and a lot of work from Antoine and his company create a product from an idea. As I am part of the inception of this idea, I am super happy to be part of its coming to life and could not be prouder to invite you to try it out!

 

 

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Part 2

 

image.pngOnAir has many aspects never seen in any Airline Tycoon type of game but by far the most defining element is that you can fly every flight. Using FSX, P3D or X-Plane you ARE the pilot and the better you fly, the better your score. If you let the virtual pilots fly the flights you will see they are also not perfect, they might be late, make hard landings, etc. But of course, you can spend some of your Experience Points to send them on training to become better pilots. And yes, as this is all running in real-time, that means your pilot will be unavailable for some time.

If you are a flight simmer, OnAir will try to read all the add-ons that you use. After that, it will try to focus missions on the airports you own and on the aircraft you own. As you paid real money for your aircraft OnAir will allow you a slightly faster path to being able to use those, but you still need to grow your company so competition with users that do fly all the flights themselves. OnAir works with every other add-on for the sim you prefer.

 

OnAir has a big smartphone component (Android and Android. Not only can you track the progress of your company, but you can also keep following the mission market making sure you have first pick of the most valuable missions. Although you can ‘pause’ your game (at a cost) the world moves on so it will pay off to keep an eye on the world.

 

Everybody is invited to try out OnAir for two weeks without any cost. After that, we will ask you a modest fee to access the OnAir world servers. You can pay for one month, three months, six months or a full year. When you code is no longer valid, we will put your company on hold (but the fee for pausing the game applies and when your money is spent, we will liquidate your company, of course after warning you).

If you have friends you think might like OnAir, you can ask our servers to invite them. They will be able to participate fully in the game with just one limitation, they can only fly your missions and can’t spend any money. The moment they decide to own their own company the money they earned can be accessed and play the game normally.

 

OnAir is a simulation that installed on your own system, it is not an internet application. This is done to make it fast and smooth, but it does require an internet connection to use. Your privacy is hugely important to us. We need your email address and how you want to be called in the game. That’s all. If you buy a code, we will NOT get your credit card number or any other data, we just get a yes or no from the payment provider. While our server will track a lot of data on your company to make it part of our virtual world, we do not care a lot where you live, how old you are or if you ever bought Birkenstocks. If you want to be addressed in the game as ‘TheBestPilotEver’ we will address you as ‘ThebestPilotEver’. We prefer real names as it makes for a better experience but will never enforce it.

 

Features

  • Persistent real time world. It never stops, 24/7, with real time weather, real world events. It’s alive.
  • Many roles possible. Managing an airline or FBO (selling maintenance, fuel and even aircraft), fly as a pilot, try to find the most profitable jobs and have other airlines fly them etc. We build the world; you need to decide how to use it.
  • Designed with player interaction in mind. Strategic alliances between player possible. Code sharing.  You got an aircraft you are not using, rent it out to your friends!
  • Hire people. You can have your friends work for your company or hire AI bots.
  • Gain skills.  Make your company more efficient or being able to handle more complex tasks by using your skill point on the Skill Tree. From a license to do medical flights to better skill in hiring cabin crew.
  • Manage your company using the special Smartphone app. If you have multiple aircraft flying long distances you can monitor their flights.
  • Logistic Center that has thousands of assignments ready. Never again wonder where you are going to fly. Just pick an assignment and go fly!
  • All airport, most aircraft.  You can fly from every airport in the world in almost all generally used aircraft. You can even add aircraft as long as you are willing to do a check ride in a simulator so we can measure its performance.
  • A simulation for flight simmers AND tycoon/manager enthusiasts. Fully designed to be used with or without a connected simulator! Compatible with all versions of FSX, all versions of P3D and X-Plane 10 and 11. Support for the new Microsoft Flight Simulator in progress. There is no difference in gameplay between sim-connected and not connected versions. Same world, same interaction.
  • For simulator users:
    • All your flights are monitored in detail and logged into the system using very clever system that needs almost no attention.
    • Allows time compression
    • Allows flights to be stopped and resumed later.

Features compared to others similar simulations

  • Other Airline Managers often use fictive airports, OnAir uses EVERY airport in the world.
  • Other Airline Managers are only focused the flying and financial aspects, OnAir looks at far more. From hotel costs for your crew to relocation costs.
  • If you are using FSX, P3D or X-Plane you can fly the flights yourself. You are not just the ‘owner’, you are also a part of the staff and play an active role.
  • OnAir allows ALL of our customers to play together, simmers or gamers
  • OnAir uses many real-world elements, from weather to real-world events (for example Tour de France)

 

Although not everything is completed (X-Plane and smartphone support is still missing), we invite people to see if they like it (of course without charge).  Every bit of progress will stay on your account so when we start in earnest (Nov 2nd) so you will have a big advantage!

 


     To enter the public beta:

     Learn more about OnAir Airline Manager here: https://www.onair.company

     Find out more about the Early Access here: https://www.onair.company/news/EA1

     Or directly download the client here: https://www.onair.company/download/publish.htm

     Launch the client and create an account

 

    Once you are in the simulator you are asked to select a starting location for your airline.  

    We kindly ask you to select a location in Western Europe for this test.
 

 

If you got questions or comments, feel free to leave them here or at the OnAir forums that you will find at https://www.OnAir.company

 

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It is very exciting to see this here! I have been a beta tester for OnAir for about two months now (started when they first made a little announcement about a closed beta on another forum) and it has been an absolute pleasure being a part of it. Not only is OnAir so much more of a complete airline management program than others I have used (as already described by Mathijs), but Antoine and the dev team are brilliant at what they do. They have listened to feedback and suggestions (and already implemented many), they are able to fix bugs very quickly and they always respond to posts on their forums and let us know what they are up and how they are progressing with development. Since the start of the closed beta, there have already been 8 updates (just about one per week) with substantial changes, improvements and bug fixes.

 

I am very much looking forward to the continued development of OnAir and also to see all the new people that will surely be pouring into the OnAir world after this announcement here!

 

Jacob

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There will be a IOS (and Android) app but it's more intended to be a add-on to the windows client. That remains the base.

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3 hours ago, Mathijs Kok said:

There will be a IOS (and Android) app but it's more intended to be a add-on to the windows client. That remains the base.

 

Thanks Mathijs appreciated for the time and answer above, ok time to download and see what it does here local performance wise.

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The local client is very simply. It runs fine on my first gen Microsoft Surface and when you run it next to your sim it is highly unlikely you will ever see any influence. Compiled with the latest compilers it is very good at finding cores that are underutilized.

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To give some idea on the depth of this airline simulation I will copy some hints and tips collected by our friend Jacob (https://onairhelp.freshdesk.com/support/discussions/topics/48000555830),

 

  • All airports have open hours, which is a time period during which the airport operates normally. This info can be seen on each airport’s details page. If you land at an airport outside of this time period, you will be charged a small penalty, which can add up and affect your profits, especially in a new company. To avoid this, adjust the “Company UTC offset” in the Global Settings to best suit your flying hours. This limitation can be turned off if you are not playing in survival mode, using the “Disable Landing Penalties” option.

  • If you fly into or out of a specific airport often or wish for your company to have a presence in different parts of the world, think about opening an FBO there. This has many potential benefits:

    • Tie downs and hangers to save you on parking fees

    • Storage space to save you on cargo storage fees if you unload and leave your cargo at the airport

    • Buying fuel at wholesale and using it to refuel your planes (or selling it to others at a profit)

    • Workshop services to repair your planes with an option to allow other players usage of your facilities

    • Crew rooms for your employees to use while they rest, saving you on hotel fees

    • Getting regular FBO query jobs with specific criteria like distance and cargo/passenger amounts and direction

    • You also receive a 70% discount on landing and parking fees at airports where you have an FBO

  • Check METAR info on the Live Map for your destinations on AI flights, especially on jobs that expire soon. AI pilots may attempt to land in bad weather (success depends on their and the co-pilot stress resistance stat) but if not able, they will divert to the alternate. If that also is not possible, they will find the closest airport with good conditions. Here are the conditions for the color coded weather icons on the Live Map:

    • Green: visibility > 5SM and cloud base > 3000ft

    • Yellow: visibility between 3SM and 5SM or cloud base between 1000ft and 3000ft

    • Red: visibility between 1SM and 3SM or cloud base between 500ft and 1000ft (chance of AI pilot diversion: 15%)

    • Purple: visibility < 1SM or cloud base < 500ft (chance of AI pilot diversion: 60%)

    • Keep in mind that the METARs are only updated about once per week currently. They will be up to date upon release.

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More tips:

 

  • You can pause your company if you need to be away from it for a while. When you pause, your loans and aircraft ownership costs are paused and hired (but not freelance) employees will not get paid. The cost to pause your company depends on your company value. The formula is: company value/100 with a minimum of 200cr. You cannot pause if you have any rented aircraft or any active freelancers.

  • If you use accelerated time during a flight, the pilot(s), crew and the aircraft will be “in warp” and unavailable until the actual time when the flight should have been finished.

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One tester had a fun experience in OnAir recently, makes for good reading!

 

I had an interesting experience with my company in OnAir yesterday and it made me feel like I was really running an airline. The realism of it was unlike anything I've experienced in a program of this kind - so thank you OnAir 🙂

 

The story:

 

I accepted a job two days ago which was quite lucrative (for me at least, since I play on survival and with no loans), a really good find indeed. It had an expiration date of a little over 1 day (I didn't notice this until the next day). It was one of the hub type jobs where there are several cargo/pax locations and one destination. This particular job had 4 different pickup locations, each a good distance away from each other.

 

Right after accepting the job, I sent one of my pilots to the first pickup location in a Super Cargomaster with another job that was going in the same general direction. And then I went to sleep...in real life 🙂

 

When I logged in the next day, it was the first time that I noticed that the job was expiring quite soon (in about 10 hours). No problem, I thought, as the pilot I sent on his way the previous day was now very close to one of the pickup locations. I sent him on his way to pickup the first part of the cargo. I had a C207 Skywagon nearby another pickup location and I sent that plane on its way also.

 

After doing some other company business, I checked the Live Map and noticed that the Super Cargomaster was heading to a different airport than the one where I directed it to go. I found out it was diverted due to weather. Indeed, the desired airport was under extreme IMC with an overcast of 300 feet. I should have checked the weather report. By the way, the OnAir METAR info is not very current for the time being until release, according to Antoine, so be aware of that when planning your flights.

 

So what do I do now, I thought. Since no plane could land at the first pickup location because of the weather, I had to improvise and look for a rental directly at the airport. I was happy to find another Super Cargomaster right at the airport and at a decent rental price. By this time, I had already sent the first plane to the second pickup location so I had to now also hire a freelance pilot to fly the newly rented one.

 

As if this wasn't enough...

While I was dealing with the weather situation, my Skywagon arrived at another pickup location but could not be flown any more because it was due for its 100 hour checkup! So off to the market again to find a replacement. This time, there wasn't one at the airport but I found one close enough, rented it, moved my pilot there and had her fly it to the pickup location.

 

Because the job was expiring soon, there wasn't enough time for anyone to stop at the other 2 pickup locations so yet another Super Cargomaster had to be rented...and another freelance pilot hired.

 

Finally, all pieces of the puzzle were en route to the destination but the clock was ticking. Estimated arrivals of 2 of the 4 cargoes were showing about 30 minutes after the job expiry and my pilots were pushing the aircraft as much as (safely) possible. I had my eyes pealed and ears open for up to the minute position reports from my pilots and after promising them a on-time delivery bonus, they were able to get the cargo to its destination with literally 1 minute to spare! Now they are resting in the first class lounge, courtesy of the company CEO 🙂

 

When the job was accepted, the pay was about 62,000cr. When delivered, I actually got paid about 1,200,000cr due to the last minute bonus. That sure was a nice boost to my finances but I'm not sure that such a huge bonus was intended. I can understand the pay going up and up before a job is accepted the closer to the expiry date but once it is accepted, an airline probably wouldn't get paid more the closer to the expiry date it was delivered. In fact, I think it would be the opposite, where there might be a bonus for delivering sooner.

 

Anyway, I don't usually write stories but I thought this was interesting because of the level of logistical realism that the situation provided. So once again, thank you OnAir!

 

Jacob - Victory Air Transport Services (VATS)

 

P.S. I splurged and bought myself a nice Bonanza with the extra profits 🙂

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  • OnAir provides many ways of completing jobs. You don’t always have to fly the whole job yourself and you don’t have to fly a job non-stop. You can fly a 2000NM job in a Cessna 172 if you like by splitting it up into smaller legs so you can refuel. You can even take the cargo or passengers part of the way and then have a hired pilot or freelancer take them the rest of the way. You can ask other users of OnAir to fly jobs by outsourcing them and offering a payment for completion. The only exception is that certain jobs require you, the company owner, to fly the job yourself. These are clearly marked with a little icon on the job pages (looks like a little joystick).

  • Never fly empty anywhere if you can avoid it, which most of the time you can. There are jobs almost everywhere and if you don’t find one going from a specific airport, you can search surrounding airports in the Logistic Center and chances are there will be a suitable job nearby (remember to enter all the search parameters like Range, max Cargo/Passengers and Direction). You can also search for jobs going to an airport by changing the Direction. If you plan ahead and are always on the lookout, you can usually make each flight with a full load which means more profit.

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  • If you purchased or rented a plane that you don’t have a certificate in yet, and it’s in a mountainous area, the checkride may be tricky to do. If you want to avoid this, you can do the checkride in another plane of the same type (for example: a Constellation has the same type as a small Piper Navajo) or you can have one of your pilots fly the plane to an airport with a more suitable checkride location (as long as they are certified to fly it, of course).

  • XP is only earned on flights that you do yourself, not by hired pilots, except for some missions (which give XP) that allow AI to fly them. The smaller the landing airport, the more XP you earn.

  • Have a long term plan, especially if you’re playing on survival. While you can become the next multi-billionaire when playing on the “regular” modes, in survival you should be prepared to spend a good amount of time planning, managing and flying if you want to be successful. Survival mode is not meant for people who like to rush to the destination, but rather for those who enjoy the journey. The leader boards will only be available to companies which are running in survival mode.

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It has some things in common, but OnAir is way bigger and way more complex. The biggest difference is that it is one world where everybody plays to the same rules. Online, real time, real weather. 

 

Check https://www.onair.company/ and you will understand it better.

 

 

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With horror I have discovered the usage costs on the homepage !!
these subscription costs are completely nonsensical and excessive !

 

Excuse me, but I am really perplexed...

I really want to know which reasonable person will get involved in such a rip-off...

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7 hours ago, Aviationgeek15 said:

So has it released yet?

 

Well, yes and no. If you got to https://www.onair.company/ you can just download the product and start using it without any limitation.  However we have decided to move the start of the paid accounts to Nov 13th (meaning that the 15 days of free use start at Nov 13th for all current users).  So basically 12 additional free days if you start now!

 

 

 

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