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Flight Club FAQ

  1. Can I buy a stand alone version of Flight Club ?
  2. May I get a copy of the source code for Flight Club ?
  3. After downloading the source I get : Error - class XCGameApplet not found. Why ?
  4. Do I need a plug-in to play Flight Club ?
  5. Your applet keeps crashing my browser. What can I do ?
  6. Why is the game is stuck in DEMO mode ?
  7. Can we make a simulation of our local flying site ?
  8. Is Java3d API necessary or OpenGL ?
  9. Have you considered making a multi-player version of Flight Club ?
  10. May I change the 'z' and 'x' keys (my keyboard is not QWERTY) ?
  11. What developement environment do you use for writing Java code ?
  12. May I put a copy of your applet on my website ?
  13. Do you plan to write a non web simulator with better graphics ?
  14. How exactly does the spacebar work ? Is it a toggle or something to hold down ?

  1. Can I buy a stand alone version of Flight Club ?

    Yes. The cost is 10 (ten pounds sterling) or 15 euros. I accept cash, UK cheque and international money orders. Please include your email address with your payment and post it to:

    Dan Burton, Flight Clubhouse, Flat 24 College Green, 55-57 Barrington Road, Brixton, London, SW9 7JG, ENGLAND
    Alternatively, if you are a *geek* you may compile your own version of Flight Club from the source code. See the next question (2).

  2. May I get a copy of the source code for Flight Club ?

    Yes. This is an open source project. You are free to download the source and use/test/develop it as you wish. If you get stuck after downloading the source read the next question.

  3. After downloading the source I get: Error - class XCGameApplet not found. Why ?

    The source code needs to be compiled. Are you a geek ? If not, you should probably read the first question above (1). If you are new to Java programming then welcome aboard ! You may download the java compiler (~40Meg) from java.sun.com. Install the SDK. It will come with instructions on how to do that. Remember to update your PATH enviroment variable. Next, in a DOS box/terminal go to the folder where you have unzipped the Flight Club source and type

    
    javac -target 1.1 XCGameApplet.java
    
    

    Look in the folder and you should now see the source files (*.java), the compiled object code (*.class) and a html file called hg_popup.htm. Open hg_popup in your browser. Bingo ! You now have your own copy of Flight Club running locally on your machine.

    If the above sounds like lots of hassle then read the first question above (1).

  4. Do I need a plug-in to play Flight Club ?

    No. Flight Club is written in Java which usually comes with the browser. Just make sure that Java is enabled in the advanced settings of your internet options/preferences.

  5. Your applet keeps crashing my browser. What can I do ?

    Java applets run best on Windows in Internet Explorer 5+. Mac users should install the latest version of Mac OS Runtime for Java (MRJ). If on Linux try using either Konqueror or Mozilla as your browser.

  6. Why is the game is stuck in DEMO mode ?

    You must click on the applet (to give it the focus) before you press 'y' to start playing the game.

  7. Can we make a simulation of our local flying site ?

    Not yet, but have a look at the plans for phase two, code named Site Builder. Perhaps you (or your club ?) could make a donation to help fund the programming and hosting costs of phase two.

  8. Is Java3d API necessary or OpenGL ?

    No, the applet uses my own 3d graphics routines.

  9. Have you considered making a multi-player version of Flight Club ?

    I'd like to build a multi-player version to run over the LAN. However, given the arcade style speed of the game and the slowness of I/O over the NET I'm not sure it would work well over the NET. Remember, this is an open-source project. I would be very happy to see someone else take on the task of building the multi-player version of Flight Club. For the time being, my priority is writing the Site Builder applet.

  10. May I change the 'z' and 'x' keys (my keyboard is not QWERTY) ?

    Yes. Download the source code and edit the file GliderUser.java. Edit the keyPressed and KeyReleased routines - insert the required ascii codes in place of 122 ( for 'z') and 120 (for 'x'). Next, recompile the class. Job done !

  11. What developement environment do you use for writing Java code ?

    I use emacs, a command shell and the java SDK 1.4.0. My OS was Windows but is now GNU/Linux. I have ranted about the virtues of going open-source. In my web log I talk about Mandrake's distribution of GNU/Linux.

  12. May I put a copy of your applet on my website ?

    Please send me an email with a link to your website and ask first. Basically, if the site is non-commercial and you respect the GNU General Public License then no problem; though a donation would be nice. ;-)

  13. Do you plan to write a non web simulator with better garphics ?

    No, HangSim is already a very good simulator with realistic graphics. My little applet focuses on the decision making process involved in flying cross-country. Flight Club's graphics will always be *low-tech*; there will be a even fewer polygons when the game runs on PDA's and 3g phones !

  14. How exactly does the spacebar work ? Is it a toggle or something to hold down ?

    The spacebar is niether a toggle nor something you hold down. Just hit it when you think you are in a thermal. If you are in a thermal the glider will start to circle. It will continue climbing until you press z or x; or until the cloud you are under decays. If you are not in lift the glider will shake its head and then resume normal flight.

    By the way, if you are in ridge lift then pressing the spacebar will make your glider start to ridge soar.

    Don't rely too much on the space bar. Pretty soon it will be available only in training mode. To compete in the league you must find those cores yourself.


Dan Burton <danb@dircon.co.uk> | latest update: 28 July 2002