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FSDSxTweak is a freeware set of tools for Abacus Flight Simulator Design Studio version 3.5.1 and above (FSDS). They allow for editing of advanced materials and aircraft properties which FSDS does not natively support (such as bump mapping, VC self-shadowing, bloom, etc). It is currently in version 2.8. Although it is intended for use in FSDS, it can be of benefit for GMax developers also (particularly the new reference parts and modeldef_edit).

FSDSxTweak works by running the .x file generated by FSDS to generate a new .x file, which is then compiled using XtoMdl:

Fsdsxtweak pipeline.jpg

Tool Suite

The FSDSxTweak version 2.8 suite consists of four tools:

  • fsdsxtweak.exe: All that is required to tweak models is this tool. It is command-line driven and reads plain ASCII text config (KFG) files that define the tweaks to apply.
  • FSDSxTweak_Plugin: This is a plugin for FSDS. In order to facilitate the use of fsdsxtweak.exe, this tool allows for single-button-press compilation of models. It is effectively a graphical front-end to fsdsxtweak.exe, and also adds some extra housekeeping tools:

Fsdsxtweak plugin 28.jpg

  • FSDSxTweak_Edit: This tool allows for easy creation and editing of the tweak files used by fsdsxtweak (KFG files). It allows for fast easy editing, and reduces errors associated with syntax errors found in hand-edited config files.

Fsdsxtweak edit 28.jpg

  • Modeldef_Edit: This allows you to edit the modeldef.xml file which defines animations in the model. Modeldef_edit provides a simple graphical interface for adding and editing custom animations to the model.

Modeldef edit.jpg

Major Features

The following major features exist in v2.8:

  • Easily attach effects, landable platforms, carrier arroestor wires and catapults, and library objects to your models
  • Define visibility, mouserect and nocrash nodes
  • Access to all FSX material properties (Can change base colors, base specularity, add bump maps, specular maps, etc. and control bloom parameters)
  • Addition of more than a dozen new reference parts in FSDS allows for easy creation and placement of camera definitions, fuel tanks, engine locations, etc. which are written directly into the aircraft.cfg file.
  • Automatic computation of gear compression to prevent 'wheels sunk into ground' problem.
  • Enable VC dynamic shadows for DX10 models
  • Add new model custom animations to a model

Support Forum and Development Blog

The manual (which is also included in the download) can be downloaded separately.

Support, information and tutorials can be found at the Freeflightdesign.com FSDSxTweak Forum. The author maintains a development blog with updates.

Downloading FSDSxTweak

The latest version of FSDSxTweak can be downloaded from the follow sites:-

End User License

FSDSxTweak is released as freeware, although the author appreciates screen shots of models produced with the tools. Models created with FSDSxTweak can be released for free or commercially.

Development Roadmap