At first I thought that the Abacus 787 looked promising. I hadn’t looked at any reviews so that they wouldn’t influence me. The exterior of the plane is very nice. The main problem is that the wings seem to be at a slightly higher angle than expected on the ground, but overall nice detail.
There are some parts that are perhaps slightly out, but overall very nice. However, the same can’t be said for the cockpit. Don’t get me wrong, they have done a pretty good job with the instruments panel, there are some options and they look like the real deal. However, they do seem to be a bit rushed and a bit computerised. They are easy to read and look at but they don’t seem as smooth as other add-ons. Then there is the overhead panel. If you look at in 2D, it is the same as in 3D. It is very low on buttons and there a lazy mistakes. Such as spelling smoking wrong – they spell it ‘No Smokeing’. In both views it is a poor 2D representation of the real thing. I know that the 787 is very computerised, but not this much. You get few buttons and rotary switches and it looks ugly. Don’t let this put you off though.
The overall 3D cockpit is perfectly nice and looks pretty realistic. The chairs look nice and there is even a HUD, in both the 3D view and the 2D view. I say that but it is nothing special. It is basically a green, even more basic version of the standard display, still, nice touch. I was though, disappointed with the pedestal. The radio panel is awful. It, like the overhead, is in 2D and looks stupid and lacking in detail.
Then there is the flight control. I had trouble getting up to full speed on many runways at large airports. I also found it too slow to react and clumsy, some may like that but I don’t. As I have stated before, these add-ons are not being tested on some super computer. It is a computer than can handle most things easily and is a really good tester for seeing how frame rate intensive an add-on is. I’m afraid to say that this add-on will use every part of your computer. I tried doing a short flight with this add-on and had to turn down basically every option to make it run smoothly. It is hell. This could be because it is quite detailed on the exterior and there are many liveries to choose from. Having said this, I have run more advanced add-ons that look better and a generally better and I had no problem on this computer. In essence, this is lousy.
So, who should buy this add-on? Should anybody? Well, a big problem is that this is pretty much the only 787 add-on for FSX available, so if you want a 787 add-on you can buy this or wait until a better one comes out. I do believe that Abacus could easily make a much better 787 add-on for FSX, but the problem is that they don’t have any competition. Who is pushing them to make a better product. They know that if you want a 787 add-on, you’re stuck with them. I would recommend buying this product up to a point. If you don’t have some sort of super computer, I am afraid to say, forget about it. Don’t waste your money unless you are prepared to turn down all the graphics. If you do have a super computer, wait. If you are desperate, I recommend finding a freeware version, there are some defiantly out there. If that doesn’t work for you, buy this.