NMG Simulations is run by both Nico and Mariska Gagiano Visagie, hence the abbreviation NMG. We are a small home-based business which we run from our home address in Pretoria.
We have been in the Flight Simulator business for more than 30 years and we specialize in Prepar3D and X-Plane airport scenery that are being developed in house by ourselves. We are a small company, but we pride ourselves in our work! We dedicate ourselves in bringing you the best we have to offer with the support you need when you need it!
We hope you will enjoy your shopping experience with us.
SCENERY DESIGN HISTORY
Nico has been actively involved in the Flight Simulator industry since 1984. Scenery Design only became a reality in 1990 shortly after the release of the Airport and Scenery Designer package for Flight Simulator 4. The limitations of Flight Simulator 4 only allowed for airports in the US to be enhanced. True scenery designing on a global scale became a reality with the release of Flight Simulator 5 in 1993.
The first South African scenery package was born in 1995 and distributed as free-ware. Several versions of South Africa followed through the different versions of Flight Simulator. A complete free-ware South Africa scenery called South Africa Scenery 95 was released in 1996. It was designed for Flight Simulator 95, hence the 95 in the abbreviation.
A South Africa 98 package followed after the release of Flight Simulator 98 in 1998. The package featured all 770 publicly accessible airports in South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland. It was a milestone project for us. Some of the airports in the package, including the road system was designed by Johan Van Wyk. This package was released as free-ware too.
In 1999 shortly after the release of Flight Simulator 2000 we decided to go the commercial route. Our reason to ask for money was simply to cover costs on our side. Designing scenery involves taking photos and buying flight charts and airport information, which all costs money. At this time Johan Van Wyk decided that he no longer wanted to be affiliated with us anymore. He formed Aeroworx in order to preserve free-ware scenery design. We released two versions of the South Africa 2000 scenery for Flight Simulator 2000. South Africa 2000 Standard which was released as free-ware and a commercial South Africa 2000 Professional which included a detailed road system and upgraded airports.
South Africa 2002 was released in 2002 shortly after the release of Flight Simulator 2002. It was our first fully commercial version of the scenery. No free-ware version was made available. We also released a Mauritius scenery package for Flight Simulator 2002 which unfortunately did not sell well…
In 2004 the demand for higher detailed scenery became a reality. Flight Simulator 2004 had just been released. We quickly realised that covering the whole country with the high detail as expected from our clients will mean that we will have to release the scenery by province. That is why we started with the Western Cape 2004 scenery. The idea was that we will release every province separately as we complete them. Unfortunately, this was never realised. The amount of work and the detail associated where just too much. It would literally take years to complete the whole country! We did however release quite a number of packages, including our first stand-alone airport package; Port Elizabeth 2004! We realised that the only way to design high quality scenery was to design the airports separately with as much detail as possible.
In 2006 with the release of Flight Simulator X we released our airport packages separately. Every airport was designed with utmost realism in mind.
In 2009 we were asked by the Simuflight group of flight schools to produce a South African scenery package for their simulators which we did. That is how we ended up in the X-Plane market.
When Microsoft closed the Aces Studio in 2009 and fired its employees, it took the whole Flight Simulator community by surprise! This move by Microsoft effectively ended the 25-year reign of Microsoft Flight Simulator. No more future versions of the package will be developed ever! Fortunately for all of us, Lockheed Martin came to our rescue! They bought the coding for the Flight Simulator package from Microsoft and started to develop Prepar3D, pronounced as “Prepared”. Although the package is aimed at Civilian and Military Training, it does make provision for home use, but not entertainment use. This means that Prepar3D can never be used as a “game”.
According to the terms of the agreement, Microsoft was forbidden to ever release a package similar to that of Microsoft Flight Simulator again. Microsoft then developed “Flight” which was aimed to bring out the gaming side of flying. The package was released on the 29th of February 2012. The package was heavily criticised by the Flight Simulator and the Gaming community and turned out to be one of the worst mistakes Microsoft ever did! The package was withdrawn from the market four months later.
Lockheed Martin continued to develop Prepar3D and their latest version featured more detail than ever before! Many of the bugs in the old Flight Simulator X coding have been fixed. When Flight Simulator X become too old to develop scenery for, we will switch over to Prepar3D and continue to develop scenery for this package and future versions of it!
DEVELOPING SCENERY AT THE RIGHT PRICE
We occasionally get comments where our scenery is compared to “high-end freeware”, “not good enough compared to overseas products” and a whole lot of other comments. Over the years we have learned to take this on the chin so to speak, because the highest trees will always get the most wind.
We have 20 years’ experience designing commercial scenery for the South African market and by now we have a pretty good idea of what the average South African will pay for locally produced scenery. Yes, we can add more detail and we can increase the quality, but all that will do is to increase the price!
We tried designing an airport with all the detail we can master at one stage. The package was Port Elizabeth International which is on sale right now. The airport is more detailed than any of our other packages and it took us nine months to do! Yes, it really takes that long to design high quality scenery. We initially charged R400 for the airport which was inline with what the overseas design houses where charging back then. We sold a staggering nine copies of the airport over six months! The average client where just not willing to pay at that price, no matter how good it was. We need to keep the lights on over here and selling nine copies over six months will not do it!
Over the next year we systematically lowered price of the package to R250 where it is now and now it is finally selling. The point is that R250 is the maximum price the average South African client is willing to pay. Very few are willing top pay more. Unfortunately, the few that are willing to pay more will not be enough to keep the lights on for us. That is the reality.
Some may say, but why don’t you develop two versions: one high and one low detailed version? We tried that with our Lanseria International Airport package. We sold one copy of the low-quality version. People just don’t want low-quality scenery. They want scenery at an affordable price and that is where we are now.
In the end you pay for what you get. We know now what the average South African client is willing to pay and their preferences. We develop our scenery in line with that, trying to add as much detail as we can for that price, but there is a limit on what is possible for that price.
It is crucial to remember that we develop scenery for the South African market and not the overseas market. That is why our prices are all in South African rand. Our aim is to develop scenery that the average South African client can afford; not just the wealthy. It is therefore useless for us to have an extreme detailed airport that costs R500 and that only the wealthy can buy. There are more average South African buyers anyway and those are the ones that keep the lights on for us.
It is also important to remember that we continuously upgrade our airports. More than any other designer is willing to do. Most of these upgrades are provided for free and this must also be added to the final price that are being paid.
Now you know why our airports does not have extreme detail and we can only hope that this will finally answer the question.