1. StoryForest

    StoryForest Member

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    Description of a Flight Simulation Center

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by StoryForest, Jul 5, 2019.

    I’m writing a little scifi story that revolves around a flight academy and need help describing the flight simulation center.

    In my mind, the flight simulation center is sort of like a video game environment where the students can practice flying via computer generated scenarios and screens. The simulator is also able to replicate things like movement, temperature, and sounds like an amusement park ride. It feels real because the students are able to practice inside a cockpit (that is replicated from the original flight vehicle), and the controls in the cockpit will respond just like the real ones would. (This is important because, in this scifi world, each flight vehicle is different with its own unique control features and designs. So sitting in one cockpit will feel different than sitting in another.) This is done through a bunch of “stations” where individual cockpit units can be “docked” in. The stations will provide power, data, and whatever else needed to make the simulation work.

    The style of the story is very quick and to the point, so I’d like to cover this description in 1-3 short paragraphs at the beginning of a chapter before the students begin their practice session. But every time I try to describe it, it turns out very long winded, boring, and slows the pacing to a halt. I even tried conveying it through dialogue but it still sounded contrived and forced. I know I’m not good with words but are there any tricks to describing technical environments like this? Perhaps I can describe some of it while the characters start their practice session, but I’d like to at least give the reader a visual on what the simulation center looks before the session begins. Can anybody come up with a smooth, succinct way to give the readers a “feel” for how the simulation center works without sounding too technical and boring?
     
  2. Spurs06

    Spurs06 Member

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    Could you post the description as it is written in the story?
     
  3. NobodySpecial

    NobodySpecial Contributor Contributor

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    Why not go to one? There's a flight school of some sort at almost every airport, even the small municipal ones. Tell them what you'd doing and they might even let you try your hand in the simulator.
     
  4. big soft moose

    big soft moose The Moderating Moose Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    ignoring the cringey voice over (watch with the sound off is my suggestion) the latter parts of this video show the USAF F15 simulator (or so it says, although the plane shown is an F22 raptor)

     
  5. StoryForest

    StoryForest Member

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    Wow, really?! I thought they would only let me in if I was working on some high profile project with security clearance and everything. This is just a personal little project, so I feel insecure about asking haha!

    Thank you for all the tips everyone, I'll also look at the video to see if it stirs any inspiration.
     
  6. Matt E

    Matt E Ruler of the planet Omicron Persei 8 Supporter Contributor

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    That's really cool.

    Scifi movies make us think that these things look like movie sets, with holodisplays, space-gray walkways, control panels, etc. In reality most facilities like this will look pretty boring on the face of it. Concrete floors, cables, safety barriers, regular push doors with exit signs, boeing logos, crates, tools, ladders, and equipment (all things I see in the external shots from that video). But the inside of the simulator itself is built to be super realistic. Everything is entirely practical. The simulator is also someone's work space. There's a person or multiple people who work there, maintain it, and know everything about it. It's a multi-million dollar piece of equipment (especially something like the one in that video) and is given quite a bit of respect and care.
     

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