Welcome to Fox Two, or more accurately, a suite of software, consisting of Fox One, Fox Two, Fox Two Professional, and new, Digital Fox Two Professional, dedicated to helping you get the best out of your Thrustmaster controllers.
So what do these apps do then? Well, if you're a dedicated Flight Sim enthusiast, or hardcore games addict, then there's a damned good chance you'll be sitting in front of what many consider to be the best hardware for getting the most out of a game: Thrustmaster joystick and throttle controls. Now, unfortunately as with all computing, the more powerful something is, the more complicated it becomes. And programming Thrustmaster joysticks is, at first, not for the faint hearted and completely daunting when you first set them up. Thankfully, there are a lot of great apps out there ( Commander 2, EZ Build and Winstick) for helping you to develop the files the hardware needs with nice pretty graphical interfaces that hide the complexities of the text files they produce. Great!
Ok - this begs the question then - why have you developed yet more programming software? That's because if you're an old fogey like me, brought up on developing Thrustmaster files using their C&CC, Notepad or the superb UltraEdit, then unfortunately there aren't any apps out there that stay with a text interface. I've been flying flight sims for ... well ... I guess 16 years, and programming Thrustmaster hardware for about 10 of those years. I've always wanted a text editor more dedicated to my joysticks than general text editors. And hence, the idea for the Fox Two apps came about. And judging by the sudden popularity and success of these apps, it seems that there's a whole lot of us out there who prefer a text based approach with optional graphical components for our programming needs.
But James, Windows is all about graphical front ends. Aren't you going back to the dark ages taking a text based approach? Well no, not really. Let's face facts - Thrustmaster files are text files, and that's that. When you understand how they're put together, what everything in them means, then that's the only way you'll get the most out of your joysticks. So you do need to understand what's in them. Furthermore, a great way of learning how to do more advanced things with your joysticks is to look at the files that advanced programmers produce. Now, obviously the files you receive from them are text files. And if whatever program you're using hides the contents of these text files, how are you really going to learn how they do what they do? The beauty of Foxy is that you see the whole joystick file beside the macro file, and therefore you see the whole picture.
Also, because Foxy deals with the text files as text files, you're guaranteed that you'll always be able to load them up, no matter how complicated they get. There's one other advantage of Foxy. Namely, you can develop your files in the style of your choosing, using whatever graphical components you find useful. My whole philosophy is based on this - I in no way force upon you my style of doing things. Indeed, many of Foxy's features have been developed because you asked for them, or suggested better ways of doing things. I really want Foxy to be the software that we've all always craved for and needed. And what I don't want is for other people to go through all the heartache I went through in trying to learn Thrustmaster programming faced only with the C&CC software, Notepad and the various manuals. And judging by the e-mails you've inundated me with, I think I've achieved it.
OK, so I might try the text route ... but is Foxy any good? Well, don't ask me ... :) ... take a look at what other people think about it here, or read this independent review of Fox Two the freeware version.
Stop press: Read the review of Fox Two Pro by CombatSim.
And don't be frightened of a text based approach. I bet after all you've got a word processor on your machine - imagine how slow that would be to use if you had to do everything with a completely graphical interface! Text editors are fast - believe me - and Foxy will have you generating your files quickly and effortlessly. You'll never go back to a graphical interface again I can assure you. Go on, give it a go .... you're going to be pleasantly surprised :)
Please note: The screen captures on this site are all from Fox Two Pro. Click on an image to see the full sized image.