For the last few weeks we've had the Vulkan/Metal version of X-Plane in a private test program with third party developers, letting them kick the tires to discover the limits and bugs in our plugin compatibility code.
While the initial bridge to connect OpenGL-based plugins to X-Plane worked pretty well, compatibility wasn't perfect and we had a few bugs. We also realized that we needed to change the design of that bridge to get much better compatibility. That rework of the bridge is now done and things are looking quite a bit better on all fronts.
We found one unexpected result from this redesign: when we finished rewriting the bridge, we ended up with code that could, in the case of Vulkan only, be used for 3-d drawing. This means we can now support OpenGL-based weather/cloud plugins from inside a Vulkan render, which we did not think was possible before.
The Skymaxx and xEnviro developers are in our private test program and have been great about jumping on new builds while remaining radio silent while we test this new tech. I am pleased to now be able to say: it works!
These pics are a special build of SkyMaxx running in 11.50 in Vulkan mode. No more having to pick - you can have your third party clouds and Vulkan at the same time.