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Guest Bonkey

ACES closure article

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Interresting article. Page 2 lists some features in FS11.http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/02/03/mi...lator_partners/quote:Version 11 was coming in a year and a half, which would have catered increasingly to a gaming crowd, not just the current enthusiasts and professionalPlanned features included voice recognition with air traffic control, first-person mode, a full fledged career mode with a job board and a currency system, a lighter-then-air aircraft class, and skydiving. "We were starting to focus more on the game aspect of it than just the simulation," the ACES insider told us.I would hope they were re-writing the gfx & terrain engine too. Not that it matters now.

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Interresting article. Page 2 lists some features in FS11.http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/02/03/mi...lator_partners/quote:Version 11 was coming in a year and a half, which would have catered increasingly to a gaming crowd, not just the current enthusiasts and professionalPlanned features included voice recognition with air traffic control, first-person mode, a full fledged career mode with a job board and a currency system, a lighter-then-air aircraft class, and skydiving. "We were starting to focus more on the game aspect of it than just the simulation," the ACES insider told us.I would hope they were re-writing the gfx & terrain engine too. Not that it matters now.
Everyone should read that article (even if it makes you feel like your dog died...)As a developer of add-ons, I'm still confident that somehow this will all work out for the best. Flight Sim Providence I call it.

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The future of Microsoft Flight Simulator isn't exactly rosy. If they start dumbing it down for casual gamers, then we've got big problems.

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Developers want MS to be clearer?MS completely shut down FS development and let go all related staff ....seems clear to me.It's over.

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Developers want MS to be clearer?MS completely shut down FS development and let go all related staff ....seems clear to me.It's over.
Well, it's muddy because someone at Microsoft stated that Microsoft is still committed to the franchise, but what they mean by that is very nebulous.Personally, if I had to put money on it, FS will come back as an X-Box title, and probably in a very dumbed down form.Hope I'm wrong.

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Well, it's muddy because someone at Microsoft stated that Microsoft is still committed to the franchise, but what they mean by that is very nebulous.
Actions speak louder than words.No development, no staff, no future.Can't see them selling it to someone either, that would have been done before letting the staff go.FSX will continue to have a shelf life but with a declining active user base and declining add-on interest.Add on interest seems to have declined already, look at the response to ManhattanX here, about 10 posts.I think MS seen the writing on the wall, and made the future clear.

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Do you have convincing evidence that interest in MSFS addons has declined? The fact that there have only been ten posts in the "Manhattan X" thread is hardly conclusive proof.

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Do you have convincing evidence that interest in MSFS addons has declined? The fact that there have only been ten posts in the "Manhattan X" thread is hardly conclusive proof.
Has Toshiba's dropping of HD DVD made sales of HD DVD titles increase?

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I am wondering now if microsoft just decided it was time for a four or five year haitus, and saves some megabucks besides at a time when it is needed. Here's the logic.1. DX-10 is a dog and years away from mainstream.2. 64 bit is years away from mainstream.3. A new direction in operating systems that aren't "water logged" is a couple of years away at a minimum.4. 8 to 12 cores is probably coming.5. Cycles per second is getting like "miles per gallon" (hard to improve on).6. Tileproxy syndrome is the wave of the future, and will require massive data transfers and processing.7. In FSX, with very good and dense road and air traffic, extremely complex scenery like Manhattan X, complex simultaneously running side-side add-ons, multiple monitors, and etc., any significant hardware improvements in order to move foreward is years away at a minimum.8. In FSX, with very good and dense road and air traffic, extremely complex scenery like Manhattan X, complex simultaneously running side-side add-ons, multiple monitors, and etc., any significant hardware improvements in order to move foreward is years away at a minimum.To put it simply. I think they may see that a fairly long term plateau has been reached. "It's time for a break and let's save some money too". It may be that they feel that there is a lot of catch up that has to occur before this sim can move foreward with significant changes.Bob (Las Cruces, NM)

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To put it simply. I think they may see that a fairly long term plateau has been reached. "It's time for a break and let's save some money too". It may be that they feel that there is a lot of catch up that has to occur before this sim can move foreward with significant changes.
Mmm... Though I don't think MS has made those evaluations, I think that all the points you made as well as your conclusion are quite valid!Marco

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Interresting article. Page 2 lists some features in FS11.http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/02/03/mi...lator_partners/quote:Version 11 was coming in a year and a half, which would have catered increasingly to a gaming crowd, not just the current enthusiasts and professional
Hi, Bonkey.Thank you, for the info. This just confirms what most of us, that are looking for a useful Tool, were afraid of. FSX is Not really a step up from FS9, when it comes to it's usefulness, and I am having a very difficult time trying to justify my time and effort needed to make it acceptable.It's just accumulating dust right now.FS11, if it ever comes out, may be one of the first sims, since PC sims started, that I will not be purchasing. TV

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Has Toshiba's dropping of HD DVD made sales of HD DVD titles increase?
No, but that doesn't answer my question. The analogy is that addon sales will decrease in the future. You stated that they were in decline now.

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ACES etc was disbanded to apease the BOD and stock holders.......period. MS' CEO has stated this publicly.So, it follows that any resumption of a future MSFS will only occure if it's determined that it will please the BOD and stock holders. End of story.

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ACES etc was disbanded to apease the BOD and stock holders.......period. MS' CEO has stated this publicly.So, it follows that any resumption of a future MSFS will only occure if it's determined that it will please the BOD and stock holders. End of story.
Yeap, its's all about money.RJ

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Microsoft as a company has been a jerk about this decision. I say, screw em. these miserable creatures are of the firm belief that the only stake holder are wall street jerks (who have shown their character to the rest of the world in recent time). They do not count their employees, their partners and their customers as stake holders that they need to communicate with. This is an unethical corporation being led by some unethical individuals on top IMO. Period!We need to look at building a new managed open source platform on a linux platform. where addon vendors can augment many of the details like scenery and airports and aircrafts.The default product needs to be a reasonable platform that is technologically sound with no more than 1 or two basic aircraft and very rough quality sceneryI would think the laid off ACES team has an opportunity here to start a venture company and try to get some capital. Who knows Bill Gates himself or Paul Allen could fund the venture. Why look for a job when you can start something on your own... Each one of the ACES folks have an intrinsic capital and good will that it wouldn't be very hard to raise capital.Manny

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Is the Dream Really Dead?Well, is it? Why would MS be advertising for this position if it were?My informed opinion is that MS has simply decided to "clean the slate" and rebuild a team centered on MS's long-term goals...Note the bolded text below to put at rest any supposition that it will be an "XBox360" title... :( http://members.microsoft.com/careers/searc...;SortOrder=DescJob Title: Art Management Job Category: Game Design Product: Games Date Posted: 01/30/2009 "Join the team responsible for building the most fun and rewarding flying experiences available on Games for Windows Live. Does working on a small, innovative team that delivers the most immersive flight experiences available today on the PC intrigue you? Our technology makes available entire continents - potentially the entire planet - for a detailed and dynamic 3D experience. We are looking for a Project Art Lead who can define, refine, and extend the visual elements while balancing the need for fun and approachability for a broad set of users."

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Is the Dream Really Dead?Well, is it? Why would MS be advertising for this position if it were?My informed opinion is that MS has simply decided to "clean the slate" and rebuild a team centered on MS's long-term goals...Note the bolded text below to put at rest any supposition that it will be an "XBox360" title... :( http://members.microsoft.com/careers/searc...;SortOrder=DescJob Title: Art Management Job Category: Game Design Product: Games Date Posted: 01/30/2009 "Join the team responsible for building the most fun and rewarding flying experiences available on Games for Windows Live. Does working on a small, innovative team that delivers the most immersive flight experiences available today on the PC intrigue you? Our technology makes available entire continents - potentially the entire planet - for a detailed and dynamic 3D experience. We are looking for a Project Art Lead who can define, refine, and extend the visual elements while balancing the need for fun and approachability for a broad set of users."
Yeah,, FlightSim might live on in Xbox, but they can keep that..I'm too busy playing the drums on the WII.RJ

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Yeah,, FlightSim might live on in Xbox, but they can keep that..I'm too busy playing the drums on the WII.RJ
What part of "most immersive flight experiences available today on the PC" was unclear? :(

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To put it simply. I think they may see that a fairly long term plateau has been reached. "It's time for a break and let's save some money too". It may be that they feel that there is a lot of catch up that has to occur before this sim can move foreward with significant changes.
I disagree. Although FSX is very good I don't think it's anywhere near what's possible on today's hardware.I tried the latest X-Plane demo recently and was impressed, with some reservations. Whatever your take on the flight model, control input handling etc. it is very smooth and gets good frame rates at high settings. Overall I would say it's less pretty than FSX, but I get the feeling that's more to do with the quality of the content (by which I mean the scenery, airplane models, etc.) than with the quality of the engine or the hardware we have available to run it.I reckon a great deal of the effort that went into FSX and its predecessors was involved in creating high quality content; the X-Plane development team is a lot smaller, and probably focuses more on the engine, therefore it is less "developed" in this regard. I'm guessing (hoping in fact) that it wouldn't take long for them to catch up, especially if third party developers start switching over.Colin

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Is the Dream Really Dead?Well, is it? Why would MS be advertising for this position if it were?My informed opinion is that MS has simply decided to "clean the slate" and rebuild a team centered on MS's long-term goals...Note the bolded text below to put at rest any supposition that it will be an "XBox360" title... :( http://members.microsoft.com/careers/searc...;SortOrder=Desc
This is strange indeed. If they wanted to keep developing FS immediately you'd think they'd have kept a few more of the original team rather than get rid of almost all of them and then hire more.
"Our technology makes available entire continents - potentially the entire planet - for a detailed and dynamic 3D experience."
"Potentially" the entire planet? FSX already renders the entire planet. Are they even talking about the same technology??Colin

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FS 11 more then likely will be on the Xbox 360 and maybe then to Windows. Ala Halo and a few others. Microsoft has not been doing to well of late in the gaming world. The Xbox 360 is a hardware dud (a failure rate of one in six according to a study by SquareTrade 2/08, plus a class action suit concerning the "Red Ring of Death" in California) and is losing ground in world wide sales to the Sony PS3 which costs twice as much and was released a year later. Bungie "we made you a billion bucks" developers of the Halo franchise, could not wait to get out and were very vocal about how Microsoft treated them. HD-DVD is going under due to Blockbuster and adult films being wowed by Blue-Ray, Microsoft backed the wrong horse and with no upscale media player on the Xbox 360, the console is at a disadvantage to one of the PS3 selling points. Vista is now Mojave or something but they won't call it Vista anymore, due to the all the bad press it already has. Plus it is costing millions in support and damage control. So with all this going down hill and the company still needing to make it's investors happy. They took the lazy way out. Aces got the axe because at that moment in time, they cost more then their product was making. Good people lost their jobs for 4% percent on the senior leaderships bonus check and for investors who could not quote yesterdays stock price for Microsoft.Brandon

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Planned features included voice recognition with air traffic control, first-person mode, a full fledged career mode with a job board and a currency system, a lighter-then-air aircraft class, and skydiving. "We were starting to focus more on the game aspect of it than just the simulation," the ACES insider told us.
Am I the only one concerned about this?granted with the demise of ACES this scenario will certainly not play out, but if that is the direction FS would be moving into (which they already tried a bit with FSX), then they sure as heck would have lost at least one custommer.just my 0,02$

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Am I the only one concerned about this?granted with the demise of ACES this scenario will certainly not play out, but if that is the direction FS would be moving into (which they already tried a bit with FSX), then they sure as heck would have lost at least one custommer.just my 0,02$
Although that may drive you and others away, it may very well bring more onboard or keep those of us already onboard spending more time using MSFS than we currently do.The whole idea, rather you take it as a serious hobby or just for fun, is to simulate, mind you not real, world of flying; just as much as many people take train sets as a hobby knowing all along that it is nowhere close to the real thing.Why would you think that by adding the ability to use your real voice to talk to the tower make it more like a game? Why would adding a career mode be more game like? Is that not what a lot of real pilots do in the real world?I personally have loved MSFS since the commodore 64, but just like my real world pilot friends say, flying, especially the heavies, can be a little on the boring side at times. Maybe that is why in the real world you have choices as in flying for leisure, acrobatic flying, and as emergency response piloting, red bull anyone?Even if you are a real life pilot, you should truly enjoy your work and have as much responsible fun as possible :)

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Agree with snekgiant. Although I may not use some of these features, I don't mind at all that they would be part of the package. It would widen the user-base and more copies could be sold which means more funds could flow back into development.

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Has Toshiba's dropping of HD DVD made sales of HD DVD titles increase?
Yes, initially and for a whole year after the announcement, because people looked for bargains. In fact, before the HDDVD demise announcement, I used to watched them only on the Xbox, but after that, I was able to buy the top of the line Toshiba XE1 player (which also plays regular DVDs beautifully) for a very low price, and shopped for about 60-70 titles, all under 10$, with many of them at 5$...However, the parallel doesn't apply here: it's not that HDDVD had a monopoly on the market or was supported by all the majors, even when it was alive. There was an alternative, Bluray, with more or less the same quality, and already had more titles and support from the majors, even when HDDVD was at its peak.

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