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rcbarend

Worth upgrading to FS2004 ? An observation ...

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One of the FAQ's in various flightsim forums is: "Should I upgrade from FS2002 to FS2004 (a.k.a. FS9 / COF) ? "I personally believe this is an impossible question to answer objectively, since it all depends on how you percieve and use this PC application (game or simulator ?).A few points to consider (Yes I know, the list is not complete !)1. How many hours do you spend on flightsimming ?If you are a true flightsimmer (e.g. startup FS at least once every few days): why ask the question ? just go buy it.It probably beats every other investment you make in your life (in terms of spent hours per invested $).Did you ask yourself: is it worth to go to a movie, buy a DVD/CD, buy other PC programs, etc etc. ?By the way, this doesn't imply that you should immediately remove FS2002 from your PC. See other points.2. Are you curious about the latest state-of-the-art in flightsimming (which probably qualifies you as a "true" simmer as well) ?Examples: improved ATC and weather, Clickable VirtualCockpits, etc.See also point-1.3. How much do you spend on PC-hardware every 1-2 years (like upgrading/renewing) ?See also point-1.4. How much do you invest in all kinds of FS addons (like controllers, payware aircraft/scenery/tools, etc etc)See also point-1.I guess you get my point :-)FS2004 only costs a measily 50-60 $ !!On the other hand, buying FS2004 (with the intend of replacing FS2002) also has some downsides:5. You probably DO get some NEW issues (like you did if you upgraded from FS2000 to FS2002).Without debating whether YOU find those important or not:Examples: missing bridges (oops !), reduced (at least differently implemented) flight dynamics, video issues (probably depending on your system), etc.See the various forums. 6. Some of your favorites FS2002 addons may not work in FS2004 c.q. they have become payware for FS2004 (like FSUIPC and ActiveCamera). See the various forums. So: are you willing to invest in these "new" "favorites" ?7. Are you willing to spend all those hours again in tweaking your aircraft/panels/tools/scenery like you might have done for FS2002 ?As a sidenote: Personally I probably have spent more time in collecting/tweaking addons than actual flying.Again, this list of decision points is far from complete and PLEASE, don't attack me on the given examples.I just intended to put a few arguments into perspective which might help decide whether to buy FS2004 or not (either next-to or as a replacement of FS2002).Having read this, you may wonder: is this guy buying FS2004 himself ?NO, at least not at the moment (but probably in a few months, to satify my curiousity). But certainly not as a replacement for FS2002, and definetely not to follow the "hype".It's just based on my personal balance of the points mentioned above. Like I skipped FS2000, skipped everything between Windows98SE and XP, etc....Maybe http://home.planet.nl/~rcbarend/extern/fs9.htm gives some more background, if you're interested.Regards, Rob Barendregt

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Rob: Thanks for attempting to inject a note on perspective here. I've been spending quite a few hours the last few days as I await the arrival of my copy of FS9 from Avism/Vmax. I've flip flopped between elation at some peoples gushing about their experiences with the new platform and others near tragic expulsions because of the dastardly doings of the MS dimwits. I'm no techno wizzard and I was still burdened with the illusion that my recently (six month ago) newly purchased P4 1.8ghz w/768 DDR machine (I'm still paying for it)was going to be just what I needed to run this new sim. I've been disafected of that ida Ah well. But still. I get great pleasure just doing it.It's too bad about the FDE thing. Realism adds to the enjoyment and as someone somewhere in this forum said suspension of disbelief is the goal of the game. Perspective is reality.Best. :-)

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While reading this I tried to understand the logic behind it, as I have FS9 it is hard for me to grasp what your trying to say. I think if I was waiting for or considering getting FS9 and after seeing all the upside down posts of issues vs elation I would be of a similar mindset. It boggles my mind to see posts from users that can't get it to run, have graphic problems, have low FPS on high end machines, those that complain about missing scenenry, etc. When I got FS9 there were only a handful of users with it and a few had issues, which gave me only a little to worry about.I admit it is a bit hard to look at a post where a user is having a huge graphic problem and can't get no more than 4 FPS on a 3 gig machine and not think "they" have the problem, not the new sim. I installed mine without a hitch on an Athlon 1 gig machine, running a Radeon 7200 64 mb card with cat 3.2 drivers and XP pro. i made the few usual tweaks to find a good setting and found it very stable, fluid and the ability to have all sliders nmaxed, clouds default at 29%, and get good fps. I am in love with this version, it is the best thing since sliced bread FROM MY EXPERIENCE! I am a scenery designer and the visuals are important to me, this version delivers in many areas, while I am not an expert by any means on FDs, the aircraft "feel" buch better in their handling (regardless of the other post!!)I am a member of a VA and I have my own, I have done more flying with this sim since I have had it than I have done all this year, it is that enjoyable for me. I look at FS9 not as an extension of FS2002 but as another sim. Yes, there are issues and some of what has been posted is true, but it also depends on how important some missing bridges are for you, for me, it is not an issue. I post this to try and give a better view of the new sim to offset the negatives you see and hope it helps in the decision of a purchase. Try and look at it objectively and hope for the best. I thought I would have to upgrade to a new system to even enjoy it before I bought it, boy was I wrong.Regards, Michaelhttp://mysite.verizon.net/res052cd/mybannercva1.jpgCalVirAir International VAwww.calvirair.comCougar Mountain Helicopters & Aviationwww.cgrmtnhelos.com

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You know, I sounded almost exactly like that when I heard about the negative publicity people was giving FS2004. I was led to belive that my 1.2GHz T-bird with Radeon 7200 didnt have enough kick to run FS2004 (My system runs better with FS2004 than it did FS2002). After my friend nearly forced me to buy FS2004, I can say that I love it. Graphics look better, fps are better, has nice looking old planes, and that GPS rocks LOL. Of course it has issues, but FS2002 and FS2000 and before had issues with stuff too! While FS2004 is not nearly as backward compatible as we all like it to be, I guess thats the problem of having new features and different methods of doing stuff. Just imagine if FS2004 offered no backwards compatiblity like CFS3, it would be a total flop LOL.Me and my friend are pretty satisfied with FS2004, since both of us got the game, we have logged (lemme check my log.......) 25 hours flying across the US in various aircraft. It seems like flying VFR is a lot more enjoyable in FS2004 than it was in FS2002.Well enough of that LOL. Some responses to the points above:1) {grabs calculator}....Wow, I sim ~14 hours a week! I guess that makes me a FS Addict LOL. Yeah, yeah I have no 'real' life :-lol.2) I am always curious of new features in the newest FS even if its stuff I wont use much.3) Well as for PC Hardware, I have only spent 75 dollars on a new HD since my 40GB failed recently. Thats about it.4) Only real addon I invested in was FSNavigator, and a fix for FS2004 is around the corner. Oh yeah, I also payed 40 bucks for a new stick (my other one fell off my desk and broke LOL).5) Issues? Some aircraft are not fully compatible yet with FS2004 I noticed. I also noticed the 'issue' of turning on AI planes and 3D clouds and watching my fps drop like a brick (Ok ok, so thats not an issue LOL). Scenery has a few 'oops's in it, nothing too major though.6) As for FSUIPC, I dont really use it. Only have used it for recalibrating my joystick. As time goes on, I might end up buying it for FS2004 if its necessary. 7) I wiped my system and started from scratch (HD crashed right when FS2004 came out). I had a LOT of planes in my hangar, but the majority of them (like 7-8GB or so) I only flew like once or twice in. Its always good to have a good cleanout every once in a while. I'm not really interested in tweaking stuff either, if it runs, good, if it don't, I have a delete key LOL.Ok, ill stop talking now LOL.

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<>Hi Michael,Maybe I'll explain a bit further.1. The main point I am trying to make, is that the question "is FS2004 worth the upgrade" is an impossible question to be answered by someone else because there are so many aspects that might weigh differently per individual.2. Secondly, if one spends so many hours in flightsimming, don't hesitate just because the 50-60 $. Just put this amount into the perspective of your other flightsimming costs (and other real-life money-spending).Which is exactly why I'll probably buy it later on.3. Thirdly, if one intends to buy FS2004 as an upgrade for FS2002 (in the expectation that you won't use FS2002 anymore) there ARE some downsides as stated. Whether one finds them important or not, is again depending on the individual. But just realise them before you buy, and don't complain afterwards.If someone (that doesn't own FS2002 himself) where to ask me: is FS2004 a good buy, I would whole-heartedly say: Yes, every cent and more. I don't doubt for a minute that, in general, FS2004 is a better version of FS than FS2002. (in spite of the real problems that some individual buyers are experiancing, which is sad enough). But hey, what's new: that isn't any different than when ...../FS5/FS98/FS2000/FS2002 was introduced.Being a freeware designer of various types of addon's myself, I've got the idea that I haven't even explored half of the nice things I can do/expand/tweak to FS2002. And before having my whole FS2002 environment upto the same level in FS2004 (even if possible) would cost me hundreds of hours which I couldn't spend otherwise.Hence MY decision not to upgrade now (in MY personal balance of pro's and con's).Why do I spend effort in writing all this down ?Don't know :-) Probably for the same reason I design and release freeware, and spend many hours in supporting them.I like this flightsim community in general, and if it helps someone that has the same dilemma (buying FS2004 or not?) as I have/had: fine.If not, fine as well. I just wanted to show that there are other aspects to buying a new version of FS than "just follow the hype" :-)For what it's worth :-)Regards, Rob

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