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ahinterl

Any indication in which direction the travel goes in flight simming?

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FSX has gotten aged these days, no hope for a successor from Microsoft, Prepar3d and X-Plane are around - and I wonder in which direction flight simming as we use to know it is heading in the future. Addon developers need to make revenues, currently we see products for either of the beforementioned FS alternatives. I miss a common consense in this respect, maybe it's still too early for a "general decision". What I cannot think of is that companies like PMDG (provided they'll get their Prepar3d licensing issues sorted out one day) will develop for both sims. I'd rather suppose developers have to make a decision for only one sim sooner or later... Any comments on what we can expect?

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I guess the best thing to hope for is something to come out of the blue and knock us over. There is still life in the old girl, but despite all the makeup (addons) she can't hide her age. What is evident from visiting these forums is that despite all the wonderful addons being made FSX can't handle the load.

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I expect to use FSX for several more years unless Prepar3d v2 offers me a compelling reason to change. Addons are still being made for FS9 as well as the three you mention. Some people have mentioned that addons for XPlane may be problematic due to the nature of the quickly changing code.

 

It's unlikely that PMDG will ever develop for Prepar3d. I may be wrong.

 

There are other contenders, although some may disagree: DCS and the open source Flight Gear. AeroflyFS might be a good choice as well. Microsoft Flight showed considerable potential, but development was cancelled. Some members of the Aces studio formed their own company, but we haven't heard anything from them in a while; maybe they're working in secret. :)

 

My hope is that there's a shop in Russia developing a civilian flight sim that will blow everything else out of the water. These guys do some fantastic work and don't mind working in niche markets.

 

Hook

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What we would all love to see happen, and could under the very best of circumstances, however unlikely as the 'very best' doesn't get that way very easily is...

 

...for a big chunk of the development community, from core engines to peripherals, to get together and define and create a mission statement for a new simulation engine, based on a 6-10 year cycle for the core, and built w/ all the features needed, established by consensus of what matters in a flight simulator, going forward. Exploiting modern hardware is prioritized, SDK's robust enough to give huge incentive to 3PDs to build for knowing the killer engine is there and isn't going anywhere but forward, and the core engine contains the basics needed to pull it off: ultra high resolution mesh, autogen over satellite photoreal scenery (this stuff exists already in Google Earth/Maps), a weather engine that exploits wind effects on cloud formations, the rest TBD.

 

Cheers!

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What I cannot think of is that companies like PMDG (provided they'll get their Prepar3d licensing issues sorted out one day) will develop for both sims

 

Actually I think add-on companies need to support as many platforms as possible in order to make more money on their investment. It takes a bit more work to separate your development units into re-usable parts and platform-specific parts but in the end you can sell more units.

 

Free-to-play, download-on-demand, micro- and medium-transaction models are a great way to get your product out to the masses and reach people of all different budgets. MS Flight had the right idea. They just don't seem to support large scale data though. They also need to advertise their product in a way that appeals to faster action-paced people too to get more revenue in micro-transactions.

 

At the other end of the spectrum, in order to get my money, the game needs to support realistic flight models, gauges, and world-wide ATC, geography, and procedures. I'd pay handsomely and incrementally to add on each of those capabilities if Flight supported them. I paid handsomely just to improve these in FSX.

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They also need to advertise their product in a way that appeals to faster action-paced people too to get more revenue in micro-transactions.

 

How much advertising do you need to do if the base game is included with every desktop install of Windows 8? People would click on it the same way they currently click on Solitaire or Minesweeper. Then they'd try flying beyond the main island, and might decide that it would be worthwhile to buy the rest of Hawaii, or might opt for a couple of aircraft just for fun. These are people who wouldn't care about cockpits for the most part, so getting a P51 without one wouldn't offend them a bit.

 

Unfortunately, that's not going to happen. Even with development cancelled, it would still generate income. But it's not going to happen. The only hint of why came when I asked about it on the Flight beta forum and was told it would take a year to convert to RT (or whatever it's called).

 

Hook

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RSR from PMDG seemed fairly upbeat about the medium term in the interview he did in the fund raiser for Tony from PC Pilot. No details, obviously, but it appears something is going on. It was an interesting hour and twenty minutes if you're not one for dissecting every inflection. Probably torture for those who do, but there is no helping that...

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