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LuisFelizTirado

And just why are you so happy?

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This topic is posted the the Microsoft Flight forum, not any of the Flight Simulator fora or in Hangar Chat.

I make this clear from the start because a number of people just see the title of a thread on the main page and immediately jump in with their unpleasant comments.

Please do not fill my thread with that. This is the Flight forum where those of us who enjoy this game come together to share our enthusiasm, not to face conflict or to parcipate in angry discussions.


During the beta, I had the temerity to assert that Flight was the version of FS that we had always wanted. Some people, including my friend, Ramón, strongly disagreed. I was rather short-tempered with him at the time, because tempers were high and this is unfortunately contagious. Which is why it is important to not get upset in our community, to not bring anger into it, because otherwise situations rapidly degenerate and everybody becomes unpleasant.

Anyway, I am very sorry,  Ramón, and, now that we are at the darkest moment for the title, justify why I still believe what I wrote back then.


And just why are you so happy?

I would rather be happy than sad. I would much rather be joyful than angry. I really prefer to be positive and productive, not negative and critical.

Not everyone feels this way, clearly, but please forgive me if I do not get their point.

Since the start, Flight has given me a sense of joy like I have never had with previous versions of FS. At the very beginning, I stated that this was the version of FS that we had always wanted. Some disagreed, which is their right, but now after some months, I would like to reassert that statement and motivate it.

Performance

I remember a discussion about a dozen years ago on Miguel Blaufuks' site (simFlight) where Katy Pluta maintained that FS always required the most advanced hardware in order to run correctly. This made me very upset, not because she was wrong - FS has always been one of the best ways to benchmark hardware - but because I have never had the most advanced computers. I was effectively shut out from good performance with FS, like most users.

Now, for the very first time in FS history, I get very good performance with high or maximum graphics options and absolutely no issues. None. I can enjoy flying and never worry about blurry textures, tearing, stutters, jitters, and all the other things.

Of course, I understand that not everybody gets good performance, and a good computer is still required, but for most people performance worries are a thing of the past.

For this reason alone, I maintain that Flight is the version of FS that we have always wanted.


"I'm bored"

This has been a very common complaint from users and particularly from those self-proclaimed "real simmers" who like to pretend they are flying jetliners. But, as many of us have experienced, it is also very common to hear this from new users who find that there is really not much to do in FS.

Flight, and to a certain extent the two previous versions of FS, seek to remedy this by providing a wealth of diverse and varied activities.

Some have called Flight an arcade game because of this, but that is absurd. Arcade games are mostly about shooting things, so Combat Flight Simulator would have been the arcade game.

Flight's activities, for the most part, are the typical things that pilots would do - jobs, landings, sightseeing. Only the obstacle courses (Gold Rushes) can be considered purely game, everything else is related to flying.

Flight has gone very far in eliminating that common complaint of boredom that so many FS users experience (and which often leads them to spend more time in the Avsim forum than flying!)



Flight Model

The essence of a flight simulator is the flight model, how the airplane flies. Everything else is just "eye candy"! It has often surprised me in the past how people proudly claimed to be "real" simmers when FS aircraft have flown so badly, so unrealistically. Unstable flight models have been so common that in a not so distant past even some of the developers advised flying the airplanes with the autopilot! This was just unbelievable, but true.

Almost none of us have real flying experience, so many times users have thought that airplanes really were this difficult to fly. But, occasionally, when somebody takes an introductory flight at his local FBO, he comes back glowingly describing his experience, always saying how much easier it is to fly the real thing than it is in FS!

Now, I have never flown a real airplane or even been in a small GA aircraft, so I certainly don't know what it is to fly one. But, I do know that airplanes are designed to be very stable, easily maneuverable, and not particularly difficult to fly.

Flight is the best version of FS where I say to myself, yes, this could really be the way an airplane flies.  I repeat, I don't know anything about this, (but the users of FS are almost all like me and the game is made for us), and for somebody who has no real experience flying airplanes, Flight gives a very believable simulation of flying, the most believable so far.

See the world

If I just wanted to learn to fly, I would go to my local airport, pull out my wallet, and buy lessons. But FS is, in large part, a way for me to visit those parts of the world where I have never been (which is most of it!) And up to now, this has been impossible. FS did not realistically reproduce any part of the world, not even the USA.

Obviously, more than most, I understand the difficulties and limitations, including the lack of accurate data sources, the extreme complexity of the world, and the excessive time and effort required to create scenery. It was not possible to make a convincing depiction of the world.

Flight has come very close with its limited scenery. Certainly, Hawai'i is very convincing for those of us who have never been there. Not because it is completely accurate, this would be impossible, but because it is sufficiently detailed and varied that we can suspend disbelief. The scenery has finally begun to look realistic.


And there is more, of course. For example, the effects, the reflections and shadows, are compelling and realistic, as is the sensation of flying through dense clouds and fog.

Many people continue to think that Flight is totally different from previous versions of FS, that it is just a "game." As if FS was not just that.

But, they demonstrate their ignorance of Flight Simulator. Even a superficial examination of Flight will uncover the similarities with the previous versions of FS:

 

 - essentially the same file structure, mostly the same containers and buckets, easy to understand when one knows the previous file structure;

 - the same elements, internal and external airplane models, flight models, terrain, and world, often using the same files as in FS;
 - the same methods and processes, the LOD, the shaders, land and water class...
 - even the same issues, the same little problems such as terrain morphing, popping autogen, shimmering...

In truth, Flight is the next version of FS, it is FS 11 improved in many ways over FSX. Of course, the improvements, particularly the performance, have come at a great price - the loss of a lot of the content. But, honestly, did we really need packs of elephants roaming Africa, or dolphins and whales in the water? Some may regret the freeway traffic, but it was not particularly believable or realistic.

Of course, Flight is lifeless and multiplayer mode is very limited. With the limited content, a lot of people were going to be unhappy. But, we needed to show a little patience and the developers and artists were planning to fill the game out with more elements as time went on.

Yes, you are saying, "but, this game was canceled last year." I know, I remember, I was here when it happened. I was also here when FSX was cancelled and the whole dev team was fired. I also remember the cancellation of ProPilot, the FU and Fly series, Falcon, and also the end of Spectrum HoloByte and Microprose.

And yet, never, not once, have I been one of the despairing, the upset, the angry. All of these flight games have given me much pleasure over the years, and Flight, without any doubt in my mind, is the best ever. It is the version of FS that we have always wanted.

Hopefully, and one should never give up hope, some other brave (or is that foolish?) game studio will once again take up the challenge of making the best flight simulator possible and perhaps they will even succeed for a while. Possibly, they too will end up abandoning the title once it is clear that the demand for flight games, especially those concentrating on realistic depictions of flight procedures or ab-initio training curricula, is extremely limited.  After all, flight games will never sell as well as GTA5.

Until then, I will continue to enjoy what I have and hopefully so will some of you. Really, it has been a great ride and these games have just gotten better and better over the years.

 

Best regards.

Luis

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Well said Luis, I could NOT have said it better, not even close. I will have to read this again and again. I have said it so so many times. So I will say it one more time. As a real world private pilot who has not been current for about 25 years. MSFlight Is the only flight sim that really gives me that "seat of the pants" feeling of being there. C-150, C-172 and Grumman AA-5A.

The Grumman is a 4 seat low wing aircraft with a sliding canopy that reminds me very much of the  RV-6A.  :P :P :P :P :P

 

Steve

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Very good read Luis. I have a bit of real flight experience you could say. I can assure you that this sim has the most realistic feel of any I have used, outside of 90 million dollar full motion sims. I laugh at FSX fans who put down Flight as being a game and site the gold rush, but forget that the same thing is in FSX.

 

Moe

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Hola Luis

 

No mi estimado amigo, nunca lo tome mal.  Esa conversación fue en una etapa pasional y temprana del Beta. Esa frase fue en ese momento, en esa conversación.

 

You had (have) much experience in FS and scenery design and obviously you had a better understanding as to what was going on with Flight’s development. Since the beginning you appreciated all those little details that make a great scenery environment.

 

What did Flight bring to me?  In short Flight brought back the joy of flying.  I had forgotten how much fun I had when sim-flying Low and Slow, enjoying plausible scenery while riding a GA aircraft, all aircraft served different purposes and had a different personality. All those missions, aerocaches and even those gold rush runs were exhilarating.

 

After 25+ years in this hobby I had migrated to airliners, pushed buttons and followed procedureswhile looking at a fabulous cockpit or chart, Often flew real time Toluca <-> Madrid using a 737 with fuel stops or straight through using an A330, an A340 or a B747. My friends still do, but those days are over for me and now most often fly a Waco, just above tree top level.

 

No doubt in my mind that Flight was a major step forward in code design; in the long run default FSX had no chance against it. Unfortunately as I said in the last days of the MS Flight forums, we probably will never know what Flight or the development team were capable of achieving. We all lost

 

Everytime I restart Flight and do whatever, I really enjoy it all. The feel of the aircrat and some Hawaii and Alaskan areas are just magnificent, IMO not even closely matched by some of the most recent FSX add-ons.

 

Most of us who gave Flight a chance found out it was about flying, plain and simple. Just as any other flight simulator; it achieves a goal, and that is to bring satisfaction to the user while simulating a flight. No flight simulator is perfect; all have their good’s and bad’s.

 

As you, I don’t understand all this hatred discussions about flight simulators. Each of us is entitled to use whatever flight simulator we want, fly whatever we want and the way we want.

 

I liked your post, thanks for sharing.

 

Ramón

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Well said, Luis. Flight is the version of FS that we have always wanted. I'm not a pilot but I have a few hours in the right (or front) seat of several small aircraft. I've gently pushed a stick against the air pressure and felt the seat move under me and Flight is as close as I have ever come to that on a computer. I keep trying to abandon it but I can't. Incomplete as it is, it is still the very best flight simulator ever. I have a good computer, I do not need to tweak FSX, I have lots of beautiful Orbx scenery and wonderful aircraft. It all works well together and it can be challenging and fun. BUT the feeling, the thrill and yes, the joy of flying is in Flight. Honestly, I can be happy and content in my deluxe Cub flying up and down valleys on Kauai or landing on riverbanks in Alaska and at age 70, I really don't care if in a few years someone decides to make a new flight-sim. I probably won't be here. Now is when I am concerned about and now a PA-18 and an Island strip will do just fine.  One other comment and I'm done:  Boredom is self-inflicted. Always.

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Luis, great post. You got me thinking...

 

It's early morning and the mist is still lingering. I climb into my car and head off down to the small airport. It's been awhile since I was last in the cockpit of a real airplane and only have my memories to serve me. I vow to drink it all in and record every moment in my brain.

 

I meet my friend who is a pilot, we are sharing the costs because he is only interested in keeping his hours current, so said he will let me do all the flying. Well, maybe not the landing, but I accept that.

 

We do the walk around, and its time to climb into the cockpit. My heart is thumping with the anticipation. It's a sunny day with billowing clouds so ideal conditions. The cockpit feels so small, but the instruments are so familiar and I recognise them all. The engine starts and the whole thing vibrates with a slow thumping. Time to taxi. This is the first time I've had the opportunity to taxi out a plane to the runway and I thought that all the time I had spent doing this in a simulator would prepare me, but it didn't. I let him have the controls as I didn't want to crash the plane before we had gotten into the air.

 

He takes control of the power and rudder, but instructs me when to pull back on the stick and how much. I'm quite excited and its hard to watch the instruments and watch the view. Finally we are airborne, the controls are firmly I'm my grasp and its time to relax a little. I now have time to take in the instruments so can start to link them to what my hands and the plane are doing. We are off to do a small circuit of the local area because after all, we only have an hour. I am aware that 20min has already slipped by and that some clouds have billowed in front of us. My friend asks with a slight grin on his face "do you want to go into the cloud?" Of course, I reply. He mentions that he is only rated for VFR and before my face can show its disappointment he says, if we just sneak in and out, it will be ok. He lets me guide us into the billowing mass, its amazing. The whisps of cloud turn to fog and It starts raining. I'm simply thrilled. We dip in and we dip out and soon it's time to head back, as our time is up.

 

We land and say our goodbyes and as soon as I get home I fire up my flight simulator. Im let down, because again, only the instruments seem real. All this happened many years ago and my flight simulator was pre fs9 and the only thing that I recognised from my real world experience were the instruments. Bigger and better flight sims came along as did my adventures flying a real plane. Although, this never happened as often as I would have liked.

 

Time went by, then along came the FLIGHT beta. I remember getting the invite and dashed to my computer to download it. When I fired it up for the first time, I remember being hugely disappointed. It was already very late, so no time to explore it because it didn't let me do anything, just fly round some balloons. I turned it off in disgust. I was so angry and disappointed. I remember going to bed thinking, what have they done? It was only because I felt obliged to do testing, that I loaded it up the next day.

 

As the beta progressed so did my understanding of FLIGHT. Then that moment of déjà vue hit me. I had done all this before. I couldn't feel the deep long vibrations nor feel the motion but, I could feel one important thing... That I was flying. This is going to sound silly but one of the first things I did was head for the nearest cloud. I was not disappointed.

 

Overall, FLIGHT does what it says on the tin. It's still the best flying monitor around.

 

Personally, I'm glad I have my feet in both the FSX and FLIGHT camps, so get the best of both worlds. I cannot vouch for how good the flight model is for an FSX tube liner because I've not flown one. I do enjoy it however. I have flown a small plane, and know which feels the best to me.

 

Luis mentioned the similarity of the FSX and FLIGHT file structure. Perhaps the flight models are also similar but have been tweaked. Perhaps FLIGHT feels so much more realistic because of the huge performance gain over its older brother. Perhaps the developers took what was already their and simply made it better. After all, no point in reinventing the wheel. I'm not in a position to answer those questions.

 

P3D v2.0 is imminent and judging from what is known they have done to improve its performance, it looks promising. Whether it will capture that flying feeling, remains to be seen. If it doesn't, then who cares, because we always have FLIGHT which does that so elegantly.

 

Brian

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I agree with everything said. (in Flight i can feel the plane better than FSX eventho it hasnt got any FFB)

btw
There is something different with "simmers" than with normal gamers.

Simmers are like audiophiles, defending why their cables with recaramelised-supercopper-desert-shield-technology going for (200euro p/m) are better than your good audio cable you only paid 5 bucks p/m for.

Audiophiles usually find 3 factors a definitive indicator of "quality".

More "expensive/hard to get" is better
More "config/buttons/hard to set up" is better
More "strange/magical/crazy logic" is better

FSX does grant these three, Flight doesnt.

Flight is cheaper, has less buttons/config, and is less mysterious/more natural in understanding what is going on.

Flight was an imrovement as an absolute sim but a step back for the SimPhile community. (who likes paying 30 bucks for a dx10 update that is already integrated for free in Flight)

If both FSX and Flight would be made open source, Flight would be most definitely the place to start developing from.

(a similar problem exists with iRacing which is on steam-greenlight where many users have voted NO to get it on steam, because it would invite all the "Cheap-Gamers" to the sim and the "Sim" would lose its exquisite status, eventho getting another 10000 people joining iRacing would get the makers much more funds to make the sim/game a lot better, but that is somehow(according to the astralfield) not so important)

 

I enjoy Flight for all the same reasons you mentioned Luis.

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I recall when FLIGHT first came out a lot of people were complaining about the lack of support for toe brakes and TrackiR . I had never even heard of TrackiR at that time and had an old set of analog rudder pedals that I had not used in years. Well the Devs came back pretty darn quick as I remember and added support for both. Did they know something we did not? Anyway, I bought TrackiR 5 and a good set of new rudder pedals and do not regret it even through development was stopped shortly after I got them. I can't fly without them now, funny how things work out. Both add so much to any flight sim but especially MS Flight.

 

Steve

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I was already loving Flight and had mega-hours into it when I bought TrackiR 5.  The level of immersion seemed to double for me!  I will continue to fly Flight for a long time to come.  I would still recommend investing in TrackiR, even today.

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"P3D v2.0 is imminent and judging from what is known they have done to improve its performance, it looks promising. Whether it will capture that flying feeling, remains to be seen. If it doesn't, then who cares, because we always have FLIGHT which does that so elegantly.

"

 

If P3D v2.0 runs as smooth as Flight I'll be happier than a flying pig.

 

"Flight was an imrovement as an absolute sim but a step back for the SimPhile community. (who likes paying 30 bucks for a dx10 update that is already integrated for free in Flight)"

 

I laugh my a** off reading how excited people are to pay 35 bucks just to get shadows in the cockpit.

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Great read Luis. Agreed on all points. 

 

Having flown some real planes I can confirm that Flight hits the spot for flight models. Really great.

 

In my opinion, Flight will always have a special place. It's the reason I started flying real planes. I have it to thank for learning a lot about aviation and getting me into flight simming. It's never leaving my hardrive. 

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Hey guys, I'd have nothing against your positive attitudes making it into other forum sections. :smile:

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While I never did like FLIGHT, I am glad that some do get a kick out of it. It was never the lack of PMDG style aircraft that bothered me, but the fact that Microsoft never made a proper game out of it. I am probably the only AVSIM'er who are more into gaming than simulation. I'd rather have a fun flying game with excellent graphics than a true simulator with not so good graphics.

 

FSX was promising in the way it introduced missions and rewards. I wished that FLIGHT had build upon that foundation. Maybe adding a career mode where you could play a pilot character logging hours and earning rewards from missions and free flights.

 

The reason I never use FLIGHT now is simply lack of interresting scenery and aircraft to fly. If there had been more DLC I would still be a player.

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Someone in here has the ability to become an entrepreneur. The question is who?

If I became an entrepreneur, I may not be able to revive Flight. However, I may be able to go the same path of Flight (except making so many cockpitless planes). Make a very realistic Hawaii, and release 3 very realistic deluxe planes. If the sales are great, continue development, and release a country at a time. That's what I would do. 

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What put me off Flight was the marketing - just Hawaii and everything else download content including planes without a VC (which is about as far from the feeling of being there than is possible).

 

What was there was good however, could have beem THE SIM indeed ...

 

Which is exactly why most people were so negative, I suppose.

 

it could have been and it wasn't ,,,

 

Curiously, people are willing to spend hundreds of bucks on FSX to improve it ...

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