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Steam X-Plane debacle

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This is a shout out to anyone over at Laminar, who may (and I hope) read this.  A kind of public shaming.  

 

First, thanks for getting X-Plane on to Steam.  It was an accomplishment for sure, especially with the Greenlight vetting process.  

 

But now what?  Well, there is nobody from your company helping out or moderating in the Steam forum.  Guys are asking for help with their systems and software.  People have sales related questions or are complaining about the pricing.  There are no "stickies" offering tips or clues.   No links to other support forums,  nor any mention of the great community mods out there.   It's like someone took the time and energy to run a marathon, but quit at the 25 mile mark.   I've been dropping hints here and there for your potential customers, but don't know why I am bothering.  Isn't that your job?  Don't you want X-Plane to become successful?  Steam is unforgiving, because once you ignore or ###### off the users, X-Plane will be finished.  There are many examples of that.   

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On the other hand, some of the comments I've read are borderline ridiculous. One "person" was complaining that there are "no animations" for heaven's sake!

 

Another complained that he couldn't get the engines on the space shuttle started... <thud!> :blink2:

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Steam opens up a new customer base of people that to be honest aren't really Flight Simmers.....They are looking for a turn-key experience and Flight Sim is far more complex then that.

 

Same will most likely happen when FSX makes its way onto Steam as it will be sold to the Steam Masses who never really bothered with Flight Sim before. A handful will get hooked onto it but many will not be able to figure it out.

 

We are a niche market.

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On the other hand, some of the comments I've read are borderline ridiculous. One "person" was complaining that there are "no animations" for heaven's sake!

 

Another complained that he couldn't get the engines on the space shuttle started... <thud!> :blink2:

That's only to be expected from a community that consists of gamers of all kinds, of which very, very few are "serious simmers", or even potential ones. Unfortunately the process of turning potential into actual is not helped by Laminar's or Aerosoft's apparent disinterest in giving support. Also we have the usual militants screaming out the "IT'S A SIM, NOT A GAME" mantra in the face of everyone who "doesn't get it", which isn't helping one bloody bit.

 

Having XP10 (and soon FSX apparently) on Steam is a great opportunity to reach out and get some fresh blood into the flight simming community, and as expected it's being handled in the worst possible way.

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Having XP10 (and soon FSX apparently) on Steam is a great opportunity to reach out and get some fresh blood into the flight simming community,

 

Ive heard that analogy for 20 yrs and it never changes. Those involved or interested in a Flight sim/game first and foremost have a love or interest in aviation and not Zombie gaming! Besides is there something wrong with us "Old Blooders"?  We are the ones buying the addons.

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Having XP10 (and soon FSX apparently) on Steam is a great opportunity to reach out and get some fresh blood into the flight simming community, and as expected it's being handled in the worst possible way.

 

Let's be realistic for one moment.  Flight simulation is a not something that is consumed by the masses (rather that's good or bad [it's good; we're special]).  Flight sim enthusiast seek it out because of a love of aviation in one shape or form.  A platform such as X-Plane is by no means accessible to the average casual gamer,  pure and simple.  A gamer perusing STEAM for a serious flight sim would seem a bit odd to me.

 

In short: X-Plane will be inaccessible and darn near unmarketable to the masses -- in current form.  We're a niche market for sure.  "Appealing to the masses" might bring in revenue but as is evident in "FLIGHT", can seriously damage the experience for more hardcore simmers.

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Whatever the case, any flightsim that is released, in this scenario, where it would otherwise not fit (like steam), I believe - can spread the word about flight simulation, better said, introduce this category of software onto others that may not know much or anything about this.

 

As a few have already mentioned, most users on steam are gamers looking for point and click games, most commonly, first person games, and pretty much any (if not every) flight simulation software is far from that.

 

Looking around in the simulations library of Steam, many of the 'simulation games' there, aren't based on realworld, unlike X-Plane. I don't know how X-Plane will do, but overall it seems this is not a bad opportunity for flight simulation software.

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Honestly, I think that having ported X-Plane to Steam was a bad idea.

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i don't think this "Steam" thing will actually bring some fresh blood to the community. Aviation isn't for everyone. The fresh blood by definition is looking for the community. It's not being "bring"

 

Hopefully Steam will give LR some financial boost though

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i don't think this "Steam" thing will actually bring some fresh blood to the community. Aviation isn't for everyone.

 

I completely disagree.....it is the 12 to 13 year old kids out there that discover something like FSX for the first time over Steam and become hooked.

 

I was 12 years old when I got a crack copy of FS1 on a 5.5" Floppy Disk I traded in the school yard and when I put that in my Apple //e I was completely hooked.....I never knew about it before I traded it and it forever changed my life....43 years old now and still hooked.

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I completely disagree.....it is the 12 to 13 year old kids out there that discover something like FSX for the first time over Steam and become hooked.

 

I was 12 years old when I got a crack copy of FS1 on a 5.5" Floppy Disk I traded in the school yard and when I put that in my Apple //e I was completely hooked.....I never knew about it before I traded it and it forever changed my life....43 years old now and still hooked.

+1

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X-Plane's future cannot be found on Steam.

 

And kids get hooked by aviation elsewhere. And IF they got hooked, they'll manage to find XP and FSX outside of Steam.

Edited by olli4740

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Hi, for a non english speaking what does mean going Steam for a product (FSX, X-plane) ?

Thanks alot, Serge

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I completely disagree.....it is the 12 to 13 year old kids out there that discover something like FSX for the first time over Steam and become hooked.

 

I was 12 years old when I got a crack copy of FS1 on a 5.5" Floppy Disk I traded in the school yard and when I put that in my Apple //e I was completely hooked.....I never knew about it before I traded it and it forever changed my life....43 years old now and still hooked.

I fully understand you, though, time changes. Those kids are already spoiled by heavy 3d engines and games. XP/FSX (out of the box) fails in comparison (graphically-wise) to mainstream 3D softwares nowadays. If the mentioned above kids haven't been in close encouters to actual aircraft i really think they'll have thought time being hooked. Of course exceptions exist but are in really rare cases and shouldn't be considered in that kind of calculations

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X-Plane's future cannot be found on Steam.

Disagree, think it will do fine on steam it bring in new users, and fresh blood and viewpoints are needed in flight sim world. 

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I fully understand you, though, time changes. Those kids are already spoiled by heavy 3d engines and games. XP/FSX (out of the box) fails in comparison (graphically-wise) to mainstream 3D softwares nowadays. If the mentioned above kids haven't been in close encouters to actual aircraft i really think they'll have thought time being hooked. Of course exceptions exist but are in really rare cases and shouldn't be considered in that kind of calculations

 

Still no different today then it was back then...The most popular games was Lode Runner, Skyfox, Montezuma's Revenge etc and FS1 appealed to a niche back then as it does today. Just because we are at Nvidia today doesn't really change anything. Some kids prefer mainstream and other kids want to explore a little more then that.

 

FSX today would appeal to a 12 year old in the same way not only because of Aviation but the development possibilities that it can bring as well.....It would take years for a 12 year old newbie to get the full potential out of it and some would prefer that over the mainstream genre.

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Let's be realistic for one moment.  Flight simulation is a not something that is consumed by the masses.

Everyone comes from "the masses" initially. There are currently over 65 million users on Steam, of which at least 4 million are online at any given time and contrary to what some people here seem to think not all of those are 12 year olds stuck on Counterstrike. Realistically there has to be a handful of people among those 65 million who just haven't discovered flight simming yet.

 

That said I don't think XP10 is the right piece of software to do it. FSX will most likely fare better, at least if they put a reasonable price on it.

 

 

(rather that's good or bad [it's good; we're special])

 

Yeah, we're definitely special in some way...

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I stopped looking at X-plane's Steam forums as they are too toxic and the requests have been ludicrous, I can't get 100 fps on full max rendering. Then you have the experts who were using XP7 and believe XPX is the same. Oh well maybe with the new influx of $$$ they can expedite some feature requests...not.

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How could X-Plane being on Steam be anything but a good thing for the flight sim community?

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Hi, for a non english speaking what does mean going Steam for a product (FSX, X-plane) ?

Thanks alot, Serge

 

Steam is an online distribution platform/store that sells games and other software (primarily games). It was started by Valve Software, who are most noted for their Half Life, Portal, and Left 4 Dead series of games. It's HUGELY popular.

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I have to agree with the OP:  There needs to be a presence in some capacity even if you just crown a bunch of people who have good reputations "Community Ambassador's" like so many industries do nowdays to do it.  Having the same toxic idiots going "ITS NOT A GAME ITS A SIM" is not helping in the least.  I have X-Plane I am slowly learning it and once Verizon replaces my router so I have access at home again I am at least going to try and help with what I learned trying to learn X-Plane and answer questions in a reasonable way.  But they need some ACTIVE moderators there to at least keep some people in check.  I don't care if its Prepare3D, FSX, X-Plane, or Farming Simulator-If people are trying your product then you need to put on a good face or you will get buried in short order.

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If you think X-Plane is getting no support at Steam from it's developers, just wait till FSX is released, LOL!

 

I wonder how much support Microsoft, or should I say, Dovetail, will provide...  :rolleyes:

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X-Plane's future cannot be found on Steam.

 

And kids get hooked by aviation elsewhere. And IF they got hooked, they'll manage to find XP and FSX outside of Steam.

Disagree, Steam is THE digital plattform for games.(i think a sim is a game). Anyway there are a lot of badly accessible hardcore games on Steam and not only games like CS. Today it is not enougt relasing your game only on DVD.(more and more PCs/MACs didn't  even use a DVD Drive).

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Everyone comes from "the masses" initially. There are currently over 65 million users on Steam, of which at least 4 million are online at any given time and contrary to what some people here seem to think not all of those are 12 year olds stuck on Counterstrike. Realistically there has to be a handful of people among those 65 million who just haven't discovered flight simming yet.

 

That said I don't think XP10 is the right piece of software to do it. FSX will most likely fare better, at least if they put a reasonable price on it.

 

 

 

Yeah, we're definitely special in some way...

 

Fair enough. I can only speak from my own personal experience.

 

Haha aren't we though?

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X-Plane's future cannot be found on Steam.

 

And kids get hooked by aviation elsewhere. And IF they got hooked, they'll manage to find XP and FSX outside of Steam.

 

The only reason I know about Flight Simulators at all was because I was younger I saw in target a Flight Simulator for Windows 95 disk I bought to play because it looked neat and I liked planes.  Now days try and buy a PC game in the store; its all hidden object puzzle games and a few of the AAA titles.  You won't "stumble" upon some gem randomly anymore.  Steam is where that is at with their huge sales people buy games they normally wouldn't and they discover things that way.  There is no downside for X-Plane or FSX to being on Steam its just another place to get it.  There are many friends who I tell they should try them and they are all like "Where can I download it" and once you explain to them it needs to be bought and shipped to them its like a wall went up because too much work.  Yes its lazy and what not but people like Steam.  A lot.  Look at the numbers in this thread.  That is why these deals were done even for FSX a title which MS has essentially given up enitrely on except in this one single aspect.

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