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jonss1948

The Rising Cost of Flight Simming

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As with all commodities, the product is worth what people are willing to pay. Whether is PMDG, Flight1, Carenado, ORBX, FSDreamteam; if the community believes that a product is worth at or more than the addon's are priced at then products are purchased. If the community believes they are not worth the price charged then they are not bought.

 

Users of this community also have different budgets, some of us are students while others are retired.

 

The benefit to flight sim software is that it is more of a "sandbox". Consider that to other games, many console games have a set storyline and then you've beat the game.

 

Desktops manufactured seem to hover around $2,200, plus a few software titles a year flight sim is somewhere in the vicinity of $2,600-$3,000 every four years or so. At the same time, PCs have other uses than just flight sim. So at the very high end $750 a year with the hardware included, but that's if you only use the PC for flight sim exclusively.

 

Its pretty cheap considering the time I spend on flight sim, around 10-15 hours a week. Its about 750 hours a year, equating to roughly $1 per hour of enjoyment.

 

Only maybe netflix is a better bargain for entertainment.


Tom Bergman | Founder - Hemisphere Virtual Airlines | www.hphvirtual.com

"I just wanna tell you both: good luck. We're all counting on you."
 

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ORBX estimated that there were were only about 40,000 active FS enthusiasts worldwide in 2011.

I showed that only 20,920 active members of AVSIM who were  defined by posting at least once a year.

 

Both from  from a thread on Flight project cancelled/on hold in the Microsoft FLIGHT Archive.

 

Orbx, on 06 Sept 2011 - 9:36 PM, said:

 

Quote

 

mgh on 05 October 2011 - 04:00 PM said

 

Quote

(Note that was before the format of AVSIM forums changed)

I just find it puzzling that so few enthusiasts, worldwide can sustain such a burgeoning industry. Surely there are more than we know.

 

Jon

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I just find it puzzling that so few enthusiasts, worldwide can sustain such a burgeoning industry. Surely there are more than we know.

 

Obyx is likely to have a better feel for numbers than most of us - it actually sells add-ons.

 

My numbers 20,920 are factual based on AVSIM members posting. Many of active posts may use other flight simulations forums so, allowing for fact, may be result a factor of two which would give about 41,800. That's close to Orbx figure.

 

The only independent  evidence is that there were FSX 280,000 US sales in its full year sale. I guess that only a few of those will go on to become enthusiasts. the Orbx figures 40,000 suggest that would result in only 15% becoming enthusiasts.   That seems not unreasonal.


Gerry Howard

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I just find it puzzling that so few enthusiasts, worldwide can sustain such a burgeoning industry. Surely there are more than we know.

 

Jon

 

Not every flight simmer uses Forums and many on the Forums are actually not using Flight Sim anymore either. I have gone up to 2 years in the past without using a Flight Sim and still come onto AVSIM from time to time. Also so many people are just really happy with Flight Sim time and never see the need to go onto Forums ever.

 

For the developers this would be a labour of love, I am certain most of them have regular 9 to 5 jobs and developing is something they do on the side that brings in a little extra income as well. Flight sim is definitely a niche market


Matthew Kane

 

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Sticking to the facts, not guesswork, and avoiding the definition of pricing being solely by reference to PMDG, the average FS/P3d addon compared to ten years ago is very much cheaper in real terms - inflation throughout the western world has been approximately just below 50% since 2001. The USA does rather better than the UK but in the UK In early 2002 the typical launch price of an inexpensive aircraft addon for FS2002/2004 was equivalent to US $27. Today's figure would be around US $40 if extrapolated.

 

So in real terms most addons are launched at between the same price or a slightly lower price compared with 14 years ago, but on average take twice as long to design and have at least three times the sophistication, complexity and features. Now if you factor in the enormous drop in the value of the Euro which has lost up to 30% compared with its mean value from a few years ago, Euro based developers are actually marketing their products very much cheaper than they were a decade ago.

 

Addons become expensive when you buy a lot of them, but even if you purchased 10 of them on one day that still would not pay for a couple of flight hours in an actual, cheap, beaten up, single engined trainer at a typical UK airfiled, and that's not including your transport to the airfield, your club joining fee and all the associated expenses.When you finish your two hours you have nothing to show except two hours in the air. As pleasurable as that might be, you can go back home and continue to enjoy your addons for the next few years.

 

Some of our customers are still flying the original SF260 they bought more than ten years ago for $25 (the equivalent of $16.50 now). And they also get support anytime they wish. I hadn't noticed a flying club giving me life time support, almost 24 hours a day seven days a week as a result of a two hour training flight!

 

If you want to worry about inflation or cost of ordinary things then it is housing costs that have exponentially risen, which understandably people feel is unavoidable so they tend to pick on other things to blame.


Robert Young - retired full time developer - see my Nexus Mod Page and my GitHub Mod page

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I wonder how things will be affected both by Fsx on Steam and Dovetails upcoming sim.

 

Dovetail gets a bad rap on pricing for train addons, but I suspect they will still tend to drive prices lower than the current norm just because the influx on non-enthusiasts that will arrive if they are successful will likely laugh uproariously at the current asking prices. (not to mention how steam sales could affect overall pricing)

 

Will developers trade lower prices for potentially higher sales volume, or try to retain the market they are familiar with?

 

Whatever happens, it will surely be an interesting ride.


Just Flight Beta Tester
 
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Yeah, the prices are going up. I track that down to the more knowledge and capabilities in developement (did you ever thought that something like A2A´s AccuSim or the kind of detail in the PMDG 777 would be possible when FSX launched in 2006?). And with this come more and more time consuming addons to develope. Lets not forget that there are some lifes depending on developing addons.
 

I for myselfe don´t  buy anything which looks nice, I´ll check all reviews and videos available to stop me from getting some nasty surprise by not being as I expect.


Best regards, Steffen

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Fight time: NGX 737-700: 37,0h; -800: 47,2h

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I look at add ons as buying almost another simulator in itself. I have my budget and I have what I will and wont spend and honestly if you are smart and can hold off on impulse buying you can find some really good deals occasionally. 

Whether it's FSX, P3D or XPlane, to me they are just the canvas to the sim, the add ons are the colors and textures and I, within reason, am happy paying for my add ons.


msig3.jpg

 

 


msig7.jpg

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I look at add ons as buying almost another simulator in itself. I have my budget and I have what I will and wont spend and honestly if you are smart and can hold off on impulse buying you can find some really good deals occasionally.

 

Whether it's FSX, P3D or XPlane, to me they are just the canvas to the sim, the add ons are the colors and textures and I, within reason, am happy paying for my add ons.

sums it up nicely


ZORAN

 

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It's your hobby gents, enjoy it at whatever level fits your budget. B)


Best Regards,

Ron Hamilton ASEL

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The big difference between FS  today vs FS 10 years ago, is not really the cost of the addon itself, but the increasing number of high quality payware addons.  The freeware market is for the most part,  dead.   Ten years ago I could download 5 'good quality' freeware airports over a weekend.    Now I pay for all my airports.  Same with aircraft.

 

I can spend £100 to do  ONE hour of circuits in a rust bucket in RL or I can spend £100 on a highly complex payware aircraft which I will fly for countless hours during the next two years in flightsim...

 

I could spend £7000 on a 40 hour PPL from usually ONE airport , with lots of added cost thereafter  - or I could spend £5000 on a supreme FS setup which would get me hundreds of hours at every major and minor airport in the world for years.  Cost is relative

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If I do recall the price of Flight Simulator 2 by Sublogic for the Apple 2e was around $65 in 1983, about the same as FSX in 2006, so if anything this hobby costs less over it's 30+ year history when you factor inflation   :lol:


Matthew Kane

 

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I need additional disk space to accommodate my ever growing flightsim installation. Storage has become cheaper in time. So sinking cost.

 

But on the other hand storage cost adds to my total simming cost. So rising cost.

 

I am confused!!!   :lol:


What happened to AVSIM

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I don't know, everything looks slightly cheaper to me, but I'm in the USA so what do I know lol. Feel bad for anyone in AU. Last I checked the nice Carenado Stationair was a full $15 more expensive for them to buy. Ouch!!

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I don't know, everything looks slightly cheaper to me, but I'm in the USA so what do I know lol. Feel bad for anyone in AU. Last I checked the nice Carenado Stationair was a full $15 more expensive for them to buy. Ouch!!

Im relieved I bought 95% of my many add ons at OZ $ = USA $1 +

It would be very painful to start buying up now.


ZORAN

 

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