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Arwen

AviatorCast Podcast on DTG Flight School

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I just found this:

 

"On this episode, we get together with Stephen Hood, Creative Director at Dovetail Games. He walks us through the creative and thought process that went into building a compelling simulator to achieve such a task as this. Through this interview you’ll find that much care was taken with this community, with much thought and care being put into this new, experiential flight simulator."

 

AviatorCast Episode 83: Flight School from Dovetail Games w/ Stephen Hood

 

Interview begins about 7m30s in.

 

Enjoy.

Edited by tonywob
Fixed link
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Getting an 404 error.  File not found.

 

Best regards,

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Aviator cast has really improved over the last year or so with many excellent interviews with some really great people involved in real world flying and instruction as well as simulation.

Definitely worth checking out the back catalog.

 

gb.

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Sorry about not getting the address inserted corrected (I missed that the message insert link added the link// to the beginning of the address), and now I'm unable to edit my post. :)

 

Anyhoo, my intent was just to share the interview, as I was quite impressed with it, because it made me feel more excited about the Flight School.

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My favorite part is when he says "If the uninitiated jump into a flight sim, they can sometimes treat it like a toy. And I don't want that! I'm not looking to attract video gamers or arcade players. I'm not taking a slice out of the Call of Duty market and trying to get them into flight sim. I think there is a wealth of people out there who are looking to get into or back into flight simulation if there was a product out there that revitalized their interest" That should answer the questions of all those folks saying this will be some dumbed down arcade game. 

 

Interesting they are working with some former members of the ACES team. Those guys seemed to hold the key for what could have been a great future for MSFS so glad to see they are working with DTG now. 

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Sorry about not getting the address inserted corrected (I missed that the message insert link added the link// to the beginning of the address), and now I'm unable to edit my post. :)

 

No worries, I fixed the link for you in the original post. Thanks for sharing

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Interesting that there is talk about how diverse the world's flight schools are and the attempt to mimic this, yet a Piper Super Cub is said to be 1 of 2 planes available. There are no Super Cubs available for training at any flight school in the NYC area and most other major metropolitan cities in the world. I would be correct that one is more likely to fly in a C172 or one of 20 other aircraft than a Super Cub. If DTG wants DT Flight School to be taken as authentic, the Super Cub choice should be reconsidered (probably too late). In my view only students of bush flying may be presented a Super Cub limiting (not diverse) Flight School to a very small segment of aviation. If there were 10 planes then there would be no problem, but with a choice of only 2, a Super Cub is a very limited first choice according to reality.

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Pracines, I was thinking the same thing. The super cub is a fun option, but a tricycle gear c172 or similar would be my choice for a beginner.

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Maybe the Super Cub is in there to cater for taildragger lessons that you can follow after aquiring your virtual license in the tricycle gear Piper.

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A taildragger like the Cub is also very light and if the flight model is good, can go a long way to teaching that you are really "flying" an aircraft until it is parked. And, obviously, when you rotate a taildragger, gyroscopic effects come into play. Not that the Cub does it too much, but shadowing the tail surfaces and the subsequent reduction in control when in 3-point position and dealing with that is another important thing taildraggers can teach. All in all, something like a Cub can illustrate a lot of really important concepts in both flight and ground handling. Trikes are great trainers but they can hide a lot of the art of flying. And besides, there are two aircraft in Flight School. Do we know what the other plane is? Maybe it is a 172 or similar?

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And besides, there are two aircraft in Flight School. Do we know what the other plane is? Maybe it is a 172 or similar?

 

I believe it is another Piper, a tricycle gear.

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Well, so much for that theory, then. ;-) Maybe some licensing thing if they are both Pipers? But surely they can add aircraft after release if they choose.

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I found the podcast quite interesting however I strongly suspect that a lot of the really interesting stuff falls under aspiration and long term vision. On the 'Ask DTG' thread Martin has been going to great lengths to emphasise that the initial releases of Flight School & Simulator are start points rather than the complete vision that DTG have in mind.

 

To that end Martin's pitch seems to be along the lines of 'stick to your existing flight sim if we don't meet your immediate requirements, don't write us off straight away and keep us in mind for the future once further updates/upgrades have taken place'. Personally I think this is a wise line for DTG to take but I fear that initial deficiencies will prompt some avsim members to attempt a similar hatchet job to that which MS Flight ended up receiving.

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Personally I think this is a wise line for DTG to take but I fear that initial deficiencies will prompt some avsim members to attempt a similar hatchet job to that which MS Flight ended up receiving.

 

That would be an absolute shame. I'm convinced the Dovetail Games flight simulator due for release at the end of the year has the potential to become the true successor to FSX.

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I found the podcast quite interesting however I strongly suspect that a lot of the really interesting stuff falls under aspiration and long term vision. On the 'Ask DTG' thread Martin has been going to great lengths to emphasise that the initial releases of Flight School & Simulator are start points rather than the complete vision that DTG have in mind.

 

To that end Martin's pitch seems to be along the lines of 'stick to your existing flight sim if we don't meet your immediate requirements, don't write us off straight away and keep us in mind for the future once further updates/upgrades have taken place'. 

 

I think that's the attitude most of us will be taking. As someone who only flies bush planes and helicopters, I'm happy with what X-Plane gives me now. But I'm curious to see how this new DFS eventually turns out, and I'll gladly pick it up at some future date if it provides a different and/or better experience. I don't expect that to happen right away.

 

Personally I think this is a wise line for DTG to take but I fear that initial deficiencies will prompt some avsim members to attempt a similar hatchet job to that which MS Flight ended up receiving.

 

 

At the time, it seemed to me that most of the heat aimed at Flight was because the entire initial focus was "casual" flight entertainment, and it didn't show a clear path forward as a successor to FSX. That's what everyone wanted. Just the fact that all add-ons were developed in-house put a nail in that coffin. 

 

DTG is explicitly marketing their second product as a successor to FSX, with all that implies, including bringing in the necessary 3rd party developers. I think there are still some open questions about free user-made content and how that will be handled, but it's still early days yet. 

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That would be an absolute shame. I'm convinced the Dovetail Games flight simulator due for release at the end of the year has the potential to become the true successor to FSX.

 

I sort of agree, however we needed that "potential" 10 years ago. We needed, what DTG is going to do in maybe 4-6 years from now, 8 years ago. I truly do believe in cutting some slack, but really the only new thing we seem to be getting (over P3D V3.1 or XP10 64-bit) later this year is having to wait for something new. Flight sim veterans will need to wait for new flight simmers to catch up educationally and technologically, but when will that scenario ever end? Won't there always be newcomers and new ways to implement captivating ways to draw newcomers? Why can't a successor with added realism and more features be presented...so newcomers wont be overwhelmed?? With this logic DTG needs to forbid itself from advancing flight simulation, because DT Flight School will be irrelevant as soon a another idea comes up to make things easy for newcomers to be drawn.

 

The later to be released DT Flight Simulator seems to be taking the same approach; made for people new to flight simulation as they gain their DT Flight School license. And veterans who buy the sim will be compelled to buy the same add-ons all over again because newcomers don't have them and DT is accommodating newcomers this time around. Will these newcomers even stick around? If I can be promised that they will, then that is another matter because I do care about newcomers. This may be an easier approach for DTG and 3rd parties but the end users will again have to wait possibly another 10 years for something truly new.

 

All I'm saying is what about us veterans? We veterans who know that the technological possibilities exist and yet the next offering remains quite old. Granted 64-bit is very welcome, but we are still going to have to repurchase that PMDG, A2A, ASN, ORBX, and scores of other products for us to notice the 64-bt advantage. For some, possibly many, it will be the second or even third purchase for the same thing! Is there an end to this madness in sight? 

 

We veterans have already been in it for the long haul (just about daily since 1988 myself), but the last decade has been slower than a sloth, then we get something new and now we will be only as slow as another sloth. All for the sake of "potential" newcomers as DTG says, but I know bad decisions are being made behind the scenes by managers and marketers. This is how MS Aces was eliminated and the same will happen to DTFS if the same bad decisions continue. For example, a Piper Super Cub as 1 of 2 choices of aircraft in a flight school?! A very bad decision that could not have been made by a pilot or instructor, but by a non pilot manager who calls the shots, and pilots and programmers on the team cannot say a peep. If there were a choice of 10 planes, a Super Cub would be great, I enjoy my A2A Cub and have nothing against any Piper planes.

 

The flight simulation genre is in a state of stagnation for all the wrong reasons and that is why hatchets come out blazing - this is not a shame, its a good thing. We need to require developers and programmers to present new technologies, not be caking on the makeup. Flight sim development needs to make good sense and then the hatchets will be buried.   

 

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I am not so sure we can require any developer to do anything. DTG is paying for all this development and taking all the risk. Maybe it works for them and is a good product, and maybe it misses the mark. Nobody has to buy it if they don't like the approach, the compatibility, the scenery, the planes, or whatever. No sense raising pitchforks or hatchets. It's just not a big deal. And sooner is better than later, in my opinion. DTG is going to keep FSX going at least for some amount of time and all our add-ons will continue to work with it. I don't know that many had a thought when they bought scenery or planes that they should remain compatible with any future flight sims.

 

I'm just looking to see what they come up with and how it looks and flys. I also really like the Cub and there are a lot of new Cubs hitting the real aircraft market in the light sport category. Apparently it's a growing thing. The Cub may be entirely appropriate for Kitfox and Cub pilots to be.

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I am not so sure we can require any developer to do anything. DTG is paying for all this development and taking all the risk. Maybe it works for them and is a good product, and maybe it misses the mark. Nobody has to buy it if they don't like the approach, the compatibility, the scenery, the planes, or whatever. No sense raising pitchforks or hatchets. It's just not a big deal. And sooner is better than later, in my opinion. DTG is going to keep FSX going at least for some amount of time and all our add-ons will continue to work with it. I don't know that many had a thought when they bought scenery or planes that they should remain compatible with any future flight sims.

 

I'm just looking to see what they come up with and how it looks and flys. I also really like the Cub and there are a lot of new Cubs hitting the real aircraft market in the light sport category. Apparently it's a growing thing. The Cub may be entirely appropriate for Kitfox and Cub pilots to be.

 

Robert, you misunderstand what I mean by require. We have every right to email DTG with our requirements of anything they produce. We have the ability to win the argument just like we did with the MS Flight attempt. MS ACES decided not to listen to our requirements and they now do not even exist. So yes we can have requirements and if they want to stay in the flight sim business, they better listen to us.

 

There is great sense in raising pitchforks and hatchets when necessary. Its like if a vehicle you owned was supposed to be fixed and it was not, you would do what it took to get it fixed. But what if the mechanic said you have to pay again for the same repair, its time to "raise a pitchfork". Or do you just say its not a big deal. To people who don't really care about flight simming this is no big deal. But I heard this podcast make all kinds of claims and they have to do with long term, and so I gave my points that I made which are in opposition to the DTG strategy and I gave the reasons for it.

 

You are looking to see, where I already saw, that is the difference between us. Super Cubs will very rarely be a training aircraft these days, and a Cub will never grow in popularity even close to a C172. This is just a case where DT will take the easy route (port over the FSX Cub and mod it some) rather than the realistic route. If they were truly trying to offer a realistic flight training simulation for the 21st century, then a C172 with a G1000 would be among at least 7 airplanes, including a C172 steam panel, a Piper Archer/Arrow, Diamond DA20, SR20, C162, and maybe a Grumman Tiger....not a Super Cub. Airplane choice is only one of the obvious problems. Other problems cant be confirmed, because DTG is either afraid or ashamed to release any other facts or at least screenshots about a product that is said to be released at the end of next month (which is another obvious problem in itself)!!

 

The podcast told us that they have attempted to mimic a real life training program but we're given no further information about DT Flight School, its like what was the purpose of the interview...hype w/o substance.

 

To be clear, I want DTG to succeed, but I want them to succeed at making something great for flight sim veterans, however it appears so far that veterans have to wait another 10 years for something new.          

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Sure, you can tell DTG what you want and you should. But not everyone else feels the same as you or me. MS Flight isn't really a supported product now, is it? It was released in February 2012 and cancelled in July 2012. I don't think anyone won anything with that one. I don't see why threatening companies that veterans will put them out of business is useful in any way.

 

The car repair analogy is flawed if I even understand what you are trying to say. You bought a car, FSX, and sure it has some problems but it works fine. Now the company is coming out with a new car, DFS, and before it even hits showrooms you want to tell the company they are all wrong? Nothing about getting repairs to FSX even applies to DFS. There are other car companies anyway. I don't get the whole car repair thing. If you think they are doing it so wrong, then build your own sim and show everyone how it should be done.

 

And you have your favorite planes. Good for you. If they aren't in Flight School, maybe they will be in the overall sim the end of the year. Or maybe sometime after release. Saying they are afraid or ashamed to reveal the other plane is over the top. Maybe they just want to do a big splash at GDC? So what if you don't like their plane choices. Maybe you should wait to see what they are bringing to the table before declaring it rotten. Problems obvious to you may not even be problems at all and just figments of your imagination.

 

I'm also a flight sim "veteran". I started out with the Bruce Artwick/SubLogic flight simulator on an Apple ][. Let's wait and see and stop with the conspiracy stuff before pitchforks, hatchets, and bad analogies get raised too much. You want something new? So do I. Let's give them a chance and see how it goes before beating them up.

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To be clear, I want DTG to succeed, but I want them to succeed at making something great for flight sim veterans, however it appears so far that veterans have to wait another 10 years for something new.          

 

More like 10 months, when DTG Flight Simulator comes out. Flight School and Flight Simulator are two very different platforms. So I wouldnt lose hope on the latter. 

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I believe it is another Piper, a tricycle gear.

Though DTG hasn't confirmed, based on at least one of the promo shots, it looks like it maybe the Archer.

 

Well, so much for that theory, then. ;-) Maybe some licensing thing if they are both Pipers? But surely they can add aircraft after release if they choose.

 

DTG has made it clear, there will be no DLC available for Flight School. It's purpose is to provide an intro to flight through virtual lessons to the uninitiated as a spring board for DFS. 

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Robert, you misunderstand what I mean by require. We have every right to email DTG with our requirements of anything they produce. We have the ability to win the argument just like we did with the MS Flight attempt. MS ACES decided not to listen to our requirements and they now do not even exist. So yes we can have requirements and if they want to stay in the flight sim business, they better listen to us.

         

 

They did listen Paul. They have asked us what we wanted in a sim. I feel they are going in he right direction; the whole world modelled, a new way to render scenery, 64 bit, a possible overhaul of the ATC system and who knows what else. I truely believe their full fledged flight simulator will be the future platform for simpilots. I like the enthousiasm they share with us, I am thrilled they have committed themselves to be in it 'for the long haul'. Ofcourse we have to purchase addons again. But only if you migrate to the new DTG sim. And nobody is forcing us to do that  :smile:

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The proof will be in the pudding !

remember - to be a true a FSX sucessor you need a public SDK and the SUPPORT of ALL the community  !

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