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oliver1234

What does the Flight Sim Community really need?

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It's almost becoming an elitist hobby.

But only when you go adding the latest, greatest add-ons and hardware. It's easy to forget that FSX straight out-of-the-box is actually a pretty good introduction to flying which doesn't need expensive hardware. It's also inexpensive if you buy it in a Steam sale.


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I'd say we need beer wenches to hand me a beer while I'm flying but I would never say that because its a little sexist.  :Shame On You:

 

So I'd say we need promo girls to hand us beer while we fly.  :dance:

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But only when you go adding the latest, greatest add-ons and hardware. It's easy to forget that FSX straight out-of-the-box is actually a pretty good introduction to flying which doesn't need expensive hardware. It's also inexpensive if you buy it in a Steam sale.

 

But then you come to enthusiast forums and find that you aren't really simming unless you have the latest $200 plane (after all, default planes are disgusting toys for children) and of course you need the hardware to support that...... and off you go, into the ratrace to find a respectable place in the community hierarchy.

 

$3000 later..........   :rolleyes:

 

Congrats now you're a real simmer......

 

But you should still probably buy the....... (place name of numerous things here) for full enjoyment.


Just Flight Beta Tester
 
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And then they come out with their brand new 64 bit Simm's, Another $3000 Please ! - Johnman


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I think we could do with a bit more of the feeling of being there. Anyone who flies aeroplanes for real knows there's a bit of skulking around hangars, sorting out oxygen bottles, adjusting seats and ballast, drinking brews whilst waiting for stuff, sorting paperwork, kicking tires, towing things about and doing walk around checks. One or two FS add-ons have some of that as elements, such as Aerosoft's Dimona and A2A stuff has a lot of maintenance modeled, but one sim I really liked which went one step further with all that was Take on Helicopters, which actually has you walking about in a manner similar to a first person shooter game, where you can literally do the walk around and stroll to the offices and hangars. Personally, like most flyers, I like being around aeroplanes even when they are in the hangar. Perhaps a sim where you could get some oil on your hands might make things more immersive.


Alan Bradbury

Check out my youtube flight sim videos: Here

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That's the thing I suppose, flying a sim is such a lot of different things to different people, some people just want to dive in, others want to adjust every dial to within a millimetre. The diversity of it keeps it interesting, but I guess it also means what one person thinks we need, another might not want at all. :-)

 

Over and above everything, one thing we do need for sure is to not have the main sim people use be based on a sim that came out a decade ago (FSx). Yes P3D and FSxSE are tweaked up, but they are still based on a ten year old sim engine. The graphics are okay and they do the job, but they are really unsophisticated compared to where many computer simulations are these days.

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Alan Bradbury

Check out my youtube flight sim videos: Here

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Lots of thing that we want to have, the developers out there would probably already think about it. But in fact is restricted by the simulator(s) in different ways, especially the 32-bit platform. They can put more functions into the product, but because need to keep the low VAS, they have to think it twice. And of course, if the sim itself doesn't support, they can not do it.

 

So if we can get a better simulator, I believed many things can be done.

 

Being a real world pilot myself, I am still addicted to the simulator that lots of time I want to fly in the sim more than get into the real cockpit. FSX:SE still satisfy me.


Hoang Le

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How about an understanding that if you want the ultimate product with ultimate realism in all respects then you have to pay for it.

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David Porrett

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Working with a number of leading developers, speaking with even more, and understanding their financial and business investment to product flight sim software leads me to be very, in fact EXTREMELY supportive of their efforts.  In fact I can save without qualification that third party developers are responsible for the level of fidelity, immersion and realism that we are each able to enjoy.  I am an extremely qualified and experienced technical project manager (which includes business and business planning, contracting, life cycle (cradle to grave) product/system support.

 

So when I say that prices are too high, it should carry at least a little weight.

 

Hardware prices have been so high that I'm confident the prices strangle sales (in other words, sales would be higher if prices dropped).

 

The cost of some third party aircraft, and most all airport scenery may not be at levels that strangle sales, but I believe that they are about 20% to 30% too high and such a price reduction would result in increased sales and exposure for additional scenery sales.  After all, many quality airport scenery sell for a price that rivals what many people pay for the flight simulation software itself.

 

Over my 30+ years in flight simulation, it's been an exceedingly rare thing to see any type of package deals when purchasing different airport scenery produced by the same developer or sold by a distributor.  If price reductions are in the future, then this might be a way to get prices at least a little lower.  When one considers how many times an individual will fly in/out of an airport, the cost basis for the average airport scenery becomes even higher.

 

While the cost of third party flight sim software doesn't strangle itself on an individual basis, it probably increases the likelihood that people will not enter our hobby beyond the basic flight simulator software and a few addons.  Add computer hardware (because of the system it takes to run flight sim software with various addons), a yoke or good joystick, rudder pedals and throttle quadrant to the mix, and the price tag just for someone to get going in flight sim is extremely high. That overall costs has kept people I know away from the hobby.

 

Looking at this another way:

 

If someone shops for payware airport scenery, and pays $32 USD, they may well stop right there. But what if there was an incentative for them to get a second scenery for say 15 USD price reduction.  It's really a win-win, especially when we consider that revenue from another product has been generated. Sure, the customer has paid more, but truly received more.

 

The changes needed in our hobby can only happen via the distributors, and it's one that I believe will increase not only sales, but the number of people who enjoy our hobby.

 

Well that's my 2 cents/pence.

 

 

My very best wishes to everyone for a very happy, flight sim filled new year!


Dave-Aerosoft-Signature-500x125.png

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FS, like most other hobbies, is as cheap or expensive as you want to make it.

 

If you want all the latest, greatest stuff, payware sceneries, every aircraft addon ever released etc then sure, it's expensive.

 

I have a Navigraph subscription - fine, £8 a month. Apart from that, I rarely spend anything - in the last year I have bought precisely one aircraft addon - the FSLabs A320. A couple of years previously I bought the Aerosoft Airbus pack. I bought AS2012 when I upgraded from FS9 to FSX about four years ago, and upgraded to ASN at the upgrade price shortly after. Maybe one day I'll go to AS16, it's not high on my list. I buy the occasional addon scenery for places I fly to frequently but there's a whole world of freeware out there that is quite adequate.

 

Have any of you tried other hobbies lately? Flight simming is the only hobby I have where I can be a member of a club (VA) which doesn't charge any membership fees (and not only that but this is the expected state of affairs), it costs me nothing at all to fly (and no more to fly for 12 hours every day than it does for 30 minutes once a month, electricity excepted), I can obtain hundreds of resources and addons absolutely free of charge, I can access knowledge and read articles and be trained for free, we have online networks like VATSIM and IVAO - absolutely free of charge to the user.

 

How many other hobbies can boast that sort of value? Have you tried fishing, golf, sports clubs etc? How much does it cost to play a round of golf? I used to race model cars -- which is orders of magnitude cheaper than racing real cars but I could have bought a PMDG 777 every month (at the very least) by the time I'd paid club membership fees, transport, entry fees, spare parts (and there's no freeware there I can tell you!) etc.

 

I'm not sure why 64-bit should make things cheaper -- if anything the opposite as all it will do is make most of our hardware (as in PCs!) obsolete unless you're ready to go out and spend £££s on RAM, the latest video cards etc. Just look at X-plane - as far as I can tell OOMs haven't gone away, the difference is you just have to keep buying more RAM.


Simon Kelsey

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DaveCT2003, on 29 Dec 2016 - 9:09 PM, said:

The changes needed in our hobby can only happen via the distributors, and it's one that I believe will increase not only sales, but the number of people who enjoy our hobby.

Couldn't agree more! I understand that this is a niche hobby and that developement costs have to be recovered but often even a small drop in price can lead to more sales which actually makes more profit.

 

As far as 64bit goes, the whole of the flight sim world isn't suddenly going to jump from 32bit as soon as a new 64bit sim becomes available (as X-Plane has discovered). There will initially be very few add-ons available as developers wait to see how the market reacts - they're not going to invest in something which may not take off (no pun intended). The potential market will initially be much smaller than it is for FSX so the prices will most likely be higher. Because of the complexity of writing a 64bit flight sim from scratch, it's likely to take quite some time to iron out the bugs and resolve hardware compatibility issues. 64Bit will not be the instant remedy to all of the perceived problems that some people think and getting something that even starts to approach FSX in it's current, 32bit, state is still some way down the track. Remember that X-Plane has been 64bit forquite a while and still has only a small share of a small market with few commercial developers producing products for it. People tend to stick with what they know, particularly if they have a lot of money invested in it (and it works!).


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There is no excuse for 32bits any longer. Ram is cheaper now than it was in the past, per megabyte. I paid $5,000.00 for a 5Mb HD to put in a Dec Professional System 425 years ago, you can buy how many SSD's for $5,000.00? Had to have a man come in an hour early to feed 15 single sided 8" floppy's to boot the damn thing up. Oh, and the OS would not fit on that 5Mb HD You could not boot off of it!

As long as game developers can write easy single threaded apps and get suckers like us to buy em they will, trust me on that. Of course there are always a few exceptions. A few are coding 64bit apps AND taking advantage of multicore/threaded app., engines like the Vulkan DX 12 capable one.  Having sat on a few boards I can tell you until a cost/benefit ratio changes the boards and investors will happily sit there and watch as long as the cash flow excides expenses. The bigger they are the more pronounced that little factor is. Some of the developers that leave may be a blessing in disguise. Most likely they will be replaced by someone with a little heart as well as good business sense and ethics. MS tried Flight, it failed. Reminded me of my 2 year old grandkids when they watched that train show with the faces of characters on the front of the smoke box.  PMDG, FS Labs and a few others produce goods that have some value, they actually simulate something, or is the meaning of simulation foreign to me? LM provides a version of a commercial product for a price. it's easy to do so when you have already a commercial product developed. Slice a piece off and offer it for a good price for yourself, they are as interested in the average flight simmer as that guy on the moon. LM is a defense contractor, $500.00 hammers are the norm! 

I have written more than one post on VR. It's still in it's infancy I agree. It will soon be a viable system that actually simulates!!! You are there IN the cockpit not in front of a screen, I have been around long enough to see the difference between the many displays over the years as anyone else and can agree they are much better. However, in no way can you feel the emersion felt in VR. I know It isn't quite their, too new, blah, blah, blah, but it's coming, it wont be for the folks that suffer from motion sickness or vertigo. Gee, come to think of it, some of my friends  gave up real world private piloting lessens for that very same reason.  VR is amazing even in it's current state. Those who dable in FSX and Flyinside with the OCULUS or HTC Vive goggles know of what I speak of. If you have not done so you should not judge for 1 simple reason, he said/ she said don't matter. You need to it yourself. Like I did with my kitchen cabinets, I was told I could not afford wooden one's, too expensive I was told. So I built my own, and yes out of wood!

Best wishes

BaldyB

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Stable sim platform with addon specifications, that will not allow poorly constructed addons to run. This will, at least, mitigate the "must be your system" cop out that many users have to endure whan seeking "support" for their purchases.


Regards,

Graham Derreck

CYMM

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