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ComSimPilot

Why scenery developers focus on MSFS instead of P3D?

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Hi all,

We lately see a huge stream of MSFS scenery being released by P3D developers. At the same time I fail to remember a recent P3D high quality scenery/aircraft being developed or announced by the top aircraft/scenery developers. This makes me wonder. Do you think the presence of MSFS will stop development for P3D?

And my view on this is: I really hope not! Why? Because if scenery developers think that the majority of their customers are people flying default aircraft I bet they are wrong. Even at compelling prices I don't have any need to buy a quality airport hub if there are no top quality airliners like we have for P3D.

So, except their conversion process to port MSFS sceneries from P3D is very fast and cost efficient, I think they lose their time focusing solely on MSFS. Besides, something to note on this conversion process. If you look at all add-on sceneries sold for MSFS and ported from P3D, there is an ugly ground layer on top of the taxi and runway lines. It looks like they use an MSFS SDK for ground textures that seems unrealistically glued on top of their line/ground label textures. I think you have all see what I'm talking about. So could this MSFS releases be an opportunity to sell without spending much on new development?

So my request to scenery developers is that P3D is still the platform that they should focus in my opinion until quality add-on aircraft for MSFS are released. Or at least develop for both P3D and MSFS. The latest absolute focus on MSFS and absence of P3D announcements of new airports is worrying and I think for their long P3D customers is not welcome. 

Edited by ComSimPilot
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I think most developers realize so many of us have already bought the products they make. So in order for new sales they have put most of their focus on msfs. P3dv5 is still my primary sim. The only airport scenery missing that I really want is Indianapolis. Shocking that hasn’t been made. But we still have new scenery and airplanes coming.  The tfdi md-11 will be fantastic 

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33 minutes ago, ComSimPilot said:

If you look at all add-on sceneries sold for MSFS and ported from P3D, there is an ugly ground layer on top of the taxi and runway lines. It looks like they use an MSFS SDK for ground textures that seems unrealistically glued on top of their line/ground label textures.

What you are seeing, is likely the visual disconnection between the sim, which has a 100% PBR graphic engine, and ground polygons made with Projected Meshes ( which is a feature that allows for a faster conversion of ground lines of existing sceneries ), which didn't supported PBR before the current patch. So, the non-PBR ground polygons looked a bit of of place compared with the rest of the sim. This is history now, since starting from the current patch, Projected Mesh support PBR but, of course, in order to see the effect, the scenery must be updated. I cannot speak about other sceneries, but our Chicago O'Hare was converted to support full PBR on ground the day after the patch was released, and now it looks perfectly integrated with the rest of the scenery, because the 3d modeling was already 100% PBR, even in P3D4, that's why it converted so well in MSFS.

 

Quote

So, except their conversion process to port MSFS sceneries from P3D is very fast and cost efficient,

It's fairly fast ( if you know what you are doing ) and cost efficient, and the scenery will look good and even better if it was born as a full PBR scenery.

It's also fairly fast ( if you know what you are doing ) and cost efficient, and the scenery will look plain or even bad, if the scenery wasn't designed for PBR.

 

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So my request to scenery developers is that P3D is still the platform that they should focus in my opinion until quality add-on aircraft for MSFS are released.

To do a QUALITY airport, it takes about a year, possibly more. Some quality airliners will surely be out by that date, and the airports won't go anywhere. It would be a mistake to "wait" for those, unless we could magically conjure an airport of of thin air.

And of course, you are assuming scenery developers are "deciding" things and try to convince you to do something. It's the OTHER way around. USERS drive developer's choice, and users means only one thing: SALES.

If your stance of not buying airports for MSFS because there are no airliners, translated into buying MORE airports for P3D in the meantime, and the majority of users shared this attitude, we would should have seen an INCREASE of sales of P3D-only products. Or, at least, not a drop.

What do you think it happened, instead ?

That's the reply to your answers. Users buy ( or not ). Sales drives development choices. Users are always right. Developers only follow.

Edited by virtuali
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The answer is very easy: MSFS is a huge market and this platform will be the future of flight simulation - if you like it or not.... 

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2 minutes ago, LarsA said:

The answer is very easy: MSFS is a huge market and this platform will be the future of flight simulation - if you like it or not.... 

1. "MSFS is a huge market" Yes

2. "This platform will be the future of flight simulation" Do you have the numbers for the lottery too?

Edited by ttbq1
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Ramon De Valencia

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Part of the problem is that we've all already got a 737NG, 737-200, A320, A330, A340, 747-400, 800 etc for P3D, so are we seriously gonna buy another one for it? Whereas we've got no high end ones of any of these for the new sim, so if we were gonna buy one at all, it would be for that. And the scenery goes where the big payware airliners go, because people want a realistic JFK or Heathrow for their super-realistic 747.

Having said that, what we don't have is an A350, or an A380, or a 727, or a 707, and a few others. So I suspect that any savvy developer will be currently working on how feasible it is to have a working methodology whereby they can make one of these which could be developed up to a point where it can then split off to be finalised for both sims.

A 3D model is a 3D model regardless of where you want to use it, so it can be used in either sim, and the research for making one obviously also works for either target, so this is not a big issue. Likewise texturing, which may differ in format for end usage, but the image production itself is again able to be purposed for both. This is why it is comparatively easy to make scenery for MSFS; well over half the work is already done for a large number of airports.

Where it becomes harder is the avionics and systems and how these have to be made for each sim, but again some aspects of this could be produced in a manner which solves the problems in making these for either sim before finalising what is done for each individual platform. In this way, providing a suitable methodology can be found which does the bulk of the work in a way which is fit for more than one application, then what is good for one sim will be good for the other. 

We've already seen that this is at least a somewhat feasible approach in that an XPlane Kitfox made it into MSFS and a P3D Cessna 182 has also crossed the divide. The fact that MSFS is flavour of the month does not mean those other sims have ceased to exist, people are still buying stuff for other sims and in particular, they are buying stuff which works across them all, for example FS2Crew's new Pushback Express is an example of that.

Edited by Chock
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Alan Bradbury

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16 minutes ago, Chock said:

 ....an A380,...

Would that be classed as "bloatware"? 🍻:biggrin:

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Mark Robinson

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Just now, HighBypass said:

Would that be classed as "bloatware"? 🍻:biggrin:

By me certainly; the A380 is a big ugly fat biffer. It's technically impressive and it's pretty awesome when you see it up close, but annoying when it pushes back at EGCC because they stop traffic coming around the end of the pier at stand 10 owing to its wing overhang, which is irritating when you're rushing to get a bunch of LDs over to the remote stands and you have to wait for it. But for all that, it would be a fun aeroplane to try in a sim and apparently ANA have been keeping theirs busy throughout the pandemic, so rumours of its demise seem to be a bit premature.

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Alan Bradbury

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It is always about the money.  One has to go where the profit is.  Everyone is doing a business.  It all comes down to supply and demand.  If the demand is there in MSFS arena, then that is where the devs will go.

Flight sim is still a niche product and developers gotta eat also.  Some of these addons do take time.  Do you see any major developers making products for FS2004 or FS2002 these days? 

Also the graphics in MSFS is just mind blowing compared to old school p3d .

Edited by Skywolf
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1 hour ago, virtuali said:

What you are seeing, is likely the visual disconnection between the sim, which has a 100% PBR graphic engine, and ground polygons made with Projected Meshes ( which is a feature that allows for a faster conversion of ground lines of existing sceneries ), which didn't supported PBR before the current patch. So, the non-PBR ground polygons looked a bit of of place compared with the rest of the sim. This is history now, since starting from the current patch, Projected Mesh support PBR but, of course, in order to see the effect, the scenery must be updated. I cannot speak about other sceneries, but our Chicago O'Hare was converted to support full PBR on ground the day after the patch was released, and now it looks perfectly integrated with the rest of the scenery, because the 3d modeling was already 100% PBR, even in P3D4, that's why it converted so well in MSFS.

 

It's fairly fast ( if you know what you are doing ) and cost efficient, and the scenery will look good and even better if it was born as a full PBR scenery.

It's also fairly fast ( if you know what you are doing ) and cost efficient, and the scenery will look plain or even bad, if the scenery wasn't designed for PBR.

 

To do a QUALITY airport, it takes about a year, possibly more. Some quality airliners will surely be out by that date, and the airports won't go anywhere. It would be a mistake to "wait" for those, unless we could magically conjure an airport of of thin air.

And of course, you are assuming scenery developers are "deciding" things and try to convince you to do something. It's the OTHER way around. USERS drive developer's choice, and users means only one thing: SALES.

If your stance of not buying airports for MSFS because there are no airliners, translated into buying MORE airports for P3D in the meantime, and the majority of users shared this attitude, we would should have seen an INCREASE of sales of P3D-only products. Or, at least, not a drop.

What do you think it happened, instead ?

That's the reply to your answers. Users buy ( or not ). Sales drives development choices. Users are always right. Developers only follow.

Thank you for the extensive reply. Very much appreciated. I agree with your view with some remarks. Users buy what is available to buy. I mean, if you put for sale 2 new airliner operation airports for P3D and MSFS, which of the two you think would have more sales? I bet P3D because users can fly there their high quality aircraft. Uses like me who have bought all top quality scenery (including all from you) and I am very happy to fly there, are not excited to fly the default A320 of MSFS when there is FSL, PMDG, Leonardo, Majestic, Leonardo, TFDi out there. So, if FSDT or FlyTampa or Flightbeam or any scenery developer is focused in releasing MSFS sceneries waiting for aircraft developers to join, this to me means you lose opportunities for new P3D scenery that users are ready to buy on day one. There are so many international airports that could be made in P3D, options never finish. So, if as you say the conversion is cost effective and quite fast, I would expect and hope to see new announcements for P3D. Its just because so far I haven't seen any, and this includes aircraft (yes, the TFDi MD-11 is an exception plus hoping for the FSL Concorde). 

Edited by ComSimPilot

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25 minutes ago, Chock said:

....But for all that, it would be a fun aeroplane to try in a sim ...

You're not wrong, Al.. 🍻The sim already has an A320 so due to Airbus commonality, does that mean that some displays and avionics are ready and waiting to be used, I wonder.


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1 hour ago, ComSimPilot said:

I mean, if you put for sale 2 new airliner operation airports for P3D and MSFS, which of the two you think would have more sales?

And here's where you are wrong. It's not your fault, you don't have the data available to make an informed decision, the data which we have (sales).

We ALREADY put on sale 2 new airliner operation airports for P3D and MSFS, KORD and LSFB (which will be out very shortly), it's just the P3D versions came out first.

While KORD and LFSB came out before MSFS, we still consider them to be "cross platform" products because they both came out when MSFS was announced. And Basel came out when we already had the MSFS SDK in hand so, you might see them as "P3D-converted products" but, for us, they are just cross-platform products that happened to have been released for P3D first, simply because we couldn't release anything for MSFS before August 18th, and we couldn't even TELL ( or show ) anything, because of the NDA.

 

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I bet P3D because users can fly there their high quality aircraft.

I'm afraid you are going to lose the bet.

KORD has been out since 10 days, and sales on MSFS already massively surpassed the first 10 days of sales in P3D, with a trend that will likely result in the MSFS version outselling what the P3D version sold in one year, by the end September.

Very briefly:

- It will take only 20 days of sales in MSFS to reach 12 months of sales in P3D.

- The Xbox version is not even out yet.

- We have to "compete" with an handcrafted version included in the Premium versions of the sim.

- We don't have all the great features we have in the P3D version ( Docking systems, GSX, Active panels ), so the MSFS version is technically less featured.

- As you suggest, those sales can only get better when MSFS will have better quality airliners eventually-

- Most of the sales came from the MS Marketplace, where's there's no upgrade price, so we can assume most users were new, while existing users bought the discounted upgrade from our site or Simmarket.

You do the math...

Edited by virtuali
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26 minutes ago, ComSimPilot said:

So, if FSDT or FlyTampa or Flightbeam or any scenery developer is focused in releasing MSFS sceneries waiting for aircraft developers to join, this to me means you lose opportunities for new P3D scenery that users are ready to buy on day one.

You seem to ignore the most important part: TIME. We all know developing an high quality airport takes a year. An extremely (insanely) large airport like KORD took 2 YEARS, we started it somewhere in 2017, and it came out in August 2019.

Now assume we decided to start a new big airport for P3D now, let's say a KLAX or KJFK total remake, which I'm sure many would appreciate. It will still take two years to do it! Do you reasonably expect we won't have any high quality airliners for MSFS in 2022 ? It's not as if we can start selling it on P3D "now". We must first DO the airport...

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Users have been complaining about upgrading from 4.5 to v5 which is DX12 it broke some things that now need updating to V5, then you have simmers who want MSFS to use DX12 and DLSS and this will all be done by magic without braking addons in the sim well good luck with that.

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1 hour ago, Chock said:

Having said that, what we don't have is an A350, or an A380,

The A380 manual ( and the A350 is very similar ), is about 7000 pages long.

I AM reading it now, because you never know what it might be used for ( sometimes we dabble the idea to do an airplane ), so we can talk again in a couple of years, when I'll finish it, so I might have a better idea how to code it...perhaps the new Webassembly system and the SDK will be better by then.

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