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Navigraph 2020 Survey Results out

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MSFS has a bigger piece of the pie then I thought.  No wonder so many airport/scenery DEV have moved on from P3D.  

What's most, most intriguing to me is how many folks are flying MSFS yet there are nothing but complaints and poor reviews about it.  Don't get it.  No wonder some DEV can release unfinished stuff (CS, Aerosoft, etc.) and get away with it.

Edited by Dreamflight767
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Aaron Ortega

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3 minutes ago, Dreamflight767 said:

What's most, most intriguing to me is how many folks are flying MSFS yet there are nothing but complaints and poor reviews about it.  

If you look upon the Prepar3d forum it's full of complaints either, and most of them - aside those from a small buch of notorious nay-sayers - are justified, in both cases. I have both installed and been using and can confirm a lot of the claimed issues.

MSFS as well as Prepar3d5 are suffering from a race which both loose.

Kind regards, Michael

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Maybe there's rather only one looser. Unfortunately, the customer.


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3 hours ago, pmb said:

MSFS as well as Prepar3d5 are suffering from a race which both loose.

Neither sim ticks all of the boxes right now.

For me at least, another factor with this survey is when it was taken.  Wasn't that October-November?  I was flying MSFS more then.  I'm flying P3D a lot more now because 5.1 is so nice.  I might answer the survey differently now.  Back then P3Dv5 wasn't so good.

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Rhett

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11 hours ago, micstatic said:

It's always interesting to read this every year.  Next year could be an interesting survey.  But I suspect most of us here on the p3d board won't be going anywhere anytime soon with the lack of non scenery addons available for MSFS. 

For me as I mostly fly GA VFR, which is supposed to be the MS2020 strong point, it's not so much that as the lack of decent multi-monitor support and the poor performance compared to P3Dv5 due to DX11.  But I also do study level airliners, and of course there won't be anything equivalent until the SDK gets brought up to scratch.

Plus I find flying around a lot of default MSFS cities underwhelming - the floors on the tower are wobbly and with all the excess vegetation they almost look apocalyptic. The default bridges can also have problems - try flying around Manhattan Island and see what it's like once you get away from downtown.

Masses of potential but too many holes for me to drop P3D as my major platform.  And given that LM needs P3D for its value-added aviation business, by the time those holes are finished P3D will have been upgraded too.

It will be fascinating to see the competition between the two and how they will look by the end of this year.

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I was very excited for the release of MSFS and bought the Deluxe version. Unfortunately purely as a simulator platform it has proven less capable until now compared to P3D. I base this on multiple reports of aircraft developers who state that MSFS can't support currently their simulation needs to bring the same level of realism that they have access to in P3D. So, what has actually happened with the release of MSFS is a general degradation of simulation quality. Microsoft released a nice scenery and weather graphics simulator, the masses of people who never cared for high fidelity aircraft handling and systems jumped in, developers followed this wave and the result is continuous low fidelity scenery releases for MSFS, and zero aircraft development for MSFS until Asobo improves their simulator to reach P3D levels. At the same time we see nearly no new releases for P3D, planned P3D scenery releases has been cancelled or put on the lowest priority while the serious aircraft developers are sitting and waiting for Asobo instead of developing for P3D.  To me it is clear that the release of MSFS instead of elevating simulation has actually lead to lower quality simulation for the whole community. It's unfortunately sad what they've done. 

Edited by ComSimPilot
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Not the first one to make this point, but the first one in this thread: the survey as a whole has to be understand as covering the niche, "hardcore" sim market who are interested in and familiar with Navigraph. It's a fair assumption that the remainder (the much larger, non-hardcore part) of the sim market is overwhelmingly flying MSFS, and probably to some extent X-Plane. They're not going to be flying P3D much, with its incredibly high price of entry and dated graphics. It would be interesting to see a broader survey of the market as a whole, although we probably won't.

Read in that light, it really is somewhat astounding that this survey shows just how much of the hardcore market MSFS already holds. You'd get a very different picture browsing these forums.

James

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@honanhal can you really be a hardcore simmer and using msfs?  I get wanting to take planes out for a spin and look at the pretty scenery. But if you are a hardcore simmer you probably aren’t satisfied without hardcore airplanes 

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37 minutes ago, micstatic said:

@honanhal can you really be a hardcore simmer and using msfs?  I get wanting to take planes out for a spin and look at the pretty scenery. But if you are a hardcore simmer you probably aren’t satisfied without hardcore airplanes 

Well, if you accept the premise that this survey reflects the "hardcore," niche community (which I think it self-evidently does, based on Navigraph's market) then the answer to your question is apparently "yes." A plurality of "hardcore simmers" are already using MSFS more than any other sim, based on the data in this survey.

Somehow I don't think that's the point of your question, though. I have no real interest in rehashing this endless debate here. I'll just say two things. First, I am anxiously awaiting a PMDG-or-similar-level addon aircraft for MSFS, as I know many others are as well. Second, don't underestimate the current availability of quite detailed, at-or-close-to "study-level" aircraft for MSFS. The Working Title CJ4 in particular is very, very impressive, and the FBW A320 project is already close to study level (and will continue to improve over time). As for GA aircraft, you've already got a number of planes at a high level of fidelity, especially Rob Young's Bonanza.

Anyway, point remains that it doesn't really matter what you or I think of MSFS's "hardcore cred." The "hardcore" community has spoken with their hearts and wallets.

James

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14 minutes ago, honanhal said:

Well, if you accept the premise that this survey reflects the "hardcore," niche community (which I think it self-evidently does, based on Navigraph's market) then the answer to your question is apparently "yes." A plurality of "hardcore simmers" are already using MSFS more than any other sim, based on the data in this survey.

Somehow I don't think that's the point of your question, though. I have no real interest in rehashing this endless debate here. I'll just say two things. First, I am anxiously awaiting a PMDG-or-similar-level addon aircraft for MSFS, as I know many others are as well. Second, don't underestimate the current availability of quite detailed, at-or-close-to "study-level" aircraft for MSFS. The Working Title CJ4 in particular is very, very impressive, and the FBW A320 project is already close to study level (and will continue to improve over time). As for GA aircraft, you've already got a number of planes at a high level of fidelity, especially Rob Young's Bonanza.

Anyway, point remains that it doesn't really matter what you or I think of MSFS's "hardcore cred." The "hardcore" community has spoken with their hearts and wallets.

James

James.  I have both sims.  In fact have had msfs since the alpha.  The A320 FBW is impressive.  Especially considering it's an open source project.  But it's not close to what I have now in the FSLabs.  I do however agree with your premise that most navigraph users are hardcore simmers.  I don't fly too much GA so can't speak to that.  What I want more than anything is this "limbo state" of the hobby to end.  Others have mentioned it above.  I don't think that developers can adequately support 3 simulators.  Not to mention the addon airport scenery i've seen in MSFS is not that impressive.  In fact the majority looks VERY similar to what I have now.  I also agree with the poster above who said he has noticed a continued degradation in visual quality as the MSFS updates have rolled out.  


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15 minutes ago, micstatic said:

 What I want more than anything is this "limbo state" of the hobby to end.  Others have mentioned it above.  I don't think that developers can adequately support 3 simulators.

I 100% agree with you on that! Before MSFS even came out I predicted we'd be in this situation during the transition period.

The dynamics of how we ended up in this limbo are complex, and I don't want to oversimplify. That said, PMDG absolutely has the power to be the tipping point here. The moment they release something for MSFS, the overwhelming bulk of the self-appointed "hardcore" community will follow virtually overnight. Of the explanations for why they're taking so long to release, I tend to incline toward the "playing a game of chicken with Asobo to force them to drop a code-porting solution into their lap to save money" theory. But as time goes on I get more and more susceptible to the "deliberately slow-rolling it to get more return on their P3D sunk costs" one...

You've already got a situation where the scenery developers are 90% focused on MSFS, but complex aircraft development remains stubbornly on P3D. Something's got to give, but I really don't know when it will. Not a great scenario for simmers. (All that being said, I still can't go back to P3D after MSFS, however much I miss PMDG/FSL etc.)

James

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yes PMDG will be very influential in terms of people transitioning.  But also people always forget about the very compelling and strongly simulated aircraft such as the Majestic Q400 and the Maddog MD-80.  

The other big question I've had since the beginning is the economic case for microsoft to make money.  I mean they make a cut off everything sold in the marketplace, but nothing from addons purchased outside it.  The simulator itself is not a subscription service.  But the costs of the server as well as the cost of maintaining and updating the simulator are substantial.  So how does Microsoft hanging with it long term?  At least in the past when they pulled out we still had the bones of the sim intact.  Now on a server them pulling out is massive.  I know I'm not the first to say this point.  But I think we could all agree it is a legitimate concern.  They are a business after all.  

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The current love affair that airport addon developers have with the new Microsoft Flight Simulator (MFS) is certainly frustrating for a P3D user. Having to wait for the UK2000 HD back catalogue to be converted to MFS before the next airport for P3D sees the light of day is rather annoying :dry:

Edited by Christopher Low
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Christopher Low

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1 hour ago, micstatic said:

 I also agree with the poster above who said he has noticed a continued degradation in visual quality as the MSFS updates have rolled out.  

Add me too to this.

And honestly.......new techniques/"fresh code" may be important for more performance. But also this has it´s limits.

MSFS is/was extreme pretty looking especially with EVERY building shown AND rendered.

At the cost of some other "part" performance had to increase for mainstream users....and THAT "part" is probably the visual one (reducing LOD, reducing sharpness, reducing dynamic lights (as EVERY light in MSFS is a Dynamic one).

Now we got better performance and have less stunning looking sim. This may not be that noticeable from nearby/low level flying. But from bigger/higher distances it is awful "blurry" at ground level.

My big question is, will they really shift attention to "us tubeliners" or will they keep their attention to the mainstream casual pilots who like to take a snapshot from their house, work, beach, hotel, mountain....etc?

I am really not so sure how this will be round about summer when DX12 (AKA XBOX 😉 ) is there.

I think this is an open end for now.

BUT: P3D will deliver, that is for sure. They are already on track to enhance the "visuals" and we have already tubeliners (AKA complex Aircrafts).

And on top: In VR I´ve got better performance AND more stability compared to MSFS without VR at some spots.

SO my 2021 route is still P3D. I also decided to invest in addons at P3D only. I like my hobby and it is not worth holding back my invests for something that could probably never come.

Marcus

Edited by mpo910
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You guys need to take in consideration how the "life cycle" for developing works, building an airport or add-on takes time.. so you now see plenty of releases for MSFS because devs were preparing for the new platform. This doesn't mean they have abandoned P3D! they might be now building things for P3D, but for God sake this doesn't happen's instantly! it takes time, so yea.. it looks like a GAP of no scenery for P3D.. it doesn't mean they will not come.. it can mean they are under making... or on hold for a bit.

Charts form the last survey must also be read properly, pay attention to this one.. it is not a full vertical bar chart.. it is a vertical staggered bar chart, you need to pay attention to the legend of the chart:

LdKV9Nd.png

So the results doesn't mean 60% of the population is using MSFS 2020 all the time. The correct reading is:.. about 28% use MSFS 2020 most of the time, about 12% frequently, 10% sometimes and about 9% infrequently.

These charts are more useful:

CXHLNAg.png

I have said it many times, we have a split market.. only 32% changed their simulator for MS2020 from other platforms, what MSFS provided was new users.. but apparently the previous chart indicates they are not using it that much it seems they are casual simmer? a bit hard to know with the data we have.

This chart is also interesting:

60ULRVn.png

Exactly as my product sales figures show, 30-40% decrease on sales for P3D when MSFS news came out, however in the last 2 months sales have actually increased.. this could be to either new users to P3D or people switching back from MSFS / XP.

As a developer I don't find this survey really useful since the charts are not very straight forward, and unless you put your analytical mind to work it can be rather confusing..  

There are lots of developers that rushed to produce products for MSFS 2020 in the hope to receive extra income since lot of people stopped buying products for P3D (and they were very vocal about it) when MSFS 2020 news came out, now not surprisingly you see a lack of releases for P3D.. your wallet will determine where things go, simple as that.. however it is my personal opinion that the recent prices shown in the MS2020 Market place where you can get airports for $5 USD and new airplanes for $12 USD means sales must not be going very well for these types of add-on's under that platform, this could be due too many factors, consumer behaviour, availability of freeware, consumer needs, etc. 

Bottom line, I am sure there are plenty of developers producing products for P3D, but these are under "development", the market will balance itself out soon.. and my take is most developers will continue to provide solutions for all platforms in order to reach the entire audience market from all angles and needs.

Patience is key..

My 2 cents,

S.

Edited by simbol
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