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abrams_tank

Future of MSFS? Commercial market or combat flight sim?

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Posted (edited)

So with the trailer of MSFS for X-Box, it's interesting that Asobo is releasing a Top Gun add-on for MSFS.  This signals that MSFS will support supersonic flight at that point.  Some people are saying that Microsoft may abandon MSFS like they did to FSX and that it may not be a 10 year project.  I have always disagreed with this thought process because Microsoft/Asobo can still support MSFS for up to 10 years, but may reduce the number of people (or reduce the man hours) working on MSFS as the years go by (ie. maybe by year 9 or year 10, Asobo may only have some 30 people working on MSFS, full time or part time).

However, I get the feeling that Microsoft has bigger plans for MSFS.  For starters, I think they probably have a good base simulator with MSFS to attempt an entry in the commercial market.  This article here cites some potential commercial applications for MSFS:

Quote

it in not hard to foresee that real-world aviators and aerospace industry could take advantage of this sim - whether is using it to brush up knowledge of VFR landmarks at a local flying club, licensing the Azure Cloud AI and graphics for another simulator, or using the amazing graphics to market airline livery designs or new aircraft concepts or renders of airports ... ... With a flight sim that allows global VFR flight, this may also could have some applications for example, for mission rehearsal for special forces and military aviators, who perhaps might want to familarise themselves with remote regions of the world or airstrips that are not included in their full-size simulator database. The possibilities could be endless.

I wonder what is the agreement that Microsoft made with Lockheed Martin when they signed the contract for FSX.  I can't see Microsoft signing any contract that would lock them out of the commercial market indefinitely.  So if there are no legal issues that would prevent Microsoft from entering the commercial market, MSFS would make an excellent base simulator to attempt an entry into the commercial market (probably not level D simulators, but commercial areas like the article above cited would be realistic).  Furthermore, I wonder if Lockheed Martin has approached Microsoft on getting the rights to use MSFS to make commercial applications.  If Lockheed Martin thinks they can use MSFS to make commercial applications for its customers, and at the same time, fend of Microsoft from entering the commercial space, I wouldn't be surprised if Lockheed Martin is considering doing this, or maybe they have approached Microsoft already.

With the upcoming release of the Top Gun add-on for MSFS, this brings back memories of Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator.  I think a few people mentioned that MSFS won't allow weapons at the moment.  But there is nothing wrong with Microsoft using the MSFS engine and satellite/photogrammetry usage and creating say, a modern combat flight simulator that is on a separate server than MSFS, that is a separate product to MSFS (similar to how Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator was a separate product to FSX).

And last but not least, the technology of creating the entire world in 3D via satellite & photogrammetry.  If this can be refined further so that the world generated by satellite & photogrammetry is more accurate, and the resolution is better, this has a huge number of applications.  There would be so many game companies that would be interested in such technology.  And aside from interest from game companies, I can imagine other software companies would be very interested in such a technology.  If Microsoft were smart (and I believe the Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is a very smart person), they will continue to refine this technology further.

If Microsoft sees further markets they can enter by using the MSFS base engine, I may be wrong that they will reduce the number of people working on MSFS over the next 10 years.  If Microsoft sees they can make a lot of $$$ further by enhancing the MSFS engine, they may even add more people working on MSFS over the years, rather than reducing the number of people working on it.

Edited by abrams_tank
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MSFS Combat sim would be great 🙂 

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Rich Sennett

               

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1 minute ago, Richard Sennett said:

MSFS Combat sim would be great 🙂 

Yeah, it would be awesome! So if Asobo made a modern combat flight simulator, they have over 80% of the work done already with the MSFS engine.  Asobo just needs to add some fighters/bombers, AI for the fighters/bombers, ordinance/weapons physics for the fighters/bombers, some military airports, and of course the mission windows and mission content.  Of course, I am simplifying things a little and Asobo needs to do more work than that.  But I honestly think that 80% of the work is done already with the current MSFS engine.  

Making a combat flight simulator using the MSFS engine is logical and IMO, cheap for Microsoft because the majority of the work is done.  They would be crazy to not make a combat flight simulator, given all the work they have put into MSFS so far.

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1 minute ago, Ricardo41 said:

I'd like a revived Microsoft Train Simulator!

Yup. If the satellite and photogrammetry can be refined further so that the objects at ground level can be at a higher resolution and more detailed, a Microsoft Train Simulator is a no brainer.


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9 minutes ago, Ricardo41 said:

I'd like a revived Microsoft Train Simulator!

What about putting everything together, truck simulator, train simulator, bus simulator, ship simulator etc. I mean, would be awesome to see everything working on the same platform. But yeah, right now it’s just a dream.

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, ca_metal said:

What about putting everything together, truck simulator, train simulator, bus simulator, ship simulator etc. I mean, would be awesome to see everything working on the same platform. But yeah, right now it’s just a dream.

The only problem I see with this is griefers.  For example, if somebody were playing the bus simulator, and they wanted to grief pilots, they could run the bus over the runway at a popular airport just to word not allowed off the people playing the flight simulator.  But if griefers could be controlled (ie. if enough players report a griefer and that griefer is made invisible to other players), I don't see why something that combined all the simulators can't be done.  It makes a lot of sense actually and adds even more realism to a "combined" simulator world. 

Edited by abrams_tank
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I'd like to see complete military aircraft in MSFS. If Spitfires had cannons, leave them on for the sake of realism.

F-18s and carriers aren't involved in powder puff routines. They are serious machines of war. If they are in MSFS they should be realistically portrayed as possible.

If combat capable aircraft are an anathema to some in MSFS then I would like to see a MS Combat Simulator.

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Jim Morgan

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1 minute ago, jcjimmy said:

I'd like to see complete military aircraft in MSFS. If Spitfires had cannons, leave them on for the sake of realism.

F-18s and carriers aren't involved in powder puff routines. They are serious machines of war. If they are in MSFS they should be realistically portrayed as possible.

If combat capable aircraft are an anathema to some in MSFS then I would like to see a MS Combat Simulator.

So if Microsoft does make a combat flight simulator out of the MSFS engine, I don't think they would allow the fighter jets to shoot down the passenger planes other people are flying because that would create chaos for the people that just want to fly passenger planes peacefully, hahahaha.


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I truly can't imagine Asobo making a combat sim out of this.

If one listens to the team during interviews and streams, they have a very clear idea and vision about their product, which mostly seems to revolve about the fascination and joy of flight as well as exploring the world.

I can't see Jörg Neumann taking this in a combat-oriented direction at all.

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5 minutes ago, Der Zeitgeist said:

I truly can't imagine Asobo making a combat sim out of this.

If one listens to the team during interviews and streams, they have a very clear idea and vision about their product, which mostly seems to revolve about the fascination and joy of flight as well as exploring the world.

I can't see Jörg Neumann taking this in a combat-oriented direction at all.

It can be a completely separate product, just as Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator was a completely separate product from FSX.

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38 minutes ago, ca_metal said:

What about putting everything together, truck simulator, train simulator, bus simulator, ship simulator etc. I mean, would be awesome to see everything working on the same platform. But yeah, right now it’s just a dream.

That would have to be called “Planet Earth Simulator”. It will require a nVidia RTX 9 million-and-ninety-nine Ti GPU and a terabyte of DDR 9000 RAM at a gazillion Mhz. 
So in other words, it is not just a dream, it’s right around the corner!😁


GregH

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Adding in a modern combat module using the MSFS engine would seem pretty tricky to me. There'd be a huge amount of work involved. All the AI unit logic (planes, ground units, how they move, what they can "see", etc.), ballistics, missile computations, plane damage calculation & subsequent effects, building destructability, radar & detection logic, etc., etc. The engine seems pretty pushed as it is and adding in all that extra stuff going on would be a massive challenge. I'd love to see it but I wouldn't be holding my breath it'll be coming in a proper sense any time soon.

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5 minutes ago, RaptyrOne said:

That would have to be called “Planet Earth Simulator”. It will require a nVidia RTX 9 million-and-ninety-nine Ti GPU and a terabyte of DDR 9000 RAM at a gazillion Mhz. 
So in other words, it is not just a dream, it’s right around the corner!😁

LOL

True. You are right. But if anyone had written here, before june 2019, that Microsoft would bring the MSFS franchise back with a next gen flight simulator, using all those techniques and features we see, I would say it was just a dream. 😆

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7 minutes ago, RaptyrOne said:

That would have to be called “Planet Earth Simulator”. It will require a nVidia RTX 9 million-and-ninety-nine Ti GPU and a terabyte of DDR 9000 RAM at a gazillion Mhz. 
So in other words, it is not just a dream, it’s right around the corner!😁

Think twenty years back, if someone had suggested a simulator like MSFS ...


- Harry 

i9-10920X (@5.0 GHz), 64GB RAM (@3600, CL16) RTX 3090, 3.5 TB SSD (3x NVME M.2). MSFS 2020: Freeware & Payware scenery add-ons, no larger airports so far. P3Dv5.2: FSGlobalNG (mesh), ORBX (Global+OLC, all FTX Regions, all TE products, many Airports), DDscenery (NYC, Chicago, SEA), Airports (FT, FB, FSDT, AS); PMDG (737, 747, 777), MJC DQ400, RA Piston Duke, A2A C172. Weather ASP5. RXP GTN 750, AI Traffic: AIG OCI.

 

 

 

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