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Jörg Neumann regarding World Update 6 and future DLC

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1 hour ago, eslader said:

The trouble is that at minimum, the optics get unseemly when new planes are being cranked out while the old ones languish unfixed. 

This is a fair criticism, yes.   There are two things I would say in partial response to that.

  1. Part of the problem is that new content is, essentially, a marketing exercise.   To halt all new development, and new releases, for the time it takes to fix all existing bugs would be a commercial mistake.  One may not like this, but it's the nature of business.  You gotta keep moving forward.
  2. Even if you get idealistic and say "no, we're going to enter a revamp period, nothing new's going out", you still have the fact that creating flight sim content takes a very long time.  Some of what folks are seeing as "new" is stuff that's been in the works since before the sim was released, it's not like the dev team said "Hey, everything's great, let's go make air races!"    Sometimes you need to take things to completion rather than dropping them half finished, because the time and cost of putting everything on ice then resuming work later would be more than just putting it out now.

I'm not saying that either of those fully excuse the less than ideal optics.   I will freely admit there have been a few PR blunders, and perhaps not every decision made has been the soundest.   But they're mitigating factors that at least partially explain the situation, offered in the continued spirit of @himmelhorse's compassion through education.  😄

 

1 hour ago, eslader said:

But by the same token, it seems rational to assume that the team which does the aircraft is the team that's doing the new aircraft, which at least to the unwashed masses suggests that priority is being placed on the new upcharge aircraft rather than fixing the old upcharge aircraft. 

It would depend on where in the process of new development vs bug hunting/fixing things are, and what the nature of those bugs are.   I know this is a moderately unsatisfying answer, but since this is starting to touch on development processes and timelines that I'm not at liberty to unilaterally make public, the best thing I can say here is that progress can be made by having different people work on different parts of each work queue.   It doesn't have to be a binary thing where the entire team is either "making new stuff" or "fixing old stuff", progress can be made on both at once by a well managed team, even if that progress isn't immediately visible to the customer.

That's about best I can say on that right now.   I know it's vague and a little "you just have to take my word for it", which as we have seen is apparently a bridge too far for a few of the less charitable commenters here. 😄    Thankfully there are plenty of members of the community who are better than that, and hopefully this will have given them a little more insight or reassurance.

Edited by kaosfere
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1 hour ago, eslader said:

The trouble is that at minimum, the optics get unseemly when new planes are being cranked out while the old ones languish unfixed. 

To me, they are only "unfinished" if one is/was expecting payware quality default aircraft, and if one was/is expecting that, my question is: Why?

Some background: For myself, I have always said that I expect from any new sim (at a minimum) at least the fidelity in its default aircraft, that we received from FSX, and everything else was kind of up to the third parties.

For me, MSFS met and exceeded that bar.

1 hour ago, eslader said:

But by the same token, it seems rational to assume that the team which does the aircraft is the team that's doing the new aircraft, which at least to the unwashed masses suggests that priority is being placed on the new upcharge aircraft rather than fixing the old upcharge aircraft. 

Based on all of the things we have already been provided, which show enormous goodwill on the part of somebody out there with astoundingly deep pockets, and considering all the services and partners that surely demand(ded) recompense for their contributions and work put in  (Meteoblue, Blackshark, Bing maps team, Azure services (who exactly is paying for all that bandwidth!) Gaya simulations (making tons of free bespoke scenery for the world updates) Working title, (not working for free, though) Navblue, and even Asobo itself.......

Well..... Keeping all of the above in mind, I'm one of those willing to give the sim more than a little break after only a year, also having a very clear memory of where we came from, and what was offered over what type of time period by essentially all of our legacy sims.

I think our cupboard is pretty much overflowing with (mostly free!) bounty, and we might want to keep that in mind.

Obviously, other people's mileage can quite aggressively vary, but for me, the old phrase "looking a gift horse in the mouth", is definitely something to think about.

1 hour ago, eslader said:

Sure, the 3rd party fix addresses that, but every time the sim gets updated, that's at risk of breaking, and we just have to hope the people doing it stay motivated to keep doing it.

Is that not pretty much the exact same situation with every sim? How much stuff never gets updated when our legacy sims get overhauled or switch to the next version? In fact, how many companies actually charge for a version of their product that works with the new update? How many companies have disappeared, or bailed altogether like PMDG and the switch from XP 10 to 11? Why don't we seem to remember these things?

Why are we abruptly so much more demanding? Is it because we are dealing with Microsoft, and have decided resources are effectively infinite? I just don't get it.

1 hour ago, eslader said:

it's something that Asobo really needs to address before irritating their most supportive customers (who paid double for the PD edition) by sending out new shinys and showing no signs of fixing the payware we already bought.

They are showing no signs of fixing the payware we already purchased, only if we willfully ignore/disbelieve etc all they are and have been telling us regarding their intentions, backed up by the concrete facts of working closely with the FlyByWire team for improvements (the updated aircraft is even offered in the marketplace!) not to mention their hiring of Working Title, their unrivalled communication with the community to the point where we now seriously feel we can "vote" the companies priorities.....

Where is the historical precedence for anything like that in our legacy sims? Where is the precedence for all of the free things we have, to date, been given that we previously paid through the nose for?

Somebody earlier said we seem to want it all, and want it now.

I know my little niece would absolutely get "talked to" if she acted like that.......

Edited by HiFlyer
Spelling grammar etc
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1 hour ago, eslader said:

The trouble is that at minimum, the optics get unseemly when new planes are being cranked out while the old ones languish unfixed. 

I think the biggest problem here is mostly just one of expectations and in general difficulty in expressing the effort required to build some of this stuff.

So, if you look at what you get in the premium edition, each one of those premium planes are maybe $8 planes, max. What I don't always quite understand is why folks would hold a third party $8 plane to a totally different standard than those. An $8 third party 787 would be rightfully assumed to be mostly a decent-ish visual model with skin deep avionics at best. Instead what we seem to have is folks wanting what I would put more into the $35-50-ish plane price range, with relatively complete systems, full RNP IFR capabilities, coupled VNAV, and manufacturer accurate fly-by-wire autopilot. These are things that I've never seen on any aircraft that are either default or at that sub $10 kind of price point, even with MSFS's expanded reach.

Even though it's my opinion that there's a pretty large and head-scratching expectations gap there, I will say with 100% honesty that totally, absolutely the team _still_ wants to do right by what folks expect despite that, and that's why there is legitimately a whole strike team dedicated just to this scope. The issue is, the majority of the gap is an avionics gap, and that requires foundational work, which we are doing presently on the NXi. The intent is to bring the foundational work of the NXi to other avionics stacks as we go, but the truth is in the meantime there isn't a ton that can realistically be done with these massive glass systems. This is work that you can't just grab 10 more people and have it go twice as fast. So folks are going to have to exercise some patience while we take those planes and/or avionics out of that sub-$10 features range.

I've said in a couple other places that we're 4K+ person-hours into the NXi alone, and that's just one of the many avionics systems. That's the kind of effort required to meet the hardcore sim community's expectations, and you can do your own back-of-the-envelope math to figure out for yourself that it's Not Cheap. Anyone who feels there isn't a commitment to the sim for simmers community only need look at that. It's a massive, massive commitment.

I know I'm critical of the community in which I reside, but it's most often with tongue security in cheek, as I'm as much a procedures guy as a lot of folks here are. But the reality is that the stuff like world updates, like Reno, like Maverick, people do really dig that stuff too. And it really, truly does help keep the lights on, so I feel that the core sim community should be perhaps a little more forgiving and embracing. Without that set of flight enthusiasts, there would be not nearly enough to go on to continuing doing what we at the MSFS team well and truly want to do, which is continue to make progress towards the best flight simulation platform that exists, period. Despite what folks think, it's a hugely positive symbiosis: flight enthusiasts fund the really grindy, expensive technical work to make the sim a better sim for simmers, and a better sim makes it possible to make cooler things for flight enthusiasts, ad infinitum.

-Matt

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14 minutes ago, MattNischan said:

I think the biggest problem here is mostly just one of expectations and in general difficulty in expressing the effort required to build some of this stuff.

So, if you look at what you get in the premium edition, each one of those premium planes are maybe $8 planes, max. What I don't always quite understand is why folks would hold a third party $8 plane to a totally different standard than those. An $8 third party 787 would be rightfully assumed to be mostly a decent-ish visual model with skin deep avionics at best. Instead what we seem to have is folks wanting what I would put more into the $35-50-ish plane price range, with relatively complete systems, full RNP IFR capabilities, coupled VNAV, and manufacturer accurate fly-by-wire autopilot. These are things that I've never seen on any aircraft that are either default or at that sub $10 kind of price point, even with MSFS's expanded reach.

Thanks Matt. I think for default planes, MSFS should be held to the standard of default planes in other consumer market sims - that is, how does MSFS default planes compare to FSX, X-Plane, and P3D default planes.  If MSFS default planes are meeting the quality of other default planes in other sims, then MSFS default planes have met its goals.

Having said that, I do understand that some people with the premium deluxe planes would like a way for the community to enhance those planes but unfortunately, those planes have specific files encrypted, making it difficult or impossible for the community to enhance those planes.  It would be nice if Asobo/Microsoft provided a way for those planes to be enhanced, if it's technically possible.

Edited by abrams_tank
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1 hour ago, kaosfere said:

This is a fair criticism, yes.   There are two things I would say in partial response to that.

  1. Part of the problem is that new content is, essentially, a marketing exercise.   To halt all new development, and new releases, for the time it takes to fix all existing bugs would be a commercial mistake.  One may not like this, but it's the nature of business.  You gotta keep moving forward.
  2. Even if you get idealistic and say "no, we're going to enter a revamp period, nothing new's going out", you still have the fact that creating flight sim content takes a very long time.  Some of what folks are seeing as "new" is stuff that's been in the works since before the sim was released, it's not like the dev team said "Hey, everything's great, let's go make air races!"    Sometimes you need to take things to completion rather than dropping them half finished, because the time and cost of putting everything on ice then resuming work later would be more than just putting it out now.

I'm not saying that either of those fully excuse the less than ideal optics.   I will freely admit there have been a few PR blunders, and perhaps not every decision made has been the soundest.   But they're mitigating factors that at least partially explain the situation, offered in the continued spirit of @himmelhorse's compassion through education.  😄

 

It would depend on where in the process of new development vs bug hunting/fixing things are, and what the nature of those bugs are.   I know this is a moderately unsatisfying answer, but since this is starting to touch on development processes and timelines that I'm not at liberty to unilaterally make public, the best thing I can say here is that progress can be made by having different people work on different parts of each work queue.   It doesn't have to be a binary thing where the entire team is either "making new stuff" or "fixing old stuff", progress can be made on both at once by a well managed team, even if that progress isn't immediately visible to the customer.

That's about best I can say on that right now.   I know it's vague and a little "you just have to take my word for it", which as we have seen is apparently a bridge too far for a few of the less charitable commenters here. 😄    Thankfully there are plenty of members of the community who are better than that, and hopefully this will have given them a little more insight or reassurance.

Thank You for the reasonable explanation.

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Plus the interview wasn't about bugs, it was about the upcoming content.
 

If you want to hear answers on bug fixing, wait for next week's Q&A.

Edited by Tuskin38
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7 minutes ago, Maxis said:

Thank You for the reasonable explanation.

Yes indeed, this is is much better 😉

A balancing act is always a perilous exercise and this is a balancing act, necessity to release DLCs vs completing features/curing bugs. Disconnecting the marketing narrative from what the customer (the proper word to use) sees on his or her sim, ends up not only here, in this thread at Avsim, but also in the official forum where the most voted question is about priorities of the team Old bugs vs New products. 

Most of us don't mind new products, why would we ,  if we see things moving on on the older bugs/incomplete features front. Do we ? I read a post of @ChaoticBeauty on the official forum Ii think which says that the big rehab of the weather which I had understood from previous Q&A was for the end of the 2021 is now for the end of 2022.  September will be interesting with two (?) new updates. 

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1 hour ago, MattNischan said:

Instead what we seem to have is folks wanting what I would put more into the $35-50-ish plane price range, with relatively complete systems, full RNP IFR capabilities, coupled VNAV, and manufacturer accurate fly-by-wire autopilot

Which actually begs the question of offering these capabilities as payware...

I agree that no other flightsim has offered this level of avionics capability, other than via 3rd party addons.

I am sure that some will disagree.. but I, for one, would happily pay for a truly full featured avionics package for the planes I like to fly.. assuming of course that the commitment exists to support this package as we move forward in time.

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2 hours ago, kaosfere said:

I will freely admit there have been a few PR blunders

That I think is the main problem. This new announcement of the Junkers is one of them. They need to remind their customers that they're working on fixing issues with the stuff we've already bought. Obviously, they should only do this if it's true. 😉 First rule of good PR is "don't lie," after all, but the second rule is "always keep your audience informed." I think there would be somewhat less uncharitable comments directed devs-ward if they'd be better about explaining exactly what steps they're taking to fix various problems.  Parenthetically, note I didn't say no comments, or a lot less, because I'm also aware that gamers are some of the harshest critics in the universe. Asobo could ship a Singer/Link full motion level D sim with every copy of MSFS sold and people would still gripe angrily. 😉

1 hour ago, HiFlyer said:

To me, they are only "unfinished" if one is/was expecting payware quality default aircraft, and if one was/is expecting that, my question is: Why?

First, they aren't default aircraft. We paid double to get those aircraft. They're payware. However, to me, good quality payware is PMDG, Leonardo, A2A, etc level. I certainly didn't expect that level with the Premium-Deluxe aircraft, but Carenado quality might have been nice. Looks good. Maybe the systems are uh... Wanting, but it flies well - maybe not 100% true to the real thing, but at least without serious control problems like the Longitude's high altitude rocking. That would have been OK. I was not unrealistic enough to expect 10 PMDG-level aircraft for less than the price of one actual PMDG aircraft. 

 

2 hours ago, HiFlyer said:

Obviously, other people's mileage can quite aggressively vary, but for me, the old phrase "looking a gift horse in the mouth", is definitely something to think about.

I hope I'm not giving the impression that I'm one of the furious disgruntled people who have decided MSFS sucks, is unfixable, they want a refund, or my particular favorite, FS4 was more realistic. 😉  I'm certainly not. I'm 90% satisfied that I got what I expected. My *only* real complaint as to how Asobo has done things is that they're releasing new content when the same category old content that we paid double for has not yet been fixed. And that's certainly not a big enough complaint to get me on the "I hate Asobo" bandwagon.

But I will point out that no one is looking a gift horse in the mouth. I paid $120 for my horse, and all I'm really asking is that Asobo fix the broken horseshoe before they worry about braiding its mane. Now that I've completely tortured that metaphor, I hope that cleared a few things up.

 

1 hour ago, MattNischan said:

So, if you look at what you get in the premium edition, each one of those premium planes are maybe $8 planes, max.

Granted. Really, all I'm asking is that the Longitude not rock back and forth at high altitudes when on autopilot. Like I've said, I certainly don't expect study level out of these aircraft. Just make 'em fly half decent and I'll be perfectly happy.

 

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2 minutes ago, eslader said:

That I think is the main problem. This new announcement of the Junkers is one of them.

Honestly, I don't see any problem with it, personally, and I think maybe it goes back to Matt's comments about expectations.  However, I can understand why folks would feel differently, so I'm just going to mark this as "respectfully disagree" and move on.   (See, mom, I can do it!)

 

4 minutes ago, eslader said:

Asobo could ship a Singer/Link full motion level D sim with every copy of MSFS sold and people would still gripe angrily. 😉

This, OTOH, I fully agree with.   Don't think I could have said it better, myself.   😂

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29 minutes ago, eslader said:

First, they aren't default aircraft. We paid double to get those aircraft.

See, I never expected more than a few extra default aircraft to play with, and also, I was just as interested in the extra airports, which at the going rate for constructs of that level of detail at the time, seemed like quite a bargain for me.

Edited by HiFlyer
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28 minutes ago, eslader said:

 

First, they aren't default aircraft.

 

I stopped reading this post after this. LOL yes they are whether people want to believe it or not.

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52 minutes ago, eslader said:

I hope I'm not giving the impression that I'm one of the furious disgruntled people who have decided MSFS sucks, is unfixable, they want a refund, or my particular favorite, FS4 was more realistic. 😉  I'm certainly not. I'm 90% satisfied that I got what I expected. My *only* real complaint as to how Asobo has done things is that they're releasing new content when the same category old content that we paid double for has not yet been fixed. And that's certainly not a big enough complaint to get me on the "I hate Asobo" bandwagon.

Noted! 

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Just do the math.  You get 10 extra planes with the additional $60 for Deluxe Premium.

If you bought a plane of the marketplace for $6 what level of fidelity would you expect?

I think they exceeded the level of some recent examples of pay ware that cost double that number on release day, and have released several fixes since then.

And that’s not saying that they aren’t still working to improve them for free.  Feedback on issues (like the Longitude AP) is welcomed, but implying that one didn’t get their money’s worth doesn’t really hold up in the grand scheme of things.

Edited by VFXSimmer
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24 minutes ago, VFXSimmer said:

Just do the math.  You get 10 extra planes with the additional $60 for Deluxe Premium.

If you bought a plane of the marketplace for $6 what level of fidelity would you expect?

 

Don't forget all the extra airports as well that were included in the extra packages..  that reduces each aircraft to about $3 and each airport to about $2  if that.

Graham

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