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Todd2

Are clouds the best ever now? I'm impressed.

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36 minutes ago, sightseer said:

I don't know that its possible to have high res clouds that will run well that also don't have apparent pixelation.

I'm of the opinion that Ultra means Ultra, AKA "choose this at your own risk, because it will only run good on top-tier hardware". I don't mind when they dial down the mid and low range settings to squeeze out more performance, because people usually pick those settings because that's what they want - performance. But I've got room to spare on my system, so I could probably have "Double Ultra" clouds and not fall below my locked 30 FPS. And if it did slow me down, then I'd just dial cloud quality back a notch and not complain. 🤷‍♂️

BTW, I'm not saying that clouds are bad in MSFS, but I do think there is room for improvement.

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The revolutionary and in my opinion most outstanding feature of MSFS was (yes, past tense!) LIVE WEATHER: a simulation based on a forecast model. Granted, it was not matching exactly what we see outside of our windows (it did so on a larger scale, but it took some basic meteorolgical knowledge to notice). Instead you could see clouds forming leewards of the mountains of the carribean islands in an otherwise clear sky, just as in real life! It should probably have been named "Dynamic Weather" to avoid the situation we are facing now:

"The community" not only disliked the night lighting, "we" also disliked the weather for not being "accurate" to the METAR reports.
And "we" all know that a good flight simulator has to display a ceiling with exactly 6/8th coverage in exactly 2300ft AGL if some momentary report from 25 minutes ago says so - because it has always been that way in FSX and P3D. And "we" obviously expect a robotic wind also matching exactly the report, not taking any gusts or magnetic variation into account.
Consquential ASOBO and Meteoblue have made an attempt with SU7 to synthesize weather according to METAR reports around the reporting stations as in the old days (that's how Active Sky and REX generate their weather and yet they are kept out because MS considered their weather simulation different - is it still?) and integrate that into their dynamic, forecast based simulation. And they failed big time!
Remember the TRON-like night lighting after their first attempt of "fixing" the issues outlined by "the community"? It took more than a year to get to the state we have now. We are still within a year since SU7 and I hope they will get the weather right some day, but unfortunately they also sacrificied rendering and lighting for performance, so some things will be gone for ever. And I'm also not so sure what "right" means in this context.

I am under the impression that they are way over their head at the moment, as the best they seem to be able to do is some tweaking to get an incremental better, yet still inconsistent weather depiction displaying mostly cumulus clouds.
And they have been very unspecific not only in terms of a timeline, but also about their objective, which seems to be reduced to incremental "improvements" over an unspecified period of time ("several sim updates"). Thus many users will probably get the impression that the weather is indeed getting better although it may never be as lifelike again as it was until SU5 (that's when changes to the lighting and cloud rendering started).

Why can MS/ASOBO get away with it?

Because the truth is that the weather related threads on the MS forums don't get much attention, let alone votes, as most gamers seem to be satisfied with the mediocre weather depiction introduced with SU7 or are too complacent to take the effort to participate. Take a look at the screenshot threads over there, where since SU7 you can see the same boring cloud patterns in every single post, and nobody seems to care.

And then there are the subscription-driven Youtubers/Twitchers, who could make a difference by calling a spade a spade, but continue to "aaaah" and "ooooh", although they must realize the loss of fidelity in the sim. But who subscribes to a channel pointing out flaws in the product? I hope they sometimes give honest feedback to MS, at least when asked.

Unfortunately, I think we have seen the best of MSFS Live Weather, if there's not a much broader user base demanding to deliver what the engine is capable of.

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30 minutes ago, Tom_L said:

....they also sacrificied rendering and lighting for performance, so some things will be gone for ever.

If we were stuck with zero hardware changes going forward, and that includes for both Xbox & PC, then yes we might not see aspects that initially were better, and now have been degraded, return to their initial starting point quality-wise.  Plus, right now there is already headroom to exploit in high end PCs (though you might need to choke down rock-solid 30fps to get there).  And hardware capability  will likely continue its relentless march forward, and there will be new versions of Xbox as well during the alleged 10y service life of MSFS.  What would MS/A gain by artificially restraining accessing highest end hardware better than they do today?  Would they do this so Xbox users don't feel cheated?  I don't think so.  It is in their best interests to keep exploiting all that the hardware can handle.  I don't think there is a hidden or public agenda to make sure Xbox and PC deliver identical experiences and that is just a guess because I don't see how it benefits them.  And there are people that start on Xbox then want more and go in deep with PC hardware.  I just saw these comments yesterday:

"I bought the XBOX Series X and a new TV in anticipation of MSFS on XBOX, I think I used it for about 48 hours and ordered a new PC and everything to build a home cockpit....Just didn’t do it for me on console, felt like I was flying my drone."

"I wouldn’t have invested in a PC without first getting hooked on messing around on the Xbox first via Gamespass."

It will take some creativity to offer in user-controlled sliders higher maximum values, ones that less PCs and Xbox really can't manage and so fundamentally improve cloud depiction even beyond where it started.  My sense is the scale of the entire project is such that I think it's highlly plausible they will--over the coming couple of years.  There is DX12 and I have no idea what that will bring, but perhaps that is part if this.  Asobo has stated there is work being done on cloud morphology and that there is a lot more to come in the weather development that we would be awstruck or something along those lines--and that proclamation was well after initial release, which may or may not imply this was before they decided they had to make performance compromises.  Anyway, it's premature to state anything we're talking about here is 'gone forever'.  

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Noel

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Noel said:

 

My connection is a bit borked for some reason. Anyway on Tom L last point i dont see that. At my guess a whole new userbase dont have clouds as the main priority.

That does not equate to a lack of interest at all, imo. Also going by the chat function feedback.

btw just to add a whole generation are just getting used to all this. Despite the alternative video games out there, i am sure this thing is capturing their imagination, and quite fast. Some people have been using flight sim since its inception. No way are they going to catch up that fast (even after two year release) That is why the next year is going to be very interesting.

 

Edited by icewater5

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1 hour ago, icewater5 said:

At my guess a whole new userbase dont have clouds as the main priority.

That does not equate to a lack of interest at all, imo.

I'll bet my life Asobo is ultra-aware of all of the issues we're talking about.  They have their own set of priorities and are not standing by waiting to be told what to prioritize to by end users.  They have a bigger, longer view than I.  What we're all missing is full knowledge of their big picture.  I generally give them the benefit of the doubt and I do it largely because I see the scope of the project as largely hugely effective and innovative, with no evidence they are slowing down their advance toward their end game.  We were told early on this is a 10 yr project, they would not fail hardcore simmers, and to date there is nothing that tells me any of that has been suspended.  They decided to put a lot of effort into free content updates, and likely they did this because it will draw more new users than better nearfield cloud resolution, or more accurate depiction of weather effects.  They'll get there with those things there is no compelling reason why they won't.

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Noel

System:  9900K@4.9Ghz@1.19v all cores, MSI MPG Z390M GAMING EDGE AC, Noctua NH-D15S, Corsair Vengeance 32Gb LPX 3200mHz DDR4, Sabrent NVMe 2Tb x 2, RTX 3080 Ti FE, Corsair RM 850W PSU, Win10 Pro, Dell curved 3440x1440, TCA Boeing Edition Yoke & TQ, Cessna Trim Wheel, 30 frames vSync to 60Hz.

 

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6 hours ago, Keto Ketchup said:

BTW, I'm not saying that clouds are bad in MSFS, but I do think there is room for improvement.

I agree.  I haven't been really happy with clouds since before SU5 and I really hope they rethink their 'density' variable that they added and do what they need to do to at the very least get clouds and their shadows (and haze and its effects) to be the proper colors.  Things aren't bad in summertime but in lower light situations the clouds are too yellow.

  I get that its a simulation and it may take quite a bit of computing power to accurately shade a distant cloud but I think it should be done because it is a flight simulator.  People can choose lower settings if need be.

  Really Im caught between my hope that they will do a good job in the future and the knowledge that they already sabotaged a really good past.


|   Dave   |    I've been around for most of my life.

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6 hours ago, Tom_L said:

Take a look at the screenshot threads over there, where since SU7 you can see the same boring cloud patterns in every single post, and nobody seems to care.

Yeah, I was trying to think of ways that somehow we could get the release version back somehow but not sure that is possible (maybe by purchasing the disc set but even then I think the sim would "force" us to update 😞

Clouds are toast since like SU3. Hopefully some day Asobo will release an update that gives us the option to turn off METAR based weather and use the completely organic dynamic forecast based live weather they originally released. It looked much more convincing/realistic even if it may not have totally matched the real world weather conditions.

Remember tests back in school and the saying goes "go with your original answers never change them!"?

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We are all connected..... To each other, biologically...... To the Earth, chemically...... To the rest of the Universe atomically.
 
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, KERNEL32 said:

Remember tests back in school and the saying goes "go with your original answers never change them!"?

Anyone wondering that some sayings are a bit borked, that should do it. 😎

Edited by icewater5

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11 hours ago, Noel said:

They have their own set of priorities and are not standing by waiting to be told what to prioritize to by end users.

Funny, that was exactly what Jorg told us to do. Who is this product built for if not end users? Seems the priority is only luring new ones on-board. Who cares if they have a frustrating experience. They gave their money which is all that matters.

11 hours ago, Noel said:

They decided to put a lot of effort into free content updates, and likely they did this because it will draw more new users than better nearfield cloud resolution, or more accurate depiction of weather effects.  They'll get there with those things there is no compelling reason why they won't.

"Don't worry simmers, we are all ultra-aware that stuff you paid for regressed or have been removed but the user base is larger than all of you now so please be patient over the next 2-4 years and we'll get right back to you. We promise."

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Posted (edited)

2-4 years sounds way long to me. Many video streams the language seems to focus on plane systems/performance, atc, ground procedures, scenery and passengers too. All anecdotal, still is this because these connect more to the top sellings games, that newer users are familiar with.?

Edited by icewater5

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Ah yes, baseless speculation. When a little time passes, Asobo will make the ones who love to spout it look stupid.

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i5 11600K. 32 GB RAM. 1TB SATA SSD. 3TB HDD. RTX 3070 Ti.

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So does this latest flight sim allow modders to add their own clouds like the older versions did? For example, high altitude cirrus clouds could be added as simple 2D sprites and still look pretty amazing for those of us flying at lower altitudes.

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15 hours ago, Noel said:

They decided to put a lot of effort into free content updates, and likely they did this because it will draw more new users than better nearfield cloud resolution, or more accurate depiction of weather effects.  They'll get there with those things there is no compelling reason why they won't.

Just to add to this.. MS is putting a lot of effort in loosening up their purse strings to contract out this free content to 3rd parties, ranging from entertainment add-ons like the Pelican to high fidelity realistic add-ons like the iniBuilds A310. Asobo itself stays focused on the core sim, like they should. There's no either/or situation here. Live weather clouds depiction (where regressions have occurred especially since METAR inclusion) is an area of focus and let's see how they deliver in improving it in SU10 and beyond... we know the core sim is capable of varied/better clouds depiction since that is very possible now with manually configured (or presets) weather.
 

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Len
1980s: Sublogic FS II on C64 ---> 1990s: Flight Unlimited I/II, MSFS 95/98 ---> 2000s/2010s: FS/X, P3D, XP ---> 2020+: MSFS

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