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PC Pilot Magazine

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Does anyone else read this UK-published mag? I've been a reader now for about 2 years.If you look through the March/April 2007 issue, you'll see they review 10 products, and EIGHT (yes, 8!) were given a "PC Pilot Classic Product" award! Among the recipients were the Just Flight Airbus F-Lite (aka the CLS A340-500/600) and Just Flight's Flying Club X.Hmmmm.... how can they give such a high score to an Airbus sim that doesn't feature and FMGC, no FBW, and no systems modelling? What about a set of GA aircraft with panels that feature default gauges? In fact, if you look through the back issues, you'll see any product published by Just Flight gets a very favourable review.... and as if by some coincidence the mag is loaded with ads for Just Flight products!Now I didn't come down in the last shower, and I know that any such publication will be leaned upon to give favourable reviews to publishers who advertise heavily with them... but now it's just blatant! I'm sorry but I'm not going to pay to read marketing material for Just Flight products any more!I see that Simmarket has PDF versions of Computer Pilot. Is that any better?

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I've had a couple subscriptions over the years, when it came free with addons.Yes, it heavily supports products by all the major manufacturers and suffers from reviewers disease.But the main reason is that I'm not part of the target audience - and you probably are not also.To me the magazine appears to be focused at the flightsimmer wanting to step up from the default sim to payware addons.There is usually one very good article a month about such basics as navigation, aircraft handling, procedures. But mostly it's reviews of products.how can they give such a high score to an Airbus sim that doesn't feature and FMGC, no FBW, and no systems modelling? Because those are not priority items for most FS addon purchasers.FMS/FMC are a holy grail to the bolt counters, but not a priority to tens of thousands of simmers. Quite a few people will not buy a complex level aircraft such as LevelD or PMDG to avoid being locked into an FMS/FMC system.FBW - the comments on these forums show a majority of simmers don't understand it and don't want it. Because it's 'different' than expected aircraft behavior. We see a new thread posted every two days about the FBW behavior on approach and people cannot understand why the aircraft crashes.Systems modeling - if it's not simple and directly related to flying, the vast majority of simmers don't want it. Anything more than a couple switches to turn is too much trouble.Advising a new flightsimmer to buy a LevelD or PMDG aircraft for their first addon is a disaster waiting to happen. You've seen the posts when their products hit the street. Even the Wilco Airbus. Hundreds of posts by people who feel the aircraft is too complex and takes the fun out of flying, making it work.The magazine is geared to a certain type of simmer, and not a product for you, or me.I remembered their article on AFCAD a while back - and almost choked.But I can also suffer for being pigheaded that my way to fly / use FS is 'the best way'. It isn't, it's just 'my best way'. Most simmers have the same opinion - and it's wonderful the game can accommodate all our desires.Flying Club is a great introduction to expanding beyond the default GA aircraft. Has a nice structure and focus.A very large part of the gaming world wants goals and targest and rewards they can reach. FS is just too free form for them. Flying Club gives some of that structure.No I don't own it, don't intend to buy it. But it has a place and a purpose in the whole scheme.The magazine does a lot of good and brings a lot of people deeper in to FS. I've seen people reading it in airports and on planes while traveling. Great for starting a converstation about FS.Almost always they are part of the tremendous majority of simmers who have never purchased or downloaded any addon.They don't have any passion about FS and it's a take it or leave it game. They probably will not purchase the next version as FS becomes shelfware.This magazine helps many people make the leap into addons. Some eventually end up here and with complex aircraft. Some don't go that far, but they do become regular FS fliers.

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I wouldn't consider myself a hardcore realism simmer. My favourite genre of aircraft (can I use that term with aircraft?) is airliners, classic and modern. What I look for is an accurate panel, with accurate instrumentation and enough systems modelling to allow me to fly from A to B using reasonably realistic procedures and checklists. I'm not overly bothered about having and FMC with alternate flightplan, or complex failure modelling. A decent flight model that at least attempts to get the feel and performance right, and a nice visual model with plenty of repaints available.However, I imagine you are probably right about PC Pilot not being aimed at my type of simming. It definitely does seem to have a slant more towards those who are new to the hobby. Then again, how many people would go out and buy a specialist publication unless they were serious about their particular hobby or interest? However, I do stand by my original assertation: It really diminishes the magazine's credibility when eight out of ten product reviews award a "PC Pilot Classic Product".

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I also read PC Pilot and was surprised that they gave a high rating on some of the above mentioned products. However i think the F light range were given merit for being just that, light. They are a good transition aircraft for the novice simmer who wishes to escape the dull deafault aircraft.I dont think that pc pilot has left the more complex simmer behind, Their tutorials on airliner flight training, giving a step by step guid to systems and flight using PMDG's 744 is an excellent read. Also the 'back to basics' section is informative to not so new simmers, who, like me have become focused on jets and auto pilot!!Dave

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Reggie I did not buy, PC pilot from its early additions [ I just did not know it was available and I was not in to flight simming then ] but when I started to buy it, I thought it was pretty good, but since it was recently taken over [ last year ] by a major aviation publisher, I haven't bought a copy since, as before the takeover I thought it was pretty good at highlighting intresting and quality freeware but now it is in my opinion totally dominated by payware, I have nothing against FS2004/FSX payware I have bought lots of it, I just do not need a magazine to tell me about it, since the large payware manufacturers will publicize their product it is the freeware gems and the one-man and his dog payware software that I would be interested and PC Pilot is just about useless for that now.Best and Warm RegardsAdrian wainer

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I find that every time I look at a new issue, the news is old I've already seen it weeks prior by frequenting Avsim and the other FS websites.

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