We are very excited for what looks to be a banner year in the simulation industry. It is our goal to provide the best possible products for all current and future platforms. With 2017 underway, the community is anticipating new and/or improved flight simulator platforms to be released from Dovetail, Lockheed Martin, AeroFly, and Laminar Research.
First we would like to reflect briefly on 2016. Worldwide Airports HD was our signature release in late November. We are very pleased with the acceptance of this product within the flight simulator community. In addition, we look forward to continually enhancing this product by adding new features. Presently, we are working on 10 additional 3D airport vehicles as well as KDCA – Reagan National as the next enhanced airport pack. We plan to add additional features to the product over the next several months. The vision for our company for 2017 can be summed up in two words: improve and expand.
In improvement, we have two areas of focus:
1. Improved customer care. We envision customer care more than just product support, but to also include product pricing.
a. Product Support: We will be improving and expanding this area during 2017, and will offer a full featured three-tier support system:
i. Tier 1 support is for basic needs and will be provided through our current support forum.
ii. Tier 2 support is for specific needs with a direct connect to our developers.
iii. Tier 3 support involves a dedicated one-on-one online session. Here, a customer care tech will utilize our online session software to assists our customers to setup, trouble-shoot, and advise on specific needs with a hands-on approach.
b. Product Pricing: During 2016 we have noticed a change in the worldwide market place. Our goal has never been one of greed, rather a reasonable pricing structure. In 2016 we implemented an automatic price cut of 30% on most of our products. We also implemented an aggressive customer referral program at our store. Customers that refer up to 3 new customers receive 30% off their next purchase as well as the new customer they refer. We will continue to look at new ways to provide top quality products at reasonable and affordable pricing.
2. Improved product support. With many of our customers having multiple REX products we recognize that it can become quite difficult to support and maintain. Our plan is to centralize the maintenance of these products through one hub. REX AXIS will be a central hub where customers can control and maintain their REX products. A user utilizing REX AXIS will be able to download the latest full versions as well as any updates to a product. In addition, customers will be able to have live real-time contact with the REX support staff and other REX customers via REX AXIS. In addition to REX Axis, all future products will include a logging system to alert the developers of potential issues. A user will be able to submit these logs and they will be immediately forwarded to our developers for review. This will allow our developers to provide more timely patches for improved products.
In regards to the area of expansion, we have two areas of focus:
1. Expand our product line. This represents several things: first, it means to continually expand our current products on the market. Secondly, it means to add new products to the market.
a. Support for current products: We pride ourselves on keeping support of past products. During 2016 we saw the release of public betas of Service Pack 4 for REX Essential and OverDrive, improvements of the mapping features of REX FS2004 OverDrive, and enhancements to REX4 Texture Direct and Soft Clouds. With the upcoming release of Sky Force 3D, we will be planning improvements to REX Essentials, REX Texture Direct and Soft Clouds to take advantage of all the features that Sky Force 3D provides.
b. Adding new products: Our company has been one that always looks to the future and how it can improve what it has done in the past. We have a unique and strong line of new products on the horizon for 2017.
i. Sky Force 3D – A new approach to the environmental representation of weather features within FSX and P3D.
ii. Worldwide Airport Enhancement Packs – New add-on texture packs for REX Worldwide Airports HD, designed specifically for the 30+ custom airports within FSX and P3D.
iii. SIMAIR – A massive multiplayer experience that brings the realism of management, an air carrier and pilot in one place.
iv. REX AXIS – A new product management tool, that centralizes all REX products and maintenance into one package.
2. Expand staff, platforms, partners, and areas of development. We have been looking for new areas to expand.
a. Additional Staff - Over the next several months we will be adding additional staff to handle key areas of development. This will include areas such as 3D modelling, texture artists, programmers, as well as support staff.
b. Additional Platforms – As mentioned before we anticipate three new flight simulator platforms to be released this year. We are evaluating each one for the potential of possible tools/utilities to offer enhancements of each product line.
c. Additional Partnerships – We recognize that there are some great companies out there that have the same vision as ours. In 2017, we are looking forward to expanding and improving our partnerships with these companies with a goal to offer the best possible products for our community.
d. Additional Areas of Development – We have two companies in one. While REX Simulations is our core business, REX Game Studios has been making strides in the arena of independent “indie” game development. We are excited about the reception we have received with Storm Quest Game. Though this project has been on hold for a while, over the past year there have been huge advancements in design and development. We are excited about the opportunities for the future.
This is the heartbeat of our company. We would like to thank all of our customers for their continued dedication and support. We look forward to an exciting 2017 and beyond with all of you.
Reed Stough and Tim Fuchs