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JgonRedcorn

The downfall of the simulation community

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Right, but my playing 1946 does nothing to grow or enhance the current flight sim community - or fund ongoing development.

 

By the way I just checked to make sure I wasn't talking BS. On the DCS files list there are 4 campaigns listed for the Huey - two are confirmed broken, one is Russian, and one came out recently, a four mission mini-campaign which I downloaded but haven't yet tried. For the Mig-15 there are zero. For the Mirage there are 3 - one is a redo of the Mig-21 stock campaign, one is 'under construction', and one is a fantasy setting of N. Kolcha vs S. Kolcha. Those are the three modules I often play when I can, and they have all been out for some years already.

 

I do wish I had more time and the inclination to flight sim online, because that is definitely were the current strengths lie.

 

Cheers

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Posted (edited)

5 Years ago everything seemed pale, now things are promising but I can't really say that everything is going great.

Nowadays I feel like everybody is playing just for the sake of it and all go with "trends". No one is interested in "wasting time". Nobody want's to learn how to do something even if the reward is better afterwards. I am in no position to decide how people must enjoy but I think we want things now and fast.

 

The PC market is full of games and as well as incredible pieces of art are being released, other games a just succesfull just for being trends, good quality aside. I'm at my early 20s and began 10 years ago on this journey. I didn't find somebody to teach me back then, you were on your own, thank god for the Internet.

 

At the present time, I think there are many more young people interested thanks for some titles like War Thunder and they are potential customers but there is a price barrier and of course, other kind of enjoyment. As an example: my friends play a match of 1h of a game I also sometimes play. They win or lose but they end up having a great experience. Now, if you put them on a Spitfire, what they consider to win? Shooting 5 planes? Of course they won't do that and they will feel frustrated and say "This is not something for me"

Small steps and patience is something I think we miss and people having patience on a hobby? is this heresy? We live in a world where fun must be gathered fast! and it must be some great feat

I remember back then when on Hyperlobby, coming back after not shooting even once was a reward, or even not breaking your engine. But we want everything now and schnell!

 

On one hand, simulations feel like learning history. You are part of something that happened or might happen, you get a role. I know people who find this boring as they know how things ended or just, they want to write their own stories

 

On the other hand, I think we are really better now and industry is likely to keep growing thanks to things like VR, how much? Good question.

 

 

Edited by LF_Gallahad
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Posted (edited)

Very interesting conversation ...

In my case, I have two boys, 11 and 10 years old. I have been teaching the youngest with the ROF tutorial and he loved it, unfortunately no tutorial in the IL2GBS ....

I have said this many times before. We need more tutorials if we want get new young players.

Well, that´s my two cents :)

 

They are playing now Clash Royal and I see why they like it ...

 

The good news is that is never too late, and now we have the U2 (Po2). What about a tutorial campaign like in ROF with this biplane? I'd buy for my kids.

Edited by 15[Span.]/JG51Spartan
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4 hours ago, SeaSerpent said:

 

 

Well, whatever label you wish to use, the closer something comes to a simulation of a real airplane, the less accessible it is going to be to the masses.  [...]   What you appear to be desiring is something that skips the compexity of a real aircraft to a point that it will entice casual gamers.

 

Yeah, because it was a complex simulation.  Were you not interested in a simulation of the F-16?  I'll be the first to admit that I never got very far with Falcon 4.0, because at that time, I didn't have the time, the interest, or the hardware (and the printers worked a lot slower then!).  Obviously others did, because there are still people using its descendents to this day.

 

Interestingly enough, if you dive into the world of something like DCS, you might find that there are an awful lot of very hard-core flight simmers, and if this is what's left after the 'downfall' of desktop flight simulation, I'll take that any day of the year (Anytime, Baby! 😀) compared to what some are calling 'the golden age'.

 

Agree on the first sentence - and just like any of us here paying money for BoX of course I enjoy the high fidelity of the aircraft modeling in this sim. My point was not that I wish for a less complex game but to make the complex game acessible to such a degree that someone who has no knowledge of WWII air combat still can enjoy the game.

 

Many options are already included, which are great! (simplified flight physics, markers including lead markers and aiming helps, navigational aids, automatic engine management, unlimited ammo/fuel...) It even has mouse control - which is a good thing. Unfortunatly that feature doesn't work very well and is no fun (I tried, when I visted relatives and didn't have a joystick with me...) If it worked as well as in war thunder - it would be great!

 

And the next thing is decent ingame tutorials... starting from well explained and easy to follow "this is how you take off/land" over "this is how you employ your weapons" to "this way you manage your energy, this way you might shake a bandit of your six and if you are in a 109, don't try to turn with a yak" - these tutorials would have to be doable in mouse control mode (simplified) AND much more detailed for proper controls (in the beginning I had a very hard time learning how to use the rudder effectively - and now that I know, I still suck at actually doing it in the heat of combat)...

 

The thing is: Such detailed tutorials would be a lot of work that the existing player base wouldn't care about because obviously we don't need them - but to a newbie being thrown in the cold water and being expected to learn all by yourself is intimidating...

 

RoF actually did it quite well - and when I try to convince anyone to try this hobby of mine I always recommend RoF. You get 3 planes for free, you can play career, have a quite well made training campaign, the aircraft aren't as complex as WWII birds, and the slow airspeed means it's easier to hit your target... It also still is a beautiful game, flying feels great in it.

 

And I was and still am teased by falcon 4.0 - but in the end like you I lack the time to study that sim intesively enough to play it. And I'm more into gunfights than missles...

 

And like many of you correctly pointed out: I grew up with stories about WWII - my grandfather served in that war.

 

There are hardcore simmers left - you are right - but there are not that many. Thats why I called the late nineties the "golden age" - the games were not necessarily better - but they attracted a lot of players... I don't know how it is in other contries but in Germany flight simulations are completely gone from the gaming magazines. In 2001 the original IL2 was a cover story. BoS only got minor reviews - and after that I haven't read or seen a flight sim review the gaming press. The only thing that came close since was the arcade flight action game Ace combat 7...

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By the way, I have another personal, crack-pot theory which may or may not have some bearing on this. I hesitate to share it, but what the hell ..

 

I think as the games get more and more realistic, they engage our imaginations less and less, and we become less invested emotionally in the experience. It's like being able to remember scenes from a good movie, but relive parts of a good book.

 

I can still vividly remember flying in the Solomons , hunting for a Japanese submarine at night, some 10-15 years ago. The islands and the ocean of my memory still look beautiful in the moonlight. Much more recently I enjoyed flying my Mirage over Georgia with my French instructor, marveling at the lovely looking contrails. But already I know the experiences aren't comparable and I can guarantee that I won't remember those contrails ten years from now.

 

/crack-pot theory

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I am 67 and have played just about every combat flight sim there ever was.  There once was a rule that you only simulate the fun stuff.  Larry Holland's games, WW2 and Star Wars alike, were primarily fun shooters with minimal complexity, other than diverting power to keep your shields maxed.  The Thirdwire games were similar - sims lite but a lot of fun.  Influenced, I think, by the Falcon series, the simulation of the fun stuff became more and more authentic and hit optimal level with complex engine management and carrier ops in IL2.   Now the trend is to simulate the not-fun stuff to please the hard-core.  We even see not-fun stuff, like ground handling, being made harder than it really is, according to many pilot posters on this site.

 

The most fun I ever had in flight sim from a *game* standpoint was Red Baron II.  The career mode was a blast.  The career in Mig Alley Ace was nearly as good,   The Initial IL2 added multiplayer which was an enormous amount of fun,  the excellent mission builder made for a lot of single-player fun, but the attempts at a career mode were pitiful.  RoF was a great deal of fun in multi-player, except for the ground handling which I chalked up to some peculiarity of French radial-powered aircraft, and which really didn't matter when you were taking off from a baseball field instead of a runway.

 

I love the models in the present IL2 series and I love being able to actually feel the different flight characteristics of the various aircraft.  I have a lot of fun with that, but it is more like a reference work than a game.  It may be too hard for me to enjoy, although I would put in more effort if carrier ops were available.  I may play online again once RoF2 gets rolling if I can have my Breguet back.

 

As far as the future - well, there will always be a niche market for historical aircraft sims so long as there are PC games.  My grandchildren play games on phones and consoles, though, so enjoy them while you've got them.

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Vig said:

 There once was a rule that you only simulate the fun stuff.  

 

 

 

 

If anything that rule applies now, certainly not in the 90's.

 

1 hour ago, Vig said:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interesting conversation in this thread, I'll throw out my quick opinion.

 

I think what the issue is is that back in the 90's game publishers still hadn't figured out what sold the best, and of course that is the fps and fps  multiplayer, nothing comes close.

That's why you see such a variety of genres from top publishers from that era that are dead now, cfs, space sims, point and clicks, etc. They were fantastic games, but companies only care about money. The yellow brick road is the road always followed. And the funny thing is 20 years later we are still in the fps era, and it doesn't look like anything will change soon. 

Something else to note is except maybe with the exception of il2, there weren't many cfs that were top sellers, they did well,  but not overly.

Edited by Tycoon

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The problem isn’t lack of gameplay.  The idea that gameplay is missing is complete nonsense.  The problem is lack of time.  I’d love to fly the DCS F-14.  I’d love to master the UH-1.  But I spend so much time playing BoX that I don’t have time for that stuff.

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In a certain way it shrinked. I feel like community has changed as interests did. But you also have people less involved in getting and flying together, the squadrons also seem less organized.

 

If there is something I can bring up that is indicative of late 90s Flight Sim community, it is the Warbirds Conventions organized by Interactive studios (or whatever were they called back then) in U.S. where you had not dozens but hundreds of people travelling from across the world (Australia, France, Canada, you name it) to meet up for a few days and fly together. People were taking computers with them, driving / flying across the country / world just to be there, be a part of the community. And you had everything a wannabe ace would ask for including a meeting with aces like Gabreski or Shaw. This later evolved into Aces High conventions but I dont think they ever reached out to what original Warbirds achieved in gathering and bringing people together. 

 

Graphics by today standards was piss poor, flight models as well. But the sense of being a part of a larger group, fly not with 2-3-5 buddies but 200 people right next to you and another 200+ connecting to arena was really something no game today can match. Especially none of the sims. 

It's certainly a part of whole experience which I wish still existed.

 

 

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1 hour ago, =362nd_FS=Hiromachi said:

In a certain way it shrinked. I feel like community has changed as interests did. But you also have people less involved in getting and flying together, the squadrons also seem less organized.

 

If there is something I can bring up that is indicative of late 90s Flight Sim community, it is the Warbirds Conventions organized by Interactive studios (or whatever were they called back then) in U.S. where you had not dozens but hundreds of people travelling from across the world (Australia, France, Canada, you name it) to meet up for a few days and fly together. People were taking computers with them, driving / flying across the country / world just to be there, be a part of the community. And you had everything a wannabe ace would ask for including a meeting with aces like Gabreski or Shaw. This later evolved into Aces High conventions but I dont think they ever reached out to what original Warbirds achieved in gathering and bringing people together. 

 

Graphics by today standards was piss poor, flight models as well. But the sense of being a part of a larger group, fly not with 2-3-5 buddies but 200 people right next to you and another 200+ connecting to arena was really something no game today can match. Especially none of the sims. 

It's certainly a part of whole experience which I wish still existed.

 

 

Posting from my phone so short and sweet. That's absolutely incredible! What the heck was that thing on the crt mid way through the video? Like a multiplier? Bodenplatte is gunna be a smash hit imo. Love all the comments guys threads been really civil with some great insight. Fantastic stuff. 

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4 hours ago, Tycoon said:

If anything that rule applies now, certainly not in the 90's.

 

 

Interesting conversation in this thread, I'll throw out my quick opinion.

 

I think what the issue is is that back in the 90's game publishers still hadn't figured out what sold the best, and of course that is the fps and fps  multiplayer, nothing comes close.

That's why you see such a variety of genres from top publishers from that era that are dead now, cfs, space sims, point and clicks, etc. They were fantastic games, but companies only care about money. The yellow brick road is the road always followed. And the funny thing is 20 years later we are still in the fps era, and it doesn't look like anything will change soon. 

Something else to note is except maybe with the exception of il2, there weren't many cfs that were top sellers, they did well,  but not overly.

 

I think Vig's comments related to CFSs in particular: I agree with him, the early CFS really were very simple, it was your imagination that did all the work. (I started with Microprose Project Stealth Fighter).

 

On gaming more broadly, something has changed, and for the better, which means that many good new games are released, and that is Steam and good internet connections. Whatever you think of their revenue share, having an easy to use, global distribution system has made it possible for indie studios of just a few people to get a huge variety of games out to a wide audience. Of course many are crap, and some are abandoned unfinished, but there is a world of good gaming outside the fps/MP bubble.

 

For instance, I have in my Steam library the originals and sequels for  Endless Legend (strategy), Legend of Grimrock (turn based tactics), Mount and Blade (RPG), Pike & Shot (miniatures wargame), and Rimworld (sad/funny story generator). None produced by large studios, none fps/MP, all excellent games. No doubt other people who enjoy games outside the CFS genre have their own examples. 

 

Where I think the difference may be is that all of these games start with a very clear idea of what game they want to be, and then build mechanisms around that. I am not sure that CFS after RB2 have really done that (except maybe WT? Not sure since I have not played it). Instead they start with the concept of simulating elements of military flight, then add somewhat unfinished game modes.  

 

 

 

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I remember...  20 years of simulation history

 

However, the initial over-enthusiasm was slowed down by the technology and its abilities.

 

Seeing, what hardware has become, where it is going - including the development tools and environment..

 

i would not call it "downfall", but more like" "The rise of a Phoenix" . A bright future ahead.

 

PS:

I do also recognize another phenomena (over all flight sims and groups within, at least the many i know). Community has become more "stalking", "hiding" and less communicative (voice coms).

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According to research I read some time ago, even a Goldfish has a longer ability to concentrate than humans nowadays. World is so hectic and full of all sorts of sensory input, advertisement, entertainment that we are not interested to focus on something as there is always sonethong new. Flight sims are just one that suffers this as it needs much more focus than most of other entertainment. They also usually reward you much quicker, and people are used to have easy entertainment and quick rewards.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, =362nd_FS=Hiromachi said:

It's certainly a part of whole experience which I wish still existed.

Not sure if those conventions can serve as a legitimate comparison. In these years, I attended/organized various coding/gaming parties that grew larger and larger over the years (as did the systems people brought along). A memorable one was „The Party“ held in December in Fredericia, Denmark. After half of the first day, we blew the main power fuse of the district, blacking out Fredericia and the neighboring towns. They had to re-route power from different parts of the country. They even brought the fuse on stage to show it to the crowd. That thing was half a meter, clearly showing that it was „spent“.

 

Yes, there was (and still is) this community. But taking the effort of packing your PC was mostly a necessity due to the internet not being what it is. LAN parties existed because WAN was piss poor slow for most and you were required to physically meet people in order to have a good chat with them. Also Doom matches only worked well on system hooked up with the 10baseT coax cable. You absolutely had to get together with your friends.

 

Today, there is much less of a requirement to pack your PC and go somewhere. WAN is as fast as your LAN if you pay for it. It was a great opportunity for socially shy people to leave their parents house basement and meet real people. And there were many rather interesting acquaintances indeed. But it was consequence, not basic rationale for attendance.

 

I‘d say, the community hasn‘t changed that much. It‘s just back in their basements on Discord etc.

Edited by ZachariasX
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I think you missed the point Zach by dumbing down entire event into a LAN party, which was not the case. Back in the day Warbirds could run even on 56k dial-up bandwidth Modem (though broadband was preferable for obvious reasons) just fine despite a considerable number of people online (which is why people on Con flew with and against people not participating in the event in the same arena). Something no flight sim today can replicate. In this we went down from a flights of hundreds of people to dozens in old Il-2 and further to combat of a couple of guys in skirmishes which effectively is what you get in Il-2 GB. That is another thing that is missing. The huge number of participants made it possible to create such things as Historic S3 Events. Todays flying experience is of much lesser scale.

 

So yes, I think it can serve as a legitimate comparison. And frankly, I'm still participating in such event every year, though in much much smaller scale and in Europe. But if anything, taking the effort of packing PC is easier than it ever was due to availability of gaming notebooks and small form factor pc's which can still deliver a considerable compute power. But that is only a part of entire experience, which also consisted of endless hours of dicussions, mugs of beer being poured, meetings with actual aces and museum tours. 

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Never been to a flight sim convention, never even wanted to go to one, and I have been at this a long time.

That said, my love of flight sim games has never waned... for me the zenith was IL2 (the original) and maximum use of Hyperlobby. 

My connection with other like minded people was being in a Squadron (19 EAF) at that time and when we weren't taking part in the big online wars through hyperlobby, we were doing co-ops and training etc.

If we weren't doing that it was constant (nightly) chats etc as we were all very into IL2.

I honestly thought I would be going down that road again when CloD and then BoS came along, but developers wanted to reinvent the wheel for some reason, instead of sticking to a tried and tested format... such is the way of the world I guess.

 

I'm pretty sure I will never experience that kind of fulfillment and fun experience again.

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Posted (edited)

Was there better gameplay way back then?. I dunno guys but it certainly felt that way for me. I've been "simming" game playing since the mid 80,s with a C64.

 

Who remembers the Microprose sims,the keyboard overlays,the big boxes containing the massive manuals that I used to read from cover to cover. I'd pay way more for my sims if they came with the great manuals of old. The manuals themselves built the tension up inside me,who remembers sneaking under radar to take out a bunker in Tripoli in Stealth fighter. Popping up over a hill to take out a target in Gunship?

 

Maybe it's because we were younger back then,had more imaginative minds? I do believe that there's still Sims/games with oodles of gameplay but..for me Personnally I don't think il ever get those exciting times back from my mid teens to early 20,s I think they meant more to us back then..I had to save my paper round money and do odd jobs for neighbours to afford sims back in the 80,s I appreciated them more I think by having to save for them. Anyway great thread Jon..I've Personnally enjoyed reading all the comments guys.

Edited by Adger
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Posted (edited)

Speaking of the old Mikroprose Sims. F-117, Gunship 2000 and B-17 etc were for  me as real as it could get back then. And to be honest, I was immersed in the same level as with today's HiFi flightsims along with Homepit and VR. Really crazy! 

Edited by Blooddawn1942
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30 minutes ago, Blooddawn1942 said:

Speaking of the old Mikroprose Sims. F-117, Gunship 2000 and B-17 etc were for  me as real as it could get back then. And to be honest, I was immersed in the same level as with today's HiFi flightsims along with Homepit and VR. Really crazy! 

 

Yep I felt the same way back then Blooddawn. Thing is me and my brother (18 mths) younger both kind of flew together back then.

 

The keyboard overlay went over the C64,I flew using a competition pro joystick and he was my keyboard man 

It used to go a bit tits up when I asked him for a flare to be dropped and he pressed chaff instead..me being shot down soon afterwards and then the soon after belting of each other because he pressed the wrong key :biggrin:

 

I don't have VR,I have tried it but not on BOX..I do have Trackir and there's no way I could ever go back to flying without it. Yep I think it was possibly more nostalgia back then and flight sims have definitely come on leaps and bounds since.

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Those were the days, when we were younger @Adger  :)

When I was 9 years old, I had C-64 and was playing Ace of Aces with a Replica of an US Bomberjacket and a white silk skarf from my dad, pretending I was piloting a Mosquito while sweating to death. 🤣

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11 minutes ago, Blooddawn1942 said:

Those were the days, when we were younger @Adger  :)

When I was 9 years old, I had C-64 and was playing Ace of Aces with a Replica of an US Bomberjacket and a white silk skarf from my dad, pretending I was piloting a Mosquito while sweating to death. 🤣

 

When I was 9 years old we had Electronic Football.

And no it was not on a monitor or TV screen, it was a vibrating metal board that had little plastic men on it with a cotton football LOL.

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55 minutes ago, Blooddawn1942 said:

Speaking of the old Mikroprose Sims. F-117, Gunship 2000 and B-17 etc were for  me as real as it could get back then. And to be honest, I was immersed in the same level as with today's HiFi flightsims along with Homepit and VR. Really crazy! 

 

It was the same for me in the early 80s with the Flight Simulation cassette tape for my ZX81.

 

Okay, maybe not. 😅  But I know what you mean.

FlightSimulation.Front.jpg

FlightSimulation.screen.gif

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though still young im old enoguh to have noticed this:

 

 

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Moving right along...

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I'd argue another factor is the substandard controls flight simmers have available to them in the consumer market compared to say driving games.

Racing sims are doing way better then flight sims, and they have about the same cost.

Difference is, even the entry level wheel has some form of force feedback, while $300+ joystick and rudder pedal offers in the flight sim world don't. To get FFB you have to get a 20 year old joystick design from some black market somewhere whose internals are of worse quality/capability then modern sticks.

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On 4/7/2019 at 4:16 AM, dburne said:

Flight sims today have a much steeper learning curve, and the younger generation has a much smaller attention span. They are more into instant gratification.

 

 

I think this is one of the primary reasons flight sims and the like are less popular than before. Kids are so used to getting everything immediately without working for it that when they are presented with a challenge they just give up and lose interest.

 

I have to say, I find the same thing happening to me recently. As technology increases and everything become so much quicker and easier I find my attention span isn't what it used to be, and I find that I lose interest in things alot quicker than I used to.

I used to be able to spend hours playing a game but recently I find it hard to play anything for more than a few hours a week without getting tired.

 

My interest in gaming as a whole has diminished greatly since I first started playing games in the 90s.

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This is what saddens me the most about warthunder, it provided the perfect gateway into the community, from arcade to FRB and then onto IL-2 and DCS. It really could have boosted the community if nurtured right but sadly not 

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4 minutes ago, Guccigang_Zesphr said:

This is what saddens me the most about warthunder, it provided the perfect gateway into the community, from arcade to FRB and then onto IL-2 and DCS. It really could have boosted the community if nurtured right but sadly not 

One of the most populated BoX servers (KOTA) is operated by people converting from WT.

https://stormbirds.blog/2019/04/08/community-qa-with-the-knights-of-the-air/

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23 hours ago, Legioneod said:

I think this is one of the primary reasons flight sims and the like are less popular than before. Kids are so used to getting everything immediately without working for it that when they are presented with a challenge they just give up and lose interest...

 

I'm not totally sure I would lay the blame wholly in their direction. I have two kids who are more clever than I was at their age, and persevere at the things they love just as much as I ever did.

 

 Flight simming requires a huge investment - a powerful pc + controllers + track IR/VR. It's a bit much for kids or young adults unless their parents are supplying everything.  There are so many other cheaper/easier options to occupy one's interest these days. If I wasn't already emotionally and financially invested in flight sims to the point that I am, I doubt I would take up the mantle. Also there used to be a larger range of options; WWI to Stealth bombers, arcade to moderately complex to Falcon 4. They don't have quite the same luxuries now.

 

For me the biggest turnoff in current combat flight sims is the lack of options in the theatres of operation. It's one of the main reasons I am revisiting IL-2 1946.

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Posted (edited)

I wouldn‘t say modern kids are the problem, their environment has changed too much. The magic of aviation has disappeared. Flying has become as routine as using the tram. Additionally PCs are no longer new and exciting. Me and my classmates were more focused on technology and more eager to try out everything.

When I was a kid we often made a family trip to the nearest international airport. Back than parking there was cheap, they had historic aircraft on display in the main hall and a huge visitors terrace with kiosks, playgrounds and more aircraft on display. You could walk around and look directly into the airliner cockpits below. All this has disappeared since 9.11.

 

At our local airfield we had regular airshows, always with some kind of highlight. A Harrier once, or an AN-2 or Ju 52 for rides. Their are gone now too, security reasons and nowadays people just complain about everything, especially noise.

 

The public visibility of flight sims greatly decreased also. As a teenager I could walk into a Computer store and they had a great collection of sims, even more add ons for MS FS and a decent number of Joysticks on display. Everybody interested in PC Gaming knew about the offer. Today you have to actively search the internet for sims and peripherals.

 

I can’t imagine how hard it is for some teenager to get into the hobby today. When I started flight simming 2X years ago, a simple joystick was sufficient, or not needed at all. I still could play EF-2000, or F-22 Total Air War with just the keyboard. Sims like CFS2 came with a thick manuals that explained everything. The basics of flight, the background of the Pacific war, the men and machines involved. It even had a chapter listing books for further reading. The old sims were less complex, had simpler fm and less detailed systems modeling.

It still took me a long time until I could take off and land or hit anything. I took the time because I loved airplanes.

Edited by Cunctator
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I've found that my experience has been the reverse of most people posting here. I found the flight sims of old fun, and I loved playing the old space sims, such as Wing Commander and Privateer, but none of that came close to the thrill of RL flying, doing aerobatics in gliders pulling in excess of 5g, 

 

The games of old I would play for a few hours maybe 50 at most, and move on to something else. For me the Golden Age of flight sims really is right now. VR puts me right inside these beautifully modelled cockpits, that fly and perform quite convincingly ( Unless you try to abuse the FM in certain circumstances ) I'm getting far more enjoyment right now out of the likes of DCS, Xplane, and mostly BOX which is currently my preferred sim of choice for the WWII seat of the pants feeling of flight. For me VR combined with the great job the Dev's have done with the focus on FM simulation is the star of the show. Combat is a thrilling bonus.

Now I know people have been advocating for more game play options, since launch we have seen improvements with the new career mode, we have this some what mysterious Marshall mode not far off the horizon which may transform some of the online game play options. AI behaviour has at least imo improved with AI opponents seemingly more willing to fight in the vertical plane instead of always holding a turn on the edge of stall.

 

I happen to think that BoX is in a good place right now in terms of what it offers for the price paid, and from where I stand, it appears to have a bright future, I'm really looking forward to new theatres with the current or even improved levels of fidelity, such as the pacific, and I've even come round to the idea of Korea, which I was not initially sold on at first. Perhaps one day after many years have passed they may even rethink the decision not to re-make the Battle of Britain. I know that's off the table, at least for now, but would love to see that come to Great Battles one day, with its career mode for all of its plane set.

 

TLDR: BoX ? I like it ;)

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1 minute ago, =11=Herne said:

BoX ? I like it

I could not agree more.

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I can tell you in my country it's not declining but rather booming, but its the civilian simulation that is booming not combat sim and here's why

 

1.it's an easier sim. let's face it, with 30 minutes of youtube video tutorial you can learn how to start a 777,737 from Cold and Dark, load the FMC and fly LNAV VNAV and let the autopilot take you there, basically you are playing computer inside of a computer. No need to learn some basic BFM.

 

2.to be able to have a good experience playing combat sim you need to invest on a lot of hardware such as good HOTAS and at least track IR, most people will only spend their money to buy Logitech Extreme 3D joystick, anything above that is considered very expensive for them, and you would be surprised that most people play with a small notebook and with the fan running crazy

 

3. and lastly and this is where I'm very sad about it, its that its easier to get civilian sim because of piracy website, a lot of people from where I am has the mentality of" if I can get it for free why should I pay" they never think in their mind about supporting developer. heck they even pirated a locally made scenery pack. 

 

so with that kind of mentality, there's no way that they will move to combat sim

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8 hours ago, 69th_Ustio said:

 they never think in their mind about supporting developer

I would like to point out that certain developers don't help. I swore never to buy anymore DCS product, I broke down and bought the F14,  because of the way ED and their 'moderator' treat their customers. There are modules that I own that are still waiting for their promised features years after release. While newer and newer modules are released in various unfinished states.

Large parts of the small community are willing to accept that business model and their purchases allow ED to continue with that model. It wont grow its audience though. Those folk support the developers but they don't help the community as a whole. In fact anyone who complains is shot down pretty quickly. I've seen it here too but not as bad as over in the ED forums.

 

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Posted (edited)
Just now, Rolling_Thunder said:

I would like to point out that certain developers don't help. I swore never to buy anymore DCS product, I broke down and bought the F14,  because of the way ED and their 'moderator' treat their customers. There are modules that I own that are still waiting for their promised features years after release. While newer and newer modules are released in various unfinished states.

 

It sucks... sacrificing something (a vow here) to get what one needs...

Edited by Ehret

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Probably the one thing that the modern flight sims lack compared to the most popular flight sims of the old days is the Walter Mitty elements as they are sometimes referred to.  The technical complexity and e-sport elements have developed in leaps and bounds.  However the ambient audio, UI and AI elements etc that once helped the user to roleplay as a war-pilot have not been developed further in more than a decade.  Those sp-immersive elements that still survive in modern sims are most often present as placeholders and unfinished betas.  While modern sims surpass the classics in all other respects, it is in the role-playing elements that they are creatively barren still lagging very far behind.

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On 4/7/2019 at 2:01 PM, Trooper117 said:

I think that one reason that flight sims were more successful in the past is for people like me it was much more relevant.

As a young lad I grew up talking to adults who had fought in both world wars, and I was enthralled by their stories... most impressive were stories about the air war.

Also, there were always films being made about the wars (WWII in particular) that made me want to know more.

When computer games allowed me to take part in my favourite interests it was something that drew me straight in and I've been at it ever since.

 

Kids in more recent times only get a watered down version in their history lessons, but for people of my generation, we were fully immersed in it as it was a relatively recent event.

Add to the fact that veterans in those days were not the old decrepit people you see today that are steadily dying out... talking to adults when I was young invariably led to lots of war stories, so it was always in my mind as I grew up...

I would agree with Trooper here.  I grew up watching many war films, being told by relatives of their time in service, watching documentaries on TV (and remember that there were only three TV channels so a lot more concentrated audience) many discussing the war, then the groundbreaking "World at War" documentary series showed, and here were amazing stories, footage and narration that made an impact. 

Growing up technology didn't exist to relive these events but as I got older, my disposable income increased and I could buy the pc and gadgets I wanted and relive those stories. 

 

Now, so many channels to choose from, so much dilution of the viewership and multiple platforms to choose from (Xbox, ps4, Nintendo, handheld gaming, tablets, phones, pc, Mac, etc, etc) the interest is then just focused on those who love WW2 history and those who gre up with it or hearing about it. 

 

I started enjoying flight Sims when IL2 came out (2001) and the aircraft were for the time a challenge to fly so they didn't overheat. But they were actually simple. The fun came in flying against challenging Ai (offline) but when online, it was more about having fun. You flew, you flew and used tactics, you flew and made sure your engine didn't overheat, you flew as a team, you flew and everything worked as it should. 

 

Now you fly, you have to manage oil Temps, water temps, prop pitch, wep boost, etc, etc. It is now not just about fighting and flying, it is fight,  fly and manage engines. Now that doesn't mean it isn't fun, that can be part of the fun, but generally people don't have hours to learn engine systems and switches  they just want to finish work, sit down for 3-4 hours and fly around with their friends and enjoy combat and tactics. That just isn't possible in the higher end Sims as it means they will invariably get shot down over and over again and eventually new players just get fed up and leave, so there is no new blood coming into the player base. I am not saying flight Sims are not fun, but for people who come to them from Ace Combat 6 or War Thunder, the step from playing for fun and learning an aircrafts stall points, weaknesses, engine management, deflection shooting and so on and so on...... That is a tough sell. Maybe some open cockpit servers would help (no chance in BoX)  or complex engine management switched off (but everything else enabled) would be a great way to entice new players, but currently there is an elitist mindset that says if you want to enter the club this is what you have to wear, no easy setups for aircraft control, if you want to come in you learn our ways or you don't play. 

 

Cheers, MP

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Yes, there was a discussion prior to the release of the Tomcat about autostart. A number of folks voiced the opinion that it should not be available - to punish those who don't take multiplayer seriously enough (the inference being screw everyone else who doesn't play the game the way I do). This kind of attitude is too prevalent in the flight sim community for it's own good. It alienates so many people who do realize it's just a video game, and will be turned away by this kind of thing (me included) and take their money with them.

 

While I can see the joy to be had from learning something complex, I often wish there was a slightly more relaxed attitude from both many players and the developers. I think we would have more options available if everything didn't have to be so exactingly accurate (and too often argumentative). Would we have a Pacific filled with WWII aircraft in the making by now? I will never know what a real Mitsubishi A6M flew like, so any decently informed guesstimate is far, far better and more fun, for me, than nothing at all.  If it feels real and keeps me engaged, and is above all fun, I'm in. There is a bigger, happier middle ground between chase-view arcade fliers and hardcore full-real switch clickers which isn't being adequately exploited right now. Although BoX definitely is currently doing the best job of this out of anyone.

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On 4/6/2019 at 10:44 PM, BraveSirRobin said:

20 years ago European Air War was released.  The stuff we have today is a lot better than EAW.  The "golden age" of combat flight sims is right now.

 

I agree with the overall quality of the stuff we have today. However, EAW did one particular thing much much better than our favorite sim today. 250 aircraft battles with heavy bombers, escorts, and interceptors approaching realistic scale. That's the number one thing I miss from that game.

 

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Pudu said:

Yes, there was a discussion prior to the release of the Tomcat about autostart. A number of folks voiced the opinion that it should not be available - to punish those who don't take multiplayer seriously enough (the inference being screw everyone else who doesn't play the game the way I do). This kind of attitude is too prevalent in the flight sim community for it's own good. It alienates so many people who do realize it's just a video game, and will be turned away by this kind of thing (me included) and take their money with them. 

 

 

 

But that Okay.

 

If a person is looking for "just a video game", then they really shouldn't be buying or spending their time in a complex desktop flight simulation, right?  They should be spending their money on something else, because it's not for them.    Hard-core study-sims aren't looking to entice those people in the first place.  If someone wants to use that kind of software then they're going to have to spend time learning it. i.e. if not, and someone want a Tomcat video game, and doesn't want a comprehesive simulation, hopefully there is a Top Gun game for them somewhere.  I think Flight Simulation is doing just fine, better than ever, in fact.  I think the title of this thread is misleading:  Based on some of the views expressed here, I think it maybe should have been titled, 'The downfall of Airplane Games'.

 

You should look into the story of Microsoft Flight (the supposed successor to the discontinued MSFS franchise).  It tried to be a one size fits all deal, appealing to both the simulation-oriented and the console-oriented and it failed.  They misunderstood their target market.

Edited by SeaSerpent

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