What I find somewhat astonishing is the degree to which the last decade of what seems to me to be clear evidence of the difficulty - virtual impossibility - of producing realistic modern air combat simulations continues to be scoffed at. Fine, maybe you're not a particular fan of ED or some of the decisions made, but come on. How could anyone seriously accuse us of getting fat off of flight simmers' money? That is a joke and a rather offensive one. How many more sim projects, many far less ambitious than DCS, have to stall out before there is some kind of understanding that our hobby has long outgrown anyone's ability to feed it at a reasonable level of quality and within reasonable time frames? I mean, Microsoft, for Christ's sake probably the biggest and most comfortably set name in the business by a long shot, left it. Did that help us as simmers? MS Flight?
I don't want to say that "you" are the luckly ones, but I think most of the guys at ED could no doubt find jobs elsewhere and get paid considerably more for their rather specialized skills and talents. And as a company, I'm sure management could find other ways to use the talent in more profitable and far less demanding projects. We, however, as a simming community, would indeed lose what seems to me to be one of the few (I won't say "last" or "only", though I don't think it would be unfair to say so) realistic modern air combat sim projects around. This stuff is a struggle, financially and technically. You don't have to believe me. Just look around.
However, i think you will find that FSX was a commercial success to quite a large degree. Such a success, look at all the 3rd party businesses that were created, big and small, that run off of one peice of software. FSX is a huge success (commercially) As for microsoft dropping it, well that is ultimately their own decision.
Microsoft then had the brainstorm (and its a pretty darn good idea really - if implemented well) that if a product can do so well in a niche market, what will happen if they can include those not normally attributed to such a niche. Brilliant ! But the product by the sounds of it, isn't good enough to capture that vision.
Microsoft didn't abandon this industry they wanted to open it up. they see the potential in this market, so its there.
As for ED. Well, sure they must have a pssion in what they are doing but at the end of the day this is a business. I think its a pretty ridiculous assumption to think that DCS is just a byproduct of love to waste all their time in instead of feeding their familes.
ED know that they have a pretty darned indepth product on their hand and there is really no competition for that in the marketplace at the moment. They have found a market, and they are lucky enough to be in the position to find an opening to cover the fall of FSX era. Its not for love alone they are doing this. Its for money as well and they stand to make a large chunk of money if done right. They know (should) that.
So they have a business. That business has developed a market. And a massive global hole in that market will be opening in the next few years to which there is no currently known competitor. Just look at the FSX developers already showing migration interest.
I see it as folly, that there is such opportunity and you and others that share the same oppinion think we the flight sim hobbyist should be thankful for their work. Well yes and no. I am thankful that they have created the product, but there is a market there, a large market, and someone else would eventually fill their shoes. Sure a lot of businesses went bung trying to do the same as ED, but how manhy car manufacturers met the smae fate purely by bad products, bad business decisions and bad support?
I am not thankful, because there will always be an alternative product. Sure i may have to wait 3-5 year for it but that isn't long especially in the time frame that DCS releases items.
So ED should be thankful to us - the consumer. We are the ones that will line their pockets. We are the market they are reaching for. They are not doing purely for love otherwise the game would be free. They are doing it as a business and any good business has model based on great customer service.
I hope ED do well, i hope they consider us more instead of how they treated us in the past.
I have no problems with paying for work. I am more than happy to shell out money for it. What i will not do is shell out money to those i feel don't care about me, the consumer. Because, someday, somewhere, someone else will take my money if i won't give it to them.
Its been a great few years for flight items and the buzz behind them epitomises how much of a market is there. Take CLOD and ROF. Both were shoddy and horid on release but look how much they have been supported. The market is there, though piss us (the customer) off and rest assured, there is not enough die hard fans to keep a product in development if you don't have the hand of the general consumer.
Like i said before and i think a lot will agree with this. I like the product, i want more of the product. I am happy to pay for the product. But if you sh1te in my mouth i am not coming back for seconds.
As a personal statement, ED would have a lot more of my money in their pockets if they treated me like a customer. I wonder how many others out there are like me ?