I think because most of you here are new folks or just get into this hobby from Xbox, never went through that “funny” period where phones has many buttons and an actual physical phone book is a thing.
Computer graphics… well…
Most IFR-exclusive people are typically older or more senior users of MSFS. Let me share you what you get when you fly “VFR” back then without buying $100 plus “mesh & ortho textures”. Behold:
Ground texture that is just as sharp as your, wait, blurrier than the most awful military camouflage pattern. Even at surface level.
This is why older folks in this hobby mostly grow up to be “tubeliners”. So we can get as far high as possible from this awful world. At least up in the sky, the cloud textures looked nice.
Some of us get into this ‘properly’ - meaning we do in-sim flight school, fly Cessnas, Pipers, the Baron 58, and what nots. But then again, how long do you think famous GA developers like Carenado has been there for? Yes, some of you might have not been born yet… the year 2000.
Today though, VFR/GA scene is on massive resurgence, easily because of how MSFS is able to create one of the best looking “world” in any video game ever. Some even wanted to turn it into FPS or driving simulator or train simulator due to how awesome it still looks at 0 AGL.
I used to never consider paying for GA aircraft, but today though, they easily outnumber and outpace any tubeliner developers, and for obvious reason. There is plenty to look at in MSFS, the changing sceneries, the “sense of travel” - the level of immersion is just enough for me to get into Diamond DA-62 and then sit through 3 hours of scouring half of Java island. Every roof tops, every streets, alleyways, creeks, canals, highways, powerlines, smokestacks, small hills - are all there. You get “sense of place” - you know where you are in this game. You don’t get that in FSX, X-Plane, let alone FS9 or FS2002… even with 1.5 GB “mesh & satellite photo” overlays - an entire village could be just a smudge of reddish brown - the typical colour of Indonesian house roof tops.