Purchasing the sim from Steam

I have the game on game pass at the moment and I want to buy it from Steam. Do I have to uninstall it first and then download again from Steam? Or can I use the stuff that I already have with game pass and then cancel my game pass account and it becomes mine from Steam.

Just remember if you buy it from steam and you have some kind of problem in installation, you have zero chance of a refund!

It’s unfortunate and I’m sure this is in contravention of Consumer Protection Law.

Prefer Steam because almost everything I have is from Steam. If I purchase from from Microsoft do I have to download that one again? Another thing is, if I want the deluxe edition from Microsoft do I again delete everything or do I get the additional files. With regard to Steam I have never had problems with them.

I dont know anything about Microsoft Game Pass.

When you buy it on Steam a small 2Gb program is downloaded from Steam, but the actual Sim when run is downloaded from Microsoft. It could be that when it sees you have a copy installed it will just start to run.

However if you have to download it again and say it takes you 12 hours, this will register with Steam that you have played the game for 12 hours. Now imagine you have problems getting the sim to run and it takes 50 hours to get it to run, it will now register you have played the game for 62 hours in total!!

If you decide you want a refund cause the thing keeps messing Steam will refuse a refund on the basis you have played the game for 62 hours.

Steam are usually OK because most of the games are downloaded from their servers, however it’s because the game downloads from Microsoft that causes this problem.

Hope somone can advise you about Game Pass and whether you’ll need to redownload the Steam version, which I feel you might have to do.

Sorry I cannot be further help.

Good Luck!

I started with gamepass then got the premium deluxe edition from Microsoft store it took another 20 minutes and it was done downloading no problems.

Folks have gotten refunds from Steam nearly 30+ hours over the “max time played” normal limit. All they had to do was explain in the request why, which is normal for that case. Most were because of the problems they had downloading or delays in installing the 100GB packages.

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I’ve been very happy with getting MSFS through Steam, and it works nice for sharing my pix etc with my friends already there. :small_airplane: :smiley_cat:

BTW: Ignore the “Internet lawyers” who know nothing and just troll the threads.

I had it on gamepass and purchased on MS store just so I won’t have to download again. I don’t get why it matters if you have it on MS store or steam. I start the game from my pinned bar or desktop short cut anyway. Doesn’t matter if i have it on steam or MS store. I don’t even open the xbox app unless there is an update. And even that is easy.

Because if we already have other games and friends on Steam, it’s nicer for sharing to also have MSFS on Steam. :small_airplane: :smiley_cat:

Well it’s also not true, so…
Valve commented on this back when it was released. The 2 hour rule is not hard and fast, it does not apply to installation times.

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I guess I understand that. I’m not a big PC gamer so I don’t experience the friends part lol understandable

One drawback to Steam is, updates are sometimes pushed to Steam later. It can be an hour or a day behind. This happens with X-Plane and DCS as well

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False. Completely false. The only part of MSFS that gets pushed out over Steam is the EXE that you then run to start the sim. The sim downloads the actual game content itself from Microsoft’s own CDN.

I own the game on Steam, for both Path 1 and Patch 2 there was a small (~600 MB) download on Steam and then a larger update in the MSFS launcher. So it seems like in some cases they do have to update the Steam base files.

The only part of the simulator that you download from Steam is the client. All the packages required to make the sim function, including core files, aircraft, scenery, and airports are managed internally and come from Microsoft’s servers.

Based on previous updates to the simulator (patch one and two), users were required to download a client patch through the Windows or Steam stores. Once this was done, they were prompted to download the updated packages next time the sim launched.

To make things a little bit more confusing, it seems you can update third-party items at any time so long as the update is available through the package manager. I saw the free airport had an update the other day, so I manually downloaded it.

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Which is what I said. :small_airplane: :smiley_cat:

Well, this thread is kind of turning into the “why would, or wouldn’t I want to buy the game from steam vs Microsoft store”

As has been pointed out, Steam has a refund policy that is quite good – except that it generally makes refunding almost impossible if you have “played” the game for more than 2 hrs. The challenge is that the install process counts as that time, and on average it takes most folks more than 2 hrs. So you already have eaten up the 2hr time that you should have requested a refund.

So now, say 4 hrs later, the download is crashing, or stalled, or whatever… your refund ability is not so easy.

Buying from steam does not make it so that you don’t have to download the game, and have that come from MS servers. So the bullet-proof (and fast) game download and install process a Steam user is used to, you really don’t get.

But there are also downsides to buying from the MS store. The MS store version is packaged like a Windows game – meaning it is installed in a protected folder called WindowsApps. You don’t even have read access to this folder by default – and while you can give yourself read access you cannot give yourself write access.

This causes problems for some. For example, depending on your anti-virus you may have to define an exclusion so MS flight sim can work. But you can’t browse and find the exe to do it. But if you search hard enough, you will find instructions on how to get around this.

But if you ever need to modify a file, or install files (dll’s, cfg files, etc) alongside the sims executable (such as to install reshade, or other things) you just won’t be able to do that. The steam version is not quite so locked down.

If I were buying the game today, I would probably buy the steam version because I just don’t like the way windows games are locked down. Its funny that I say that, because I absolutely get that cheating is a huge problem and a detriment to PC gaming and a security scheme to make it impossible to modify game files would be a good thing.

But along with that comes that you can’t ever do mods for legit reasons.

That said, please don’t take this as me saying you can’t install 3rd party plugins into MSFS202 if bought through the MS store – because you can.

Another thing which is a downside to buying from the MS store, is that since the windows store became a thing in Windows 8, it has been buggy and problematic and still is today. It is not abnormal to have to go through a troubleshooting and repair process because all of the sudden the windows store quits working and nothing can be installed or updated via the store.

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I use steam for almost everything too, except flight simulators like Xplane and Aces High. FSX Steam Edition we obviously didn’t have a choice. I prefer to have the hard copies directly installed on my hard drive without 3rd party interference or ‘middle man.’ It may be silly but it’s just how I like it. For hardware intensive applications like MSFS I just don’t like having Steam Client running while flying. Even if its not, I still feel like its using resources and updating things in the background. Also, for updates, I prefer to get them directly from Microsoft, from the MS Store, since it’s an MS application. If Microsoft didn’t make FS I probably would have had it through steam, but I just feel the whole ecosystem works better together with MS Windows, Store, and FS. Files are also easier to get to I feel without steam. Again, probably just me being picky, but I’ve also never really had any problems or bugs with installation, load times, or running the sim at all. No CTD’s, etc.

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Others can probably explain the file folder structure in depth, but I know for myself that the Steam version does did install into my Steam Library with other Steam games (I have a dedicated SSD for that that) AND ALSO has files in the windows user/appdata folder (which is probably common to all installs. And in the appData\Roaming\Microsoft Flight Simulator\Packages\Official folder there is a Steam folder.

I’ll let others expand on that, but I would say if you are going to go the steam version you probably should remove the Pass version as you might get conflicting or unnecessary duplication of files. Then again I’m not sure how pass works exactly, that’s just stuff on your Xbox file system?