Radical change of course for product development

Here’s a blunt challenge to the Asobo/Microsoft team. Suspend World Updates for a minimum of 6 months. Focus ONLY on getting the core product to a point where ATC functions all the time, the planes developed by Asobo (787 and 747 especially) are functional with reasonable and stable flight characteristics, ground traffic gives way to aircraft at airports (like in the real world you’re supposed to be modeling, remember?), AI aircraft behave normally for takeoff and landings (they don’t sit on the runway after touchdown and don’t take forever to exit the runway) and ATC can figure out how to space arriving traffic so every other plane on approach doesn’t have to do a go around.

I bought the premium package with certain expectations of what I’d get for my money. If all I wanted were stunning views of scenery, there’s plenty of that already on the internet. I want a FLYING experience first, and great scenery second- each and every time. I want a platform that doesn’t throw up all over itself after an update and then users have to sit around for weeks waiting for the stuff you broke to get fixed.

In short, SLOW DOWN!!! Take your time. I don’t think your user community cares as much about you rushing stuff to market as it does about knowing that what you deliver is QUALITY when you release it.

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You kind of have your wish, as the October, and November updates are to be SU6& 7.

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What I’m really hoping happened within Microsobo is they’ve realized that adding new content overtop of a broken and deteriorating foundation is unsustainable. The more they add, the more the cracks in the foundation are revealing themselves and growing. And they’re stuck in this pattern of fixing 3 bugs, only to introduce 5 new ones due to underlying, unaddressed issues in the code. There’s only so far you can take that.

I would be quite happy to see SU6 and SU7 add exactly ZERO new features, but focus on chipping away at all the long-standing bugs that have been on the bug lists - some of them since launch. Of course, that’s not likely to happen that way. We already know the Air Races expansion is coming and will be released no matter what state the sim or the expansion pack itself is in.

But I’m really hoping that this is the turning point many of us have been hoping for.

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People need to stop dragging Asobo into this type of discussions. Management and Marketing at Microsoft are the ones calling shots on the timeline and content. Asobo has very little to say in this department. They are just people hired to do the work. If you want things to change at least figure out who you are talking to first.

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AMEN ! Loads of us “Quiet” simmers are hoping for the same thing.

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Correct. And ratings on the MS an Steam stores, as well as numbers of active players are dropping. I’m sure MS is taking notice. At least I hope that’s what’s happening and they’ve decided to switch gears as a result.

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I bought MSFS with certain expectations of what I’d get for my money. If all I wanted were detailed cockpit simulations I could have bought a PC (thankfully I don’t need to do that). I want a great SCENERY experience first and a detailed flying experience second - each and every time.

Ok, I’m being a little cheeky with the OP (and everything I’ve said a moment ago is true for me), but here’s the point:

The different aspects of the sim are important to different people. Suggestions to throw World Updates out of the window in pursuit of other content is a nonsense in my view because it disregards that people have differing priorities and disrespects those whose interests are not identical to the OP’s.

By all means, request the improvements you seek, but that’s no grounds to throw other content already in the plan under the bus. :thinking:

(and as has also been pointed out in the thread, MS/A are prioritising Sim Updates for the next two months (SU 6 and 7) but I would expect World Updates to continue thereafter)

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I could not agree more….

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It’s not about throwing out other content. There are fundamental things at the core of the software that are broken and have been since launch. They affect all aspects of the sim, not just flight models and such. They’re the reason we get graphical issues. They’re the reason 20 new bugs are introduced with every new update. They’re the reason you see terrain being drawn in when you’re right on top of it. They’re likely the reason for a lot of the crashes we see as well. These bugs have been “on the list” since the alpha test 18 months ago and are still there.

What needs to happen is those things need to be fixed once and for all instead of being pushed to the back burner in favor of adding new content - be that world update or other new features. There are a lot of features being worked on that I would love to see sooner rather than later. But I don’t want to see those features implemented in a broken state due to other pre-existing issues. Fix the core issues before building on top of them and compounding issues. If you had a cracked, broken and crumbling foundation on your house that was in dire need of repair, but also wanted to build up a new second floor on it, which job would you do first?

This isn’t about pleasing one group of people and their needs over another. This is about fixing core issues so that future updates - be they world updates, game modes, or just actual flight-related upgrades, actually work and don’t introduce a bunch of other issues.

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This again… The art department has its own set of issues to fix…

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I see. And the people who work on scenery are also qualified to overhaul core performance problems?

Yes of course fixing core issues is key, but I suspect the demarcation of responsibilities is considerably more nuanced that this thread implies.

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Yep, I couldn’t agree more.
And from we the simmer’s point of view, from the outset this should have been MSobo’s
strategy to drive development forward.

WARNING: there now follows a short reality check. Those of an… altruistic disposition
might wish to look away:

However, sadly, MSobo didn’t wake up one morning enthused with the urge to embark on
some kind of cathartic, philanthropic enterprise. Oh no, for them - and not unreasonably -
MSFS 2020 is all about profits!
It is profits that drives MSobo’s every strategic decision.
And it is profits [or the lack of therein] that will ultimately decide whether MSFS 2020 is
hailed a critical success or derided as just another Spruce Goose!

Of course I vehemently hope that it is the former.
So for now, at least, I declare myself as: along for the ride.

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World updated haven’t been so ■■■■-hot. Long standing issues with photogrammetry and LOD issues that cause our nice new mountains in the Alps, as well as all the fjords of Norway, to get dawn in as we’re on top of them are all long standing issues. It would be better if they fixed the underlying issues with landscape and PG so that they don’t have to constantly do workarounds in their programming of new updates - world or otherwise.

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Focusing on quality improvements over feature growth absolutely seems to be the right call at this point.

Not sure how the world updates are standing in the way of quality improvements though. The quality problems we see mainly affect the simulator functionality, not the scenery content. I would expect the feature development pipeline and the content development pipeline to be rather decoupled. If one of those pipelines need to stall to address their acquired technical debt the other pipeline could still continue.

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Couldn’t agree more. The product is there, it’s just like a badly tuned piano at the moment and needs working on.
My biggest frustration is the memory leak issue on long haul flights and the still constant CTDs which many, including myself, are experiencing.

I had a degree of expectation when I bought the product, and overall I’m impressed with it. However I’m frustrated with all the bugs which keep on appearing after each WU and the other issues I mentioned above , not seemingly being addressed.

I wont get onto the stock airliners on the game, that’s a completely new subject in itself. However I did see that they are recruiting people with experience in modelling airliners and programming relating to autopilot FMC etc, so perhaps that will be addressed in time.

Take your time ASOBO and get the game working first and foremost, then work on the aesthetics.

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Yep, agreed.
And a nice piano analogy to boot. Splendid!

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I have to agree with this.
I approach my use of FS2020 from the standpoint of the real world pilot. Many of the people I know personally in the aviation community share my feelings.
We are NOT gamers. We do NOT enjoy slamming our controllers around like children laughing while we attempt to “fly” a 747 through a tunnel inverted.
We use the sim as we would a REAL simulator. This means we sit in a cockpit as we would the real plane and “fly it” using as close to actual visual cues as possible as we attempt to recreate in the sim what we would EXPECT to be seeing and doing in the actual aircraft accomplishing virtually what we would wish to accomplish in the real airplane.
I can tell you we are NOT getting this at present. The graphics are beautiful but the reality compared to actual flying is severely lacking.
The flight model needs serious work. MUCH could be done to bring the FDE closer to actual physics and aerodynamics; not necessarily perfect but a LOT closer than it is now.
ATC interfacing is a joke really, even VFR let alone for IFR flight.
Just last evening I went for a local flight from my airport of choice, KILG. Returning to KILG I had to scan back and forth from near and far to get the KILG tower on the list. It finally appeared when I was showing 5 miles DME from the field. After being cleared to land ATIS opened up over riding Com 1 with both a running tape and voiceover. I had to reselect the tower to silence it.
Then ATC started repeated requests for some aircraft not even visually seen by me on the runway to clear the runway and take the next exit. This went on and on and on and on.
I finally landed ignoring ATC which by this time had “forgotten” I was even in the pattern.
There are other issues as well. Shutting the engine down, right in the middle of my shutdown procedure I get kicked out of shutting down and automatically get sent to a new window so I can “enter a logbook entry for the flight”. I can THEN return to my shutdown procedure by making a mouse click. Talk about an immersion killer !!! Things like this are inexcusable presented by a company selling flight “as real as it gets”.
It really saddens me to see this program, which has such tremendous potential being wasted through a multi-platform marketing approach that seems to be geared heavily toward the gaming market while leaving the real world aviation market behind.
I can tell you that if, in the end analysis this program misses the mark with the real world aviation community it will be because Asobo concentrated too heavily on local attractions at the expense of issues such as ATC and the FDE.
Dudley Henriques
MVP Microsoft Games (Flight Simulator)
2006-2007
President Emeritus
International Fighter Pilots Fellowship

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I sometimes think they have too many irons in the fire in terms of code branches and length of life of those branches such that they are hesitant to do hotfixes and when these branches merge into the main trunk we sometimes seem to end up with bug regression (merges can be problematic, especially long life branches that took on a life of their own). Bugs you thought had been fixed rear their ugly head again.

I think this is an independent issue from content creation (although somewhat related).

I’ve watched quite a few of the Q&A’s and never come away satisfied I am any the wiser as to what direction they are taking and what their priorities really are. I find the Q&A’s quite shallow tbh.

I sometimes am not convinced there is enough support for third party developers either. Apparently there was some “rendering channel” that was temporarily disabled that caused the PMG DC-6 to not gain any FPS boost like other planes did in SU-5. I am still waiting to find out when this is going to be resolved and even the 3rd party dev has no idea despite contact with Asobo.

Maybe now that SU5 is out of the way, perhaps the next Q&A will genuinely give us something to hang our hat on and they will start to address some of the long outstanding complaints.

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That’s simply because Maverick Top Gun got postponed.

Totally agree with the OP – enough of the world updates (hate to say this) and focus on fixing the sim.

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