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Before getting to the results of our survey, it is very important to harsh out all the limitations in the data collection.

-The purpose of the survey was to assist me in deciding how to spend my time creating add-on sceneries for the community. We are in a transitional period for flight simulator development with many possible options for content generation.

-Overall, none of the questions were designed to be predictive in interpretation.

-The sample size is relatively small, about 30 people gave their time and thought to the answers. Given that my sceneries have been downloaded approximately 1000 times, a 3% sample size for a voluntary questionnaire is actually pretty good response.

-In no way were the results of this survey intended to represent the flight simulator community as a whole. It was published only on 3 weblinks, all closely affiliated with my personal flight sim activities. The most succinct way to state this is: the community (hopefully) represented in this survey is the community to which I feel most closely conjoined. Please apply this filter to any of my comments regarding flight simmers in general, or the unspecified “community”.

Question 1 hopefully quantifies an idea stated in a previous brain fart , namely that most flight simmers are using more than one simulator these days. Within the limits of the community that responded, easy to have predicted more skew toward DCS/P3D than to X-Plane as an alternate platform. This skew is repeated in other question responses as well. More interesting is DCS=P3D and it’s implications for the other elements measured by the survey.

Q1Question 1

Question 2 presented some pleasant surprises regarding online MP activity. Given how restrictive the ability to multiplayer in P3D is, most surprising was the high percentage of activity on this platform. The “Other” category had a lot (relatively speaking) of responses including many of the WWII and WWI combat flight Sims.

Q2Question 2

Question 3 was designed with the least amount of pre-conceived notion from me. It did not distinguish between MIL vs CIV flying or any other subtleties. Heartening to me to see 30% of my community say they use these resources. As I have mentioned in private conversations to many of my fellow flight simmers, real world military pilots are under ATC on every flight with most of their flight hours under civilian ATC.

Q3Question 3

Question 4 gets to the meat of the survey’s purpose. The most interesting elements here are DCS being the most widely used secondary platform and the low showing of FSX-SE as a primary.

q4Question 4

Question 5 is online equivalent of Question 4. This is the 3rd set of responses that highlight the P3D/DCS comparison. Note how in Question 4, 31% of folks reported P3D as their primary solo sim but only 14% reported it as their primary MP sim. DCS has a complementary presentation. In Question 4, no one reported DCS as their primary solo sim. In Question 5, DCS ranks very favorably as secondary MP sim platform. Lastly, Falcon BMS presents as a 3rd or 4th choice for solo sim but ranks very favorably as an MP sim.

q5Question 5

It should come as no big reveal that I will continue to develop sceneries for FSX for a long while to come. With the introduction of FSX-SE, FSX has at least 3-5 years left in it. If designed with some forethought, many of my FSX sceneries should go to P3D relatively easily. There may be features that do not translate or other limitations but the basic elements should convert well. For the USN MIL flight simmers, DCS may well be the next frontier. A lot depends on how much effort Eagle Simulations is willing to put in SDK or other “helper” applications.

A final note of appreciation and gratitude for all those who took the time to answer the survey questions. Thru messages and forum posts, I know that many of you are also folks who actively contributed to one or more of my scenery projects. Your support and interaction makes the process worthwhile.

 

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