MS Flight Add-On Store…Redux

My previous post has generated some interesting conversation in the AVSIM forums weighing in on my prediction regarding add-on content and MS Flight. Many argue that freeware will go away if users are forced to use a single repository for add-on content, but I think the folks at MS are smart enough to realize the detrimental effects that would have.

True, one user commented that this platform is not developed solely for the enthusiasts and we are a very minor segment of the whole. But even the efforts to create an SDK merits MS’s commitment to providing an extension of their core program – they are still very aware that they cannot create everything for everyone. There are still areas (planes, sceneries, airports, etc.) that can and will benefit from 3rd party development.

So having to re-develop older aircraft/scenery/etc. for use in MS Flight may be a struggle, but the opportunity to have that aircraft revisited by seasoned users and also be exposed to a much broader audience (through the Marketplace) will in my mind outweigh the potential negatives.  Something to ponder.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “MS Flight Add-On Store…Redux

  1. I have a feeling you’re right, Owen. In fact, the more I ponder this new way of distribution, the more optimistic I become, both as a ‘simmer and a third-party developer. Sure, it’ll take some getting used to, and there will no doubt be plenty of rocks in the road. We’re used to that each and every time the sim gets an update though, yes? Color me positive.

  2. balsterneb

    Just discovered this post.

    I recently saw the latest Microsoft Flight webisode (#3). It rather cryptically says something about “flying for free”. On one hand, it could just be some vague “freedom of flight” marketing message, but it’s got me wondering if they might be adopting a radically new business model — a basic product available for free, with both first-party and third-party add-ons downloadable from an “add-on store”.

    With such a model, the free product may have, say, a couple of aircraft and no high detail cities. You can then buy Microsoft created aircraft and scenery for small payments. And then the store will be opened up to the hundreds (thousands?) of third party add-ons, all of them easily discoverable, rateable and installable by the end users.

    As you say, it would probably mean locking down Microsoft Flight to unlicensed modifications, but if it means less pirated add-ons, I suspect most developers will be happy.

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