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Anna Cicognani

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Anna Cicognani last won the day on January 14

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  1. Hi all - in reading this thread, and others not in this forum, there are a few things I feel need to be clarified: 1. the Throwback Thursday series is something Ed Correia (who is an Orbx "veteran" as you know) is putting together as a series of ported airports. The quality is not expected to be exceptional or groundbreaking, and perhaps that is a mistake, but we are making them super cheap for people to bring content they loved in FSX and P3D to MSFS. There is quite an amount of work going into these, so we still sell them (even though cheaply) to recover some of the costs. Believe me, we make zero money from them - unfortunately - but at least we pay off the developers so they can feed themselves a bit longer; 2. Jarrad Marshall, much loved and respected by the whole community, is taking a long break. He has not announced yet when he will be back, but when he is ready, we will welcome him back with open arms; 3. Our team in Havant, UK (which still includes Russ White, incidentally) was set up around June 2019 and has some high quality and talented people who are getting better and better at understanding flight simming and what kind of standards are required. It is not a quick process to train someone to those levels, but that is a journey we decided to take; 4. We have now a much bigger team compared to 3 years ago (by a factor of at least 4), and many are now full time employees instead of being hobbists, so - yes - we release more content than before, except it just looks we are doing things "faster," but in reality the speed is coming from the fact we have more people in the Company; 5. Around the direction of the Company, I have spoken about it elsewhere, but in brief, we are striving to excel at making add-ons. We recently launched our first aircraft as a bit of an experiment to see if we *could* actually do it, and we love the result. We will do more of that! There are some very true things in this thread, and some myths as well. But one thing that is coming through (for me at least) is the love for the Company, what it stands for and the desire to keep Orbx at the forefront of innovation and quality. Exactly where we want to be! Yes, the entry of MSFS has created a lot of content dilution - just check how many more devs / creators have joined the ranks in the MS Marketplace! - so it is hard when one of our devs releases a product and it gets lost in the noise, or gets so criticised that discourages people to stay in the industry. This is true for everyone, I think. Constructive criticism is always very welcome as like all humans we make mistakes and think something could be great, but it misses the mark, and sometimes you just don't know why. BTW despite some slightly unsavory comments made ;-), we will keep this thread open so we can have a robust (and I hope constructive) discussion around these topics, and what it is that makes Orbx great, today and tomorrow - not what it did 2 years ago, that environment does not exist any longer. We are trying to adapt to what we can work with now, and with that, invent the future. It would be great to do this as a community as much as a Company. Cheers!
  2. There's no buck passing here. We really are waiting for MS to release the update for us. We do love Orbx Central, for all sorts of reasons.
  3. We did not have access to the UK update until it was released publicly. Agree it would have been good to start working on this earlier (we did ask to have early beta access). Personal thanks for supporting us as we update the pack - working as fast as we can :-)
  4. Ha! Well, I live very close to that Aerodrome too and I thought some country flavour would be nice on video, especially in COVID times... I can buy you back that beer at the Robbo pub sometime? ;-)
  5. Happy New Year everyone! I wanted to give you an update on what has been happening @ Orbx and a bit of an outlook for the next little while. First up, the production team, under Ed’s leadership, has been super busy in the past few months, releasing a number of awesome products, including some of my favourites like Cityscape Sydney, Graz, Newcastle, the more recent Canary Islands for X-Plane from our internal teams (thanks also to Frank, Tony and Holger), and a number of highly detailed and charming airports from our indies, like Burbank, Malmö, Olbia, Göteborg. So many to name, it’s an embarrassment of riches! Our not-so-new-any-more Havant Studio in the UK is really producing outstanding visuals. We have such a great breadth of skills there, guided by Greg’s expert hand, with some real gems in the pipeline (check out the Coming Soon page if you have not seen it yet). We have also been flat chat freshening up our brand and marketing - you may recall we had an extensive initiative last July (#flyjuly) which we look at repeating this year - plus recently we have redesigned our newsletters and email comms. Kalum, our digital marketing manager, is the guy to blame here ;-) and we have added Alberto as our digital design lead, who is refreshing our designs and looking at how to best keep things simple. Our tech team (Ben, Josh, Mitch, Luke, and a couple new additions, Adam and Sagar) have released the first version of Volanta. This is still in beta, but will soon be released to everyone as a free platform, with some unique and exciting premium features to come. You would have read the release note already and we hope to see many many of you picking this up. The team has so much in store for Volanta in the coming months... stay tuned. The launch of Microsoft Flight Simulator has kept us on our toes, not really knowing what to expect in terms of customer preference for products, or how the simulator was going to handle some of our scenery products - we are pretty happy with the way it has turned out, even if it has been a steep learning curve. Watch out for the upcoming Orbx video in the MS partnership series, all things being equal, it should be out on 28 January. We are still working with MS and Asobo to make MSFS better and better. The video will have some info on how we do what we do (but no secret sauce just yet). With the various lockdown restrictions and international travel banned, it has not been easy for any of us a bit all over the globe, with lots of ups and downs, but Hangouts and Discord have helped a lot. You all know we have developers and artists all over the world, so we are pretty used to working remotely, at all hours of the day and night. Still it is kinda tricky at times to sync Europe, Canada (West) and Australia (East and West), but we mix night owls and early birds just fine ;-) All in all, Orbx has grown quite a bit in the past 18 months. We have more partners on board, strutting their stuff on OrbxDirect and Central. We are very fortunate to have some big names joining us recently in this journey to create the best catalogue of flight sim products there is. Developing for multiple platforms has been quite a challenge, but I want to reassure you that X-Plane and Prepar3D are firm on our radar (no pun intended), as well as - of course - MS Flight Simulator. Our HQ in Essendon Fields will also become the subject of a new version of YMEN with some cool details for the upcoming 100th anniversary of the airport. You may be able to take a sneak peek of what’s happening @ Orbx behind that glass on the apron! I won’t end this update saying Orbx has a long runway in front, because it would sound a bit too on the nose ;-) but let me say we have some exciting initiatives coming up. We are growing and expanding, we are crazy about all things flight sim, and some other games too (Cyberpunk 2077 anyone?). We want you all to be part of this journey, so please keep sending us feedback, comments and your wish lists. Though the team is bigger and we can achieve more than ever before, first and foremost, we want the quality of our airports and scenery to remain top shelf, so top it’s on the highest shelf, the one hardest to reach, and a little bit exclusive too. That’s what Orbx stands for. Expand your horizons.
  6. I am closing off this topic now - thanks everyone for the comments and questions. Stay tuned and fly safe ;-)
  7. We will definitely continue to add content for and support XP and P3D. MSFS will bring in new users: some will be gamers, others simmers. We hope some of the gamers (who may only access the sim for curiosity) will turn into "hard core" simmers (or maybe even soft-core? ;-) ). I hope this will expand the universe of sim users, so it's not just us growing, but the whole industry. That would be fab!
  8. Great point John. This is also what we will consider once the full version is launched. We love making (awesome) TE regions!
  9. Hi and thanks for the welcome. :-) John is still with Orbx and he is also one of the directors of a newly formed Board. Never too far! :-)
  10. Benissimo. Sempre bello accontentare i nostri utenti! :-) (from your name, Massimo, I'm indulging in believing you speak Italian!)
  11. Our efforts are focused on bringing some top notch airports across and producing new content too. The sim is already very good, as we know, but there is room to making custom content which is our favourite swim lane ;-)
  12. We are starting with airports, but we have a range of ideas.... :-)
  13. We are considering special x-platform prices for current customers who have bought content for P3D and XP, which will also appear on MSFS. We haven't really decided anything yet, but the intention is to make it easy and affordable to use the same content across platforms.
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