Currently, the simulation scene, both in terms of planes and trains, is dominated by Dovetail Games, among a handful of others. I was excited therefore when Microsoft confirmed their new Flight Simulator, partly because of how awesome it looks, but also because it might introduce some competition.
It's an expensive proposition to get into simulations at the moment. Dovetail's Train Simulator, for example, is infamous for having nearly $10,000 worth of DLC. Yes, you heard that right.
I was disappointed therefore to learn that Microsoft Flight Simulator will be featuring a marketplace for paid mods.
There are a lot of third-party developers for simulators, who create add-on aircraft and more detailed airports, where the base game has only a basic representation. The new mod marketplace that Microsoft is planning to introduce will be open to both these developers, and general modders, meaning everyone will be able to sell their mods through the game.
On the one hand, having a financial incentive to create detailed re-creations of aircraft, for example, isn't a bad thing. However, there's also no longer an incentive for independent modders to offer free alternatives, as now there'll be an easy method for these modders to share - and make a profit from - their creations.
While there'll be an approval system in place for paid mods, the process appears to be relatively simple and free to do. Modders will also be able to set their own prices, meaning they could potentially charge over the odds for a product if they wanted to.
Of course, modders can still share their content for free through sites such as this one. What are your thoughts on Microsoft's plans to introduce a paid mod store? Let us know in the comments below.