Since the last weekend, simmers have been curious about an image popping up on some sim-related companies’ social media (us, included).
Theories were varied and some of them wild. From new aircraft, to new versions of sims (like X-Plane 12), people’s imagination ran wild.
Do we need an association?
We need more positive things in the community that help newcomers and veterans alike. Or, at least, that will connect newcomers and veterans.
Yes, we have the Facebooks and the Twitters and all that stuff. But with that we also have the toxicity that plagues those mediums. Just look around the groups you participate at and see what’s going in there. There are a lot of people helping but you also have those… Who don’t.
Perhaps FSA can become a safe space where people can find and help each other. And by being a paid service, people may see it more as a “serious tool” for their simming and less as a place to stir any proverbial pots.
The subscription fee may act as a firewall.
Oh yes, there’s a subscription fee. US$30/year or US$0.08/day if you want to see it that way.
Why do I have to pay for content I can find online?
I’ve seen that question pop up a few times on social media after people found out about FSA. And the truth is: we don’t. You don’t.
Flight Simulation Association is a space of its own with its own content, provided by several partners (including HeliSimmer.com) that may benefit both the community and the partners as well. If that’s something you can value, perhaps you should learn more about it.
Like with any other product or service out there, it’s up to you to decide if you think FSA is for you and if it’s worth that US$30/year or US$0.08/day fee I mentioned before.
Here’s the official press-release:
In partnership with over 50 developers and content creators, the co-founders of FlightSimExpo are proud to announce the launch of Flight Simulation Association (FSA). FSA is a new, independent association designed to advance flight simulation as a hobby, a pilot training aid, and as a means to explore the passion for virtual flight. Anyone can join at www.flightsimassociation.com.
For new simmers and real-world pilots, FSA provides guides, learning resources, and webinars to help get started in simulation. For experienced simmers, the association offers over $500 in exclusive discounts, in-depth, unique access to developers, and the ability to locate nearby simmers.
“Like with FlightSimExpo, we are hoping to spur an independent, simmer-driven effort to promote our hobby,” says Evan Reiter, co-founder of FSA. “We think existing simmers will love the wide variety of product discounts, but we also hope they’ll get involved to share their ideas and experiences so we can build great resources for those joining our hobby for the first time.”
Starting today, more than $500 in discounts across flight simulation’s top products are available through FSA. These include latest releases and popular products from A2A Simulations, Aerosoft, Flight Velocity, Flightbeam, FlyTampa, FS2Crew, Honeycomb, iniBuilds, Javiator, Just Flight, LatinVFR, PacSim, PILOT’S, PropWash Simulation, RealSimGear, Stay Level Avionix, TFDi Design, Virtual Fly, and X-Plane.org.
FSA members can also register for an exclusive group on the Prepar3D forums where they’ll have closer access to the development team to ask questions. By joining the FSA Discount Group on OrbxDirect, FSA members can save 20% on a revolving suite of top-selling Orbx products, including BASE, Vector, openLC, TrueEarth, and more. There’s even a 10% discount on purchases of X-Plane 11 from Laminar Research.
“But it’s much more than discounts: we want people to help us build FSA together so we can continue some of the cool things we started doing at FlightSimExpo 2019,” continues Evan. “Imagine more advertisements for home flight simulation in real-world magazines and at Oshkosh and SUN ‘n FUN. What if, someday, there was a single place you could search for add-ons and airports across all platforms and developers? These are the types of things that become possible when you have an independent organization that works to support both flight simmers and developers.”
For the first time ever, FSA will make it possible for simmers to find other enthusiasts in their local area! By creating a Simmer Search profile, FSA members can search for and connect with others who are nearby, creating mentorship and social opportunities beyond the big annual conferences.
“If you’ve ever thought that there might be other simmers in your neighborhood, now you can find out!” says co-founder Phil Coyle. “Available for FSA members who opt in, Simmer Search lets you create a profile and then search for others. You can connect via email to get help, exchange ideas, and even sim together in-person, when it’s safe to do so. We hope this eventually results in simmers creating local clubs and meet-ups throughout the year.”
In addition to Discounts and Simmer Search, FSA will offer live and recorded webinars, allowing members the opportunity to engage directly with developers between in-person shows. The initial schedule features scenery design with Flightbeam, sneak previews from X-Plane, PC building advice, and tips from real-world airline pilots.
FSA also offers free Getting Started Guides designed to provide information to beginners, including curated lists of top resources. Additional members-only guides provide information about scenery, navdata, charts, tablets, virtual reality, and more, featuring video content from popular content creators. There’s even a 5-part Learning Flight series featuring some of the most scenic areas in the United States.
Like the conference, Flight Simulation Association is built by the community. Through surveys, feedback, screenshot sharing, and more, members will help drive the content on the site, ensuring it remains an active reflection of our world. FSA encourages experienced simmers, content creators, news organizations, and others in flight simulation and real-world aviation to Contribute to the content and offerings of the association.
To start accessing the $500+ in members-only discounts, simmers can visit www.flightsimassociation.com and create a free, 30-day trial account. A full membership is $30/year.
“With the community, we hope to build something amazing together. We’re excited to hear what you think!”
FlightSimExpo is North America’s community-driven flight simulation conference. The first FlightSimExpo was held in 2018 in Las Vegas, followed by a 2019 event in Orlando that attracted almost 1,700 attendees and more than 60 exhibitors. FlightSimExpo 2021 is scheduled to take place on June 4-6, 2021 at Town and Country Resort, San Diego and online. FlightSimExpo is proudly produced by active participants of the flight simulation community.
About Flight Simulation Association
Flight Simulation Association was launched in March 2021 as a means for advancing flight simulation’s role as a hobby and pilot training aid. Through product discounts, webinars, and learning content, the association will act as a hub for the flight simulation community to explore the passion for virtual aviation. Members can join the association for $30/year at www.flightsimassociation.com. Flight Simulation Association is operated by FlightSimExpo Management Inc.