I guess I'm too nostalgic

Hello there and thank you for opening my post, which you’ve stumbled upon. Here, you’ll be reading about my story and emotions with and about Infinite Flight.

One thing is certain: I’ve always wanted to become a pilot, so automatically I’ve had an interest in flight simulation, as soon as it was accessible to me. At first, I wasn’t able to pay for anything, so I tried some of these games you get in Google Play Store. I knew that they were crap, but still, I somehow managed to enjoy the bad graphics, and everything, that was unrealistic. The one game I played the most was called: “Airplane!”

Sooner or later, I felt that something was missing, a sense of realism, to not just fly around a fictive area with no point. As I believe to this day, I thought, that realism in flight is mostly expressed through others. Not flying alone, to work with each other, also in dense situations, so I searched for: “flight simulator live”. Now this was back in the day, when Intel’s 5th Gen processors were top notch, so as you probably can imagine, so, throughout my scrolling, I found bad graphics, clickbates and just simply games, that couldn’t even do multiplayer.

until…

Infinite Flight came up pretty soon whilst scrolling. After checking out most of the other apps, I took a look at it and I liked what I saw. From the advertising pictures I could see, I knew, that this simulator could have just what I wanted, so I payed the 5€ back in the day and opened it. I was ✨bamboozled✨. I immediately fell in love with that program, because I was fascinated by me being finally able to control the flaps and so on…

And here comes the best part: When I finally became able to join the training server, I enjoyed everything! And that lasted a long time, a couple of years I did that. Okay, back then the graphics weren’t the best, but I definitely loved everything else: The app itself, the interface, planning the flight, starting, taxiing and taking off by order, flying and landing and taxiing to parking by order. All of that was great to do and made the graphics seem irrelevant, but all of that would be much less worth, if Infinite Flight couldn’t do multiplayer.

That was my peak of enjoyment, knowing that I wasn’t flying alone, that in real life and time there were people “next to me” on the same server enjoying the same thing in the same way as I did. That all were simulating realism through serious participation. During and after a flight, I had a wonderful feeling, a we-feeling, a feeling of community, because of how it all played out: A usual flight took place from / to one of the following airports: KLAX, KNUC, KONT, KSAN and KPSP. After starting the plane, one would be cleared for pushback, depending on there being room, due to so many players. Depending on the same thing, one would be cleared to taxi to a wished or assigned runway and because the airport was so full, there would be a line of aircraft waiting to take off. Exactly then was when the feelings described above started to take place. The feeling of all waiting organised for the same magical procedure of taking off. After takeoff, I’d change the frequency and make myself on my way to my destination. When I came to the vicinity of the airport, the tower would either clear me to land or make me wait due to heavy traffic or in an extreme case make me divert to another airport. Again, there is that feeling of realism, something really going on and something being important, especially when landing: I remember, one time I was coming in to KSAN and everything looked perfect: The wind was just right, my approach was good and the tower was really nice to me. He kept a lot of planes waiting on the ground for me and I thanked him for that, he replied “You’re welcome”. Two minutes before landing, my tablet didn’t have any more power, so it turned itself off and these were the happiest and saddest moments of the simulator for me. Anyway, the meaning of all that I find to this day incredible.

For me, these were the best times of Infinite Flight. After that, a couple of updates came that improved the graphics and changed the payment system, so that was all right. But then there was an update, which made us able to fly all around the world, not anymore only in designated regions. Now I embraced that update just like everyone else who has been waiting for it, but sadly enough I witnessed, that that was the update, that stopped the simulator being able to give me the beautiful feeling, that I am writing about. It all happened slowly but surely, first the updates came, that made the sim gaining more popularity than ever. After that people started to fly less at the airports I listed above in California, but rather flew from and to where they wanted. As that got so common, that sometimes these airports became empty, the TS from one point on wasn’t taken seriously anymore, about which I have written a more detailed post in the past.

So sadly enough, after the subjectively seen best times of IF, I began to lose interest in the simulator, I began to fly less frequently until slowly but surely, I completely stopped two years ago. Especially since I tried Xplane and bought MSFS, sadly I realised, that I had a much similar experience to IF, but with more realism and better graphics, so since then, I began to stick to that.

“So why post that?”, you may ask, why am I telling you about this? Because, during my present vacation I do not have my PC with me, so I am “limited” to Infinite Flight, which I tried out yesterday, and I was a bit sad, because I felt the special feeling missing, after two years of not thinking about it. The flight reminded me about my best times with IF and about them being gone.

Now please, do not get me wrong, I do not have any intention to talk badly about IF. The updates I was writing about were probably the best thing to ever happen to Infinite Flight’s growth. Of course this will attract more people, and of course it is good, that you could finally fly anywhere in the world with better graphics and better realism (i.e. the than newly added in A350). Actually, I am fascinated by the unthinkable amount of work that the programmers put in to creating the program and working on it so severely. So, as a disclaimer: Props to the programmers! It is good, that we have a team of programmers, that take so much care of the program and I think that this here is a unique community. I feel like there is no other community like this one, so Infinite Flight has become really great…

…but sadly not for me. In conclusion, I miss the good old days with bad graphics, when IF really felt different to fly than all the other simulators, because of the community feeling, I described above. I miss having my takeoff being planned in, same goes for the landings. I miss these dense situations, where everyone is dependant on each other, where you are a substantial part of the system, in which everyone is having fun trough each other. I miss being so passionate about the simulator and community, that I posted in 2019, how amazing I thought the Niue airport was. Once I gave IF a five star rating in Google Play Store, saying that this is the best flight simulator and somehow I feel bad because thanks to my PMDG 737 experience, I can’t support my statement anymore.

I really loved this flight simulator, because only IF offered me the live experience I was looking for. Then the app began to change in a popular and growing way, that was probably great for the most simmers. My emotions couldn’t follow this path. At the end I must say, that I am very thankful that I had the opportunity to have such an experience. There are probably not a lot of people that have an equivalent to that.

So what do you think about that all? Do you feel different than me or is my post relatable? I’d be more than glad to read your comment :)

Thank you for reading!

Alex

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I am not reading all of that but yeah for real I agree

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My guy wrote an essay! Although, I don’t completely agree with you, as I’ve only been flying for 1 1/2 year.

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Yeah hahah

Tbh idk how long I was flying, but I’m pretty sure, it has been longer than that

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Also, is the picture in your Profile the MSFS UI

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Yes, you can see the UI a bit. And come to think of it, I must have been flying longer than for 2 yrs, because I stopped in 2021 and I was already flying quite some time before my post in 2019

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Oh, okay. Played MSFS once when I went to a resort house with an XBox for my cousins first bday

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You’re saying, apparently, what tips the balance for you is the hardware capability of a non-mobile platform. So, I’m afraid I can’t agree with your logic.

Nostalgia is fine, but then you are praising while putting down IF?

Beyond my favorable subjective opinions about the evolving features over time (I started prior to 2017 I think), the objective ratings of IF have to be taken into account as more relevant.

But there’s also the human factor of how the close-knit team of IF staff interacts with the community, in a way you won’t see with larger companies.

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No, you misunderstood me. Of course it would be an unfair comparison, non mobile vs mobile, but I wasn’t talking about that. What tipped the balance for me was the loss of live flying and feeling actually going on at crowded airports.

I do not intend to put IF down. I wrote that technically speaking, the program has come a huge way and that is something positive. Exactly which way the program has come along is something, that took the fun from me.

Absolutely correct, objective ratings should be taken into account, when you’re trying to make a statistical measurement. But that is not what my post is about. Here, I am sharing my story and emotions while finding people that agree / disagree and bout things are fine with me.

The last thing you added is also something that I find positive

I certainly believe people’s feelings should be respected, but I was going literally by what you wrote:

Thank you, I understand what you mean. That was not me trying to make a comparison, or trying to say what is better / worse. I was writing, how it played out for me

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