I used to be a gamer back in the day so I always find “The Best 100 PC Games Ever” lists irresistible. So while killing time at the airport I picked up the latest issue of PC Gamer. Flight Simulator X was awarded 52nd place on the list. Not bad for a niche game. PC Gamer continues: “FSX is a place that you can wander around for a lifetime and never see everything. Around every corner there’s a new masterfully modeled ride or region waiting to be explored”. I couldn’t have said it better myself…

There are several other niche games on the list, and it just goes to show that dumbing down a game to make it commercial isn’t always a recipe for success. In fact, niche games are the core of PC Gaming and most of the best selling and most popular games of all time are surprisingly nerdy. Just think about it. Civilization, Sim City, Railroad Tycoon, Minecraft, UFO: Enemy Unknown. Not exactly arcade, but sophisticated timeless games that have sold millions and become legends.

As for the latest PC Gamer they had lots of surprising articles. I mean, isn’t the world of PC gaming dominated by fantasy role playing games, first person shooters and football managers? Well, think again! In their best 100 games ever list I found titles like Red Baron, OMSI, Silent Hunter III and IL-2 Sturmovik. Previews of Faster Than Light, X-Plane 10, Total War: Shogun 2 and a special report on driving sims had me entertained. Too bad I barely have time to get airborne in FSX a few hours each week…

Tim Edwards, the editor of PC Gamer, said in his editorial that he felt the more detailed you focused the game, the more passionate and occasionally wide your audience gets (insert sound of hammer hitting nail on the head here). When those who create a product are passionate and knowledagble about what they’re doing it often shows in the product and customers act accordingly. The Flight Simulator franchise and all the third party addon developers are proof of exactly that. Dedication, passion and focus on details have made FSX into a collective work of art.

It’s hard not to think of Microsoft FLIGHT after reading PC Gamer. It is a product so deprived of passion and respect for what makes PC gaming great that it stands naked in front of everybody like a beggar on a beach of gold. It’s single reason for existing is to make money. And before you ask, I’m not against making money, in fact I applaud anyone who can, but money should never be the goal. Money should be a reward for those who risk it all in pursuit of perfection in whatever field they have talent and are infinitely passionate about.


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