Starting the discussion. I'm going to call myself a of digital art student. I'm learning 3ds Max and Photoshop and most recently, I'm working with 3ds Max and the Prepar3D SDK to make objects for FSX. I am investing the effort in 3ds max because of its popularity with video game developers and the transferability of those skills. For me, Prepar3d looks like the flight simulator I've been waiting for. That it carries such a steep price tag is unfortunately in that it probably keeps it from being the FSX successor we need. If MS Flight can draw more people by being more game like, I'm all for it. The question is whether it will still have the same utility for us hardcore simmers. From a designer's perspective the more eye balls the better. I hope MS Flight will be like Prepar3d, a evolutionary step of FSX and not a complete redesign. Ideally, these programs will have enough in common that a project can be designed with an eye to both platforms. Among the things I'm trying to get my head around is how to design for PP3D and have as much work as possible ported to a FSX version of the same project. Perhaps because of the cost there seems to be virtually no discussion of designing for PP3D vs FSX, even on the Prepar3d forum. I don't have PP3D yet but that is just because I have been juggling so many other projects. I see the Prepar3D Developer Network Program gets you 2 copies of Prepar3D for $9.95 per month. That works better for me than the $499 regular purchase price. 3ds Max is extraordinarily expensive. US$3,495! I am nominally a student and the fully functioning student version is free. For some it maybe time to go back to school. Per the license agreement the student version can not be used for commercial projects. 3ds Max is also astonishingly complex, and learning it takes commitment. Any thoughts?