FARM SIM: Debating Axes at the Meeting in Magor

This is part 1 of a two-part post covering the behind-the-scenes design meetings for the Saitek Farming Simulator Hardware.

Saitek/Mad Catz were happy to welcome two of the senior developers from GIANTS Software, Manuel and Emil, to our Product Development studio in Magor, Wales to kick off the Farming Simulator Hardware Project. The three primary divisions of our NPD team were represented, covering Software, Industrial and Mechanical Design and of course, the Aesthetic Design team.

We at Saitek had already built a prototype using our 3D printer. The primary purpose of the sessions was to make sure that the wheel was the best it could be in terms of use within Farming Simulator 15 and that the ergonomic feel was accurate and immersive. Another reason for the meeting was to add in features and make sure there were enough axes and buttons to accommodate even the most advanced user.

In game cockpit
After a brief introduction of everyone’s roles and responsibilities, we kicked off the debate. The first session was spent with the GIANTS team walking us through all the essential features of FS15: the different tractors involved and the different types of play, whether it’s ploughing, logging or harvesting and the types of control that would be ideal for each of these key applications.
The prototype had been developed with a 900 degree rotation on the main wheel, analogue thumb sticks as the main buttons on the wheel, as well as a rotating wheel and separate joystick built into the side panel.
The limitations of the HID protocol mean that only so many analogue axis are able to be recognized from a single device, so the selection of what is needed to be analogue (rather than a simple on/off digital toggle) needed to be firmed up.


Steering of the tractor, pedals, the two thumb-sticks, the separate joystick, and cruise control had been assumed to be needed. After some heated debate, the team decided that cruise control would be better implemented with a + and – button working in increments. Also hotly debated was whether to make the main joystick analogue and how useful this would be, for example, with logging in FS15. Six axes would be needed to move the arm of the logger crane which pretty much dictated that the lower right stick needed to be fully analogue.


Ultimately, the solution that all agreed upon is to have the left thumbstick as a full 2-axis analogue controller, the joystick as a full 3 axis analogue controller and the right thumbstick (on the wheel) to be changed to a standard gaming d-pad.


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edustation Bringing STEM Education Across The United States


Networked edustation Flight Simulators at One World The Cooper Union

Today we are spotlighting edustation who have been bringing all-inclusive starter flight simulators to schools from Brooklyn to Los Angeles. Their edustation Flight Simulators feature Saitek products and are marketed primarily to elementary and middle schools all in the name of STEM education and raising enthusiasm for aviation in the youth of America. Continue reading

edustationJay Leboff, the man behind edustation, believes that Project Based Learning is the key to unlocking the minds and imaginations of students. To that end his team have created 9 tutored missions teaching students how to fly: takeoffs, landings, flying patterns, radio navigation, and more.


Jey Leboff giving instructions


Linda Curtis-Bey NYC DOE

Sometimes the students teach the teachers!

edustation is part of Hotseat and they sell more than educational simulators. Recently they’ve sent us some great pics of the X55 Rhino mounted on their cockpit!

Click here to learn more about edustation.

Great article on Science Friday.

edustation and Saitek will be attending FlightSimCon 2015 in Windsor Locks, CT.

Need Saitek equipment?

Girls Flight Club Low Res


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Microsoft Flight Simulator X: Steam Edition Retail Version!

FSX_dvd insert sample

We’re excited to announce that Saitek has partnered up with Dovetail Games to distribute at retail a boxed version of the immensely popular Microsoft Flight Simulator X: Steam Edition game. As one of the World’s Most Favorite Flight Simulators, the game enables you to take off from anywhere in the world, flying some of the most iconic aircraft to any one of 24,000 destinations. Plan your own flight in Free Flight mode, or test your flying prowess in missions including Search and Rescue, Test Pilot, Carrier Operations, and more.

Included in the box is your personal Boarding Pass and Steam Product Activation Code, a Quick Start Guide and a new catalog covering the full range of Saitek’s Pro Flight products. Also included is a 15% off coupon for the First Flight Bundle!

Take Control of 24 Meticulously-rendered aircraft ranging from single prop aircraft to fighter jets and helicopters and test your flight skills through over 80 challenging missions around the world. Fly solo offline or compete against friends in thrilling online multiplayer Air Races and explore the world of aviation with weather effects, seasonal changes and time of day all impacting your experience.

Boxed version will be available late spring 2015. Click here to pre-order.

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2015 Youth Flight Simulation Championship in Nanjing

Wincheers1Saitek is proud to be a part of the 2015 Youth Flight Simulation Championship in Nanjing, China. Our distributor Wincheers has signed a contract with the China General Administration of Sport for the event which will happen in July. In addition to sponsoring the event for RMB200,000 Wincheers is supplying the Pacific AV8R flight stick for the tournament. Continue reading

The Pacific AV8R is the exclusive device for the 2015 Youth Flight Simulation Championship

The Pacific AV8R is the exclusive device for the 2015 Youth Flight Simulation Championship

The first round training course was held on January 17th and various Saitek products were used to gain experience.

More info on the event can be found here, here, and here.

Good luck to all participants!



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FlightSimCon 2015: Saitek On Approach For First Time

Banner_1200x700-FSC-2015Saitek is pleased to announce that for the first time we are sponsoring and exhibiting at FlightSimCon at the New England Air Museum. In addition to exhibiting our Pro Flight Simulator products, we’ll have givevaways and possibly some important announcements. Frooglesim will be stopping by the booth so you can visit him as well. We’ll have more details as the weekend approaches so stay tuned!  Continue reading

If you are a desktop flight simulation enthusiast or a pilot looking for more information about how desktop flight simulation can benefit you—this event is for you!

FlightSimCon is an annual aviation and flight simulation conference designed to bring pilots and flight simmers together in an interactive social setting. Conference attendees have the opportunity to meet other simulation enthusiasts, experience how online flight simulation can benefit student and rated pilots, and engage with exhibitors and speakers to learn about improving their desktop flight simulators.

Go here now to register for FlightSimCon!

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