Is VMWare img different from installed version?

I am totally new to FreeBSD. I am normally using MacOS and Windows, and have also some experience with Linux on Embedded devices.
I had expected the img to be similar to an installed Ubuntu, but it did not even have X installed. During the installation of the xorg and laer firefox I came across several difficulties, and tweaks go get things up and running.
Is this a VMWare img problem only, or should I expect the same when I do a complete installation on hardware?
PS: It is exactly stuff like this which makes OS like FreeBSD and Linux a nerds option, and completely unused by the greater public.
Yes, you will find similar behavior on physical hardware. The handbook is wonderful and contains a lot of the information needed to get up and running. If you're looking for more of an "Ubuntu experience" but with something BSD-based, consider trying PC-BSD. It has a graphical installer and installs Xorg and a graphical desktop by default.