Microsoft Flight Simulator was one of the most popular simulator games of the 90s and early 2000s, until Microsoft closed the studio responsible for its development in 2009. The series made a brief return in 2012 with Microsoft Flight, although the title was critically panned and the studio was closed once more.
Now it appears that Microsoft Flight Simulator, in all its glory, will be returning once more to the world of PC gaming. Dovetail Games has announced a licensing deal that allows it to develop and publish new games in the series, as well as redistribute Flight Simulator X.
With the new licensing deal, Dovetail Games will publish Microsoft Flight Simulator X to Steam for the first time. The 2006 game will be released as Microsoft Flight Simulator X: Steam Edition in late 2014, packaging together the Deluxe Edition and Acceleration Expansion Pack into the one product.
The company is also "investigating new concepts [...] and is expecting to bring a release to market in 2015". With Dovetail Games' experience in creating popular simulators such as Train Simulator, any future title will almost certainly be a return to the detailed simulator roots of Flight Simulator, rather than a more game-like experience like we got in Microsoft Flight.
Kevin Perry, Executive Producer at Microsoft, said that "when it comes to licensing our simulation engine, Dovetail Games is the obvious choice for us to work with. We respect their approach in terms of delivering premium quality simulation games and look forward to seeing their vision of the next chapter in flight simulations unfold".