Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024 announced, but will they continue the 10-year support...


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In a nutshell: Microsoft has announced a new version of Flight Simulator as a follow-up to its widely popular 2020 release. Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024, developed by Asobo Studio, is expected to include additional flying activities, such as hot air balloons, aerial firefighting, and more. Flight Sim 2024 launches on Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass, Xbox Cloud Gaming, Windows 10/11, and Steam next year.

Microsoft claims Flight Simulator 2024 will be "the most sophisticated, immersive, and awe-inspiring flight simulator of all time," utilizing the latest simulation, cloud, and machine learning technologies. It will be a standalone sequel but supports all currently-available aircraft and airports from Flight Sim 2020. Most add-ons from the 2020 game will also function in Flight Sim 2024, barring "very few exceptions."

Flight Simulator 2024 will include a stunning range of careers. Players will find even more activities and types of flying to master in the latest edition. New MSFS 2024 careers and activities include:

  • Aerial Firefighting
  • Search and Rescue
  • Helicopter Cargo Transport
  • Air Ambulance
  • Agricultural Aviation
  • Mountain Rescue
  • Skydive Aviation
  • Aerial Construction
  • Industrial Cargo Transport
  • Remote Cargo Ops
  • VIP Charter Service
  • Air Racing
  • Glider Pilot
  • Scientific Research
  • Experimental Flights
  • Low Altitude Training
  • Executive Transport Service
  • Airship Tours
  • Hot Air Balloon Trips

It isn't immediately clear whether Asobo has fleshed out all these "careers" with enough gameplay options. For example, some will inherently have more to offer, like aerial firefighting or search and rescue. Conversely, hot-air balloon trips seem relatively limited by nature.

Those worried that Microsoft might abandon MSFS 2020 once the follow-up launches should be happy to hear it will continue to support 2020 after Flight Sim 2024 launches. The older title will continue receiving Aircraft and Avionics, Core Sim, City, and World Updates.

The announcement of Flight Sim 2024 came as a bit of a surprise, as Microsoft had announced plans to support the current version for up to a decade after its release. As part of those plans, the company has many new features and add-ons in the pipeline for the 2020 game, including a 'Dune' expansion that will be rolled out on November 3 alongside the release of Dune: Part 2.

That said, it will be interesting to see whether Microsoft will stick to its 10-year plan for Flight Sim 2020 following Flight Sim 2024's release.

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The only feature I want in MSFS2024 is a PC simulator that isn’t hog-tied to the computing limitations of Xbox consoles. So unless there are 2 separate stand-alone versions developed specifically for each platform, I don’t care about this and that “flying activities”. I want the PC version to use all of my 13900 cores and 24Gb on my 4090 (or 5090 by then).
MSFS 2020 is incredible. These new additions look really cool, though probably are going to grow tiresome fairly quickly depending on how they implement them as "challenges." Why not just add these to the 2020 title as a purchasable add-on? It would take some serious convincing involving clearly outlined technical upgrades for me to buy this 2024 title.