Take to the skies with Microsoft's next installment in the Flight Simulator series

Humza

TechSpot Staff
Staff member

Hardcore fans of the flight sim genre remember Microsoft's Flight Simulator from the early 1980s all the way to its tenth and last installment titled the FSX: Steam Edition that launched 5 years ago on Valve's store. The series is returning next year with visuals looking more lifelike than ever before.

Realistic and hyper-detailed cockpits will see many players become avionics experts pointing out and discovering switches, knobs, gauges and other equipment on their aircraft, which will roam the skies in challenging weather above gorgeous scenery, all made with the help of satellite data and Microsoft's own Azure AI technology.

"From light planes to wide-body jets, fly highly detailed and stunning aircraft in an incredibly realistic world. Create your flight plan and fly anywhere on the planet. Enjoy flying day or night and face realistic, challenging weather conditions."

The series has always remained an exclusive on the PC but this time Microsoft is also planning a couch experience for those with an Xbox One console. Release dates for either version remain unknown but they're expected to be out some time in 2020. Being a first-party title from Xbox Game Studios, the game will also be releasing via the Xbox Game Pass.

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In the early 2000's, I had JANES USAF, Falcon 4.0, F:16 Multirole Fighter, F22 Lightning 3...

Now...despite the computers being ridiculously more powerful than ever, there's no quality military flight sims - or even Space combat sims to put my overpowered rig to the test.

The first PC I built was a Pentium III 450Mhz with a Voodoo 3 3000 and 96MB of RAM intent on being able to run Babylon 5 Space Combat Simulator and I never got it.

Now there's virtually no timed releases of combat sims.

I fly Cessna Skyhawks in real life. It's boring.
If I wanted that type of sim I'd get Saitek Pro flight equipment.
 
How is this possible? I thought Lockheed Martin bought the intellectual property rights and code for MSFS years ago & turned it into Prepar3D.
 

Hussar

TS Rookie
In the early 2000's, I had JANES USAF, Falcon 4.0, F:16 Multirole Fighter, F22 Lightning 3...

Now...despite the computers being ridiculously more powerful than ever, there's no quality military flight sims - or even Space combat sims to put my overpowered rig to the test.

The first PC I built was a Pentium III 450Mhz with a Voodoo 3 3000 and 96MB of RAM intent on being able to run Babylon 5 Space Combat Simulator and I never got it.

Now there's virtually no timed releases of combat sims.

I fly Cessna Skyhawks in real life. It's boring.
If I wanted that type of sim I'd get Saitek Pro flight equipment.
Have you looked at Digital Combat Simulator? The planes are meticulously detailed & modeled, each with a huge flight manual.
 

Vulcanproject

TS Evangelist
Let's hope it runs considerably better than FSX which was terrible. Legendarily terrible. If anything the old 'can it run Crysis' meme was originally 'can it run FSX?'

The answer to the first one is now yes, the answer to the FSX question is still no.....
 

Markoni35

TS Addict
Just one question:
1. Is this (finally) the 64-bit version?

And the answer is probably: "No, it's still 32-bit and it can't use more than 4 GB of RAM, even if you have 32 GB installed". Hopefully it can at least use multiple cores.
 

Bp968

TS Booster
In the early 2000's, I had JANES USAF, Falcon 4.0, F:16 Multirole Fighter, F22 Lightning 3...

Now...despite the computers being ridiculously more powerful than ever, there's no quality military flight sims - or even Space combat sims to put my overpowered rig to the test.

The first PC I built was a Pentium III 450Mhz with a Voodoo 3 3000 and 96MB of RAM intent on being able to run Babylon 5 Space Combat Simulator and I never got it.

Now there's virtually no timed releases of combat sims.

I fly Cessna Skyhawks in real life. It's boring.
If I wanted that type of sim I'd get Saitek Pro flight equipment.
Elite Dangerous with flight assistance turned off is pretty epic. Ive heard good things about star citizen, though who knows if or when that will ever happen.
 

Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
Good to see them putting this old classic back in service! My only recommendation is that they build a module that lets you add weapons and some air to air, air to ground shoot 'em up features ..... Air Force One with mini-guns and rockets would be a nice touch!
 
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fktech

TS Maniac
In the early 2000's, I had JANES USAF, Falcon 4.0, F:16 Multirole Fighter, F22 Lightning 3...

Now...despite the computers being ridiculously more powerful than ever, there's no quality military flight sims - or even Space combat sims to put my overpowered rig to the test.

The first PC I built was a Pentium III 450Mhz with a Voodoo 3 3000 and 96MB of RAM intent on being able to run Babylon 5 Space Combat Simulator and I never got it.

Now there's virtually no timed releases of combat sims.

I fly Cessna Skyhawks in real life. It's boring.
If I wanted that type of sim I'd get Saitek Pro flight equipment.
Nothing compares to flying a real US Navy fighter jet from a US Navy aircraft carrier, especially at night...
 

Karl Hungus

TS Rookie
In the early 2000's, I had JANES USAF, Falcon 4.0, F:16 Multirole Fighter, F22 Lightning 3...

Now...despite the computers being ridiculously more powerful than ever, there's no quality military flight sims - or even Space combat sims to put my overpowered rig to the test.

The first PC I built was a Pentium III 450Mhz with a Voodoo 3 3000 and 96MB of RAM intent on being able to run Babylon 5 Space Combat Simulator and I never got it.

Now there's virtually no timed releases of combat sims.

I fly Cessna Skyhawks in real life. It's boring.
If I wanted that type of sim I'd get Saitek Pro flight equipment.
If you're a military sim fan, I can't believe you haven't tried DCS? I'm not sure what your 'overpowered rig' is, but I guarantee you it can't handle DCS at 4K. I needed to get a GTX 1070 just to get it smooth in 1080p.
 
If you're a military sim fan, I can't believe you haven't tried DCS? I'm not sure what your 'overpowered rig' is, but I guarantee you it can't handle DCS at 4K. I needed to get a GTX 1070 just to get it smooth in 1080p.
2080Ti + i9ex + 32GB DDR4 + SSD storage.

If DCS doesn't conform to that, then it must be poorly optimized.
 

Karl Hungus

TS Rookie
2080Ti + i9ex + 32GB DDR4 + SSD storage.

If DCS doesn't conform to that, then it must be poorly optimized.
Well the 32GB RAM won't help you in any game, and the i9 is also overkill for games (see numerous benchmarks...the latest on Rock Paper Shotgun), but the vid card would be able to drive the game at high settings for sure. An SSD also helps in DCS. As I said though, if you're really a flight sim fan, how could you not have tried DCS?! It's free and blows away anything else you'll play as far as fidelity, flight models and graphics go.