Today third-party developers had a lot of interesting news to share about upcoming aircraft and scenery for Microsoft Flight Simulator.
First of all, We hear from Aerosoft, which released the first screenshots of its upcoming CRJ 1000, featuring the AirFrance HOP! livery. More liveries will include Binter Canarias, Garuda Indonesia, Iberia, and more.
It’ll come alongside the CRJ 900 as a further add-on to the excellent CRJ 550/700 package. Recently, we heard that Aerosoft hopes to release it this month and today it was confirmed that development is “fully on schedule.”
Next, still from Aerosoft, is an update on the de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter, which is also confirmed to come for Xbox.
We learn about the pricing, which will be in the $25-29 range, and the features.
“So, after a very busy period, it is now the time of football and warm summer evenings. That means things for us slow down a bit (you have no idea how much these things affect our sales, give us a rainy, windy. cold long weekend and we make a lot of money), I got a glass of wine, it is 19:30, Wales is winning from Turkey and I got little else to do. So let me explain what this Twin Otter project is intended to be.
First of all, the aircraft that we are doing for MSFS fall into price ranges. 50 and 25 euro/dollars, That does not mean we’ll not do a 30 euro/dollar one or a 70 dollar/euro one, but they are two different levels. The CRJ, Airbusses, etc will all be in the 50 euro/dollar range. They are pretty complex, have 100+ pages of manuals, and are thus for a limited audience. No matter how it seems, in the 30 years (yes party this year) we have been doing this we have learned that complex aircraft get a lot of attention, less complex aircraft get a lot of sales. Our Twin Otters have been selling very well for over 10 years. They are the products we make our money on over the long run. At a certain moment, we think a 100 euro/dollar aircraft for MSFS will be viable but we simply are not at that point right now.
The Twin Otter is in the 25 euro/dollar class. (might be 29, we’ll see) That is a decision we took after a lot of discussion. See it is a pretty complete project. You get 3 base models and many variants, like normal wheels, tundra wheels, floats, amphibian, and ski, many of those in cargo and pax versions. in and many liveries. Try to find ANY MSFS add-on that offers a selection like that. It is also most likely the most modern model when it releases. As the Xbox is a platform we want to use we had to use the very latest technology. While we are not yet released I am going out on limb here and say that when we release it will be the most advanced modeling available. Big words and feel free to tell me if I am wrong when we release. I think it looks kick-ass.
In essence, the Twin Otter was designed to go anywhere. And we used that as the basic idea for the project. If there are a few hundreds of meters of more or less flat surface you can land. Water or land, tarmac or mud, snow or water. We got the Twotter that will land there. It is the ideal aircraft to explore the fantastic world that Asobo created. In a few days, I will post a series of images of all models
Moving on to flight models and engines. At this very moment a bit of an open issue, but Alexander, who handles that, will refuse to release a file to me that he is not happy with. And believe me, he is critical. What we are aiming for is beyond what FSX or P3D could offer. Our friends at Asobo are assisting. It is hard to explain how important this is. In P3D this was possible, but only if you move the engine and flight model OUTSIDE the sim. And then, you are not talking about a 250 euro/dollar product.
What’s left? Ahhh gauges and displays. Here we made some very strong choices. The ‘steam’ gauges are rather special. They are really accurate to match the more advanced engine model. Asobo offered us new interfaces and these are really something we have not seen before. For the navigation instruments, we have decided to use the default systems of MSFS. This decision was done after a lot of discussion. Making our own would move the project into the 50 euro/dollar range and would make it MUCH harder to be able to use the Twin Otter on Xbox (more on that below). But not only that, the default gauges are simply not bad and get better every month.
We realized the people who expected a hardcore Twin Otter will now have steam coming out of every orifice, but that is not correct. It is pretty hardcore. In modeling, flight model, sounds, effects, instruments, manuals, models, variations, and liveries we dare you to find anything that competes in that price level. And keep in mind we did a Twin Otter Extended before, so while we go for a low price, loads of sales model first, who knows when we see the option for a PC-only version that offers more depth at a higher price level.
On Xbox. We know most add-on developers simply do not see this as an important market (a bit because it is so hard to buy one), but we disagree. We do not think a super high-end (100 euro/dollar) add-on will ever do well on Xbox. But a Twin Otter that is designed to be used with an Xbox controller that lets you explore the world…. yeah that will work. Put the sim on your TV and it becomes a surprisingly social game. I have done it with family, we tried to find all of their houses, places they went on vacation, the place they were born. Three hours of some of the best flight simming I ever did. And challenging as weather got worse and worse. I had to work real hard on navigation. The Twotter will be perfect for flights like that. You got some speed, can fly slow and low, and can land almost everywhere.”
We also get a few airport announcements. Pyreegue announced Edinburgh Airport (EGPH) in Scotland. It’ll be “A completely new feature rich airport with a fully modeled interior, new turnhouse apron and much more, stay tuned for updates!”
You can see the first images below.
Next is Gaffer Simulations, that announced O.R. Tambo International Airport in South Africa (FAOR).
We also stay in Africa with Flight Sim Development Group, which revealed that a Microsoft Flight Simulator version of its Hurghada International Airport (HEGN) is in development. No images were provided, for now.
We also get a release, and it’s the Embraer 170/175 Series by Virtualcol.
It can be purchased on SimMarket for approximately $25 plus applicable VAT. Below you can take a good look at the dedicated tutorials and evaluate the addon’s quality. I’ll go out on a limb and advise you to evaluate it very carefully before you purchase.
Recently, we published our massive interview with head of Microsoft Flight Simulator Jorg Neumann, who provided a lot of new info about the present and future of the sim.
If you’d like to read more about Microsoft Flight Simulator add-ons, you can enjoy our recent reviews of Chongqiung, Manila Airport, Santiago Airport, the Frankfurt City Pack, Key West Airport, the Okavango Delta, Bali Airport, London Oxford Airport, Berlin Brandenburg Airport, the CRJ 550/700, the PA-28R Arrow III, Kristiansand Airport, Macau City & Airport, Bonaire Flamingo Airport, Milano Linate Airport, the Singapore City Pack, Tokyo Narita Airport, Yao Airport, the F-15 Eagle, the Paris City Pack, Greater Moncton Airport, Tweed New Haven Airport, Santorini Airport, Sydney Airport, Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, Reggio Calabria Airport, Bastia Poretta Airport, Munich Airport, Paris Orly Airport, Newcastle International Airport, Sankt Johann Airfield, Dublin International Airport, and Seoul City Wow. We also have a beta preview of Singapore Changi airport.
If you want to learn more about the game itself, you can read our review that will tell you everything you need to know about Asobo Studio’s game.
Microsoft Flight Simulator is already available for Windows 10 and Steam and will release on July 27, 2021 for Xbox Series X ad Series S.