Today Microsoft and Asobo Studio hosted a livestream showcasing upcoming plans for Microsoft Flight Simulator.
As usual, we hear from head of Microsoft Flight Simulator Jorg Neumann, Asobo CEO Sebastian Wlock, and executive producer Martial Bossard.
We hear that Sim Updates may be slowed down slightly in order to increase stability and the ability to publicly beta test them for a longer time. This may also affect world updates.
The sim is getting an experimental option in Sim Update 10 called “Low Power Mode” to decrease CPU and GPU utilization (while sacrificing frame rate). It’ll be available in Developer Mode. Based on feedback, it may become a core option (in the standard menus) in Sim Update 11.
Microsoft is planning a “Marketplace 3.0” with new features in 2023, possibly later in the year.
We finally hear more from developer Hans Hartmann about the ATR. The project is on schedule but it’s “a little early” to talk about a release date. It should also come to the Xbox version.
The project will include the ATR 42-600, the ATR 72-600, and the ATR 72-600F freighter version.
The aircraft will be a high-fidelity one with a state-of-the-art exterior model. Everything is animated, including the doors. The new LED landing lights are also implemented.
The interior model has the same level of detail as the exterior and a full walkable cabin will be included, alongside the cargo area for the freighter version. Everything that opens or closes is animated and usable, including sun visors and armrests, and even the document door on the captain’s side.
An EFB (electronic flight bag) tablet will be implemented and all controls are available via LocalVars, which will help those who like to build cockpits for their simulators.
The aircraft will have a high-quality flight and engine model by Alexander Metzger (who worked alongside Hartmann on the highly-praised Flight1 ATR for Flight Simulator X). The engine modeled is the PW127M with realistic ITT behavior and fuel flow.
The systems are modeled up to the latest ATR standard (STD3), with a full checklist system, NAMS pressurization system, the Thales FMS 220 with 2 MCDUs, TAWS, and Weather Radar.
The latest flight dynamics, prop physics, and soft-body simulation will be included.
The aircraft is based on extensive documentation by ATR.
We then hear more general information, including the fact that Asobo is going to implement (or better, improve, since it’s already implemented but unnoticeable) camera shake at touchdown in sim update 10.
More features planned for sim update 10 are multi-screen support, DLSS support, improvement of the DirectX12 implementation, a new cloud logic that will improve resolution next to the ground, improved bush trips, better accessibility for the UI (including a screen reader), a keybind to remove nameplates on the fly, VFR map improvements, and an option to turn ghosting in multiplayer on or off. The implementation of these features depends on the results of beta testing, which will start pretty soon. The release of the update may actually come a few weeks later than expected in order to allow more extensive testing.
Wind gusts in live weather are also being tested and planned for Sim Update 10, alongside the first stage of the improvement for ground handling.
Performance degradation in long flights is still being investigated and the developers believe it may be caused by the VFR map. They’re also investigating whether this is impacted by third-party scenery.
Asobo is working on improving ATC vectoring alongside more layers of improvement of ATC in general.
If you’d like to read more about Microsoft Flight Simulator add-ons, you can enjoy our recent reviews of Fenix’s Airbus A320, West Virginia International Yeager Airport, Kansai International Airport, Toronto Pearson Airport, the Twin Otter, Auckland International Airport, Skiathos Airport, Athens International Airport, Bergamo Orio al Serio Airport, Amami Airport, Bristol Airport, Marrakech Menara Airport, Great Britain Central, Tehran Imam Khomeini Airport, Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport, Shanghai Pudong Airport, Kraków Airport, Fukuoka City & Airport, Fort Lauderdale Airport, Chongqing City & Airport, 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 which will tell you everything you need to know about Asobo Studio’s game.