Today third-party developers had plenty of interesting news to share about Microsoft Flight Simulator add-ons.
With the huge F-15 update done, work now moves on to the new project: the AV-8B Harrier II. This will contain the AV-8B and GR5 Harriers, which will have identical cockpits with the exception of the differing ejection seats. I would have included the earlier GR3 and Sea Harrier variants but the differences between the types are just too great – they’d each require entirely different internal and external models which is too much to do in one project and keep the price sensible.
The main thing about the Harrier is how hard it was to fly in real life. Only the best pilots were / are streamed to Harriers, and many don’t make the grade and are “chopped” from the conversion units. There are other S/VTOL aircraft in MSFS, but they often make use of the sim’s “Slew” function to “hover”, which removes all aerodynamic and meteorological influences. Basically, you’re not flying when using that method. The DC Designs Harrier *is* flying when hovering in MSFS and therefore affected by the wind, weather and all aerodynamic factors, making it a much harder airplane to control, just like real life.
Unusually for me, I am working on the Harrier alongside another major project. The F4 Phantoms are also well underway and will be revealed in more detail in a few weeks’ time. For those of you wondering, the Phantoms will be a multi-variant package that will share the same cockpit. This is because extra variants are so much easier to add based on the F4-J. The confirmed variants I would like to include are the F-4J, F-4E, FGR2 and the F4-K ( Royal Navy ). Each will have external differences centred around the nose shape and tail fin, along with wider aft fuselage and different exhausts for the Rolls Royce Spey engines in the British FGR2 variant. This is essentially how things were done in real life.
We start with Homasim which released Tehran Mehrabad International Airport (OIII) in Iran. It’s the same developer which released the excellent Tehran Imam Khomeini Airport.
It’s available on Aerosoft’s store for $21.95 including applicable VAT.
- The most detailed scenery of OIII on any Flight Simulator platform to date
- High-quality models of all major buildings as well as key surrounding buildings
- Included key monuments including Azadi Square, Milad Tower and Azadi Sport Complex
- 4k and 2k textures and PBR materials for quality and performance
- Static and non-static aircraft versions included
Next, Orbx released its Landmarks Melbourne City pack in Australia.
You can purchase it on Orbx Central for $12.60.
- More than 200 custom buildings and structures.
- Detailed representation of the Port of Melbourne and adjacent industrial areas.
- Helipads on several rooftops, as well as on floating platforms along the Yarra River.
- Animated Hot Air Balloons north of the CBD, visible on mornings with clear weather.
- Animated CBD Metro trains on the viaduct between Flinders and Southern Cross stations.
- Animated racehorses on Moonee Valley and Flemington racecourse.
- Many enhancements to the city and surrounding areas: improved vegetation and building placements, marinas, tall powerline towers, etc.
- Precise placement of our custom landmarks within the simulator’s terrain and the city’s photogrammetry coverage.
- Custom night lighting based on real-world photography.
- Fully compatible with World Update 7 Australia and meant to be used with it.
Last, but certainly not least, Northern Sky Studio released Lanai Airport (PHNY) in Hawaii, United States.
It can be purchased on Orbx Central for $11.77.
- The most detailed replica of airport buildings and vehicles
- Custom surroundings
- All materials created for full PBR
- Shading and occlusion (texture baking) effects on all airport buildings
- High-resolution building textures
- Use of native, highly efficient gITF models
- Custom orthophoto for the airport and surrounding areas
If you’d like to read more about Microsoft Flight Simulator add-ons, you can enjoy our recent reviews of Anchorage International Airport, 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 recently published a review of the Thrustmaster TCA Yoke Pack Boeing Edition, which is a great controller for Microsoft Flight Simulator.
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.