Today Microsoft hosted a Q&A livestream with the developers of Microsoft Flight Simulator, offering a lot of details about future plans.
We hear from head of Microsoft Flight Sim Jorg Neuman, Asobo CEO Sebastian Wlock, and executive producer Martial Bossard.
They mentioned that the upcoming update dedicated to the UK and Ireland may come next week, but the day isn’t determined yet.
The cities that will get a photogrammetry update are London, Birmingham Oxford, Cambridge, and Bristol. Below you can check out part of the trailer that was showcased during the livestream.
The next world update coming at the end of March will feature France, Belgium, Luxemburg, and the Netherlands.
The Sim Update 3 coming in February will focus on the Garmin autopilot systems, updates to the weather panel, the ability to tweak your aircraft, and probably visual effects like contrails. If said visual effects aren’t ready for Sim Update 3, they will come for sure in Sim Update 4.
Below you can check out a summary of more of the news shared and the latest Feedback Snapshot (including a specific one for VR).
- The developers are working on improving several elements of the flight model including adverse yaw, turboprop systems, p-factor, and slipstream.
- Wake turbulence will be implemented in the future, likely after the turboprop systems.
- Improvements to ground effect will come soon.
- A way to tweak icing is also in the pipeline.
- The collaboration with the FlyByWire team on the A32NX is proceeding well, and the team is also talking with SaltySimulation and Working Title for the 747 and the Citation CJ4. A “free” section of the store is being prototyped and these community add-ons will be included in the future.
- A replay future with record and play functionality is being worked on. A release date cannot be announced yet.
- Multiple monitor support is still in the pipeline.
- The Scenery Gateway system to allow users to help improve the airport is coming and it’s just a matter of time.
- DirectX 12 support is a big focus for the developers and optimization is being done for performance and memory management. A lot of progress has been made on memory (including GPU memory) and performance optimizations in the past six months and this will help with both the Xbox Series X|S version and the PC version. It will also enable things like ray tracing for lighting, reflections, and water down the line.
- The goal is to bring to Xbox the same core experience as on PC, while also improving performance on PC.
- The Xbox port allowed the developers to rethink ways to interact with the cockpit. VR support on PC will also benefit from those.
- Weather is considered as a core functionality of the simulator, so the developers are committed to getting it fully right in the base sim.
- The Bing team is working on new techniques that will improve the appearance of mountains.
- Another Feedback Snapshot dedicated to accessibility is coming.
- The developers are going to improve trees and a new way to optimize them has been found that will allow the simulator to display more.
- AI traffic will be updated in the next Sim Update with some systems that will “guess” missing data from FlightAware, resulting in those aircraft appearing in the simulator instead of being skipped.
- Work is being done on AI aircraft including models and liveries. Some of that will come with the France-focused World Update. Unfortunately, some airlines are dragging their feet about licensing liveries so those may take longer.
- The next sim update will also bring improvements to AI behavior.
- The issue that causes spikes in the terrain has been found and will be fixed in the UK update alongside a further improvement to water masks.
- The infamous “10 degrees bug” has been fixed and the fix will be included in Sim Update 3.
- Aerosoft’s Bombardier CRJ add-on is in the final phase of tuning with work being done on the engine and more specifically on fuel consumption.
- The UK update will bring improvements to the SDK (including flight model and flaps) requested by third-party developers.
- There are things being done with weather coming that fans will appreciate.
Incidentally, if you’re interested in more Microsoft Flight Simulator add-ons, you can enjoy our recent reviews of the F-15 Eagle, the Landmarks 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 in summer 2021 for Xbox Series X ad Series S.
A few weeks ago, we learned that over two million players have installed Microsoft Flight Simulator so far on their PCs.