Today, Microsoft and Asobo Studio hosted a live stream showcasing upcoming plans for Microsoft Flight Simulator.
As usual, we hear from Microsoft Flight Simulator chief Jorg Neumann, Asobo CEO Sebastian Wlock, and executive producer Martial Bossard.
Neumann started off by mentioning that the simulator continues to break engagement records and now has almost twice as many people swimming as it did in mid-2021.
We get a detailed roadmap for 2022 including up to 17 global updates, up to 7 Local Legend planes, up to 5 Famous Flyer planes and major releases including Top Gun: Maverick, Helicopters , gliders and two “surprises”.
Next we see the first trailer for Global Update 8, focusing on Australia, which will feature four airports, including Longreach (YLRE), Mount Beauty (YMBT), Shellharbour (YSHL), and Paraburdoo (YPBO).
Many photogrammetry cities will also be added including Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth, Hobart, Cairns, Darwin, Townsville, Bunbury and Mackay. Interestingly, a new team has been started at Microsoft to create more cities that will come in the future.
A new trailer and images also feature the second Local Legend aircraft, the “Southern Cross” Fokker F.VIIb piloted by Charles Kingsford Smith on the first transpacific flight to Australia from the continental United States.
Six variants will be included for the aircraft, with 11-12 liveries (still depending on licensing). These will include the Southern Cross itself (one version with the original cockpit and one with modern avionics), the Josephine Ford ski version, Friendship with floats, the single-engine transport variant and the three-engine transport variant with a variety of liveries.
The Australian World Update and the Fokker will arrive on January 31.
The first Famous Flier aircraft may no longer be the Antonov An-2 as the team is still working with Antonov to acquire the license, even though the aircraft is already complete.
The Beechcraft Model 17 Staggerwing will likely be delivered first, and it will be developed by Carenado. You can see some screenshots below.
Next we learn that World Update 9 will be Iberia (Spain and Portugal), featuring new 2m resolution digital elevation maps for Spain, six new cities, 99 points of interest, four airports, new assignments, and more. He will come in March.
With him we will have the next local legend, the Dornier Do J Wal, who flew from Spain to South America in 1926.
Speaking of basic simulation improvements, we see new engine starts for propeller planes and accurate simulation of propeller movement with precision, including propeller drag, feathering, beta range. Airflows around the aircraft and its surfaces will also be accurately simulated from the Sim 9 update, including native simulation of propeller wash, deep stalls, shading, wake turbulence, wingtip vortices, etc.
Some of these effects will start arriving with Sim Update 8 and will also be available for aircraft developers, and others with Sim Update 9. A detailed video about it will be released on February 7th.
We then get a snapshot of the updated comments.
The developers also explained that the dev team is working on improving cloud rendering and prototyping Nvidia DLSS, which brings very positive results. DLSS may arrive as early as sim 10 update but could come later.
A beta of Sim Update 8 will launch after World Update 7. Sim Update 9 will focus on stability.
About the AI traffic, the devs noticed that they were using too much legacy code from Flight Simulator X. A bunch of fixes will come with the sim 8 update, and then the system will basically reboot.
The ATR 72/42 is still in development but it will be an “expert level aircraft” and it will take time to reach that level. Quality on this is more important than time.
Recently we published our latest interview with Microsoft Flight Simulator lead Jorg Neumann and heard more about Microsoft’s plans for the next few months, including World Update Australia.
If you want to know more about Microsoft Flight Simulator add-ons, you can enjoy our recent reviews on 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, Krakow Airport, Fukuoka City and Airport, Fort Lauderdale Airport, Chongqing City and Airport, Manila Airport, Santiago Airport, Frankfurt City Pack, Key West Airport, Okavango Delta, Bali Airport, London Oxford Airport, Berlin Brandenburg Airport , CRJ 550/700, PA-28R Arrow III, Kristiansand Airport, Macau City & Airport, Bonaire Flamingo Airport, Milano Linate Airport, Singapore City Pack, Tokyo Narita Airport, Yao Airport, F-15 Eagle , the Paris City Pack, Greater Moncton Airport, Tweed New Haven Airport, Santorini Airport, Sydney Airport, Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, Reggio Cala Bria 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 know more about the game itself, you can read our review which will tell you everything you need to know about the game from Asobo Studio.
Microsoft Flight Simulator is already available for Windows 10 and Steam, and Xbox Series X|S.