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Microsoft Flight Simulator [PC]. Coming to Xbox Series X/S July 27th 2021

Romier S

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  • 1 year later...

Time to bring further attention to the sheer absurdity of the detail in this game. Not just the graphics, but the physics, the weather, the audio, real time air traffic....etc. It's extraordinary.




That preview video (from a certified flight instructor) is well worth the watch.


It's out on August 18th for PC (advertised as a beta) and the base version will be on Gamepass. There's no exact timeframe on when to expect the console version. I'm so interested to see how this will translate to the SeriesX.


The PC recommended and ideal specs are actually very reasonable since so much is being dynamically streamed over the cloud, so even with SeriesX the bottleneck will really only be the strength and speed of your internet connection and the RAM (but the custom SSD architecture may compensate somewhat. We'll see):






I'm interested if it will actually come out for XB1. It's developed by a third party, so doesn't necessarily fall into the MS backward compatibility pledge.




Microsoft Flight Simulator Standard Edition ($59.99 USD): includes 20 highly detailed planes with unique flight models and 30 hand-crafted airports. The Standard Edition will be available with Xbox Game Pass for PC (Beta).


Deluxe Edition ($89.99 USD): includes everything from Microsoft Flight Simulator’s standard edition plus 5 additional highly accurate planes with unique flight models and 5 additional handcrafted international airports.


Premium Deluxe Edition ($119.99 USD): includes everything from Microsoft Flight Simulator Standard Edition plus 10 additional highly accurate planes with unique flight models and 10 additional handcrafted international airports.

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I can’t see it not coming to the base Xbox One, actually. Looking at the minimum PC specs, they’re the same memory and less CPU/GPU power than a One, and way less than something like Control, which also has an Xbox release. 

I can only imagine we don’t have an Xbox date yet because they want to reveal it on Thursday. 

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I'm curious to see how this can adapt to an Xbox pad. I hope they come up with a way to make it work as I love the idea of just kicking back in the comfort of the living room and hopping in the Cessna for a leisurely flight. I've been up front in a Cessna and they're not massively complicated, so would think the smaller planes would translate ok. Still, the value of an Xbox compatible HOTAS is doubled thanks to this and Elite (now if only EA would add support to Squadrons).

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I imagine there will be a fair bit of “hold LB as a shift modifier” or similar, but don’t forget that both current consoles can take regular Windows keyboards if they want to give an option for eleventy billion buttons. 

For my part, I’m most looking forward to flying the Welsh valleys, trying to keep below hilltop without face planting in a tree. 


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Great fan edited trailer:



I was thinking I would actually be perfectly OK with a dummies mode on console that mapped only the most basic essential controls to the joypad and left everything else automated. It's surely in part driven by the miserable reality that few are really able to travel right now that just makes me want to be able to turn to this for a chill out session, fly around and take in the sights without any of the actual anxiety of having to keep an eye on instruments...etc. 

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The game will launch on Steam on August 18th.


And in bigger news.... VR support is a go!



Finally, this feature deserves a drum roll... yes, MSFS will support virtual reality headsets. What's more, the VR toggle will be entirely free, with no additional purchase required.


We're surprised to see VR support announced ahead of other possible features, particularly Xbox console support, given that MSFS's non-VR version is already so demanding on CPUs and GPUs. (Which I'll get to in a bit.) For now, Asobo has put the game's VR version into a somewhat nebulous "fall 2020" release window, and the news does come with one catch: at launch, this mode will only work with the upcoming HP Reverb G2 system.


When pressed, Neumann and the rest of the MSFS team declined to specify exactly what about their VR implementation might require a limit to a single PC-VR system, especially since every headset on the market relies on OpenVR calls for axis orientation. (Indeed, this is exactly why non-Oculus headsets can be tricked into loading Oculus-exclusive software.) The Reverb G2 also happens to borrow the engineering and design of the Valve Index's lens array. Thus, we're hopeful that the game's VR mode removes these device-limiting flags and supports other headsets shortly after its launch.


The team also wasn't ready to clarify how hand-tracked controllers might work within the game's VR version. "It's an iterative process," Asobo CCO David Dedeine said. "We're trying to find something universal, that will work no matter what device you're using. We have interesting prototypes using advanced controls, I will say. There are exciting things happening. I am already amazed at what the team has made, in order to improve interactions with the cockpit in VR. It's different than interacting with a mouse. What we've already experienced is brilliant and will inform the current version of the game."


If you've seen the game's footage thus far, you may wonder how its detailed visuals and massive vistas will translate to the demands of VR—as in, two high-resolution displays (one for each eye) running at a 90Hz refresh rate. Asobo insists that the VR mode should target something close to the game's "medium" graphics preset, which, in my experience, is quite high-res: sufficiently fluffy clouds, relatively dense landscapes. The team says this graphical fidelity boils down to things like efficient CPU rendering ("the way you compute the right eye, then move much of that to the left eye") and expertise with the low-powered Hololens headset. "Hololens is a mobility device, and [our projects for that] forced us to ultimate optimization," Dedeine said. "So our team is plug-and-play on this subject."






Some new videos:




Very good 40 min gameplay video of a flight, and look at the UI...etc.




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Weird that the initial VR support (which very much feels like they're making their own beta public in order to show willing, rather than really wanted to release it this quick) is limited to such a specific model, rather than just WMR headsets generally. I've got the older HP WMR set, so of course I hope this will be the next expansion even if I'm sure supporting Valve or Oculus would be more mainstream.

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Hell, there's no interaction with the water at all.  It's like its a flat non-moving surface, ie a runway.  With the level of detail in this game I feel they will fix it.  I mean someone on the team has to have seen that, and the more that people play it will certainly be pointed out.  But that's got to be a whole other physics system for the game.  

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  • Angry the Clown changed the title to Microsoft Flight Simulator [PC]. Coming to Xbox Series X/S July 27th 2021

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