Microsoft Flight Simulator X has been around in various stages of development since 1982. The Gold Edition was the last title to be released by Microsoft in 2008.
End of an Era?
- 1 Microsoft Flight Simulator X – An Overview
Quote: “This difficult decision was made to align Microsoft’s resources with our strategic priorities. Microsoft Flight Simulator X will remain available at retail stores and Web retailers. The Flight Sim community will continue to learn from and encourage one another, and we remain committed to the Microsoft Flight Simulator X franchise for the long term.”
Microsoft Flight Simulator X – An Overview
Microsoft Flight Simulator X allows one to fly anywhere in the world by flying an aircraft of your choice. Anything from an AirCreation Ultralight or perhaps the other end of the spectrum, a Boeing 747-400 commercial airliner, a helicopter or a multitude of aircraft options in between. The aircraft are excellent, and the graphics for aircraft externally and internally are excellent. The same applies for the scenery; the high-resolution textures render beautiful landscapes and skies. Waves on the ocean are now visible, accurate star maps and 3-D animals,
It was devasting news for all flight-sim enthusiasts at the time. It is amazing to stop and consider all of the events that have occurred since and reflect upon the fact that the title has been reincarnated and continues to live on, albeit in a couple of different forms.
FSx in Final Release Form
To truly appreciate FSX, one needs to revisit the original version (Version 1.0) so that a full appreciation of the final product.
MSFS Version 1.0
Given that a picture is worth a thousand words, there is the point on me elaborating on what is evident. MFS Version 1.0 was very simple indeed. Of course, one thing that one needs to know is that in the days of MFS Version 1.0, things were very different. Computing power was in its infancy, the internet comparatively speaking, also in early beginnings.
Flight Simulator first version ran on an Apple II computer in 1980. As you can see the in the screen shots, the graphics were black and white wireframes with tiny detail. The first IBM PC version was released in 1982 and was a definite improvement over the Apple version. The graphics for the Cessna it displayed was very coarse, and the runway presented the strip as minimalistic as it can get.
FSX Comes in Three Versions: Standard, Deluxe and Gold.
From the packaging: “The Sky Is Boundless; The World Is Alive. It’s As Real as It Gets.”
I want to talk about Microsoft Flight Simulator X in its default form. First, not all of us are old hands at flight-simming. In fact for anyone new, and it can be quite overwhelming. After talking about the basics, I shall go into more detail about the various versions and add-ons in general.
The autogen in Microsoft Flight Simulator X does an excellent job displaying ground features and vegetation in areas not modeled. The system will show scenery by where you fly in the world, and most major landmarks are in the landscape. Essential weather may be downloaded as you travel anywhere in the world.
It is this version of the Microsoft Flight Simulator X attention to detail that draws people into the simulation. Having the ability to go flying anywhere in the world where the scenery and weather are accurate to your location is a lot of fun.
One can fly as only or as complicated as you like, jump in and fly VFR (visual flight rules). You may work out a flight plan for IFR flight (Instrument Flight Rules) using the sim’s ATC (Air Traffic Control) vector your flight. With 24,000 airports around the world to choose from, chances are the local strip near where you live will be available which will then allow you to circle your house if you wish.
There is a range of missions and tutorials (about 30 missions in the standard version and about 50 in the Deluxe). For users at any level; again, it’s the user’s choice for depth of immersion, simple, or more complicated. The aircraft categories allow for choices of aircraft that suit any mood or whim. It’s all these various features built into the sim which make it fun. So there should not be any reason to become bored. The more one learns about flying; the more addictive the simulation will become.
AI (Artificial Intelligence)
You will never feel alone due to the software’s inclusion of AI (artificial intelligence). One will see other aircraft flying around you and if on the ground in an airport, they will be taxing around the airport as well. Further to this feature, you will also see cars, boats and other dynamic scenery, all adding to the simulator’s realism.
If you have in interest in learning how to fly, then FSX will aid you in learning about basic procedures and flying skills. No, it’s not a commercial training simulator (Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D may well turn out to be though), but for learning the basics, it’s excellent!
A point of contention for Microsoft Flight Simulator X and even previous versions are the frame rates and the stutters. Much less of a problem now with the current state of hardware, smooth flying still requires a high-end computer. It applies in particular if you want to turn up all the realism settings within the sim.
Allows you to fly with other people, nothing adds more to the realism of the sim than flying and talking to other people who are also flying also. They might be acting as (ATC) air traffic controllers. It means real interaction which as it is in the real world, you will at the time fly by instructions if you’re flying IFR (Instrument Flight Rules.) You will be required to follow vectors (numbers that dictate direction, height, and speed). In doing so, it will give you an insight about real-world flying. If you like you can join an online virtual airline, and fly assigned routes for them; all this is possible in FSX.
The Main Features: The Deluxe Edition
- 50 missions
- 24 planes.
- 45 cities
- 38 cities.
Aircraft: The Deluxe Edition
- Airbus A321 – Jetliner manufactured by Airbus
- Air Creation 582-SL Trike Ultralight
- AgustaWestland AW101- Military helicopter
- Beechcraft Baron 58- a leading civil twin engine
- Bell 206B JetRanger- Helicopter
- Boeing 737-800- One of the most common jetliners in service today
- Boeing 747-400- Well known as the “Queen of the Skys.”
- Boeing F/A-18 Hornet- A multi-role fighter jet.
- Bombardier CRJ-700- A business jet.
- Bombardier Learjet LJ-45- A famous business jet.
- Cessna 208-B Grand Caravan- From Cessna and first introduced in 1985.
- Cessna 172S Skyhawk SP- Very popular light aircraft often used as a trainer by flight schools.
- De Havilland DHC-2 Beaver floatplane- Often seen flying into remote locations.
- DG-808-S Competition Sailplane – A sailplane made of composites.
- Douglas DC-3- Very familiar and reliable aircraft.
- Extra EA-300-S- Designed for aerobatics.
- Grumman G-21-A Goose- For land and sea can land and take off on either.
- Maule Orion M-7-260-C Super Rocket- Renound for its ability to handle short take-offs and landings.
- Mooney M-20-M Bravo A very fast civil aircraft.
- Piper J-3C-65 Cub- Commonly used in World War II.
- Robinson R-22 Beta II- A very popular helicopter.
- Real World Weather/Static- real world weather from the Internet, which remains the same.
- Real World/Updates- real world weather pulled from the Internet and updated every 15 minutes.
- User Defined- allows you to create custom weather.
- In the Area called User Defined you can pick from the following options
- Clouds: thunderstorm clouds, stratus, cirrus, or cumulus
- Cloud coverage: broken or overcast, turbulence, icing, rain, snow, wind speed and altitude.
- Wind: altitude, gust speed, speed, turbulence, direction, sheer strength.
- Temperature: temperature and dew point.
- Visibility: Custom options
(n.d.). Retrieved March 14, 2016, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Flight_Simulator_X