Microsoft Flight Simulator is a true innovation in PC Gaming providing newcomers and enthusiasts a rich and vibrant world to explore…
Throughout the history of the PC, Microsoft’s Flight Simulator series has been a mainstay in software innovation and graphical achievement. Since the 1980’s every iteration of the popular program has been met with huge fanfare, pushing the boundaries software capabilities and utilising hardware of every generation to maximise visual impact.
Releasing in August 2020, the latest version of Microsoft Flight Simulator attempts to provide the most immersive, realistic ‘in game world’ ever created. Leveraging the power of Microsoft’s Bing satellite map data, Flight Simulator provides a 1:1 scale replica of the entire planet for you to explore however you like.
Microsoft Flight Simulator: Standard Edition is available to play on Xbox Game Pass for PC. With over a million people taking to the skies on the first few weeks of launch, players have been exploring the world in all sorts of aircraft.
For Sim fans looking for even more, Deluxe and Premium editions of the simulator are available with additional features through the XBOX app on PC.
Incredibly detailed satellite map data is used to produce stunning real world scenery, cities and airports for you to explore
Loaded with an ever expanding variety of aircraft for you to master, Flight Simulator includes a wide scope of planes to suit all ability levels and interests. From the mighty Boeing 747-8 ‘Jumbo Jet’ to the Cessna Citation CJ4 ‘private jet’, you can take to the skies easily in planes of all shapes and sizes.
The larger jets and passenger airliners have higher maximum altitudes which allow you to take in breath-taking scenery from above the clouds, climbing up through realistic cloud cover and cruising with a relaxing view of the horizon.
A comprehensive array of propeller driven planes are also available, some of them providing huge levels of maneuverability and control in the air. Pick a stunt plane and perform loops and tight turns through your local city or take a thrill ride through the Swiss Alps.
The real beauty of this game is the escapism on offer and the ability to fly anywhere you can think of. As a tool for exploring the world, there really isn’t anything more comprehensive than Microsoft Flight Simulator
Wide Variety of Controls
Flight Simulator will Scale with your skill level, set the game controls to ‘easy’ and use a Microsoft XBOX controller with your PC to get going quickly using intuitive controls that let you pilot your aircraft and take a relaxing flight somewhere. Playing on a controller also lets you precisely control the agile planes too, resulting in some really impressive twists and turns.
Keyboard & Mouse gamers can get into flight simulator quickly. Whilst the harder difficulty settings are not ideal for a KB&M control setup, the game is still very playable like this and will allow you to get started without any additional gaming peripherals.
Joystick and flight yoke controls are all supported by Flight Simulator and offer the most realistic and immersive experience in the simulator. With limitless options of customisation, a joystick will give you precision control in any situation.
Simulator veterans and real life pilots will appreciate the incredible level of granular detail in the sim that allow you to recreate the complexities of flying a real aircraft.
Take off from the Hudson River in New York City in an Icon A5 Amphibian aircraft. The scenery in large cities is impressively detailed for maximum immersion.
Real World Weather – Real World Air Traffic
Flight Simulator allows you complete control of the time and weather of your flight. You can decide to fly at any time of day and make adjustments to the time, date and weather circumstances whist in the air. This allows you to take in incredible sunrises or put yourself in the middle of a storm to test your flight skills. By default, the weather circumstances use realtime weather data so wherever you are flying in the world, the time of day and weather scenario will be presented as it is in that location. Many Flight Simulator users have been using this revolutionary feature to explore weather events like hurricanes and storms all over the planet.
In addition to complete control of the weather and time, Flight Simulator uses data from real life aircraft to populate airports and the skies with real life aircraft. If you see another plane cruising by on your flight, that plane will be on its flight path in real life too. There isn’t another simulator available with this level of detail and immersion.
Constant development on the title means that the world and presentation of Flight Simulator is always progressing. The developers have announced that Virtual Reality support is coming soon. Putting you in the cockpit of your favourite aircraft so that you can fly around landmarks and points of interest with ease.
System Suggestions & Resolutions
All of the ground breaking features that Flight Simulator offers means that in order to run the game at Ultra Settings, you will need a hefty Gaming System. Stormforce Gaming has a wide range of systems that will offer a Flight Simulator experience for most budgets. The simulator has been labelled as one of the most demanding PC Gaming titles in recent memory so your experience will vary depending on your resolution and the Stormforce Gaming system you use.
The game has a very scalable graphics engine and will work well on lower end hardware but you will be forced to drop your video quality settings to maintain smooth frame rates.
One thing to keep in mind is that Microsoft Flight Simulator is a fairly slow paced game. Usually we suggest that gamers aim for a system that will run a title at 60 frames per second or higher but after many hours of testing, we have found that 35 frames per second or higher in this title offers a very playable and smooth experience. If you can achieve higher than 35FPS on your system then your experience of the simulator will be even better.
- At 1080p, an RTX 2060 Super would be a baseline for Ultra settings. Lower tier video cards will still run the game but you will need to scale back graphics settings for a smooth experience.
- Higher resolutions like 1440p can be achieved with higher tier cards like NVIDIA RTX 2070 Super or the new NVIDIA RTX 3070 or AMD Radeon RX 6800 for a smooth experience on Ultra settings.
- 4k and ultrawide monitor users will require a card like the NVIDIA RTX 2080 Super. The new NVIDIA RTX 3080 or AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT would be the best option for the highest settings at large resolutions.
We recommend a system with at least an AMD Ryzen 5 or Intel i5 processor, 16GB of system memory and an SSD for optimal performance in this title too.
If you need a second opinion or more advice on the best system for you, please reach out to us for more information on how to optimise your Microsoft Flight Simulator experience – Contact Us Here