Microsoft Flight Simulator Brings Helicopters and Gliders on November 11

Microsoft Flight Simulator is by far the most incredible experience a flying simulator has brought to the gaming industry and our screens, for that matter. It brings us unlimited replayability, depth, and added realism. But this time around, it’s also bringing us some well-needed additions like gliders and helicopters with the 40th Anniversary Update that’s set to release on November 11.

Microsoft Flight Simulator Comes Out With Its 40th Anniversary Update

The base version of Microsoft Flight Simulator presents you with the option to select 20 planes and take off from around 30 airports. While that doesn’t seem like a wide selection of airports or planes, the game gives you around 40,000 airports that are rendered using advanced technologies.

As for the level of detail in the airplanes, it’s something to really behold. If you take a look at the Cessna 172 Skywhawk, it’s absolutely perfect. You could go beyond to verify the attention to detail. Go ahead and print out a PDF of the Garmin Digital Instruments in the airplanes and you’ll know that they’re no different from the original. Everything checks out. The developers went far and beyond to integrate emulators for the actual software that runs them into Flight Simulator. 

The simulation becomes a whole lot more enjoyable if you have access to a dedicated flight controller. The go-to for this is the Thrustmaster Airbus A380 Flight Stick paired with a crisp 4K monitor with HDR, making the whole flight experience life-like and immersive.

Microsoft Flight Simulator Update
Aircraft flying above lush dense forests and sub-urban areas in Microsoft Flight Simulator | Xbox

While that’s all fine and dandy, it’s pretty disappointing that the selection of airplanes you get to fly around is limited to just 20 along with 30 airports. This is just present in the base 60-dollar edition of the game and it’s a decent amount of content for a flight sim. The planes featured range from highly agile stunt planes such as the Aviat Pitts Special S2S biplane, to wide-bodied and heavy aircrafts such as the Boeing 747-8.

Players could’ve bought the deluxe edition to get an added five airplanes and five more airports for a premium price of 90 dollars which is a bit too much. But there was another tier available during launch, allowing players to buy the 120-dollar Premium Deluxe Edition which added another five airplanes in addition to airports bringing the selection up to 30 different airliners and 40 different airports. Although the variety is excellent, it was disappointing to see that no military aircraft were previously added to the roster.

microsoft flight simulator
Hughes H4 Hercules landing in the sea | Xbox

With that said, Microsoft is gearing up to add helicopters and gliders to Microsoft Flight Simulator and the release date for this update is approaching pretty near. Players will be able to access around 12 new aircrafts, boosting the existing roster of aircrafts to around 42. But these aren’t all just normal-looking aircrafts. They consist of one of the most legendary and iconic aircrafts of the past century.

It also features one of the strangest aircrafts that history has ever seen. The 1947 Hughes H4 Hercules. Players will now get to take a look inside of the most iconic and beefed-up cargo vehicles that were designed nearly a century ago. Not many have gotten to see the insides of a Hughes H4 Hercules but Microsoft Flight Simulators will be blessed with this opportunity.

The plane was commissioned by the U.S. Air Force to be engineered and crafted by the Hughes Company. And they came out with a behemoth of a wooden airplane known as the Hughes H-4 Hercules. The plane had a wingspan of nearly 100 meters and is still on display at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum.

The aircraft could easily rest on top of the ocean’s surface and would be used for transatlantic flights for transporting goods, cargo, and troops during World War II. However, the aircraft was not completed in time to be extensively used in World War II.

To make the update a whole lot sweeter, Microsoft is also bringing players four new classic airports, around 10 airports for gliders, and 14 heliports. The mission selection will be updated as well as players will get 20 classic missions that were featured in the older iterations of Microsoft Flight Simulator.

In addition to the upcoming 40th Anniversary update, players will also get to enjoy a German cities update that coincides with Gamecom 2022 held in Cologne, Germany. The update features visual and detailed improvements to five cities in Germany those being Hanover, Dortmund, Dusseldorf, Bonn, and last but not least, Cologne.

“In addition to the helicopters and gliders, we will introduce another highly-requested community feature: a true-to-life airliner, the sophisticated Airbus A-310 where nearly every single button works just as expected, – Jorg Neumann

What’s disappointing to see is that we haven’t seen more iconic airplanes added to the roster in a while. Microsoft should look towards adding military options into the mix. We hope to see some aircraft like the C-130 developed by the Lockheed Martin Company back in 1947. The aircraft has a rich history as it not only transported goods, troops, and cargo to areas of war, it also aided in helping immigrants and prisoners escape from the clutches of war, helped flood victims across the globe, and has aided in humanitarian ventures. 

We’d also like to see an XF-11 espionage and spying aircraft that was designed by the Hughes company and commissioned by the United States Air Force. What makes this aircraft interesting is that Howard Hughes got into the cockpit of this airplane and managed to crash it in Beverly Hills, California. After surviving, he wanted another test run of the second iteration of the aircraft to which the United States Air Force refused.

In addition to the rich roster of aircraft which Microsoft plans to grow in the future, the game looks visually impressive with high-resolution textures and a jaw-dropping draw distance. Truly, Microsoft Flight Simulator is a work of art, and the effort put in by Microsoft Studios truly shows.

F/A-18E Super Hornet with the Maverick Livery for the Microsoft Flight Simulator Top Gun: Maverick Expansion Update | Xbox

Microsoft has been slowly but gradually increasing the number of high-resolution cities to Flight Simulator with added bumps in performance across the border with no visual fidelity degradation. The game also added a Top Gun Maverick Expansion which added Maverick edition livery to the F/A-18E Super Hornet along with three training missions for the aircraft. An incredibly difficult aircraft landing challenge was also incorporated.

The game is pretty decent in terms of added content and the plethora of areas you can explore across the world. Truly, Microsoft Flight Simulator has improved upon its previous iterations to present us with improved graphical fidelity and in-game content that blows up away.

Microsoft Flight Simulator is available for the PC platform. In addition, players can now get their hands on the title for the Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S via Xbox Cloud Gaming.

And that’s pretty much it for today’s news. We upload daily on Appuals so stay tuned for more. Till then, see you later and goodbye!



Naseer Abbas

Naseer has been interested in PCs and videogames since his childhood. If he isn't busy playing retro shooters, he's tinkering with emulators or learning something new.
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