Flying has always exerted a tremendous fascination. Already in antiquity, people dreamed of leaving the ground and floating through the air, as not least the legend of Icarus, which flew too close to the sun shows. But only for about 120 years, people can explore the sky with the help of airplanes themselves. With the advent of computers and computer games, ordinary mortals have been able to fulfill their dream and indulge in flying for many years. However, in the past, even the best flight simulator did not come close to real fly experience. This will probably be with the upcoming Microsoft Flight Simulator (buy now for 22,48 €) 2020 do not change completely. Nevertheless, the simulator developed by Asobo is already damn close to reality – that applies to the optics as well as the mediated flight feeling. We were able to convince ourselves of this during our "arrival date" in the context of the X019.

Already the first moving pictures, which we got to see at the past E3, made it impressively clear that the new Microsoft Flight Simulator visually wipes the floor with almost every other existing game. However, the flight simulator had yet to prove that such scenes are feasible in real game operation and it was not about pre-rendered passages. Therefore, we were very excited to finally play on the X019 itself.

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as never before - Preview (7)

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as never before – Preview (7)

Source: Microsoft

The heart of the new flight simulator is the "Twin World", as the developers affectionately call the virtual replica of the real world. In principle, the entire world is reconstructed in more or less detail. From the mountain peaks of the Himalayas to the lanes of New York or the canals of Venice. And the level of detail is overwhelming. While flying over Seattle, not only did we recognize well-known buildings such as the Space Needle, but we were also able to pick up a lot of detail on even the smallest homes, whether it's furniture in the front yard or air conditioning on the roofs. Had we had enough time, we could have counted the individual seats at CenturyLink Field Stadium. Added to this are a lot of procedurally generated content such as traffic, flora or fauna.

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as ever - Preview (2) "src =" buffed.jpg

Source: Microsoft

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as never before - Preview (5) "src =" buffed.jpg

Source: Microsoft

During more than seven years of development, the team at Asobo, helped by Bing Maps, has created a world that is simply impressive. With the size of the earth and the high degree of detail, it is not surprising that we can not even load them on a hard disk, unlike other computer games. The Twin World we're in is cloud-based and a whopping two petabytes in size. That's about 20,000 Blu-ray discs. We just download the area where we are currently traveling by plane. Incidentally, we may set the amount of data to be downloaded to PC or Xbox. And if you have a weakening Internet connection, you can also download and enjoy certain areas beforehand. If you fly to an area that has not yet been downloaded without an Internet connection, you have to settle for a rudimentary world in which many contents are not true to the original and the level of detail is considerably lower.

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020: The gameplay trailer of the X019

Increased simulation factor

But not only in the field of optics, many progress has been made. Also, the simulation factor, already very high in the previous parts, was further enhanced. For example, the individual aircraft are no longer calculated at just one point, but each model has various calculation points at which air flow, pressure and much more is measured. Clouds are not simple textures, but calculated 3D objects, which of course have influence on the aircraft when flying through.

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as ever - Preview (17) "src ="

Source: Microsoft

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as never before - Preview (18) "src ="

Source: Microsoft

In order to further increase the realism and simulation factor, Asobo also works with various pilots who provide advice and give the developers comprehensive feedback. How close you are to reality can perhaps be guessed from the fact that various airlines have already requested from Asobo to upgrade the flight simulator for pilot training. That's what the developers told us in an interview during the X019. Of course, there are also various weather effects that you either preset manually or simply let the current conditions of the real world recreate. The weather and above all the wind should now also have a significantly greater influence on your aircraft than in its predecessors.

Flight over Seattle, Naples and the mountains

That was the theoretical part of our virtual pilot training, now we come to the practical part. How did the new Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 feel like? In three scenarios we were able to let off steam and prove our pilot abilities: a sightseeing flight with a Cessna 172 over Naples, a start at the airport of Seattle with a Robin DR-400 as well as a landing approach to a small mountain airport with a TBM 913. It was easy to see how different the planes are. Although they are three propeller machines, you could immediately feel the sluggishness of the larger planes over the agility of the more than half as light Cessna! Small movements on the joystick allow the machines to follow easily, while violent movements quickly cause trouble in the flying boxes.

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Fly as realistic as ever - Preview (8)

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Fly as realistic as ever – Preview (8)

Source: Microsoft

We were also able to observe the effects of the various weather effects when the developers changed the weather conditions (and also the time of day) at random during the flight. Just as we glided elegantly through the air during the day, we soon had to work properly in the dark to keep the single engine in the air. And also the adjustment possibilities of the degree of realism were shown to us. After I had brought the plane on the runway relatively gallantly on the first try, the developers turned off all help and left me to the maximum reality factor. Although I brought down the propeller machine thanks to thousands of hours in other flight simulators without total loss, but from a good landing, there can be no question. In the Microsoft Flight Simulator, simulation fetishists and amateur pilots alike get their money's worth.

Big jets, campaigns, missions and VR

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as never before - Preview (10)

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Flying as realistic as never before – Preview (10)

Source: Microsoft

Apart from the three short flights, which proved above all the graphic splendor and the high simulation factor of the upcoming Flight Simulator 2020, there was not much to see yet. In several discussions with the developers, we were able to squeeze out one or the other information. So should the upcoming version again include various missions, a protracted campaign is currently not planned. However, there should be the possibility that the community creates missions and missing aircraft itself and delivers. But there are not too many missing planes because Asobo is already in contact with all well-known manufacturers and wants to implement most of the common types of aircraft directly. In addition, the Flight Simulator 2020 to support multiple screens, which had one or the other flight simulator in the past so his problems. VR, on the other hand, was at the beginning part of the considerations, but is currently put on ice. However, with many fans asking, it is quite possible that the development of a VR mode will resume.

Also read these interesting stories Microsoft Flight Simulator: VR, Campaign, Realism, Alpha Start - Developer Interview (1) "src =" pc-games_b2teaser_169.jpgPCXBO

Flight Simulator: Developer interview on the flight simulator

On the X019 we could not only test the Microsoft Flight Simulator ourselves, but also talk to the developers. PCXBO

Microsoft Flight Simulator: Detailed video about the imposing game world

Asobo Studio has released the first full episode of the Feature Discovery Series video series on the Microsoft Flight Simulator. It's all about the calculation and presentation of the very detailed game world. Both the quality of the internet connection as well as the Azure-KI from Microsoft and cloud computing play an important role. The developers also explain that there is an alternative offline mode for players without (good) Internet connection. The release of the Microsoft Flight Simulator is scheduled for 2020 on the PC and Xbox One. PCXBO

Microsoft Flight Simulator: New video shows the impressive game world

As planned, Microsoft has released a preview of the Discovery Series video series for the Flight Simulator, which introduces the most stunning game world. The Discovery Series will introduce certain aspects of the game in more detail such as game world, weather, aerodynamics and cockpits. The first "correct" episode will be released on October 10th.

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