Third-party developers released new assets and details about upcoming flights and airports for Microsoft Flight Simulator on top of a new release.
First of all, we get a new development update on the Boeing 737 in development at PMDG from CEO Robert Randazzo along with an ultra-detailed work-in-progress screenshot of the cockpit.
“We are not happy to rest on our laurels, we have been hard at work throughout the holiday season, with a massive amount of sophistication for the 737 cockpit. The image here will give you a small idea of what we are up to as we continue to focus on graphic quality, model refinement, coloring, lighting and really fine details.
I grabbed this screen (pretty unpretentiously) using the Windows clipping tool … so it may not be the most well-formatted image, but I think it gives you a good sense of how the detail work is shaping up. Almost all buttons and announcers have been rebuilt (again!) To bring out even more detail, enhancing the feeling of immersion.
DANGER: This image is of an aircraft under development, so you may notice layout problems, etc. These are expected and will be swept up / cleaned up as a normal part of the development.
For my test flight tonight, you can see that I base out of Reno and use runway 7, not because the wind favors it very often, but because the terrain past the end of the runway is very annoying to EGPWS and the various suppression logic processes it contains . There is no better way to test it than to point the plane at the high desert ridges while hoping that your performance data is accurate.
When we talk about EGPWS, you can see that the data view function is present and functional, as well as the profile view of VSD. The profile view is still being adjusted so that the logical redraw call adjusts for airport altitude, and I did not have time to enter a departure route so you can see all the symbolism, but you can clearly see the terrain profile out in front of the plane. The aircraft’s vector will easily allow you to see your climbing performance vs. terrain, which is useful in a place like Reno, especially at night or in bad weather.
Oh and on the subject of EGPWS: I’ve seen a few people refer to it as “terrain radar.” It’s usually there I make a chuckling sound of disapproval. Now … It’s not. Radar. And I would hate for any of you to be perceived as un-serious or ill-informed when you reach the Flying Club Bar and Grille after the flight, so follow me here: This is a data-derived view of terrain information. It comes from the EGPWS unit in the E&E bay of the aircraft and is not dependent on radar for mapping. After all – radar can hardly penetrate heavy rain showers, so it certainly can not pass through terrain to show you what’s on the other side … So now we do not call the propeller a “twisted thing in front “so go do not call this thing” terrain radar “. Unless you’re flying something that fires missiles – in that case, yes – you can actually have “terrain radar.”
(Since someone wants to play “gotcha”: EGPWS uses a pair of radar transceivers located on the belly of the aircraft, but they are for altitude measurement and do not deduce the details of the terrain being displayed. Apparently here in the US these transceivers are also useful for receiving fake signals from 5G antenna installations, creating a huge feud between the FAA and the mobile companies … but it’s FAR above my grade, so let’s just stick to using the terrain radar thing to help us smash twisted things into the granites in front …)
The wise will also notice that I have my 737-700 configured as an early serial number using both the Honeywell mode control panel and the full analog suite of standby meters. Honeywell MCP is interesting because it has very clear button shapes, to make it easier to make changes without looking at the button, I suppose. In particular, the IAS / Mach button is a strange form to grab with your fingers, leading to some crude jokes and occasional swear words if you’re in a hurry to keep up with ATC’s speed, course and altitude changes at once. You will also notice the amount of detail that has gone into the face of the MCP, especially the buttons and knobs. Even down to the crooked paint on the course and height buttons. Up close, these things look as if they have been painted during Honeywell’s “bring your child to work” as the finish is a bit strange and the identifying shapes embedded in the knob caps are actually painted with a brush, which leading to normal human imperfections.
It’s weird … but that’s exactly what it looks like – and it adds a huge amount of realism to the MSFS panel.
The analog standby meters add the pleasant sound of the standby altimeter vibrometer, which always reminds me of my early flight days, when most planes still had one. The incessant clapping would drive you crazy during a cockpit brief, but eventually you learned how to tune it out or how to depower it. (Disclaimer: I never would. I also do not know anyone who would ever do that.)
Overall, things are getting started and we are getting into some areas where we are trying to clean up sim differences that may prove annoying to the users and investing some engineering time in trying to clean them up. An example of such a thing is that the standard Boeing landing gear switch used here is an affair with three positions, and as such you would like to move the switch to the OFF position after takeoff. However, MSFS has decided that it would be fun to continuously send your hardware controller position data in real time, so if you move the switch to the OFF position but you have a gear switch on your hardware, it creates all sorts of chaos.
In other areas of the 737, we are pretty quickly slipping on the list of things we have outstanding. I expect that we will start integrating the latest Navigraph API for map viewing into EFB this week, which will be good as it has long been a point we have been saying “we’ll get to that right at the end.” I’m starting to record video for compilation for a few previews, and the process of mapping the tutorial videos has also begun … Stay tuned for more on that. “
Next is the announcement of an airport that probably needs no introduction and is badly needed in the Microsoft Flight Simulator, Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport (PANC) in Alaska, USA.
It is being worked on by VREF Simulations, and below you can see some pictures that are in progress.
Another announcement comes from Impulse Simulations, which shared its 2022 roadmap after Coffs Harbor (YCFS). The developer plans to work on Darwin International Airport (YPDN) and Bendigo Airport (YBDG), bringing even more scenery to the already rich Australian scene.
The latest revelation comes from developer Jeroen Doorman, who will release Heide – Büsum Airport in Germany with Aerosoft (EDXB).
Below you can find a trailer.
On the cover of the releases, France VFR had a big one today with its France North-West package. It includes plenty of airports in the region, on top of additional scenery.
It can be purchased at Orbx Direct or SimMarket for about $ 38. Here is a list of content and lots of pictures.
28 enhanced airports and aerodromes with photorealistic 3D modeling for some of them.
3 major military airports added (does not exist in MSFS) with photorealistic ground structure.
Detailed soil textures and markings.
Realistic static flying club aircraft on all platforms.
Numerous animations and precise details.
Vegetation reworked on the platform and its surroundings.
Realistic night lighting.
Photorealistic areas reworked into 9 platforms including military surrounding areas (Angers, Belle-Ile, Dinard, Evreux, Landivisiau, Le Havre, Lorient, Saint-Nazaire and Vannes).
Main obstacles and VFR landmarks referenced by SIA (Aeronautical Information Service) (approximately 400 obstacles and VFR landmarks).
Main lighthouses and lighthouses (approx. 60 objects) including approx. 30 extremely detailed lighthouses.
Marinas and moorings with marinas (approx. 200 berths) on the whole landscape.
Numerous remarkable objects (5200 antennas, 6400 castles, 2400 water towers, 7200 churches, 1700 wind turbines, 5400 industrial tanks, 15800 greenhouses, 440 high voltage transformers, 3300 silos and 150 agricultural tanks …).
Electric pylons network (63kV to 400kV) including safety height day / night markings.
Road and motorway signs (approx. 13000 signs) on the main road network.
Railway pylons near airports and airports.
Campsites near airports and airports.
Coastline and main rivers partially cleared of excess vegetation.
Railway and electrical networks cleared of excess vegetation.
Compatible with all our other product ranges.
SIA – VAC – IAC – APT – ARRDEP charts are provided.
We recently published our latest interview with Microsoft Flight Simulator chief Jorg Neumann, and we heard more about Microsoft’s plans for the next few months, including World Update Australia.
If you would like to read more about Microsoft Flight Simulator add-ons, enjoy our latest reviews of Auckland International Airport, Skiathos Airport, Athens International Airport, Bergamo Orio al Serio Airport, Amami Airport, Bristol Airport, Marrakech Menara Airport, Great Britain Central , Tehran Imam Khomeini Airport, Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport, Shanghai Pudong Airport, Kraków Airport, Fukuoka City & Airport, Fort Lauderdale Airport, Chongqing City & Airport, Manila Airport, Santiago Airport, Frankfurt City Pack, Key West Airport, Okavango Delta, Bali Airport , London Oxford Airport, Berlin Brandenburg Airport, CRJ 550/700, PA-28R Arrow III, Kristiansand Airport, Macau City & Airport, Bonaire Flamingo Airport, Milan Linate Airport, Singapore City Pack, Tokyo Narita Airport, Yao Airport, F-15 Eagle, Paris City Pack, Greater Moncton Airport, Tweed New Haven Airport, Santorini Airport, Sydney Airport, Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, Reggio Calabria Airport, Ba stia Poretta Airport, Munich Airport, Paris Orly Airport, Newcastle International Airport, Sankt Johann Airfield, Dublin International Airport and Seoul City Wow. We also have a beta version of Singapore Changi Airport.
To learn more about the game itself, read our review that will tell you everything you need to know about Asobo Studios games.
Microsoft Flight Simulator is already available for Windows 10 and Steam and Xbox Series X | S.
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