Microsoft Flight Simulator Installation Process Upsets Steam Users

The game uses an external launcher to install nearly 100GB of files which racks up Steam playtime.

By Ben Bayliss

August 19, 2020

While Microsoft Flight Simulator is receiving a lot of praise for looking beautiful and feeling wonderful to fly, there’s also a fair share of people on Steam complaining about the way the game handles installation.

On Steam, the game is receiving a lot of negative reviews —over 1,000 at the time of writing— because those who purchased the game through Valve’s digital marketplace are potentially going to be unable to refund the game. Why? Because Microsoft Flight Simulator’s installation process opens its own installer, which recognizes the game as being played on Steam. This means the lengthy process of installing nearly 100GB of data through the game’s launcher all counts towards the Steam playtime.

Steam uses playtime to determine whether a refund is eligible, with it being indicated that the user requesting a refund must have “less than two hours of playtime” on the game they’re trying to refund. Going through the user reviews, one user claims to have been granted a refund from Steam even though the playtime was listed at around 14 hours, which was most of that was spent apparently downloading the game.

At current, it looks as if the majority of negative reviews complaining about the playtime haven’t actually tried refunding yet, or at least haven’t updated their reviews to indicate if they have or haven’t tried.

While the majority of negative reviews are regarding the installation process, some user reviews seem to be complaining about crashes and issues with the game, with a few touching on their systems not handling the graphics. Asobo Studio has already been clear on the specifications required to run the game. The studio doesn’t appear to have addressed the Steam situation, but they do link to a troubleshooting section on the website for those who may be having trouble installing in general.

Why Ratchet & Clank is the Most Important PS5 Game

From personal experience, it can be a CPU hog, and my high-end rig gets fairly hot on High-End graphics. But it’s been a fairly smooth experience overall for me.

Despite the lengthy installation/download process, the game certainly does look stunning, and you can read our review to see what DualShockers thought. The digital marketplace is also now live with a good deal of third-party content available to purchase, including a new plane.

Microsoft Flight Simulator is available on PC.

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Ben Bayliss

Based in the UK and adores venturing through FPS horrors and taking photos in pretty much anything with a functioning photo mode. Also likes car games.

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