Microsoft Flight Simulator Prepares for Takeoff As It Launches August 18

The sky is your limit as Microsoft Flight Simulator is set for launch on August 18, 2020.

Finally, wannabe pilots can spread their wings and take to the skies as Asobo Studios and Xbox Game Studios have announced today that Microsoft Flight Simulator will launch on August 18. The game’s closed beta testing will also kick off on July 30 so that means that any players who have received the code for the Alpha version will be able to take part in the closed beta phase, too. Due to many people being grounded during COVID-19, taking to the skies in Microsoft Flight Simulator will (almost) be as good as heading off in real-life where you can imagine yourself flying off to a beautiful destination.

Creative Director David Dedeine from Asobo Studio previously shared some inside scoops regarding how the weather factors into the game’s mechanics. Microsoft Flight Simulator will introduce volumetric 3D rain along with volumetric rainbow scattering. Each raindrop is also affected by the speed of the plane adding to the realism. Fog is also present, and so is icing which forms on the plane depending on the temperatures outside of the cockpit. To add to that realism of being in an airplane, the game will also use real-world data to determine how the yearly-based day and night cycle affects the position of the sun and moon depending on the time of the year. So during the summer, the sun will be higher, in the winter, it’d be lower. The stars are also positioned accurately depending on the real-world data.

For some imagery to get yourself prepared for what you’ll experience and see while flying, check out these shots of places that include Château de Chambord in France, the mountains of New Zealand, and the iconic Statue of Liberty.

Jorg Neumann, Head of Microsoft Flight Simulator said “We have been thrilled and humbled by the support and dedication that has fueled the Flight Sim community for the past 38 years. Since the launch of the very first Microsoft Flight Simulator in 1982, we knew it was finally the right time to develop the next-generation version of Microsoft Flight Simulator.” continuing “We have the right tools, technology, partners and hardware to release the most realistic and authentic flight simulator to date.”

Three editions of Microsoft Flight Simulator are available: The standard edition which includes “20 highly detailed planes” and “30 hand-crafted airports,” and that will set you back $59.99. The standard edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator will also be included as part of Xbox Game Pass for PC on day one. The Deluxe edition will including everything that’s provided in the standard edition plus an additional five aircraft and five international airports, and retails for $89.99 and lastly, The Premium edition builds on the Deluxe edition, including everything from the standard and deluxe and adding an additional 10 plans and 10 international airports, for a total of 35 airplanes and 45 hand-crafted airports and is priced at $119.99

Microsoft Flight Simulator releases August 18 for PC and preorders are available beginning today. You can also preinstall today with Xbox Game Pass for PC. Although, you may need to free up a little bit of space as the game is reported to be a whopping 150GB of HDD.

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Rachael Fiddis

Rachael, who is Deputy Editor, has been gaming for many years. Some of her favourite video games include The Witcher 3 and The Last of Us but also loves a good indie title. Gaming Culture is where her heart lies and spends many hours sieving through gaming fan art and cosplay displays. Other than gaming, Rachael is a book nerd and music lover.

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