New Microsoft Flight Simulator boasts 613 Aussie airports

written by Adam Thorn | July 23, 2020
Microsoft Flight Simulator Airport
Microsoft Flight Simulator claims to feature virtually every airport in the world (Microsoft)

The new edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator will allow users to take-off and land in 613 airports in Australia.

The game, released on PC on 18 August, is believed to be the first in history to recreate the entire planet in detail, allowing users to pick any spot on the globe and then begin flying.

On Thursday, a spokesperson for the highly-anticipated sequel confirmed to Australian Aviation that almost every runway in the country will feature, alongside 37,000 global airports.

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It came days after it was announced the game would feature a special “hand-crafted” replica of Sydney Airport, including animated windsocks reacting to real-life weather; staff going about their work and accurate signs and taxiways.

The new edition will uniquely use Microsoft Bing Maps – its rival to Google Maps – to recreate the entire planet accurately. That includes 1.5 billion buildings, 2 trillion trees, mountains, rivers and roads with cars and real-life activity.

Players will be able to fly around this world in up to 30 aircraft ranging from the A320neo to a Cessna 152 and Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental. All feature accurate cockpits with realistic controls and instrumentation.

Users can either download it upon release or buy a physical version that will come on 10 double-layered DVDs. Microsoft claims the entire game will be 2 petabytes in size or roughly 2 million gigabytes.

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The new Microsoft Flight Simulator, only announced late last year, has been shrouded in secrecy with Microsoft scrambling to remove videos of it from the web uploaded by players testing out early versions. It represents its big investment in the billion-dollar battle with rivals Sony and Nintendo.

The sim will come in three versions, ranging from US$60–US$120, with the Deluxe and Premium editions including more planes and airports.

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5 Comments

  • Dave Tonks

    says:

    As a long time flightsim enthusiast (I wrote flightsim articles for a few aviation magazines for a few years) I am really looking forward to this one. Do yourselves a favour and take a peek at the pre-release videos – awesome!

  • Sami Makelainen

    says:

    One of the more interesting things is that MSFS2020 will come with VATSIM support from day 1. While that’s awesome, one wonders how the potentially massive influx of ‘newbies’ will impact the experience

    In any case, exciting times for the flightsim community – as an added bonus, I believe it can also introduce aviation to a whole new group of people, too.

  • AlanH

    says:

    2 petabytes = 2 million gigabytes!!! Who has that sort of capacity on their laptop?

    • Adam Thorn

      says:

      Haha! I think this is the total amount the game could potentially have when things are streamed from the internet and, yes, Microsoft have clearly worked out the biggest size they could get away with! But it will be a huge simulator and a big step forward for computer games (though they don’t want it called that).

      Thanks for your comment,

      Adam

  • Mark Bruechert

    says:

    Alas, YBDG Bendigo, Victoria, which until Covid-19 struck was hosting Qantas flights to Sydney on a daily basis, is nowhere to be found in Flight Sim 2020. Yet a previously unknown grass strip to the North, Epsom, has popped up out of nowhere. I cannot believe I lived at Epsom for so many years, completely unaware we had an airport next door!

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