Today third-party developers had plenty of news to share about upcoming add-ons for Microsoft Flight Simulator, including aircraft, airports, and... more.
We start with a rather unusual announcement from Parallel 42, which is well-known for exploring unique original ways to enjoy the simulator. The developer announced the "Juice Goose."
If you're wondering, it's a buggy. You can see it below. While this is the first car released for the simulator, it does look unique because it appears to be built to work well with uneven terrain, which may make it a lot more fun as an exploration tool.
The PC-12 requires some more work before it's sent to Pilatus for approval, and below you can read what the developers still have to do.
- All the aircraft systems are now complete. Unless something unforeseen is found by the testers while we are away, we expect that there will be no major problems to resolve. One major issue was that the condition lever is not working properly on Xbox, but the cause is known, and we will address it before we release the plane on the console.
- Flight model: we are still wrestling with the flaps. As we've said before, MSFS does not give us what we need to achieve accurate flap behavior, so we are trying to find the right balance between real and wrong.
- Avionics: Mostly done. What is left is mostly aesthetics and some minor functionality that is missing. As we've said before, WX/PLAN mode on the HSI and the KMD850 will be added in a patch.
- Exterior model: Done. A couple of useless but cool details left to add.
- Interior model: Improving the textures, ETA week 1 of September.
- Sounds: 5-bladed version is done, 4-bladed will be completed when we come back. You will be pleased!
The Van's RV-8's exterior model is complete alongside the glass cockpit variant and systems programming. The flight model is ready for checking and all that's left to be done is finishing the analogue cockpit and sounds.
We are deep into adjusting the fly-by-wire system on the 777, conducting data collection from within MSFS and comparing aircraft performance across all realms of flight to the established performance curves for the airplane itself. So far testing is going exceedingly well, and the refactoring that took place over the past year has lead to exceedingly positive results and a 777 that flies appropriately, like a 777.
Flight deck integration is still underway, with most of the fine detail work accomplished and we are now well into verification of switch movement, system controls and other refinements. The displays have received an entire rewrite, allowing us to leverage the far-more-capable rendering engine of MSFS in order to increase the fidelity of the displays on the airplane.
System integration is going well with numerous small issues being resolved, as well as some holdover behavioral changes called for by service bulletins and a couple of airworthiness directives issued for the airplane being factored into the system operation.
The models themselves are moving along nicely, with entirely new animation sequencing being used for all exterior model animations.
The cabin details are being added- and I must say the interior is beginning to look exquisite.
Over all- this being our third major MSFS project- we have learned a tremendous amount about the platform and how to leverage it's capabilities to give us the accuracy, visual fidelity and detail that we want for this flagship product.
We have actually had the word "beta" appear on a few team discussions on the 777 lately- but there are a few more details to tie up before we hand her to the testing team. They are certainly waiting and eager, and we know that.
The developer also provided an update about its universal flight tablet EFB, which will be added to the existing 737 models and the upcoming 777, on top of further PMDG aircraft.
We are pushing another build of the tablet to our wide beta team that includes a significant amount of changes related to their feedback from the first round of testing that was just concluded. Changes have run the range from small cosmetic fixes, to changing the way some of the data handshake takes place between the airplane and the tablet, since this is an entirely customized communication medium.
We are having internal discussions on potential release dates for the tablet- which is a normal and positive sign for the v1.0 update to be released.
Tablet is expected to release to our direct customers as a free update, and it will then find it's way to marketplace customers after going through the marketplace intake process. We are currently still expecting the tablet to work normally and without restriction for Xbox users, but with the caveat that we don't have a reliable way to test this until we get to marketplace intake- so while we do not expect problems- there is always that asterisk hanging over the xbox platform. We shall keep you up to date with what we find when we hit that stage of testing.
Microsoft Flight Simulator is available now for PC, Xbox Series X|S, and Xbox Cloud Gaming, including Game Pass. If you'd like regular updates on the upcoming add-ons for the sim, you should stay tuned on TechRaptor as we have daily Microsoft Flight Simulator news on the topic to keep everyone up to date.
You can also take a look at our interviews with Microsoft's Jorg Neumann about the Antonov An-225 "Mriya" and iniBuilds' CEO Ubaid Mussa on the activity of the popular third-party developer.
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