Flight Simulator is also a weather simulator

Microsoft Flight Simulator is combining a lot of very impressive features into the new sim in order to put together what appears at this point to be a revolution and groundbreaking flight simulator. Their latest Feature Discovery series, focused on their weather system is now public on YouTube for everyone to watch.

Real world weather and the visuals to back it up

Flight Simulator is undeniably beautiful looking with the shading, shadows, and generated scenery that is pushing the boundaries of flight simulation. I don’t think it’s hyperbolic to say that as these are truly some combinations of technology that we haven’t seen before or just were not possible.

Injecting weather into the simulation is not new. We’ve seen this technology over the last few years for other simulators but with Flight Simulator we’re seeing an impressive combination. There are impressive visuals with a couple dozen layers of volumetric clouds together with the injected weather data. The clouds cast shadows on the ground, on themselves, and they pick up reflected light from the ground including from city lights. The weather is localized and rain is confined to specific areas of precipitation rather than an area effect. Accurate rainbows are even included in the weather system.

There are weather presets built into the sim as well but when you want to pull in the latest weather report, Flight Simulator should be able to deliver.

It’s impressive stuff and Asobo Studio, the developer behind the new Flight Simulator, seems to have weather well in hand. As a weather watcher and enthusiast, I appreciate the attention to detail.

Check out the feature update to see what they have planned!

4 Comments Add yours

  1. ArkhamUK H.O.G says:

    As a glider enthusiast I’m very interested in their weather systems details. Currently Condor 2 is the only sim that really does the sport justice in terms of weather IMO. If MS can model all that and things like thermal lift from structures/car parks on hot days, my appetite in very much wetted. Being able to try gliding anywhere in the world is just too good to be true. Put in VR and I might be gorging myself on this sim. Gotta keep the hype down though otherwise its never going to be as good as we now expect lol. Exciting though,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      It sounds like they may be heading in that direction. I am curious to see if they add a glider to the mix. We haven’t seen one yet but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t intending to do that.


  2. Alex says:

    I remember that FS 2002 used to have an option to download the current weather from internet…

    From Microsoft https://support.microsoft.com/en-my/help/841214/known-issues-with-the-real-world-weather-feature-in-flight-simulator:

    “Starting with Microsoft Flight Simulator 2000, you can use the Real-World Weather feature. You can download “real-world” weather data from the Internet and display the data in the flight simulation.

    Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 also included a new feature that is named “Dynamic Weather.” The Dynamic Weather feature in Flight Simulator 2004 affects the formation or the dissipation of clouds, the onset of precipitation, and the movement of frontal systems.”


    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Indeed they did and X-Plane does this as well. Products like Active Sky XP for X-Plane and P3D take things up a notch and it is that standard that it looks like Asobo is chasing for their product.

      Basically, if you see a cloud outside your window, you may be able to go into the sim and see it there too.


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