Jorg Neumann and Sebastian Wloch from the Flight Simulator team were once again the guests answering questions about the future of Flight Simulator with talk about everything from freeware aircraft to which region is due for world updates to adding a replay feature. It’s all covered here.
Some highlights from the latest Q&A
The Q&A, posted yesterday, covered a wide variety of items including some that are of some interest in the community. Here’s a list of notes that I wrote while watching the Q&A that you may find interesting:
- Yes, the “Press Any Key” prompt is going away
- VR is coming and a closed beta for Flight SimVR is now open.
- The United States will be the next area to see a World Update
- DirectX12 will bring improvements but only small ones expected
- Freeware aircraft (such as the FBW A320neo upgrade) appearing in the marketplace is something that is being discussed, aircraft such as the A320neo are licensed and so they are inquiring with their partners on how it can be supported
- Jorg is particularly keen on providing freeware support
- Replay functionality exists but right now is a developer mode (requiring two computers and a local network)
- Multi-screen functionality is being worked on by the engine team, it’s in the pipeline
- Clouds and visibility are going to be further improved, especially for high humidity/haze situations, Asobo want to make their weather top notch
- Asobo had a philosophy of staying away from making study level aircraft (i.e. airliners) and Garmin navigation systems to leave room for 3rd parties, however, Jorg says that they are changing their minds on this and are removing bugs first before adding more features. Says third parties really want to see default Garmin avionics that they can just use.
- Additional VFR landmarks and an obstacle database are being worked on
- Seasons are something that they want, but it will be a bigger task and will take a while
- Shared cockpit is something that they want to do and will take some time to do – interconnected with multiplayer, replays, control priorities, etc.
These Q&A sessions are great to see happen and it looks like Asobo plans to do these on a monthly cadence for some time to come. It’s great to see them responding to top questions on the forums and giving us insight into how they are approaching different features and how they are reacting to problems that are discovered.
I and others have said this before but I think the key thing here is that release of Microsoft Flight Simulator is just a starting point rather than an end point. With world updates, new features that improve the core of the sim, new functionality like VR, and upgrades to things like the avionics systems are all ways that this sim can improve. It isn’t perfect and it may never be perfect but the fact that they are working to iteratively improve these functions are a great things that should sustain the sim for a long time to come.