A bunch of big announcements are coming out of Gamescom today from the Asobo Studio and Microsoft Teams as they lay out new content that is coming to the sim over the next several weeks. World Update VI and the Ju52 are not new announcements but the introduction of the sims first eVTOL in the form of the Volocopter and the Reno Air Races are. Let’s check it out!
World Update VI: Germany, Austria and Switzerland
A teaser is out for World Update VI which is focused on Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The update comes with the usual collection of about 100 famous locations that are handcrafted, new airports in the form of Lübeck, Stuttgart, Klagenfurt and St. Gallen, and the usual assortment of bushplane flights and landing challenges.
World Update VI is also expected to incorporate some key updates to the sim that should resolve some of the ongoing issues that people are having since Sim Update 5. So I expect this to be a consequential update for the sim.
World Update VI is scheduled to come September 7.
Ju52 ‘Local Legend’ coming
Microsoft and Asobo Studio are planning to release several new aircraft in a series called ‘Local Legends’ and the first one, the Junkers Ju52, pairs nicely with the launch of World Update VI and its German setting. It should be interesting to see what other historical aircraft they add to the mix.
This add-on aircraft has been created thanks to some high resolution laser scanning of a real Ju52 and the flight model has apparently been tweaked thanks to comments and feedback from the last real world Ju52 pilot.
Asobo has announced that the aircraft will go on sale on September 7 for $14.99 USD. Polygon also appears to have erroneously reported that it would be available for free although that is only written in the headline and not mentioned in the article. If something changes here I will be sure to update.
Reno Air Racing!
The 30 second teaser posted above is part of a new update that has just been announced. Asobo will be bringing the famous STIHL National Championship Air Races to Microsoft Flight Simulator in partnership with RARA (the Reno Air Racing Association).
Focused on the high performance, low altitude, air racing at Reno, this new update is reportedly “the first major expansion” for Microsoft Flight Simulator and that seems to suggest that competitive multiplayer gameplay is the objective here. Here’s what the update had to say on that:
Simmers will now be able to race against their friends or pilots from around the world with the addition of competitive multiplayer to the sim. The Reno Air Race expansion pack will be available this Fall.
This should be very interesting indeed as it brings more structured gameplay to Flight Simulator. I’ll be curious to know how that works.
The eVTOL concept has been talked about more and more recently with the idea that short range flights between locations can be quickly and easily be handled by electric powered VOTL aircraft. Now, this futuristic concept is coming to Flight Simulator with a partnership with Volocopter.
In collaboration with the team at Volocopter, we are integrating their electric air taxis and incorporating Volocopter’s vision for urban air mobility city operations into Microsoft Flight Simulator. The VoloCity air taxi represents our first step toward the introduction of one of the widely-requested aircraft – helicopters! The VoloCity air taxi will release in November of this year.
So, once again, an interesting concept. I also know that it’s not exactly the helicopter that everyone was hoping for but it is seemingly a step on the road.
Next few months
With releases in September through November, it appears that the autumn should be a very interesting time for fans of Microsoft Flight Simulator.