Microsoft Flight Simulator 40th Anniversary comes out tomorrow

It’ll be a big day for Microsoft Flight Simulator tomorrow as Sim Update 11 comes out as part of a very special 40th Anniversary edition. There’s release date times and lots of content to be excited about so let’s have a look at the latest developer update.

Free update, lots of content

What’s amazing to me is just how much Microsoft Flight Simulator has offered up for free over the last couple of years. World updates, Sim Updates, and a good chunk of new aircraft and scenery all made available for free. The 40th Anniversary Edition promises to offer the biggest chunk of free new content that we’ve seen yet.

The new aircraft included are broken up into four different categories. Historical aircraft are recreations of some of the most iconic aircraft in history and across the many iterations of Flight Simulator. We also see official introduction of helicopters and helicopter flight support built into the core of the sim which should mean that aircraft makers will be starting to fill the ranks with helicopters in short order.

iniSim’s A310 is intended to fill a gap for an included high fidelity airliner. Very curious to see how that compares to other recent offerings.

As a reminder, here is what’s included.

Historical Aircraft:

  • Wright Flyer
  • Ryan NYP (“Spirit of St. Louis”)
  • Douglas DC-3
  • De Havilland Canada DHC-2-Beaver


  • Bell-407
  • Guimbal Cabri G2


  • DG Flugzeugbau LG8-18
  • DG Flugzeugbau DG1001E neo

True-to-Life Airliner:

  • Airbus A310

And you can see all of them in the 40th Anniversary trailer that came out a few months ago.

In addition to new aircraft we also have some unique scenery entering the mix including the famous Merrill C. Meigs Field in Chicago. This was the default field of the original Flight Simulator and I have memories of playing this version of the sim and flying out of this airfield.

The airport no longer exists in real life but with this update we’ll be able to add it back in and enjoy it as it once was. Very neat!

Today, the most recent developer update included this note about the project:

Tomorrow we will be releasing the free 40th Anniversary Edition update to Microsoft Flight Simulator. This is the biggest update to MSFS since its initial release in 2020, and it has been a huge labor of love and source of pride for the development team. To our millions of loyal fans and sim pilots, from those who have been with us since the start with MSFS 1.0 way back in 1982, to those who embarked on their first simulated flight with the latest version in 2020, thank you for being part of this journey with us. The sky is calling!

Release times have been released as well.

And with that, we wait for tomorrow!

Check out the latest developer update right here. Check out the 40th Anniversary announcement note here and see the global release date times as reported by the Microsoft team here.


24 Comments Add yours

  1. HyperTextHero says:


    Liked by 2 people

  2. harryvoyager says:

    So for April 1st are they going to start having annual Meigs Field demolitions?


    Liked by 2 people

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Could be a fun fly-in 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  3. CanadaOne says:

    Looks good. A free DC-3 is fine with me. And really looking forward to the helicopter support. That’s a big one.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Oh yeah, the helicopters alone are going to usher in a whole new segment to MSFS. Will grow the sim a bit more!

      Liked by 2 people

  4. BravoAlfaZulu says:

    Did you miss the Hughes H-4 Hercules – The Spruce Goose from the list?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      You know, I just realized it wasn’t on the list. I’m trying to find out why it isn’t on Asobo’s list…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. BravoAlfaZulu says:

        I hope it isn’t because it’s been cancelled! 😮 I’ve been SO looking forward to it!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. ShamrockOneFive says:

        I hope as well!

        Liked by 1 person

    2. HyperTextHero says:

      Also the Curtiss Jenny!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. SYN_Vander says:

    These are missing from your list:
    Curtiss JN-4 “Canuck” – by iniSimulations
    Grumman G-21 Goose – by iniSimulations
    Hughes H-4 Hercules “Spruce Goose”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Thanks Vander. I wonder what happened to their list…

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Al-Azraq says:

    Can’t wait for this! I am a DCS and IL-2 fan but I want to jump into the more relaxed MSFS 2020 experience. The problem is that I just have a HOTAS (Virpil) so I am mostly restricted to stick planes.

    So far I have the FlyingIron Spitfire Mk. IX which is great, but I am interested in the Beech 18 and Justflight’s T1 Hawk and Turbo Arrow.

    What do you think about flying GA planes with HOTAS?

    Of course, if I stick to GA simulation I would eventually get a Honeycomb Alpha and then Bravo.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. steelcitygator says:

      I’ll always have a special place in my heart for MSFS2020 because it got me from casual interest in flight sims to full send and I did it with a HOTAS because I knew my long term interest was the combat sims. It works great. Honestly, if you’re comfortable with it then it will be good enough. Especially the GA planes, maybe the big airliners are a bit different but I don’t fly those lol.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Urgent Siesta says:

      I mostly fly DCS, but also the civ sims. Has never been a problem to fly Skyhawk, Boeing, Bonanza and even helos with the setup.
      Don’t limit yourself! 🙂


  7. Firdimigdi says:

    > What do you think about flying GA planes with HOTAS?

    My dear fellow, you can’t possibly mean that. What’s next? Cutting a steak with a butter knife? I think not. The ignominy!

    Works great on my end. Maybe combine with some DIY controls for the ultralight STOL planes for that extra rustic feel. I made a push-pull throttle/mixture/rpm combo with some rods, 3 slider potensiometers and a $5 Arduino knock-off in an aluminium housing didn’t cost much in total (under $30 for sure) and was done in an evening.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Firdimigdi says:

      * WordPress cut the “snobbish voice” tags I had put around the first paragraph. Just in case that wasn’t obvious.


    2. Al-Azraq says:

      Hahahaha thanks buddy! I will use my HOTAS for now but aiming to get a yoke if I keep at it.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Urgent Siesta says:

    new trailer has all the “missing” planes 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Thank goodness!


  9. Rex says:

    You forgot the Goose


    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Asobo did. Which was weird and I just went with it.

      Full featured article with a better list coming.


  10. Skycat says:

    I just found on Reddit there is an Easter Egg in the 40th Anniversary Editio. where you can play the early Flight Simulator versions:
    “Load up in the DA62 and set ELT to the on position”

    I have not confirmed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      I just saw that too! Too cool.


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