MSFS update: WASM, live stream date, and more!

Some weekly updates from the Microsoft Flight Simulator team come and go without much comment as they are essentially short status checks as of late, however, this one from yesterday (March 9) had quite a bit packed into it worthy of note including some big updates coming for Xbox fans, a new developer livestream, Discovery videos about the An-225 and talk about the marketplace.

WASM (and the potential for complex airplanes) comes to Xbox

Web Assembly modules (or WASM) is planned for the next Microsoft Flight Simulator sim update and the big news there is that it will bring Xbox users more or less up to par with PC users when it comes to flying complex aircraft. While some aircraft are functional enough within the MSFS environment, many others (PMDG’s 737 for example) are reliant on external processing and the solution that the MSFS team appear to have found is the implementation of WASM into the sim.

A new addon has arrived in the Xbox Store that adds support for WASM and Microsot Flight Simulator although it adds no functionality as of yet. Here’s what they said:

Additionally, to enable Xbox support for 3rd Party aircraft which use WASM, we have recently released a new addon to the Xbox Store. At present, this addon is not functional, and downloading it will have no effect on Microsoft Flight Simulator. Once WASM on Xbox support is available, this addon will install automatically when Microsoft Flight Simulator is launched on Xbox. We’ll have more details to share about WASM on Xbox support as we get closer to the release of Sim Update 12.

MSFS Developer Update

There’s a whole section on it in the SDK for those so inclined.

Marketplace improvements

One of the biggest issues with the marketplace is the slow intake of updates and new aircraft releases. Some developers have waited months and even years to get their product featured.

The big change will be the shift to Marketplace Partners taking on the testing and functionality sign-off of all content. This is a process that until now had been conducted by Microsoft staff. Instead, under the new guidelines developers take on their own testing regimes and verification.

I suspect this won’t offer a substantial issue for high profile developers as they already do their own testing and releases via multiple third party storefronts and to then see a Marketplace update arrive weeks (or months) later.

As always, buyer beware and do your own investigation before purchasing a module that may not be living up to expectations or standards of release. I and many other content creators are here to help with reviews and information where possible!

An-225 Discovery series

A new, four part series, created by the iniBuilds team is now available for the An-225. The first two videos are around 20-minutes long while the third video is a deep in-depth look at the aircraft and has a 1:24 minute run time. The fourth in the series is “just” 35 minutes in length.

If flying this six engined beast is on your todo list, these are worthwhile videos to watch.

Marketplace highlight on the Got Friends Mini-500

I’ve already covered it in a previous update on the state of helicopter content in Microsoft Flight Simulator, however, its nice to see developer Got Friends getting the MSFS Marketplace treatment with a Microsoft branded trailer for their Mini-500 helicopter.

The helicopter is in the marketplace for $14.99 USD.

Read the MSFS Development Update for March 9, 2013 for the full list of the latest updates in the marketplace and across the whole of the product.


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