Yesterday Microsoft officially announced the next generation of its
popular Flight Simulator product dubbed FSX (Flight Simulator 10). But don't get too excited just yet, you
probably wont see it in stores for another 12 months or so with a
planned release in the 4th quarter of 2006. For a glimpse inside the
new FSX take a look at the screenshots posted over at FlightSim.Com and AVSIM
or read on for the official Microsoft FSX Q & A. Although it does't
answer most of the questions the flightsim community have been asking
it is an interesting read nonetheless.
Microsoft FSX Q & A
Q: When will “Microsoft Flight Simulator X” be available?
A: We are working hard to deliver “Flight Simulator X” in the holiday 2006 timeframe.
Q: What’s new in “Microsoft Flight Simulator X”?
Many of the new features in “Flight Simulator X” are based on requests
from our loyal community who have provided creative input into our
decision process. Therefore, we are excited to bring our fans the most
revolutionary addition to the “Flight Simulator” franchise yet. We take
full advantage of Windows Vista and the latest Windows gaming hardware
to create a beautifully rich and immersive 3D world for aviation fans,
young and old, to explore and experience. The new enhancements extend
beyond the look and feel of the planet. The advances in graphics will
benefit the aircraft as well, and fans will be amazed at the new level
of detail in the models and the realistic effects like sun glint off
the glass and chrome, reflective paint, and even shaded rivets on the
fuselage. For the more game play minded, we are adding a new
mission-based element to give fans a more objective driven experience
with a sense of progression and skill development. We are also
improving the multiplayer technology to allow the community to connect
in new ways. This is just the beginning and, in the coming months, we
look forward to sharing more information about “Flight Simulator X” as
we lead up to launch at the end of the year.
Q: Will “Flight Simulator X” require Windows Vista?
No. While “Flight Simulator X” will not require Windows Vista, it will
be optimized for the latest in Windows gaming hardware and fans will
get the best experience by running on Windows Vista.
Q: What type of computer hardware will I need to run “Flight Simulator X”?
While we are still determining exact hardware requirements, we do know
that it will run on a wide range of configurations because we want to
make “Flight Simulator X” accessible to a wide range of fans.
Q: Will “Flight Simulator X” ship on DVD only?
Yes, for the first time “Flight Simulator” will ship on DVD only in
order to provide the highest level of detail and realism for the
product and we do not plan to offer a CD-based version.
Q: Will aircraft from FS2004 be compatible with “Flight Simulator X”?
Backward compatibly with existing 3rd party content is and has always
been a priority for us, and we attempt to test as many add-ons as
possible in order to provide the greatest level of compatibility.
Q: What are the types of aircraft featured in “Flight Simulator X”?
We will offer a range of aircraft to support a wide variety of flying
experiences and many of the aircraft will be tied to specific
mission-based experiences. Our basic fleet is merely the starting point
because we are going to make it easier to download additional aircraft
created by the many accomplished add-on developers in the community.
Q: How many airports are included in “Flight Simulator X?”
We have included more than 24,000 airports in “Flight Simulator X” and
the coverage extends to every continent. We also focused a select
number of high-detail airports and added a new level of “interactivity”
that the add-on community will certainly expand upon.
Q: What new partners or endorsements will “Flight Simulator X” carry?
We are not quite ready to shine the spotlight on our new partners and
endorsements, but they will be taking center stage in the months
leading up to our launch.