Microsoft Updates Flight Simulator

Microsoft Updates Flight Simulator
Flying enthusiasts will be able to take off in Microsoft's improved flight simulator from next year.

(CCM) — Microsoft has taken the armchair aviator world by surprise with the announcement that it is to update its Flight Simulator X title for the first time in thirteen years, according to a CNBC report.

The new version of the simulator will be available next year to subscribers of Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass service.

Flight Simulator X won the Guinness World Record for the longest running video-game series in 2012, thirty years after it was first released. But aside from an expansion pack issued in 2007 and the release of the simulator on Steam in 2014, the company has done nothing with the title since 2006. This has led many commentators to assume that the series had been abandoned.

The new version of Flight Simulator is unlikely to generate significant revenues for Microsoft as many game enthusiasts prefer to play on their smartphones or tablets rather than sit for hours behind a PC screen.

"You've got so much competition in the general gaming area that it's hard for a simulator of flying a plane from point A to point B, without much of a purpose or drive behind it, to keep that momentum going," Reed Stough, a partner at software developer Rex Game Studios, said in the report.

But the update could be used to showcase Microsoft's latest technology, including mapping imagery from its Azure cloud, according to the report.

Image: © Microsoft.