2012 was an interesting year. Some wondered if it would be the last year, and of course a movie had to develop that plotline further. Perhaps worse than that, the official online servers for Test Drive Unlimited 1 were shut down, which made us all feel very sad.
Not long later we had the release of the first open world Forza title for XBOX 360 which took us to a version of Colorado which strangely lacked Pikes Peak. It was a good game, and the start of a good series to fill in the void left by TDU, but it just wasn't the same. At least it still provided a few laughs.
But that wasn't all. In March of 2012 we were treated to a new flight 'simulator' from Microsoft, which conveniently for us, featured Hawaii of all places. It was a freemium game with DLC planes, locations and challenges. A number of us do like to fly on PC on occasion.
If you don't count the re-release of a 64-bit version of Flight Simulator X Acceleration on Steam in 2014, then the 2012 release of Microsoft Flight was our last flying update from Microsoft in 7 years. So imagine our delight when Microsoft surprises us with a gorgeous trailer showing us a new version of the simulator due to land (pun intended) sometime in 2020.
Take a look for yourself here:
The trailer doesn't tell us a great deal of details about the upcoming sim, but the amazing detail of the world (without having to purchase and install a hundred add-ons) in stunning 4K definitely has our attention here at TurboDuck. We'll be sure to make a beeline for O'ahu as soon as we can.
Here's what we can deduce from the trailer and it's description:
* Available on Xbox and Windows PC (so it should attract casual fliers)
* Powered by satellite data and MS Azure AI Cloud computing
* Amazing volumetric clouds which cast realistic shadows on the ground
* Bodies of water are not a singular colour, and cities have High Def textures out of the box
* Delicious reflections on aircraft and detailed airport vehicle and building textures with shadows
* A variety of light and stunt aircraft as well as jumbo jets, including the cover-plane from Microsoft Flight from Icon
* Beautiful sunsets accompany expected time-of-day and weather settings
* High-detailed 3D cockpits with the ability to turn your head, bank your aircraft and admire the view below
* Many real-world scenic attractions to visit including what appears to be New York, Dubai, Alcatraz, Egypt, San Francisco, along with coral reefs, mountains, canyons, craters, stadiums, and more
* Lighting and rain effects
* Hundreds of vehicles on the roads and in the carparks below
* Wildlife including flamingos, elephants, and giraffes
* Challenging Alpine landing strips
Want to come fly with me? Let's fly, let's fly away to the Comments section below to discuss one of Microsoft's oldest slogan questions: