Microsoft Flight Simulator is so expansive that it allows players to fly just about anywhere in the world. With a variety of different aircrafts, would-be jet setters can explore their favorite hot spots without worrying about the dangers of traveling during a global pandemic.
But where do you travel first when the whole world is your oyster? As PCGamesN notes, a new documentary exploring Microsoft Flight Simulator’s creation, developers revealed an interesting tidbit. Nearly three-quarters of first-time flyers knew exactly where they wanted to go after they completed the game’s tutorial: home.
Developer Asobo Studios spoke with Noclip host Danny O’Dwyer about users’ choices to fly home, something that hasn’t been possible since COVID-19 made it a dangerous proposition for many to travel.
“When the coronavirus hit, I was supposed to go visit my family, and I couldn’t because they live in Germany,” said Microsoft Flight Simulator head Jorg Neumann. “So I flew there, and I called my parents and we just talked about the weather, it was the same time of day, same weather, it looked exactly right. I basically called them up and said ‘I’m as close to you as I can get.'”
Microsoft Flight Simulator has acted as something of an analogue for home visits for many, as Neumann discussed during the documentary, which can be viewed in full above. But for others, having the chance to inspect their stomping grounds in the virtual realm is a cool opportunity that doesn’t come around very often. While Google Maps allows users to “fly” to spots they designate in their browsers, it’s a much different experience to leave a familiar airport or fly into one on your own. The game recently added a slew of new locations to explore in the UK.
PCMag awarded the game 4.5 out of 5, calling it a “one-of-a-kind experience” that “feels like magic.” While there are some lengthy load times and performance issues, this entry set the bar for other simulation titles.