Posts Tagged ‘Flight Simulator’

The Flare Path: Accosts Accomplished Add-On Artisans

2014 wasn’t exactly a bumper year for standalone flight sim releases. Apart from the flak-nibbled IL-2 Sturmovik: Battle of Stalingrad, and eccentric WWI curios like ILYA Muromets and Canvas Knights simulated clouds had simulated skies almost all to themselves. Fortunately the add-on sector was as vigorous and ambitious as ever. Today in The Flare Path I catch up with five top flight sim supplementers, all of whom have worked their windsocks off this past twelve months. Recently discovered the delights of DCS World or purchased the A380-sized bargain that is FSX Steam Edition? Beware! What follows may pluck at your purse strings.

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The Flare Path: Devoted To Dovetail

Dovetail Games’ vision and mission statements are remarkably similar to The Flare Path’s. Replace “company” with “column”, “hobbies” with “articles”, and “delight and retain customers” with “debag and retrain readers” and they’re pretty much identical. Whether we see eye to eye on flight simulation matters remains to be seen. I was rather hoping that this week’s word slab would serve as a Rosetta Stone to the exciting but enigmatic press release issued by Dovetail on Wednesday. Searching questions were sent Kent-ward, lengthy responses received, yet somehow I still find myself confused by the Chathamites’ aerial intentions. Read the rest of this entry »

Train Sim Devs Getting Into Planes With Microsoft Tech

Trains, Planes & Publishing Deals

Microsoft are shutting down Microsoft Flight in October, they announced only last week It’s a sad, small death for what was once of The Big Names in PC gaming. Well, sort of. This week brings news that as Microsoft Flight prepares to fly off into the sunset, Microsoft’s fly ‘em ups will live on in an unexpected way. Train Simulator creators Dovetail Games have licensed the rights to Microsoft’s tech, planning to start making their own flying machines. They’re also re-releasing ye olde Microsoft Flight Sim X on Steam later this year.

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X Marks The Spot: Fun With Microsoft Flight Simulator

This is the latest in a series of articles about the art technology of games, in collaboration with the particularly handsome Dead End Thrills.

I promised myself I wouldn’t do how-to guides because there’s seldom much to say, but this one doesn’t count: I don’t actually suggest you do this at all. It’s a how-not-to, then. A how-ton’t. See? Even the jokes are a mistake.

You get used to this kind of logic when playing with Flight Simulator X mods, where the mods aren’t quite mods and the playing isn’t quite playing. Not in the case of Tileproxy, anyway, which is so special and problematic a thing that I just had to remind you it exists.
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The Flare Path: Pole Stars

The Flare Path knows what it takes to plod across plateaus of pristine whiteness for day after day. Perhaps that’s why he has a picture of Robert Falcon Scott marmaladed to his fridge door, and a stuffed Avro Shackleton dangling from his bedroom ceiling. It could also explain why he’s decided to visit both the Arctic and the Antarctic in the deep-frozen hunk of seal blubber that is this week’s column.

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Chocks Away: MS Flight Flies Feb 29th

Just looking at this screen costs you 200 Peggles
Just like Holly Genarro’s plane had to circle the airport at Dulles Airport in the 1990 classic Die Hard 2: Rudder Me This, Microsoft’s free-to-play air-to-plane sim Flight is still up in the air. But fret not, fokkers, for Microsoft will be getting all John McLaine on its crew section, and exploding a planeful of terrorists to create runway lights on the 29th of February. That’s when everyone will be touching down on the crunchy snow and into Bruce Willis’s comforting embrace. Er, and the game’s out.
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Heidi High: The Accu-Sim Piper Cub

We flight simmers are gaming’s reluctant hermits. We often go hours without seeing another polygonal personage. Sometimes we don’t even have our own arms and legs for company. It’s tough. Lonely. Thank heavens someone has finally sought to end the solitude. Not only is A2A Simulations‘ latest FSX adjunct – a Piper J-3 Cub – one of the most convincingly modelled sim steeds I’ve ever had the pleasure to pilot, it also comes with its own responsive cockpit companion, Heidi.

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Air Hauler: Pie Crates Of The Caribbean

Two weeks ago I didn’t have the faintest idea where Great Inagua was. Now, thanks to Air Hauler, a rather splendid Flight Simulator add-on that transforms FSX into a globe-spanning courier sim, I know every crinkly mile of its dragon’s head-shaped coastline.

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Blue Sky Thinking: Aerosoft Dare To Dream

Mathijs Kok has balls the size of Catalina blisters. The head of internal development at Aerosoft is talking about taking-on undoubtedly simulation’s scariest task: building from scratch a Microsoft Flight Simulator successor. If you’ve got a feature suggestion that doesn’t involve blue ice, ornithopters, or lawn chairs and helium balloons (already included in my petition) Aerosoft want to hear about it.

A Bolt From The Blue: ACES Gone

Some staggering news from Redmond via Gamasutra. Microsoft have just euthanised the most successful sim studio of all time. ACES, the team behind the Flight Simulator and Combat Flight Simulator franchises, are effectively no more. A skeleton staff of six will be kept on to service existing ESP contracts but it’s curtains for everyone else. Blimey.


Read on for ill-informed speculation.

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