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Have You Played... Microsoft Flight Simulator 98?

For its RC planes

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Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

The best thing about Microsoft Flight Simulator wasn’t that it let you fly planes. It was that it let you fly remote controlled planes.

This might seem counter-intuitive: why simulate a simulation when you could simulate the real thing? The answer of course is that I was 13 and the simulation of the real thing was intimidatingly, bafflingly fiddly. I couldn’t face the manual and the 13 switches needed for take off. I could, however, face the simpler controls for flying an RC plane.

To be honest, it was a more ideal fantasy for me anyway. I didn’t know anyone who flew 747 airliners, but I did know and was terrible jealous of people who flew model planes.

Of the game itself, I mainly remember soupy ground textures, awkward ground camera positions – since there’s no cockpit view for remote controlled planes – and crashing a whole lot. None of which stopped me playing this thin slice of game over and over again.

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Graham Smith

Editor-in-chief

Graham is to blame for all this.

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