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Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024 will not have "gamey" missions, because "we are not a game"

It will have better physics and a richer simulation

FlightSimExpo is underway in Houston, Texas, and yesterday Microsoft and Asobo delivered a lot of new detail regarding the recently announced Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024, its new aviation activities, and changes to its physics simulation and performance.

Microsoft Flight Simulator head Jorg Neumann called the announcement trailer shown during the Xbox Games Showcase earlier this month "paper thin", and noted that there were a lot of understandable questions about whether MSFS2024 was simply an expansion. Far from it, Neumann said, calling MSFS2024 "biggest undertaking ever in flight simulation."

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"We polled a bunch of things, and the one thing from all [different kinds of player] was that people wanted more stuff to do. We said, 'okay, cool, fair enough, let's go make things like that.' But we are not a game," said Neumann. "So we're not making game-y type missions at all. What we're doing is accurate aviation activities. We're working with lots of organisations across the planet that do these things. That do firefighting, that do search and rescue."

Sebastian Wloch then spoke about how, to support future content updates and Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024, the game will "only download what is needed" in order for you to play. A thinner client will reduce installation size, loading times, and help keep the minimum system requirements low, Wloch said.

MSFS2024 will also have a new physics and aerodynamics engine to support the new activities, including tissue, rope and other soft body physics. Wloch showed a neat prototype of a hot air balloon being inflated. Some of these changes are also designed to give more control to community creators who produce aircraft to sell within the Flight Simulator ecosystem.

All of these changes are backwards compatible, too, meaning previously created community content should continue to work as before, whether the creator upgrades it to the new system or not.

Finally, for those players - like me, probably - who remain committed to aerial tourism around Flight Sim's recreation of Earth, there will be a more dynamic world to explore. That includes the Aurora Borealis, more animal herds, worldwide live ship traffic, and "improved" vehicle traffic.

You can watch Neumann and Wloch's full presentation archived on Twitch.

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