When I think of the history of game consoles, I think of flight simulators.
Nintendo in particular took advantage of the ” Pilotwings »Do not name once, not twice, but three times to show off brand new technology across different generations. I have liked this approach for a long time. Pilotwings games sin on the side of minimal challenge and maximum relaxation, no doubt to allow players to calmly absorb the latest 3D rendering tricks of each era.
I am thinking about this strategy now because Microsoft Flight Simulator launches on Xbox Series X / S this week. As there are approximately eight months until the launch of these consoles, this does not count as a “launch” game. Corn Microsoft Flight Simulator is honestly the first true “next-gen” proprietary console game of the latest Xbox era. Part of that next-gen quality is due to the fact that this game, unlike other proprietary pricing, does not have a “backward compatibility” path with the older Xbox One family.
It doesn’t take long to understand why. After a great PC launch last year, MSFS has now become a lounge game with an emphasis on relaxation, Pilotwings-like trips around the world. Good news, it sets a new bar for 3D rendering performance on consoles, and it currently sits above all other console games. But its PC legacy lingers in the form of some awkwardness. Newbies to flight simulation, especially those who claim the game as part of their Game Pass subscriptions, should be prepared for the turbulence associated with the control and interface.
Pick up speed — and that’s a lot of knots
If you are not familiar with MSFSAs the latest incarnation of, my report on its revelation almost two years ago is a good place to start. Much of what I said then (and what I said in a follow-up review of its 2020 beta) is still true. MSFS 2020 combines Bing’s global mapping data, Azure data centers, and fantastic renderer technology to open the entire Earth to unhindered flight. This development team, led by French studio Asobo, uses a lot of intelligent procedural generation to turn hazy map data into compelling cities, forests, oceans and valleys to fly over.
Since the game’s launch on PC, Asobo has been vocal and transparent about its efforts to improve and refine its aircraft physics simulations, which take into account atmospheric pressure, heat and other weather variables. The results were generally well received by the flight sim community, and the tradeoff for so much beauty and detail of the default world is smoother physical realism and fewer customization options than rival PC flight simulations like X-Plane 11 or Prepare3D. Yet this version of MSFS is Microsoft’s most knowledgeable flyer yet.
A point of communal contention, however, is MSFSnoticeably spotty performance on a variety of PCs. Performance issues and stuttering are more often the rule than the exception, while massive download requirements for various fixes aren’t necessarily favored by PC gamers. MS and Asobo have promised an optimization of the PC version as early as the beta period of the game in July 2020, but to date the PC version brings powerful processors and GPUs to its knees, even at “medium high” settings, not to mention the unnecessarily maximized graphics. cursors.
In terms of CPU optimization, we’re now in “better late than never” territory as the Xbox Series X / S ports are clearly running on an updated, focused version of the engine. Sacred cow, the results are formidable.