Microsoft Flight Simulator blew the world away when it first launched with its wonderful real-time take on the world, a world that you can then soar over from the cockpit of some beautiful airliners. As the game launched on PC in 2020, and Xbox consoles in 2021, players all around the world gradually had their moments where their jaws dropped as they realised the impressive nature of what Microsoft and Asobo Studio had created. Now, we’ve learned about how Xbox head, Phil Spencer reacted when he saw Microsoft Flight Simulator in action for the first time.
Jorg Neumann, the head of Microsoft Flight Simulator has reflected upon the development of the game, in an expansive interview with Video Games Chronicle, saying,
When I first pitched this, the very first demo I showed to Phil [Spencer] was Seattle in 3D. I flew over Microsoft Campus – literally the building we were sitting talking in – and he was like, ‘why are you showing me a video of Seattle?’ Then I knew I’d got him.
hen I said, ‘this is real time’ and he said, ‘no f***ing way’ [laughs], and we knew we had something. None of the guys in that room were simmers, and they all felt something.
Phil Spencer continually portrays a cool, calm exterior when presenting to media or the community, so to learn of this level of bubbling over excitement, continues to build his game and fan-focussed image. Meanwhile, Neumann continued to reflect upon the achievements of Microsoft Flight Simulator, and attributed much of the game’s success to the fact that it acts as more of an earth simulator as opposed to the flight simulator that it’s titled,
When we launched, we found people that liked or had some respect for airplanes, but they really liked the planet. That’s the killer app. That’s what brought in new people. If this had been an exceptionally well-executed physics simulator with an atmosphere and airlines, I don’t think it would have gone anywhere near as far.
Just last week, Microsoft Flight Simulator launched its 40th Anniversary update, bringing new aircraft, gliders, and helicopters to the virtual earth world. Several historical aircraft, including the Wright Flyer, the Spirit of St Lewis, and the Hughes H-4 Hercules ‘Spruce Goose’ have all been added to the game with the update, which is now available through Xbox Game Pass.
Microsoft Flight Simulator is available now on PC, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and via Xbox Cloud Gaming