My observations on the state of A.I. in MSFS 2020 (post SU5).
A.I. Assist (aka: ‘A.I. Co-Pilot’ RIP)
This has just never properly worked since launch. Theoretically having the A.I. takeoff, fly and reliably land your plane on the correct runway, without catastrophe, should be just a simple matter of coding (all of the information is already in the sim, after all), but it’s never been fixed (not even in SU5, sadly). ‘Totally hands-off’ flying for us virtual tourists who don’t really want to pilot as much as sight-see has still yet to arrive in the sim.
Sometimes it used to work in previous builds, sometimes not - you could never really be sure and, even when it did appear to work, it was so half-hearted and vague it might just have well not bothered showing up at all. Again, another mystery why working, dependable A.I. traffic seems to be an unsolvable problem. SU5 seems to have killed A.I. Traffic off completely.
Why worry about A.I. stuff at all?
Strangely, some of us do enjoy our virtual world to at least suggest the illusion of life, of autonomous background activity. Some, like me, would even take particular delight in ‘a sim that flies itself’ (something A.I. Assist implies but does not yet reliably deliver - competent landing seems completely beyond it, in its present state).
No, it’s not core to the flight simulator experience if piloting is your main reason for being here. That’s understood. But nice things are nice - and fully-working A.I. background systems would be very nice indeed.