Aircraft ground handling still drastically unrealistic

I just returned to the sim after a few months off. I decided to take a break while the bugs were reduced but mainly because the sim still hadn’t tackled a very fundamental part of realistic flight.

In order to fly, one must first get the aircraft setup on the desired heading, advance to takeoff power, while keeping the aircraft on heading (or centered on runway).

First flight back and to my astonishment, the ground handling is still a big mess. How could this not be a priority?
I hold a private pilots license and this is nothing like realistic behaviour for an aircraft on the ground. It is nearly impossible to keep straight down the centerline, single piston aircraft don’t need right rudder…etc. A mild right crosswind and you need left rudder! Not realistic at all. In real life I’ve never encountered a strong enough right crosswind on takeoff that requires left rudder.

This is a beautiful sim and I want to fly it badly. It would be great to keep my skills sharp for my real flying but unfortunately it’s still a million miles away from anything realistic.

Please Asobo, get the ground handling sorted.

edit I understand that everyone has there own interests and opinions as far as what fixes take priority. I also understand that this is a flight sim and some don’t understand why proper ground handling would matter that much. The best comparison I can think of, while not a great comparison, is a driving simulator/racing game that features nice handling, braking, and accelerating characteristics, with nice visuals, but the gear changing is completely unrealistic. Yes, changing gears may not be an important component for some, but as far as representing a driving simulation, simulating it incorrectly would be a show stopper for many. It’s a small thing but in the overall picture it can kill the immersion.


Before we’re calling on the gods (MS/Asobo)…

A few questions and a few tips… what aircraft is this… and when you started out after 2 months, you must have done a lot of downloads… are you sure you checked Content Manager for an update of the aircraft ? Sometimes things change in the flight model, and settings get adjusted too. We’ve had a major update (SU-5)

Final question, should be easy… If manual, have you checked the Assistence settings and Gyro settings ? If you don’t use assistents, you’ll need rudder. If you do use assistance, sometimes, for some aircraft, you also have to use rudder at takeoff.

Gyro at engine startup is (really) a realistic effect ! Wind too ! change in course on the runway while takeoff will most times be the result of gyro. Compensate it, with a little rudder action.

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Are you certain you have all the assists turned off, and set to realistic?

I agree that the effect of wind while on the ground is completely messed up, but other than that, for instance on a calm day, the single engine pistons typically require a fair bit of right rudder on the take-off roll. At least on my system.

That weather-vaning thing with the wind tho, yeah, thats been a problem for a long time and really does need attention. I personally think that is a friction problem with the tires on the ground, I think the wind effect is actually correct, but I think the tires are able to slide laterally too easily so they don’t provide the resistance you’d expect. Dunno… But it stinks and needs some love for sure.


Park sideways on a hill, and the plane will slowly slide up the hill, defying gravity.


Yeah, I’m constantly fishtailing down the runway (in the A32NX or CRJ) anytime there’s more than around maybe 4-5 knots of crosswind component. It’s lame as but I 100% expect it’s not going to change. We’ll keep getting new features and new bugs every two months instead.


Thanks for the response.
My reply may sound a bit rubbish but here it is:
I’ve been flight simming for nearly 35 years and I have my PPL, and I fly with pedals. I fly all the other combat sims on the market, one of them nearly every day for years. I know how to fly.

I did a better job keeping my Cessna 172 on the centerline in my first real takeoff than I’m able to do in MSFS (in any aircraft). In fact, I don’t think it’s possible to keep it dead center with any wind at all. I’ve yet to have anyone provide me a clip of them doing. A taildragger with a little cross wind- no way.

I fly low and slow taildraggers in the sim and a 172 in real life. The real challenge in both is takeoff and landing, neither of which is realistic in this sim.


We call it lift. :rofl: :grimacing: :pensive: :nauseated_face:


My concern is with the turning radius of some of the planes. Seems to turn too wide for me.

Got to chime in here. After a year, it is ridiculous that this most rudimentary and basic part of flight simulation has not been fixed. They may as well have created a product that only ever starts you in the air.

Don’t get me wrong, I love this product in many ways, and have just about flown it every day since release. But this is one of those foundational elements that simply makes you question what the original mandate of this product was.

For all its beauty, which they arguably keep on screwing with, there are still some elements that are less evolved than past generations of the franchise.


A 2-Engine jet in this sim requires full deflection on rudder mid runway on takeoff on a calm day, it has been like that for as long as I can remember…


This is a pretty major issue to me as well. I don’t have any RL experience, but even then it’s easy to tell that some things are just way off. If aircraft behaved this way IRL there would be way more accidents during takeoff.
For me the worst offender sadly seems to be the JustFlight Arrow III, at least in some flights. It can basically starts sliding left/right almost a full wingspan before I can react, and without any severe winds.

I’ve also noticed that it’s not rare to need left rudder on takeoff in a single-engine prop.


In addition to what I said earlier… Its worth mentioning, that if the plane is jerking around on the runway even in relatively calm conditions, you might just want to dial back your rudder sensitivity.

Back when the sim first came out I found all the axis controls to be way over-blown… roll and yaw were especially bad. So if you’ve never cleaned that up, you might look there.

I think the forces with no wind are about right on my install, I am also an old man with a decades of sim experience and a PPL. No one is questioning your experience (or mine, but as long as we’re waving our certificates around as validation, hey, there you go).

And again, the wind thing is a circus, we do agree on that. Rudder settled on final all nice and groovy, tires touch runway and all of a sudden the circus big top music starts and the plane is skittering all over like a Benny Hill skit. yeah, that part is definitely not right.


Maybe nothing, but worth a try for the fish tailing (not the sliding along the ground when parked thing).

My buddy found out all his rudder problems were due to his joystick twist axis (also a rudder control) interfering with his rudder pedals. Once disabled he now has no problems.

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Being a real life pilot yourself- how many times have you flown with “no wind”?
My aim wasn’t to wave my certificates. I was trying to avoid the “check your settings, get pedals,…etc”.
If you honestly believe the sim reacts properly on the ground then I’d love to see a video clip of you tracking centerline from dead stop to rotation. It’s very easy in real life yet I’ll bet you can’t do it in the sim. I’d bet anything. There you go- a challenge :slight_smile:


Peripherals should also be discussed before hanging the sim out to dry. I own the Thurstmaster T-Flight Hotas, which has a twist rudder input.

In any sort of wind and flying the Bonanza I do a fair amount of fish-tailing down the runway. I find I over correct a lot. I will need to relearn how to fly when I eventually get rudder pedals!

I’m not sure what hardware the OP is using but it should also be looked at.

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Same here, love the Arrow, but taking off is more like close your eyes and get done with it. I’m not a pilot but it is just impossible that this is how RL works. Otherwise, really live the sim.


The C208 has a popular mod that improves on this, amongst other things.

If you are talking about the takeoff wobble as you approach rotation speed, try 1st stage of flaps with about 5-7 degrees of up trim. I’ve not had that wobble since, even in strong crosswinds.

Exactly the same question here!

Most of the priorities in terms of realism ground handling/Turbulence: updraft, downdraft, convective winds, gust winds/Flight Model: Adverse yaw etc are still considered as secondary more than a year after the release date!!! … and we are supposed to talk about a Flight Simulator!? :thinking: which looks like more as a Scene Simulator as a matter of fact because those bugs should have been fixed since a long time ago!

That is the reason why my MFS2020 is taking dust since months… I had hopes with the Sim Update 5 but hopes collapsed right away after a few tests, I can’t handle the lack of realism on my side anymore despite the realism about elephants on the ground… Just waiting that MFS2020 become a Flight Simulator eventually.

Meanwhile I really enjoy with Xplane that is close to my real flight experiences and certainly that doesn’t allow me to fly a PA28 in or under CB or in TS in order to take some screenshots (like in MFS2020 through eyes-candy purposes) but obligates me to care about my flight plan based on the weather data to avoid danger in the sky for the sake of safety or/and I can practice training T/O and Landing/Gust winds because METAR/TAF match the real world data of the weather conditions of the day via Active Sky, flyings tubes for instance with a reliable and solid flight model for some of the third party addons…

Can’t wait to do the same with MFS2020! … and to get back on the topic, I can’t wait to be able to take off with the Just Flight PA28 without getting hit strongly by the left after V1 for some weird reason?!? A big time bug that is still there since months (not because of Just Flight Devs as we can notice this bug with other planes) as if it was more important to add contrails in the sky than to fix a terrible issue that also makes MF2020 unrealisitc in many terms, but you know the Sacrosanct Wish-List is the wish-list :pensive: … Let’s put that way!

Happy Flyings! :wink:


You’re right!

Trust me on that the PA28 doesn’t behave at all this way on the ground and during T/O in the RL (fortunately! hh) as many other pilots who fly this bird could tell you the same without any doubt! During my PPL I used to fly the Archer and after the PPL the Arrow R-180 for a while, (not the Turbo one as I have in my MFS2020 hangar but anyway) and as it doesn’t behave that way in Xplane 1, easy to compare both of the flight models…


I wish nobody will bet on that, he/she will loose a lot! :pensive: :grin: