February 2023 Developer Stream


Introduction from Jayne

Jayne - Hi, everyone! Welcome to our first developer stream of the year! We hope you’ve had an awesome relaxing holiday season. (Thank you for allowing us the same!) But we’re really happy to be back today to talk about what we’ve been up to, answer some of your questions, showcase what we have coming up in the near future. My name is Jayne Reynolds. I’m the Senior Community Manager for Microsoft Flight Simulator and your moderator for today. Of course, below me, we have our three lovely flight sim devs. On our left, we have Jorg Neumann, head of Microsoft Flight Simulator. Hi Jorg, how are ya?

Jorg - Hi, great! Happy 2023! Super late, but hi!

Jayne - Thanks, Jorg! In the middle, we have Sebastian Wloch, CEO and co-founder of Asobo Studios. Seb, how are you today?

Seb - Hello! I’m great.

Jayne - Good! Glad you could join us. And to your right, we have Martial Bossard, executive producer at Asobo Studios. Welcome back, Martial!

Martial - Thank you very much, and happy new year, everybody!

Jayne - Yay! A few reminders today for you, chat. We have, I believe, three Q&A sessions throughout the stream, dedicated to various topics. We solicited lots of feedback from the forums this month. So, when we get to those categories, of course, feel free, as well, to ask some live questions and we will do our best to answer some of those, as we get to it. But we have a lot to cover. So I’m going to kick it off, here, to Jorg to start us off on our presentation.

Introduction from Jorg


Jorg - Yeah, hi everyone! It’s been a few months. Great to be back. I saw in the pre-chat some stuff that I want to also acknowledge. First one, it is the last Boeing 747. Fifty years. So, I remember the first time I saw one of those things. Amazing. Anyway, sort of a bittersweet moment, I think. Another thing: Somebody was just asking about the Marketplace situation. We had lots of discussions about it. We’ll talk about it today. It’s one of the last Q&As. So, definitely going to talk about this.

Jorg - Anyway, so having said that, so, I hope everybody had a good time off, or spent time with family and friends. From what we’ve seen, seems like you had a good time with the 40th Anniversary Edition. I thought it would be fun to share something with you, just kind of interesting stats. So, we launched, obviously, on 11/11. And since then, we’ve almost had 20 million flights just on the 40th Anniversary aircraft. Really nice. So the top one was the A310 – not too surprising – from iniBuilds (great plane), followed by the two helicopters, then the DC-3 from Aeroplane Heaven got a ton of love and usage, which was wonderful. And then, even all the other planes, the Spruce Goose all the way down to the oldest one, the Wright Flyer, had really great engagement. So, hopefully you had a good time! It seems like you did.

Jorg - And so our team, as Jayne said…we took a little bit of time off, which was great. And the team has been fully back to work, obviously, since the new year. I read somewhere in the forums that the weekly updates were a little light. That’s true. But it will just resume as it was last year this week. [Jayne - Awesome.] So, expect that to be back. The DR [development roadmap] and the FS [feedback snapshot] are going to be fully there.

Jorg - So about 2023, as I said, before the break, it’s going to be super cool! AAU 1 [Aircraft and Avionics 1] was yesterday. Many of you were in the flights, and the feedback on the flight was great. Collaboration between Working Title, Asobo, and the community, I thought, was outstanding. And it really produced something really good. I think the three planes [Cessna Citation CJ4, Cessna Citation Longitude, Daher TBM 930] are substantively better. I think the avionics, for those of you who tried them, are so much more realistic. It’s really wonderful! And yeah, so that was the beginning of the year.

Roadmap 2023


Jorg - Let’s look at our roadmap real quick. Last time, we talked about (so all the way at the bottom, AAU1, that’s already launched)…and then, the next thing that’s coming is New Zealand. We moved it back a few times mostly because of a PR event we’re doing, actually, in New Zealand. I’m flying to New Zealand, folks. But anyway, [Jayne - Jealous!] it’s on the 23rd. I think in New Zealand, it’s going to be on the 24th. I think it’s going to be lovely. I wanted to say, I’ve spent a lot of time in New Zealand, both virtually and sort of in the news. Heart goes out to people in Auckland with the flooding. It seems like it’s getting a little bit better. But, it was dicey seeing those cars floating on the streets. But anyway, so New Zealand is coming. We’re going to talk about this in a minute. And then we’ll talk about the [De Havilland DHC-4] Caribou, and we have the developer here, so it’s going to be fun. So, here we are. I put some slides together.

World Update 12: New Zealand


Jorg - World Update 12. Beautiful Milford Sound. (So let’s go through this a little bit.) Yeah, so when we talked about it in November, this was the plan: New aerials, new DEM [digital elevation model], four bespoke airports, 30 POIs [points of interest], six photogrammetry cities, and then our typical set of landing challenges, bush trips, and discovery flights. We added to that. Maybe I just want to explain: So, here’s the DEM. (Sometimes, you guys like to see this.) So, we were super fortunate that the New Zealand government worked with us, and right before we had to lock down content, they released the top tip of the North Island and the top tip of the South Island, and we integrated all that data. We have a ton of the country now at 1-meter DEM. And if you look at the next two pictures, I just wanted to show just how good this looks. And it’s pretty awesome. That’s the only word I have for this. It looks just great! So that’s the DEM.

Jorg - Airports, we wanted to make four. And then, upon further reflection, we said, you know, “Could we not add a few?” So I reached out to NZA Simulations, and Josh [Purcell, founder, NZA Simulations] has his team. And his team said yes! And so we made a few (rather, NZA made a few for you) that are coming up with the update and then Orbx added another one. So we ended up with nine, which I think is exciting. There are some pictures. (Jayne can just peruse through it. Couldn’t resist making pictures, you know. There we go!)

Jayne - Everyone loves a good airport photo.

Jorg - Rotorua, that’s interesting. Yeah. Alright, so that’s coming. And then, points of interest, we said “We’re going to make 30.” (And Jayne, if you start clicking…) We got really ambitious. We also talked to people in New Zealand some more and what was really important to them. So we added and added and added some more. All of this was done by Orbx. And we ended up, I think, with 62. I want to say that that’s true…but a lot! And really cool ones. There’s like animated ski lifts and stuff. And Holger [Sandmann, Head of Geospatial, Orbx] and his team did an awesome job putting details in. Really making – like dolphins jumping. Stuff’s cool!

Jayne - I’m seeing people in chat saying we’re going too fast, but this will be on YouTube. And you can press the pause button once it’s on there and stare and take screenshots to your heart’s content.

Jorg - So then, on the photogrammetry – here’s Wellington – we had planned on six. We ended up making seven. Lots of work. There’s a new team, actually, at Gaya helping us with that to edit. Remember the Canada update? We had some things with bridges and some buildings that didn’t look amazing. So, Gaya has now a team that helps us with that, and they’re doing a great job. So, the New Zealand cities look top notch.

Jorg - And then, at the very end, I couldn’t resist: I talked to our data provider, Bexel, and said, “We’re doing New Zealand. Come on, now, we need to fly a plane over Hobbiton!” So they did over the Christmas holidays. We got the data super late, but you know, I couldn’t, somehow, at some point, I said, “We can’t ship New Zealand without Hobbiton. It’s just not a thing.” So, anyways… [Jayne - For sure!] So, we have Hobbiton. It looked good. And then, activities, we had nine planned, and we ended up doing ten. (Here’s a little bit of detail.) For the first time, we’re adding – which is really nice – we’re adding gliders and helicopters to some of these things. Give a little bit more diversity. (So you can just scroll through it, Jayne.)

Jorg - So again, the team got excited. We did a little bit more than we intended to. But I think the package is wonderful, and, so as I said, it comes out in three weeks.

Jayne - Awesome, thanks Jorg! And coupled along with that, we have…

Local Legend 8: De Havilland DHC-4 Caribou


Jorg - Local Legend 8: The De Havilland DHC-4 Caribou. Made by Orbx. And here’s an image of it. (Maybe?) Here it is! And I think we have a little bit of a trailer. I wanted to tease a little today. You know, they’re not quite done, by the way. The team’s still working on it. But you’ll get a sense.

Jayne - Yeah. Here is a teaser for the trailer:

Jayne - Alright! Felt like it was just getting started! But…

Jorg - I know! [Jayne - There’s a little bit for ya.] But we have something better! We have something better. We have the actual development lead here, Ben McClintock [Head of Technology, Orbx]!

Ben McClintock, Orbx


Jayne - Ben! [Ben - Hi, everyone!] Welcome to our dev Q&A. Glad to have you! And we’re excited ‘cause you’re going to show us a little bit in the sim of what we’ve got going on, here. You’re sharing your screen. We’re taking a look inside the cockpit.

Ben - Yeah, exactly! So, I’ve got a few different parts of the Caribou I want to show everyone. So, just a bit of background on the Caribou: It’s the ultimate short takeoff and landing [STOL] machine. It first flew in 1958 and entered service in 1961. Most Caribou went into military service, but some performed civil missions. And the Caribou served with the Royal Australian Air Force up until 2009.

Ben - So, just taking a tour of the main panel, here…you can really see the level of detail we’ve gone into. You can tell that this panel has had multiple layers of paint applied over the years, and that is true to some of the reference aircraft that we had. It’s got a radio pedestal in the center that slides in and out to help pilots get into their seats, ‘cause there’s actually quite a step up from the main cabin to get to where the pilots sit. Some of the details on the overhead…so, you can see all of the cables going into the throttle. The throttle has the gust lock. So that stops the throttle from moving fully when you’re on the ground.

Ben - And if we turn around, behind, very slowly, you can see we’ve got things like the circuit breaker panel. And we actually tried to make quite a few of these work. So, just as an example of that, if we change the time to night a little bit more… And you can also see the night environment of the Caribou is super good, as well. If we look back in the cabin, for example, one of the circuit breakers is the cabin light. So you can see, of course, that can switch on and off. And, while we’re here, I think we should open the rear cargo door. So that’s fully modeled, as well, and the procedure is quite simple: Cargo door master switch on. We can start opening the ramp at the bottom, and also the door section at the top. We’ll go outside, take a look at that. (Probably a bit more light.) So, small detail with the cargo door: In a few seconds, you’ll see this 15° light come on. So, this is primarily used when they’re dropping cargo from the air like skydivers or, you know, other air drops. And getting past this is simple: Just use the aptly-named 15° limit override, and you can see that light will go off and the door will continue going down.

Ben - So, taking a quick look through the cabin, here…the Caribou was originally designed as a military cargo and troop carrier. And we’ve modeled the cabin with a mixed layout. So it can either fit 32 troops with their gear, 8000 pounds of cargo, or 22 stretchers. Alright, let’s take a quick look outside the aircraft. So, this is one of the seven liveries we’ve included with the Caribou. Similar to the interior, the exterior is based on laser scans of the aircraft alongside thousands of pictures to help our team recreate it in detail. You can see just some of the details, especially in the landing gear, or if we take a peek inside the engine. You can see we’ve modeled lots of those details. One of the really unique features of the Caribou, I guess, is the wing has both anhedral and dihedral components. And it has flaps that are massive. So, I’ll quickly start the engines with Ctrl+E, but you can also use the checklist or startup by flipping the switches. You can’t hear it, but the sounds are really, really good. And I’ll start lowering the flaps. And you’ll be able to see that even the ailerons are part of the flaps system. And the inboard flaps, here, go down to 60°, which is part of the reason the Caribou has such good slow speed performance. It stalls at 59 knots, which is only 10 knots more than the Cessna 172. And when you’re standing next to the Caribou, you can really see just how tall it is. So, with the real reference aircraft, I stood here, just thinking, “Wow, this is actually quite big!” So the tail, the total height is 31 feet or just under 10 meters.

Ben - So, if we’ve got some time left, still, I’d like to, really quickly, take off just to show the short field performance. And I’ll just quickly close the doors, because it would be embarrassing if the pilot forgot that. And, we’ll just taxi over to the runway really quickly. So, this airport is Shell Harbour airport, which is where this particular Caribou is based. (One of our reference aircraft.) So, we spent a lot of time getting the flight model right with the Caribou, especially at slow speeds. Things like running so many both manual and automated tests to make sure it flies as close as we could get it. And, once we line up here, we’re able to see just how fast it can take off. So, on my PC, I can hear the sound. There’s two Pratt & Whitney R-2000 Twin Wasps, with each engine delivering up to 1450 horsepower.

Jayne - That was a quick takeoff!

Ben - You know, see, it’s really fast! There’s a few more maneuvers that I won’t show on the stream because I’ll probably crash. But, the real Caribou pilots, at every air show, they do the wheelbarrowing maneuver, which is where you can have it rest on the nose gear and drive along the runway on just the nose gear. But that’s a fun thing that people can try at home.

Ben - So yeah, this is the Caribou!

Jayne - Incredible! Yeah, highly detailed! Thank you so much, Ben and the team at Orbx. We’re very excited to see this in the sim, soon, release. Thank you for joining us, Ben, of course. Looks like chat is as excited as we are for it. And it’s great to see it working in the sim!

Ben - Yeah, thanks. It’s been fun to work on. Thanks, everyone!

Jorg - Great job, Ben. Thank you!

Jayne - Thanks, Ben!

Q&A 1: World


Jayne - Alright. So, with that in mind, we will move onto our Q&A segment 1. All about the world. So, we have some questions, here, that we gathered in the forums. Chat, feel free to ask some questions, as well. We’re going to cover some questions about New Zealand, some POIs, airports. We’ll go ahead and get started with those. First question I have, here, is related to World Update: New Zealand:

Will this make the Orbx New Zealand mesh redundant or cause any conflicts that we should know about?


Jorg - So, I would say it this way: Holger from Orbx, who was the main geospatial guy: He did both. So, I’m pretty sure that it’ll work. And frankly, I think Orbx always does a really great job with their products. So, I’m not aware that there’s any issues at all. Plus, they added a cool extra thing. So, I don’t predict [that] there’s anything.

Jayne - Awesome. Another question from the forums is:

Will we see any photogrammetry issues that we have seen in the past, such as Canada?


Jayne - And, what are you doing to ensure updated [photogrammetry] looks good and maybe not messier than how it started?

Jorg - Yeah yeah. So, Canada was interesting. It was the first time that we had a previous photogrammetry city from 2013. And then, we had a new scan from 2020 and ‘21. And some instances were actually not as good. The city was much more accurate, again, because it was like, I dunno, ten years later or more. But that can happen. There was some – I took that feedback to heart. I’m very close to these world updates, and it bummed me out to no end that there was some unhappiness. So, we did the CN Tower and (I think) Calgary Tower. We fixed those. There is a big effort, now, going on for bridges. Because I heard this, honestly, since we’ve launched, you know, those of us who fly, that we like to fly under bridges. That the bridges are, essentially, you know, solid. So, we have now identified all of the bridges that need to be fixed. And the team has started working on it. It’s a pretty big backlog going all the way to World Update 1 in Japan.

Jorg - So, to speak about the future: New Zealand, as I said earlier, we have a new team that is doing a really good job editing before we release. And, we are also working on updates to the Canadian cities. For example, Calgary just got finished. We might ship this instantaneously because it’s just essentially sitting on the server, so that will come out very soon. Several other ones have been fixed, and some of the other ones still need work. But there’s teams working on it. But going forward, this won’t happen.

Jayne - Thank you, Jorg! So…

Some POIs released in world updates will disappear at a distance that is sometimes shorter than it should be, even when their screen size is quite large, like Devil’s Tower and Dover Cliffs.


Jayne - Could you make changes to ensure that they don’t pop into view when you get close?

Martial - So this is leading to LOD [level of detail] management. Seb, would you like to talk about that?

Seb - Hello? Yes, so yes, we can look into this. So, I think this is more about maximum display distance for very large objects, rather than exactly how the LODs switch. And yeah, we will look into this. Basically, we have the maximum distance at which we stream anything. If I remember well, it’s a few kilometers, like 50 km or something. But very large objects like a mountain may be popping in at that distance. So, we’ll look into this. Initially, the LOD system was built for cars, buildings, lights, and not for mountains. So, I think that’s why it’s causing issues.

Has any thought been given to customizing or darkening the labels on points of interest to make them more customizable?


Jayne - Such as different colors. The white print can be unreadable, sometimes, in the light sky.

Martial - Yes, so, I think that we’ve seen this bug list. So, we already did some work to make every UI [user interface] customizable (if that’s even English). And especially, we did some effort. So, some people who have some sight problems can tweak the UI. So, I think we should go deeper, and this very part of the UI has not been updated. So, I think we should do that: Update the UI so even the POIs could be tweaked.

Jorg - To me, this is – when we talked about it, Martial and I, it sounds a little bit like…we have a strike team that’s called “G for E”, gaming for everyone, where we make adjustments to font colors, font sizes, and those types of things to make sure everybody can really see and enjoy. Seems like this is related. So, I think this seems like a good idea, and we’ll scope it out.

Jayne - Going back to photogrammetry in chat. Are there any updates –

Is London a part of the photogrammetry that’s being reworked, as previously mentioned?


Jorg - You want me to talk about stuff in the future?! Really? So yeah, so basically, London was purchased by a former company that is not our normal pipeline. And there were, in fact, some issues. We ended up making a bunch of POIs to make it acceptable, but it wasn’t great. It looked sort of like the end of days a little bit. So yeah, we are working on the new London. But I’m not quite sure yet when we’re going to launch it.

Jorg - I saw some other stuff, by the way. I mean, just a general set of statements: When people say, “Hey, how about Poland” or at the very beginning, somebody said something about the Caribbean. The intent is to update the entire world. We are just waiting to get the right data. And that can take time. Sometimes, it’s entangled with some government stuff. But, that’s the intent. So, don’t worry about it. At some point, we’ll do Poland. I’m not quite sure exactly when yet.

Jayne - Okay. Thanks. Alright, we have some airport questions here. I think a lot of these might be for you, Martial. First one is:

A lot of airports in the world are missing taxiway signs. And in other cases, the taxiways that are there are labeled incorrectly.


Jayne - This can make it difficult to accept taxi instructions from ATC [air traffic control] and even more difficult when using a network like VATSIM. Is there something blocking this from being fixed?

Martial - So, what’s blocking is the lack of data. So, in order to get more data, we’re going to introduce the new tool, which is called internally (and I think that would be the final name): World Hub. The World Hub is a tool that allows people to do some editing on the world, especially on airports. So basically, everybody who sees some discrepancies between what we have in the sim and what is intended should be able to do a tweak using this tool. So far, this tool is in test. It’s going to be shared with more than 50 people. And if everything’s going well, it will be shared with many of you.

Jayne - We’re looking forward to the World Hub beta. Next question:

Airport charts will tell you if you have 2-light or 4-light PAPIs and whether they are on the right or left side and what kind of approach lighting they have. This can often be wrong in the sim.


Jayne - Where does MSFS get this data from? Is there anything that can be done to update it globally?

Martial - So also here, there’s a lack of data. Not because the data does not exist. But so far, the only base that we found are based on charts, images: JPEG or PDFs. So it’s super hard for us to extract that information into data that can be used within the sim. So, there’s two solutions, here: If anybody here knows a database that could be provided to us that could help us to get information, we would love to take that. And also, the second solution is the World Hub. As I was saying, we are trying to expose everything regarding airports. And the PAPI lights would be part of that. So, everybody would be able to change any incorrect information we have in the game.

Jayne - Okay. And do you know how the PAPI lights were initially added to the sim?

Martial - Some of this data came from Orbx because they helped us to do the database for this. So, I don’t know how exactly many airports we did using Orbx’s help. I think a lot.

Jorg - About 500. We’re at World Update 12 now. We typically did about 100 per world update. So, you can do the math. But yeah, we need to look at it. I saw the OSM [OpenStreetMap] comment. So thanks for that. That’s serious. We are asking you if you know of databases that can help us, please let us know. We’ve been looking.

Jayne - Yes. And if anyone’s wondering how to get that information, you can post it in the forums or shoot me a DM in the forums and I will see that. Thank you. Alright, next question, here. So:

There are two 100+ vote missing airport reports, MPTO and LTFM, Tocumen and Istanbul. When can we expect these airports to be in the sim?


Jorg - Yeah, Istanbul is a big deal. I was actually unaware of the one in [Central] America. [Martial - Panama.] Is it? Yeah. So, we’ll look into it. Martial, anything?

Martial - No.

Jorg - So, Istanbul…we shipped in 2020. So, I think at the time it was still Atatürk [airport]. And we need to move that over. Right? I mean, it’s a big hub.

Jayne - Next question I have:

Has the team figured out a way to ensure that scenery tears don’t happen at airports?


Jayne - “Scenery tears” meaning little bumps that you can see on the runway, occasionally, that might cause your plane to crash or stop.

Martial - I know that ESSA [Stockholm, Arlanda airport, Sweden] has been taken as an example. This was linked to a bad addition. So I think that will be fixed for Sim Update 12. And for some others, sometimes, it also has to deal with some issues we’re getting, for instance, when we’ve got edges that are not very well welled. So, also, we are working on that. I think on the forums that people were complaining about ESSA, and that should be fixed in Stockholm.

Jayne - So, it seems, it’s all manual and there’s not like a global fix.

Martial - So far, everything is manual, yes.

Jayne - Okay.

Will more handcrafted airports be added, over time, for regions of the world for which world updates have already occurred?


Jorg - Yes.

Is there any news for Central America handcrafted airports and any world update for this region?


Jayne - Kind of already answered that [Jorg - Yes.] in a way.

Jayne - Alright, next question:

Some third-party airports sometimes have huge problems or CTDs [crashes to desktop] after a world update for the region, after it’s been released. Would you ever think about deactivating or removing them from the Marketplace while they’re broken and then reactivating them when they’re fixed?


Jorg - I guess that’s on me! Just to say that, some of the…for example, when Asobo makes airports, or all the airports Asobo made were made under certain memory budgets. And when you talk to Gaya or Orbx or other partners, they also stick to these memory budgets. And some of the payware airports are interesting. You know, when we get a package that’s 18 GB. We’re all looking at it, going like, “Whoa, that’s pretty big!” You know, it’s not going to fit in memory. Or it just brings down the performance on PC. So I think there’s some people that are paying a lot of attention to the SDK and some probably saying, “Hey, we can do better!” But “better” is oftentimes more and “more” is oftentimes not so good. And then it can crash. So, there’s things like that quite frequently, and whether or not we should really turn it off in the Marketplace? It’s a good question. You mean, “turn it off for new purchases” is what you’re really saying? I think it’s a generally fair comment. And I saw stuff like that in the big Marketplace thread this weekend. So yeah. It’s something I’ll talk to the Marketplace team [about]. We just need to talk it through.

Jayne - Definitely.

Will we see a major revision or a v2 to the current Deluxe and Premium Deluxe airports in the future?


Jorg - In the future? Yes. But like, “when” is sort of the question. Yeah, I mean, there is a thought that we’re going to update all those. I’ll get to that a little bit later in a different context. So if you want to pick it up then.

Jayne - Sounds good. Alright, that was a lot of questions, there, all about the world and airports. So, thank you to you three for answering those questions. We’re going to move onto a small section to talk a little bit about Sim Update 12.

Sim Update 12



Jorg - Right! So, Sim Update 12 is targeted for March 14th, right now. We’re not 100% sure we’re going to hit that date. But, the team is trying hard and focused on it. It’s focused on stability, again, so I would say: One of the things I probably didn’t say earlier…one of the things that made me really happy was, the AAU 1 was, basically Working Title added a bunch of stuff, really good, realistic things to the avionics. And guess what happened – it’s one of those things: It added a bunch of memory and a good “kaput”. And so, that triggered an investigation into memory again, and I think it yielded some really great findings by both teams that then collaborated on making it really more stable. And stability is a key objective for any software, including ours. It’s gotten really good numbers now. But I think there’s a little bit more to go. So there’s a strike team at Asobo working on stability.

Jorg - And then, somebody was just asking this earlier: Sim Update 12 will include two new languages, Korean and Turkish. And we also took it upon ourselves to say, “You know, let’s fix all the little niggly things that people have commented or we found from the 40th [Anniversary] content and also from previous world updates.” So, there’s currently a massive effort going on to fixing things and polishing things. I remember a producer at Asobo said something like, “There’s 200 packages” or something, which is a ton. We have a big spreadsheet that gets updated every day. And you know, but that’s cool that that comes in Sim Update 12.

Jorg - And then, somebody else was asking about WASM [WebAssembly]. And WASM is on track. I say that like this [fingers crossed]. It is on track. [Martial - For Xbox.] That is for Xbox, right. That basically, complex planes can now work on Xbox. So, we think that’s Sim Update 12 and then Seb has cool stuff! Look at all that!

Seb - Yeah, so, I mean, there’s – as usual, sim updates have a lot of improvements and fixes. So I’m going over just a few of them. For the flight model, so we did get…so, helicopters are out. We did get a lot of feedback and requests. So, there’s quite a few helicopter additions, so I can list some examples. For example,

  • Turbines can now have a governor.
  • There is support for engine trim. Has been added.
  • There’s a lot of constants that were basically hardcoded have been added to the files for people who make helicopters to be able to change them. So, it’s a big list of improvements on helicopters.
  • Also, we have increased the limit – I think it’s been requested for a while – a maximum number of engines. I think it was four. [Martial - It used to be four.] A lot of people have been asking for 6 or 8. And, well, it’s work. So we said, “Okay. If we do the work, let’s do it just once.” And so, we moved it up to 16. It took some time, so it’s out just now. The reason is that when you have 16 engines, and especially when you’re using the propellers, and the new propeller sim, which has a lot of surfaces for each propeller blade, it just adds a ton of stuff. And so, we had to do optimizations to fit everything in memory. So, that’s done and you can now go up to 16 engines.
  • There was an issue on some planes. The legacy flight model had a bug for a while, now. That’s also going to be fixed.
  • We have had a lot of feedback and did a lot of improvements on gliders. On the planes.

Thermals and turbulence


Seb - And thermals and turbulence, so yes, for the gliders and also just to improve turbulence and thermals, we added a visualization in the previous update that basically allowed people to see what was going on in the air. And so obviously, this triggered a lot of feedback. Turbulence and thermals can’t be seen. So it’s always a bit subjective. Now, there’s images. There’s people who were seeing what was going on. And so, we got a ton of feedback. A ton of very useful feedback. I’m super thankful. Everybody here is super happy about everything we got. Some people actually wrote really, really long comments. We picked about, I would say, maybe 20 different subjects. So, a lot of people had said the same things. And, in Sim Update 12, out of the 20, about ten improvements are coming. The ten others, some things are just redundant or not correct, and some we just can’t do.

Seb - Here’s an image of the Sim Update 12 turbulence. So, here you can see some of the improvements. So, for example, previously, a lot of it comes together with clouds or no clouds. So basically, thermals are generated when hot air goes up, and for whatever reason, air is hot (because the sun heats it up or because there is a parking lot and the ground is very hot). If something heats up the air and [it] goes up, and when the air goes high enough, if it’s humid, it goes to a limit [the dewpoint] where the water condenses, and it creates clouds. So, there’s been a lot of feedback about, “Hey, how high should the thermals go when there’s clouds? When there’s no clouds? Should they go higher than clouds?” And this has been all improved. So here, you can see, on the screen, that thermals, which are caused by heat, but that are not going high enough, don’t cause clouds anymore. So actually, it’s a reverse, right? When there are no clouds, thermals don’t go as high. And every cloud, depending on the density and thickness of the cloud, has a thermal going about as high as the cloud goes high.

Seb - Also, it’s been aligned: Thermals are better aligned with clouds. It’s not always "perfect’’ perfect. And, you need to…one thing that needs to be understood is that this is just a visualization where we basically throw particles in the air and let them move, and to end up where they end up. But it doesn’t mean that the thermal perfectly stops where the particles stop. So, the thermals should be aligned with the cloud. There’s also been improvements on, when it’s raining, the thermals are different. We checked the energy: Total energy is better. So now, there’s just as much air going up as air going down. So, it’s all been improved.

Seb - One important feedback was also maximum thermal. It was limited to about 1500-2000 feet per minute. Problem is that when you were in a big TCU [towering cumulus] and at the limit, it was removing all bumps because you were always limited at 2000. So people found that. We completely removed any limit to a vertical wind, and so, it can go up as high as the real-world thermals. The highest I recorded was 9000 fpm, which is a lot. And so globally, integrating all these fixes further increased turbulence.

Seb - And we know that a lot of people…so, some people say, “Oh, the turbulence is great. They’re super realistic.” And, a lot of people don’t like them because, well, they shake the plane around a lot. So another request we implemented in Sim Update 12 was an option to control how much turbulence you get. So here you can see, basically, with a setting to “Realistic”, this is the thunderstorm preset. I just moved the cloud up, removed the rain, set it to [the] 21st of June. So it’s basically a high-turbulence environment. So you can see the plane shaking quite a bit, flying over the city. You will see a new addition to the Assistance menu in the Piloting [section]. If you go all the way down, you can see “Turbulence”. We have set at three levels. So, “Realistic”, “Medium”, and “Low”. And I’m setting to low, and you will see, the plane doesn’t move at all. So, this does not remove wind gusts or thermals. We need to keep these because otherwise, you can’t fly gliders or you can’t do crosswind landings. It’s a low-pass filter that just removes the…it makes the wind change slower. It’s all more stable. And so, it feels, like, super stable, but you still get all the weather and wind conditions. It just removes the shakiness. It works pretty well. It has been tested thoroughly. So this is also coming.

Jorg - The Sim Update 12 flight is coming soon. There was actually a big discussion today. We’re trying to…it’s the contention between finishing up World Update 12. There’s a couple of things (for example, Hobbiton has a couple of issues) versus this flighting start of Sim Update 12. But it’s within a few weeks. I want to say “days”, but it’s probably a few weeks. But please join. It’s super helpful to have you there and give your feedback. I mean, it was great. AAU 1 was a success because of all that feedback.

Jayne - Yep. Alright, thank you so much! Let’s go ahead and move along to our Famous Flyer 5.

Famous Flyer 5: Antonov An-2


Jorg - Oh…yes! Remember this conversation? I think it took us 2, 2½ years to get a contract with Antonov, and we got it! And…it makes me so happy because the plane has been, honestly, just sitting there, waiting to be released. So let’s look at the…I think there’s a little picture and then we have a teaser.

Jayne - Yep. Here’s the picture, and we will show you a quick teaser right now:

Jayne - Alright! Awesome teaser. But, we have even more, because we have a special guest joining us today! We have Andrei from AT Simulations, who’s been working on the An-2. Welcome! How are you?

Andrei Tsvirenko, ATSimulations


Andrei - I’m a developer from ATSimulations. And actually, we were working together with Asobo Studio and with Microsoft on this project. So, yesterday, Jorg asked me to tell you about what [I think] is interesting about this plane. Why do I love it? And actually, I thought about it…I can say, two things, actually: The main thing is about its spirit. So, it’s like a wide body, wide fuselage bush plane. So, you can land it everywhere. On gravel, on grass, on something like that. And second thing is about, let’s divide it into many, actually: It’s technical. About the decisions they [made] to make it fly so good. So, for example, this screenshot, you may see a lot of switches. And there is a lot of electric stuff there. Maybe you know, but the plane did its first flight in 1947. So, it was quite modern for that time. Electric trimmers, electric flaps, electric stuff may be okay. But, for example, electric cowl flaps since they’re placed on the engine when you need to make it a little bit colder. So, they’re electric, too. Electric trims. All trims are electric. So, electric motors are installed. And rudders, for example. So, even electric radiator shutters in this screenshot. (You may see it’s open.) So, it’s electric, too. And it’s always…for example, it has…maybe the next screenshot shows its quite unique cargo doors. So it’s [an] ingenious decision when they used a regular passenger door as a support for the cargo door. So, I [was] never faced with things like that anywhere else on another aircraft.

Andrei - And one more thing I can tell about is, for example, to make its flying so good, to make it a STOL aircraft, to make its stall speed so small or even unreachable, stall is slats. Slats are the things on the leading edge of the wing, on each wing. And they are automatic. And automatic not because of electronics, but because of physics, because of nature. So, they retract automatically because of wind flow on slow speed that rise automatically to make [the] plane not stall.

Andrei - So, quite unique aircraft. (And alright, this is the cargo door, here. Yep.) So, quite unique aircraft. And actually, we aren’t missing really much in the flights. So, that’s about the model, itself. As about the model, itself, I can say that almost all things are moving, interactive in this cockpit. Except maybe two things, which are about platform limits. Something like that. So yeah, I’m sure that you would be happy flying in this. And finally as Jorg said, Antonov allows us to release it, so we are happy about that.

Jayne - Awesome. Thank you, Andrei! (I’m just going through the last photo here.) Great screenshots. [Andrei - Thank you!] We are thrilled! I know so many people in the community have, of course, been constantly asking about the An-2. So, it’s great to have you on and talking about it. And we’re glad that we can finally release it soon. So, thank you for joining us, Andrei, and for your work here!

Andrei - Thank you! Thank you.

Q&A 2: Missions and Localization


Jayne - Okay, we are moving into our second Q&A, here, about missions. We got some feedback, really really great feedback for missions from the community this month. So, thank you for participating. If you responded in those threads, it’s really great to get a sense of what you’re satisfied with, what you’re dissatisfied with, overall Wishlist items. We got that for both missions and localization this year. So, we’ll go through a couple questions I saw people ask here. Get started on some mission questions.

Jayne - I think this one is for you, Jorg, to hear your thoughts on…they said: “I know MSFS is a simulator and it’s a platform. But I don’t think that means one should mean one should disregard a game element or use systems or methods used in other games.”

I think, missions, bush trips and adventures done in a good and engaging way, could please everyone from beginner to hardcore simmer. I’d love to hear your thoughts on that.


Jorg - Amen. Yeah, I agree. I think we all agree. Honestly, Flight Sim X had some cool stuff. Like if you remember. I still remember the bush mission with the pyramid and all that stuff. Yeah, it’s been part of the franchise. It’s just maybe not…it’s never been quite a big part of the franchise. But, I think the adventure of flight and the purpose of planes is an important thing. So it’s definitely…it’s on our mind, as well. I would just say it that way.

Jorg - By the way, I wanted to…someone was just saying, “When is the An-2 coming?” after like waiting for a year plus. Yeah, March 14. Well, whenever Sim Update 12 comes out. That day. Trust me, Andrei wants to see the creation in your hands. Trust me!

Jorg - But yeah, I think missions are cool. And there’s a lot to be done. How about that?

Jayne - Awesome. And I think, one of the top feedback items we got is:

Seems like people are really loving the variety of missions. But they listed out quite a few number of bugs or different things wrong, like the descriptions could have been better. And they wanted your opinion on if that will be improved in the future.


Martial - Okay, so some of the bugs are linked to the sim, itself, and it’s definitely in our bug base, and this is planned to be fixed. Some others are linked to – like the descriptions – there’s all links to the missions, themselves. I mean, the editing has been done by partners. And so I can’t tell for them.

Jorg - But we can say, remember when I said we are making all kinds of content fixes in Sim Update 12? It’s part of that. Perfect Flight did a bunch of these missions. There’s some other people that made missions, and we are going through it.

Jayne - Okay, fantastic! Someone else says,

I love the introduction of some of the older FS missions, which included voice actors. Will we see more of those types of missions?


Jorg - Yeah, I think so. We are talking about this quite a bit. Whether or not it’s the exact same way with voice, you know, I think there are some fundamental beliefs. Like the FSX missions. They were cool and I’ve played them once. And I didn’t play them until probably like a year or two ago. I think something a little bit more robust would be nice. But yeah, I think it’s all about the joy and adventure of aviation and the jobs in aviation. Those types of things. At some point, we’re going to look at all of this. The stuff’s in our heads.

Jayne - Another question for missions:

Will the community be better involved in the future?


Jayne - (I’m reading through the thread.) Because we made the thread, they believed the answer is probably “yes”, but they say for specific things, it’d be really nice to use resources that are available in the community. There’s so many experienced mission authors.

Jorg - Yes! So, here’s the thing. We’ve actually been looking. So, you know, as you saw, in some ways, there has been a mental shift in, certainly in me – but, I think, in the product in the end – we’re making the sim for the community and also, in part, with the community. That’s how I think about it. When you look at the 40th [Anniversary Edition], that’s exactly what happened. Asobo did a lot of great work on the base sim. Obviously, helicopters, gliders, all those things wouldn’t happen without them. But then, content makers can make cool things. Like, whether it’s the A310 or the Beaver or whatever. Right? So, I feel the exact same way about missions. Call us! We are genuinely interested. I mean, Marco [Martini] from Perfect Flight has been a wonderful partner. But he’s also just one man. And at some point, it limits us quite a bit. We have a few others. But yeah, please. If you’re interested, write back.

Jayne - When it came to localization, we also got some great feedback, there, about some of the translations. Couple of questions we got there:

Will localization get a rework in general, some time in the future?


Jayne - Is this something you are looking to do?

Jorg - So, localization is a topic that comes up all the time, right now. In part because the pipeline we have is a little bit slower than what we really want. What we do is we get all the text, whatever it is, and we send it out to our [localization] partner. And they have translators in-country. We actually don’t – the way it currently works is really crazy – we don’t quite know when the data is coming back. It causes some issues, like when we just said that about World Update 12. We’re sort of in the final moments of finishing everything. Yeah. There is some [localization] stuff missing. We’re all sort of looking at each other like, “Should we ship without it?” And last time, we asked you guys this question about localization and Marketplace, there was a resounding answer and we acted on that. So I’m taking a serious look at, “Do we really want to be in that position?” I would say it this way: Like, a long, long time ago, I was working at EA [Electronic Arts] with US Navy Fighters and stuff. Localization for planes is hard because if the translator has no idea about the tech behind it, they write all kinds of stuff that’s crazy. And so, we need an aviation insider in our localization pipeline and I think that, I think, is bare bones there. Maybe you guys think this as a cop-out, but if you could help us, that’d be awesome. Like, I would love to send texts out prior to release to make sure that they’re accurate. Or if you want, just write us bugs. The thing is this: We don’t speak these languages. And we trust that the translator did their job, and we don’t have a way to verify that. We are not from…like, for example, I don’t speak Portuguese. I don’t know if anybody at Asobo does. So we get some Portuguese. If it’s wrong, mmm, you know? So, think about it that way. We are looking at it because of probably what you feel. Like, we need to get this better. Right? Some stuff is really sub-par. So, please help us. Yeah.

Jayne - And you know, there have been some bugs created in the forums already for some of the [localizations]. So thank you for those who’ve already submitted it. And we appreciate that. Hopefully, we will continue to get more of those, and I think it would be an interesting solution to get some people to flight on the [localization]. That might be interesting.

Famous Flyer 4: Antonov An-225 Mriya


Jayne - Perfect! So, we still have another Q&A in a little bit. But, we have something that I’d love to get to now.

Jorg - Yay!

Jayne - Jorg, I’ll let you start this one off!

Jorg - Yeah, I mean, you know. So, it’s this surprise. Look at me: “Surprise…”. “iniBuilds, what?!” And then, we made a picture.

Jayne - Alright!

Jorg - Err? Recognize that? Yeah. Okay, we have a quick teaser for ya.

Jayne - We do. Here we go!

Jayne - Alright!

Jorg - Now we have to pick, Jayne. We have like a really big surprise and then we have like a smaller surprise. But, do you want to do this now? I think we should.

Jayne - Yeah, let’s go ahead and do it now. Jorg, if you’d like to introduce it, then I’ll play it.

Jorg - Well, so we said this a year ago, it was very upsetting when the plane was destroyed, and I remember saying, “We’re gonna remake this in the digital space. But we need help.” We didn’t have much insight or…you know, I mean, there’s no reference. You couldn’t go scan it. You know, those types of things. So, in all of our efforts to work through everything with Antonov, they’ve been really, really helpful to the degree that…yeah, I think we have a video, maybe, to show. (How do we start this, Jayne? This is improv, folks!) Yeah, there would be a live appearance. There is a live appearance, but, anyways, let’s just maybe roll the video? What do you think?

Jayne - I will just roll the video. Let it speak for itself. [Jorg - Alright!] Here we go:

Captain Dmytro Antonov Video

Jorg - Alright. I don’t know if I’m still on, but…I don’t get jitters that often, you know, when I meet people. I meet plenty of bigshot people. But I talked to him the other day. Man, you know, he’s a legend. I was so honored. So he tried to be here today, but I think he’s currently flying. But, I think we have somebody who can speak to this from the Antonov perspective. (Jayne, do we have that?)

Jayne - We do, yes!

Pavlo Chernyshev, Antonov


Jayne - Welcome, Pavlo! Glad you can join us today!

Pavlo - Hey! My name is Pavlo Chernyshev. And I am here to greet all of you on behalf of Antonov Company. Sadly, Mr. Antonov is, right now, on a mission. But I’m really excited to be welcome in such a warm and enthusiastic community. Antonov Company was not represented in Microsoft [Flight[ Simulator before, mostly because of us being, well, traditionally closed to the Internet community. However, during the war and with all of the help and support by the entire world, we’ve become much more open, and I believe you will see much more surprises in Microsoft Flight Simulator as a result of our new partnership. I hope you will enjoy flying our planes!

Jorg - Awesome. Thank you so much! It’s been a pleasure!

Cameron MacMillan, iniBuilds


Jorg - So, yeah, now, we have somebody from iniBuilds. Cameron, are you there?

Cameron - Oh yeah, I’m here!

Jorg - Awesome!

Cameron - Well, amazing to be able to work on the Antonov 225. I mean, it’s probably one of the most legendary aircraft in the world, and we’ve been able to bring it into the sim. And it’s – as people were just saying about it before, it’s just such a unique experience.

Cameron - So, I’m going to start by going through the flight deck and just trying to give you an idea of scale. The scale of the plane is just unbelievable. So, if I start to pan backwards, here, you can start to see the captain and first officer’s seating position. And that’s, obviously, normally where we would end. We’ve actually got the engineer’s panel, here, which has got a little bit of a kick out. This 90° panel is unique to the 225 as compared to the [An-124] Ruslan. We’ve got some engine instruments here, and we also have a dedicated electrical engineer’s station. This really gives you an idea of the complexity of the aircraft, where this was one person’s job just to run the electrical system, which is pretty amazing.

Cameron - And if I then pan across to this side, we’ve got the navigator’s station, here, and the radio operator. (Often forgotten, as they say, the radio operator. But he’s got an important job!) And if I just pan back to the rear of the aircraft, you start to see, really, the size of this flight deck. It’s just so impressive when you see it like this. We’ve also been able to model this sort of rear passenger area. So, we go back here, and this is where the crew would rest. These are actually beds that pull down in flight. So, this is where you can rest here, and they are kind of reminiscent of quite a lot of cross benches, things like this.

Cameron - And what we’re going to do now is, I’m just going to head downstairs in the aircraft. So, this section of the aircraft is the only part that’s pressurized. So this door, while it looks pretty robust, it’s ‘cause it actually has to hold the pressure back in flight. But, we can actually head down the ladder, just down here, and take a look at the massive cargo area. Now, one thing I tend to do when I’m in here, that’s pretty funny, is I kind of end the camera here. Because it feels like it’s a natural head height because it’s so big. But actually, it’s all the way about here, which is pretty amazing when you just see the scale of this aircraft. It’s pretty unbelievable. [Jayne - That’s incredible!] This floor, here…you might see it’s kind of got, like a – you saw it in the trailer, really, really nicely illustrated. It’s got a funny color. First time I saw it, I was like, “It doesn’t look right. It looks kind of odd.” It’s because this is solid titanium, which is pretty impressive that this whole floor can support up to a payload of 255,000 kilos, which is, by far, the heaviest load taken by any aircraft. It’s almost 100 tons more than the second-highest, which gives you an idea of where we’re at in terms of weight.

Cameron - So, I’m just going to quickly go into the outside view, here. This, I’ve made sure I’ve calibrated, again. This is kind of the head height for the aircraft. So this is what you would see if you walked up to the 225 during a walkaround. And you see, we’ve really really tried to capture a fair bit of the detail, here. You’ve got the pitot tubes, angle of attack, and the Antonov livery on the side, here.

Cameron - It’s got the very unique double bogey at the front. And I know quite a few people say, “What is the point of that?” It’s got two reasons: Number one reason is to spread the weight of the plane. Because all of the airports in the world aren’t designed specifically for the amount of weight. So they have to spread it across. So that’s why they put those here. And it allows the unique kneeling function, which we’ll take a look at shortly. If I just quickly move back here, you can see the three engines. So six total engines in total. These are Motor Sich D-18 engines. Really powerful: 51,000 pounds of thrust each, which, if you try and think of an equivalent, it’s about the same as the [General Electric] CF6 engines. So, in the A310, it’s like having six engines from the A310, plus a bit more. Which…pretty impressive!

Cameron - With the landing gear, here, you’ve got a very unique landing gear from Mriya. These rear three, which were really nicely illustrated in the trailer, as well…they actually steer. So if you move the nosewheel to the right, they will steer to the left in the opposite sense. And this allows [for[ proper handling on the ground. And it was something during development: The first time I tried to taxi the plane, I thought, “It’s really hard to taxi. This doesn’t seem right!” And it’s because in the flight model, we didn’t have the rear wheel steering setup. When you set that up in the flight model, it actually is…it’s not bad. It’s actually pretty maneuverable, to be perfectly honest. For its size, for its pure absolute scale of the airplane. I’m just going to go to the wingtip just to give you an idea of how big this aircraft is. It’s just such a monster! It’s amazing.

Cameron - So, one thing we’re able to keep in the aircraft is, it’s a tribute and also, it’s an important part of the airplane: It’s the data plate. Now, the data plate comes on every single aircraft and every single Antonov aircraft, as well. (I’ll just try and get a little bit closer.). And you can see this shows all the information from the aircraft, there, and it will be put on the new Mriya, and it survived. We’ve replicated it here, on the aircraft, as well.

Cameron - Here, we have the APU. You might notice, I said, “APU”. We have two. Everything on the Antonov is big! There’s more of everything! It’s got more batteries, more engines, more everything. So there’s one near the side, and there’s also a ground level. Which is unusual, but it makes sense because they’re trying to keep the weight as far forward as possible. On the tail, this is very unique: We have the double-boom tail. So basically, rather than having the single fin, we’ve got it on either side like this, and there’s no fin in the middle.

Cameron - I’ll move back around this side, and we’ll shortly hop back in the cockpit, because it’s pretty much the same thing on this side. So let me just hop back in quickly and quickly head back upstairs, which does take a while. (It takes a while to get everywhere!) So I’m just popping my head back through here. The cargo loading, we’re going to look at now. So, I need to turn the power on [for] the aircraft. Here, we’ve got the batteries. Like I say, there’s more of everything in the Antonov. There’s five batteries. So we’re going to put them up into the automatic position. And this connects all five batteries up to the aircraft. Just turn on the transformers. And you can probably start to see why this is someone’s job. It’s pretty complicated! And I’m going to start up the auxiliary power unit [APU] quickly now. So, one thing that we’ve done to try and make this a little bit easier to use for people is, if you’ve noticed, everything is tooltips. It’s obviously going to be in its localized language. And everything that isn’t, like the annunciator lights, you can swap between Russian and English. So you can have it in the original, or you can have it in English. So you can actually see what’s going on with the aircraft.

Cameron - So I’m just going to start that now and head back forward, as well. While that’s happening, I will start to try and show something we have here, which is the payload section. So, we have different payload options that you can load through here. And on the ground configuration tabs, we can pick different things to load. So we have fire trucks, and these are loads that normally the An-124, the -225 took. And if you load this in, it actually adds the real weight into the aircraft, which is pretty cool. And we’ve got helicopters. We’ve got a boiler. This is the heaviest load. This, in itself, is 183,000 kg. (And they carried quite a few of these.)

Cameron - And I’ll start opening the main door now. I’ll just hop quickly back onto the outside. Now, for the cargo door, if I had this in real time, it would take about 6 minutes, which I think would probably be all the time we have! So we have an option in the EFB which does it fast, which is this mode, here. And we have one, as well, that does it in real time. So if you want, you can do it either way. But at the moment, this is the fast way. The sequence goes like this: The forward door comes up. And you can actually see, here, it’s kind of interesting. You see these little – We call them the ears. (I don’t know what they’re actually called.) They kind of poke out to allow the door to swing all the way back like it does here. And then, the next thing we expect to do is these legs will come down. And then the door will drop down.

Cameron - And we’ll load the cargo in. Probably been talking for too long! I can talk about this aircraft for days. So you’ll have to stop me. [Jayne - I’m sure people would listen to you for days to talk about this aircraft!] Yeah, I could go on about this plane! It’s absolutely such an interesting plane to be involved with because, there are these things that, when you look at a Boeing or an Airbus or all of these different aircraft, you think, “Oh yeah, they do it like this.” But in the Antonov, it’s done a bit differently. It doesn’t mean it’s wrong. It’s just different. And then you start to learn, and you go, “That’s interesting. Okay, that does make sense.” And here you go: You hear the hydraulic pump kick on. And now the whole aircraft is starting to tilt forwards, with the main gear coming down at the front. And you can sort of start to see it happening like that, now. And then the ramp will come down shortly. So, like they were saying, you’re four stories up when you’re taxiing this aircraft. But when you’re inside the cockpit, here, you’re actually enclosed completely by the nose, which is kind of interesting. We’re expecting this to sort of stop shortly and then the ramp should start to come down. But there are plenty of…sorry, go ahead?

Jayne - Someone was asking about the sound. It has some awesome sound but you just can’t hear it in today’s presentation.

Cameron - Oh sorry, yeah. The sounds, we’ve taken them a lot from real references, as well. So you can…there’s door sounds. There’s hydraulic pump sounds. There’s one for the APUs. Everything is in there. And it’s all, you know, really nice, authentic recordings, as well.

Jayne - Awesome!

Cameron - So, now you can see the ramp going up. And we can quickly hop back up into the cockpit. (If I do that now, and just move my camera back down again.) So I’ll quickly choose a payload. So let’s, for example, let’s take the train. And if we now pop onto the outside view, you can actually see it. (If I load the cargo now, sorry. The fire trucks.) I think I may have done something slightly wrong here. Sorry about that! Let me just choose the payloads. (Load this up, here.)

Jayne - We’re seeing a couple great questions. We’ll answer those as soon as…

Cameron - Yeah, no, go ahead! Ask the questions now. I’ll go through those.

Someone’s wondering, just like how there was an enhanced edition for the A310, if there is going to be an enhanced edition for the An-225.


Cameron - From what I understand, no, it’s going to be a single package, which is what you see here. So this is what we will be offering across every platform.

Jayne - Okay, nice.

Cameron - I think that’s probably about it, really. I can try and set this to a bit of a nighttime. And we will just show you some of the cockpit ambience we have here, which is really, really great. Because it’s such a large working space, you can have a lamp here. And I absolutely love putting up the desk lamp here. And you can just sit there. Look back and…it’s like a mobile office. It’s great!

Jayne - That is phenomenal. Cameron, thank you so much for this tour! [Cameron - No worries!] Really incredible job by you and the iniBuilds team.

Jorg - Well, before you take off, Cameron, do you want to tell the story about you meeting Antonov?

Cameron - Yes, we were able to go down and meet Dmytro. And we were able to show them the aircraft, as well. So we were able to get some feedback from what they thought. You know, seeing the aircraft. And they really like the aircraft, because it’s one of those things where, to see it again in the sim is something else, as well. And it’s always great to be able to get feedback from the people. There’s only a handful of people that have flown this in real life. We were able to meet them. Get interactions with them and get feedback from them directly, which was…I mean, as you said before, Jorg, he’s a legend. And meeting a legend is always a great day.

Jorg - Alright. And then,

Do the fans work?


Cameron - The fans! That is a great question. And they do. So, let’s have a look. It’s got a very satisfying animation, if I might add. So, the fan control is up here. So, this is the fan on the captain’s side. And I’ll just make it a bit brighter so we can actually see it kind of kick on a little bit better. (There we go.) The fans do work, and you can turn them around. [Jayne - So cool! Great addition!] Yeah! There we go.

Jorg - Alright, well, super! Thank you so much! [Cameron - Thank you very much!] Both of you – Antonov – for helping. It’s been great. And you know, we’re getting close.



Jorg - So, there are a couple of questions that I wanted to address. Most about date and price and those types of things. So when all this happened, about a year ago…remember we did a Marketplace sale where some of the proceeds went to help a specific organization in Ukraine to help with families and kids, in that particular case? In this case, we were determined to help do something for Mriya, which means either rebuild the Mriya or commemorate the memory of the Mriya. And the way we’re going to do this is we’re planning on giving the money…so, it’s a payware plane. I should say it’s $20 or $19.90 or whatever…something like that. And we will take zero money. We will send everything to Ukraine. The plan is to send it to Antonov, and Antonov will commit itself to use that money for the rebuilding of the Mriya. That is the current plan. It’s not 100% locked. Like, the paperwork is not exactly dry, you know, the ink and stuff like that. But that’s the intent and that would make me super proud because that is – we always say, digital preservation is great and all. In this case, we can actually do something about the real world. So let’s just do it.

Jayne - Fantastic. Thank you so much!

Release date and WASM support


Jorg - Oh yeah, and then ship date, yeah! Ship date! Yeah, so somebody smart said something about WASM. That is true. So, this plane has WASM in it, which puts it in an interesting situation. So, we want to launch the plane on the 1-year anniversary of its destruction in the real world, which is February 27th. But, it’s WASM and it’s a package. So therefore, the Xbox version, unfortunately, won’t be available until March four–ah! Sim Update 12. Whenever exactly it ships. So, we’re sort of like, “■■■■, should we wait for the Xbox thing or should we just ship it on the PC?” I feel like we should honor it by releasing it on the day, on the 27th, and then we will get the Xbox version when Sim Update 12 is done. That’s the current plan.

Jayne - Okay, that’s good to know. Thanks for clarifying that.

Updated Roadmap


Jayne - Appreciate it, so after that announcement, then, we have our updated roadmap here.

Jorg - Oh yeah, so I just filled out some stuff. You will see…it’s interesting. So when we met in November, we had the ATR [42/72-600] in March and that has been moved to April simply because, almost unexpectedly, we get to have the Antonov 2 for March. And it fits really well into that. And it’s time. So, you see, we have now, the World Updates, obviously, coming. The Antonov moving into the first slot, which is March 14th. The ATR moved into the next slot, which will be the next world update in April, by the way. And then, the Mriya is coming, I think, February 27. But I’ll read the chat after all this is done to see what you guys thought.

Jayne - Okay, perfect.

Q&A 3: Marketplace


Jayne - And with that, we will do our final Q&A. It’s been a great stream! So feel free to ask questions. But to start it off, we are going to talk a little bit about the feedback that’s been coming in the past week or so on socials and on the forums about the Marketplace and the Marketplace partnership program, et cetera. So, Jorg, I’ll pass it on to you to talk about it.

Jorg - Oh, there’s no questions? Okay! Well, so I got three different emails…it certainly worked. The thread was effective in that I got multiple emails from multiple community people saying, “Hey, you need to read this,” so I spent a good amount of time reading everything, including some of the old threads. And, I just wanted to talk about it today. But I think would be best, Jayne, if you have some…I’m not sure if we have any questions. I mean, I can just rattle on…

Jayne - Yeah! I have some questions, and I’m sure chat does, too. So, feel free to put those in the chat, as well. So, first question here, based on the feedback. Someone said,

Will there be an upgraded way to communicate to someone’s status in the Marketplace partner program – say if it’s been several months or years without knowing if they did the right thing – if they’ll ever be accepted or not?


Jorg - Yeah, I read that. I read something about transparency which hit home immediately at home, because we’re really trying to be as transparent as possible. (I mean, with the exception of maybe like, some surprises, simply trying to surprise and delight sometimes. And with the Antonov, for example, it was not all super clear that we’re gonna get it finished by February 27, and all that.) But in general, I think we should have a policy of being as transparent as possible. So, I saw some things like that in the thread where people say, “Hey, can you show us where things are?” And I think that’s completely fair. So, this is something…so, we spent some time…the manager of the Marketplace, and the business manager, and I spent a little bit of time this week. We’re going to spend some more time going through the specifics and what we can really do, but I like the idea to be transparent. I don’t know if we have to get permission from all the, you know, people that submit stuff. But I mean, we’ll work through it. But anyways, trust me when I say, transparency is super important to me. So, I will try. We’ll try.

Jayne - Cool. We’re excited to see updates on that throughout the year. Another question from the thread was,

Can an independent developer hope to ever be accepted into the Marketplace?


Jorg - Yeah, there’s no question. It doesn’t really go by size at all. It has nothing to do with that.

Jayne - Yeah. In a similar vein,

Were there any kinds of products that you look for when accepting new partners, as opposed to other types?


Jorg - So the truth is, there is a little bit. I have this huge spreadsheet. So let’s talk about the process. Giuseppe [Nelva] knows this. So I read Giuseppe’s posts every day. (Giuseppe now at TechRaptor, by the way, if you don’t follow him.) But…love that man. He’s super, super engaged. And he helps a ton because he’s, I have, sort of, this list of everybody’s Facebook and blah blah blah. And I spend a bunch of time looking at what people are actually doing. Sometimes they ping me. But Giuseppe does an awesome job summarizing this. And I also look at MSFSAddons, FSElite and a bunch of other sites, and out of that comes an aggregate total: What have people talked about, in any shape or form? And then, some people don’t talk about it publicly at all and they just send us stuff.

Jorg - And, by the way, I put this up every week in the development update thingy. I always say “unannounced stuff”. I don’t know if you ever look at this, but there’s a section under under each category that says “unannounced” where I list the things where there’s just no public mention of it yet. But they get a heads up that it’s coming. Anyway, so there’s this thing with now 5000 items long or some such thing. And I do look for things like, for example, when Seb and team were working on helicopters. Yep, I got, I mean, for a few years, got pinged by people who make helicopters. And they always said the same thing: “Hey, when is helicopter support really coming to Flight Sim?” So I gave some of those folks a heads up as early as I could. And then, did we try to get those helicopters into the Marketplace? Yes. Or like approve those people’s applications? Yes. Because it was appropriate and timely. So there’s a little bit of a prioritization going on: Aircraft, obviously very important, and then comes you know, other things after that. We have a…sort of a list of things that we think the community is looking for, and we do pay attention to that. So there’s some priority.

Jayne - Okay, awesome.

What does the future of the Marketplace look like to you?


Jorg - I think it needs to be the best Marketplace that everybody can trust. For all that, some of you might know we have a little bit of a hacking problem in [the] flight sim community. You know, there’s some stuff floating around. And that’s mostly a bummer for the third-party developers because they put their heart and soul into these things and things get taken. So, I think our store needs to be:
    a. Very customer-friendly.
    b. Very third party friendly.
So, communication needs to be great. And it needs to just be a great service. Which means – there are a bunch of things that I saw on the thread that certainly all – they bother me as much as it bothers you. Trust me. Like when I think the updates aren’t as fast as they could be, I ask questions. “Why is this?” Like, what can we do about it? And we are trying to get that all faster, quite frankly. ‘Cause I think it’s one thing…I think some of you in the chat certainly talked about this. If you’re a developer and you’re working on a plane and you just put it on your website because you have an update that you just compiled the night before, yeah, that’s a very fast way. I don’t think we’ll ever be able to really compete with that. I used to make PC games in the ‘90s and stuff. Yeah, that was always the easiest way. But you could reach everybody, but it’s a completely legit way to release your product. For us, it just takes at least a few days.

Jorg - Now, in our case, it’s sometimes a few weeks, and sometimes even more, and that is not okay. So, you go really, really clean this up. And we have some plans. So, we talked about this backlog a million times, and I know nobody wants to hear this: I would say the only place where we’re really hiring on our side, so the Microsoft side, is for the Marketplace. So, we’re hiring developers, we’re hiring additional PMs [project managers]. We hired ourselves more help. But in this case, I think, the overwhelming amount of content is just overwhelming. You know, we’re at 3000 addons or something, and we have taken it upon ourselves, so far, to test everything on our own. And that is…I mean, just think about it: 3000 things. You know, there’s only that many humans that we can throw at this. So, I think we are really seriously thinking about basically opening it up so developers can test it themselves in a particular safe method. The team has been working on that, and I think that will help a ton. And we will literally just release it, like, and if something doesn’t work, I think the knock-on effect is, you can certainly write us an email and complain about it. But, we are putting the onus on the developer to make sure that their product works right. So, this is in discussion and sort of in the works. But I think that’s the only path forward. Because I think about the future, like: 10000 things in the store? It becomes untenable. It’s not like Amazon testing everything that’s on Amazon. It’s not profitable. But we tried. We tried, and I think to some degree, it delayed things.

Jorg - It’s sort of like last time we talked, I asked, “Hey, should we wait for [localization]?” You all said no. And we stopped doing that right away. And some planes…I read something about the [Got Friends] Wilga that came in. Frankly, the developer sent me a free version, and I was flying it. And I was like, “God, why is this thing not in the store?” And it was a package that came in, I think, December 7th. And we had just made that switch to the “let’s not wait for [localization].” But I think that now – and it’s a great plane, by the way – that plane is coming now. But that won’t happen again. So [localization] is no longer a thing we’re waiting for. [Jayne - Excellent.] And now, it’s all about testing time.

Jayne - Okay. Another question I saw in chat:

Once WASM is implemented on Xbox, what do you expect? How long do you think it’ll take to see some of those WASM products being added to the Marketplace?


Jorg - It’s a big priority. So we have a priority stack, by the way. So, how do we make release priorities? We can release roughly 100 things a week in a good week with the team we have. The first thing that we release is updates to existing aircraft. The second thing is updates to existing “anything else”. Because aircraft, you know, sometimes there’s actual real functionality bugs or people have been waiting for something. It seems there’s sort of an urgency that I sense. So we’re like, “Okay, let’s get the aircraft out first.” Then comes the updates to the other products, then comes the aircraft, and after that, kind of, comes everything else. And I read a lot about the quality. People say, “Hey, why don’t you prioritize very-well known developers that put out high-quality things?” And as some people pointed out, even in the chat, it’s kind of a slippery slope, you know? Because, all of a sudden, you render judgment on somebody else’s work? I will spend a few nights to sleep over this, honestly, and talk to the team. And we all need to really…do we really want to change that? Maybe…maybe. But again, threads like the one that you did help, because I get the perspective. As I said, it’s like reading a good book. Right? You’re like, “Okay, it’s interesting thoughts.” So, please share your thoughts.

Jayne - We’ll do a couple more questions. I saw one about,

Where is prioritization for those who want to join the program but offer high-quality freeware that PC players get?


Jorg - Oh, I want, I mean, I’ve said that forever that I really want freeware. It’s sort of like, on top of the little hill that we have to work through. There’s more things. It’s probably embedded in the same conversation about what’s really important to the community. Because that’s really what the store is for. It’s for y’all. That’s why we made it. You know, there’s lots of people, I mean, there’s many of you that buy, and you could, where you always buy it from: The websites of the developer and whatnot. That’s cool. This was for the people that are not that deep in the hobby or they’re new. It’s just convenient. I think you get the Xbox thing for free, which is cool. So it’s supposed to be a service for the community. And it needs to be. So when we get feedback that people are not really all that happy with either the layout or it’s hard to find stuff or this or the other, yep, that’s the same to me as somebody saying, you know, the thermals aren’t quite right. It’s very much related. It’s part of the product and it needs to be great.

Is there a future in the Marketplace where we will improve the rating system, whether that’s written or some additional sections for rating different areas of the product?


Jayne - Is that something you’re…?

Jorg - Yeah, so we just talked to PlayFab this morning, which is sort of the backend we’re using for some of this. They’re working on some features that I think would be useful. In general, do we want to let people type in text and potentially review bomb stuff? You know, there’s some thoughts on that. In another thread, I read that people thought the Xbox Store is really cool. So, there’s things to be learned, so we reached out there. I do think that we need, I mean, across the board, we need to make improvements. There is no other way to say it. Across the board. Process, discoverability, security. You know, all of these things are true. But like, the thing that actually stuck with me the most is that people thought we’re not listening, and that is totally untrue. I can tell ya, there’s a bunch of people working on the store. It’s complicated. And it sort of…it gets to us, right? When people don’t like what they see. And it’s like, okay, you want to go fix it right away. But, we’re as dedicated to making the store great as we’re making the sim great.

Jayne - Last question:

Are you able to comment on the current conversation about the current queue of releases? What’s being done to unclog the pipeline and regain the trust of your partners?


Jorg - Yeah, we’re hiring. I mean, as I said, that’s one brute force solution going through this. I mean, I have the list in front of me what’s currently on the backlog. It’s a, you know, it’s a little bit…I can tell you what it is: 776 total products, I want to be totally transparent. I’ll read it: 84 aircraft, 22 are new on PC, 34 are new on Xbox, 15 updates on PC, 13 updates on Xbox. And it goes through every single category. And those are the things we focus on. We said we have a priority list of releases. That’s probably debatable. If you have things to say to the debate, please let me know. Write it down somewhere. I’ll read it. But it goes, existing aircraft first, because people already bought it, and they deserve to get their updates as fast as possible. Then, existing other products, because they already bought it. New airplanes because people are oftentimes (maybe that’s too broad a statement), but oftentimes people are really jazzed. (I remember the Wilga. I was talking to a bunch of friends about it.) So I think that’s next, and then comes new non-aircraft products. If that’s somehow not what you think is right, just go write some comments. Either here, because I’ll always always read the log at the end of our sessions, or put it in the chat on the forums.

Closing Remarks


Jayne - Perfect! Alright, Jorg, thank you for being so transparent and answering those questions about the Marketplace. We appreciate it. And to all our guests that we had on stream, thank you for joining us. Chat, thank you for being here. We had a great time. Seb and Martial, thank you for answering questions. Seb, for sharing about thermals and turbulence. Martial, for answering so many questions about airports. We will be back soon. But for now, we hope you enjoy your week, and please enjoy the Aircraft and Avionics Update 1. We’ll be around on this stream on Friday, of course, for our Community Fly-In Friday at 11:00 am Pacific. We will see you there. Have a great day everyone, great night. See you later!

Seb/Martial - Bye!

Jorg - Bye y’all! Let’s have a great 2023. Whee!

Jayne - Bye!