Night lighting issues still present - The community solutions

That’s interesting, because every time I have watched a Dev Q&A stream, I felt more desperate afterwards.

Thousands of people use the forum to report and discuss bugs, add to the wishlist, and spend hours on Dev Q&A questions, and Microsoft and Asobo decide that they cannot spend more than an hour with the community.

The only issues they ever appear to address in some technical detail seem to be issues of the Asobo graphics engine.

They seem to avoid answering questions about the flaws, bugs and broken promises regarding the simulation of the aircraft (simulation of aircraft has, historically, been the focus of previous flight simulators, so it doesn’t seem to be out of line to expect it to be at least of some limited importance in MFS as well).

They talk about how Live Weather is supposed to work, while users who actually spend time in the sim are quite aware that it still has major issues from backend (e.g. 22503KT) to rendering (e.g. precipitation effects almost never trigger when they should).

They swoon about how great it is “to work with the community”, which means Working Title and Fly By Wire, and “with devs”, which means Aerosoft, and how they’re going to grant access to beta builds to an exclusive club (instead of making it an open beta), while they’re breaking the excellent mods for e.g. the DA62 and the G36 with almost every update (not to mention aircraft they sell on the in-game Marketplace), while the SDK is still not feature-complete, and while its documentation is lacking in many respects (according to established and reputable devs).

So, yeah, I guess even when you watch the Dev Q&A streams, your mileage may vary.


The filter called “sketch” under “Special FX”.
I think by default it’s at zero (slider at leftmost position)… If you move the slide to the right, it’ll “grey wash” the entire screen, but the effect is light orbs appear a bit smaller. Play around and see…

But of course after that you wouldn’t want your entire screen to look grey, so you’d add more filters like playing with temperature, shadow, gamma, brightness etc to darken the screen so it won’t look grey.

This is a very limited “temporary band aid”, as what I want is to have only the orbs to get smaller, while everything else pretty much stays the same. With Freestyle filters, you will change the whole screen unfortunately.

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To be fair, the people in the Q&A session are the head of Microsoft Flight Simulator, the CEO of Asobo, and the Executive Producer of Microsoft Flight Simulator. Those guys are busy doing actual work, and I think it is awesome that we get a little bit of direct access to them at all. We have several others from Microsoft and Asobo, like Jayne, who spend a ton of time with the community every single day.

That does not mean I disagree with some of your other points.

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Management doing actual work? They are the pointy-haired bosses of the MFS world!

And while I have complained about the incompetence of Asobo’s devs, when they broke something that they shouldn’t have been able to break, or when they implemented something in an utterly stupid way, I know that the fault always lies with management.

The three PHBs agreed to release MFS in the state it was at launch.

The three PHBs managed to release patch after patch that is perceived as “yet another fail”, just by letting highly visible regressions slip through which upset so many people that actual progress is hardly noticed (e.g. in the GA world, they made the mixture behave a bit more realistically in the last patch, but everybody is just talking about how sluggish the AP is now).

Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that the three PHBs made MFS happen. I’m not complaining because I want MFS to fail, I’m complaining because I want to love it. The visuals of MFS spoiled me for other (far superior) sims. That’s how shallow I am.


I looked at the huge lights of the night city, which are the same size to the horizon. Not atmospheric. Asobo is developing a simulator for the Xbox. Unfortunately, he considers us to be testers. This explains the transformation of the simulator into GTA with each patch. This is my subjective opinion. If I’m wrong, I’m sorry.

This thread is intended to discuss night-lighting, not the internal development and management structures. Please stay on topic. If you wish to engage in off-topic discussions with a specific user, consider sending them a private message.


I launched a Zendesk… I play on 1080p and my light orbs look square-ish… Not only that, if you pause and take screen shot, you can see by zooming into your screen shot that the light orbs “image” seems round but limited to appear within a “square box”… But orbs seem to be bigger than the square box, so some parts of the orbs got cut off!

Before update-5, the light orbs were (as far as I remember) normal… They were round, and not as bright as post update-5. But after update-5, the orbs turn square-ish and brighter.

Unsure whether this happens only on 1080p. I watched some Youtube videos about night lighting in Las Vegas, and they don’t have the square-ish orbs (the video have options up to 4k)! Also found out that if you put the sim to pause (press ESC) then turn off “lens correction”, orbs appear smaller (not back to round shape, but they were smaller). But as soon as you move your view around, or unpause the sim, the shape goes back to the square…

I have render scaling set at 100… Tried to set it up to 200 but no changes to the shape of the orbs.
I think this is why those orbs look too big for me (and other people posted the same thing in this thread as well).

@GrilledChippie Lights are also rendering the same size and not just in 1K as demonstrated with the embossed version of a real photo, XP11, FS2020 u3 and FS2020 u7. However and at least, there are not squarish in 4K:

Night lighting issues still in update #7 - The community solutions

Have you tried different AA modes?
Some testing I did earlier (see this post) showed squarish lamps using 4k and DLSS. And some resolutions together with higher render scale gave me that phenomenon too, but I saw you used 100, so it’s got to be something else.
What’s your monitors max resolution? I’ve gotten blocky lamps running “middle resolutions” not evenly dividable with max resolution.

Do you have the possibility to post some screenshots?

My monitor’s max resolution is 1920 x 1080. On MSFS that’s also the max resolution I got…
The blocky light orbs are similar to your above post… But weird since last time i played, i saw “normal” distant aircraft lights at night (just two bright dots with a bit of halos, one of them blinking)… Then am not sure whether that plane flew towards me, or away from me… the plane light turned to blocky as well.

I’m on TAA as well.

I’m also running XP11 and as far as I remember, night lights aren’t blocky there. They’re normal with halo on them.

Screen shot below. If you download and zoom to lower left area, you can see what seems to be orb shapes got cut off.

Second screen shot… Street lights are square-ish:

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I had a look and your lights do look weird indeed, especially in the corners, making me think of lens-distortions like spherical aberration / coma.
I’m currently running with post processing Sharpening and Film Grain disabled in MSFS (UserCfg.opt) so this might give me less squarish lamps?
(I have no before/after shots of this, as I changed those values some while ago to lessen cloud pixelation.)

So I had a look at the Lens Correction option in graphics, and noticed I definitely get better lamps having lens correction switched OFF (which I’ve always done, so not sure if this is a new or old issue)
So I’m not sure if this will help you, not knowing your Lens Correction settings. But I hope it will help some.

Here’s the test scene:

The following are crops from bottom right corner , center, bottom left corner.
The following comparison might be hard to spot at native scale, but bigger enlargements can be found below.

Lens correction OFF

Lens correction ON

The difference might not be big in the browser so I included bigger enlargements from the same crops.
As you can see, 3x3 lamps grow to 4x4 lamps, which is a pretty big difference at 1080p.

Lens correction ON takes the rendered scene, and applies a “anti lens-distortion filter” , and applying a resampling effect with so many point light sources, there will be bloating during the stretch.
3x3 pixel lamps grows to 4x4 pixels, which is quite a lot given the resolution.



I definitely recommend those running at 1080p to set your Lens Correction to OFF for this reason. It blurs the whole scene slightly, making all the lamps appear bigger.


@Grinde81 This is interesting! I didn’t noticed the lens correction shader was bulging so much the center when I tried in 4K.

This setting is doing what you’d do in a RAW photo development when trying to correct a pincushion distortion due to the lens. I doubt there is any actual distortion in the rendered image and in fact this setting is more a “cool” post process effect you’d find in games, except it has some use if I’m not mistaken for people using wide monitors.

However because this effect is “shrinking” the outermost pixels inward and is “enlarging” the innermost pixels outward, it will resample the image (most likely bilinear filtering for speed) and this is why sharp dots are becoming fuzzy.

You can actually see and play with this type of shader live in your browser here:
Fisheye / antifisheye (

(click the middle of the image and move left/right).

PS: having said this it makes me wondering whether the great variability of comments in night lighting, and the other “visually” related problems are not sometimes due to people using this setting which is inherently degrading the legibility (bilinear filtering) especially in 1K.

Glad that you’ve mentioned lens correction… Yes I tried that also and weird thing is… You know we have to pause the game to go to the menu (press ESC) to change the setting… In the setting, my lens correction was ON, then after I switched it OFF, apply & save, then resume game, the lights do turns smaller a bit!

But, as soon as I unpause, or even move my camera/view around while still in pause, the lights then turns back into those bulgy squares! Weird!

Also tried to exit Flight simulator after turning lens correction off, then restart the game… No change, still the same.
So for me, the noticeable difference lens correction does… is that when its ON, then the very distant lights became blurry. If it’s OFF, then distant lights are clearer. But the square-ish lights remain. I am not sure if others with 1080p monitor experience the same thing or not.

ps. I have NVIDIA control panel on… But I’ve deleted the NVIDIA 3D profile for MSFS, and no effect to the square lights.

Edit: We don’t have to “pause” the game to change settings, but for this purpose, I did “active pause” it to compare the lights. After lens correction was set to off, the lights look slightly smaller while the game was on pause (and the screen not moved). As soon as I look around, or unpause the game, light orbs turn back to being square-ish (and back to it’s original bloated size).

Nice tip, even though I already had it turned off. With lens correction on it seems it brings the whole image closer to you. The orbs do seem bigger and more blurry too.

Lens Correction Off

Lens Correction On

Detail: 1st on, 2nd off

The sharpening and film grain were disabled because you’ve seen a difference in night lighting ?
I also have them disabled because I’ve had obvious jaggies (1920x1080)
I sharpen the image now with freestyle, the only filter I now use.

please do try this, it is normal they are becoming bigger because it is what lens correction is supposed to be doing:

I believe this is a consequence of TAA. It is an AA algorithm using per-pixel motion vector to determining the AA. If you’re static, it won’t be as effective but as soon as you’re moving it can compute a per-pixel motion vector and therefore can do AA. It would then seem TAA is causing these artifacts.

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@Grinde81, just read through this disagreement with SeaW0lfBis and just wanted to commend you for how gracious and patient you were. You went above and beyond. If more on this forum – and the internet in general – engaged with others as you did here, the world would surely be a nicer place. Kudos.


Hmmmm… So you reckon as of now, there’s not really much I can do about this, but wait for Asobo to do something about this in future update?

Already took off sharpening and film grain in my usercfg.opt but night lights still look the same for me (bloated square-ish)…
Hopefully Asobo is aware of this since I put it up on Zendesk and will do their magic.

It’s obvious that there is not a real tweak we can work around to get back the Night Lighting at release.

We just have to wait for and force Asobo to roll it back in one of the upcoming updates.

Or it might be rolled back as an interim hotfix.

It must not be a big deal for Asobo to give us the release settings for Night Lighting.

You’re absolutely right. I was the one who side tracked it, and I apologize.


Update: I know what caused the bloated square-ish orbs for me… @CptLucky8 was right, it was the TAA!

I disabled all antialiasing and guess what? All light orbs appeared smaller, night scenery becomes sharper and I could see all lights (including the ones from windows etc) pretty sharp. The more in-game antialiasing I enabled, the more the prominent the square orbs become, with TAA being the worst.

However of course without antialiasing, the movement of the scenery during flight would be awful with all the aliasing etc.

Is this a normal consequence for TAA, or I should Zendesk this one as a bug? I would love to fly with TAA but keep the smaller orbs size!