Photo via Microsoft.
Photo via Microsoft.

Microsoft Flight Simulator is making a comeback — but Microsoft won’t be doing any of the work to make it happen.

Dovetail Games, makers of the Train Simulator franchise, has signed a global licensing deal with Microsoft for Flight Simulator and plans on releasing a new game in 2015 based on Microsoft’s popular flight sim.

In addition, UK-based Dovetail Games will also re-distribute the popular Microsoft Flight Simulator X: Gold Edition — the final installment of the Flight Simulator series released eight years ago — on Valve’s Steam digital distribution platform later this year.

“I am delighted to be working in partnership with Microsoft as part of this agreement,” Dovetail Games CEO Paul Jackson said in a statement. “We are thrilled to be exploring new flight simulation opportunities using Microsoft’s technology, and look forward to using our extensive expertise of Steam publishing to successfully bring Microsoft Flight Simulator X: Steam Edition to a broad new audience on the Steam platform.”

Kevin Perry, an executive producer at Microsoft, called Dovetail Games the “obvious choice for us to work with.”

“We respect their approach in terms of delivering premium quality simulation games and look forward to seeing their vision of the next chapter in flight simulations unfold,” Perry said in a statement.

Microsoft Flight Simulator was one of the most popular and well-known franchises for the PC, but was discontinued in 2009. In 2012, Microsoft developed a free-to-play follow-up title called Microsoft Flight, but the game didn’t catch on with a wide audience and was shut down within six months after launch.

Flight, which will end support for its multiplayer servers later this year, was criticized heavily by fans of Microsoft Flight Simulator, which said it fell short of a true simulation and didn’t live up to the legacy of Flight Sim.

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Comments

  • Clinton H Davis

    Yeah, I hope they learn from “flight’s” mistakes. I don’t want “free to play”. I don’t want “online only”. I don’t want to pay for each little chunk of the map. I don’t want to buy airplanes that don’t have cockpits.
    I want the whole world and enough aircraft to enjoy it in the initial purchase.
    I want what we have always gotten, plus updated graphics and interface options. Give us that, and we’ll buy it.

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  • Jeff

    @Clinton +1
    Couldn’t agree more! Enough with the “in app purchase” model. It makes games fragmented and sucks for consumers.

    • carbonated_turtle

      I can understand maybe wanting to make a couple bucks if they’re going to release a free game, but I remember the price they were asking for the DLC was ridiculous. Something like 30 bucks for a new plane and a few new missions in a small area.

  • Jeff

    What about MS’s Combat Flight Simulator? I really enjoyed both the European CFS and the Pacific CFS. Too bad it dwindled as well.

    • guest

      CFS was considered a failure. Sales paled in comparison to FS.

    • SortingHat

      I have Flight Sim X which one time worked on Win 7 but now doesn’t work anymore but what is Combat Sim? How is it different/similar to Flight Sim?

  • Umbrella Pogo

    The closing down of the ACES studio in 2009 was totally idiotic – thankfully nearly all of the executives responsible for that decision have been flushed from MS.

    I’d vote to bring back Combat Flight Simulator, also.

    • SortingHat

      In Microsoft’s minds they had to because of smartphones and tablets. That’s when the switch to 64 bit computers had gone widespread and companies didn’t want to waste time rewriting software for computers.

      Since then Microsoft has been slowly going over to phone only hence the Windows 8 and Windows 10 looks which in Win 10 the start menu is back but you still have the annoying Metro UI next to it with no way to control it.

      Microsoft also recently bought up Nokia and a couple years ago fired all their PC Technicians replacing them with smart phone people most likely from Nokia since the company is fully bought out now.

      Microsoft is essentially a smart phone company now and have given computer users the finger.

      If this company reviving the Flight Sim were smart they would tap into the Linux community and make it also for Linux Mint users which Mint is very similar to Windows XP in many ways and in some ways enchances it such as being able to switch screens on the fly.

      If you are a programmer or love to edit that is a very handy ability to have which Microsoft stole from Linux by calling it *Continum* or some stupid name like that.

  • http://pfoct.blogspot.com/ James Knauer

    In the meantime, X Plane 10 has developed quite a following.

    • http://www.matthewshobe.com/ mshobe

      No kidding. Thriving third party ecosystem for mods, terrain, aircraft, you-name-it. Exactly what Microsoft had done a decent (albeit aloof) job of encouraging through the 2000s for MSFS – until they killed the product line. Very interesting to see this legacy rebooted. (Bruce Artwick is smiling somewhere, I hope.)

      • http://pfoct.blogspot.com/ James Knauer

        Completely different airfoil simulation, too. It’s what they use in flight sims for pilot trainers. The TrainSim people are awesome, though, so the product is in good hands. Be well, Bruce!

  • Teebor

    Man, m$ has been on QUITE a roll with bad decisions….

    • Lata

      Negative vote just because of “$”, unless you like to work for free.

  • Lata

    Please, use GPU this time, don’t want to buy an Intel Xeon just to run FSX.

  • SortingHat

    I wasn’t surprised one tiny bit that Microsoft Flight would be scrapped though I am surprised it actually lasted six full weeks. Those of us who criticed the game were poo pooed by the *Pro* crowd but it wounded up we were right on all accounts.

    Microsoft at this point was no longer controlled by Bill Gates and are now like a rudder less ship not knowing or caring where they are going and have slowly morphed into being a telephone company hence Windows 8 being a phone on you’re PC and now they have bought Nokia mobile phone company which isn’t going to go over well.

    Windows 10 is basically Win 7 all over again so you are paying of Windows 7 twice.

  • SortingHat

    The reason they do it that way and this company if they make it *which there hasn’t been any news since last year* will have to do the *in app purchase* model because that’s how it is on smartphones and tablets.

    Since 2012 the industry has been doing everything possible to kill the PC Industry which is why the flight sim business is dead in the water because you can’t do serious simulators on a phone or tablet. Even if a phone or tablet ever had the memory to do it the screen size and the lack of a mouse/flight stick will always be a major issue.

    In short phones and tablets can’t handle much beyond Farm Ville or facebook style game play mechanics which makes Atari 2500 seems like fun.

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