Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 is an unbelievably dense and big piece of software. The latest version of the simulator is more than just a ‘game”. It requires that players have a bit of knowledge around the game’s airplanes. This can be daunting without any assistance. So, there are a few Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 tips and tricks to make the game experience easier for beginners.
In this article, we’ve rounded up some of the tips and tricks in the game to guide you as you learn the game and figure out how to become a pilot. Read on and find out how to make your gaming experience enjoyable as you navigate the game.
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 Tips
Don’t skip MSFS 2020 training sessions
No one likes reading manuals or sitting through a boring tutorial and being told how to fly! But this is a very important part in the world of Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020. It may be very tempting to skip the training sessions and explore the continents but don’t. If you’re new to the game, dedicate some time to your aviation skills.
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 comes with essential training sessions aimed at assisting first-time flyers. These sessions are available under the “Flight Training” title on the game’s main menu. This eight-part flight training ‘boot camp’ familiarizes novices to the game, giving you a step-by-step guide on the intricacies of flying.
Choose your airplane wisely
Microsoft Flight Simulator features up to 30 aircraft, depending on the version you’re playing. All these aircraft vary in size, range, instruments, and even control. Remember the point of the game is to ‘imitate’ how the airplane behaves in real life. So, the various aircraft will also behave differently in the game. While the largest, commercial aircraft such as the Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner may be tempting to have a try, it’s also the toughest aircraft to pilot for if you’re a beginner.
Aircraft such as Cessna 152 and Cessna 172 G1000 provides an easier and more compact flying experience when you’re starting. They work at minimal speeds, easier to handle and the instruments are not too daunting. They are the perfect way to learn how to be a pilot.
As you gradually learn the smaller aircraft, you can now then start with the bigger planes. You also get to learn the different aircraft classes and engine types and how each is different.
Don’t be shy to have an assist
As we said, Microsoft Flight Simulator is a huge game. There are also many keyboard controls to master and it will be a bit of time to get the hang of everything. If you’re stuck with any component on Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020, there are included player assist features. These are accessible via the game’s menu. The dedicated “Assistance” menu will give you specific options for all the components and controls you might need assistance with. This will greatly provide you a helping hand in real-time. The assists are grouped into three main presets.
There is “All assists” which is mainly for new players, the almost-realistic “True to life” preset for experienced players, and “Middle-ground”, which bridges the gap. Take time to find out what you want to control and turn on assistance for other controls.
Start your Flights in Midair
Nothing beats being able to take off from the runway, but this can be scary if you’re starting in Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020. You can start in midair for your first few flights. To start in midair, click anywhere on the World Map that appears beside an airport, select and click on “set as departure.” This will commence your flight journey about 1,500 ft high up in the sky, which is safe cruising speed. Consider it a ‘cheat code’: no need to worry about taking off.
Create A Flight Plan
Some of Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 best features are not accessible if you don’t haven’t created a flight plan. Once you’re comfortable with taking off and landing, it’s time to explore the game. Pick an airport and start doing laps. From your World Map, select the departure and arrival airports and start flying. Pick short distances and gradually increase as you become more accustomed.
Use Active Pause for Beautiful Screenshots
Another neat feature in Microsoft Flight Simulator 20 is called ‘Active Pause’. With this feature, you can stop your aircraft in midair and change elements such as the time of day, to the type of weather that you’re experiencing. It’s also a great technique to get screenshots. You’ll find the Active Pause option in the pause menu. When you use this option, just be careful when using it at low flight speeds or low altitudes. It tends to send you into a horrible stall once you resume your flight.
Learn How to Land an Airliner
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 comes with only 1 flight lesson that teaches you how to land a single, small aircraft. However, the game has multiple, bigger aircraft. So how do you get around to learning how to land a bigger airliner? The game has a neat feature called Landing Path. You will find this feature in the pause menu, under the Assistance tab, inside the navigation menu.
To practice landing, a commercial aircraft like the jumbo jet, select a departure and an arrival airport that are of a decent size. Airports like Chicago’s O’Hare and Midway are good enough. While in the game, open the Travel To tab again to move yourself to the Approach or Final phase of your flight plan. As you close with the airport, Flight Simulator will put up a series of glowing brackets to help guide you in.
You Can Download Regions to Save Bandwidth
If you have a slow Internet connection, go to the options menu. Navigate to General and select Manual cache. This will let you select certain regions of the game to download, saving you from having to stream the data while you play. Note that some of these regions need a lot of space. If you have limited storage space the game will allow you to specify which regions are downloaded and in what quality.
Dual Screen Support
There are a lot of mini-windows when you’re flying. These can include tower communications, the radar map, camera settings, and many more. It’s quite easy to have a cluttered main window with all this information. Luckily all of these mini-windows can be popped out and dragged onto another screen if you have a dual-screen setup.
Get A Clearer View of The Animals in The Game
For players who might be more interested in seeing giraffes, black bears elephants, or any other animals during their flights, there’s an easy way to show all this. When you’re on the world map, just navigate to the search bar and type “Fauna.” A list will appear complete with all available options.
You Can Jump Forward Your Flights
At the top of your main window, you can open the Travel To tab which shows you the planned flight path. If you don’t enjoy the cruising stages of a flight, you can ‘fast forward’ those and travel skip time. You can even choose whether or not the game will jump forward into simulated time or to keep the current live conditions.
You Can Skip the Checklists & Radio Interactions
In-game AI Control gives you the chance to let your copilot handle the pre-flight checklists and all exchanges with the control tower. We highly recommend turning on your assist option if you’re not interested in those parts of the game. It will significantly cut down the amount of time you’re on the ground.
We hope you will find these tips and tricks useful as you play the game. Which other MSFS 2020 tips and tricks do you know and use? Lets us know in the comments.