Update, January 4th – We reached out to the developers to gather more information about this project. Check the bottom of this post for more details, including pricing and some very cool photos of the team!
Just as we wrap this crazy year of 2021 and throw it out the window, an exciting new project has emerged to bring joy to many enthusiasts of Soviet-era jet fighters: the legendary MiG-21 will soon come to Microsoft Flight Simulator, with ambitious plans from the developer, Golden Key Studio, to deliver a very detailed and authentic recreation of this supersonic machine.
The MiG-21Bis “Fishbed” was introduced in 1959 and, impressively, it’s still in service today with several air forces across the world. It’s actually the most-produced supersonic jet aircraft ever, with more than 11.000 units built. It was the first Soviet aircraft to successfully play the role of a fighter and an interceptor, able to reach speeds of up to Mach 2.1.
Golden Key Studio first worked on this aircraft for P3D, where it was well-received and praised for its stunning visuals and realism. GKS is now bringing this project to MSFS, looking to raise the bar with a “collectible” model of the MiG-21Bis, taking advantage of the modern graphics engine in MSFS to create an aircraft full of details.
GKS promises to release a highly detailed model of the MiG-21Bis with authentic flight dynamics, based on a military training simulator. Furthermore, the package will come with a realistic autopilot system and even a drag chute!
This project will be the result of two years of development and will come in two versions: Standard and Extended. The plan is to release the aircraft early in 2022 on the MSFS Marketplace and in the usual third-party vendors.
It’s unclear right now what will be the differences between the Standard and the Extended versions, or when the release date will actually take place. We also don’t know anything yet about pricing, but we reached out to the developer and will let you know more information once we can.
In the meantime, enjoy the extensive number of screenshots that show the impressive external and internal models, as well as the variety of liveries. More are available on the developer’s website. There’s also a cool teaser video showing the “Fishbed” in action in MSFS. Watch it below!
Collectible model of the LEGENDARY MiG-21Bis created with an unprecedented level of detail and realism.
- High quality external and internal models using PBR technology (Physically-Based Rendering)
- Realistic flight model based on the MiG-21Bis military training simulator.
- Accurate Pylons, Racks & Stores Weight and Drag
- Realistic Engine Characteristics
- Authentic Autopilot System
- Detailed Landing Gear Structural Model
- Accurate DRAG CHUTE Dynamics
- And much more…
Love Soviet-era aircraft? We can’t wait to try the Tupolev Tu-134, also under development for MSFS and likely to come out also in 2022.
Thanks Sean for the tip!
JANUARY 4th – After our initial report above, we managed to get some very interesting information about this project from the developers.
GKS is a small team of aviation enthusiasts from Kyiv, Ukraine (a core team of 3 developers). They build add-ons for flight simulation as a hobby, but they have extensive experience in video game development and currently work on some famous games.
A very cool fact about this team is that the members collaborate with the Ukrainian Youth Space Center, where they maintain real training cockpits, which include the MiG-21Bis. They also get the chance to talk and get help from real MiG-21 pilots. See the very cool photos below!
We don’t often see images of what goes behind the development of flight simulation products, so it’s great to see this from GKS, who kindly shared these images with us. Having this close proximity to a real aircraft is surely a great step towards realism and authenticity!
GKS also told us that all systems will be simulated, except military radar and weapons. Their goal is to implement these systems to a level of realism that matches the real MiG-21 flight manual. Since they have very close access to a real training cockpit of the aircraft, along with all the documentation and the feedback of real pilots, the developers are confident that they can create a truly authentic product for MSFS.
Finally, the MiG-21 will come with 11 of the most popular liveries, but more will be made in the future. As for pricing, it’s not yet determined, but should be around €30 for the Basic version and €40 for the Extended.