Microsoft Flight Simulator is the oldest gaming franchise in Microsoft’s history, but the Seattle company has other IPs that have garnered millions of fans from all across the world. The Halo universe is another one of those examples, with a highly successful series of action games that continues to be popular today.
Microsoft seems keen to capitalize on all these products and the people using them, as we can now see in Microsoft Flight Simulator with the release of a fictional aircraft from the Halo universe. The D77-TC Pelican is a highly versatile dropship used to quickly deliver and collect cargo and troops from operation theatres. Obviously, this applies only to the futuristic world of Halo, in the 26th century, so we’re looking at a crossover between the fictional world of the sci-fi title and the more realistic universe of Microsoft Flight Simulator.
Hardcore simmers will likely dismiss the Pelican as another “toy” for the Xbox crowd. However, we should all collectively note that anyone can enjoy MSFS how they see fit (and the high-quality A320, 737, 146, or C310R that we recently got are as true-to-life as they can get). I’d argue that attracting casual crowds with “spaceships” from other popular titles and then keeping them in MSFS for its realism and authenticity can only increase the appeal of our hobby to a greater audience!
The Pelican does provide some unique characteristics that MSFS simmers looking to have some fun will enjoy. For starters, it features a unique flight model that can switch modes between hovering and a full-fledged forward propulsion system. In that regard, it’s not much different from the likes of the F-35 Lightning II or the Harrier.
The Pelican, however, has been designed to be launched from orbit, droppings tens of thousands of feet into the surface before returning back to its station in space. While the version that has now been launched in MSFS doesn’t appear to quite match the theoretical capabilities of the “real” aircraft, simmers should be able to take it to great heights, well above the standard altitude ceilings where most civilian and even military aircraft operate.
An orbiting space station from where we could take off and launch on a mission to Earth would certainly be very cool, but that doesn’t seem possible at this moment in MSFS. Hopefully, it will be something that can be implemented in the future, as we seem to be getting closer and closer to leaving the gravitational force of our planet even in Microsoft Flight Simulator, now that we have the Maverick-inspired Darkstar and the Pelican as well.
For now, Microsoft/Asobo recreated a nicely detailed model of the Pelican for MSFS, with good interior modeling (including functional cargo doors) and proper sci-fi sounds to match! The Pelican for MSFS also offers custom avionics, inspired by the Halo Universe, and a total of 13 liveries.
The Pelican is available now as a free download in the Marketplace, a special gift that arrived during the Xbox and Bethesda showcase, which also brought some exciting news for later this year. Check the complete details about what’s coming in November with the free 40th Anniversary Edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator, including a selection of incredible new airplanes like the iniBuilds A310, the Aeroplane Heaven DC-3, among others.