Hype Performance Group continues to innovate and explore exciting new ways to enjoy Microsoft Flight Simulator. After pioneering helicopters in the platform, functional rocket launchers, and medical emergency operations, the team recently launched a firefighter variant of its H145 helicopter, enabling MSFS pilots to put out fires in the scenery with a functional bambi bucket!
HPG announced the Action Pack Expansion for the H145 earlier this year, promising five new variants with very specific and realistic purposes. The HEMS variant was the first to be released, now followed by the Firefighter variant, which again comes with some unique features specially designed to bring some of the adrenaline of fighting wildfires to the world of Microsoft Flight Simulator.
This new Firefighter variant of the H145 comes with a couple of special features that make firefighting possible in MSFS.
The first is a functional bambi bucket, the distinctive bucket suspended below the helicopter, used to drop water over active fires.
The second feature is a Scenario Editor that allows simmers to place fires anywhere in the world, along with pools of water that can be used to fill the helicopter’s bucket (but you can also use any body of water present in the scenery). It’s an ingenious way to create your own firefighting missions, with realistic fire animations that disappear once you successfully drop water on top of them!
As would be expected, the Firefighter variant of the H145 also comes with a couple of unique liveries, along with other changes in the aircraft’s model such as new switches and panels in the cockpit to accommodate the new capabilities, new effects (fire, smoke, water), and sounds.
If you’re a fan of helicopters, the H145 continues to be one of the most fun and immersive options currently available, especially now with the addition of these action-oriented variants. The whole package is, however, a bit expensive, since you’ll have to get both the H145 Base Pack (currently priced at $42.99) plus the Action Pack Expansion ($35.00) to enjoy the new features.
H145 Firefighter Variant:
- Bambi bucket simulation with functional pick up and drop
- 3D Crew: 2 pilots, hoist operator, hoist crew
- Functional hoist with multiple interactive animations, mechanical system management and the ability drop and collect the crew
- High Intensity Search Light with steering, dim, zoom, filters and more (TRAKKA800)
- 2 new firefighter liveries
- Helionix integration as well as a friendly user interface added to the tablet to operate the new capabilities
- Switches and panels have been added to the Overhead Panel and Center Console to allow new capabilities
- New weight elements (Bambi bucket, Hoist) have dynamic impact on the flight model
- New dedicated effects (fire, smoke, water drop)
- New dedicated sounds
- More options: Short Skids/Long Skids, Emergency Floats, Skid skis for cold climate
Later this year we’ll get the 40th Anniversary Edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator, which will finally introduce native support for helicopters in the sim. Hopefully, this will also mean that developers will get new tools to improve their existing and future projects, possibly taking advantage of numerous flight model improvements dedicated to rotorcraft. Stay tuned for more details about that in the coming months!