Aerosoft has been working for a very long time on its highly-anticipated simulation of the Airbus A330 for Microsoft Flight Simulator. The wide-body airliner is one of the most interesting projects currently in development for the simulator, despite some apprehension from a spectrum of simmers who have some doubts about the developer’s goals with the project.
The level of depth and detail that will feature in the Aerosoft A330 is still to be determined, but it’s safe to say that it won’t be up to the high realism of the PMDG 737 or the Fenix A320. Mathijs Kok, Project Manager at Aerosoft, has continuously said that they aim to deliver the experience of an airline pilot’s day-to-day job, rather than simulating the aircraft itself. As a result, they focus more on daily procedures, like opening the flight deck door, rather than rare events like N1 spiking.
“I simply have no idea what a ‘study level’ aircraft is. Honestly. No idea. I see it used a lot by marketing departments and YouTubers but I never see a real pilot calling any DLC ‘study level’.” He said this week in the company’s official forums. He added that even if they spent another three years on the A330, he would not call it ‘study level.’ Kok goes as far as advising those looking for a simulation of actual pilot training simulators to look elsewhere.
Mathijs also provided further insights into the current stage of the project, both on the forums and on the Blu EXperience podcast, where he shared observations about the challenges the team has faced, as well as the unique features and compatibility of the upcoming release.
Mathijs revealed that the team has been working diligently to strike a balance between incorporating exciting new features and ensuring that the project stays on schedule. To prevent “feature creep,” they have focused on prioritizing essential elements and resisting the temptation to add extra features that could cause significant delays in the development process.
One of the most notable aspects of the A330 project is its cross-platform compatibility. The airplane will be available on both PC and Xbox, as well as in the Xbox Cloud Gaming platform, from the moment it is released. This compatibility has required the development team to optimize the airplane’s performance, ensuring that it runs smoothly across different platforms with varying levels of graphical capabilities.
The development team has utilized state-of-the-art technology and techniques to create a highly-detailed and well-optimised airplane model. The artists who work on this project have relied on close collaboration with Asobo to create detailed and accurate representations of the aircraft, further fuelled by thousands of reference photographs that were taken during on-aircraft visits.
As the project moves closer to its release, Aerosoft is preparing to send the product to external beta testers, many of whom are real airline pilots. The team eagerly awaits feedback from these testers, which will help them set a final release date for the highly anticipated A330 airplane.
On that topic, Mathijs has replied to a user that the launch is expected “in the coming months”, sometime within the next 1 to 4 months, although with no guarantees. Take that with a grain of salt, of course, especially seeing how by this time last year Kok was pretty much sure the A330 would be out by the end of 2022.
Finally, we’ve got a fresh new set of images that represent three key areas of the product: the highly detailed instrument panel, the impressively-comprehensive EFB, and the interactive user manual that should be an important resource for simmers to get acquainted with the aircraft.
As always, we’ll continue to follow the development of this project very closely and bring you all the latest news updates from Aerosoft regarding the A330 project for Microsoft Flight Simulator!