SimWorks Studios provides update on the B-52’s development for MSFS

It was more than a year ago that SimWorks Studios revealed they were working on a surprising new aircraft for Microsoft Flight Simulator. The team, primarily known for their work on smaller general aviation airplanes, has also been deep into the development of the mighty B-52 Stratofortress. This week, they’ve come out of the development bunker to reveal further details about this project and its current status.

The update reveals that, although development has been progressing slowly, it has been consistent, with major strides made in modeling the iconic aircraft’s diverse configurations. Simmers will be able to choose from these options when the package finally becomes available.

Exterior and Configurations

At this stage, SimWorks Studios has nearly completed the exterior models for the B-52, showcasing an impressive array of parts that reflect the aircraft’s extensive operational history.

Among these are two distinct tail fin sizes, three nose variations (including the snub nose for models A-F, a long nose for G and H models, and a long nose equipped with EVS add-ons for G and H), and four different tail gun configurations.

The meticulous attention to detail extends to the wings, with options for early B-52 models featuring ailerons and later G/H models without, including wing root strake options that denote aircraft designated as nuclear weapon carriers.

Engine Variants and Cockpit Layouts

The update also highlights the inclusion of three engine types, from the early B-52B through E models, the B-52F/G, and the B-52H, ensuring that each variant offers a unique flying experience reflective of its real-world counterpart.

The development effort extends into the cockpit, where two main layouts are being recreated: the “old” layout for models B-52A through F, featuring a larger rear cockpit area, and the “new” layout for G and H models, which introduces a smaller space with significant changes in the positioning of the Electronic Warfare Officer (EWO) and the gunner.

Currently, the focus is on building the B-52C/D cockpit, with plans to move on to the E/F and finally the G/H cockpits.

Release Strategy and Historical Significance

Looking ahead, the development team has outlined a tentative release strategy that includes two packages. The first package will feature early B-52 models (B through F), with turbojet engines, aileron-equipped wings, and similar cockpit layouts. This package will also pay homage to historical variants like NASA’s “Balls 8” and “Diamond Lil,” the latter being one of the two B-52s credited with an air-to-air kill in Vietnam.

The second package will focus on the B-52G and H models, distinguished by their lack of ailerons and revamped cockpit arrangements. This package will focus on the differences between the G and H models’ engines and explore historical paint schemes, including the B-52H (61-0023) known for landing without a rudder. Additionally, the inclusion of pre- and post-EVS variants promises to cover the aircraft’s evolution from 1959 through the early 90s.

As you can see, SimWorks Studios is deeply committed to providing military aviation enthusiasts with a very comprehensive B-52 package. This aircraft marks a significant departure from their usual MSFS offerings, such as the PC-12 and the Kodiak 100, which have been prime examples of the team’s work. It will certainly be fascinating to see how they fare with this project. Stay tuned for more updates in the coming months!