Microsoft Flight Simulator Xtra330Source: Microsoft

If any game seeks to raise the bar for all video game experiences, it's Microsoft Flight Simulator. This incredibly ambitious title combines the power of modern gaming PCs with Microsoft's Azure cloud technology and 2 petabytes of worldly information to create a gorgeous and realistic depiction of our planet. With it, you can fly anywhere at any time. This return to form is already proving to be an amazing accomplishment on PC, with critical and consumer acclaim backing up the game's lofty promises.

Microsoft Flight Simulator is slated to make the jump to consoles, however, by using the power behind Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. Microsoft hasn't always been the most forthcoming about Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox, so we've compiled all the news, trailers, and information in one place.

Here's everything you need to know about Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox Series X|S.

Jump to:

A catalog of games

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

All your gaming needs, in one subscription

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. Microsoft Flight Simulator is already included in Xbox Game Pass for PC, and will be launch into Xbox Game Pass for consoles on day one.

What is Microsoft Flight Simulator for Xbox Series X|S?

Microsoft Flight Simulator CAP 10Source: Microsoft

Microsoft Flight Simulator is already here for PC, and released across the globe on Aug. 18, 2020, marking the long-awaited return for Microsoft's flight sim series. Microsoft Flight Simulator is one of the most ambitious games in recent history, utilizing the power of the cloud to map out the real world in real-time. This allows players to fly across environments in more detail and beauty than ever before. For such a project to come to PC is a no-brainer, but Microsoft Flight Simulator was promised to be released on Xbox down the road as well.

Microsoft Flight Simulator may play and look differently on Xbox Series X|S versus the full-fledged PC version with the recommended PC requirements, but it looks like Microsoft may be poised to deliver killer visuals without noticeable compromise on their flagship consoles, with the power and modern features of Xbox Series X|S capable of delivering better-than-ever gaming experiences. MSFS will also feature better support for controllers and new tutorials and game modes for more casual players.

If you have great internet, Xbox players will also be able to play Microsoft Flight Simulator without its "offline mode", saving valuable storage space.

It should be mentioned that Microsoft Flight Simulator is not a game built around a riveting story or fantasy world, and doesn't aim to excite with intense gameplay or combat. Instead, players are encouraged to take their time, soak in the sights, and explore the vast and breathtakingly gorgeous world at their own pace. For casual players and veteran flight sim connoisseurs alike, Microsoft Flight Simulator seeks to offer a relaxing and fulfilling gaming experience. Pretty soon, Xbox players will also be able to join in the fun.

Microsoft Flight Simulator is being developed by Asobo Studio in partnership with Xbox Game Studios.

If you want the full rundown of exactly what to expect from MSFS on Xbox, be sure to read our full Xbox Series X|S Microsoft Flight Simulator review, which highlights how the game's arrival on consoles isn't accompanied by major compromises. We're also keeping track of all the known bugs and issues in Microsoft Flight Simulator for Xbox.

When is the release date for Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox?

Microsoft Flight SimulatorSource: Microsoft

  • Microsoft Flight Simulator for Xbox released on July 27, 2021

Towards the end of 2020, we finally received further confirmation that Microsoft Flight Simulator was heading to Xbox consoles by Summer 2021. Unfortunately, this announcement was immediately followed by months of relative silence from Microsoft and Xbox Game Studios, with fans eagerly awaiting further information on Microsoft Flight Simulator's planned descent onto Xbox consoles.

During the Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase at E3 2021, it finally happened: Microsoft Flight Simulator for Xbox officially releases on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox Game Pass for consoles on July 27, 2021. Microsoft Flight Simulator is, of course, already available on PC and Xbox Game Pass for PC.

At the moment, there's no word on Microsoft Flight Simulator also coming to Xbox Cloud Gaming (xCloud), so don't expect that support at launch. However, Microsoft recently upgraded Xbox Cloud Gaming with custom Xbox Series X hardware, so Microsoft Flight Simulator could expand to even more platforms in the future! Xbox Cloud Gaming may also be how Microsoft Flight Simulator one day lands on older Xbox One consoles.

Versions & pricing

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 Daher Socata TBM 930Source: Microsoft

Microsoft Flight Simulator has three different editions to choose from, and those editions are entirely identical across Xbox and PC. MSFS should support Xbox Play Anywhere, so you'll only need to purchase the game once from the Microsoft Store to own it across both platforms. Microsoft Flight Simulator is also available through Xbox Game Pass on both platforms, but you'll only have access to the base game and not the additional content included with other editions.

The full Microsoft Flight Simulator Marketplace is included, even on Xbox, so you'll be able to purchase additional content, mods, and DLC in-game from Microsoft and community creators.

The editions available to purchase for Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox include:

  • Microsoft Flight Simulator Standard Edition. The Standard Edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator includes only the base game, with no additional preorder bonuses or perks included. This is the version of the game that will be included with Xbox Game Pass on day one.
  • Microsoft Flight Simulator Deluxe Edition. The Deluxe Edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator includes the base game, as well as the Deluxe Upgrade, which includes five additional meticulously crafted airplanes and airports, including:
    • Diamond Aircraft DA40-TDI
    • Diamond Aircraft DV20
    • Textron Aviation Beechcraft Baron G58
    • Textron Aviation Cessna 152 Aerobat
    • Textron Aviation Cessna 172 Skyhawk
    • Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (Netherlands)
    • Cairo International Airport (Egypt)
    • Cape Town International Airport (South Africa)
    • O'Hare International Airport (USA)
    • Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport (Spain)
  • Microsoft Flight Simulator Premium Deluxe Edition. Finally, the Premium Deluxe Edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator includes the base game and the Premium Deluxe Upgrade, which includes all the aircraft and airports from the Deluxe Edition, plus an additional five of each, including:
    • Diamond Aircraft DA40-TDI
    • Diamond Aircraft DV20
    • Textron Aviation Beechcraft Baron G58
    • Textron Aviation Cessna 152 Aerobat
    • Textron Aviation Cessna 172 Skyhawk
    • Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner
    • Cirrus Aircraft SR22
    • Pipistrel Virus SW 121
    • Textron Aviation Cessna Citation Longitude
    • Zlin Aviation Shock Ultra
    • Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (Netherlands)
    • Cairo International Airport (Egypt)
    • Cape Town International Airport (South Africa)
    • O'Hare International Airport (USA)
    • Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport (Spain)
    • Denver International Airport (USA)
    • Dubai International Airport (United Arab Emirates)
    • Frankfurt Airport (Germany)
    • Heathrow Airport (United Kingdom)
    • San Francisco International Airport (USA)

If you're interested in purchasing Microsoft Flight Simulator, you can find all of the links below.

Xbox and PC

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 Box Art

Microsoft Flight Simulator

The ultimate flying experience

Microsoft Flight Simulator is the premier flight simulator experience, featuring a 1:1 rendition of the globe rendered with beautiful detail. While Microsoft Flight Simulator launched exclusively on powerful gaming PCs, the best flight sim around is now available on Xbox Series X|S, PC, and Xbox Game Pass.

Where can I watch the trailers for Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox?

If you want to savor every moment of hype leading up to the launch of Microsoft Flight Simulator, or you're still on the fence about whether or not to commit to Microsoft's most ambitious title and its Xbox port, here's all the trailers for Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox in one place.

The announcement

Gameplay & release date

Xbox Series X gameplay

Xbox Series S gameplay

How will every platform be supported by Microsoft Flight Simulator?

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 Diamond DA 40Source: Microsoft

If the rest of this article didn't make it clear, Microsoft Flight Simulator is coming to Xbox Series X|S consoles this summer. However, Microsoft Flight Simulator is already available on PC and constantly pushes the boundaries for visuals in video games. There was also talk in the past that Microsoft Flight Simulator would eventually head to Xbox One consoles. So what exactly is going on, and how does Microsoft Flight Simulator support these platforms? We have everything you need to know right here.

Xbox Series X|S

Xbox Series S And Series XSource: Windows Central

The big news for Microsoft Flight Simulator is its intent to land on Xbox Series X|S consoles, so that's where we'll start. While there were initial concerns that Microsoft Flight Simulator would provide a massively compromised experience on Xbox Series X|S versus the full-fledged PC version, early views at the game have somewhat alleviated those fears. Asobo Studio looks set to make Microsoft Flight Simulator the premier option in its genre, regardless of where players intend to fly.

Here's everything you need to know about Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox:

  • Performance targets. We don't know every detail about the performance targets Microsoft Flight Simulator is striving for on Xbox Series X and S, but we do know that the game will target 30 FPS on both consoles, with higher numbers possible when combined with a Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) display.
    • 30 FPS being the performance target for this game may disappoint users expecting 60 FPS to be the standard on Xbox Series X|S, but Microsoft Flight Simulator is an outlier, with gameplay that rarely calls for higher framerates and visuals that make those framerates difficult even for high-end gaming PCs.
    • We don't know with 100% certainty what resolutions Microsoft Flight Simulator will run at on Xbox Series X|S, but the gameplay trailer was captured in 4K (and looked frankly incredible) on Xbox Series X. We expect 4K to be the target on Xbox Series X (with possible a 1440p "performance" mode), while Xbox Series S will run at a more modest 1080p to 1440p.
  • Stunning visuals. It was never in doubt that Microsoft Flight Simulator would look gorgeous regardless of where it was being played, but the gameplay footage showed off during the Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase blew our expectations out of the water by claiming to be recorded in real-time 4K on Xbox Series X. It's clear Asobo Studio has worked hard to deliver as close to the full PC experience they could with the power of Microsoft's most advanced consoles.
  • New accessory support. Microsoft Flight Simulator is expected to play nice with controllers and large displays when it lands on Xbox Series X|S, but that may not be enough for true flight sim aficionados looking to up the ante. Fortunately, we know that the small list of supported Xbox accessories for Microsoft Flight Simulator is expanding in the near future, indicating that more options for flight sticks and other accessories are inbound. Recently, Xbox detailed some of these new MSFS accessories.
  • Potential future VR support. I'm not going to spend a ton of time entertaining the possibility that Xbox Series X|S will one day support VR, Microsoft Flight Simulator included, but we do know that references to VR on Xbox Series X was found before the console's launch in Microsoft Flight Simulator, indicating that the thought was at least there at one point. There's absolutely no indication this will ever come to fruition, and Microsoft has shown no public signs of supporting VR on Xbox Series X|S, but it's at least worth mentioning this tidbit of info.
  • Xbox Game Pass inclusion. It's already been mentioned several times throughout this post, but it's worth mentioning one more time. Microsoft Flight Simulator will be included July 27, 2021, through Xbox Game Pass for Xbox, meaning millions of subscribers will be able to jump into the vast world this game has built the moment it launches for Microsoft's latest consoles.
  • Possible other enhancements and improvements. We still have a lot to learn about how Microsoft Flight Simulator will work on Xbox Series X|S, but we have to imagine that Asobo Studio has done its best to ensure the game offers a complete and satisfying experience even for casual players only using a controller. This may mean updated UI and controls, and improvements to how the game scales to larger displays. We do know that Microsoft Flight Simulator now includes significantly more tutorials than it did at launch, in preparation for new players.

PC

Razer BlackWidow MiniSource: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

The focus here may be Microsoft Flight Simulator's imminent arrival on Xbox Series X|S, but you can't talk about the game without mentioning its prodigal arrival on gaming PCs with groundbreaking visuals and a freshly high bar set for flight sims everywhere. Of course, there have been some concerns that Microsoft's insistence on porting Microsoft Flight Simulator to Xbox consoles may negatively affect the main game on PC.

Here's everything you need to know about Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox and how it affects PC:

  • The same updates and expansions. Microsoft Flight Simulator has enjoyed a plethora of post-launch updates and fresh content, which shouldn't be adversely affected by the game's arrival on Xbox consoles. Expansions and world updates will still come to PC, since both games share the same incredible cloud-powered world. Even the editions are identical across platforms.
  • Performance improvements. Rather than "holding back" Microsoft Flight Simulator, Asobo Studio has confessed that their work on Microsoft Flight Simulator for Xbox has improved performance on PC, with further levels of optimization providing nothing but benefits for both platforms. Granted, this was from when Microsoft Flight Simulator was still believed to be heading to Xbox One consoles, but the benefits are there nonetheless.
  • Identical experiences. Honestly, there's not a whole lot more to write about here. Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox and PC should provide near-identical experiences, apart from the natural differences that occur between the platforms. Microsoft Flight Simulator on PC is one of the best games on the platform, and that won't change when the game releases on Xbox.

Xbox One

Xbox One X, Xbox One SSource: Matt Brown / Windows Central

When Microsoft Flight Simulator was initially revealed to be heading to Xbox consoles at some point in the distant future, it was confirmed at the time that Xbox One support was also in the cards. However, the game's release date reveal and subsequent trailers, along with supporting information and announcements, has officially closed the case: Microsoft Flight Simulator is not coming to Xbox One consoles.

To be fair, this isn't terribly surprising. Microsoft Flight Simulator can bring even the heftiest gaming PCs to their knees, so imagining the graphically intensive showcase running on the aging Xbox One hardware was amusing at best, difficult at worst. That's not to say Microsoft Flight Simulator hasn't still benefitted from the experiment, or that all hope is lost for Xbox One owners holding on to their last-gen consoles.

Microsoft Flight Simulator's optimizations across platforms reportedly improved due to Asobo Studio's efforts to port the game to Xbox One, as mentioned above. This means PC and Xbox Series X|S will both offer better experiences because of Xbox One, rather than being held back by the original plan.

On top of that, Microsoft Flight Simulator could one day arrive on Xbox One consoles regardless. It's highly doubtful that a native port will ever happen, but Xbox Cloud Gaming provides an interesting avenue for Microsoft to bring their flagship flight sim to their largest group of dedicated fans. With Xbox Cloud Gaming now powered by advanced Xbox Series X hardware, it's possible that Xbox One consoles will one day be able to stream Microsoft Flight Simulator and other Xbox Series X|S Optimized games through the power of the cloud.

Nothing has been officially confirmed, and we don't have any release dates or windows to share at this time. Still, we know that Microsoft is at least considering this approach, and the technology is already there to make it happen. Not only would this provide a fresh breath of life for Xbox One consoles, it would also grant Xbox One players a way to experience Microsoft Flight Simulator in all its glory.

Is Xbox Play Anywhere supported by Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox?

Microsoft Flight Simulator Vl3 RainSource: Microsoft

I'd love to be able to confirm without a shadow of a doubt that Microsoft Flight Simulator is an Xbox Play Anywhere title, meaning players have to buy it only once to own it across Xbox and PC platforms. However, we're only mostly sure that this is the case. Microsoft has previously committed to supporting Xbox Play Anywhere with all of their first-party published games, but they're also notoriously terrible at communicating support for this specific feature.

A Microsoft Flight Simulator FAQ for PC preorders did confirm Xbox Play Anywhere support ages ago, but that FAQ has since been nuked from the internet and is no longer available. There's also no mention of Xbox Play Anywhere support anywhere on the Microsoft Flight Simulator store page, including its generic base game landing page. Finally, Microsoft Flight Simulator is not listed among upcoming Xbox Play Anywhere games from the Xbox website.

Still, like mentioned above, Microsoft is usually terrible at confirming this information. It's still very likely that Microsoft Flight Simulator is an Xbox Play Anywhere title since it was confirmed ages ago and both platforms share the same base game page in the Microsoft Store. If true, this means players who purchased Microsoft Flight Simulator from the Microsoft Store will own the game on Xbox day one, with cross-save and cross-play support.

We'll keep our eyes peeled for any official confirmation from Microsoft about this matter. If you're looking for a way to access Microsoft Flight Simulator on both Xbox and PC, however, Microsoft Flight Simulator is already available through Xbox Game Pass for PC, and will be available day one for Xbox.

If you're excited for Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox but are worried about playing with a controller, check out some of the best HOTAS Controllers for Xbox. Microsoft Flight Simulator will also almost certainly be a visual showcase on Xbox Series X|S, so consider one of the best 4K TVs for Xbox Series X|S while you're waiting for the game to release.

Xbox and PC

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 Box Art

Microsoft Flight Simulator

The ultimate flying experience

Microsoft Flight Simulator is the premier flight simulator experience, featuring a 1:1 rendition of the globe rendered with beautiful detail. While Microsoft Flight Simulator launched exclusively on powerful gaming PCs, the best flight sim around is now available on Xbox Series X|S, PC, and Xbox Game Pass.

A catalog of games

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

All your gaming needs, in one subscription

Is the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate the best value in all of gaming? It's possible. Ultimate bundles your Xbox Live Gold subscription, an Xbox Game Pass subscription for both Xbox consoles and Windows PCs, and Xbox Cloud Gaming for on-the-go. Microsoft Flight Simulator is already included in Xbox Game Pass for PC, and will be for Xbox on day one.

Xbox Series X/S

Main

We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.