Who to pick to write Flight Simulator's next chapter? Well, "trains" sounds like "planes" so why not Train Simulator developer Dovetail? Oh snap! Microsoft was thinking the same thing.
None of the FS98 reviews I can find on the Web, mention The Pixie. He was about so high, wore a beautifully tailored flight suit, and sat atop your monitor or desk while you flew. Every so often he'd hold up a little sign emblazoned with the words 'Fancy a forage?' The first couple of times you might manage to ignore him, but at least once an evening you'd usually find yourself nodding in affirmation. You did indeed fancy a forage.
Microsoft has shut down Aces Studio, the developer behind the highly successful Flight Simulator series.
Something happened to me last night that hasn't happened for around 25 years. No, not that. (It's only been 138 days since that last happened.) No, last night I was shot down in Microsoft Flight Simulator.
Back in nineteen-eighty-something-or-other the culprit was one of FS1's dastardly Fokkers (sadly absent from FS2, FS3 etc.) last night it was a gang of rhino poachers in a speeding 4WD. I was trailing them in my Bell JetRanger and foolishly ignored the co-pilot's advice about not getting too close. Result: a bullet-riddled helo, a flaming engine, and an unscheduled landing in the middle of a lion-infested game reserve. Excellent edge-of-the-seat stuff.
It's taken them twenty-odd years, but MS have finally realised that not everyone buys realistic non-combat flight simulations to Sunday-drive Cessnas, and autopilot Airbuses. FSX added a welcome dollop of drama to a staid series, and this official expansion pack continues the good work.