Forget the view out the windows—the real beauty of Microsoft Flight Simulator is in the cockpit

Sure, Microsoft Flight Simulator looks gorgeous as you fly over the entire damn world, gazing out the windows at mountains and oceans and vistas and shining cities seen through the clouds. But for my money the real eye-candy is located place inside the plane. The cockpits of Microsoft Flight Simulator are beautiful and amazingly detailed.

A new Feature Discovery video you can watch below highlights not just the looks but the functionality of Microsoft Flight Simulator's cockpits, which have been created using a new game engine called Glass Cockpit. Lead software engineer Martial Bossard walks us through the cockpit designs and instruments, which even simulates the oil pressure and electrical systems of the plane so the needles of the instruments change depending on the status of those systems.

I'm not any sort of plane expert so I'm also happy to see that pre-flight checklists can be automated—though it honestly looks like a satisfying activity to perform manually, too. Touchscreens in the cockpit are fully simulated, analog controls can be pressed, poked, and moved as well, making me think this could be a lot of fun in VR. Check out the entire cockpit feature below.

Christopher Livingston
Senior Editor

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.