Microsoft Flight Simulator's sprawling 40th Anniversary update has launched, bringing with it a load of new planes, airports, helicopters, and heliports, along with a suite of classic missions from previous Flight Simulator releases. It's a big update bringing several much-requested features to the latest entry in the beloved Flight Simulator (opens in new tab) franchise.
It also has a new easter egg: You can play Flight Simulator inside Flight Simulator now.
Specifically, loading up in a Diamond DA62 will let you use the plane's in-game console to play Flight Simulator from way back in 1982—and the three subsequent games, all the way down to Flight Simulator 4 from 1989. You can play out the entire 1980s of Flight Simulator on the dashboard of a plane inside a flight simulator in 2022.
To do it you'll get in cockpit view out on the tarmac, then roll down to that ELT switch in the lower right corner of the right-side digital display. Once flipped to the on position you can watch as the left-side display changes to a playable version of flight sims past. You can switch between games at the top and control what's going on with an on-screen keyboard.
Is it an ergonomic and practical way to play Flight Simulator 1982? Absolutely not. Is it a completely delightful easter egg which immediately goes into my theoretical book of greatest Easter Eggs of all time? Absolutely yes.
The 40th Anniversary Patch isn't all jokes, of course, and brings a lot of new planes and a big old proper jet airliner in the form of the Airbus A230. I, of course, am more excited about the historical planes, like the delightfully massive and impractical wooden seaplane that is the Spruce Goose. (opens in new tab) For some reason, for me, Flight Simulator is at its best because it does both realistic and absurd historical aircraft just as well as it does a Halo dropship (opens in new tab), for example.