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Flight Simulator 98 (PC)

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Revamp of the original Microsoft game. Developed and published by Microsoft

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    23 Reviews
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      13.12.2009 00:15
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      Great for its time

      I should probably preface my review by saying that I got this game free with a PC many, many years ago, and had no intention ever of buying it. However, it did allure me by what my 10-year old self viewed as a rather ridiculous concept for a game, so one day, I popped it in my computer and gave it a whirl. Needless to say, while I didn't really have much of a clue what I was doing, I spent hours on that game, largely crashing the plane into buildings and generally being impressed that they had managed to make the game quite fun through its technical marvel and impressive faithfulness to trying to recreate the flying experience. I don't know much about flying, but from what I've been told, this game is incredibly accurate with regard to the dashboard and also to the flight paths and locations of the airports. Also, the game's graphics for its time were very good, and the sound effects in particular are still memorable despite my not having played the game in many years. Also, the game still has very good technical support, in that there are literally thousands of downloadable planes, some made with the tongue-in-cheek, whereby gamers have added their own tags to the sides of the planes and such. This game is pretty old hat now, and there's no point playing it when there are more advanced versions out, but for it's time it was quite revolutionary, particularly that it allowed you to fly online with other players and was one of the first games to do modding on a huge, public scale. Whether you're a dumb kid who likes flying planes into builds or a fanatic who actually wants to do it properly (fly planes, not fly them into buildings), this will be satisfying for you.

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      31.12.2008 16:47
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      A good simulator that is not outdated.

      I have owned 3 versions of flight simulator over a period of about 15 years. I have had experience of flying cessna aircaft on several occasions and so i am in a position to comment on the realism of the simulator as compared to the real thing. The pros of this game are that it will work on a relatively low spec pc as this game is now fairly dated although it is still very good. It is not a game but a simulator and will work on windows 95 upwards with 8mb of ram and a processor only running at 66mhz. Anything above this greatly enhances the game. It comes with more scenery than previous versions and includes scenery that was formerly an add on such as Hawaii. It utilises MMX technology that was inroduced some while ago and this also enhances play. It is a real bonus to own this game if you are interested in gaining your private pilots licence (PPL) as it allows you to fly similar aircraft and become familiar with the terminology. The cons of this game are that if you are running it on a low spec pc it will jerk as the processor stuggles to keep up making it not very life like. You cannot use the rudder and elevators as most people will not own foot pedals which is a real negative. Overall this game will serve anyone with a passion for flying, both novice and professionals alike. It is not outdated and is still a very good purchase.

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        25.04.2008 19:37
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        Cheap Start To A Flight Sim Career

        A bit out of date now but this is an advantage as it makes the product accesible to those not wanting to spend too much on their first flight simulator, it is a very customiizable simulator with a vast repository of extra planes available for download online along with extra missions and scenery and mods from the flight sim community, the graphics are acceptable for this price range and the longevity of this simulator is shown in it's fan base, most missions involve set flight paths and taxing and landing training, you are guided through the missions by messages on the display and voice alerts when you are straying too far off course, some prefer to just go for the free flight option and see how the planes handle and to test out their downloaded planes, a good accompaniment to this flght sim is combat flight simulator 98 where you can take ww2 plane's into combat and if you like modding why not see how that Boeing 747 or F16 fares against a messerschimitz ? overall flight simulator 98 provides the quality graphics you would expect in this price range yet it's other features will make up for this.

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        17.05.2004 03:36
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        Even though it's a bit outdated now, for it's time this is a totally amazing PC flight simulator. If you can manage to get your hands on it now, usually under a budget label, it's perfect for people with lower spec PCs. The game includes over 3000 airports including major international airports, regional airports, airstrips and private airfields. All of the airports have correct runway positions and correct radio and navigation frequencies like ILS and more. Each airport comes with a small amount of Air Traffic Control but nothing special, that's one of the areas where later versions of MS Flight Simulator prove much better. The simulator comes with plenty of detailed aircraft including the Learjet 45, Boeing 737-400, Cessna 182, Schweizer sailplane, Sopwith Camel and the Bell 206B JetRanger III helicopter. Each of the aircraft come with an excellent interactive cockpit with realistic displays and working instrument panel. The planes have great realistic sound effects that are correct to that plane and not just made up. Each plane has realistic flight dynamics providing the ultimate realistic flight experience. As well as these planes there are thousands more available to download off the internet including military aircraft and plenty more commercial jets, lots of which come with new sounds and panels, others just use the panels from other planes, these planes are unofficial and not provided by Microsoft but they still work fine as long as all the correct files are supplied with the plane, some need you apply a couple of patches to the games but so far I haven't had any problems with my game and I must have around 50 downloaded aircraft on my game, they tend to be much better than the ones supplied with the game and some include moving parts an d other features that do not come with the planes supplied. The game's scenery is fantastically realistic as long as you set it to detailed in the options menu, areas of countries are accurately mapped and the correct type of scenery appears in that area, for instance cities like Leeds, Birmingham and London are all heavily built-up areas where as flying over the Lake District will find beautiful countryside. There are 45 detailed scenery areas where the buildings are true to real life and various landmarks in those areas can be seen, these include Paris, London and 20 US cities, Las Vegas looks especially good when flying at night. Like planes, scenery areas can be downloaded unofficially from the internet, but unlike planes they are quite difficult to install and it is very hard if the scenery designer does not include any instructions with the add-on. Navigation in the game takes a lot of getting used to and it's a good idea to find a navigation tool with a map if your not a professional pilot because the frequencies and co-ordinates in the game are very hard to understand and use. Once you have worked out where to go, you can fly the plane yourself or take a break and let the great auto-pilot feature take over, it can take control of almost all the controls including speed, heading, approach, altitude increase and decrease and more. Getting used to flying in Flight Simulator 98 takes a lot of time but once you've mastered the controls it is really worth it. If you like the game it is very much worth investing in a £15-£20 joystick, it makes it much easier to fly and gives a much more realistic experience, force feedback joysticks are said to be very good, I've just got a cheap, budget flight yoke though and it does the job well enough. The ability to take part in group flights on the internet is great, you can host a session, join an existing session or act as Air Traffic Controller in a flight! If you have a good enough internet connection this is a great feature, although numbers of sessions online are falling due to this been a very old game and many more sessions are for Flight Simulator 2002 and 2004. All in all this is a great game but age is showing on it a bit. If you have a decent PC and you can afford to pay a bit of extra money I would recommend getting one of the later versions of Flight Simulator.

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          11.03.2002 18:08
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          Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98 is a game for anyone who is interested in learning to fly. The game consists of various options whereby you can: learn the basics; practice on specific skills; go on adventures; take up challenges; or simply go where you want to go. Learning the basics For first time users, the game offers a series of lessons which take you step by step through basic principles of flight. There are both theory and practical lessons which the user can go through to achieve a good overall knowledge, and gain the necessary skills for the adventures and challenges that Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98 offers. Practice On Specific Skills For users that have carried out the lessons and covered the basics of flight, there are specific practical lessons set up so that you can practice areas where you experienced difficulty. This way you can continually improve your flying skills. Adventures Once you have got all the lessons out of the way, and polished up your flying skills, you can take on the adventures set by Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98. There are various levels of adventures that the user can carry out. The adventures range from carrying out sections of a flight plan, such as, (Taking Off/Making Turns/Landing) to flying the entire flight plan. The best way to carry out the adventures is to start at the top of the list and work through them, as the required skill level increases each time you go down to the next adventure. For example, some of the first adventures are purely for sight seeing purposes, whereas others follow strategic flight plans that must be adhered to. Challenges As you are in a simulator and not a real life situation, Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98 has a section titled “Challenges” whereby you carry out bizarre tasks that you would never dream of doing in real life. Things such as fly upside down in a commercia l airliner such as a 747!! There are many challenges to take up, which can keep you entertained for hours. If you have passed all the lessons, adventures and challenges, and you want to go flying, you can simply set up your own flight. In this option, you select the aircraft, starting point,(Airfield) the weather, and the date/time. Once you have selected these options you can start your own adventure. Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98 comes as a starting package which you can then add to. You can add new aircraft to your collection, or even update new scenery with more detailed surroundings. These are available in most software retailers, such as PC World, Game and Electronic Boutique. However, you can visit internet sites, and download aircraft and scenery for free. By using a search engine on the web you can simply type in Flight Simulator 98, and it will point you in the right direction. Most sites that offer free downloads, include full instructions on how to install the new aircraft/scenery in Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98. Microsoft’s Flight Simulator was designed to run using either Windows NT or Windows 95, but it will also run in Windows 98 or Windows Millennium Edition. Unlike many modern games that require high processor speeds and RAM, Flight Simulator 98 does not. Within the game there are options to select the level of detail that is displayed. Therefore, if you have a slower PC and the screen seems to jump, you can reduce the detail to compensate so that your screen stops jumping. You can monitor the system’s performance by noting the frames/second counter that is displayed at the top of the screen. You do not require a joystick to play the game but it is advisable, as you use the keyboard quite a lot even when you are using a joystick. Controls such as the engine, rudder, gear and flaps are controlled using the keyboard. Therefore, by having a joystick it can help you greatly. On the other hand, you can also purchase custom joysticks such as Microsoft’s Sidewinder which has engine controls and more function buttons so that you do not even require the keyboard to play the game. I have had many hours game play out of Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98. For anybody who is interested in learning to fly, or enjoys flight based games, I would recommend Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 98.

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            16.09.2001 03:24
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            Flight Sim is a fantastic simulator, and it must be rememember that it is a simulator, not a game. It is very accurate and has levels of realism not seen before. As such it is VERY difficult. Don't expect to load this thing up and start getting jets off the ground, flying them around and landing them safely, it takes a lot of doing! Before doing anything there is a chunky manual which you need to read at least part of before you will be able to do anything useful in the cockpit. After that, the interactive lessons help you build up skills. If you have the patience, it is a very rewarding product. If you do not, you will find yourself frustrated with it - set aside plenty of time!

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            18.12.2000 02:44

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            I have found Microsoft Flight Simulator 98 to be very unrealistic. I think that it is the worst flight simulator ever. The graphics are very rubbish and you can't tell whether you are landing on a runway or grass. It all just looks like green, brown and grey patches and the textures of the aircraft are rubbish to. The sounds aren't too bad but they could really do with improving quite a bit. The flight simulator has caused me and my computer a few problems and have found that the computer has crashed because of errors with the simulator. I'm a big fan of flight simulators and have found that this is microsofts worst ever simulator. The dynamics are ok and bringing in the 737 was a great touch but it just isn't very good and I wouldn't recommend it.

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            19.11.2000 00:13
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            As with many other Microsoft's software, this one is bad. As usual, the programmers at Microsoft didn't do their homework. Instead of making a new product, they tried to sell us, poor customers, an old program with a new facade. It doesn't work! We are not so dumb as to not notice the horrible graphics (not even better with a Voodoo 2) boring landscape (most often flat and full of ommissions, like a MOUNTAIN!)and unrealistic control. For years I must admit as to having played earlier versions of this game and enjoyed it...on Apple IIe! But for a machine like a P-II 400 mhz with Voodoo2 it is very disapointing. Better luck next time Microsoft! Have you noticed everything they do sucks and is always full of bugs? Maybe there are some people who like this game, and I respect their choice. But they sure are missing much better ones if they really like the genre.

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            15.11.2000 13:16

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            Flight Simulater 98 is not really my style of game. The graphics are not up to scratch and the sound is of poor quality. The graphics are very poor as a country just has its main feature with little blocks everywhere else. For example France has the Eiffel Tower there with just tiny little blocks elsewhere. This was one thing that I didn't like and as I paid £40 for it, I thought it was a complete waste of money. When you actually do fly, there is nothing that makes you continue. I don't want to continue playing. The only good thing about this game is that it has a wide range of airports in all sorts of cities and that it has a nice range of aeroplanes. To round up, if you would like a game with poor graphics, poor sound buy this one.

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            05.10.2000 03:53

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            Having used an older version of MS Flight Sim I was looking forward to some great action with this one. Although the basics are well thought out and flying is not to dificult to get the hang of and there are some good scenes and flight possibilities I was disappointed with the graphics. I have used it on a few machines ranging from my normal P75(its slow on this) to an AMD 350mhz and altough much faster the graphics aren't much better. I have no 3D graphics cards which may improve things but comparing the scenery with some other flight sims and racing games this one falls far short of the mark. It takes quite a bit of time to load as well. Definitely not worth the full price in my opinion. Everything else is pretty good its just a shame about the graphics being so shaky.

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            22.08.2000 22:39

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            Flight Sim is a fantastic simulator, and it must be rememember that it is a simulator, not a game. It is very accurate and has levels of realism not seen before. As such it is VERY difficult. Don't expect to load this thing up and start getting jets off the ground, flying them around and landing them safely, it takes a lot of doing! Before doing anything there is a chunky manual which you need to read at least part of before you will be able to do anything useful in the cockpit. After that, the interactive lessons help you build up skills. If you have the patience, it is a very rewarding product. If you do not, you will find yourself frustrated with it - set aside plenty of time!

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            20.08.2000 08:06
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            However good the professionals say flight simulator is, it just is so boring. Yeah I can see the real aviation pilots finding it fun, it’s their job. But whereas in real life you can see the breath taking scenery here the graphics are so poor that all you can see is something that vaguely looks likes land and sea. The houses though are the worst part about this game because you can actually land on them and the print of the house is still there. Also there is no other aircraft in the sky unless you join up on the web! And there is no air traffic control to guide you to your destination.

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            04.08.2000 16:24

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            Firstly, I'd like to address something about this game which has been bothering me. It's a civil aviation simulator - so why do people complain when you don't get to shoot at stuff?! When was the last time you were going on holiday and the pilot of your 747 came over the intercom and said: "Sorry ladies and gentlemen we're just taking a small diversion over Northern Iraq to take out a target of opportunity, thanks for your patience." It's jumbo's, cessna's and loads of other planes that will bore you to death if you like combat and don't like pretending to fly from London to New York. To be honest, I hate this game. It bores me stiff, but from a point of view of someone who would enjoy this sort of thing it's fantastic because it's got loads of planes to choose from (you can download others, and buy them too), loads of scenery from all over the world (again, you can download more/ buy it) and stacks of weather/environmental options which can be customised to suit your needs. It's got loads of options and features and if you're interested it's very good and very realistic and very comprehensive. But it's not combat, it's not exciting so don't buy it for that!

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            19.07.2000 02:47

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            Competition is good. Microsoft Flight Simulator has long been the undisputed champion of the civil aviation sim scene, and the last four years' worth of halfhearted upgrades led some to think that the flyboys in Redmond had given up even trying. Now, with two highly anticipated contenders on the way - Sierra's Pro Pilot and Looking Glass's Flight Unlimited 2 - Microsoft has proven itself fighting fit with a thorough retooling of the classic. While flight scenery under standard hardware has been tuned, with a graphics accelerator card - the game supports Direct3D compatible cards - the graphics have become breathtaking, and it's no surprise that the illusion of flight is all the more convincing. Gone are the shimmer of distant scenery and the flicker of ground lights at night. Clouds are wispy and transparent, and the aliased patchwork terrain of earlier versions is now smoothly blended and vastly more realistic. Devotees will also notice more subtle graphic embellishments: Runways have skid-marks, and dawn really does now rise in the East. With the release of Windows 98, this version of Microsoft Flight Simulator will even support multiple monitors, making homemade wraparound cockpits a real (and, for spouses, terrifying) possibility.

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            19.07.2000 01:29
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            Flight simulator 98 is a good game if you think of it as an education sort of game, because it teaches you about how aeroplanes work and how easy they are to control. However, if you think of Microsoft flight simulator 98 as been a fun to play, breath-taking game with good graphics then you might as well not bother buying it, and get something else like Flight unlimited 3, which is by far much more fun! I leave it up to you do decide what to get. I would personally prefer to get flight unlimited 3. If you need any more information, contact me. nickwatson@netaholic.co.uk

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