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I have been a big fan of Microsoft Flight Simulator X since its release, though I have also spent a lot of time flying X-Plane, which I also enjoy a great deal. Recently I purchased Pro Flight Simulator and took it for a series of test flights. You now have the benefit of learning from my experience before you fork over your money on a flight simulator game. Installation was quite easy, with the download of the disc image and several documents. Definitely take the time to download the additional aircraft available. You do have to download the aircraft one at a time, accompanied by a large banner offering the DVD version of the game for an additional $40.00. I found downloading the aircraft to be fairly quick on my high speed cable connection. Next, you need to download the worldwide scenery, assuming you opted for the deluxe package with the scenery. I highly recommend this option, which raises the price by $79.95, but obviously enhances the experience tremendously. Downloading the scenery is where I seriously considered ordering the DVD's, as it does take a lot of time and I experienced a few server hiccups along the way. The scenery comes in 10 deg x 10 deg squares which you have to download one at a time. The biggest frustration I had was that the map does not indicate which cells you have already downloaded. Once you get past this step once, you never have to do it again, and the scenery is breathtaking. I was happy to see the PA-28-161, Piper Warrior, as one of the aircraft choices. This was the aircraft I learned to fly in 20 years ago at Wright-Patterson AFB. I loaded up the scenery for Wright-Patt and the rest of southern Ohio and took it for a spin. Aircraft performance was remarkably realistic, and matched my memory very well. Controls behaved like the real thing, and were challenging until you get used to them due to that realism. Scenery was beautiful and accurate, and included all my old stomping grounds from getting my Private Pilot's license Springfield, Greene County, Sporty's, Muncie, Bowling Green, and more. The variety of available aircraft is huge, including some you don't see very often, such as the Rafale, as well as several historic aircraft, helicopters, and even a zeppelin. I tried several of these and though some are better than others, all were enjoyable to fly and true to their real-life counterparts. Given the worldwide scenery, realistic controls, accurate performance, weather, multiplayer mode, and the many aircraft to choose from, in my experience Pro Flight Simulator is the most realistic flight sim experience available. The price of the deluxe package may be a little higher than others, but considering that it includes free updates for life, it is actually the best deal going. You will never have to pay another penny for this sim again! Download it today. You won't be disappointed. For more reviews and flight sim information, go to http://flightsimulatorreviews.net


Scott Reed (also known by the pen name, Tony Carpenter) is an aerospace engineer who has worked in the field of simulation and modeling for over 20 years. He has flown as a private pilot, and has worked with and around pilots his entire career. More of his articles can be found at: http://flightsimulatorreviews.net

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Pro Flight Simulator Game Review