Learning to fly has always sounded like a fun idea. There's just a few, small problems. First, it requires pretty substantial amounts of cash. Second, the knowledge that when you're flying, all you have between you and the ground is a thin sheet of metal. And third, the whole idea of flying can all seem a little bit intimidating. That's where Dovetail Games - the Kent/Stirling based studio of Train Sim fame - come in, with a brand new flight simulator designed to make taking to the skies that little bit easier.
Ever since acquiring the rights (and technology) to Microsoft's fabled Flight Simulator series in 2014, Dovetail Games have been waiting for their chance to put the technology to good use, with the snappily titled Dovetail Games Flight School set to be their first flight sim release. Promising to "[break] down the barriers that make flight simulation feel inaccessible", according to Stephen Hood, Creative Director at Dovetail Games, the game will be the first of two flight sims the studio plan on releasing this year, with Flight School aiming to help break rookie pilots in to the whole flying lark.
Seemingly intended as a kind of prequel to the main event, Dovetail Games Flight School will come with a complete series of tutorials and training missions, designed to take rookies through the very basics of aviation in an accessible manner. As you'd likely expect, there's actually a lot that goes into keeping a plane in the air, and perhaps more than would first meet the eye. Not simply a case of getting up enough speed to take off, once you're airborne you also have to worry about spins, stalls, and G forces, not to mention the fine art of "trimming", a procedure done to counter the effects of having a giant propeller on the front of your plane, which would otherwise cause the plane to slowly rotate, while lifting the nose upwards. Giving you everything you need to know, with the usual Dovetail Games attention to detail and authenticity, beginners can take their time to work their way through the tutorials, while more experienced pilots can skip straight to the missions and free flight mode, to really see what the game has to offer.
Coming bundled with just two planes - a Piper PA-18 Super Cub (pictured above), and another that's yet to be revealed, we'll be expecting Dovetail Games Flight School to weigh in at a budget price when it launches later this April, with a second, presumably more expansive sim, Dovetail Games Flight Simulator, set to follow at some point later this year. And while at the moment the games are only announced for PC, Dovetail Games did announce a partnership with Microsoft last year to bring not only the new Train Simulator (which will now be powered by the Unreal Engine 4) to the Xbox One, but also Dovetail Games Fishing, and Dovetail Games Flight Simulator to the Xbox One - and presumably later, the PS4.
Plenty for simulation fans to be excited about, then - and with a release set for April, not too long to go before we get to take to the skies ourselves!