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Best Alternatives to Microsoft Flight Simulator


Embarking on a ride to virtual skies is exhilarating, and while Microsoft Flight Simulator has made it quite possible, there’s a whole world of flight simulation alternatives waiting to be explored. This article will dive head-first into this vast world and discover some of the best alternatives to Microsoft Flight Simulator.

Best Alternatives to Microsoft Flight Simulator

If you are looking for the best alternatives to Microsoft Flight Simulator, here are some of the options available in the market:

  1. FlightGear
  2. X-Plane 11
  3. GeoFS
  4. FlyInside
  5. YSFlight

Let’s look into these alternatives.

1] FlightGear

FlightGear is one of the most tested names in flight simulation, specifically known for providing optimum customization and advanced settings. It has been in the market since 1997 and, therefore, boasts a dedicated community of developers who always try their best to improve the maps and features. The best thing is its open-source nature and user-friendly interface, which allows users to have a hassle-free installation and easy navigation through the beautiful 3-D rendered environment.

Multiple aircraft options are available, ranging from a Cessna 172 to more exquisite ones, such as the Boeing 777, A6M20 Zero, and the Zepplein NT07 airship. The major drawback is the limited in-built scenery, however, users can easily overcome this hurdle by downloading additional regions and over 20K airports from FlightGear’s website, or through BitTorrent. Go to to know more.

Read: Flight Simulator not working, launching, loading or playable on this device

2] X-Plane 11

Best Alternatives to Microsoft Flight Simulator

If you are looking for exceptionally realistic flight simulation, X-Plane 11 is the next choice. The software is compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux, and also provides a demo version so that users can make up their minds without getting pressured about subscriptions. It offers authentic cockpits for various airplane models and intricately designed 3D environments for over 13K airports worldwide.

It also boasts realistic weather and airports that come to life with its many features such as hangars, pushback tugs, and roaming fuels that cater both to the aircraft and the simulator’s AI planes. X-plane goes the extra mile with details such as the possibility of system failures, adding depth to the experience. The software is the best match if you are open up to initial learning and then all-time flying skills. You can get it from or from Steam.

3] GeoFS

GeoFS is an online browser-based flight simulator that is an ideal deal for users with limited Internet and storage resources. The simulator allows users to experience taking off and flying globally with a selection of 20 distinct airplanes. The platform tries its best to make it a user-friendly platform with customizable controls, easy takeoff, and in-game instructions that will assist, and make it easier to get used to. Additionally, users will also have the option to switch between multi-engine planes, traditional propeller models, and a diverse range of aircraft, including hot air balloons, choppers, and paragliders.

GeoFS boasts a vast list of features where users will get multiplayer interaction compatibility, real-time weather conditions, and live map features that allow users to track all the pilots, and choose starting altitudes. The only aspect that can tick some gamers is its less detailed environment as cityscapes may lack distinctiveness and appear as a blend of green and beige.  However, users can upgrade this quality by subscribing to the premium version at a very affordable rate.

4] FlyInside

FlyInside is another option for users looking for a realistic virtual reality experience. It is available for PC users, offering a free trial version for those interested. The noticeable point is the game’s dedication to making it entirely compatible with VR, allowing users to step into a truly immersive flying adventure. While a desktop version is available, the optimal flying experience is achieved through full immersion using a VR motion controller and headset.

Users here get a physics engine that closely mirrors real-life flying conditions, realistic 3D models, and graphics, ensuring an engaging overall visual experience for users in the virtual skies. FlyInside is a platform for those who are ready to embrace Virtual Reality. Navigate to to know more.

5] YSFlight

YSFlight goal is to accommodate low-powered PCs with basic visuals, ensuring it is user-friendly for a wide audience. It has stuck to a simple and consistent design ever since its release in 1999. However, it still packs a robust set of features into a small file size. With over 70 aircraft options, including the Blue Angels F-18 Hornet, and Apache helicopter, and customizable maps worldwide, YSFlight offers a lot despite its modest size.

The game is also very customizable, as users can easily tweak additional features such as wind variables and a day-night component. It also has activities like flying in formation with AI-based wingmates, engaging in aerial dogfights with friends, and recording and replaying gameplay footage. The interface is user-friendly as the Atari-style HUB provides essential in-flight information displaying speeds, elevation, and direction. The simulator also benefits from a supportive community that contributes add-ons such as new plane models, maps, and ground vehicles.

Lastly, despite its recognition for civilian flight capabilities, YSFlight is versatile, offering other features like air combat, missions, multiplayer support, and mode. It also supports various input methods, including joystick, mouse, and keyboard controls. Head to to check it out.

That’s it!

Read: Best Air Warfare games for Windows on Microsoft Store

Which is better Microsoft Flight Simulator or X-Plane?

Before looking into what each of them offers, it’s necessary to keep in mind that the choice depends upon users’ preferences, priorities, and specific features. Microsoft Flight Simulator is widely acclaimed for its stunning visuals and realistic graphics, however, X-Plane is often praised for its realistic flight physics and aerodynamics. The former boasts a user-friendly interface and its simulator includes live air traffic based on real-world data, while the latter has a strong modding community with a robust Virtual Reality (VR) Support. Both simulators offer a variety of detailed cockpits, aircraft, and realistic weather systems, therefore justly make your decisions.

Read: Flight Simulator not working, launching, loading or playable on this device

Is Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 worth it?

To say the least, yes Microsoft Flight simulator is worth all the hype. It provides its users with various facilities in a single game such as breathtaking and realistic graphics and world simulation, real-time weather and live traffic, a variety of aircraft, and regular updates. The list doesn’t end here as the game has a vibrant community, with an availability of a wide variety of third-party add-ons, including additional aircraft, airports, and scenery enhancements.

Also Read: Microsoft Flight Simulator System Requirements.

Best Alternatives to Microsoft Flight Simulator

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