Microsoft Pilots New Aerocaches

 

Categories: Aerocaches (Microsoft Flight) GeoMedia

 

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s an Aerocache – a high-flying, new take on virtual geocaches by Microsoft.

This airborne treasure hunt will be a bonus feature for players of the company’s latest PC game, Microsoft Flight – being released as a free download later this year.

Yesterday its games division, Microsoft Studios, unveiled the revamped flight simulator, in which “players view the world from above in a visually stunning and realistic representation of the earth” – either by taking the helm “using highly rendered, accurate cockpits and authentic piloting procedures” or using a mouse and keyboard to control an exterior view of the plane.

According to project manager Joshua Howard: “Many people dream of flying, but few have the chance to experience the fun of exploring the world from above. Microsoft Flight provides players the opportunity to explore that curiosity and interest. Aviation can be incredibly technical, but we’ve taken great care to build an experience that makes taking to the skies thrilling and accessible for everyone.”

However, there were few specifics on what you’ll actually encounter in its freemium model as you soar over Hawaii’s big island in the two-seater cockpit of an amphibious, carbon-fibre frame ICON A5 plane (that’s it above).

For paying members or those with a Games for Windows Live account, though, the sky’s the limit. Microsoft has already promised multiple aircraft options, region-specific weather, authentic terrain and recognisable landmarks, as well as its daily “Aerocache” challenge – described as a geocaching-style hunt in the sky.

The screenshots pictured here – showing the collection of two different aerocaches  – are courtesy of American gaming website Fly Away Simulation, whose staffer William Luxton was present at the original demonstration of Microsoft Flight on December 13th.

Earlier this week, he blogged about the experience, saying: “Aerocache hunt is a fantastic idea that will suit anyone who likes to explore. Aerocaches are scattered around the island, and exploration for them exposes scenery and landmarks that users may have otherwise missed, or might be attracted to.

“Players can play the challenge mode to try to find specific ones, or find them in free-flight, as they are a constant in the game and will be there in any mode. If a player chooses not to sign in to [Windows] Live, there will be three Aerocache hunts. On the other hand, if they do sign in, there will be hundreds – with more added everyday, including themed ones. For instance, on July 4th, one might lead you to a hidden fireworks display.”

Beta testers are currently putting the game through its paces but the rest of you will have to wait till Microsoft Flight is officially released in the Northern Hemisphere spring.

*Will you download Microsoft Flight just to find an aerocache? Let us know below.
 
 



 

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  1. Simmerhead says:

    January 10, 2012 at 7:58 am

    No. Looks like the most boring game concept I’ve seen in PC games over the last twenty years…

  2. MAntunes says:

    April 11, 2012 at 2:39 am

    Oh, no! Another type of couch geocaching!

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