Microsoft Flight Simulator’s virtual reality beta could begin this month, the game’s head of development said in a developer Q&A on Twitch this week. The testing will begin on Windows Mixed Reality before moving to other VR platforms.
Microsoft’s Jorg Neumann said the closed beta is looking at a late October or early November start. Players who want to get in on it will need to sign up for Microsoft’s Insider program (it’s the same thing as the Xbox Insider program). An FAQ has more detailed instructions and requirements for enlisting.
You’ll also need a Windows Mixed Reality headset. The latest and greatest there is the HP Reverb G2. In July, Neumann told Polygon that would be the first headset to support Flight Simulator, but it hasn’t launched yet. Acer, Lenovo, Dell, and other PC makers have compatible headsets for sale now.
Later in the discussion, Neumann mentioned the next world update will involve U.S. airspace. The first world update, covering Japan, arrived earlier this week. Neumann said Microsoft intends to release these world updates every two or three months, so the next one should get here before the end of the year.
As for still-to-come features, like shared cockpits, Neumann said developers are still working on them, but their top priority now is polishing up the existing multiplayer modes. When that’s handled, players will begin to see things like the shared cockpit, as well as seasons and other things mentioned in the run-up to Flight Simulator’s mid-August launch.