Headset maker Turtle Beach announced in June that it was entering the flight simulator market. Now its newest controller — compatible with Xbox Series X, Xbox One, and Windows 10 — is going up for pre-order. Called the VelocityOne Universal Flight Controller, the $379.95 device will be available starting at 12:00 p.m. EST on Nov. 3. There’s a limit of two per customer.
The launch of Microsoft Flight Simulator in 2020, combined with the global semiconductor shortage, has made it difficult to get new controllers into the hands of consumers. One good option for Xbox is the Thrustmaster T.Flight, a traditional stick-and-throttle set-up that’s great for smaller planes. But many of the large aircraft in Flight Simulator sport a yoke. Companies like Thrustmaster and Honeycomb have leaped into action, creating several new devices. But so far neither has brought an Xbox-compatible yoke to market.
Turtle Beach’s offering has excellent provenance. According to a presentation given during the annual FSExpo, the engineering is being handled by some old hands from Saitek, makers of the venerable X-52 and X-56 platforms. (That company was acquired by Logitech in 2016.) Official descriptions note that it will include Hall effect sensors, optical encoders, and stainless steel components as well as an integrated multifunction display panel and status lights. It should be just the thing for flying without a keyboard. Note that there’s no official word yet on when it will start shipping.
Microsoft Flight Simulator is still going strong with a steady cadence of updates, including more detailed locations, new airplanes, and its first (sort of) helicopter. Next up is the addition of a new multiplayer mode with the Reno air races module, which will include flyable World War II-era planes such as the P-51 Mustang.