What is the best flight simulator.

I’m kind of new to flight sim and thaught that Prepar3d was the most accurate. But it has not good planes without add-on compared to Xplane 11. And it also look much less user friendly. So what would you recommand ? Is there any good free add-on for Prepar or should I take Xplane even if it’s a little less life like ?

Hi and welcome to Mudspike!
Which flightsim that is ”the best” is very subjective.
X-Plane is a very realistic simulator with a growing fan base. There are also a lot of good add ons for it.
If you want a slightly lighter, but still good, flightsim, Aerofly FS2 may be worth looking at.

Hi, welcome!

“The best” is not something we can help you with.
Which apsects of a flight sim do you find most important? Is the fluid feeling of the flight model, the graphics, the availability of paid or free add-ons? Planes, helicopters, airport scenery, terrain scenery?

It sounds like you want a simulator with good free add-ons. X-Plane has some amazing freeware planesover at X-Plane.org (Zibo 737, Let L-410, Aerobask Lisa Akoya, Robin, etc.) And many more freeware planes of lesser quality.

There are also many airport sceneries for X-Plane, as well as free orthophotos (high res satellite imagery and height data) for amazing terrain. I am on mobile now, hope someone else can help you find the links.

DCS is a combat flight sim. It is generally considered to have the best flight (especially helicopters!) and systems models, but almost no free add-ons. The base sim is free with 2 planes, other planes cost extra. Also, there is a limited number of theatres, of which only 1 is free. They are of very high quality though, but this means you cannot fly all over the world.

I know less about the other popular flight sims, except that P3D and FSX are generally used with many paid add-ons.
Aerofly FS2 is very beautiful and very good on framerate, especially in VR.

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But honestly it is the only civilian sim I own. The others might actually be “better” in many respects but I don’t care. I know X-Plane very well. I spend very little of my valuable sim time tweaking and moding. The sim has been on a near constant trajectory of improvement for many years now. For at least 10 of those years the X-Plane team have successfuly marketed X-Plane as a platform for professional simulators. Therefore it is a financially successful and stable sim that will be around for years to come. You can visit x-plane.org and scroll down to the bottom of the page and note the hundreds of users currently logged in. That is a huge community to draw tallent from. Many of them are making scenery and planes and add-ons. But you very well may decide not to take advantage of any of it. The stock X-Plane with its stock planes and wonderful library of stock 3D scenery is all you really need.

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Anything civilian: X-Plane 11

If you want military planes (check which ones are included): DCS World.
Unfortunately the maps are very limited. Highly detailed though.

Also worth noting: The flight models in DCSW beat everything I have seen yet. Especially the ones for helicopters.

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Hey @Rameshsalvi, I would recomend this page for P3D freeware

There are many categories so maybe you will find something suitable.

I dont own P3D but imo it is good sim. And if you dont want to spend fortune on adons there are regular sales on many adon sites.
Xmas time is comin so big sales just around the corner…


Personally, I think that Fly! II is the best. :sunglasses:

(That was a joke…albeit not a funny joke… :slightly_smiling_face:)

X plane is probably the best in my eyes. However currently I’m flying FSX on steam.

Fsx is dated but has many great planes.

X plane has awesome payware stuff and some good ex payware free stuff. The thing with x plane though is you have to be comfortable being lonely in the sky, unless x plane 11 changed that.

It all depends what you want out of the sim.

For combat Dcs is best but you can pick up falcon 4.0 on steam for $7 and then download the BMS mod and make a pretty dang good combat some for cheap. Also falcon is easier on your computer requirements if that’s an issue.

One thing I have noticed about P3D or P4D or whatever it is, most addons cost about $10 usd more than it would for FSX. It’s the same addon but more money

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Pilotwings 64.

To teach the controversy here: Many folks would argue DCS is still lagging behind Falcon 4/BMS in many ways, chiefly it’s dynamic campaign which offers far more re-play-ability. It also comes ‘out of the box’ with a highly advanced simulation of what many consider to be the greatest multi-role fighter of all time, the F-16. The key here, is that learning the F-16 yields greater dividends in that you take those skills and apply them to a greater range of mission types. It’s cheap, it runs on pretty much any modern gaming PC, and offers endless hours of simming. On paper at least, it’s got an edge, to say the least.

But Falcon is old. and while BMS is a jaw-dropping effort to drag the engine kicking and screaming into modern day simming, there are certain areas where they can’t hide it’s age: It’s not readily compatible with VR, the GUI feels dated, and the graphics, while outstanding from certain angles and aspects, are also very dated in others.

That said, when ED is fished building out the Hornet (“when” is an entirely different conversation…), it’ll be more or less the equal to Falcons F-16 in that it can swing into many of the same rolls as the F-16, with the advantage of offering what is already shaping up to be the most immersive carrier ops experience in desktop sim history. There’s also rumblings of a dynamic campaign in the works. Again though, “when” is a concept that has perpetually plagued DCS…

DCS of course is easily one of, if not the, best looking flight sim out there, when everything is cranked up, and offers an outstanding VR experience. It has a mission editor that’s very versatile (though has a somewhat steep learning curve) and offers an aspect of replayability in and of itself.

Cost is another issue though: DCS modules represent a premium product, and are getting more advanced by the year. The price of modules has been trending this way as well, with the Hornet seeing a price around $70 as of this writing. To me, a long time fan of the Hornet, that’s a fair price, assuming that ED delivers on their ambitious plans to flesh out so many of the hornets systems and behavioral characteristics. Others of course disagree. Flight sims are a resource intensive to develop, and are made for a relatively small audience. To that end, I’d rather see the option to pay a premium price for a premium module, then see a developer cut features to cater to a larger audience at a lower price.

In summary: As BMS starts to wane, DCS waxes. If you’re new to the hobby, start with BMS: it’s cheap, and therefor low risk to start with, and has a lot of life left yet.


If you don’t have a Steam account Falcon 4.0 can be bought as part of the Falcon collection at Good Old Games too.

Falcon Collection includes the following:

  • Falcon
  • Falcon A.T.
  • Falcon Gold (featuring the complete collection of updated versions of Falcon 3.0 , MiG-29, Operation: Fighting Tiger and Art of the Kill dogfighting video)
  • Falcon 4.0 (version 1.08, Windows only, added as a part of the bonus goodies pack)

This copy of Falcon 4.0 is compatible with the BMS addon.

Daedalusgog wrote:

I my opinion, the most interesting part of this bundle is the falcon 4 copy. It allows you to play the modern F4 BMS total conversion mod legally. BMS (now in its version 4.33) simulates very realistically different versions of the F16 (block 40, MLUs, block 52, etc…) with all the avionics, recent munitions, targeting pods, buddy lasing, 3D cockpit, dynamic campaign, updated graphics, support for modern joysticks, support for track IR and a very active multiplayer community. Steep learning curve. BMS is for hardcore simmers.


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