What are the best flight simulator games for Windows?

asked by Anonymous
1478 contributors
20 solutions
  1. 115

    #1Elite Dangerous

    Elite Dangerous

    Elite Dangerous is a space simulation game developed by Frontier Developments and first released in 2015. It lets players explore an open-world cutthroat galaxy where players battle it out to freedom and glory.

    Games

    Windows, PlayStation 4

    $29.99

    Charles Collins
    Written on February 12, 2017
    "If you are looking for a flight simulator game for windows, look no further than Elite Dangerous. Elite Dangerous is an awesome game available on steam that allows you to fly spaceships. I have been playing the game for a couple months now and it does not disappoint. I really love the graphics and the ability to upgrade my ship. I also love being able to connect with people from all over the world while playing this game. "
  2. 109

    #2X3: Reunion

    X3: Reunion
    X3 Reunion is a space flight simulator on an epic scale. Everything is vast, massive, exciting and dauting. Get ready for a great cosmic adventure.
    Games

    Windows

    $9.99

    Guo Gao
    Written on January 8, 2017
    "I thoroughly enjoyed playing this game. If you're a fan of sandbox simulation games, and love sci-fi and space themes, you must give this game a try. I've had a lot of fun so far with this game, and I feel like I haven't even come close to what I want to accomplish. There is some learning curve, but definitely worth it if you like these types of games."
  3. 104

    #3Simpleplanes

    Simpleplanes
    SimplePlanes is an arcade, build and fly, flight "simulator". You design your own aircrafts and take to the sky with them. Addictive, complete and frustrating in a good way.
    Games

    Windows

    $12.99

    Terry Woods
    Written on January 7, 2017
    "Simpleplanes was really fun! I was looking for a windows flight simulator game when I found it, and I'm glad that it was the one I decided to go for. If you just want to do the flight simulator, you can download tons of pre-built planes for free to try, or you can build your own and test them out. There is a lot of variety in the pre-built planes, with fictional and sci-fi designs available along with realistic replica builds."

DID YOU KNOW?

Did you know that the earliest recorded flight simulator was made up of two halves of a barrel? The Antoinette company was a widely-known French manufacturer of light petrol engines, pioneering the development of airplanes before the first Great War. Unfortunately, the controls for aircraft during that era weren't as intuitive as the ones we have today, and after a series of constant crashes and failed flight tests, Antoinette decided to create a simulator in order for novice pilots to learn their planes' proper input. Said simulator was made out of two halves of a barrel, with one half acting as a base and the other as the cockpit itself. This contraption was aptly named "tonneau Antoinette" - Antoinette's barrel - and was the precursor to the modern flight simulators we see today.

Presently, the concept of simulating a pilot's flight with realistic scenarios, factors, and even communication between other participants has been seen by many as not just a useful practice, but also a fun one. With this in mind, plenty of flight simulator games and apps have been created throughout the subsequent years. From commercial flight to aerial combat simulators, game developers have been continuing to improve on the game genre's graphics, features, and mechanics.

  1. 100

    #4Freespace 2

    Freespace 2
    Aliens. Explosions. Collosal starships. Freespace 2 offers the most exciting space combat ever.
    Software

    Windows

    $9.99

    Richard Wheeler
    Written on March 28, 2017
    "Freespace 2 looks like it would have good flight simulation, but don't let the view fool you, it's pretty terrible. It's unnecessarily hard to do anything worthwhile while flying and there's not even a learning curve. It's just clunky. It's not fun to get better at because there's no getting better at it. It's just not good."
  2. 97

    #5Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance

    Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance
    Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance is one of the best Star Wars games and one of the best space combat games to date. It has tons of content: 53 campaign missions, 27 fighters...
    Games

    Windows

    $9.99

    Jack Cole
    Written on January 7, 2017
    "As a big aviation and sci-fi enthusiast I've been looking for a fun flight simulator type game to compliment my serious sims. Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance hits the spot perfectly. I have so much fun pretending like I'm flying around fighting the evil empire."
  3. 94

    #6Kerbal Space Program

    Kerbal Space Program

    Kerbal Space Program is a sandbox science and space simulation video game developed by Squad and published by Private Division. It can be played on Microsoft Windows and macOS computers, and on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One gaming consoles.

    Games

    Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Mac

    $39.99

    Peter Taylor
    Written on January 18, 2017
    "This is awesome! It starts off a little easy, but gets harder and harder. It's definitely worth the money. You can actually learn some real science. "
  4. 91

    #7Microsoft Flight Simulator X

    Microsoft Flight Simulator X

    Microsoft Flight Simulator X is a flight simulation game developed by Xbox Game Studios, Dovetail Games, and Aces Game Studio for Microsoft PC. It features 24,000 destinations and even has a multiplayer mode.

    Games

    Windows

    $24.99

    Shreyas Nair
    Written on September 19, 2017
    "This is a decent port of Flight Simulator, but it's not the pro version you might expect. It works, but it's so basic, I just wish I was playing the real version. It definitely has it's pluses, but it's negatives make me want to play a souped up version of this game. It's decent. "
  5. 89

    #8IL-2 Sturmovik: 1946

    IL-2 Sturmovik: 1946
    This pack includes the original 2006 flight simulator game, which is still excellent, complete with all expansions. Are you ready to try the best WW2 aerial combat simulator?
    Games

    Windows

    $9.99

    Craig Castillo
    Written on January 20, 2017
    "This is by far the best flight simulator game I've ever owned. It has great maps, new campaigns and almost 200 fantastic missions. I wish I had gotten this before spending money on anything else. My only problem now is I don't want to do anything except play it!"
  6. 82

    #9Evochron Mercenary

    Evochron Mercenary
    Evochron Mercenary is a sandbox space pilot simulator. You can be a fighter pilot, a miner, an armada captain, a loner explorer... Anything!
    Games

    Windows

    $19.99

    Samuel Maldonado
    Written on January 15, 2017
    "The first person point of view in this game leaves a little to be desired. Also I wanted a game more focused on flight in the earth's atmosphere instead of outer space."
  7. 78

    #10Star Wars: X-Wing Special Edition

    Star Wars: X-Wing Special Edition
    The Star Wars classic returns. Blow the Death Star, dodge pesky mines and Tie-Fighters... all while you command the most iconic Star Wars starships
    Games

    Windows

    $9.99

    Matthew Ortega
    Written on February 4, 2017
    "What a relief it was to find this Special Edition of Star Wars: X-Wing. This version has excellent sound effects and digital tricks. Suitable for hours of play; a real treat!"
  8. 72

    #11Red Baron Pack

    Red Baron Pack
    The best WWI simulator. A true classic that, in the 90s, set the standards for graphics, flight modelling and overall realism
    Software

    Windows

    $9.99

    Aadhya Tambe
    Written on January 31, 2017
    "While the Red Baron Pack may be a classic flight simulator game available for windows, it doesn't hold a candle to the best. It's outdated and graphically challenged, to say the least. This sim came out in 1998, we've come light years in graphics since then. The best flight sims are the one's that keep up with technology and offer state of the art visuals."
  9. 69

    #12Star Wars: Tie Fighter Special Edition

    Star Wars: Tie Fighter Special Edition

    Star Wars: Tie Fighter Special Edition is a Sar Wars space flight simulator and space combat video game released in 1994 by Totally Games. This is the sequel to the Star Wars: X-Wing series.

    Games

    Mac, Windows

    $9.99

    Alice Cui
    Written on June 25, 2017
    "Who doesn't love a good Star Wars Sim? However, for Windows, I just can't put it in the pile of best flight sims available anymore. With Windows 10, it's constantly not working due to patches, upgrades, etc. It's just a hassle anymore."
  10. 65

    #13F-117A Nighthawk Stealth Fighter 2.0

    F-117A Nighthawk Stealth Fighter 2.0
    Before the DLC... before the VR... there was this game. And until now, no one has surpassed it as a stealth war simulator. Are you up to becoming a winged assassin?
    Software

    Windows

    $9.99

    Félix Rivera
    Written on February 17, 2017
    "I love gaming. I don't do it often, but when I do you know its a fun game to play. I found NIGHTHAWK STEALTH FIGHTER while looking for action/flying genre games and decided to give it a try. It was very in-depth, action-packed, and overall very enjoyable. You will go through tons of missions and different story lines."
  11. 59

    #14Star Wars: X-Wing vs Tie Fighter

    Star Wars: X-Wing vs Tie Fighter

    Star Wars: X-Wing vs Tie Fighter is a classic Star Wars game, which is much more enjoyable to play with someone using LAN. This has challenging real-time dogfights and more than 50 combat missions. 

    Games

    Windows

    $9.99

    Magdalena Mora
    Written on February 23, 2017
    "Star Wars: X-Wing vs Tie Fighter definitely makes me feel like a kid again. But man, oh man, is it old. The new flight sims that are keeping up with the times and cranking out amazing visuals, those deserve a spot among the best flight sims for Windows. I just can't put an old game like this up against them. I really wish we could get upgrades, redo them and give them a graphic overhaul... PLEASE!"
  12. 55

    #15Star Trek: Starfleet Academy

    Star Trek: Starfleet Academy
    A must for any fan, Star Trek: Starfleet Academy is an action/flight simulator featuring filmed footage of the original Star Trek actors.
    Games

    Windows

    $9.99

    Brian Larson
    Written on February 3, 2017
    "I don't know that I'd call this a flight simulator as much as a space combat simulator. To me, when I think of flight sims I think of MS Flight Simulator and Falcon 3. This game falls more in line with games like Wing Commander and Elite Dangerous. "
  13. 54

    #16Take on Helicopters

    Take on Helicopters

    Take on Helicopters Bundle is a simulation game for Windows. From the creators of Arma, the great military simulator, comes this helicopter game in which starting the engine will demand more of you than in any other game

    Games

    Windows

    $19.99

    Bobby Perez
    Written on February 11, 2017
    "When I went looking for a flight simulator game, I was originally looking for something with planes, but this sounded fun so I decided to check it out. Overall it was pretty fun. The level of detail in the environments was really impressive, but I've been told that some of the helicopter physics aren't entirely realistic, which was kind of disappointing to hear. There was a bit of a learning curve at first but it didn't take long to figure out what I was doing. And I really liked that it has a multiplayer option! While it isn't my absolute favorite flight sim ever, I do enjoy flying around (and crashing into) my friends."
  14. 44

    #17X-Plane 10

    X-Plane 10
    This game has almost 20 years of developement under its belt. Its a very flexible game BUT it lacks training missions. Only for the hardcore gamers
    Games

    Windows

    $49.99

    Emma Tang
    Written on June 15, 2017
    "I was excited about X-Plane 10 but honestly, I found it to be a huge let down. It's definitely not even close to being one of the best flight sims for windows. Some of the aircraft are not fully developed (lacking cockpits, etc), the airports are horrible, there are NO instructions so if you don't 100% know what you are doing.. good luck, and everything is so tricky to calibrate. I'll be getting my money back on this one."
  15. 37

    #18DCS World

    DCS World

    DCS World is a free-to-play flight simulator video game developed by Eagle Dynamics and published by The Fighter Collection. In the game, players will pilot the Sukhoi Su-25T and the North American TF-51D Mustang.

    Games

    Windows

    Free

    Albert Coleman
    Written on February 6, 2017
    "One of the easiest digital combat simulators on the market, DCS world will help you sharpen your skills in this free play platform. Based in the Steam world of gaming, DCS World offers even the most novice of players the skills requisite of an online gamer."
  16. 29

    #19Independence War Deluxe

    Independence War Deluxe
    Independence War added Newtonian physics to the space flight sub-genre. Get ready to learn about mass, intertia... It's more difficult to master than other games but it pays off
    Software

    Windows

    $9.99

    Jason Hunt
    Written on January 2, 2017
    "I definitely think that Independence War Deluxe fits the bill. It's a well reviewed flight simulator/sci fi game for the PC. It looks very technical and complex, which is something a lot of people look for in a flight simulator. "
  17. 15

    #20Dovetail Games Flight School

    Dovetail Games Flight School
    Flight School puts you straight into the cockpit with compelling, interactive missions and challenges that will get you flying like a veteran in no time.
    Games

    Windows

    $19.99

    Keith Young
    Written on January 13, 2017
    "The scenery is very realistic with a smooth "aviation" feel. The instructional content is very helpful and the missions are fun. The flying experience is superior to Flight Simulator. The learning potential from this platform is unlimited. "

Summary

Best What are the best flight simulator games for Windows
RankSolutionsTypeVotesPrice
1Elite DangerousGames 115 Paid
2X3: ReunionGames 109 Paid
3SimpleplanesGames 104 Paid
4Freespace 2Software 100 Paid
5Star Wars: X-Wing AllianceGames 97 Paid
6Kerbal Space ProgramGames 94 Paid
7Microsoft Flight Simulator XGames 91 Paid
8IL-2 Sturmovik: 1946Games 89 Paid
9Evochron MercenaryGames 82 Paid
10Star Wars: X-Wing Special EditionGames 78 Paid
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