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Flight Simulator UK and Ireland update is so gorgeous it’s making me homesick

Microsoft has released a significant Flight Simulator upgrade for the UK and Ireland, which enables you to take an aerial tour of castles, landmarks and football stadiums.

In a post on the Xbox Wire blog, Microsoft announced the free World Update 3, which offers a “dazzling flight experience” over the region.

“From seats of royalty to centres of finance, bustling metropolitan hubs to sprawling farmsteads and cliffside villages, the splendor of the United Kingdom and Ireland is on full display with dramatic upgrades and visual enhancements,” Microsoft writes.

Microsoft notes the special care afforded to Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, London and Oxford, as well as the addition of five new airports.

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There’s also a host of cultural additions throughout the nations, with 70 new landmarks in total. There’s manors and homes of historical significance as well as castles, churches and drive-thru restaurants. There’s palaces, bridges, cathedrals and, yes, some football stadiums.

There’s Brighton Pier, Stonehenge, Buckingham Palace, Snowdonia National Park, Stamford Bridge, Anfield, Blackpool Tower and the Humber Bridge. As a Brit living in the United States, I can safely say this is the first time footage from a video game has made me feel homesick.

You can see the gameplay footage, captured in 4K below.

Microsoft says the update is joined by three new activities, including an Iconic Flight in the Northern Islands and a pair of new Landing Challenges. One’s in the Shetlands and another in Southeast England.

The update is available now from the Marketplace. You’ll need to ensure the simulator is up to date beforehand. The game itself has been a revelation since its arrival last year and was awarded 4.5/5 stars by Trusted Reviews.

Our reviewer praised the way the game “sets a new benchmark for photorealistic visuals,” and now more of the UK and Ireland benefits from this brilliance.

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