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This game is releasing with 10 Discs. Here's why

The new version of Microsoft Flight Simulator, which is known colloquially as Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020, is releasing this August 18 for PC and Xbox. It's looking like it's going to be a welcome addition to the franchise for any fans who felt let down by the last entry in the series, but the latest news about the game may have some fans scratching their heads.

According to a report from TheGamer, the European physical edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator will be quite the robust package. In a rather unprecedented move, the game will be released in a version spanning 10 whole discs. You're not wrong in thinking that sounds a bit excessive, but there's actually a pretty good reason behind the number of discs for Microsoft Flight Simulator.

Aerosoft Forum Administrator Mathijs Kok explained that the giant 10 disc edition of Microsoft Flight Simulator is being made specifically with convenience in mind. That may sound counterintuitive when you think about the fact that the company is expecting gamers to basically buy one of those CD travel cases in order to play the game. However, it's being made to accommodate fans who want the full Microsoft Flight Simulator experience, but also have much slower internet.

While Microsoft Flight Simulator will be available to download as a digital copy, it sports a pretty hefty file size, as you can imagine. In order to save gamers with slow internet connections the hassle of waiting a zillion years to download the game or even having the download stall out in the middle, Aerosoft is electing to make this massive physical edition a reality.

So sure, the idea of a 10 disc game sounds pretty ludicrous in this day and age, but it may be the best alternative for fans in Europe who just don't have the bandwidth to go for the digital edition. There are a few things about it that still sound kind of silly, though. 

Aside from the sheer size of the physical edition, there's also the fact that the discs are utterly disposable once the game has been downloaded. That's right; once you've downloaded all of the information from Microsoft Flight Simulator's 10 discs, you no longer need to keep them. Unless you're planning on uninstalling and reinstalling the game at some point in the future, there's no point in hanging onto these discs after download. At that point, they've fulfilled their purpose and have basically becomes commemorative Microsoft Flight Simulator drink coasters.

So what is included in this game that makes it worth putting on nearly a dozen discs? Well, quite a lot, actually. Microsoft Flight Simulator aims to be quite the substantial entry in the genre, as it actually contains just about every airport on the planet. According to reports, the new Microsoft Flight Simulator will feature around 37,000 different real world airports. Around 80 of those will be rendered in much more minute detail, due to those being the world's most commonly-used airports. This is how the developers decided which ones to really focus on.

According to Microsoft's Phil Spencer, the developers included "over 2 petabytes of geographical data" to accomplish Microsoft Flight Simulator's level of accuracy and realism. With that level of detail and the sheer number of airports rendered in the game, it's no wonder why there are so many discs. That's a staggering amount of content to put out there. 

While the physical edition will give players the base game, including the simulator itself and all of the airports, it will not include any post-launch content or updates. Those will have to be downloaded from the internet as per usual. However, downloading a patch sounds like it would take a much smaller and more manageable file size than this giant game.

There will presumably be different file sizes for the different versions of the game, as well. According to Eurogamer, there are multiple editions of Microsoft Flight Simulator on the way. These are the £59.99 standard edition, a £79.99 deluxe edition and a £109.99 premium deluxe edition. Each version of the game includes an extra number of highly-detailed airplane models, as well as more "handcrafted international airports." These allow for a wider range of customization, depending on the version of the game that you buy.

The various fan reactions to this news have been mixed. Some people see this as a good sign that the game is expansive and has much more content than previous flight simulators. Other people are more dubious, with one person tweeting, "It will probably fry your PC so we shipped it in 10 discs to suppress it."

Regardless of the mixed reception, all that attention to detail must mean it's better than that one terrible Steam game with the planes flying through the ground, right?