Hype Performance Group has made quite a name for themselves with the release of their freeware H135 and subsequent H145 for MSFS.
The H145 quickly became a milestone for the community and it’s, without a doubt, the most complex helicopter in Microsoft’s sim.
The team has been hard at work since the beginning of development and, despite my initial skepticism towards the product as it was released – mostly because of the price at which it was marketed – the truth is that HPG delivered.
And now, we are only days away from the release of the H160, which, again, is not exactly a simple helicopter. Quite the opposite.
I have to say I was quite surprised, in a way, to find out that the team was working on an H160, considering how “new” the model is. But, on the other hand, it makes sense. HPG did a tremendous job with all the systems and electronics that bring the H145 to life, so it does make sense that they leverage that knowledge to bring yet another helicopter of the family to MSFS.
From a business perspective, it would be dumb not to do it.
So, how is the HPG H160 for Microsoft Flight Simulator? Keep in mind this is not a review and, honestly, I am not sure I will release one as I don’t know the systems well enough to make a comparison with the real deal. Pretending to would be an insult to you, the reader, and to Hype Performance Group, so I will limit myself to talking about what I can, based on what I know about the helicopter.
Well, first of all, it is gorgeous. The model is absolutely stunning, inside and out. The H160 comes in 2 versions: civilian and luxury and they look fantastic. No surprises there.
Flight dynamics are pretty much as expected as well. The H160 is a highly automated aircraft with a lot of aids and, just like with the H145, it shows. It flies pretty smoothly and it’s very stable.
It’s hard to get any surprises and most flights will be pretty uneventful if you keep things under the envelope. There’s not much more to say here, really. “As expected” is exactly what HPG would probably like to hear and it’s pretty much what it is. At least from what I know of the H160.
Oh boy. It’s an Airbus Helicopter with Airbus avionics and systems.
If you know how complex the H145 is, you have an idea of how the H160 is. As I said, I will not pretend to be an Airbus specialist. I do not fly the real deal, so I can’t compare it with the real deal.
At least for me, systems are believable enough when comparing notes to videos and documentation that I can get immersed in the simulation of the helicopter.
I have to be honest here, though, I am not a fan of complex systems. When things get this advanced, helicopters are just no fun to me. I am not trying to take away from HPG’s amazing job at simulating the intricacies and complexity of the software and systems. They have done a stellar job and they deserve the credit for what they have done. I can appreciate the work they had – and how far they have come since the release of the H135.
Great job, guys.
I’ve never flown in an H160 so I can’t make a comparison with the real helicopter, but the sounds seemed to be a bit too quiet which kind of takes away one of the amazing feelings of the low-frequency sounds caused by flying these machines as you push them a bit too hard, and that blade slap comes in.
It’s not a deal breaker for me but if you are someone that finds sound to be important, be aware.
If you are looking for a highly automated helicopter, at the level of modern airliners, the H160 will offer you all that. There’s not much more I can say in this preview, really.
It does what it says it does in the tin. It flies the way I believe it’s supposed to fly, systems are complex – and amazing – the artwork is incredible. Again, I wish the sounds were a bit more present as I feel it takes away from the simulation but the real H160 may be like that so I will give it the benefit of the doubt.
If you enjoyed Hype Performance Group’s H145, get the H160. You will not regret it.
The HPG H160 will be sold exclusively at the company’s website, so you can find it here.