Microsoft has released the latest aircraft in the Famous Flyer series, the Antonov An-225 Mriya for Microsoft Flight Simulator.
The Ukrainian-built An-225 Mriya, which means 'dream' in Ukrainian, was designed by Antonov in the 1980s as a heavy-lift transport aircraft. The project was initially called Mk. 401 but was later named the An-225 since it could carry up to 225 tons of cargo.
Two An-225s were scheduled for production, but Antonov only completed one. It made its maiden flight in December 1988 and set 110 world records, including being the heaviest aircraft ever to take to the skies.
Mriya was badly damaged in February 2022 during the Russian invasion of Ukraine and tentative plans are in place to bring the aircraft to the sky again by piecing together parts of the destroyed An-225 with the second airframe.
The virtual An-225 was developed by iniBuilds with the help of actual An-225 pilots and is part of Microsoft's ongoing digital preservation efforts. It features a highly detailed interior and exterior with six liveries and a flight deck, which has been recreated with all the six crew stations: captain and co-pilot, flight engineer, electrical engineer, navigator station and radio operator. It also sports an EFB (Electronic Flight Bag) with a payload manager, animated cargo doors and custom sounds recorded using real-world reference materials.
The An-225 is available in the Microsoft Flight Simulator in-game marketplace on PC for $19.99 (approx £16.60). All proceeds will go to the Antonov Corporation to rebuild the An-225. It will be available for Xbox Series X|S and on Xbox Cloud Gaming starting in late March.