Frontier Pilot Simulator lets you live out your fantasies of working as an up-and-coming cargo pilot transporting goods across an alien world. But the life of a space trucker isn’t easy. The development team over at RAZAR will test your mettle and push your frontier skills to the limit. Those who manage to persevere will experience an emergent, mission-driven story and a real-time economy with free flight and trading. Got your attention? Then buckle up and get ready to lift off — here’s seven things you need to know about Frontier Pilot Simulator.
Choose Your Ride
So what will you be piloting, exactly? Currently in Frontier Pilot Simulator you can choose from three detailed vertical take-off and landing, or VTOL, aircraft. There’s the maneuverable Scarab, small but effective. The mid-sized Ox, with fast speed and sharp handling. And the big guy, the heavy, smooth-handling Ballena. You can upgrade all three with tons of optional parts, customizing their look and feel to your preference. Of course to do that you’ll need money, and that’s where the real meat of the game comes into play.
Frontier Pilot Simulator could be fairly described as American Truck Simulator on an alien planet with a flying truck. An evolving, player-impacted economy exists on this brave new world, with thousands of different cargo items available for pickup, delivery, and profit. Passengers are also a viable source of income, and you’ll find no shortage of folks looking for a safe and fast way to get from place to place. Trading posts and bases will grow and shrink depending on the health of their economic status, often as a direct result of trade routes you choose to exploit.
Express Elevator to Hell
Of course it won’t be as simple as point A to point B. The planet you’re on is volatile and will be a challenge in itself. Wind conditions shift constantly, and affect how your craft handles. Hazards like electrical storms, radiation zones, and even volcanoes will crop up across the planet. This world will kill you without a thought, and look good doing it thanks to a dynamic weather system that makes everything feel very alive. There’s no combat in Frontier Pilot Simulator, but you’ll definitely be fighting the environment regularly, especially if you’re going for fast deliveries or valuable cargo in dangerous areas. It’s valuable for a reason, after all.
Should You Choose to Accept It
If you prefer a little direction in your sandbox open world, have no fear. Frontier Pilot Simulator currently has two storylines that unfold through specific missions you can complete for various characters. You’ll learn more about the planet you’re on, its flora and fauna, and possibly even get caught up in conflicts between smugglers, corporations, terrorists, and security forces. RAZAR aims to make the storytelling in the game emergent and an organic part of the world, and this part of the game is continuing to evolve with feedback from the active player community.
The weather’s effect on your ship is noticeable in large part due to that last word in the game’s title. As its name indicates, Frontier Pilot Simulation is a simulation with a capital S, literally and figuratively. A detailed physics model simulates every imaginable aspect of flying a VTOL sci-fi craft, and the game supports full flight stick and throttle setups for players who want the full immersion experience. Mastering approaches, landings, and picking up tailwinds for faster travel times will take up a lot of your early play time. With patience and ever-improving skills, you’ll be an expert cargo jockey in no time.
One of the most potent tools at your disposal as a frontier pilot is the augmented reality view, or AR view. When conditions are hazy, dark, or otherwise sub-optimal, switch to AR view to see a wireframe depiction of the world including all kinds of valuable information. Terrain, wind speed and direction, structures, resources, nearby alien creatures, and more all in crystal clear digital form. It may not be as pretty as normal view, but all that realtime data can save your life in thick fog or a nasty windstorm. Using AR view does drain your aircraft’s energy rapidly, though, so use it sparingly if you’re low on fuel.
You may have noticed I mentioned alien creatures when talking about AR view. That’s right, alien life is not only present in Frontier Pilot Simulator, but can be a hazard all on its own. Sure, a huge whale-like sea monster makes for nice ambience and a reminder you’re not in Kansas anymore. But flocks of flying extraterrestrials can quickly become obstacles to pilots who aren’t keeping a steady eye out for the planet’s native inhabitants. Beauty and wonder can become deadly in a heartbeat in this game; it’s all part of keeping you on your toes.