X-Plane 10 for Mac. What is the best flight simulator for mac

The flight simulator is a kind of simulation video game that tries to mimic the real experience of piloting and aviation. Players can take over the cockpit of their favorite aircraft to practice maneuvers in the air or take part in combat drills, while experiencing incredibly realistic graphics with original cockpit interfaces and air terrain.

The best free flight simulators

As air travel in 2020 is almost impossible, it is tempting to take to the virtual sky. Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 is probably the best way to do it right now, but the game costs at least $ 60 plus the cost of additional planes. And that probably won’t change anytime soon.

As with most simulation games, flight simulators have a long shelf life. For example, X-Plane 11 still costs $ 60 despite being three years old and has over 350,000 DLC. At these prices, you will need the best free flight simulators to take to the skies cheaply.

There are many free games, including free flight simulators. Our list includes civil flight simulations that are as realistic as possible, as well as combat-focused simulations where the developers turn a bit of realism into action. While a game like Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 has more bells and whistles – not to mention better graphics – these titles will at least allow you to immerse yourself in the world of flight simulation without spending any money.

The best free civilian flight simulators


Available in: A web browser

If your internet service has a strict data limit or your computer just doesn’t have enough space, GeoFS runs entirely in your browser. In this free PC game you can take off and fly over the world with one of 20 planes using a joystick, mouse or the best keyboard. You’ll probably never run out of places to visit as the game features over 30,000 different runways. Do you like playing on the go? You can also fly with your mobile device.

The first throttle setting and take-off is extremely simple. You can quickly customize the controls at any time and also view helpful instructions for your maiden voyage. If you can’t fly multi-engine planes, you can always switch to the more traditional propeller model. The simulator even includes a hot air balloon, helicopter and paraglider – just don’t get started on the paraglider from 30,000 feet above the ground.

The free version supports massive multiplayer interaction. At any time, you can come across another player flying in the sky or a real-time passenger airliner. Weather conditions also change based on real-time data from Open Weather Map. This means that rain or sleet reflects what pilots are currently enduring in the real world.

Want to see where you’ll meet other players? GeoFS has a live map that tracks all pilots. Just right-click on any plane and select the starting altitude and you will instantly appear at the same place.

Although the aircraft models are surprisingly detailed, the surroundings are ugly. The city below you is less like a collection of buildings and more like a patch of green and beige. For € 10 a year – around $ 12, depending on the conversion rate – you can subscribe to the HD pad set GeoFS gets from Bing. It’s still a browser game, so don’t expect great visuals. The set of HD blocks corresponds at most to the details of the aircraft models.

The upside is that while the controls are limited, they’re easy to use so can’t be blamed in this regard. It’s not that it’s a bad flight sim, it’s just very limited compared to the others.

X-Plane 10 for Mac

X-Plane is the most powerful and accurate flight simulator available for personal computers, but it not only runs on Windows; the version of X-Plane sold here at X-Plane.com runs on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. In fact, X-Plane is mainly developed on Mac computers.

In the past, we used to call Mac our secret weapon. Here’s what owner and developer Austin Meyer has to say about it:

X-Plane development team

People keep asking me, “Austin, how can you compete with the bigger companies? You can’t stay in the flight simulator business! You’ll be out of business by the end of the year! ” (Never mind they’ve been saying this since introducing X-Plane in 1994!)

Part of the answer to this question is that I have a secret weapon that helps me develop the X-Plane at a much faster pace than potential competitors. While other teams are struggling to keep their organization and computers running, my team and I are able to work quickly and freely without any computer issues holding us back, unlike almost everyone else who uses computers today.

Of course, I can’t say what this secret weapon is because I don’t want to reveal my competitive advantage!

Bottom line: X-Plane 10 Global is 100% Mac compatible. All you need is a high-end iMac or MacBook Pro. We do not recommend “Mac Pro” as a top iMac will get similar or better performance for less money.

So go ahead. Give it a try. Download Mac Demo today and experience the flight simulation as it was meant to be – incredibly accurate, amazingly beautiful, and running on your Mac! Or, if you are ready to upgrade to the full version, order X-Plane from us and get a copy of X-Plane 10 Global, guaranteed to run on Mac OS X, Windows and Linux.


X-Plane is my flight simulator because it offers great flight models, excellent graphics, smooth FPS and realistic weather and lighting.

I was determined to get my private pilot license years of using the X-Plane have saved me a lot of money.

… In the air, I was sure of what I was doing – because I had already been there the night before in X-Plane!

—Philipp J. Münzel, CFI

X-Plane’s Plane Maker software allows our Embry-Riddle team to very accurately assess the performance of the model and subsequent modifications.

—Professor Ray Bédard, Embry-Riddle Aviation University

I landed a plane unassisted on my first flight! My instructor. He said that after 3,000 hours of teaching, he only had one student who ever did.

While the hugely popular Microsoft Flight Simulator is no longer available for Mac, these are the best Microsoft Flight Simulator alternatives for Mac in 2022.

X-Plane 11 Is Professionally Slick

If you’re looking for a realistic “outside the cockpit” scenery, X-Plane 11 is sure to offer some of the most realistic simulations of the well-known parts of the planet. As you fly to new places, the scenery changes accordingly. And if 24,000 airports just don’t fit you, X-Plane 11 offers over 33,000 destinations or departure points. And if the need arises, you can even start an aerial mission from the middle of the ocean aboard an aircraft carrier.

The movement of waves and their effect on the ship are taken into account. You can even opt for a more “out of this world” experience in space mode, allowing you to leave the mothership of Space Ship One on a mission to re-enter Earth.

X-Plane is powerful and versatile, with extensive features and realistic flight modeling. Since it was not originally designed as a game, but as an engineering tool to study flight dynamics, it has very realistic handling characteristics.

Cessna 172 in X-Plane 11.

Cessna 172 in X-Plane 11.

There are even random weather conditions that will challenge your flying skills. They use real weather data and are as accurate and realistic as the graphic features mentioned above. Like “system crashes” that can hit you at any time, prompting you to use all your wits to take control of an emergency.

This does not mean that the flight simulation itself is not up to scratch. Graphically, their 3D cockpit offers a decidedly authentic experience, and using the blade element theory to calculate each plane’s simulation function makes it one of the most realistic on the market. Incidentally, this feature is used when users design their own planes. Moreover, many large aerospace companies actually use Laminar Research’s X-Plane technology in their design process. Indeed, such links with the aerospace industry permeate the overall professional nature and layout of the package.

X-Plane is based on the blade element theory, which determines the behavior of an airplane by analyzing the forces acting on individual components. One of the added benefits of this approach is the ability to model complex designs for a dizzying array of aircraft, including:

  • Zeppelin Hindenburg. In terms of length and size, the Hindenburg was the largest aircraft ever to take to the air.
  • V-22 Osprey VTOL. This tilt-rotor aircraft for vertical take-off and landing was born from the ashes of a failed Iran hostage rescue mission in 1980.
  • Harrier Jump Jet. Another VTOL vessel, the Jump Jet, can take off from very tight areas such as a car park roof or a small open area in the woods.
  • Spaceship One. It is a spacecraft that made the first manned space flight by a private entity in 2004. It also won the famous X Award for $ 10 million.

The X-Plane has everything that flies out of the ground or flies in the air: rockets and gliders, helicopters and jets. It uses predictive modeling that predicts the aircraft’s flight behavior, providing the most realistic flight experience on the market.

More X-Plane 11 Add-Ons And Extras Still To Come

Perhaps one of the best things about the X-Plane 11 bundle is that it’s relatively new, having only been released in 2017. So conventional wisdom should say that an already neat, professional package can only get better with the inevitable updates and additions that will be available. And the package, which is already very detailed, is likely to get even more detailed.

Lockheed Martin’s “Prepar3D” Is Definite Realism

Perhaps another simulation package with clear links to professional aviators would be Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D (pronounced “prepared”). Moreover, since Lockheed Martin has established an agreement with Microsoft to develop the program, all Microsoft Flight Simulator users can take advantage of their add-ons in Prepar3D, automatically giving it a huge potential audience. So, if you’re one of those users, this simulator package might interest you – but be careful, P3Dv4 switches to 64-bit, making some older free add-ons incompatible (mostly pointers).

Perhaps a tempting feature of Prepar3D is the fact that it also offers a range of land and sea vehicles as well as several aircraft including the Lockheed P-38 Lightning, Lockheed Constellation and Beechcraft King Air 350 going a step further, offering users the ability to swim deep under the oceans planets in the submarine Neptune.

A screenshot of the plane in P3Dv4.

A screenshot of the plane in P3Dv4. Source: DocScott from P3D Official Forums.

While this package is ideal for individual users (who may wish to obtain the Prepar3D “Developer Network” version) to demonstrate the professionalism of the program, it is worth remembering that universities and aviation schools use the “Academic” version of this program, while corporations, including military departments , use the “Professional” version to assist in the training of professional pilots. Whichever license you choose, the experience will be as close to “real” as possible.

There is also great support and additional downloads with additional choices of planes and scenery, as well as an active forum with over 8,000 members. Other products are available from Prepar3D, for example Model Placer, which allows users to place buildings and scenery in the program. Realism is definitely at the heart of Prepar3D.

Works on: Windows (7, 8, 10) and Mac (with Bootcamp).

There is currently no demonstration of Prepar3D, however it can be purchased directly from the Lockheed Martin website here. Most FSX add-ons work with Prepar3D, so testing them is a matter of trial and error.

You can watch the presentation of the latest version of the program 4 in the short film below.

Due to the sheer number of planes and locations that have been provided by users around the world, Flightgear has an incredible amount of flying options and choice.


The WarBirds aviation combat game by Total Sims has been around since 1995. Take to the skies under the yoke of dozens of legendary WWII planes. The single-player mode consists of 20 training modules, 12 lightning-fast missions and five different free flight modes. Moreover, you can play offline for free as long as you like.

But the real meat of this game is the online game, which comes with a monthly fee to keep playing. You ride raids with squadrons of other real world players, recreating many famous battles of World War II. Total Sims is a bit quirky with Mac support; Their frequently asked questions relate to Apple’s GameSprocket technology, which came to light when Classic Mac OS gave way to OS X over a decade ago. But it also shows how long WarBirds has been on the platform.

Falcon 4.0: Allied Force

Graphic Simulations has been creating flight simulators for the Macintosh since the early 90’s. Falcon 4.0: Allied Force is the latest iteration of the classic F-16 Falcon flight simulator, taking you to the Balkans and the Korean Peninsula on realistic combat missions.

Arm your plane with realistic weapons and ammunition, then fly on missions deep into enemy territory thanks to a dynamic campaign engine that changes everything every time you play.

Moreover, even though War Thunder was released almost 8 years ago, they are still updating the game with new planes, maps and missions.


GeoFS is a free cloud-based flight simulation that you can use in your Mac browser.

There are 20 planes to choose from and you can control them with a joystick, keyboard or mouse. There are over 30,000 different runways to choose from, so you won’t be bored in a rush.

You can even fly a balloon, helicopter and paraglider.

GeoFS is very easy to use compared to most flight simulators, and you only need to use the “+” or keys to control the throttle.

Other planes you see in the sky are also being piloted by other players, so you can also play with your friend in real time.

A really nice touch is that the weather conditions change as the real world weather changes as GeoFS is linked to the Open Weather Map to add an extra special level of realism.

You can play GeoFS for free, although you can also pay as little as $ 9.99 a year for higher resolution images.

Even in HD, the graphics aren’t great, but considering you can play it for free in any browser, GeoFS is an impressive flight sim for Mac users with all the skills they can try.

geofs flight simulator mac


YSFlight is as cheap and cheerful as it gets when it comes to flight simulators, but it’s free, easy to learn, and runs on Mac.

YSFlight was created by Japanese student Soji Yamakawa as a project in 1999 and allows you to do everything from flying a private jet to fighter jets.

There are over 70 planes to choose from. You can also shoot down other planes and play with your friends in multiplayer in the “East versus West” battles of the Cold War.

You can even host online events such as air shows, squadron competitions, and even races.

YSFlight has a dedicated community of followers who have modified the game, so there are many planes, environments and user-created scenarios.

You can customize the controls in YSFlight to use the joystick as well.

YSFlight is completely free and the handy flying school allows you to get started quickly.

YSFlight for Mac

Wheel Stand Pro S Compatible with the Saitek Logitech Pro Flight / Cessna Yoke system; Yoke support; Deluxe V2; The flight system with wheel support only is not included.


The main reason why it’s so great is because it’s completely open. It is infinitely expandable, with many different planes available for download from the official site, as well as terrain and airports. Rather like pizza, you take the base and then you can add whatever toppings you want.

In terms of performance, like everything, the faster the Mac the better. While it runs on my 2007 Macbook it’s quite slow at times, so I’d recommend having something with good graphics and CPU.

Moreover, as it is open source, it is completely free, which is amazing. At least with Macs, there’s no need to spend hundreds on a flight sim when there’s a great free one on offer. Instead, you’d better spend your money on a good joystick (like me) for the best flying experience possible.


It is the most disappointing of the three of them by a distinct mile. I know you can’t expect this much performance from an iPhone, but nonetheless, I believe they could have done better. You take off without a clear indication of where to fly, control is limited, and when this is your first time it is extremely difficult to keep the plane in the air.

While the details on the planes are good, the number of options to choose from is very limited. More planes would be much better if it was this type of flight simulator, you really want more options. The same goes for the runway. There is only one you can take off from and the scenery gets pretty boring after a while.

The upside is that while the controls are limited, they’re easy to use so can’t be blamed in this regard. It’s not that it’s a bad flight sim, it’s just very limited compared to the others.

The overall ease of use of the Steam Edition makes it attractive to longtime fans and newbies alike, right down to the simple “Download-Install-Run” of primarily getting the program from Steam.

Frequently asked questions

What are flight simulators?

The flight simulator is a kind of simulation video game that tries to mimic the real experience of piloting and aviation. Players can take over the cockpit of their favorite aircraft to practice maneuvers in the air or take part in combat drills, while experiencing incredibly realistic graphics with original cockpit interfaces and air terrain.

How much do flight simulators costs?

Overall, the games themselves can cost you anywhere from


There is also a small combat flight sim called DCS World that you did not include in the combat flight simulators.

Yes, a little thing is easy to forget 🙂

In fact, it seems the age of really good flight simulators is over.
I’m old enough to remember the Red Baron and Secret Weapons of the Luftwaffe, now ancient DOS games that required the creative use of the precious 640KB of conventional RAM.
They were primitive but fun.
In my opinion, the first real breakthrough game in the combat flight simulator was IL2 Sturmovik. Undoubtedly, a great deal of its charm was that it introduced a hitherto unknown field to Soviet aircraft, but otherwise it was so far stunning.
But, unfortunately, everything is falling apart.
I remember getting what I thought was a descendant of IL2 with Cliffs of Dover, but I was never able to get the game running properly on any computer (and my systems, even now, are solid enough to meet the system requirements). Perhaps in my youth, I would have spent thousands of hours of research tweaking my system to get the software running, but time becomes more valuable as I get older. I was hoping the next iterations could turn out to be better by buying the CLoD Blitz, but even there I found that it doesn’t handle the joystick easily.
Simply put, the whole flight sim thing has gotten more of a hassle than it should be. And subsequent games like War Thunder and World of Warplanes just come out as cheap arcade versions.
I would turn all the great graphics into pure SWOTL fun in the DOS version.

SWOTL is a real benchmark. The cartoon graphics were amazing! The way you could change positions in the B17 to fend off enemy interceptors was brilliant! The sounds were made right. The gameplay itself sets the bar (for me) in terms of simulating air fights. You are the first and only one I’ve seen talking about SWOTL. I was 14 at the time. Do you remember the wheel decoder? I lost mine and rode my bike to Office Depot, fully prepared for a fork of over $ 20. The seller actually opened the box and gave me a code wheel for free. The funny thing is my dad suspected I stole it. He had a hard time believing that a stranger who was an employee opened the game and gave me the decoder itself for free.
Today I am 44 years old and a father of two boys. They’re good, but if they came with a story about open goods and a seller who broke the product just to help .. yes, I understand my dad’s disposition…
Sorry to keep bothering you. You talked me into that scream. I feel happy knowing this story because I have never talked about it before.
PHANOTEK’s FYI GUNSHIP III on the playstore and GUNSHIP SEQUAL WW2 are at your fingertips.

I remember spending time in RS. I was amazed to see the DOS based FS1 flight simulator. I bought it right away even though I didn’t have a computer to run it finally got a computer and enjoyed this wire frame simulator for hours. I was at least and bought a lot of flight simulators after that, with lots of purchases of newer and faster computers. I love this hobby.

I played the Janes f18, which in my opinion was the best flight sim in the late 90s after playing the others, but the DCS world takes a lot of detail from the Janes f18 and takes hornets to a whole different level of detail, graphics and realism. I can’t get enough of the DCS world. Best of the Best and probably by a good margin. Continue the excellent work of Eagle Dynamics. I believe that I am speaking on behalf of the majority of flight sim enthusiasts.

up to $ 80. The price is primarily determined by the level of authenticity and expansiveness that the game provides. With that being said, there are some other costs beyond the game itself that aviation enthusiasts choose to purchase for a more realistic gaming experience. These devices include joysticks, virtual reality headsets, and home dashboards.

What is the best flight simulator?

It really depends on what kind of experience you are looking for and the price you are willing to pay for it. Many aviation and flight simulation enthusiasts claim that X-Plane 11 is the best all-in-one flight sim, but the game offers no combat experience. If that’s what you’re looking for, then maybe you prefer a sim like War Thunder or one of the other combat simulators we’ve listed.

What do I need to play a flight simulator?

Flight simulators can be played on many different devices. Depending on the platform the game is running on, you will need a video game console such as Playstation 4 or Xbox One, or a PC / Mac with a sufficiently powerful graphics card and processor (depending on the complexity of the simulation).

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About Jarrod West

Jarrod first became fascinated with the world of points and miles as the perfect way to visit dream destinations without breaking the bank. On his first big prize trip, he spent 3 months traveling around Europe, financed almost entirely by credits; while flying in premium cabins and stopping at 5-star hotels along the way. Now, it has a mission to help others achieve their travel goals and enhance their travel experience. Jarrod has been writing about credit cards and travel loyalty programs for 4 years and his work has been featured by Travel and Leisure, The New York Times, Matador Network, Yahoo Finance and US News.

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