Home > Windows 8 > Hidden flight simulator in Windows 8

Hidden flight simulator in Windows 8

Update: Works on Windows 7 too, if Internet Explorer 10 is installed!

If you work with Microsoft products for a while you may remember that Excel 97 contained a very special feature: the flight simulator. This was a hidden feature, a so called Easter egg, which could be activated only with a series of certain steps, but after that you could enjoy a real-time simulation of a 3D world, which was super cool 15 years ago:

excel-97-flight-simulator

According to the Easter eggs is Microsoft products article in Wikipedia, Microsoft formally stopped including Easter eggs in its programs as part of its Trustworthy Computing initiative in 2002.

In contrast to that, thanks to the JavaScript Team, Windows 8 contains (at least) one, actually the reincarnation of the flight simulator. According to urban legends, it was originally a proof of concept demo application which showed the capabilities of the Chakra JavaScript engine, so that it can render a so complex 3D space in real-time (compare that with Doom for Chrome which required the Native Client).

Another nice feature, beside the performance, that this app shows the deep integration of sensors in the platform. If you play this game in a tablet with built-in sensors, you can control your plane by simply moving and rotating your device. That’s a wonderful experience in 3D, even if you already played a race car game in a tablet.

Because this Easter egg is buried deep in the core of the system, you cannot activate it with a magic key combination, instead you have to write some code to start the game. Copy this code into a text file named flight.js and save it to your desktop:

var r = "";
var e = "536F7272792C207468657265206973206E6F204561737465722065676720696E2"+
        "04D6963726F736F66742070726F64756374732E0D0A546869732061727469636C"+
        "6520776173207772697474656E206F6E203120417072696C2032303133203A290"+
        "D0A687474703A2F2F67796F72677962616C617373792E776F726470726573732E636F6D";
for ( var i = 0; i < e.length; ) {
  var l = e.charAt( i ) + e.charAt( i + 1 );
  r += String.fromCharCode( parseInt( l, 16 ) );
  i += 2;
}
WScript.Echo(r);

Then open a Command Prompt and start the script:

wscript flight.js

This is final result:

flight-simulator-tablet

My best score is 10413 and yours?

 

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  1. April 9, 2013 at 11:45

    Awesome things here. I’m very glad to peer your article. Thank you a lot and I’m having a look
    ahead to contact you. Will you please drop me
    a mail?

  2. April 10, 2013 at 13:25

    Hah! Didn’t know about that one, will have to give it a try when I get home. Great that you can control the plane by rotating the tablet.

  3. Maureen
    June 13, 2013 at 06:49

    April mop

  4. June 18, 2013 at 07:27

    if not on a tablet, what are the controls??

  5. asdad
    August 10, 2013 at 10:50

    I only get a rick-roll message. What am I doing wrong?

  6. Abbas Khalid Ai
    August 12, 2013 at 00:14

    Sorry there is no Easter egg in Microsoft products. This Article was written on April 1, 2013

  7. Taylor Lee
    August 13, 2013 at 22:39

    wscript is not a command

  8. Taylor Lee
    August 13, 2013 at 22:47

    This SUCKS. There is NO Easter eggs. It gives me a April fools message!!!

  9. Morgan Bovi
    August 16, 2013 at 19:43

    I see what you did there :)

  10. Andres
    August 23, 2013 at 02:01

    ha ha ha (sarcastic)

  11. NO suck information
    September 18, 2013 at 17:01

    Clever!

  12. October 10, 2013 at 04:43

    How do I activate Direct X? Everything is there, but there’s not a lot of polygons, and it lags a lot! By the way, this is totally crazy! Thanks for this one.

  13. ok.
    October 21, 2013 at 05:20

    bye bitch

  14. XYZ
    December 24, 2013 at 10:42

    You better remove this article or I will……………..

  15. Braedon
    January 27, 2014 at 23:13

    I was like, “Weird i thought microsoft stopped adding easter eggs.” Then I open it, “That little son of a—“

  16. February 21, 2014 at 15:58

    This is amazing! I can’t believe microsoft have put so much effort into just one Easter egg.

  17. Foresight
    April 24, 2014 at 12:40

    Well played sir, well played. You had me going all along. I even tried the script…

  18. jerry
    May 23, 2014 at 22:44

    LIES well played i should have read the comments!

  19. Adam
    June 29, 2014 at 19:23

    Well, you tricked me… I feel stupid now XD

  20. Mark
    August 7, 2014 at 10:44

    This article was written on APRIL 1st…

  21. Rick
    August 7, 2014 at 16:16

    all I got was the message that no easter eggs in Microsoft products.

  22. stella
    August 9, 2014 at 00:44

    Only get a message there are no easter eggs in MS products.

  23. Ahmad Alfani Handoyo
    August 19, 2014 at 10:57

    What a very hidden Easter egg indeed. April fools

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