X-Plane Flight Simulator/Introduction
X-Plane is the world’s most comprehensive, powerful, and challenging flight simulator for PCs (personal computers) using the operating systems of Windows, Linux, or Mac. At first glance X-Plane may seem like a game, especially since it's sold next to other flying games, but once you try to figure out how to make the simulated 747-400 fly on autopilot, you will realize that without clearly labeled buttons or a flight planner like Microsoft Flight Simulator X, you will need to google some real flight manuals and watch a few YouTube videos to get the plane going the way you imagine it. X-Plane's claim to fame is the accuracy of its flight model, with the AAA title using 'blade-element modelling' in contrast to the 'look up table approach' employed by other flight simulator software.
X-Plane can also be used as an engineering tool to predict the flying qualities of fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft with incredible accuracy, once you've read enough engineering books to figure out how to do so; but to get you started before you have finished your degree in engineering, it includes a few aircraft you can try to fly spanning the aviation industry from the Sikorsky S–76 (more Googling and YouTubing) and Cessna 172 to the Space Shuttle and the B–52 Bomber. Additionally, some 2,000 additional aircraft models can be downloaded from the Internet.