When Microsoft announced layoffs for 5,000 employees, it also shut down its subsidiary ACES Studios-developer of the Flight Simulator gaming software. The first version of Flight Sim came out in the pre-Windows era-1982-and is one of Microsoft's oldest and most widely known products. The current version, Flight Simulator X, is supported not only by the parent company, but by a virtual cyber army of third-party software developers, many of whom supply hundreds of programs for aircraft not included in ACES Studios' repertoire. Many pilots of actual (as opposed to virtual) aircraft use Flight Sim to maintain proficiency or to preview instrument approaches at new airports before flying there for real. Microsoft told PC Magazine it remains committed to "enabling great live experiences on Windows, including flying games, but we have nothing specific to announce at this time."-Is Flight Sim worth saving? Flying Senior Editor Robert Goyer isn't quite sure. Check out our Flying Editors' Web Exclusive here.