The Best Helicopter Mods for MSFS 2020

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The latest 2020 release of Microsoft Flight Simulator – developed by Asobo Studio – offers amateur flight aficionados immersive and beautiful experiences flying around the world aboard their favorite planes.

Satellite image data is fed through Microsoft Azure’s AI to generate a realistic three-dimensional model of the Earth, allowing users to recreate any real-life plane flight route with incredible precision.

But planes aren’t the only kind of aircraft we want to get our hands on.

Helicopters are the best way to enjoy the scenery from above, without necessarily moving at breakneck speeds.

As of this writing, Asobo still hasn’t any official helicopters – but modders have been working on it from day one. Let’s see what they’ve come up with!


10. AirlandFS

AirlandFS / MSFS 2020 Mod

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Before getting into the helicopters, we need to take care of some things behind the drapery.

Specifically, you need to download and install AirlandFS – the magic that makes helicopters in MSFS possible without native support.

As you can imagine, plane vs. helicopter flight physics diverge by a longshot.

AirlandFS takes care of adjusting the simulation to make helicopters feel like helicopters and not just heli-looking planes.

This mod is based on the well-known Helicopter Total Realism add-on for FSX and P3D, which many training centers worldwide use to prepare future helicopter pilots.


9. Mosquito XE/XEL

Mosquito XE/XEL / MSFS 2020 Mod

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The best way to get the lay of the land whenever you visit a new city is to find a helicopter tour.

It’s an exciting and mind-blowing experience everyone should have at least once.

If that’s your plan in MSFS, I’d suggest going on the Mosquito XE.

Since you don’t need to carry passengers, this single-seat helicopter is perfect for a meditative flight over Sydney, Cairo, or Paris.

The Mosquito is one of the most affordable ways to get into flying. Before you get one of these bad boys in real life – or while you wait for your kit to arrive – you’d do well to prepare yourself in MSFS.


8. Bell UH-1H Huey – Iroquois

Bell UH-1H Huey – Iroquois / MSFS 2020 Mod

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Those looking for military experience will love the UH-1 Iroquois – commonly known as the Huey.

This utility helicopter was introduced during the Vietnam war and has been deployed worldwide by America, Argentina, Australia, and others.

The relatively few UH-1H still in service are primarily involved in Search and Rescue operations. Simulating these emergencies is one of the best ways to enjoy this add-on.

If you want to take your military might a bit further, consider the UH-1C/B Huey Gunship.


7. French Riviera Helipads

French Riviera Helipads / MSFS 2020 Mod

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Flying your helicopter around simulated landscapes is pure joy, but things can get complicated when landing.

Landing a helicopter isn’t easy if you don’t have suitable terrain or – better yet – a helipad.

This add-on places several helipads all around the French Riviera. Also known as the Côte d’Azur – the Azure Coast – this is one of the most beautiful areas in the Mediterranean.

Landing your helicopter on a private yacht sailing from France to Monaco gives your flight an air of luxury that’s hard to match.

To expand your landing options further inland, consider downloading the Monaco Heliport add-on.


6. Helipads in Northern Bavaria & Emergency Scenarios

Helipads in Northern Bavaria & Emergency Scenarios / MSFS 2020 Mod

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Côte d’Azur is breathtaking, but if you want a more realistic Search and Rescue simulation, consider these Helipads in Northern Bavaria.

This pack adds 16 new hospital heliports around Northern Bavaria – complete with functional rotating beacons, animated windsocks, and proper night lighting.

More importantly, the creator has created simulated emergencies like car crashes, hang-glider accidents, etc.

You’ll have to swoop in, pick up the victims, and fly them straight to the ideal hospital to save the day.

There is no better way to get familiar with the German landscape than saving some lives.


5. Native H-60 Project

Native H-60 Project / MSFS 2020 Mod

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One of the most recognizable military vehicles of the last 30 years has to be the UH-60 Black Hawk, developed to succeed the UH-1 Iroquois and deployed in well-known conflicts like the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This mod introduces two variants of the H-60 family:

  • The classic UH-60 Black Hawk
  • And the MH-60 Romeo

They include several different liveries, functional doors, and some extras.

The MH-60 Jayhawk is commonly used by the US Coast Guard for SAR missions, so it features a working searchlight and hoist.

On the other hand, the more militaristic UH-60 Black Hawk features armament you can toggle on or off.


4. Robinson R44 Raven II

Robinson R44 Raven II / MSFS 2020 Mod

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The Robinson R44 is a staple of civilian aviation.

It’s one of the best-sold helicopters of all time, so you’ve most likely seen it on film or even ridden one if you’ve ever taken a flight with a friend or a tour guide.

This helicopter can carry up to four passengers, including the pilot, but it’s not spacious enough for your average SAR mission.

Its excellent fuel efficiency and easy maneuverability are best used to take leisurely flights around big cities or beautiful natural landscapes.


3. Sikorsky H-34

Sikorsky H-34 / MSFS 2020 Mod

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I’m a fan of vintage items and old-school vehicles of all kinds – so flying the Sikorsky H-34 is among my favorite MSFS experiences.

Also known as the “Choctaw,” the H-34 has reliably served the United States Army, Navy, and Marine Corps since 1954.

It was designed for anti-submarine warfare, but it has been used for SAR and VIP transport too.

The H-34 and its variants have been spread worldwide, and this add-on includes liveries that
reflect this international history. There are American, German, and Japanese liveries, among others.

The unusual look of this helicopter makes it an instant favorite for me.

And I love that you can actually open the front hatch for a peek at the engine.


2. Ingenuity Mars

Ingenuity Mars / MSFS 2020 Mod

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The Ingenuity is NASA’s first aerial exploration vehicle on Mars.

It was partly a test to prove it was possible to fly on Mars despite the thin atmosphere, and it went so well, the Ingenuity is still scouting the surface to date.

This fun and creative add-on offers a different experience to the average MSFS flight “aboard” the martian drone.

You’ll get the most authentic “martian” experience flying around Devon Island, Canada, or Wadi Rum, Jordan.


1. Airbus H-135

Airbus H-135 / MSFS 2020 Mod

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I’m giving the top spot to one of the first working helicopters released after AirlandFS made realistic helicopter flight possible.

The Airbus H135 – previously known as the Eurocopter EC135 – is a modern twin-engine utility helicopter with extensive use in emergency medical services, law enforcement, and military flight training.

Thanks to its versatility, this helicopter has become increasingly common since its introduction in 1994.

You’ll have seen it countless times in films, videogames, and most likely real-life too – even if it was too far up for you to recognize it.

And now you can fly it in MSFS.

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Nelson Chitty

Nelson Chitty is a Venezuelan expat living in Argentina. He’s a writer and translator passionate about history and foreign cultures. His ideal weekend is spent between leisurely playing games of Civilization VI and looking for the next seinen anime to marathon.