AAs many of us stayed home last Friday, Jerry Dyer bravely confronted Storm Eunice by broadcasting live passenger jets landing at Heathrow Airport from the roof of his van. Dyer’s YouTube channel, Big Jet TV, Attracted more than 200,000 viewers and became an improbable hit. If you now find yourself new to aviation commentary, the good news is: there is a small but dedicated community of flight simulator streamers that bring viewers into the cockpit.
For those who want the thrill, some of these broadcasters offer a front row seat for things like dragging the plane through turmoil or pulling a tricky landing for drama, tension and ultimate glory. Reluctant to risk, other streamers roam around the Aegean Islands, viewing the computer-generated Mediterranean’s digitized sun and the hollow ocean.
Most streamers play Microsoft Flight Simulator. They love the game for its lifelike graphics and geographical accuracy. Players take control of the aircraft as if in a real cockpit; The game can be played in real-time, which means it takes five hours to travel from London to Cairo during the game – in real life. To most people in the community, flight simulators are the only type of game they play. One was reported to have spent $ 2.5m On a full-size cockpit set up to enhance their (and their viewers’) plane-sim experience.
Thomas David Cochran, 61, Billings, Montana 757 Spy on Twitch – Started airing five years ago. “I completely accidentally made a mistake in the live broadcast. I watched a three or four-hour-long video and found that there are people like me who play with fake planes. Cochran has been in the air for over 40 years, working as an anchor and reporter for local news stations across the US. After the “monster of layoff” caught him he decided to take up full-time streaming. “I was able to repackage my 40 years of over-the-air transmission and put it on Twitch.”
Broadcasting was not Cochran’s first career choice; He first wanted to be a pilot. But he had a close look, which prevented him from getting his dream job. “At the time, recruitment managers had more people who wanted to be pilots than seats in the cockpit, so they could choose a lot.” After he was fired, Cochran returned to gaming, immersed himself in Assassin’s Creed, and entered flight and space simulators.
Cochran described his streams as a meeting with “friends who love flights and explore the world without buying a ticket.” Despite the occasional mockery of his age, Cochran enjoys his new career. “Putting aside being called Grandpa was the best experience in the world for me.”
Matthew Smith, 28, Oxford – Chevy 94 on Twitch – Started flight-sim streaming in his university final year. For five years now it has been his full-time job. “If anyone tells me that I’ll still do this by 2022, I’m just kidding. It’s a dream. “
Smith airs Mondays to Fridays at 3 pm and says his love of the job is the reason for his success: his passion for aviation has expanded into the real world. “I’m going to LA in May and I booked to go on a certain type of flight,” he said. “Through the flight simulation community, I met my partner, I met my best friends. Microsoft took me to Seattle for a preview of their latest flight simulator game.
Jamie Pine, 21, Chestnut – London Controller on Twitch – Has been streaming flight simulation games since I was 11 and has been streaming for two and a half years. Pine Live’s streaming career began with the first lockdown blow. Now, along with Chewwy94, Pine is one of the UK’s largest flight simulation streamers. Pine discovered his interest in aviation by going on vacation with his family. “As a kid, I used to go to the airport and get on a plane. My family did not enjoy traveling by plane, but I loved it.
Fabio Guardini Miguel, 46, Columbus, Ohio – Called TheFlyingFabio On Twitch – One of the newest streamers in the scene. Before he started streaming a year ago, Miguiz was a flight instructor who became a real pilot, flying business jets before going on to teach. “Kovid ate my job, so I had to do something else, and then I turned to stream,” he says.
Compared to his fellow streamers, Miguiz takes a more educational approach: “Most streamers fly from A to B. I just did not want to fly, I just wanted to teach”. He aims to improve aviation safety, looking at what can be done differently by recovering from accidents that happened in real life. “We go out and fly that plane in a simulator and put ourselves in the same situation. We make some different decisions to see if we can change the outcome. There is so much to learn that can keep other people alive.
As his streaming career grew, Miguz had no plans to return to real-life aviation. “I’m done jumping. I’m a full-time streamer now. ”