I'm not really familiar, but a friend of mine is really big into MS Flight Simulator and he says that there is a way that you can have live controllers vector you around. I guess you hook up to the internet and there are other players out there that are connected as controllers. I'm sure other people can let you know more about this.... Anthony! Sorry I couldn't be of more help.
Your right about the live controllers. Microsoft FS2000 (not FS2002 yet) is able to be hooked into either "Squakbox" or "Roger Wilco" and played with real live ATC guys vecotring you around as you fly whatever.
There are actually guys and gals that sit in thier living room from all over the world and do this for fun at night. Sort of like this board. Go figuare.
I'm not sure of the webistes for either utility for FS2000, but www. flightsim.com is the premiere flightsim aviation website and there is info there.
For a 21st century update on the TRACON theme, there is http://www.atcsimulator.com/. I bought this a few months back, and it will certainly inspire new respect for real controllers. All is well with four airplanes, but ten has your heart racing and at twenty the seizures begin. This has voice recognition, so that you can "talk" to the aircraft, but the phraseology is very fixed, and the planes all talk back with the same monotone computer generated voice. If you're into it, it's worth it.