Saturday, October 18, 2014

1.14 Update news and
Across the desert in American Truck Simulator

Euro Truck Simulator 2 team is working hard on finalizing of ETS2 1.14 Update. Stabilization of this large update had been our focus for several weeks already.

The development team's long-term assignment is very challenging. We are not just "patching" the game with bug fixes two full years after its release. We are committed to bringing you significant improvements every couple of months. That's why we prefer to call new game version releases "updates" rather than "patches".

For every update release, we need to hit a moment in time when we have a stable and as much as possible bug-free combination of game data and source code. Our team may work on 10+ major features in parallel, yet for a given game update we usually decide that just two or three of them are already mature enough for publishing. The rest needs to stay hidden from public eyes until it's ready. However, the priorities of finalizing, bug fixing, and polishing of the particular features picked for an update and working on "future stuff" in parallel are quite contradictory and really hard to follow at the same time and within the same asset database and game source code. To release an update, ideally everything should be in the "freeze" mode to minimize the danger of introducing new bugs. But "freeze" is the enemy of progress - we cannot stop working on "future stuff" for too long if we want to see good progress on major features or optimizations that often require half a year or more of dedicated time.

We still haven't found an ideal solution to this problem of trying to focus both on short term incremental improvements and on long term "big picture" evolution. It may be frustrating for the dev team at times, and it may also be frustrating for you, the players, as you have to wait longer for game updates. But we are doing what we can, and we hope that the string of future updates and releases coming from SCS Software's labs will justify a little bit of frustration. ;)

So anyway, we feel that we are very close to releasing the public beta of 1.14 update for ETS2! We will do it with the help of Steam's back-end just as during the previous public betas. The feedback loop from a public beta is really very useful in the final stages before an official release. We'd rather not promise any particular release dates, but the ambition is "days" rather than "weeks".

In case you have missed the new ETS2 update 1.14 features we had mentioned here on the blog earlier, they include tag-lift truck axles and finally the new DAF Euro 6 truck.

Meanwhile, the American Truck Simulator team is never ceasing to work. There is grumbling that we don't pay enough attention to their project on the blog. So let us wrap up the long and heavy rant post with a couple of screenshots of American desert setting from American Truck Simulator to cheer you up on the weekend...



Friday, October 10, 2014

Scandinavia - Going above and beyond...

Map production of ETS2 Scandinavia add-on is in the final stages. That's not to say it is completed, there is a lot of testing, tuning, and optimizing ahead of us. You should be aware that with the scale of the add-on, it will take months of polishing before we can consider our work ready for release.


Our map design team is taking great pains to get the feeling of the region right and to make the Scandinavian cities and environments as they are in real life.


Even though our programmers keep improving our tool chain for better efficiency, such detailed environments are harder and take longer to build than what we were used to only 2-3 years ago.



Of course not every part of the map can be made true-to-life based on a real location, but we sprinkle the world with such locations generously. Our hope is that such attention to detail will boost the fun with exploration of the world, especially for our players in Scandinavia who know these places very well.


Meanwhile, the quest to offer dedicated paint liveries for truckers in the countries where our game sells the best continues today, with the release of French Paint Job Pack DLC for Euro Truck Simulator 2 on Steam. Check it out!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Raise your wheels!

Greetings,

In a recent blog post we have hinted at one neat feature that is coming with the 1.14 update for Euro Truck Simulator 2- tag-lift truck axles.

We have expanded the mix of available chassis for purchase from three to six. Chassis 6x2, 6x2/4 received tag-lift versions. It is not just a cosmetic visual gimmick, the physical properties of the vehicle do change with a lifted axle.


With appropriate chassis, you will be able to raise or lower the truck axle on demand with default key "U".  Naturally, the lifted wheels don't take any wear over time.

In the future we intend to make tyre wear a larger portion of the gameplay that affects player's economy. In addition to that, lifting axles don't have to be restricted for trucks only but apply to trailers axles as well.



Monday, October 6, 2014

It's time to check your personal World of Trucks page!
It's been updated!


In our ongoing effort to enhance our World of Trucks service we have just launched World of Trucks Achievements.


Current achievements set is primarily related to already existing WoTR features. Please log in to your account and check them out! It's highly likely you'll be able to get one or two with minimum effort right now.


At first it may sound like nothing too special is going on, World of Trucks is still only a place for game screenshots and not much more. However, for us it marks a day of very important service code base integration that is getting built exclusively for World of Trucks.

In case you haven't registered yet, any genuine retail or digital key as well as registration via Steam link will work (but only once!).

Stay tuned for more news about World of Trucks evolution. With future updates, it should become clearer that our ambition is way beyond the current feature set - gameplay to be delivered through and inside World of Trucks!

Friday, October 3, 2014

Euro Truck Simulator 2 retail edition update 1.13 is ready

The recently released update 1.13 for ETS2 is now available for retail users on the ETS2 update page.

The main feature of this update is support for Steam achievements. Achievements aren't available in the retail version, so if you want to add this bit of additional challenge to the game, you will need to activate your retail key on Steam. We've published instructions on how to do it on the World of Trucks site.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Hard at work on ETS2 1.14 now

We have quite a task ahead of us now to finalize the testing of update 1.14 for Euro Truck Simulator 2. The big star of the update will of course be the new Euro 6 DAF XF truck tractor!

We may have been a bit over-optimistic in our estimates for 1.14 release date in our earlier blog posts, but finally we are entering the wider testing stage. We will only release the update when we deem it solid enough, but the wait should be worth it - some pretty neat things are coming. A hint of one of the new features is in the screenshot below:


We have some new help too - a new member of SCS Software's team. Our company has been growing slowly but steadily over the past year (and experiencing some growing pains in the process we must admit), and we are very happy with all the new guys and girls coming on board. Usually we don't publicize new hires, but in this case it may be interesting to make an exception. Some of you may recognize the nickname of 50keda from ETS2 moding community. We are proud to welcome 50keda to our company now as a full-time employee!


Wednesday, October 1, 2014

New ETS2 Paint Jobs Pack: Germany

To celebrate the upcoming German Unity Day on October 3rd (it's been 24 years, can you believe it?), we are introducing a new Steam DLC for Euro Truck Simulator 2 - German Paint Jobs Pack.




 


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

ETS2 Steam Achievements are live now!


It took a longer than anticipated testing process to produce the Steam Achivements Update a.k.a Update 1.13 for Euro Truck Simulator 2, but finally, quite late tonight, we are here with the release on Steam!

The central feature new to this game update is the introduction of Steam Achievements, as described in our earlier blog post.

The rest of the changes is relatively limited and non-critical, these are only very local "diffs" implemented on top of the previous stable 1.12 and 1.11 versions:

Code
  • Steam achievements
  • Added functionality to unbind keys/buttons/axes in game ui
  • Added cruise control grid option
  • Cruise control speed limited to truck speed limit speed (if enabled)
  • Quickload and quicksave
  • Bindable keys/buttons for increasing and decreasing of radio volume
Data
  • Fixed speed limits in some countries (Belgium, France, Poland, Slovakia)
  • Fixed license plate generation in some cities (Graz, Klagenfurt, Ostrava)

From this point of view this update should not break too many mods, but your mileage may vary. If you are playing the game with mods, it is always a good idea to make backups of your profile folder structure to safeguard older save game files, and be aware of means to revert back to earlier version if you deem it desirable. This is actually very easy on Steam - we are using the system of Steam betas for keeping older releases of the game accessible.

Retail variant of this game update, of course without the Steam Achievements, will be made available in a couple of days.

For the next game update to version 1.14, the changes in code and game data will be much bigger. We are merging in changes to the game world, especially the northern parts that need to be altered for having good connections to the future region of Scandinavia. A lot of game and engine code has been changed, and 1.14 will roll in various improvements that the programming team has queued up for release over circa past 3 months. And last but not least, finally the new Euro 6 DAF truck tractor is almost ready, with the last round of iterations based on feedback from DAF Trucks N.V. getting us very close to desired quality. Testing all this mix of changes and additions is a complex procedure, please have patience with us!

Monday, September 29, 2014

SCS at IAA Hannover 2014

Quite an expedition from SCS Software journeyed to Hannover in the north of Germany at the end of last week to visit IAA Nutzfahrzeuge 2014 - the biggest Commercial Vehicles show in Europe.

We have reported from the show in real-time on SCS Software's Twitter, but we don't have that many followers there, so maybe a short recap here won't hurt.


We have taken hundreds of gigabytes of reference photos, and more importantly, we have talked to number of very important people in the transportation industry and from truck and trailer manufacturing companies. Hopefully some of these initial contacts will grow into fruitful discussions and down the road to noticeable improvements of Euro Truck Simulator 2.

The good photos we took would fill twenty long blog posts, here is only a very short selection. If there is interest from the community to see more photos, we may put them somewhere more appropriate, like SCS Software's Facebook page, so let us know!