Friday, July 18, 2014

Humble Weekly Bundle: Simulators 2

We have accepted an invitation to make Euro Truck Simulator 2 a part of Humble Weekly Bundle: Simulators 2. If you don't know what Humble Bundle does yet, they are worth checking out and maybe even bookmarking - you can get good games on the cheap, and at the same time do your bit to make the world a better place by supporting charity.

Somewhat related, our regular audits reveal that there are still hundreds of thousands of people playing the game, to put it gently, with no valid activation code. This discounted bundle may be a chance for them to finally buy a genuine copy of the game and support SCS Software in our work towards the ultimate truck simulator. To improve the proposition, we have even spiced up this bundle release with a time-limited exclusive: an all-new truck paint job DLC, with a theme quite attractive to old-school gamers. We'll make it available for purchase after the event, but for a few days the Fantasy Paint Jobs Pack DLC can only be had in the Humble Weekly bundle.

The comments below this blog post will of course be mostly about the status of the upcoming ETS2 update and overall progress...

So here is a short status report before the weekend:

The open beta for ETS2 update 1.11 has brought in a lot of feedback. We have a huge changelog of bug fixes and improvements since the open beta was launched, probably more than we anticipated, but it only proves that spending some time with the community at large providing feedback is very useful before actually going public with a game update. ETA for release? Possibly early next week, unless a new major bug is spotted. In that case, we'll test your patience again - but surely you'd prefer to get game updates with as few bugs as possible.

The new DAF Euro 6 truck is now very close to finish line at last. It had better - over a half man-year has been invested into it so far! We hope to release it as the main star of one of upcoming game updates at some point this summer. Meanwhile, the teams are working on two more truck models for ETS2, and two more for ATS!

The Euro Truck map design team working on a new ETS2 expansion - DLC Scandinavia - is working very hard even now in the middle of the hot summer. There is extensive work being done on the back-end of World of Trucks. Yet another bus model is under construction in one corner of the office, while a new trailer set is under construction on the opposite side of the office. New game features are trialled for future 1.12 ETS2 update already in closed testing... you see, we keep ourselves busy!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Twenty Tons of Sand

We are happy to report that we are proud owners of twenty tons of sand.

We also happen to own a trailer to carry it around, repeatedly, as need arises.

We have been doing it wrong. Until now. The truck sound recordings.

We have been through several recording sessions with various trucks, but we were never quite satisfied with the results. We have never managed to record the necessary variety of sounds, and most importantly, as we seldom had access to a loaded trailer; we lacked sounds with the truck engine working under strain.

Now finally, we are going to fix the problems. This IVECO sound recording session starts a new era for us, and we should now come up with much better results. With the quality bar pushed higher, we will need to go back and revisit most of the trucks we have already considered "done" - but the result should be well worth it.

We are a bit crazy, still trying to improve what some people now consider an "old game" - but we definitely do plan to keep improving and evolving Euro Truck Simulator 2 for a long time. And it is only possible thanks to your continuing support. Thank you guys! [Yes, this is where earnings from stupid things like paint jobs DLCs is invested into]

This time the final cut of the video material recorded during the sound recording is quite more extensive than usual. You can tell that the sound recording and filming crew - Irenej, Matej and Milos - all had a lot of fun during the two days of the recording session. Over 50 GB of raw sound was recorded! Out of so much sound data, with any luck, you should hear a bit in one of the upcoming game updates.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

ETS2 version 1.11 is now live in the Steam beta branch

We are happy to announce that an open beta of Euro Truck Simulator 2 update 1.11 is now available on Steam, accessible in the public_beta branch. Although we feel that we have been through a good amount of polish for this update, Steam open beta system proved to be invaluable testing ground to iron out the final build during the previous game update testing cycle, so we are trying this method again. Please note that this is a BETA, not the final patch - only install it if you want to help spotting and reporting possible problems!

As an appetizer, we have a short promo trailer unveiling this update:

Unless something unexpected is discovered in the beta, we hope that it will only take a couple of days in beta before we are ready to make the final build for Steam and retail editions of the game.

There is one more feature in 1.11 that we haven't shown you yet - we have cleaned up the Radio Player. We have revised the listing of stations, so now you can take advantage of additional filtering, add radio station to favorites and sort station by available categories.

Here are a couple of fresh images from the new areas of the map from the 1.11 update:

P.S. Metallic Paint Job Competition was concluded a few days ago. Thanks to all participants! We are in the process of picking best of the best submissions, you can expect winner announcement shortly.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

New ETS2 Paint Jobs: Canada, Poland

We are taking two more steps in our plan to create custom truck paint jobs for players in the countries where we have the most registered copies of Euro Truck Simulator 2.

Today is Canada Day! Canadians obviously happen to be a trucking nation -  Canada has made it to our Top 10 list, even for a game that is squarely aimed at European audience. It's an important reminder for us that our American Truck Simulator team should not forget to expand the game world up north eventually! Here is the DLC link: Euro Truck Simulator 2 - Canadian Paint Jobs Pack.

This week a new edition of our game is entering retail stores in Poland - Euro Truck Simulator 2: Edycja Roku. It is an attempt to attract new players to discover the genre; seasoned ETS2 players of course have been playing the game forever and don't need to go and buy it again. In cooperation with our Polish publishing partners, we have spiced up this new edition with additional paint jobs, including a new set of paint schemes inspired by Polish national symbols and flag colors. This edition requires Steam to install - adding the "mini DLCs" to the game is technically only possible for us by taking advantage of Steam's infrastructure for installation and maintenance. The DLC is also now available on Steam as a standalone purchase: Euro Truck Simulator 2 - Polish Paint Jobs Pack.

Here is a link to check out our complete portfolio of downloadable content for Euro Truck Simulator 2.

We still have a bunch of countries on our paint job to-do list - most likely a few more months of work ahead of us. For some of the countries, we really need to hurry - Independence Day is almost here! ;)

There is some grumbling here on the blog in comments sometimes that we should concentrate on different features. Rest assured that creating these optional "cosmetic" DLCs is not a distraction that would delay the other teams at SCS Software. It can keep a dedicated 2D artist here occupied full time, and we hope for a modest profit in the long run that will help us in further development of the Euro Truck Simulator 2 project. Our focus is firmly on expanding the core ETS2 game with worthwhile features and expansions, and we have some very cool stuff is in the pipeline!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Screenshot competition is rolling on...

It's about a week until our paint jobs design competition will be closed. We are still receiving some great entries from you which are reflected on the World of Trucks Editor's Pick section. We are really enjoying the images you have created. It's always incredibly hard to pick only a few winners from so many good submissions. So we have decided to increase the number of people to receive the final prize from 5 to 10.

Now, while we are all waiting for Euro Truck Simulator 1.11 update - which is still in testing (right now we have to iron out the physics adjustments) - let us show you a bunch of images from the other continent. It's a reminder that the second team at SCS is working really hard on the American Truck Simulator world:

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Digging deeper into ETS2 1.11 update

Today we have another dose of info and images from the upcoming Euro Truck Simulator 2 version 1.11 update for you.

There are several additional features simulation fans may enjoy:

Tempomat (Cruise control) received an additional mapping. Now it is possible to map the keys/buttons on the controller of your choice to increase or decrease speed, in addition to just having enable/disable hotkey. This should make cruise control act closer to what the real thing does.

We have also achieved more realistic timing for the air brake sound. Retarder indicator is lit during automatic retarder usage, and you can now configure the maximum steering angle in game options.

With the Seat Adjuster feature, we have paid more attention to side mirrors. While moving your head in the cabin, the side mirrors are now adjusting their perspective of the world rendering. It took us a while to work this out, but in the end effort had paid off with the realistic mirror perception. This should be even more noticeable to the lucky few who are using head tracking gear like TrackIR, or with head-tracking enabled virtual reality sets.

In additional little touch - now you can sell a garage or relocate your headquarters to another city.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Even more about the next BIG update

Let's continue previewing even more items that you can expect to experience in the upcoming Euro Truck Simulator 2 update to ver. 1.11. This update is under extensive testing now, and no, we still don't have a release date to announce, other than when it's done.

Today's post will be illustrated with images captured while testing deliveries around some of the new map areas: close to the city Klagenfurt am W├Ârthersee and the border between Italy and Austria.

As with all previous updates lumping together several months of continual development, the new update will touch pretty much every aspect of the game: physics, AI, simulation, and gameplay refinements.

Speaking of physics: We have added support for sway bar simulation. Refining the composition of truck suspension has given us more control over truck and trailer stability. We have also recalculated the center of gravity of all cargoes, achieving more individual behavior of the whole rig depending on what is being transported. Now if you apply too much vigor during cornering, flipping the trailer is a more likely possibility, especially for particular loads. At the same time, we still need to keep in mind that the game must be playable for people without a truck driver's license and experience, so it's about finding the right balance between providing simulation fidelity and giving the player assistance during driving.

There was also some work done to improve collisions of player's truck and AI vehicles, or situations when the truck is scrubbing the railing or other surface - vehicles now have more realistic inertia post-crash. Finally, we have re-created all scratch and crash sounds in the game. Remember our Demolition day?

On topic of sounds, while we have much more ambitious plans to improve our sound system in a considerable way in the future, we have finally listened to your feedback concerning imbalance between interior and exterior sounds, and provided a stop gap solution. For this update, where needed, we have altered and equalized the sound volume of in-cabin engine sounds and external engine sounds for all trucks.

Friday, June 13, 2014

More about the next BIG update

In a recent blog post we have shown you a few things which are coming with the next major Euro Truck Simulator 2 update, including three new cities and the Seat Adjustment feature.

Venice driving
Another feature is worth mentioning - displaying current road speed limit in Route Advisor, similar as it's available in common car GPS devices. Our Route Advisor tries to be even smarter about it - it will show *truck specific* speed limits - our game is about trucks after all. So limits for normal cars must be in some places capped by the country's truck speed maximum allowed. This feature is optional, so you can track speed limits on your own if you prefer, and hide speed limit Route Advisor icon in game options.

There were also some changes in the game user interface. The UI received a facelift to clean up its look a bit and make it fresher. This is for example what the game's "desktop" UI hub will look like:

During testing we took some more images of the new areas. We'll be showing them all over a series of blog posts. Let us start with the approach to Venice and some shots from inside the city: