Thursday, January 6, 2011

Your comments and speculation on Bus Driver 2

I feel that it would be appropriate to address the avalanche of recent comments.

We're getting 20-30 e-mails every day with feature suggestions, wishes for future games, gripes about problems, all kinds of input and feedback. It is absolutely beyond our man power to respond to this constant stream of messages (but rest assured that we do read them all). This blog was born out of need to have a platform to talk back to the community, as we really don't have the bandwidth to respond to individual fans. We can only hope that you are a bit happier with us now; you can hear far more frequently from us this way than during the past years.

Regarding a new bus sim game and how easy it is to build it or not - SCS is really a small company, and we just cannot double our size overnight even if we wanted to. We cannot just hire a bunch of guys off the street and expect them to be done with a new good quality game 12 months later, and then dump them to the street again. It takes experience, and it takes experienced leads spending their time teaching new guys the tricks of the trade, the specifics of our engine and content pipeline. This is especially true for programming tasks, even though it applies to map design and 3D/2D art too. A new project always means disruption to other projects under development. We know it all too well, as we often were forced to work on multiple projects in parallel to keep the company afloat.

As for the idea that we can do a new bus game cheaply ("just throw in 10 good bus models") - well with the quality bar expectations ever raising, this is far from cheap. Models of our Euro 2 tractors take over 2 months to create - perhaps 40% time is spent on exterior, but majority of time goes into interior, then there are animations and paintjobs. So we are talking spending some 20 man-months just on a few buses. Add to it the investment into world creation and programming of the game, and easily you are talking 100+ man-months. I am not even counting the need to create and animate pedestrians and passengers, surely you would expect them in a game about transporting people released these days, so most likely even more development time would be needed. So maybe 120 or 150 man-months ? You do the math on the budget needed.

This is the cost that we need to feel confident we can earn back. Well in fact as we are very conservative about borrowing money from somebody else and then having them dictate their terms to us (years of working as contractors have taught us the value of independence), we first need to be confident that we can self-finance such a project through its development, which is even higher hurdle to jump. And again as I said above, the game is either built by the current team members, interrupting our work on truck sim games, or is built by new people who are supervised by current team members, still delaying current work.

Don't get me wrong, we would LOVE to be able to create a new bus game. We are proud of the original Bus Driver, it was small and far from perfect, we had to take a lot of shortcuts to get this out on a shoestring budget, but it was actually our very first "big" independently developed driving game, after years of working only as low-paid contractors on somebody else's intellectual property. So you see where our preferences were. Hopefully one day we'll be in position to greenlight such a project, but not in foreseeable future, certainly not before Euro Truck Simulator 2 is finished, and before it hopefully makes us some money to sustain us through the next project or projects.

Pavel a.k.a. Sabre
SCS Software

29 comments:

  1. Take your time and don't rush. Your luck comes from the mods that comunity creates for your game (maps, trucks, trailers sounds) so if you want to stay afloat make games that are easy to mod. As for bus game we will se a lot of them in 2011 from other companies. Best whishes

    ReplyDelete
  2. It's good enough for me! Rock on with Euro Truck Simulator 2! It will be the most biggest and better than any trucking game (RNR is not a trucking sim, it's a one big race)! And please, don't hand the ETS2 over to ValuSoft, they are one terrible publishers! Give the game to AeroSoft GmbH, they are one of the best publishers for Simulation games! ;-)


    Se7en

    ReplyDelete
  3. Please, SCS, one more question that I have need to know, and that is will ETS2 feature a working retarder brake? That is important to every truck in Europe! There are no motor brakes / jakes like on US trucks.

    Se7en

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ets 2 screen please interior and map...

    New trailer model Schmitz,krone,tirsan,nursan?

    Double trailer?

    German truck simulator physics fix?

    sorry for my english very bad :-)))

    ReplyDelete
  5. Pavel, first off, I have to sincerely thank you for that comprehensive reply. I also want to congratulate you on your communication with the Community, I'm sure that all of your fans do appreciate it a lot!! It's just great!
    As for an eventual bus sim... sure we want one from you but we sure don't want it to lead your company to a financial catastrophe... We need you to keep on supplying us with new and always improved truck games!
    I, for one, will continue to encourage and promote you. Just keep up the great work and thanks again for explaining it all to us at length... we can now better understand that it's not THAT easy for you.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Sorry for double-posting but I just watched the new trailer and... WOW! You did an AMAZING job!!! Bumpy roads... WOW again! The environments are SPECTACULAR!! Trucks and cargos are great!
    Just can't wait to get my hands on it...! Thanks SCS!

    ReplyDelete
  7. +1 yzy!

    1. And SCS, respond to my question, please.
    2. What's the secret project?


    Se7en

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks SCS !

    I now fully understand, and you are really doing a great job of ETS2, and have done a great job with ET2 and interacting with the truck sim community.


    And don't worry, I am sure ETS2 will sell like hotcakes !

    And you've definatly got my purchase !


    BTW - I don't suppose you know when the demo of ET2 will be availible to download from the site ?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thank you very much for explaining it to us.
    I have been your loyal customer for a very long time and I will continue to promote your games.
    Keep up the outstanding work SCS Software team.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Excellent video! About Bus Driver 2, fans can help you, helping to do a game, I help if you need.

    talk with me by twitter: @Eric_hc

    thank you

    ReplyDelete
  11. Congratulations and thank you for the information SCS.

    It is good to understand the side of the game manufacturer. Nowadays it's not easy building a new game, both by piracy and competition. Therefore I am of the opinion that one should give attention to what really has the company more financial return.

    Congratulations for the work done, thanks for listening to the community of players.

    Big hug
    Rafael Brusque Toporowicz
    São Mateus do Sul - Paraná - Brazil

    ReplyDelete
  12. with the recent of posts about mvoies ECT am confused. so SCS have you told us the supirse yet? please help un confuse me.

    ReplyDelete
  13. +1 to Se7en and yzy. As a part-time computer gaming journalist, scarcely do I see such a developer team whose members are as modest and honest with their community as you are, guys. This alone is enough for me to buy both ET2 and ETS2 as soon as they'll be released here in Hungary. Just keep up the spirit and the good work! ;)

    ReplyDelete
  14. The new project wouldn't happen to involve the fact that your products are being sold through Justflight.com, would it?( http://justflight.com/newsDetail.asp?newsid=1843 )

    ReplyDelete
  15. Bus simulator 2? Hold that off, please. Us Westerners have been a little lonely that the simulators are all based in Europe so far. The last one we've had was back in '07 with American Long Haul. Even just a texture and model upgrade would be appreciative. But it's time to atleast take ONE new game back in North American trucking. Super-B Trailers would be wonderful too

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hi I am looking forward bus driver 2, I hope you have businesses and accessories such as lights and different wheels, ideally as 18 pttm my favorite game, besides bus terminals and models with axes 4x2, 6x2 and 8x2, in addition to third shaft simple and do not bend wheel and truck, would be ideal and to add new models created by users, I think buses to pttm as Irizar PB and Century, Greetings

    ReplyDelete
  17. If you didn't already, you should try to get an agreement with Steam to sell your products there, instead of using some annoying demo/unlock system with limited unlocks. Just pay, download and play. Since I got a game key for Steam after buying a videocard, I bought games that never thought on buying, and also games that I didn't even know they existed.

    ReplyDelete
  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Stop telling SCS to make another America haul or bus driver. They are busy making quality games. Have patience.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Oh sorry....I wanted to post comennt for the new trailer of 18 WoS ET 2. Really sorry

    ReplyDelete
  21. ONLY SOLD 17 BUS DRIVER COPYS????????????????????????????????? GOODNESS YOU SELL A MILLION AND HOW CAN YOU PAY JUST FOR GOING ONTO ZMODELOR, MAKING TXT FILES AND SKINNING????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

    ReplyDelete
  22. Come on ETSmoder..... where have you read such a thing.... 17 copies????? I, alone, as a bus collector, have bought 7 different versions of it....!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  23. If the westerners are impatiant for a US based Trucking game. Why not get together and mod the engine to make one? Wont be "Stealing" anything from SCS but create. Or even send them your work. Get the materials ready so they can "cut and paste"

    ReplyDelete
  24. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Isb8vtMALnA&
    1:33

    ReplyDelete
  25. I think the next game should be in Australia because it's got a 50/50 mix of euroean and American trucks plus it's got b doubles b triples roadtrains and extreme heavy haulage and it should be like alh but In aus and you travel from like Sydney Perth Brisbane

    ReplyDelete
  26. If you need professional bus driver to test the beta, I'm one and I can help you with advice. I hope that you're expecting to do an european version of Bus. There are two main type of gearbox, manula with 6 or more gear and an automatic one with 3 gear+drive, neutral and rear gear. Two type of slower Telma, like european truck, with 4 level from easy to strong braking and braking on the gearbox drived by the brake pedal. I hope that you 'ill do the inside of the bus I can give you all picture and size needed about that. Just ask. :D

    ReplyDelete
  27. You could delay a bus simulator putting the tools necessary to create the mod bus molders in ETS2.
    An example being have the option to atachable the truck.

    They are all of congratulations, hugs.

    LuciuS
    translation by google

    ReplyDelete
  28. Dupa ce terminati proiecutl euro truck simulator 2012 o sa aveti in plan si bus driver 2?

    ReplyDelete
  29. After you finish proiecutl Euro Truck Simulator 2012 and plan to have the bus driver 2?

    ReplyDelete

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.