Sunday, June 26, 2011

ETS2 Truck Customization UI

We have talked about truck customization several times recently, and now we are ready to tease you even more! ;-)

The user interface screen for truck customization is still not fully finished, but you can already see the wealth of options and flexibility that we have in mind. These shots actually happen to be the very first images showing a glimpse of the user interface style that we are going to use in Euro Truck Simulator 2.


Saturday, June 25, 2011

CD Project News

It looks like our Polish publishing partner CD Project really wants to give the truck game players in Poland an absolutely stellar treatment. It started with the gift-packed Special edition of Trucks & Trailers, but that's far from all. If only we could find more such dedicated distribution partners in other countries...

Together with Scania, CDP will feature Trucks & Trailers at Master Truck event taking place in the city of Opole, Poland, July 15-17. This looks like such an interesting show that SCS Software will be sending a few people there as well to check it out, and perhaps even show some new stuff that we are working on. Here is a press release announcing CDP's and Scania's cooperation.

Equally exciting news, CD Project is launching a Trucks & Trailers competition with epic prizes, including a Logitech G27 steering wheel controller and cool gadgets from Scania Griffin catalog.

Friday, June 24, 2011

A few more customization close-ups

This is an image from a presentation that we are preparing for licensing discussions with a key international lighting and after-market parts manufacturer. Keep your fingers crossed for us!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Good start in digital distribution for T&T

We were not sure what to expect from the start of Trucks & Trailers on the market; T&T is a small game with narrow focus, and we are well aware that the gameplay concept is alien to a significant part of the truck sim games fan base.

Well, the early reports are quite optimistic! The game has scored very high placements in top sales charts on several digital distribution portals, like GamesLoad in Germany (where the game's title was altered to LKW-Rangier-Simulator) or on Orange portal in France (where the French distributor Anuman gave it an even more generic title - Truck Driving Simulator).

We can only hope that not only general public, but also the hardcore truck sim fans will understand the purpose of the game and its place and purpose in the ecosystem of truck simulators, and that sales from our own own websites at www.trucks-and-trailers.com and www.scssoft.com will keep growing beyond the few hundred sales accumulated so far over the launch week.



Saturday, June 18, 2011

Truck customization in ETS 2

We have made great progress on implementing the truck customization feature in Euro Truck Simulator 2 during the last week. Over the past half a year, we have built tons and tons of 3D models of upgrade parts to choose from, but the code wasn't yet in place to easily try them and swap them in the game. Finally when we want to make a screenshot with some tricked-up truck, we won't have to painstakingly hand-edit things, instead we will swiftly tune the truck to our liking. For now just a couple of teaser images...


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Trucks & Trailers demo out!

Get the Trucks & Trailers demo from the official website at http://www.trucks-and-trailers.com.

We hope that many people among truck game fans will find the game fun and enjoyable. T&T is not trying to be a complete simulation of all things in trucking, quite the opposite, it concentrates just on one particular skill - being able to navigate the truck through tight spaces, especially on reverse gear. Think about it as a sort of game of solitaire for people into trucks - quick to get engaged and overcome a few challenges in the game and then move on again.

This is not a game that could teach you how to drive a real truck. None of games could really make such a bold claim. However, we believe that Trucks & Trailers may become a very useful training tool for helping wannabe truckers connect those reverse-a-truck-skill neural paths in the brain. For this purpose, for bringing together the worlds of gamers and real truck drivers, the game may be even more suitable than the "big" simulators requiring long hours of play time to get anywhere.

Today we are launching the demo protected by the same technology that we have used for  years. Unfortunately we don't have the alternate payment methods like PayPal ready yet. We tried hard to prepare them for the digital distribution launch, but even after burning a few weeks on this, the system is still not fully implemented. An updated version of the demo will be available later.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A little promo in Czech Republic

Our friends from SvetSim have asked us to help them promote a little competition that they are organizing in cooperation with Czech publisher of the game - Comgad, awarding 3 copies of Trucks & Trailers to the winners. Here is the competition page. If you live in CZ or SK to qualify, and if you have followed the community translation effort or seen the gameplay movies, it's probably worth trying to grab the game for free...

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Trucks & Trailers graphics stress test

The game should start appearing on the store shelves towards the end of next week, and we were contemplating what to put here on the blog to further promote it. We have shown a lot already, you may already be too tired to appreciate another set of regular run-of-the-mill screenshots after seeing so many various scenes from the game and the recent gameplay video.

So we thought we would show you something quite different, something that would be in line with the motto of this blog - to show you things "behind the scenes" and "under the hood" as they happen during development.

So here is a very short video with footage from a graphics stress test that we did to understand how putting animated pedestrians into the scene will influence graphics performance.

Keep in mind though that staying within desired graphics performance is only one aspect of having people in our games. We need to address the problems of developing believable AI code for pedestrians, and gameplay consequences of potentially putting them into areas where the player's vehicle could hit them.

In Trucks & Trailers, we used the simplest solution of having pedestrians in the game only as a sort of decoration, putting them only into areas not accessible by the player's truck. Implementing pedestrians in our future games remains an open question.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Friday, June 10, 2011

Bus Driver ported to Mac OS X

This may not be so exciting news for many of you anticipating Trucks & Trailers and especially Euro Truck Simulator 2, but today we have reached an important milestone in SCS Software's history.

Our game Bus Driver has just become available on Mac App Store!

Many of our core fans have never forgiven us for not creating a true bus simulator in Bus Driver, just "a" game about buses, but good old Bus Driver achieved its design goals perfectly, it was well-received by the younger-age target group, and has been selling reasonably well given its conservative ambitions.

The technology milestone reached today means that from now on we should be able to release our future games for Mac OS X as well as Windows PC (and perhaps re-release a few older games as well). Hopefully being able to reach more customers on the new platform, and increasing sales this way,  means that we'll be able to justify investing even more effort into our future projects.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

On the way to Wien, Austria

Wind turbines. Some people think they are going to protect us from global climate change, some people dislike the way they alter the look of the landscape. There is quite a wind farm just behind the Slovak border in Austria, and one must wonder which factor is more on the minds of inhabitants of Bratislava when they look out of their windows every day...

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Trucks & Trailers gets special treatment in Poland

We have received news that our Polish publishing partner, CD Project, is going to offer a special edition of Trucks & Trailers to please the most hardcore truck game fans in Poland. Here is their message:

Trucks & Trailers Special Edition, apart from the game itself, will contain a printed version of manual, a sticker, alongside with an "L" sized T-shirt and a must for all respected drivers - a trucker cap. All this packed into a stylish box, which is going to be a perfect match for whole composition. T&T SE will be available across the best multimedia stores and e-shops in Poland with a suggested retail price of 89,99 PLN (22,50 €).

The Special Edition will have it's premiere in Poland along the normal edition (which costs 49,99 PLN - 12,50 €) on 17th June, Friday.

Here is the link to CDP announcement:
http://www.cdprojekt.pl/news/5692/Trucks___Trailers__ujawniamy_cene_i_sklad_edycji_specjalnej

More news on the official polish blog:
http://www.trucksandtrailers.pl

Monday, June 6, 2011

Development of Premium interior for ETS2

The Premium tractor interior is also shaping up, and we are now ready to show you the progress so far...

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Trucks & Trailers gameplay video

The following short movie was required for approval process with Scania. It is a sort of visual "executive summary" - you can get an idea about the game and the looks of the R-series tractor in it quite quickly just by looking at this short clip.

We are happy to report that the video helped us get the final approval, and at the same time we have received inspiring feedback that we should change a few things, like adding side-skirts to the vehicle.


We have decided to share the video with you now. It is unedited, raw footage from the game, no cuts, no additional sfx or music - this is what you will get when you launch the game, and try out the simplest tutorial challenges.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Bratislava castle

A nice day and night comparison showing the castle in Bratislava, Slovakia in Euro Truck Simulator 2.


A short explanation to people always asking the same questions again, and again, and again...

1. We don't know the ETS2 release date yet. We would like to release the game as soon as possible, as every extra month of development represents a lot of money invested into the game, and frankly we are quite tight on money now. We have already exceeded to budget we had originally planned for the game, and with the costs ballooning, it's a big question if the game can ever make us back the development costs. We are now running on emergency reserve funds, hoping that profits from the little game of Trucks & Trailers is going to buy us a bit of time to complete ETS2. On the other hand, we'd like to ship the game as feature complete as possible, our long-term prospects depend on creating quality games. With such conflicting goals, in the end we may have to do some compromises both ways, but we are still pushing ahead.

2. We don't yet have anything to show about new weather effects, pedestrians, new road signs, etc. If we don't show something or don't talk about it, it is not because we are mean and want to keep it from you, but because the feature wasn't implemented yet. The game is far from complete, you need to understand that. Spamming or trolling the comments on this blog really doesn't make any difference.

Thanks for your understanding.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Trucks & Trailers website unveiled

Today is a good day to launch the official Trucks & Trailers website!



We are only about 2 weeks from the time when the game should start appearing in stores. The digitally distributed version (the time-limited "demo") is not ready yet, but we hope to have it up on the website by the middle of the month.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Progress on Magnum interior

The 3D model of the dashboard and inside of the cabin is pretty much complete and ready to start UV work and creation of the textures...

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The benefits of fanbase

For a long time, SCS Software used to be quite a closed company. We worked behind closed doors in a little dinky office, and we worked very hard on the games. But we would only come to surface very seldom - to release a game or two per year at most - and then lock ourselves back in the office again to work on another game. We would read message boards and e-mails from our fans, but there was no two-way communication, and no feedback loop.

Things have changed a lot now that we have this blog, several Facebook pages for our recent projects, a YouTube channel, a Twitter account, the GetLocalization experiment, and most importantly now that our attitude is that fans are our most important asset.

This attitude change bears fruit for us, too. After asking our fans for recommendation for a distributor in Brazil, today we are signing a deal with Techdealer, Brazilian games distribution company, to release a bundle of our older games in the country. Hopefully Trucks & Trailers, which is a logical choice as it has already been translated into Brazilian Portuguese with your help, will be discussed next.

Yesterday we have received good tips for distribution opportunities in Bulgaria, and we will try these contacts to see if we can get official coverage for our games there. It turns out that our fans know their countries' state of games market much better than we can ever do, so with your help we can explore things that we would now have the capacity to try and research on our own.

There are still quite a lot of countries where our games are impossible to buy in stores, and where we know we have fans, but where we haven't managed to identify proper partner to talk to about distribution opportunities. To mention a few, we know we have tons of fans in Romania, Greece and Turkey, but we either don't know whom to talk to there, or if we do know, our attempts to establish contacts there failed so far. Perhaps somebody reading this blog may be able to provide another useful tip for us?