Thursday, February 25, 2016

Steam Workshop support coming!

Greetings truckers!

We are working now on update 1.23 for ETS2, and 1.2 for ATS. One of the major features coming with the updates is support for Steam Workshop. This feature is a really long time coming, considering that all of our projects always were popular for user modifications.

Right now our Workshop is still in limited testing. Some of our testers are passionate modders in their own. Even during testing there are already some cool mods appearing. Here is how the page looks right now:

We are looking forward to the public beta where the community for both games will be able to evaluate and test the current implementation.

The ease of use of Steam Workshop is fascinating - you just choose the mod, press the "Subscribe" button, and the mod will be automatically downloaded and appear in your in-game mod manager. The Steam client will take care of automatic updates of the mod in the event that the creator of the mod releases a new version. What is more, if you decide to switch between computers or to reinstall your OS, all the mods will be downloaded in each new installation automatically without any need to create backups.

Each player will be able to rate any mod, so high quality mods should quickly rise to the top. You will be able to sort mods by rank, popularity, or browse the most recent ones.

There's more for mod authors

In order to ship your mod you will need to download SCS Workshop Uploader - a free standalone Steam application we have created just for this purpose. This is what the tool looks like:

Alongside the Uploader tool, we are also preparing our own Wiki dedicated entirely to mod creation process.

The goal is to have a place where everybody interested in modding SCS games will find all the info needed. It should be the ultimate source covering all areas of official SCS modding tools, their documentation and tutorials, things like for example advice on how to adapt the mods to the newest game version. The Wiki will also provide additional information about our game engine and its possible configuration options.

It will most likely still take us a couple of weeks before we reach this stage, but we are looking forward to seeing you in the upcoming open beta for ETS2 and ATS to sample the new mod support!

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Vive la France!

It's time to start showing you more stuff from the various new things we have in the pipeline. We are not a one-project-at-a-time company any more, there are several new cool things under development in our labs now!

Euro Truck Simulator 2 map team is hard at work on a new major DLC expansion for the game. We are expanding the little bit of France we have in the game now to cover the whole country. This also includes a lot of touches to the existing areas (total overhaul of Paris region for example). The changed parts of the world will of course still be accessible in the base game, even if they are upgraded visually.

Here is a couple of appetizer images from a more rural part of the world. It's work in progress still (you will notice some placeholders for new trees and shrubs in some of the shots).

Monday, February 15, 2016

Get to Drive Kenworth W900 Now!

We are happy to announce that the legendary Kenworth W900 truck is now a part of American Truck Simulator. The truck is a free DLC - the game will be updated automatically through Steam. Please check out the little movie that we have made to celebrate this event:

There are also several notable changes coming with this game update, let us preview them for you:

Since ATS release, we have heard plenty of complaints regarding relative large fines in the game. Perhaps our tester group is so much experienced already; playing our games for years, that they did not bring it to our attention that this would be a problem especially for new players. We erred here on the side of trying to make this element of the game too close to reality, catering to the veteran fans who want it tough.

On second thought, it's not really a good idea to intimidate people coming fresh to the game with crippling fines. Fines are now considerably lower in the early stages of the game, they grow larger only as the player's skill/level grows.

We have also made the detection code for speeding more forgiving, giving the player more time to adjust to a new speed limit. We definitely do not want to make players feel like the game is unfair!

More changes in this area are in the pipeline, our map team is hard at work adding more speed limit signs to proper places to explicitly zone the limits. There are also changes to the AI code that are tied to yet more map tweaks, which should further limit the problems with being rammed by overly stupid AI cars and on top of it getting penalized for it. But we will only be able to push out the changes in the map alongside the next major game update, so please have patience with us.

Finally, we have also improved the detection of 'turn on red' feature in the game. For drivers in Europe, it may be a surprise that in the US it's legally allowed to turn right at red traffic light, unless explicitly prohibited. So in the game, if you properly use your indicator to signal that you are turning right, no red light penalty is applied just as expected..

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

American Truck Simulator Demo Released

Greetings truckers!

If you are still unsure whether to take the risk and buy the game for fear of technical incompatibility, we are happy to announce the availability of a free American Truck Simulator demo. Try it out to make sure the game will work on your computer before making the purchase decision. You can grab it from Steam now, just as the game itself.

The demo is limited by the number of jobs taken and only contains the state of California, but technically it's identical with the game itself. If you purchase the game after playing the demo, you can continue driving where you have left off, as the save game stored in the demo mode is compatible with the full game.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Kenworth W900 is almost here

The iconic Kenworth W900 truck model should be added to the American Truck Simulator line-up in a few short days; it will be a part of the first small game update that we are finishing now.

This is actually the very first truck we have started creating for the game over two years ago, it has been in an almost-finished state for a long time. We were sure that this classic vehicle would be received very positively by our fans. However, unbeknown to us, it did not turn out to be the best choice for the first vehicle to approach Kenworth with during initial licensing discussions. Truck manufacturers tend to be very careful about their image, and Kenworth, as the pioneer in aerodynamics in cabin design with their T680, had a rather different idea of the ideal truck to have in our game at the moment of release. So it was back to work for us to finish the other truck first before we could hope for the licensing deal to be successfully signed.

Meanwhile, we also owe you news concerning the state of Steampunk DLC. We are gifting it now to loyal Steam followers of American Truck Simulator as promised. Our "robot" code has been processing the gifts for a few days already actually, we are however throttled by some technical issues. So far, we have managed to add the DLC to the Steam library of 53,000 players, there is still some 110,000 more DLCs to issue currently. Please have patience with us, the DLC content will automatically appear in your game shortly. As the execution on our side was not as swift as we had hoped, we are not yet limiting your chances to earn the DLC for free. Anybody following the game on Steam until and as of today will still qualify to receive it. You don't have to worry also if your game was a store pre-order and the box is yet to arrive; so long as you follow the game in time, the DLC will be added to it even if you activate the game a week or two from now.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

American Truck Simulator Out Now!

The launch process was even smoother than we had hoped, so we are happy to announce that American Truck Simulator keys will now activate the game, and that it has become visible and ready for purchase on Steam.

Actually the start is promising, we have good visibility for the game on the front page.

American Truck Simulator Release Clarifications

We are snowed-in by a ton of questions and requests for clarification from fans, and it will be best to respond to them once here in an official statement rather than trying to reply to every e-mail.

American Truck Simulator Price

We cannot dictate the prices for the box edition in retail channels, we can only suggest recommended price (we could get prosecuted for price fixing otherwise), but for your reference, these are the prices that will appear on Steam when the game is cleared for release: $19.99, £14.99, 19,99€, CHF 19.99, 1499 pуб., R$ 79,00, ¥ 2,299, 179,00 kr, Rp 249 999, RM84.00, P899.95, S$26.95, ฿699.00, ₩ 24,000, 59,00 TL, 459₴, Mex$ 349.99, CDN$ 28.99, A$ 28.99, NZ$ 29.99, ¥ 125, ₹ 1,249, CLP$ 14.500, S/.64.95, COL$ 62.000, R 325.00, HK$ 149.00, NT$ 649, 74.00 SR, 72.00 AED.

Official Support only for 64-bit Operating Systems

To make sure that we don't have to make compromises down the line, stuck forever with a guarantee to support a build of the game with 32-bit limitations, we have decided to officially only support 64-bit Windows/Linux/Mac. There are some performance benefits too, but most importantly this will allow us to cross the 2 GB barrier for in-game assets when we need to, without worrying about how to work around the limitations of addressable memory on a 32-bit system.

However, we are receiving a lot of requests from players stuck with a 32-bit Windows to give them a chance to play the game now. We do listen to you, and we are also making available an UNSUPPORTED, alternate 32-bit build of the game. You will find it on Steam, in a Beta branch named unsupported_32bit. At the time of release, it will be functionally equivalent with the 64-bit build, and it should work ok so long as you don't push the graphics setting to max. Keep in mind that it's only an unsupported temporary solution, we are explicitly making no guarantees that it will work now or in the future. At some point in time, perhaps in 6 months, perhaps in 12 months, we will no longer be able to update this 32-bit fork of the game to match the feature set of the official version of the game. Hopefully by that time, you will all have migrated to a new 64-bit OS.

Release platforms/DRM

The game is released for Windows, Mac OSX and Linux. It will require Valve's Steam platform to install and activate. Whether you buy it directly there, or purchase an activation key from the official game website, find it in a box from a bricks-and-mortar store, or get it from any other digital channel, you will always be getting a Steam key.

We know that not everybody is comfortable with the decision, but for us the benefits are very clear. We will be able to concentrate on improving the game itself, and will not have to lose time and focus maintaining an alternate update and account infrastructure. With Steam, pushing out an update of the game is a matter of one button press. We can take advantage of Steam Workshop to have a central repository of mods, and will not have to create and moderate our own alternate solution. We would really have a hard time having to create our own system to sell, deliver and update game DLCs with equal robustness to Steam's proven infrastructure. We hope that you will understand why we are making this choice.

Bonus Paintjob Reminder

Speaking of Steam and the benefits its system allows us to provide... We would like to remind you about an exclusive steam-punk paint-job bonus DLC. It can be yours in exchange for following us on American Truck Simulator Steam page. We are going to give early purchasers of the game a few extra days to allow them a chance to earn this bonus. Next week, the game will auto-magically update itself for all active followers to add these beauties:

American Truck Simulator Releasing Today

We are only hours away from the release of American Truck Simulator!

The official street date is February 3rd, but as we see it, it would be too cruel to let you wait until tomorrow morning.

We were thinking of unleashing the game at midnight Prague time. However, going through all the release process late at night and staying on alert for a while after the game gets out to see if no hot-fixing is needed immediately takes some hours. The release crew would not get to bed before 4 am.

So here is the plan: We will start the release process this evening already (CET time zone), and while we are not sure if we'll need an hour or three to press all the buttons that must be pressed, we expect that the game will unlock a few hours before midnight already. Both the keys sold in digital channels as well as keys in retail boxes will start working at the same time. Looking at the clock now, you should be able to play the game in less than 12 hours!

We'll be updating you on the situation through our communication channels, watch our Twitter or ATS facebook for quick updates.