Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Greece - Research Trip

A few members of our Euro Truck Simulator 2 map set on a journey to Greece a few months back. Their quest? To gather references and inspiration to create the Greece DLC for our #BestCommunityEver as accurately as possible. Now, we interviewed them about their trip and how it benefited them!

The team consisted of Ilona, Michal, Karina, Jakub, David, and Artur. In the course of eight days, they journeyed through Greece, from its southern reaches to the north, exploring islands, coastal stretches, and inland areas.

"Our first destination was the drier and rockier Crete. The climate is reflected in the architecture, which is full of balconies and loggias shaded by awnings. Greece struck us as a very diverse, culturally and historically interesting country with lots of monuments and important sites. We mapped some of them in more detail, such as the Corinth Canal, the Meteora Monasteries, and the Rio-Antirio Bridge. As part of our travels, we also visited an olive farm in the Messenia region, where we learned more about the process of olive oil production, a symbol of Greek cuisine and culture," Michal shares with us.

The majestic Meteora Monasteries were probably one of the team's favourite places, as Ilona agrees with. "What I liked most about Greece was the omnipresent smell of diverse vegetation and the distinctive landscape, which I hope we will be able to capture in the DLC. The biggest gem for me was definitely the Meteora Monasteries," says Ilona.

As the team confirms, it's a big advantage to see the country for yourself before working on implementing it into the game. "It was definitely beneficial to see the places I'm going to be doing on the map live. A lot of details that you don't notice on Google Maps, or don't stand out as much, often give a completely different dimension and feel to a place in person," says David.

Starting our expedition fueled by the expectations set during our preliminary research, Jakub unfolds the tale of the team's voyage through Greece's varied terrains, which he fell in love with. 

"When we were doing our preliminary research, we saw that some of the roads we looked at weren't exactly exciting. But after travelling through the country, I can say I was pleasantly surprised. Driving through the mountainous parts of Greece, there were great views one after another. Even the roads between fields offered something nice to look at. If I were to choose one memorable place, it would be the Rio-Antirio Bridge. It stretches about 2880 metres long and is surrounded by mountains and sea, with dark ominous clouds in the sky and sun peeking through them. That was the first time it came into our view and it was a dramatic scene," says Jakub.

One of the reasons we visit the countries in person is to get a general feel of it that would be difficult to obtain through internet research. "One of our tasks was to look at what type of houses are most common, so we could choose everything that needs to be made by our 3D artists to best represent the country. And we were quite surprised how difficult that was. It’s not an easy thing to do generally, as every country has different building styles etc., but what we learnt was also that almost every single house was different," Jakub shares with us.

Artur's journey through Crete not only opened his eyes to the vibrant tapestry of Mediterranean island living but also unveiled the rich landscapes and cultural flavours essential for infusing our game with genuine authenticity. 

"It gave me important aspects that must not be missed in the game, that I would not have noticed otherwise if I had not seen them with my own eyes. You could see that life in Greece is very much geared towards tourism and olives, which were absolutely everywhere. I was very surprised on the trip by how different the north and south of Greece are in terms of landscape. The more southern areas were dominated by bushes and olive orchards and the north by forests and traditional rectangular fields. For me, the overall combination of sea, hills and mountains is absolutely divine and I can't wait to see what it will look like in our game," Artur tells us.

We cannot wait to bring you more news from this upcoming map expansion as it continues to be developed. Until then, stay connected with us and all the latest information through our social media channels, make sure to follow us on X/TwitterInstagramFacebook, and TikTok. If you are looking forward to trucking in this map expansion, make sure to add the Greece DLC to your Steam Wishlist!

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