I have always been a fan of speed and racing games has always been my forte. If you can see my Steam library, you will notice that that I have a lot of racing-themed games. There is nothing like the adrenaline rush going through my brain as I speed past my opponents as I head for the finish line. In a word, when I comes to games I do not like to take things slow so if there is any driving involved (GTA for example), you can be sure that I will always drive at top speed to reach my destination.
So when SCS Software, a Prague-based development company famed for their vehicle simulation games released Euro Truck Simulator 2 back in January 2013, initially I couldn’t be bothered with it. This is a real-life simulation game which means that traffic laws will apply. And I thought, where is the fun in that? I mean, if I want to take a slow drive and obey all traffic rules I might as well drive my car to the next town to visit my nana.
It was not until I read the reviews a few months later that I realize that hey, maybe there is more to ETS2 than just traffic laws and driving slowly. For people in the Steam community were praising the game’s beautiful graphics, realism, mod support and more. So during the next Steam Sale, I grabbed the game when it went on sale and I was hooked to it ever since. From the get go, I found that this has got to be one of the most beautiful games ever made.
How can you not fall in love with this view?
Everything about it is eye-catching, from the details of the trucks to the European towns and cities and everything in between. And this is in vanilla. I soon found out that there are mods that makes ETS2 even more beautiful aesthetically and I will get to that later in the article. The online community for ETS2 is so huge that you can be sure that there will be tons of mods for every aspect of this game.
…or this view? P.S: I got this truck from a mod
Basically, the goal of this game is to deliver precious cargo with your truck across continental Europe and its surrounding islands. Unlike ETS1, you would not have enough money at the beginning of the game to buy your own truck. You must therefore start your trucking career by doing contract jobs for other companies. Once you have enough cash, you can buy your first truck and thus unlock free roam mode and better paying jobs. Bank loans are available if you want your first truck fast but you must be able to pay back the loan. But that’s not all.
ETS2 allows you to be able to establish your very own trucking empire by buying up garages across Europe and hiring drivers to work for you. You will need to buy trucks for your drivers to allow them to roam around to look for jobs. There is also the RPG aspect to this game. After each delivery, you will gain experience points depending on how well you executed the delivery. These points allows you to gain levels which in turn allows you to unlock new trucks, parts and accessories. Each level gained will also give you 1 skill point, which you can then use to get jobs that pay well in terms of cash and experience points.
Your very own garage, if you can afford it.
So basically all you have to do is to drive your truck to deliver cargo from one point to another. Sounds easy right? Well I have to say it is far from it, especially if you are a first-timer and you are still getting used to the game. Besides having to obey European traffic laws, you must also try to avoid collisions with AI traffic. Not only you will get fined, your cargo might also be damaged and that will lead to income and experience points penalty and deduction.
But don’t fret, because once you get used to the game, you will find yourself driving in a relaxed mood, listening to your favorite radio streams and taking in the view. And that is exactly what I have been doing. The only stressful part of ETS2 is trying to make the delivery on time. But don’t worry about that either because the game is designed in such a way that you will be still be able to make deliveries on time even though you have to drive the entire journey within the speed limit.
The view from inside the truck
For me personally, the best part of the game is its free roam mode. If you have done delivering cargoes or if you are not transporting anything you will enter free roam. This mode allows you to drive your truck around freely to explore new places. Why I said this is the best part for me? This is because I can spend time roaming around Europe, visiting beautiful simulated European cities and towns and stopping near the sea, lakes or bridges to simply enjoy the view.
And that my dear readers is the best feature of the game. I wasn’t kidding when I mentioned that ETS2 is one of the most beautiful games I have ever played. The developers went all out to make the game’s graphics as attractive as possible and they really pulled it off. Often times I find myself stopping by the roadside, turning on photo mode and simply capturing some screenshots of mountains, seas, and buildings to be saved in my computer.
Remember I mentioned that there are free mods available online that can make ETS2 even more attractive? These mod developers go all out to make it possible due to their strong love of the game and believe me when I tell you that there are tons of mods for every aspect of the game. Want to change trailers or add vehicles to AI traffic. Well the ever popular developer Jazzycat has got you covered. Jazzycat has been responsible in creating a lot of beautiful AI traffic and trailer mods that they are a must-have in every new ETS2 game. Another must-have are the map mods. These mods add new towns and cities that are otherwise unavailable in the vanilla game. The three most popular map mods are ProMods, TSM Map and RusMap.
Besides that, there are mods that add realism to the already beautiful ETS2 graphics, new trucks, parts and accessories, gas station, hotel and service center skins and so much more. Last but not least, there is also TruckersMP, the mod that allows you to play ETS2 in multiplayer mode. So if you fancy yourself driving around with other like-minded truckers from around the world this is the mod you should get. Bear in mind though that TruckersMP doesn’t allow any 3rd party mods so if you wish to start playing, you will need to create a new ETS2 profile.
So if you are looking for a game that helps you wind down after a hard day’s work then look no further than ETS2. Not only is it a relaxing game to play with, it’s aesthetically beautiful graphics are also pleasing to the eye. The available mods make this game even more fun to play and thus will also ensure that you will have an unforgettable experience playing ETS2. Thank you for reading and as usual please do leave a comment if you have any suggestions or feedback. And now if you would excuse me, it is time for me to boot up ETS2 because I have an important delivery to make across Europe and I am so looking forward to that long relaxing drive. Until next time, take care and happy trucking!