Schwarzmüller Trailer Pack DLC Review

About a week ago SCS communicated via their blog regarding an opportunity to win one of 30,000 activation keys being given away for a brand new DLC pack.  This new DLC pack is the Schwarzmuller Trailer Pack.  Unfortunately, all 30k keys were awarded within 24 hours, but the great news is, for much less than a cup of fancy coffee…this brand new DLC for ETS2 can be yours.  In US money the brand new Schwarzmuller Trailer Pack DLC will set you back $2.99 and is available from the Steam Store.  This trailer DLC expansion pack includes FIVE trailer types including a Food Cistern, Curtain Sider, Refrigerated Trailer, Slidepost Logging Trailer and a Low Bed Trailer.

Do we need more trailer choices in ETS2?  Well…perhaps not and I know through mods the sky is the limit.  But as I’ve said before, the cost of this DLC is affordable (for most) and most importantly, it helps support SCS Software to further develop our favorite trucking games of ETS2 and ATS.  Of course, I know this statement is often subject to ridicule.  You’ve already purchased the game so hasn’t that fact alone already funded SCS Software forever and a day?  Actually…NO!  This is not an SCS Software issue, it is just the nature of the software business and one that I’m very familiar with.  But this blog post isn’t about all that, so I’ll get back on subject.

Of course, the other major benefit of this DLC is having more choice of equipment in the multiplayer environment.  While these trailers are not currently available in the TruckersMP Multiplayer environment, they should be added in the next release.  THIS is great news for those of us who enjoy multiplayer action and of course unable to use mods.

The photos below are property of SCS Software and obtained from the Steam Store for the purpose of this review.

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Unfortunately I was not one of the 30,000 lucky winners.  By the time I read the blog article all had been awarded.  But I did purchase this DLC and managed to do a few jobs in recent days with these trailers.  Just in recent weeks, SCS Software has conducted two DLC giveaways via their blog site.  I’m not sure if more are coming, but it’s probably worth checking often.

Until next time…

Happy Trucking!

Jerry

CSIO’s SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter

The Eagle has landed…the good ole, and reliable United States Postal Service (USPS) “We Deliver” did their job just as the tracking number I received indicated and delivered my CSIO’s SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter on Saturday.  You may remember from a piece I wrote in April that I backed their Kickstarter program and as part of being an official backer would receive a shifter sometime in May.  I’ll admit, the wait has had elements of my childhood in the days leading up to Christmas and wondering what would be under the tree when I awoke on Christmas morning.  Ahhhhhhh  Ok…let me get back to reality now.

If you’ve had your head buried in the sand over the past several months AND not been paying attention to the recent ATS and ETS2 trucking news, then perhaps you’re completely out of the loop regarding what a CSIO SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter is, what it does, how you can get one and most importantly IF and WHY you should own one for yourself.  Well…I’m going to break these things down for you in what I hope will be an easy to understand read.  Here goes….

What is this thing?

The CSIO SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter started out as an idea (and a rather good one at that) by the CSIO Technologies team.  These guys wanted to bring to market a piece of hardware which would truly place us behind the wheel, or better yet behind the gear shift of a semi truck.  And remarkably they did just that!  But trust in the fact they just didn’t crank out a replica shifter from a 3D printer.  Oh heck no!  These guys have used the genuine article.  The shifter housing is 100% the real deal and what you would find if you crawled into the cab of a semi running an 18 speed Eaton Fuller transmission.  Sounds easy right?

Unfortunately for us simmers, the real deal found in a semi truck uses pneumatic hoses and not electric cables.  So the talented folks at CSIO Technologies designed a small USB interface which would be fully contained inside the shifter housing.  Their goal was to provide us something we’d all be proud to own and use and they certainly got this right!

The CSIO SKRS shifter mounts snugly and securely onto a Logitech G25/G27/G29 or Thrustmaster TH8RS/TH8A shifter.  One small USB cable (provided) then connects into an available USB port on your PC and after making a few changes in either ATS or ETS2, you’ll soon find yourself manually shifting gears in the big rig of your choice as you truck down the open highway.

My First Impressions

My style of simulation game play has always been to enhance it as much as possible.  I have hundreds of dollars invested in hardware to enhance my flight simulation experience.  When flying the PMDG 737 or 777, I almost rarely need to use the keyboard and mouse.  I have hardware modules to control my NAV and COM radios, I have hardware modules to control the autopilot and flight navigation systems and of course I use a flight yoke and rudder pedals.  Likewise, I have the Logitech G27 wheel, pedals and shifter to enhance my “Realism through Simulation” efforts with American Truck Simulator, Euro Truck Simulator 2 and Farming Simulator 15.  Driving or flying using only mouse and keyboard is just simply not an option for  me.  Each of the games I play are SIMULATORS.  So having said that, it’s no wonder I would find the CSIO SKRS shifter a must have for my setup.

While it’s been a long time since I held a Class A CDL (issued in the Great State of Texas), the CSIO SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter felt comfortable in my hand.  Of course it should.  As previously stated…this is the real deal!  But I must almost admit that I pretty much drove my ATS and ETS2 trucks with automatic transmissions.  The reason for this was because I just found the process of shifting gears (especially simulating an 18 speed transmission) to be un-natural.  I tried setting up buttons on my G27 shifter to emulate the high/low and splitter functionality.  But it just didn’t feel right.  So I gave up and returned my truck to an automatic transmission.

The Setup

In the coming weeks (perhaps month or so) the initial setup will be much easier and actually almost plug and play.  SCS has officially backed the shifter and have plans to add the necessary adaptions to make the setup easier.  Until this happens, you will need to make a few edits to the profile controls.sii files.  But everything is explained in the very well produced CSIO YouTube videos found here.  The changes required on my system mirrored 100% of what was discussed in the video and everything functioned as described.

My Use

As you can see from the image below, I’ve installed the shifter onto my Logitech G27 shifter as described.  I spent about two hours over the weekend driving in ATS multiplayer both learning the correct shifting methods and having a lot of fun.  As those of us who already use a wheel, pedals and shifter setup know just how much these items immerse us into the simulation….this shifter knob takes it even higher.  Yes absolutely, you can enjoy ATS or even ETS2 just using a mouse and keyboard.  You can improve on that slightly by using a game controller such as an XBox type controller.  But throw this CSIO SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter onto a Logitech shifter (with wheel and pedals) and just about the only thing missing is that sweet smell of diesel exhaust.  In other words, this setup takes ATS from being a video game into a hard core American Truck SIMULATOR.

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Unfortunately, I realized I would need to change my setup just slightly in time.  I’ve got to get rid of the rolling chair I currently use or place a carpet under it.  Trying to stay coordinated while using clutch, brake, accelerator (plus shifting gears) all while trying to keep my chair from rolling backwards is a real pain.  Not to mention it seriously breaks my sense of realism.  The other thing is I plan to mount the Logitech shifter on a lower table or platform of some kind so my shifter is a little lower than it currently is.  Mounting this at the same height as the steering wheel makes the overall height of the knob much higher than the default shifter knob and I’d rather it be just a little lower.

Am I satisfied?

Heck yea….

Do you need the CSIO SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter?

Heck yea…Especially if you already have either the Logitech or Thrustmaster hardware.  This will allow you to take the simulation to the next level.  This is truly an awesome hardware addition and I’m happy to have had the opportunity to back such an amazing product.  I can’t wait to learn what other items the CSIO team will come up with next.  As a matter of fact, the CSIO.tech team posted a new YouTube video showing an EasyJake addon for the SKRS.   Yes Please!!!!!

Want to learn more about the CSIO SKRS Eaton Fuller Style USB Shifter?  Just visit the CSIO.Tech website.

 

As always thank you for reading my blog.  You can follow me on Twitter and also check out my mature virtual trucking company, Grizzly Bear Trucking.  We pride ourselves in realistic simulation operations on multiplayer and single player.  We are a relaxed group of enthusiasts who enjoy following the rules of the open road and would welcome others who share this same desire.

Until next time…

Happy Trucking!

JT

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What does 940551169900056091xxxx mean?  No, it’s not an international telephone number.  No, it’s not the winning lottery numbers (close) and no, it’s not my IQ.  That number is the United States Parcel Service Priority Mail tracking number for my Eaton Fuller style USB shift knob which I backed in the CSIO Kickstarter campaign last month.  The reason why this number is close to being a winning lottery number is the fact that the package is due to arrive at my residence tomorrow (Saturday, 21 May).  Woohoo….

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I received the shipping notice and the CSIO folks posted the above picture on Twitter with the tweet reading “Last of the @Kickstarter s going out right now!”  Yep, one of those USPS Priority Mail packages will find its way to my home in Denver on Saturday (hopefully).

I’ve see a few of the famous (and some not so famous) YouTube folks demo and showcase their shifter knob in recent days.  From what I’ve seen, the shifter will most certainly live up to my expectation.  You can expect a full review of the shifter sometime next week right here on GrizzlyBearSims Planes, Trains and Automobiles (and Farming Too!) Realism through Simulation blog

Until next time…

If you can’t find it, grind it! 

Jerry

I Must Be Nuts…

Wheel nuts that is. 

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Yea…I’ve been critical of SCS Software before and I’ve recently written several blog articles about the new update for ATS and ETS2.  But, while I really don’t need to “tune my nuts”…I did put my money where my mouth is an purchased their brand new DLC titled “Wheel Tuning Pack”.  It’s available at the Steam Store for $2.99 USD.  If you own both ATS and ETS2, then you only need to purchase it once and you’ll get the DLC for both titles.   Look…I’ll be the first to say that I feel there are a lot of other things SCS Software should be working on before working on a wheel tuning pack so I can paint my nuts.  But….But….like many of you, I truly love ATS and I want to see this franchise be successful and I’m willing to support that success any way I can, and the best way I can do that is to purchase the DLC.  So I did.

Until next time…

What color will you paint your nuts? 

J

ATS/ETS2 Recent Updates

If you are a Steam user of either (or both) American Truck Simulator or Euro Truck Simulator 2, you probably are aware a software update was automatically pushed out in recent days.  The official update versions are as follows:  ATS 1.2 and ETS2 1.23. 

I don’t know about you, but I had a bear (a Grizzly Bear) of a time with ATS after the update.  For about 12 hours I believed I had lost much of my overall progress with my career save profile (the one I started the game with).  I assumed most of the mods I had installed prior to the update would cause ATS to blow up, so I deactivated them from the ATS Mod Manager.  Upon doing this, it caused ATS to crash when loading into my saved profile.  After several swear words, and a not so restful nights sleep…I approached it again this morning and managed to get it working.  Look for a soon-to-be-released blog post on how I resolved this issue. 

Anyway, speaking about the ATS update (because I haven’t even dared to launch ETS2), it really is more than just custom lug nuts.  I know even I’ve been critical of SCS Software for bringing us custom lug nuts before delivering Arizona and before fixing some of the most talked about issues.  But Hey-Ho, you gotta start somewhere….and as I said, the update for ATS is more than just custom lug nuts.

Steam Workshop

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This is perhaps what I’m most excited about with this update.  I can’t tell you how frustrating it can be when dealing with all these mod download sites and their ads and high risk of malware.  From what I understand, the Steam Workshop will be a much safer alternative (and much easier to use) form of finding awesom mods to enhance ATS and ETS2.  Here’s the offical explanation of the Steam Workshop.  “Steam Workshop is a hub which allows simply distribution of game modifications created by community.  Thanks to Steam Workshop, you can download and install mods effortlessly from a safe and trusted place.”  You complete have me at SAFE and TRUSTED!I’ve already downloaded/installed a few really awesom mods from the Steam Workshop and suggest you take a look for yourself. 

 

Ultimate Wheel Customization

Yea, yea….I know.  I’m sure someone, somewhere is/was really exited to know that SCS Software was working so hard on custom lug nuts.  This is not high on my list of priorities.  After all, I can’t really see my lugnuts as I’m motoring down the interstate.  But perhaps this is clearing the way for better things.  So it is what it is!

UI Changes

There are a number of nice changes made to the user interface in this update.  They include:

Navigation path (red line) can be disabled (option)

Disable of hidden Route Advisor popups (option)

Autopark feature can be disabled (option)

Speeding highlight on Route Advisor

The last two are perhaps my picks from this list.  I don’t need autopark and while most times the speed will be highlighted in red (I almost always drive slightly over the speed limit as I do in real life), it is still good to know.

Vehicles

The following enhancements relating to vehicles are part of this update:

Fixed cruise control locked on by retarder

Multiple position of engine brake

Improved truck stability during retarder usage

Keyboard steering improved

Map

Speed limits polished

Speed limits signed enlarged

Stop signs removed from traffic light controlled crossroads

Turn left traffic added to some crossroads

Certified scaled are now working

Traffic light on interstates removed (where possible)

OK…so while there were some nice changes to the map dept.  There still so much work that needs to be done to fix really bad issues which truly break with reality.  The intersection in Tonopah still needs to be fixed and while they removed the traffic light/stop signs on I-80 in Reno, they still have the speed limit set at 30 mph.  I really doubt I-80 slows to 30 mph.

Other

AI improvments

Steam Achievements for Nevada

I’m not sure exactly what sort of AI improvements were made.  But hopefully SCS Software sent all the AI to drivers training and as a result we can anticipate the level of respect truckers deserve on the highway.  But the jury is still out on this one…As for Nevada achivements, looks like I earned both of those (Silver State – Discovery of every city in Nevada and Gold Fever – Deliver cargo to both quarries in Nevada).  Not sure why these achivements were part of the game from day one.  Hopefully any Steam achivements for Arizona will be available when that DLC is released.  Perhaps that is the cause of the delay?  ha ha ha

In closing, yea…I know I’ve mentioned lugnuts several times in this blog posting.  As you can see for yourself, this software update was much more and I’m truly excited for Arizona.  I think we must be close now….  Are we there yet?  Are we???

 

Until next time…

You’ll find me waiting for AZ DLC!

J

CSIO’s SKRS 18 Speed Eaton Fuller Style USB Shift Knob

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Would you like to drive your American Truck Simulator or Euro Truck Simulator 2 trucks with a real Eaton Fuller shifter?  Soon you’ll be able to do just that thanks to the wonderful and very talented individuals at CSIO Technologies.  These guys have figured out how to take a real 18 Speed Eaton Fuller shifter knob, incorportate a little technology and lots of ingenunity and provide to all the truck driving fans of ETS2 and ATS this wonderful product. 

 

But wait!!!  It’s not available just yet.  However if you act fast, and sign up for their KickStarter project, you may have your fancy shifter knob in May (pre-orders will begin shipping in June). 

I’ve joined over 140 other ATS/ETS2 fans by pledging my support of this project.  You can do the same, but time is running out.  Head over to the CSIO’s SKRS 18 Speed Eaton Fuller Style USB Shift Knob KickStarter page and sign your pledge of support and join me and over 140 other ATS/ETS2 fans. 

Upon receipt of my shifter knob, I’ll do a full review of the product here on GrizzlyBearSims Blog page.  So stay tuned…

Until then….

Happy Trucking!!!

Jerry

P.S.  What are you waiting for?  Go pledge your support for this awesome piece of kit. 

RusMap–My First Impressions

I realize the RusMap map mod for Euro Truck Simulator 2 is far from new.  As you probably know, this map mod includes 30 cities in Russia and 12 cities in Belarus.  The most current version of RusMap is version 1.6.1 which was released on or about 21 February 2016.  As the blog title suggests, this is my first experience with this map mod.

My overall experience with ETS2 really only dates back to early 2015.  I picked up both expansion DLC packs including Going North and Going East, then sometime after I tried the Promods map mod which opened up a huge chunk of Europe to me and really felt that was enough.  With Promods I’ve explored as far North as Iceland and down towards Romania, then east into Poland.  But I’ve also kept my eye on the RusMap project and after updating Promods to the latest version I decided it was a good time to look at RusMap.

With regards to map mods available for ETS2, there are several.  The ones I keep hearing the most about are Promods, RusMap and TruckSim Map.  From very early research, I kept hearing that Promods was the best, had the best support base and was the most actively developed.  So that was what I chose as my first map mod.  From further research I’ve learned that Promods and TruckSim Map will not work together. But RusMap will work with either Promods or TruckSim Map.  So just remember, RusMap will work with either…but PM and TSM don’t work together.

Moving along and getting us back on track…

The RusMap mod for ETS2 connects the Belarus and Russian cities with the Going East DLC at the town of Brest.  There are 30 cities in Russia and 12 cities in Belarus to explore.

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The following images were captured during a recent drive through Belarus and Russia.  I’ve found no technical issues or glitches.  I’ve personally never visited this part of the world, but I’m certainly pleased with the quality and level of detail I’m seeing with the RusMap mod.

Besides trees, fields, houses and other buildings…the RusMap mod appears to have more “people” activity than I’ve noticed with the base ETS2 game or with Promods.  I like this.  It gives more eye candy to look at while we drive.

Active construction zones with working equipment and working crews.

The developers even included beautiful Russian architecture to marvel at while we drive by.

 

All in all I’m really pleased with the RusMap mod and I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to expand their ETS2 experience.  As I’ve pointed out, RusMap also works well alongside the Promods ETS2 map system.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Until next time…

Happy Trucking!!!

Jerry

Trucker’s Logbook #4

Our Trucker’s Logbook #4 once again has us in Europe.  I’ve been spending a little more time playing ETS2 versus ATS.  As I’ve stated before, I do love ATS.  But I’ve spent almost 60 hours playing since it was released a few weeks ago and I’ve discovered all cities and I’ve explored almost 100% of the map (CA and AZ).  I’m hearing Mantrid is going to include I-10 to his Coast-to-Coast Map and more than likely that will force me to drive that route so I can drive through my birth state of Texas.  But my feelings on the Coast-to-Coast map are mixed.  I’ll  just say that I prefer quality over quantity and leave it at that for now.

Speaking of quality.  I recently updated my Promods ETS2 map to the latest and greatest version of 2.0.1.  Also, I’ve installed the RusMap which adds 30 new cities in Russia and 12 new cities in Belarus.  It’s been a while since I’ve headed east across Europe and Promods have done a lot of work on their Poland map (Poland Rebuilding) and it was merged into their Promods map system several releases ago.  But this is the first time I’ve ventured out in that direction since they added it.   I actually have reviews for both Promods and RusMap in the pipeline, so certainly keep an eye out for those blog pieces coming soon.

As previously mentioned, our logbook entry for today has us in ETS2.  We are going to head to Russia and do some exploring around the (new to me) RusMap map mod.  The job we are taking is hauling three forklifts from the Bayer company in Brussel’s Belgium to StoraEnso in Tver, Russia.  The total weight of the three forklifts and trailer is 11 tons.  The total trip distance is 2,454 km (1,525 mi) with an estimated travel time of 39 hours, 38 minutes.   The job is paying €103,036 or €41.67 /km.

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Our route will take us out of Belgium across Germany, then through Poland, across Belarus and finally into Russia.

Our day starts out on Friday just before Noon at our garage in Brussels.  We have a large thermos of coffee and plenty of snacks for the trip.  Our pickup location of Bayer is just around the corner from our garage.

We arrive at Bayer and the trailer and three forklifts is ready to go.  We back up, hook up and do a quick inspection of everything.  It’s time to roll….

As we depart Brussels, we enter into Antwerp.  The snapshot below is looking at the Cathedral in Antwerp and is one of my favorite places to visit.  I’ll visit here in real life this coming July and I can’t wait.

The snapshot below is more for commentary than it is to really document our trip.  But somewhere in Germany I saw this ICE train rolling by.  What interested me about it that it is a long train.  I’m pretty sure this train is part of the default ETS2 and not part of ProMods.  If my thinking is correct, and this is part of the default ETS2…they why did SCS Software give us such short trains in American Truck Simulator?

It’s been a really long day and we’ve covered a lot of miles during day 1, leg 1.  It’s approaching 20:30 and we are yawning.  We pull into this Shell station to fill up before resting.  But what’s interesting about the screenshot is the TWO fueling points.  I’ve never seen that before and I think it is WONDERFUL.  With some of the larger truck stops we see in ATS, we need more than just one fuel point.

Goodnight….

Good morning!  Day two begins just after 7:30 on Saturday morning.  Yep…it’s raining!

It’s still raining…and while I might be hungry…I think I’ll just pass the Mickey D’s on by.

All the toll booths.  We must be in Poland.

This guy was trying to tell me something.  But we are just gonna keep on rolling….

Day two comes to a close and once again we are yawning our self crazy.  We pull over and stop just before we reach the border of Poland and Belarus.  Day three (Sunday) also starts off much like day two with rain.  Let’s head to Belarus.

“Here Comes The Sun”  Now where are those sunglasses?

Hello Belarus…

110 km/h YES PLEASE!!!

Rolling through Russia, we see a lot of cars/trucks pulled over on the soft shoulder.  Many of the people appear to be ready to throw down with each other.  Peace folks…

I was hoping we would be able to make our delivery on Sunday (mid-afternoon) without the need to rest prior.  But we were held up in traffic and we would likely be falling asleep trying to drive the last 25-30 km.  So we are going to have a rest here.  We have plenty of time and should make our delivery sometime late Sunday night or early Monday morning.

As we wake from our rest, it is Sunday evening just before 8 PM.  We have just another few hours until we make our delivery.  The developers of RusMap have made sure to include some beautiful Russian architecture.

We have reached our delivery destination and they are happy to see us.

Despite a speeding ticket we received in Belarus, our job completed with excellent results.

While this job was not our longest completed.  That would be our ATS Coast-to-Coast run we did a few weeks ago.  This job did take much longer and is perhaps our longest (measured in time) job to date.  The time required was just shy of 3 hours.  But well worth it.  I’m going to do mostly short-haul jobs in Russia for a few days and try to explore more of the RusMap before I pickup another long-haul out of this region.  It was a of fun and I’ll be sure to get back to Russia and Belarus compliments to RusMap for providing this wonderful add-on map mod.

Until next time…

Счастливый Грузоперевозки  “Happy Trucking in Russian”  Or at least that is what Google Translate thinks it is.

J

Trucker’s Logbook #3

Our Trucker’s Logbook #3 has me returning to Euro Truck Simulator 2 (ETS2) for some long-haul trucking.  Even before the release of American Truck Simulator (ATS), it had been a few months since I spent any amount of time in ETS2.  I did attempt to launch it over the Christmas holiday but it wouldn’t start and gave me an error about a mod issue with a previous game save.  Come to find out this was because I hadn’t updated ProMods after an update to ETS2 was made available.  After realizing the error of my ways, I have ETS2 working once again.   As you can see from the map below, I haven’t spent as much time trying to discover more of the map.  Actually, much of the map is new territory with the ProMods expansion into Romania etc. 

While ATS is obviously my favorite, I do enjoy ETS2.  My wife is from Belgium and we visit about every 18 months or so.  We spend time in Belgium and England when we visit and I have really enjoyed exploring the ETS2 map. 

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Our job today is driving 22 tons of Canned Beef for Euro Goodies in Lille, France to Transinet in Pyce (Ruse), Bulgaria.  Just to familiarize you with the truck I drive in ETS2.  I own the Volvo FH with the Globetrotter XL Cabin and the 6×3 chassis.  The rig has the massive 750 HP engine installed.  She performs really well.  The job is expected to pay €73,510 or €34.65/km.  The trip distance is 2,104 km (1,307 mi) and should take approx.. 34 hours.

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Our route will take us from France through Belgium, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Romania and then into Bulgaria. 

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We’re picking up the trailer just after 11 AM on Wednesday.  We are due to delivery in Pyce no later than 01:04 on Saturday morning.  We are fully rested and ready to go. 

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Day 1, it’s a beautiful day as we drive through France towards Belgium. 

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Taking an opportunity to stretch our legs, freshen up our coffee while we fill up.

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I love how SCS Software gives us so much to look at as we drive.  In the background an airplane is on final into Brussels EBBR. 

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Day 1 comes to an end as we pull over for a rest just outside of Nurnberg, Germany. 

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Day 2 starts early with a wet start.  Rain is the general theme for much of the day.  We do leave the rain behind in the afternoon and spend our second night on the road just outside of Budapest.  However, we did have a minor fender-bender when a car hit our trailer.  I blame it on the rain. 

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Day 3 starts well before the sun rises but we arrive at our destination on Friday afternoon. 

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Unfortunately the accident penalized use some XP and cash.  But we will live to drive another day. 

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I then headed back to Bucharest, Romania to meet with a realtor and purchased a new garage. 

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I believe with our new Bucharest garage, this makes about 6 or 7 that we have in ETS2.  All our ETS2 garages are just the small version and filled with three trucks and three drivers. 

As we have just about covered all there is to cover in California and Nevada in the awesome American Truck Simulator, I’m probably going to spend more time trucking around in Europe and try to discover more cities.  I’m also looking into adding RusMap which should provide 30 cities in Russia and 12 cities in Belarus.  I’ll make sure to tell you all about it here.

Until next time…

Happy Trucking!!!

J

World of Trucks–Part Two

On Friday, I wrote about the World of Trucks (WoT) website and shared some basic background information about the site and provided some details on how you sign up and link EuroTruck Simulator 2 (ETS2) and/or American Truck Simulator (ATS) to your WoT account.  This all needs to take place before you can proceed into the Job Market function of World of Trucks.

At the present time, the Job Market function is only available for ETS2.  However, I read in the SCS Forums that there are plans to introduce the Job Market function for ATS at a later stage in 2016.  So for now, the WoT Job Market is exclusive to ETS2.

When you first click on the Job Market link on the World of Trucks website, you’ll see a drop down menu listing a few dozen European cities.  I don’t have a screen shot available to show you, but you’ll only see the drop down menu one time.  Select the city you wish to operate your first job from.  The city you choose can be the same city where your truck currently resides in ETS2 or it can be any other city.  If your truck is not presently in the city you select, your truck will automagically be transported to that location at a later stage.

Once you select the city, you’ll see a listing of job offers available from that city.  You can sort this list by several variables including distance, destination, time etc.  I usually use either distance or destination.  In the example below I’m using distance.

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When you find a job that interests you, you click that job (example below is a job transporting chimney systems from Lille, France to Klagenfurt, Austria).  A few things to note.  The “Time Left” indicates the amount of real world time you will have to complete this job.  Meaning, at the time I was browsing for job offers it was approx. 5 AM MST (in real life).  The WoT Job Market is based on real world time and not ETS2 in-game time.  As you know there is a big difference.  Another point of interest is the “Est. Delivery Time”.  Again, back to the image below…the Est. Delivery Time showing ~1 H 19 MIN is the approx. amount of time (real world time) it should take me to complete the job.  Once you are ready to accept this job, click the “Sign Contract” button.

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The next screen displayed will be the “Contract Signed” screen and will just provide you the basic information about the load.  Click OK and return to the ETS2 Game application.

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Back inside the game, click on “Job Market”.  You’ll notice you now have a third option in the “Job Type Selection” screen titled “External Contracts”.  Click the External Contracts button.

You’ll now be presented with the screen below showing your delivery job.  Once again, take note of the remaining time.  In the example below we have 21 hours and 11 minutes to complete this job.  This is real world time and not in-game time.  Click on “Begin Delivery”.  Once you’ve done this, regardless of the location where your truck was last, it will be automagically teleported to the starting point and already connected to the trailer.

All you now need to do is drive….just remember, these external contract jobs work off of real world time.  In the screenshot below, we’ve arrived in Klagenfurt and dropped off our trailer.

The deliver was successful (as shown below) and we’re close to earning our level 27 promotion.  Want to do another job?  Sure……

So we return to the World of Trucks website and click on Job Market.  WoT now knows our truck is located in Klagenfurt and provides a listing of all jobs from this location.

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Find a job which interests you, and sign the contract.  This next job we are taking is a load of Copper Roof Gutters to Kassel Germany.  We have 14 hours (real world hours) to complete this job and the estimated time required is one hour.  Click Sign Contract.

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Now return back to the ETS2 game and click on Job Market and once again select External Contracts.  Then click “Begin Delivery”.  Assuming your truck was still at the previous drop off location, it will once again be teleported to the next pickup location.  So, if you need to discover the current city you are in, or if you need to repair your truck etc. and want to do this driving around with a trailer attached…then you’ll want to do that before you click “Begin Delivery”.

Not that you require proof, but I thought I would show you a before and after screen shot to illustrate how the time works with WoT Job Market.  In the screenshot below, we have pulled into a rest area.  We’ve parked and shut off our engine.  Our in-game time is Thursday 11:03 and we have 13 hours and 41 minutes to complete this job.

We have now completed our rest.  The time is now Thursday, 20:03.  We’ve rested for our required 9 hours and we still have 13 hours and 40 minutes to complete this job.

We made it to our destination and completed another “Excellent” delivery and earned our level 27 promotion.  This marks the 6th WoT Contact job we’ve successfully completed.

So, what happens if we decide to perform jobs from the ETS2 Freight Market?  So in our example above, we completed our delivery to Kassel, Germany.  Let’s say we opt to just use the ETS2 Freight Market and we select a job to Antwerp, Belgium.  We complete that delivery and we go look at the WoT website.  It will still show our location as Kassel, Germany.  If you want to perform another job from WoT, you can either pickup an ETS2 delivery back to Kassel or just allow WoT to teleport you.

A few questions you might be asking yourself….

Why use the WoT Job Market?  I think as it stands today, this is a valid question.  As you can tell I also don’t exclusively use the WoT Job Market.  While the extra step in logging into the WoT website to select a job is minimal effort and I’m personally not that bothered with it making me start in the last city I visited.  I really would rather drive from previous drop point to new pickup point versus being teleported to that location.  But I think the WoT Job Market has some wonderful potential down the road and I suppose having access to it now and using it as frequently (or infrequently) is really up to you.

Are the WoT Job Market offers similar to ETS2 Freight Market?  I haven’t done a side-by-side comparison on each and every delivery.  But I have spot checked a few and found the price per mile to be similar.  If you are just starting out and every Euro counts, then you may have some concerns.  But as I presently have over a million Euro in the bank…I’m more about the overall experience than I am on making sure I can pay my bills.

What do I see for the future of the WoT Job Market?  Of course, I am in no way affiliated with SCS Software and I am not in communication with them.  Any knowledge I have is completely public knowledge that I’ve obtained from public sources.  But I think the potential for the WoT Job Market is HUGE!

Basically, if you are familiar with the concept of a virtual airline in the flight simulation hobby, then the WoT website and specifically the WoT Job Market can be just this.  Yes there are VTC’s or Virtual Truck Companies.  But without direct integration into the ETS2 or ATS games, (in my opinion) there is just too much manual work required.  I don’t want to have to visit a website and fill out a manual job completion form to track my deliveries.  This would be like the virtual airlines of 15+ years ago with their manual PIREP process.

Because WoT is owned and managed by SCS software, they have the integration into both the ETS2 and ATS game platforms.  So further enhancement will only make this a better experience.  As I mentioned in part 1, some of these future enhancements may allow for setting up VTC’s within the WoT environment.  So that would be cool….

But here’s an idea I came up with in the shower this morning.  Yes, I do some of my best brainstorming and thinking in the shower.  But let’s say you start out in Europe with ETS2.  You pick a job from Bucharest, Romania to Los Angeles, California.  The job is a shipping container.  You select that job through the WoT Job Market and you drive that container from Bucharest to Southampton.  It’s delivered at the port of Southampton.  Through the magic of web databases, the shipping container is virtually moved via container ship from Southampton to New York (or Miami or wherever).  Then you start up ATS, pickup the container and drive it to its destination.  This concept could be done via single player or even handled by multiple individuals as part of a VTC.  Sound fun?  I think so too…

In closing, while I’ll admit that the WoT Job Market may not be appealing in the current stage, I do encourage you to use it (even just occasionally).  We need to use it so we can show there is an interest.  To quote that famous line from Field of Dreams, “If you build it, He (WE) will come”.

Well that is just about all the time I have for today’s update.  I think I’ll head down to my basement office and do a little trucking now.  But make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed to get all the latest blog postings sent direct to your favorite RSS Reader.  Or just bookmark the website and return often.  You can also follow me on Twitter.  I have also started streaming some of my gaming activities on Twitch.  Drop by if you see I’m streaming.

Until next time…

Happy Trucking!!!

J