Updated: May 14, 2021
American Truck Simulator and Euro Truck Simulator 2 are two of my all-time favorite games!
Have you ever wanted to drive a big rig across the country to deliver goods from state to state? American Truck Simulator gives me that opportunity. In the same respect, Euro Truck Simulator 2 allows me to experience the expanse and beauty of Europe, driving their own brands of 18 wheelers. Norway is lovely, by the way. ;)
When I was young, probably around the early to mid 70's, a friend of mine down the street owned a CB radio. We used to get together all the time and listen to the truckers chatter back and forth to one another. Sometimes, we would get up the nerve to call a break of our own and see if there was anyone out there willing to gab with us for a bit. I loved the thought of partaking on adventures across the country, seeing new places and experiencing new things. The thought of being a trucker excited me.
As with a lot of things, I never attempted to make that a reality. That would be a subject for another post or ten. Fast forward to now and, thanks to ATS and ETS2, I'm living vicariously through the games and getting to drive various brands of trucks, run my own trucking company, and taking loads of all sorts from one place to another. It's not real life, but it works for me and I'm thrilled with it.
Both American Truck Simulator and Euro Truck Simulator 2 are produced by SCS Software. ATS was released in February of 2016 and ETS in October of 2012. As I stated, they both allow the player to drive various brands of trucks, run their own company, and take all sort of loads from city to city, state to state, and with ETS2, country to country. The graphics are amazingly realistic, areas are incredibly detailed, and it gives me a relaxing time of driving that big rig, day and night.
Being from the WA/OR areas, one of my favorite places to drive is up and down the lovely, peaceful Oregon Coast. The sights and sounds take me there when I can't actually be there. So very nice!
I'm all for the immersive experience, so rather than gamepad or keyboard and mouse, I have opted for a steering wheel with pedals and a tracker on my hat that replaces looking around with the mouse. There are other players going all-out with elaborate set-ups that make me all jelly, but I just don't have the room or money for something like that right now. Some day. Some day.
For the steering wheel, I use the Thrustmaster T150 Racing Wheel with pedals. It adds so much to the game! Since it has Force Feedback built in, you can actually tell the subtle difference between rolling over asphalt and gravel, not to mention quite a jarring if you happen to hit something! Haha. My TrackIR Premium Head Tracking For Gaming gear consists of a small camera which sits on top of my monitor and reads my head movement, so I can look in all directions without the need of a mouse. Both of these make the driving of my trucks extra cool!
One of the many cool features of both games is the in-truck radios that I can tune into different radio stations, both over the air and on the Internet, around the country and around the world, depending on which game I'm playing. My favorite station is a Soul station right here in the US. It adds some extra relaxation and reality to it all.
Both games work in conjunction with the Steam Workshop, so there are thousands of designers designing mods for the games, giving us a ton of content beyond what SCS is already putting out.
To this day, SCS Software continues to add more quality content to both games: More trucks, more states and countries to explore, more enhancements and fixes. American Truck Simulator and Euro Truck Simulator 2 are simply a couple of the best games on the market today. Personally, I cannot get enough of them!
Take a look for yourself. You can often find discounts on both games on Humble Bundle or Fanatical. Other than that, Steam has sales and deals going on throughout the year. If you can't find good prices on the games at the first two places, try there. Add them to your Wishlist and you'll be notified when they go on sale.
I've put out numerous gameplay videos on my Old Nerd Reviews Too channel, so you can see for yourself how cool both games are. Here's the link to my American Truck Simulator playlist.
If you've ever considered being a trucker, without doing it all in real life, you can't get any better than this.
Enjoy and KEEP ON TRUCKING!!!
P.S. If you'd like to see the really nice computer that I upgraded to and I'm driving on, you'll find that blog post HERE.