First impressions/experiences/opinions about ATS

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02 Feb 2016 20:27

Now, since ATS has been finally released, I'm quite interested in your first impressions/experiences/opinions about the game.
So, feel free to write down, what you think about your first deliveries, miles and hours in ATS.
Let me make the beginning:
After 1 hour of playing and 4 deliveries, I have to say, that I really like ATS, but there are of course some letdowns, I have to admit.

When I started the game, I already felt home. It is just like ETS2 (as we could expect it) with the slight difference, that the screens got an American looking style.
So, I set my starting garage at Fresno, got my first delivery in that town and on the first kilometers, I really was impressed about the atmosphere and the looks. Sure, it is the same engine as ETS2, but nevertheless, it just looks so American. Also driving the trucks feels really American. Big trucks, big trailers, larger turning circles, more needed space and more indirect steering. It just feels American and how i thought, America would be. Trips already took me to Los Angeles, Sacramento and Oxnard and I still like the atmosphere, the feeling, and most of all: The new delivery points. It's just great to park your trailer! All delivery points are much more of a challenge than the ones in ETS2. Maybe, it's just because of the bigger trucks and the larger trailers, but it's sometimes really challenging. That's why I really understand and appreciate that SCS included the easy parking option with less XP for less skilled drivers.
What I also observed, was, that it is much more difficult to make money. You get less money for the deliveries, fines for speeding, crashing or red lights are much higher than in ETS2 and you get much easier damage and more damage. For example, I slightly crashed into a car, while turning right (of course intentionally :mrgreen: :roll: ) and I already got 13 % damage on my truck and 2% on my trailer. In ETS, it usually were only maybe 3 or 4 percent! Furthermore, you seem to level up slower as you do in ETS2. So, that's really nice, since it makes the game more realistic.

On the other side, I encountered some things, I don't like that much. There are some minor issues, which are already a bit annoying. For example, there is a weird AI behaving at the overpasses at freeway intersections. In case, that 2 trucks exist the opposite exits at the same time, you will have a deadlock on the bridge, since those trucks already stop at the beginning of the bridge and do not drive further to the middle. If they did so, both trucks would be able to just drive on and wouldn't stop the whole traffic. Furthermore, you see flying cars in various places, which should have been seen while beta testing, shouldn't it?
There are also the same old errors, SCS is doing, when it's about map making. Always the same intersections, way to short lanes on and off the freeways, only sparsely set signs (sure, they can't reach Purno, but few more signs would be great) to mention three of them.
But what annoys me most, is really the smaller scale compared to ETS2, as I already mentioned in the ATS - Expectations thread. The - let's say - fear, that you always have the feeling to be inside a city, was really confirmed. There are freeway exits every few meters, you often already see the next one, just when you pass the one before. This is annoying! Time also passes by much faster (of course, since scale is 1:32.5 compared to 1:19 in ETS2) and you make miles therefore faster as well. In ETS2, already your 2nd delivery usually was a longer trip on the highway or on country roads and you always got the feeling, you actually would be driving from one city to another. In ATS, you are driving on freeways, too, but you do not really get a feeling of driving at the countryside outside cities. I am really looking forward to drive in the desert of Nevada to see how it is there. I really fear, this scale will kill the immersion in the American endlessness, the feeling of driving on freeways for hundreds of miles without really passing anything. You know, I mean the feeling you get, when driving through Iceland in ProMods :mrgreen: ! But maybe, this is just the reality in California and may improve in less populated states.

Therefore, I am pretty sure, that ETS2 will always have much more game hours, just because of the fact, that you get much more a feeling for the distance you are passing. But, nevertheless, I will play ATS for a lot of hours. It definitely is a step forward for SCS. I am also really looking forward to the many mods, that will be created and maybe, one of them will improve the scale, that's at least my hope and wish :D .

And now, it is up to you to write about your first impressions/experiences/opinions after (and only if) you have played ATS yourself.

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02 Feb 2016 21:44

I drove for 1 hour listening to this music. BEST experience ever!


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02 Feb 2016 22:15

So the map scale is also 1:32.5? I'm disappointed. I really hoped the SCS would go in reverse direction, at least a little. I hoped for 1:15.

I'm just really fond of the newest parts in ProMods and sometimes listening to a radiostation at 70 kph I feel like it would be great to drive there a bit longer.

And now the SCS offers me not a relaxing game but something where I must turn the steering wheel like hell. A bit of a concern for me.

Obviously, I am not the hub of the universe. I always can just pass by. Thank you for the information.
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02 Feb 2016 22:51

I have only made a a couple of short tips from LA - Vegas and Vegas to Bakersfield, but so far but the landscape looks great and cities look good. I do have to say the tumbleweed rolling across the highway is awesome and the buger joints off the interstates are even better, nothing says american more than fast food or coffee and donut shops, lol. The speed traps and cops in the traffic are great features and they do suck alot of money out of you when you do get caught, just like real life.

The only real problem I have is the scale and the wont change so we have to live with it. You dont get the feeling that you are ever traveling in any unpopulated areas or are entering large cities. I feel like I'm driving through a silighly less populated east coast with a west coast landscape, where a city ends but another town or city start shortly after. I do live pretty much in the middle of nowhere myself, so I do know somewhat of what it feels like to drive through wide open spaces where nothing really ever changes, :lol:. I never got the true feeling of being in a mega city when I departed with my first load from LA or entering a large city in the middle desert when I got to Vegas. The map view gives a better impression of nothingness then the driving does because of the roads and buildings for all the smaller towns. SCS is going to have a extermly difficult time making the east coast cities feel seperated a bit without making it too sparsely populated cause it is almost one big huge city in places, like New York, Philidelphia, Baltimore and Washington DC. In a matter of minutes you could make a trip anywhere in the map, which makes it feel even smaller then it already is.

With that said I will continue to play it cause it is fun and is somewhere completely different to drive then anywhere I have driven in ETS2. The graphics have improved big time since the first time i played ETS2 and thelp make it way more realistic. The roads feel like they have lots of space and have no sudden sharp turns while traveling 110, still hate those sharp 90 degree turns the ETS2 base map has.

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03 Feb 2016 01:07

Lugge-Trucker wrote:Furthermore, you see flying cars in various places, which should have been seen while beta testing, shouldn't it?
This is not a bug. In California our cars can all fly...

just kidding
Mapping... somewhere

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03 Feb 2016 02:00

Nice Back to the Future reference Penguinaz :)

Now in terms of my first impressions...

I've only done two jobs in ATS so far (started in San Diego, delivered cargo to Carlsbad and to Fresno). In my opinion, I'm honestly a little disappointed.

Here are my quips with the game.

The map. Where do I even start with this map. It's honestly extremely disappointing in so many ways. I'm not sure what SCS was trying to pull here, but after how well done the map for Scandinavia DLC was, I would have much rather paid $40 or $50 for the game if we had gotten a better designed map. This map is honestly on par with some of the poorly designed areas of ETS2 (like Germany, for example). Los Angeles is one of the largest cities in the United States and to be honest, it sure doesn't feel like it. Furthermore, there are several problems I have with the interstate design. In America, all interstates are made out to be highways with exits only. This is pretty similar to how the Autobahn is in Germany, or any other "A" or "E" road is in Europe (with exceptions in certain places in Europe of course, but I think most Europeans will know what I'm talking about). Yet on Interstate 15, I see areas where you can cross on to the left side of the highway and turn off. This is absolutely not how the highways look in America, even the remote parts.Furthermore, Interstate 15 doesn't drop drivers off in the middle of nowhere, it continues all the way out to San Diego and terminates there on another freeway in the center of the city. Looking at Interstate 10, there is no indication of the many derivatives it makes around Los Angeles as well as the many freeways surrounding Interstate 5, as well as their interchange which, in reality, is extremely complex! Los Angeles in my opinion is almost as poorly designed as London was in ETS2! And then there's the scale. I can understand why the 1:32.5 scale was implemented, but in my opinion, it makes the deliveries seem way too short and it's very unrealistic that in game I can drive across the state of California (west to east, certainly not north to south) in around 10-15 minutes. No delivery is that short and it really kills the feeling of immersion you get when driving across the American interstates. 1:1 is obviously not what I would have wanted or hoped for, but 1:32.5 is overdoing it a tad. 1:19 or ETS2 or even 1:16 would have been better to use. I understand that we're only dealing with the very first iteration of the game here, but they could have definitely done better than this. It's honestly kind of pathetic.

Now let's look at the driving system.

Here I must say, I have some accolades. The trucks steer like they should, drive like they should and the engines seem appropriately powerful for American trucks. Everything here appears to be in order, and I can turn right on red without getting tickets. I can definitely agree with this. I also liked how SCS setup speed traps in certain places, as this is very realistic to what you would see in America on the interstates; cops hiding out looking to fill their monthly speeding ticket quota. The weigh station was a very good choice to implement into ETS2 as well. One thing I do take issue with is the lack of tolled bridges and roads in California (especially San Francisco, though I haven't been up there yet so my judgment on this area will have to wait) but a quick survey showed no toll markers on the minimap like there are in ETS2. This is quite disappointing in all honesty, as there are tolled highways in Los Angeles and San Diego as well as tolled bridges in San Francisco.

Now looking at the companies and trailers:

These were pretty well done. There were some very high quality trailers that gave me a similar feeling to what I would have had when passing them by on the highways as I do in the US every day. I understand, again, that they can't use real companies names so they have to use the closest possible alternative, but for what they had to work with, it isn't all too bad. Trailers are of reasonable length, cargo is of decent variety and all is well in that regard.

AI Traffic:

AI was actually pretty diverse. It suffers from the same issue as ETS2 in that there is not nearly enough traffic on the roads, but modders will be able to easily fix this with a traffic mod, so no sweat here. There is however a good diversity of traffic on these roads, and its somewhat appropriate by area. All things considered, AI traffic was done fairly well.


This is one that SCS I believe did another good job on. I have accolades and complaints for this one. First looking at a complaint: THE CITIES ARE WAY TOO SMALL. I know I mentioned this in map, but you have no idea how game-breaking this is for me. San Diego is massive in real life, and it certainly doesn't feel it here. However, looking at some of the smaller cities such as Carlsbad, things seem appropriately scaled. Furthermore, the designs of the building prefabs are well-varied and well placed. It's not like in ETS2 where you would copy 100 buildings and the cities seemed copied and pasted. Nothing like that is going on here, each city is unique. Furthermore, the detail on the vegetation outside of the city in the countryside is incredible, as is the terrain. Mountains exist where there should be mountains, deserts are appropriately placed and California (at least the southern part) is appropriately dry and treeless. Sounds and such of the environment are also fairly well done.

I would talk about trucks, but given the fact that this portion is largely unfinished I do not feel it is fair to pass judgment on this featureat this time.

Whew that was a lot to write! Overall: Game scores a 6/10

Could have done a lot better implementing many features, but there were things done here that were also done very well and SCS appears to have learned (somewhat) from their mistakes making ETS2.
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03 Feb 2016 06:03

Yeah the map is a problem.
I was disappointed when I got from San Francisco to Oxnard in ~10 minutes. This route took me 5 hours in real life!!!
San Francisco itself is actually alright. I could recognize the general neighborhood I was in, but I don't think they layout they used was optimal. Also they are missing San Jose which is actually bigger than San Francisco and way more important for truckers...
And the only way south from San Francisco is the coastal highway?!?! It may be pretty, but in real life, that road is only used by tourists, let alone trucks! They should have sacrificed the coastal highway (CA 1) for highway US 101 for between SF and Santa Cruz.

In summary:
Amazing effort by SCS at making a beautiful map but the very fundamentals (layouts and map scale) fell a bit flat.

This state is actually pretty well done. Las Vegas is the best city in the game.
Mapping... somewhere

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03 Feb 2016 08:06

@kobra1212 you just saved me 20 minutes of typing because my review would have looked exactly like yours. Great review explaining the good and bad. I agree that California needs a lot of work and isn't represented the way it should. It looks pretty no doubt but it doesn't feel right and I've been to Cali many time in my life. I think Nevada is well done. I'm wondering if Nevada was done later and they realized the mistakes they made with California in regards to road layout. I would also like to see more signage (highway shields, distance signs, etc.

I give ats a 7/10. No multiplayer (yet), no dx11 (yet), road system not accurate in Cali. And a few important details missing

I think that SCS will resolve some of those issues. Pavel cares about the community and SCS does listen. As for the map, hopefully California gets the promods treatment.
Other than that great work SCS. The future looks very promising!
Last edited by cdawg9999 on 03 Feb 2016 11:23, edited 1 time in total.

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03 Feb 2016 10:16

It's only a game guys, and trust me, french highways are very very bad in ETS2 no more than 2 lanes each way, A4 going through Reims, etc... But i don't complain. At the moment, i've seen a game with a lot of potential. From the point of view of a little froggie who never been in the US, it's beautifull and maybe full of clichés, but i like it. Like those things crossing the road in the desert like in western movies. The thing i like too is the night environment in cities, looks better than ETS2 for me.

But, those 3d truck models are horrible. Not at the level of last trucks for ets2, maybe not at the level of the originals 7. I hope they'll work on those models in the future.

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03 Feb 2016 16:40

Thanks guys for your reviews about the new game from SCS , even some of them says that the game is pretty good.

I don't want the box taking dust after playing after discovered both states available in the title , will wait for official DLC or from modders from extra states.
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