Released in January 16th 2013, this truck simulator still takes the podium for being one of the most popular and intriguing simulators on the market today. Some of you will definitely make the point that this simulator is quite an old one now, but we can assure you that it does not show it’s age and that it has evolved remarkably. SCS software (the creators) have done a great job from the start, maintaining and bringing out new content in the game.
What We Like About Ets2:
Probably the best thing about this simulator is just how realistic so many aspects of it are. For example, all of the roads on Ets2 are real European roads, many of which are frequently used by truckers in real life. Many of them, particularly the main motorways, look extremely similar to how they would in real life – they have signposts which have the same design as signposts in the countries where they are. Also, the scenery seen from the road reflects the real life scenery in the areas that you drive through.
For example, around Switzerland, Austria and some of France, the scenery is mountainous as this is where the Alps are located. Also, in Northern France, Belgium and the Netherlands the scenery is flat, green and somewhat dull – but again, it is like this in real life. It would be easy for SCS software to make all areas and roads look the same, but having variety in scenery and realistic roads really does make a lot of difference to the gaming experience.
Each brand has a collection of dealerships, which can be found in cities that you drive through. For example, Iveco has dealerships in Frankfurt, Brussels and Grimsby as well as a few others. If you are starting a new profile on Ets2 and you know which brand has dealerships in each city, you may wish to make your home city (it lets you do this when making your profile, this is where your first garage is located) a city where your favourite brand has a dealership.
Going back to the trucks themselves, they are all real life models – if you live in Europe then you will certainly see some of the trucks on Ets2 on roads nearby to you! Each brand has top of the range models, which are the most powerful and the most capable of the brand that you are buying from. However, if you buy a bottom range truck, you can upgrade it at a repair centre and soon be driving a top of the range truck.
Volvo have the most powerful truck in the simulator – their top of the range model has an impressive 750bhp. When doing quick jobs in different trucks, you will probably soon have a favourite brand – many people, as seen on Steam forums, disagree on which is the best. To find out which is our favourite, read our Euro Truck Simulator 2 Truck Brand Rankings article!
What We’re Less Keen On With Ets2 and How it Could Improve
There isn’t really a lot to criticize with Ets2. However, there are several things that we wish they would do to improve the gaming experience.
For example, it would be nice if more cities, particularly smaller ones, were included in the map – this would give more options on destinations and home cities. It will also give more gamers the chance to experience their hometowns on a simulator. There are also some larger cities which would be expected to be included but are not – Bristol in the UK for example is a large place but it isn’t in Ets2.
Another very specific improvement that could be made is some of the junctions in the UK, which have narrow unrealistic slip roads. The rest of Europe has more realistic ones. France had this problem previously but this was addressed when the Vive La France was made. Finally, some roads – particularly narrow mountain roads – are extremely difficult to drive on even if you are the most careful driver and although these roads are realistic it is questionable whether trucks would drive on roads like this in reality.
The Map and Map Extension DLCs
The Ets2 map covers a wide range of countries in Europe. The simulator without DLCs includes the following: the UK, North and Eastern France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Northern Italy, Western Poland, the Czech Republic and Bratislava in Slovakia. With the Going East DLC, you can have all of Poland as well as all of the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary. With the Scandinavian DLC, some of Sweden, Norway and all of Denmark are included and with the Vive La France DLC, you’ve guessed it – all of France is included!
As of late 2017, a new DLC called Italia which adds all of Italy is also available and in late 2018, yet another map extension DLC was introduced, this time allowing you to drive in Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and parts of Southern Finland and Western Russia.
Even without the map extension DLCs, an impressive amount of countries are covered and as we’ve said earlier, the scenery changes in each country and region to reflect the vastly different scenery found in different parts of Europe.
If you get bored with all that this simulator offers, then there is no need to quit playing it as you can easily download some DLCs from Steam (if you purchased it from Steam). We’ve already talked about map extension DLCs, but there are many other outstanding DLCs on offer as well, such as trailer packs, cabin accessories, tuning packs and paint job packs.
Another impressive thing about Ets2 is the many choices of truck brand that can be driven. This is one area where Ets2 definitely beats Ats – as there are only 2 choices of truck on Ats. There are 7 choices of brand on Ets2; all of them are real brands (although several years ago, not all of them were).
As you probably have figured out from the fact that the positives section is far longer than the negatives section, we are enormous fans of this simulator! We love many things about it, from the detailed roads to the large map and from the trucks themselves to the sense of achievement after a long drive! Therefore, we would recommend it to anyone who is keen on transport simulators and who wants a simulator that will keep them busy, entertained and wowed!