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We really do have the #BestCommunityEver! In less than 24 hours of the #TruckAtHome event starting, drivers in Euro Truck Simulator 2 and American Truck Simulator taking part collectively drove 120 million kilometers (about 74 million miles) using our World of Trucks contracts and external market.



60 million of those first kilometers were driven in a 6 hour period (that's 10 million kms reached every hour). At the time of posting this blog, it is over 340 million kilometers (over 211 million miles) and we still have the weekend ahead of us.

As you have been actively reaching milestones by doing your part, we made sure to uphold our part of the deal to undertake positive action to help those who are combating COVID-19. At the time of writing this blog, we have donated over 260,000CZK (around €9,400) to various charities, like Covmask,[covmask.cz] who create much needed protective gear for medical personnel free of charge, to a team of very skilled and quite famous Czech chefs preparing, cooking and delivering food to paramedics, firefighters or policemen, and ADRA CZ[www.adra.cz] who provide bringing food and medicines to the elderly who are unable to leave their homes. And we plan to support financially even more targets!


We also have made use of one of our SCS On the Road vehicles during this important time. 3 members of our team have been driving to various local hospitals delivering essential and requested items from the staff who are working on the front line every day. So far we have donated several pallets worth of food and liquids to help keep staff energized during this busy time; as well as some much-needed equipment such as two-way radio transmitters which assist doctors & nurses in communicating when working in segregated areas of the hospital.


We also wanted to share a thank you to you our community, who have been actively driving day and night, and sharing your kind and positive words throughout this whole event. You really have been keeping us on our toes when it comes to reaching milestones, as you seem to reach the next one quicker than the last. This was especially evident on the 2nd of April as Euro Truck Simulator 2 broke its all-time player record peaking at 55,322 players, wow!

Behind all these incredible stats and actions, there is an important message to why we have been asking you to #TruckAtHome. Staying home is the most important thing you can do prevent the spread of COVID-19 in your area, and by doing so you are saving lives. If you do need to leave the house, make sure to wash your hands regularly for 30 seconds at a time. You can find more important health advice to follow from the World health organization, [www.who.int]or your local health services website.



Be sure to continue sharing your photos and videos as you #TruckAtHome with us on Twitter, Face[www.facebook.com]book[www.facebook.com] and our Instagram[www.instagram.com] using the hashtag. There is still time to join the event, you can find all the details at our blog post[blog.scssoft.com] or at https://worldoftrucks.com/en/.

The event will be concluded on Monday the 6th of April at 23:59 UTC.
Virtual Truckers of the world, we are all enduring a difficult time, as the world fights against COVID-19. It's time for us to respond in the best way we can.



Heroic drivers and support crew around the world are currently delivering much-needed supplies and providing life-saving services. Their work keeps the world moving and is incredibly challenging and dangerous.

When reflecting on this we might ask the question, what can we do. The scientific advice is clear, the best thing we can do is to stay at home and keep physical interaction to a minimum. So, we are calling on you, our #BestCommunityEver, as a salute to these heroes, to unite and to #TruckAtHome. Let's stand alone together, keep the world safe, and let's participate in a World of Trucks community event!




Our slogan for this event is #TruckAtHome and our goal is simple, to get as many people involved, in any way they can, while remaining at home. Complete as many jobs as you can, there is no special cargo and no minimum distance. Choose the longest jobs possible or do many short jobs, it's up to you because we are going to track the delivery distance required for all jobs completed, then add them up. You can even use your own trailers in the External Market!



We are in the middle of beta testing upcoming updates to our games, and injecting new content into the games is just not possible unless we restart the betas. So, instead of going the usual Steam Inventory route, we have had to improvise. As an incentive to get more players involved, we are providing a free Steam Workshop #TruckAtHome paint job mod for the event. We'll be handing out free Steam keys to get even more people playing. And, we also pledge to undertake positive actions to help those who are combating COVID-19, more details in the rules. The more distance covered during the event, the more keys we will give away and the more pledges we will make. Every kilometer, every mile counts! We feel that it is crucial to send the message now, when it matters most.
Event's paint job MODs can be downloaded here:



#TruckAtHome Event Rules:

Using External Contracts or External Market, with a World of Trucks-connected profile, in Euro Truck Simulator 2, American Truck Simulator or both, the community is to cover as much distance as possible while making deliveries. All completed jobs will have their planned route distance added to the event progress.

For each milestone of 20,000,000 km reached by the community, we will be offering Steam keys in a special social media giveaway campaign. Furthermore, we pledge to undertake a positive action to help those who are combating COVID-19 for each milestone reached, and will announce these on a case by case basis.

A player will reach their personal goal once they have delivered over a combined planned route distance of 2,500 km or more.
Reward:
Personal goal: An individual contribution of completed deliveries reaching a combined planned route distance of 2,500 km (ca. 1,600 miles) or more earns that player a prestigious World of Trucks Achievement. Then, after 1.37 has been released, we will further complement this with a special Steam inventory item reward, yet to be announced.

Community goals: For each milestone of 20,000,000 km (ca. 12,500,000 miles) reached by the community, we will be offering Steam keys in a special social media giveaway campaign. Furthermore, we pledge to undertake a positive action to help those who are combating COVID-19 for each milestone reached and will announce these on a case by case basis.


The event will be concluded on Monday the 6th of April at 23:59 UTC.



Let's get the message out there to #TruckAtHome, and make the world a safer place. Play Euro Truck Simulator 2 or American Truck Simulator during this unprecedented event. Any content under #TruckAtHome along with tagging our profiles on Facebook (SCS[www.facebook.com], ATS[www.facebook.com], ETS2[www.facebook.com]), Instagram[www.instagram.com] or Twitter will be in the running for a special reward. Post videos, take screenshots, write reviews, create chat rooms and discuss the event and message, make artwork about it. Do whatever it takes, just stay at home and stay safe. 

Are you an established streamer? Get in touch with us at press@scssoft.com to obtain Steam keys to engage your audience during the event. Please make sure your message is written in English.



We have crafted this event really quickly compared to previous events. It may not offer a glorious trailer to haul and we promised a reward only after 1.37, but it was undertaken because we feel it was the right thing to do, because it was the most we can do and because we feel the message needs to be sent out loud and clear, not next week, not tomorrow but now – stay home and stay safe. Thank you for understanding and enjoy the event!
Today, we are proud to bring you a new tuning pack created in close cooperation with HS-Schoch[www.hs-schoch.de], a leading truck tuning and accessories brand. While our previous tuning DLC's have been focused specifically on certain truck brands, our partnership with HS-Schoch has allowed us to obtain detailed 3D data references to bring these high quality accessories for a majority of the vehicles in ETS2.

Introducing the HS-Schoch Tuning Pack, Now Available for Euro Truck Simulator 2.



Since 1986, HS-Schoch has been a leading expert in the creation of truck styling and accessories for major truck brands across Europe. The foundations of HS-Schoch's success has been built on a high level of quality awareness, flexibility, and reliability, which we are excited to represent within our virtual trucking world.



  • DAF XF105
  • DAF XF
  • Iveco Stralis & Iveco Stralis Hi-Way
  • Mercedes-Benz Actros & Mercedes-Benz New Actros
  • Renault Magnum & Renault Trucks T
  • Scania R 2009/Streamline
  • Scania R/S
  • Volvo FH16 2009 & Volvo FH 2012
  • MAN TGX & TGX Euro 6
[/b]
[/list]

In this new pack, you will find an array of branded accessories, which can be used in a variety of combinations. Each of these accessories has been made according to HS-Schoch product catalogue, which they provided us for references.



We look forward to seeing how you will further customize your truck with this exciting new addition! Be sure to share your photos with us on our social media channels and with HS-Schoch on Instagram [www.instagram.com]and Facebook[www.facebook.com] with the hashtag #HSSchoch.

https://store.steampowered.com/app/1209461/Euro_Truck_Simulator_2__HSSchoch_Tuning_Pack/
A Fistful of Dollars, Winnetou Return and Once Upon a Time in the West; these are all famous movies that are based in wild wild west of America, featuring traditional cowboy shootouts and close-ups of squinting eyes (yee-haw!). But did you know all of these Eurowestern classics were filmed in the hot and dusty deserts of Spain?



Located in the south-east of Iberia and often nicknamed 'mainland Europe's only desert', you will find the Tabernas Desert, a dry but beautiful part of the Spanish mainland. This part of Iberia will also be the first desert climate to ever feature in Euro Truck Simulator 2; and offers a very unique contrast to the lush and green forests that dominate the rest of the continent.


In these desert areas, the sun shines for over 3,000 hours a year and sees as little as 240mm annual rainfall (unless you turn the rain slider up) so make sure to bring plenty of drinking water, and sunscreen on your journey, as temperatures can soar up to 51°C, but as low as -1°C during the winter. These extreme climates make for harsh terrain, in which very little vegetation grows



So whether you are just traveling through, or taking the scenic route, be sure to look out for the locations of famous movies, tumbleweed, and cowboys... because this town ain't big enough for the two of us, partner.

Remember to check out our Instagram[www.instagram.com], Facebook[www.facebook.com], and Twitter for more exclusive images not found on this blog!
Following increased and overwhelming concerns regarding the novel coronavirus, we have had to adjust to the new situation.



As of today, all employees of SCS Software's Prague studio have switched to home office. Last week on Wednesday, we trialed a one-day test with the whole company working from home to test the waters; and on Thursday and Friday, we were already packing up computers, hardware and assisting our teams in moving them to their homes if help was required.

We are doing this to protect the health of our staff, but we also see this as our social responsibility. The fewer people there are using public transportation, the fewer opportunities will the virus have available to spread further. We all need to do our part to contain and mitigate it.


This will inevitably affect our productivity, and we have yet to understand what kind of impact it makes on our production schedules. We need to learn a lot of new skills for team communication and planning; there are a lot of junior designers in the teams who will now require training and assistance remotely, putting strain on our seniors.

These worries are, of course, trivial compared to the massive problems that the whole of mankind will be facing in coming weeks and months. We will all need to brace for hard times. But we do understand that our fanbase expects honest communication from us, and any news we can provide on improvements and new features and content we are working on.

Our blog and our social media channels will remain our primary communication platforms, and we will do our best to keep the flow of the news regular, informative and entertaining.

We would also like to provide you with up to date information regarding our attendance of upcoming events.

Owing to the extraordinary circumstances and challenges posed by the current COVID-19 outbreak, the Mid-American Trucking Show has been cancelled; you can find more information on their homepage[www.truckingshow.com]. Twitchcon EU has also recently released a statement[twitchcon.com], in which they announced the cancellation of their event. Anyone with bookings to TwitchCon EU or MATS 2020 should reach out directly to the organizers for more information regarding their tickets.

For the safety and well-being of our team and the community, we will be carefully considering our plans for upcoming future events such as Truck World Canada[www.truckworld.ca] (which has been recently rescheduled) and Truckfest Peterborough. We will post an announcement here on our blog or on our social media channels on any further changes to our travel plans.

Unfortunately we also regret to inform you that the SCS E-Shop will no longer be accepting any new orders and will be closed until further notice. Any orders that have been made and paid up until today will still be processed. If you any further questions regarding orders, please contact eshop@scssoft.com

We thank you for your understanding, and we apologise to our community who may have made plans to meet us at any of the cancelled events. We will continue to keep you posted in the coming months.
Dominik Luska is a 3D graphic artist working at the SCS Software for more than 4 years and has worked on almost all currently released map expansions. His job description consists of recording animations in motion capture, modelling, retopology of a high-resolution model, texturing and importing the model into the game. He works alongside Animator and Map Designers to create pedestrians, workers and other living characters that can be seen in our truck simulator games.



If you are interested in how are we create people and animal animations that can be found within Euro / American Truck Simulator, you've come to the right place. First and foremost, I need to emphasize that pedestrians and other characters don't play an important role as trucks and depots, not even close. However, they still play a role in our games, so we need to make sure they receive the appropriate care. At this moment, we have over 30 character models in our trucking titles. They are all characters you can see around our world. For example, you can see, security workers, police and customs officers, people taking photos of oversized cargo on their phones and more. To create a world full of life, we need to differentiate them from each other by their actions, their animations and by their looks. Some of them are universal, of course, so we use them between projects to save work and time. Besides those universal, we have specific characters for a more specific project, country or city. For each character, there are four textures, two for clothing and two for the body.

There are also additional items (or as we call them „props“) which our characters can hold or use, these items are included in final animation files. The amount of data for these models and animations are not insignificant, and to help us not to become confused between textures and models, we're using an absolute classic - Total Commander. Every file has a naming convention in English language to make it accessible and understandable to everyone.



When we're importing finished data into the game, we need to save exported model or animation and also a source file for these animations od models; just in case we need to make some adjustment or change in the future. We have a whole folder structure specifically for animations, models, textures, and a skeleton. Data organization doesn't end by files, folders and their naming convention though. We can't forget about the flawless management of each model in definition files that is nearly as important as previously mentioned folder structure. To give you some basic introduction to definition files, every single model has to have the correct unique designation number and a brief name for Map Designers.



At the very beginning, we create a model according to a reference file. These references are sourced from our Researchers - a special department in our company who are responsible for searching up data, pictures and information; simply anything the rest of the company needs, saving a lot of time to Modellers, Animators and Map Designers. This first model is called "LOD 0". This abbreviation means „Level of Detail“ and this system serves to toggle between lower and higher resolution models according to the range from the point of view. We have 4 LODs in our game for characters; in which the last of them serves for 100+ meters distances. LOD has to be thoroughly checked too for drastic changes, for example, we don't want to have legs or head disappearing within 10 meters of its viewpoint. Some animated models also have a "collision model", which stops players going through a character. Such a collision model are found on non-animated and static models too. And why don't we allow people to go through buildings and characters? Because our games have received an age rating of 3, which we'd like to keep. Thanks to it, anyone can play our games, even kids.


When we're satisfied with the model and its LODs, we will move to the UV mapping, or rather unwrapping of a 3D model on a 2D plane, so the texture can be created. This process also takes some time mainly because of the more important parts of the model get a bigger space on the texture. That means UV unwrapping must be created as effectively as possible. For example, we mirror small parts of the model like caps, helmets and other props, which spares a precious space on the following texture for this model. After this, we create a texture for this model according to the references we have received. Every character gets a normal map. A normal map is a picture, which simulates a soft geometric structure, which is used to create an illusion of higher detail on a low-resolution model. Normal maps are used for folds, buttons, embroidery, pockets and similar details.

After we're done with the textures and model, a more interesting and yet also a little bit frustrating process begins, recording character animations. To save time and energy on NOT doing it the most time and energy demanding way, we're using an improvised motion capture (MoCap), which we use to record rough animation foundations. I'm saying "rough" because amongst the disadvantages of this type of mocap is its accuracy on important bones, such as collarbones or wrists. We're not using full-fledged mocap, but a cheaper variant built on two Kinect sensors (2nd generation). These sensors use a depth camera, and since they're standing against each other, they "see" how a man or woman moves on the scene with some accuracy. This animation method has one advantage, you don't need any special clothes or markers, so anyone can get on scene and start recording. Thanks to this technology we can take anyone in the company and put him in front of the cameras to bring the character models to life.

Before we start recording an animation, our mocap has to be prepared and calibrated. It is necessary to do a short test & calibration recording. This takes up to two hours because there may be problems on different levels, for example, the stations may encounter problems communicating with each other, operating system might be updating just in the right moment when we would like to use it and many other issues can appear. After successful calibration and recording session, we need to adjust these recorded animations "manually" in different programs. In this case, we commonly adjust noise and tremors, movements of bones in the wrong axes, or movements of the wrists that our mocap did not pick up. To understand the recording process fully in detail, we would need to create a separate article, so let's go to the final stage, importing data into our game.

So our finished model with animation is now ready to be put into the game. To make the editor "see" our model, we need to define it correctly in a text file (definition file). In this file, both animated and unanimated models have a link to the model, to its LODs and potentially animation and collision.

When we successfully define the model, we can finally see it in the editor. The editor is our own tool, in which Map Designers build the whole map and in which our Graphic designers are checking on their own models. If there's something wrong, we'll adjust the model or animation in 3D programs like Maya or Blender and re-export it. Since the definition is already there, we can just refresh the model in Editor to see changes right away. It's similar to refreshing a website on the web browser. Models and animations are created in Autodesk Maya, and textures in Adobe Photoshop. To create a normal map, we have to import the model to Marmoset Toolbag software, which serves for "baking" details from the high-resolution model to the low-resolution model. The whole process is more complicated than what I have written here, but then this blog would be twice as long (and maybe even more).

I do hope that I've explained it well enough for you to have some insight into our work. And if you liked the article and you'd like to want more, let us know in comments - and don't be shy to say what exactly interests you.
Did you know we have a gallery where you can upload your images from Euro Truck Simulator 2 or American Truck Simulator for the world to see? You may have seen them featured on the World of Trucks[worldoftrucks.com] homepage before, or even between loading screens; but who chooses these images and who is submitting them?



Three times a week, a few anonymous members of our team known as 'The Editor' chooses from the hundreds of thousands of images uploaded to WoTr gallery[www.worldoftrucks.com] by you our community. Once a decision has been made, six images are chosen and the users are awarded the Editors Pick achievement and are featured on the front page of World of Trucks. However, this is no easy task as there are so many great pictures to choose from!

Today we are proud to be celebrating the 1000th WoTr Editor's choice to be featured within our game. Since 2013 we have been showcased over 6000 images, which in total so far have gathered over 4 million views, 3.9 million likes, and over 3 million comments! It just goes to show how big our trucking family really is.



So how do you submit an image to our WoTr gallery? First and most importantly, you will need a World of Trucks account, be sure to sign up[www.worldoftrucks.com]. Once you're registration, be sure to connect your ETS2 or ATS profile to your WoTr account (which can be found on the profile selection screen). Once you have successfully connected your profile, start snapping! You can use the in-game photo studio and screenshot manager to take photos and upload them directly to the WoTr gallery, which you can then view on WorldofTrucks.com.

Then it is a matter of hoping you grab the attention of one of the ever-elusive Editors. We look forward to seeing more of your amazing images every day. Be sure to link us your WoTr profile in the comments, we may just take a look and tip-off the Editor on any potential images. Just remember, don't snap and drive ;)
Due to popular demand, the return of video contest has been a success! This year we allowed you to record on Euro Truck Simulator 2 and American Truck Simulator, which brought a lot of variety to the videos submitted.



Our committee of judges really enjoyed watching all your videos, even if it did mean settling down for hours at a time to do so. We were especially surprised by the creativity and work that went into some these entries.

There was an overwhelming majority of ETS2 videos - which is somewhat surprising, considering ATS videos could've been from two states, both single and combined. So due to the ratio, 4 winning videos are from good old Europe and 1 from the States!

HetriX with a professional trailer!


Thizorac with a wonderful Twin Peaks references!


JekaArtz with a well-balanced video!


Tamás Vajvoda (so epic as a whole, we expected a dragon somewhere in there!)


Toast (European trucking with American country music!)


It wasn't an easy choice to pick our winners, as some of the other videos came close to reaching a top 5 spot, however, we have decided to give some of these videos honourable mention special prize for their efforts!

We have also picked some of your entries to be featured on our social media channels, because of the number of great videos you've sent us. We certainly did enjoy watching them all! Be sure to look out for them on our official Facebook[www.facebook.com] and Twitter accounts.

Unfortunately, not all entries made it to our judging panel as they did not reach the requirements we set for the contest, so make sure to read the rules carefully next time!

Also, if you have any feedback, wishes or requests, please let us know in the comment section. What would you change to make our future contests easier or more interesting? Would you like a different format?  One of the more popular bits of feedback we received, which was to reply/ confirm/ validate every entry that was received unfortunately isn't possible for us.

A BIG thank you to everyone who participated and congratulations to our top 5! All winners will be contacted and notified by the email from which they sent their entry.
Sound plays a very important role in interactive games, which is why we are very excited to introduce a new sound engine to the worlds of Euro Truck Simulator 2 and American Truck Simulator in the near future.



FMOD[www.fmod.com] is a proprietary sound effects engine that will allow us to make really dynamic and complex audio. We have been working on implementing it for a long time already, and our sound designer has already poured hundreds of hours into implementing new vehicle sounds. Eventually, the changes to our soundscape will be more profound as we plan to revisit ambient sound sources all around the environment, this is planned to appear in the game through a series of follow-up updates. The feedback we receive from our community will surely play an important role in how we tune and tweak the sfx in future updates, we expect it to take some iterations.



Another part of the community that might be excited (or nervous) for such a change is our modders. Honestly, they will need to start from scratch to plug their sounds back into the game, as the changes in data structures are considerable. This update will make most existing sound mods incompatible. The silver lining is that the new wealth of features in the sound library will allow for way more fidelity especially with vehicle sounds, so we hope that the deep changes we are coming with will be appreciated. FMOD offers a free application[www.fmod.com] for everyone to use, so mod creators will have the some power available to them as our own sound department. To help with the transition, we also plan on releasing some useful tutorials to help you become familiar with this new software.

For those with an eye for detail, you may have noticed a picture we shared across our social media channels this past weekend to tease you. Did you spot it? A long-awaited requested feature will be made possible with this FMOD update - the ability to roll down your truck windows! Look out for a more detailed blog post in a few days!


While we still have a long way to go with this big new feature, we hope you will enjoy this sneak-peak of what is to come and how this new sound engine and the Doppler effect will change the way you hear things around you in ETS2 and ATS.
Sometimes driving the highway can be lonely work, you may have the radio playing, or even have the GPS Voice Navigation enabled, but nothing beats the feeling of driving together with a fellow trucker.

This Valentines Day, we want to share that same feeling with the community we love. We hope to see you out driving on the roads with us in the future.



Loads of Love,
SCS Software :mcheart:

P.S: We are also sharing the love with our weekly sale on Steam, with a variety of discounts available across the Euro Truck Simulator 2 and American Truck Simulator range. Be sure to check it out!