Scania Truck Driving Simulator, the new production of SCS Software from our southern border, is diametrically different from other types of titles in terms of the structure of the gameplay. In the vast majority of games in which we were at the wheel of powerful tiers, our primary task was to deliver goods, make cash, and develop a transport company. Despite the new territories, constantly updated truck models and improved graphics for the long run for most gamers (except for the fiery fans of this type of simulator, of course), this has become a tedious and demanding affair. Scania Truck Driving Simulator is a completely different position, with a number of different modes of play and - most importantly - much more interesting than its predecessors.
The new Czech work greatly expands the gameplay possibilities we saw in Trucks & Trailers last year, where our main task was to learn how to park trucks in a variety of conditions and locations. STDS develops these assumptions by putting in some ingenious game modes practically everything a virtual driver needs to master a powerful eight-wheel drive. Thanks to the specially designed "Beginners" module, we will learn to turn, turn around and back up with a towed trailer - although the initial tasks of simply passing and retracting to a designated place do not make much of a problem. However, with the increasing level of difficulty, you really need to be strong enough to meet the requirements.
Due to the purely simulated driving model, turning complex serpentines on the back or back-to-back arches, the keyboard is incredibly painstaking with the keyboard. Really feel that we are running a powerful, massive vehicle that requires a lot of manoeuvring skills - having a steering wheel or even a joypad helps in driving. Each challenge is additionally appropriately evaluated - the points pool is distributed between the passage time and its "cleanliness" (of course every precipitation is equal to negative points), and gratification is obtained by using only the camera located in the driver's cab.
After intensive study, it is time to confront our skills with extremely difficult routes. In the "Driver Contest" mode we will find challenges faithfully reproduced on the basis of championship competitions organized by the Swedish truck manufacturer cyclically. Although it is only a dozen or so competitors, each one tests not only our skills and watchmaking precision, but also angelic patience - the passing of a given section requires a circumferential limitation on the bollards and barriers of centimetres, and each contact with an obstacle is immediately reflected in the final statistics. Making a mistake-free trial usually costs a lot of time to eliminate even the smallest mistakes - truck maniacs are probably rubbing their hands on the ability to grind their skills, while ordinary players are likely to get rested after a few attempts: the difficulty level is really tight. Well, such a charm of racial simulators. The additional flavors make it possible to compare our performance with the results of the best players by using online statistics - as you can see where our work is going to be, and what distance separates us from the best virtual drivers.
However, nothing will replace the testing of driving techniques in the natural environment - such as the option "Dangerous crossings", where we find dozens of routes with varying degrees of difficulty, each of them characterized by different scenery and ambushes for confident drivers. So here we are going to Peru, where we will try to reach one end of the famous Death Road, we will try to help flood victims, ground. Each route is completely different natural conditions and the need to adjust the driving style to the road we move. Running a dozen or so tonnes of Colossus over an old, worn bridge is more like walking on stilts than a quiet ride, and similar situations in these dozens of scenarios will find plenty of it.
The creators have also decided to investigate our reaction to the surprisingly dangerous route - in the game we will find four challenges in which the braking time is measured against dynamically emerging obstacles. Doing all the tasks in a decent style is at least a dozen hours of fun - there is a great variety of missions and their number: it is evident that the creators have considered the subject and decided to give players something more than a comprehensive parking study.
The game also has the flagship for a series of driving options with the option of moving goods - this time we get medium size town with the small periphery. How nice to see at last something that is much different from the standard so far view of four streets and several buildings acting as eg Berlin - this time it looks really quite concrete. The architecture of the city is diverse - there is no shortage of spectacular flyovers, tall buildings and a dense network of streets. In addition, the creators pay attention not only to speed limits but also to traffic lights - every passage on the "red" is acknowledged with a relevant message. I did not notice that the offences reflected on the score of our activity, but good that finally the rules are reflected in the gameplay. It is perfectly clear that Scania Truck Driving Simulator is a testing ground before the forthcoming Euro Truck Simulator 2, where we will probably see a number of solutions used in this game. The developers also offer the possibility of exploring a resort located in Södertälje, Sweden, where Scania is headquartered - where we can travel to specially prepared test vehicles for new routes, while also checking your skills. By comparing the area of pictures presented in the game, one must admit that the authors did a great job and faithfully reproduced its actual size and architecture.
In terms of visual design, the STDS still displays a decent, level. Although not arousing some great delight, but you can see that the graphics have not slept the last few months. Of course, there is a very nice model of a truck that we go through all the available routes, but nothing bad can be said about the elements of the surroundings or animations of vehicles moving on the streets of the city. We still have comic relief accidents involving our truck - cars that participated in an eighteen-wheel collision immediately turn on and switch on the emergency lights. Unfortunately, we must forget about any model of damage, but it seemed rather obvious. A good word can not be said about the musical setting - although it is difficult to have any objections to the sounds of the truck, so one monotonous song played over and over on the menu a bit mysterious. The game optimization itself is not very good either - to enjoy the full details, we need really crazy hardware, which - frankly - is quite astonishing. The key is, however, that the creators managed to reproduce the impression of driving a huge colossus with a trailer - any, even the smallest mistake could cause the trimigar truck to be on the side railing or collide head-on with the oncoming vehicle. In terms of driving physics, the STDS is 100% tested.
Although not much indicates, the Scania Truck Driving Simulator is a really good option for truck fans who still want to grind their skills and confront them with very demanding challenges. It seems that we are dealing with a game intended for loyal fans of the series - the level of difficulty turns out to be quite high and the average players may have problems with completing all the tasks, but after a few hours of training one can not overlook the progress in the art of managing an eighteen. The men of SCS Software have made a great effort to fill their players' waiting time with their most important production - Euro Truck Simulator 2 - and they have offered a really solid load of difficult gameplay that will surely last for days.