Euro Truck Simulator 2 – The Virtual World of Truck Driving.
Released in 2012 as the follow-up to the aptly named Euro Truck Simulator, the SCS developed and published game has since become a cult phenomenon in the gaming world. Selling over 5 million units on Steam, it remains the staple of realistic driving simulators on the gaming market.
But why? Why is a game, simulating our everyday work, so popular amongst gaming fans? And, is this simulator encouraging more young people to pursue a career in professional driving? In this article, we’ll be speaking to a long-time fan of the simulator franchise. We’ll ask what it is that makes the franchise so popular, what their views are on actual trucking, and more.
Let’s get into it.
What’s the Appeal of Euro Truck Simulator?
As is the norm with many simulator-based games, Euro Truck Simulator 2 is exclusive to PC. This means it can’t be played on consoles such as the Playstation or Xbox. However, despite this, it’s still managed to rack up an impressive sales record. It also boasts a consistent playerbase averaging at around 20,000 players last month at the time of writing.
“I think it’s the blend of being the ultimate relaxing game, whilst also being challenging enough to keep me interested. I play both Euro Truck Simulator and American Truck Simulator, and I’ve easily spent at least 500 hours playing them, which isn’t a lot compared to other players,” says our truck simulator expert. “There’s something very satisfying about finishing a job, getting paid, upgrading your truck with a new light bar or something, then moving on to the next job.”
Casual Gamers Vs Hardcore.
One of the biggest appeals of Euro Truck Simulator 2 is the fact it can appeal to both the casual and the hardcore members of the gaming community. But what do I mean by this?
Well, this isn’t your average game. Playing a short session online, you’ll soon see LGV’s parked in laybys, not moving. However, if you start to drive on the wrong side of the road, or start swerving recklessly, you’ll soon be warned by these parked trucks. If you continue, you can expect to be swiftly removed from the session. These parked trucks are actually moderators of the online server, there to ensure that players not only behave themselves but adhere to the spirit of role-playing. This means if you break the immersion of being a real truck driver, you’ll soon be removed and possibly banned from that server.
This is the type of dedication players have for this game. Not only this but many of the playerbase, our inside expert included, have their own personal setup. These often include realistic steering wheels, peddles, gear sticks, and even custom-made seats to make their setup as immersive as possible.
“I used to play it on a laptop with a console controller,” says our expert, “since then I’ve spent maybe £1000 on a PC, steering wheel, peddles, etc to play it. It’s a lot of money to spend on a virtual truck sim, and whenever I say I’m a fan everybody says: “that’s silly,” but everyone I know that’s tried it has thoroughly enjoyed it. And they soon see the appeal. As soon as they’re driving along a motorway in The Netherlands or something, looking out the window and seeing beautiful mountains, they all end up saying “oh wow, this is cool” or something similar. I think everyone can see the appeal when they touch it. It’s a phenomenon, really. Part of the appeal [for me] is definitely the steering wheel and peddles. Without it, it does lose its magic.”
Why Simulated Trucking Over Real Trucking?
So, with this rising popularity on simulated trucking, is it translating to the real world? Are players of Euro Truck Simulator 2 interested or actively pursuing a career in truck driving?
Sadly, I was unable to reach out to the wider fanbase of the community to get a solid answer. However, lucky for us, our resident Euro Truck Simulator player was on-hand to give us some answers.
“I have considered real-world trucking; I would consider it. In fact, I’m quite curious to see how well the skills transfer over. I remember when I worked with my dad on his sight, I’d been playing truck sim for a while, I was maybe 16 at the time? We’d been playing truck sim for one or two years by that point. We had a lorry that would haul trailers around and containers around sight, but it wasn’t roadworthy. My dad decided he’d let me drive it around for a bit, helping out for fun and to help teach me something. He was quite impressed when he got me to reverse it, and still to this day it’s got to be because of truck sim.”
In all, it’s safe to say that the modern world is a constantly changing place, with people finding all sorts of ‘everyday’ tasks fascinating. And, in many ways, this can only help benefit industries such as ours. As, if only 1% of players such as those of Euro Truck Simulator 2 commit to a career in truck driving, it’s still more drivers than we would have had before. And, with the shortage of drivers reported over the last few years, it’s safe to say that, even if more of these players commit to a career in driving, it offers no threat to our way of life.
In closing, our Euro Truck Simulator expert had this to say:
“If people play truck sim for the first time with just a basic controller or keyboard, it’d definitely lose its magic. You’ve got to be able to feel the road with a good steering wheel. Good steering wheels add that next-level immersion with the rumble of the engine and the bumps in the road. You’ve got to remember that a lot of people know how to drive a car better than how to use a controller. So, when they sit at a setup with the steering wheel and peddles, it instantly feels more natural, and they can get into the game straight away.
My mum’s boyfriend had a go with my setup, and he’s a professional truck driver. It was magical. It was natural to him and reversed a trailer in the first time. So, that says something about its accuracy that a real-life truck driver playing truck sim for the first time can actually reverse a trailer in, one of the more challenging aspects of the game, straight away.”
In short, I believe we should embrace these players and fans in any way we can. And, if you’re looking to embrace the lifestyle and become a truck driver for real, you’ll need to complete your driver CPC training. If you have any questions or would like to find out more, get in contact.
Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you on the roads!
The views portrayed in this article reflect those of the individuals only and not those of Flexistaff Solutions Ltd as a company.