ATS New Mexico: Places to Rest and Refuel
We are always thinking of opportunities to make our tech more flexible, to help us bring the “touch of real trucking spirit” into our virtual worlds. Besides driving, the places to stop and rest are an integral part of a driver’s life. We have decided that they deserve our focus now as we work on New Mexico DLC for American Truck Simulator.
Even smaller rest areas for New Mexico are now being created as custom works. Instead of monolithic prefabs used repeatedly across the world, we are now combining smaller building blocks into unique sets for each location. This approach also makes it easier to mix in location-specific objects.
An even greater amount of care is given to big truck stops. They are truly vast unique locations that are recognizable as real world landmarks. We have separated petrol stations for passenger cars and trucks. There are dedicated spots offering virtual drivers complete services as they are: fuel, repairs, rest, and services. This required a bit of technical innovation – we had to teach the AI drivers to navigate around the sprawling rest stops. The invisible AI guidance “rails” were historically only created in Maya or Blender as part of one-piece prefabs, but now the map designer will be able to flexibly lay them where needed. That should push the immersion depth and the overall feel of our truck stops to a new level.