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We’ve been drowned by E3 2019 this past week, but maybe you only waded into the river of game reveals and new trailers up to your ankles. If you didn’t get your hair wet, there might be some gems among the flotsam and jetsam that you missed. That’s what this post is for: we’ve rounded up our picks for the best games of E3, based on our own impressions of either seeing the games behind closed doors at the show, or of watching the videos from the comfort of our homes.
After several days of thomping basslines and screaming industry professionals in service of games that won’t be out until next year, tonight I am very much looking forward to a quiet drive through forested mountains. American Truck Simulator just launched its Washington expansion, adding another state to haul cargo through – a real pretty state at that. Sea! Mountains! Forests! Bridges! Logging roads! The Grand Coulee Dam! The Space Needle! Another city bearing the cursed name of Aberdeen! Places from Twin Peaks! Just me, the road, a riot grrrl playlist, and eighteen wheels of steel laden with logs that are already two hours late because I got distracted by a river and crashed into a tree.
America would have you believe that California is the locus of important video game happenings next week with E3. Pish. The real American excitement of next week is American Truck Simulator‘s Washington expansion, which developers SCS Software today announced they’ll launch on Tuesday the 11th. E3 be damned, I’m hopping in my virtuarig and driving out Los Angeles, up California and Oregon, past mountains, along coasts, through forests, and to that there Twin Peaks waterfall. Goodbye Geoff Keighley and hello Audrey Horne!
If there’s one game that has, for me, defined my last few years at RPS, it’s American Truck Simulator. That singular nexus of deadly serious simulation and twinkly-eyed, chill-out road trip has helped hold me together at times when both the world and my own world threatened to fall apart, but it’s also been a belated lesson that games need not be defined by skinner boxes and power fantasies. The magic of the ordinary, but the ordinary transplanted to another place, free from all pressures. Most of all, the peace and freedom of the road.
It’s now time for me to say goodbye, to RPS and perhaps to the overall business of writing opinions about videogames. There’s only one way to go out.
One last drive. And, thanks to some very kind folks at ATS developer SCS, I get to make that last drive in a work-in-progress build of the forthcoming Washington DLC – the state I’ve long been most desperate to drag 18 wheels across.
Freewheeling haul ’em up American Truck Simulator will be expanding into Washington State sometime this year, allowing players to explore from evergreen forest to concrete cargo port, and to travel under the ever-watchful eye of Seattle’s Space Needle.
Here s a teaser trailer, though it has nary a truck in sight: