American Truck Simulator: Oregon Review – In Oregon, Every Road is the “Scenic Route”

American Truck Simulator: Oregon
SCS Software

Since its debut back in February of 2016, American Truck Simulator has entranced thousands of gamers not only because of its brilliantly simple concept—driving up and down highways and delivering goods—but also because of its relaxing gameplay.

Being able to travel to parts of some of the more prominent states within the western United States has been a real treat for me personally, and I consider ATS likened to almost more of a tourism sim instead of a transportation one. In fact, it never really feels like I’m “working” when I play the game because the experiences are just so tranquil overall.

American Truck Simulator: Oregon, is a real gaming treat that I’ve finally had some time to try out, and boy, am I glad I did. “The Beaver State” as it is known (get your minds out of the gutter), is one of the most mesmerizing states yet, and arrived just when I thought that their New Mexico DLC couldn’t be topped. While I still consider New Mexico to be great as well, the two states are just so different that I can’t really compare them.

ATS: Oregon swaps the ruggedly handsome, arid and rocky terrain that I’m used to seeing throughout Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, and parts of California, for lush greenery, rolling emerald hills, and trickling streams.

It was an especially sublime (and eye-opening) experience for me since, although I’ve driven through Oregon on more than one occasion in real life, I’ve never really jumped off of the Interstate 5 in order to explore its environs further. I do, however, through playing this DLC, more fully realize now just why Oregon is known as the Beaver State, as there are miles and miles of churning rivers winding their way throughout the state.

Another thing that dawned on me during my ATS: Oregon playthroughs is that most of Oregon’s roads (at least the more rural ones) are flanked tightly by dense woods and shrubbery. Just when I thought that Northern California took the prize for the most “super forest-y” state, this DLC showed me that Oregon even more greenery, especially the farther away you get from its urban centers.

As I traveled over Oregon’s highways and smaller roads I caught myself simply gawking at the quaint farmhouses and stores that I passed while navigating between the DLC’s fourteen major urban areas, which are situated evenly throughout the map.

While I believe Arizona, Nevada, and certainly parts of California have more hills and mountainous regions within them, Oregon does sport some challenging inclines from time to time. Overall, however, the drive is much smoother in Oregon, which I found to be the perfect excuse to continue to stare—with mouth agape—at its surreal splendor. I can imagine that more than a few gamers have planned road trips to Oregon solely as a result of beholding all of its natural beauty in this DLC.

Since there are such a large number of winding rivers in Oregon, it’s pretty common for you to encounter bridges that span over many them. In that regard, Oregon could just as equally be known as the “Beautiful Bridge State.”

Of course, all of Oregon’s greenery is fed by lots and lots of rain, and boy will you get caught in some pretty torrential downpours from time to time. But for me this only enhanced the experience further and made me feel all warm and cozy, safely tucked away within the cab of whatever big rig I happened to be driving. Indeed, I’d say that it rained in Oregon at least a quarter of the entire time that I played the DLC, so it’ll be interesting to see how the state contends with any future map the devs make of rain-soaked Washington State.

Oregon’s larger urban centers are also a treat to behold. Driving through many of the smaller settlements can be delightful because of their “old timer” architecture and feel. But driving into its major cities surprised me. I actually expected to roll into massive urban areas with lots of tall buildings and sprawl when I did, but what I experienced was quite the opposite.

Oregon’s cities places aren’t nearly as big as Los Angeles, Las Vegas, or even San Francisco. No, instead they seemed to me to be more akin to large towns than anything else. They were all quite impressive.

The American Truck Simulator: Oregon DLC is a striking departure from the browner, more earthy-shaded environs of the previous ATS DLC offerings. It gives you a great amount of insight into just how gorgeous Oregon is and how well the state blends its urban areas in so fluidly with its more “country-fied” ones. Any fan of road trips or just traveling, in general, should definitely consider picking this excellent expansion up.

SCORE: 85%

American Truck Simulator: Oregon features pretty great graphics that make its trucking gameplay truly shine. However, you want to have a pretty beefy gaming PC or gaming laptop in order to play it at a decent framerate. So, you may just want to invest in a decent gaming rig:

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