American Truck Simulator’s Kansas expansion arrives next week

American Truck Simulator rumbles ever-onward, and developer SCS Software has announced it’ll be making its next stop, this time in the state of Kansas – the destination of its newest paid expansion – next Thursday, 30th November. Plus, its substantial 1.49 update – which adds a dynamic night sky, the moon, HDR skyboxes, and more – is out now.

Kansas was confirmed to be the focus of American Truck Simulator ‘s next, post-Oklahoma expansion back in February, bringing the tally of explorable states in the game up to 14, joining the previously released California, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington, Utah, Idaho, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Texas, and Oklahoma.

American Truck Simulator’s rendition of Kansas – or the Sunflower State, if you will – promises to give potential visitors and their hefty transportation a tour of the area’s “native grasslands, streams, abundant blue skies, and green grassland vistas”. You can see some of that across copious screenshots in SCS’ launch date announcement post.

American Truck Simulator’s Kansas expansion trailer.

“Once considered to be the country’s agricultural heartland,” SCS explains of the game’s newest addition, “the Sunflower State has managed to attract many large businesses and develop in other industrial areas… [But] nature is certainly doing very well to keep up with technological progress, as the state parks and vast prairies offer unique views with a marvellous atmosphere that will leave every trucker passing by with something to remember.”

Kansas’ arrival continues American Truck Simulator’s left-to-right march across the US, with SCS having already confirmed it’ll be followed by the introduction of Nebraska and Arkansas in the game’s next two paid expansions.

In preparation for Kansas’ launch next week, SCS has just released American Truck Simulator’s 1.49 update, introducing, among other things, HDR skyboxes, dynamic twinkling stars at night, and new weather effects – including lightning during thunderstorms. Additionally, it reintroduces the moon, which vanished from American Truck Simulator’s skies somewhere along the way, in what sounds like a fairly significant undertaking.

American Truck Simulator: 1.49 update changelog video.

SCS says integrating the moon into its new night skies required “casting, rendering and calculating lunar light, proper phases, managing reflections in water bodies, dealing with wet roads, and addressing mirror effects, among other things.”

Additionally, 1.49 has added the PACCAR Technical Center to American Truck Simulator’s version of Washington, and introduced used truck dealers to the game. These mean eager truckers can purchase their own vehicles much earlier in the game, choosing from a range of “budget-friendly” options. The downside is that buyers will need to content with mileage and wear, dovetailing nicely with 1.49’s enhanced damage and repair system.

And that’s still not all! 1.49 also adds automatic headlights as an option, introduces two new oversized cargoes to American Truck Simulator’s Special Transport DLC, and implements key bind modifiers. And finally, it brings a mountain rework for the Utah expansion, intended to add scale and detail using new techniques SCS has developed in the four years since the state was first introduced.

So as a reminder, 1.49 is out now and the Kansas expansion arrives on Steam next Thursday, 30th November. Happy trucking!

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