Sience i first started my ETS2 gaming adventure i was pretty fast bored by the vanilla version. Not the game itself, but the map was repetitive and the "jobs" were stupid. The economy part of the game also. Who is gonna pay you 100.000 euro to deliver a cargo from place x to place y? Nobody.
Then i discovered the mods. Without this level of moding SCS ETS2 it was dead in a year.
Now, sience the release of the first map there is a constant debate about which map is the best.
Few notes before we get to the subject.
FIRST, i dont see the point of a map not located in Europe or around Europe. Ok, you want to play your country map, install it as a standalone map and play it. But the stupidiest thing is to connect Europe with Brasil or Canada, Indonezia or China. The cargo between Europe and Asia, America or whatever continent is by cargo ship, not by truck.
SECOND, about wrong scaled maps. Best example YKS Turkey. They maded a beautiful useless map. Yeah, it's at real scale or smaler, but for sure bigger than ETS2 scale of things (1:19) and for this reason unplayable with vanilla. As a standalone map, maybe, but i for sure i dont want to limit my game to a country or not even a country, e few cities from a country. If vanilla it's boring, how can a map with 30 cities can be fun? It's not. For me standalone maps are not important.
About real subject?
I've tested the important maps from the virtual enviroment and this are my conclusions. Let's start:
1.PROMODS (now 2.25)
Maybe the most downloaded map and this due to quality and diversity. They didnt use much the copy/paste option in their work and some places are nice. They did intensive work on custom models and textures but everything comes with a price. The map it's FPS killler and some areas are almost unplayable, like Spain, for example.
Second, using this map you can't use complex mods because they gonna generate conflicts. So, you got to look for a mod who is "Promods compatible". And the map itself it's not very teritory-extensive, they just added to vanilla more cities or highways, some roads in Island and Scandinavia. Playing this map alone its gonna get boring very fast just like vanilla, mostly because they are working in the same vanilla teritories and to make it more fun you got to connect Promods with other maps, a tricky thing to do.
The newest releases are just updates, they didnt expand nothing. The spaces from Spain, Portugal, Italy (now as DLC), the Southern East Europe (Romania, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey and so on) are available but are still empty.
The creators of this map are acting like everybody have to adjust their personal work/mods to the "high" standards of Promods map. They are bashing competition in their forum reducing other peoples work to garbage status. Tired of this self-importance i just deleted this map from my computer and i've realized that i didnt loose nothing. The good thing is i didnt pay money to download it (they charge "premium" downloads with, ha, ha , donations).
...or TruckSim Map. Last version 6.6.1 was just an update for 1.28 version of the game. The map it's working also in vanilla teritories but in early releases they did some work in Spain, Portugal, Italy and North Africa. A good thing but that was it. The East side of the map stops just like vanilla. The creators are german speakers, so if you want to share ideeas on their forum, you must know german. The map it's like an orphan child, nobody its interested to update it to 1.30 atleast, not talking about some developement work, no hopes for that. Too bad, but in this stage the map is dead.
3. Ex-Soviet Maps
This includes many maps, starting with the best one: RusMap.
It's a well made map, not very strong in beauty departament, but it creates the "russian"feeling. The map have quick updates, not so much expansion but the work it's in progress. It works with TSM or Promods, they are providing road connections for this maps. The map it's a "must have" but as an addon to other map or vanilla.
The RK Steppe Map, a young project, but pretty small for now.
Sothern Region Map, also an adoon to RusMap but it has big flaws and bugs and for now not playable in 1.30. To bad, i've liked previous versions.
Russian Open Spaces and Promzona, well...big and wide. Nothing really special, i think the scale it's wrong, seems to big for normal ETS scale. And the name tells you all: open spaces. Play it, uninstalled, deleted.
4. MHAPro Map
I didnt give it so much attention because it's small and it's not free. From creators site:
"Map MOD is a free version and it is not the same as Support version, better to tell, it is far from that version."
In other words, no money, no fun. So, ignore...ignore...ignore. I wonder if there is enough stupid people to pay for a moded map?
Project Balkans was one, not updated now, and the creator focused his work to "please" Promods creators, so i'm not interested in this map.
Scandinavian Addon also plays in Promods yard, maybe they gonna give him some attention.
.....and so on.
And the winner is:
Mario Map v12.5 [1.30.x]
Let me tell you about this map. You will not gonna find to much information about it, it's like a secret map. Why?
Because some people told me on different occasions about this map just one thing: it's a Stolen Map. They took parts of Promods, Egypt, YKS, TSM or other non european maps and they created Mario. It's like Frankenstein, maded out of pieces.
I told them: I dont give a shit about that. I though a map it's for expansion and improvement of the game, not about "free crappy version map"and "support version of the map". You want to make money, do something, create a game, open a strip club or something.
Editing a SCS game with SCS tools it's not a bussines, it's Photoshoping the game.
The full version has many parts and this is why i didnt like it at first sight. It has North and South America, some asian maps and a load of ferry connections and airoport connections (I mean ALOT of them). In this state it's imposible to play that map because the GPS it's walking your route through this virtual teleports and it's not fun. As it is, The Mario Map it's useless.
Yes, but it has parts, so let me tell you my favorite setup.
I have only parts 1-8 installed.
This means Europe vanilla game + Island, big Soviet territory (realy big), Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, Cyprus and north Africa, even Arabian parts, Jerusalem or Damascus. For the complete map see the video, also see the way the map looks.
For my taste, i removed tones of unnecesary ferry and airport connections keeping the strictly necessary ones. I've added some new asphalt textures and files from my mods and i have the best gaming experience possible. To deliver a cargo from Lisbon to Moskow....great. And most important, this map supports HEAVY CARGO!
Anyway, it's simple for installation, no need for addon maps and it's fast, no FPS killer. There is NO other map of this size available. I dont know who create it, i dont know if is from stolen parts, but is free, with no aristocrat farts by Promods or german-only support from TSM.
The credits for this map are owned by his creators, i have no interest in this.
The work of the original creators it's important, but if you restrain my game with your useless demands for adulation, F you.
If you want to try it, go ahead, full size (not recomended) or 1-8 size for Extended Europe only.
If you need my Europe Extended Version of it, write in comments.