Snowrunner, aka Spintires 3, aka Mudrunner 2

We have arrived in Lake Kovd, slowly scouting our surroundings, uncovering tasks and driving into cracking ice.

Tatarin is hard to pass up for this, just for its unparalelled mud and snow performance. Though it looks like chains will be needed from time to time, as well as a lighter scout to navigate thinner ice.

We’ve added more vehicles to the garage, since we are pretty flush with cash and we may as well experiment with other vehicles. More vehicles on the map gives me more options for completing missions as well, since my tendency has been to use what’s availalble, rather than lean too much on crutches. At this stage we are still limiting it to trucks we have seen on the map, or the pure DLC models.

The Lo4F and Yar87 join the crew, but it’s cold and lonely out here on the ice.

A Tuz 16 Acteon is found and rescued in the mud. We’ve heard this is a capable beast once upgraded, making a handy scout. She make it back to the garage on her own steam, with an assist from the Cat 745 to winch her the last 100 meters up some rocks.

We try her out on test run, knocking off a mission scouting point on the way to picking up some supplies from a downed chopper. Of course, we roll it on top of the hill, just out of range of any winching points. /facepalm.

Tatarin is nearby and comes to the rescue and we ‘get to the choppa’! Was forced into the rather hairy choice of backing down a steep slope onto icy rocks to get the goods, since the truck was not heavy and stable enough to leverage the crane anywhere else.

The trip back is uneventful, if slow. Went offroad for a shotcut and The Acteon get really bogged down in deep snow, despite the AMHS tyres. Like, slowed to fraction of inches of movement in 3’ of snow, with nothing but those damed small trees that are no help for winching.

Think I will try her on the JAT dual mud tyres.

There is going to be a lot of slow traversal through snow, methinks.

Parkour!

After that little diversion, the Lo4F continues with some scouting tasks, probing for paths across the map, searching for upgrades and admiring the surprising colour the low sun casts across the landscape. Eventually probing too far and succumbing to the thin ice. We have not quite figured out how to reliabably identify that stuff yet.

We try the Derry through the thin ice as a test (in a place with ample winching targets) as we stage some fuel on the map. The Derry is not immune. We are not amused.

She has little issue pulling the Lo4F free, however.

The Acteon, on fresh raised suspension and having ditched the balloon tyres for duallies , heads accross to repair a bridge and free passage further north. I do prefer her on the dual mud tyres. More stable and seems to handle the medium depth snow/mud almost as well.

Regrettably, we bring wooden planks to a metal beams show. Doh!

We bring in the veritable Fleetstar to haul beams from the port to the bridge, taking the ice route. The Fleetstar being selected as she is pretty much the lightest truck and less susceptible to cracking the thin ice.

Turns out the bridge is a trap though…there is just another one out further up the road. This one is not getting repaired. We have to go around. The Acteon was supposed to get these planks to a camp much further north, but the terrain is not going to make this easy.

We need more intel. At this stage we risk driving blind into the unknown, ever further from known supplies of fuel.

The Acteon inches forward, abandoned gun emplacements dotting the landscape on-route. What was this place defending against?

Eventually discretion becomes the better part of valour as we side-eye the fuel guage. At this stage we have maybe 50% of the map scouted. That needs to change. There is a lot ot uncover and no watchtowers.

There is a prototype exploration trailer that promises a solution to this, but it needs to be recovered from the western rail yard.

Look, we tried to get this trailer out with the Tatarin, we really did, but it was an exercise in frustation that just ended up doing damage to the Tatarin and getting the trailer wedged akwardly.

So the big guns were brought in.

The Tatarin did tow it back to the village though.

The trailer requires its fuel in order to function and a full tank gets six scans which essentially act as a mobile watchtower, revealing the map, upgrades and objectives. We need to pair it with something that has some self-sufficiency. The Loadstar is dusted off, hooked up and we head out to begin the recce work. The Loadstar has not seen use since the very beginning of Tamyr. I forgot how awesome it is. We make fast progress.

Great stuff, love all those shots as it takes me back without actually having to go back :) It can be a rewarding but often frustrating set of maps, and looks great.

I definitely should start a new Normal run as I’ve deprived myself of driving most of the vehicles - never driven the Loaf, Voron etc for example.

Out of curiosity, how much did you manage to play through? I have the year 1 pass, so should be covered through to Amur at this stage.

I’ve reached the Yukon, which is the next region to yours, twice. It’s an interesting region but they went the route of, ‘take this full 5-slot trailer of stuff right across the map; now do it five more times,’ which is a bit of a bear and really only doable by those with unlimited free time. It’s like the logging missions x10. I was well through it last time before the tyre bug hit me, and that sucked the last bit of good out of it. Next time I go back I might just move on to the next region, but we’ll see. I’d like to get to Amur as it’s supposed to be Kola x2 or x3 :)

We still think the Chevy Apache is about the coolest looking scout! The Loadstar is usy scouting the map and the Apache is picking up any upgrades uncovered. Fuel remains a potential issue. I have found another trailer store, but I suspect we will need to stage some additional tankers in various places on the map.

Meanwhile we recruit another new truck into the fold. The Zikz 5368, like the Tuz Acteon, is a smaller truck that can be fitted with a single slot bed and crane, which is surprisingly useful on Kola, since so far there has been quite a few single slot cargo delivery tasks. Also might put a tank on this as a mobile refueler.

Though to be fair, it has its (upside)downsides…

Tatarin ticking off a few local tasks - the ones involving hitting successive points, usually cross-country. She’s the go-to for these, though I have one coming up that seems to cross a lot of thin ice, so I’ll be taking the Apache on that one.

Meanwhile the Loadstar makes its way back across the northern portion of the map, scanning as we go. We glimpse areas we are going to have to scout in more detail later with a more appropriate vehicle.

But we still take the odd detour to collect upgrades if we can, even if it means getting stuck at the bottom of an icy slope. Thank goodness for tactical trees…

We do spot the F750 in our travels, but taking one look at the surrounding terrain and all that thin ice, we decide to brute force the rescue, taking the opportunity to tow a strategic fuel trailer out to the northwest portion of the map.

The Cat does make absolute mincemeat of thin ice, dragging her clear and back to northern camp. She’s seen better days, but we soon have her back to the garage for a lick of fresh paint and some serious upgrades!

This is the way!

Cat was definitely the MVP of this region for me; let me know if you find other good solutions!

Yeah, Cat’s a beast, suits my playstyle, which generally revolves around not really caring how long something takes. I kinda hate the timed missions!

At this stage I am just amazed I have not pulled out any heavy hitters yet - Tayga, Voron, Step. They are coming though. There’s logs got to be logged.

Predictable. Tried my luck on the thin part of the ice, testing if speed will help you accross before it cracks. Maybe should not have tried that with a front heavy cabover!

But the Derry was 100m away in what has become something of an ad-hoc staging area.

Meanwhile. more rusty guns

And a beastmode Tatarin on the way to Imandra.

Speaking of Imandra, 30 minutes of scouting and we are less than amused. Deep snow, mud, ice, downed bridges and no sign of the garage or even a trailer yard. Managed to find the fuel trailer at the heliport and another useful looking truck, but further scouting is eating into fuel reserves quickly through challenging terrain. Very much may shelve this until I finish what I can in Lake Kovd.

Good idea, there’s a fair bit of fuel in Imandra, but it needs to be found and staged at key points etc.

Uh-oh :P You should know that there are no long logs in Imandra, and not quite enough medium logs (you might be one load short) so maybe consider the old loose logs trick.

Imandra is a tough map for sure.

I think this is a trap. The route to the power line to deliver beams. Loaded up the Bandit and put chains on it to climb the frozen creek ‘shortcut’. Just getting there proved hazardous to the Bandit.

And we still think this is a trap, even with the destination mere meters away.

And…in a surprise to nobody, including ouselves, the shortcut was a trap. There is some gnarly intersecting slopes, divots and boulders right at the top of the climb, with no way to safely get the truck pointed in the right direction to prevent the inevitable.

It’s even worse than it looks. Very uneven ground, deep snow coverage, trees everywhere and the Yar does not have the oomph to flip the Bandit. I was seriously thinking I was going to have to work out a way to get a heavy with a crane in there. Thankfully the trusty Tatarin, retrofit with a heavy winch, was able to get in there and pull it down the hill to flat ground.

That one job cost us a whole lot of time.

Ah the Fleetstar. Not seen a lot of use in Tamyr - used her only once right at the end, to flip a Voron 100m from the garage.

But here we are, ice-road trucking. Smaller, lighter and nimbler than my other optons, I can throw some chains on her for the ice-crawling required in the north east, while not worrying about her falling through the ice on the way there. In comparison to the last mission, easy peasy.

Two old hunks of iron, one has some life left in her yet!