Recently, I ran our review of American Truck Simulator: New Mexico, the first paid DLC for my all-time favourite driving game, and which adds the Union’s 47th state into the game, alongside the existing California, Arizona and Nevada. Though I consider it absolutely essential, in that it really makes ATS feel like a signficant part of a country, as opposed to simply that nation’s greatest hits, I found it left me feeling a little bleaker than the other states. I admired the scenery but found the settlements oppressively characterless: this was not a place I wanted to be, as much as I might have enjoyed driving through it at speed.
But I was left with a creeping sense that I hadn’t really seen the best of the place, and some of the comments on the review bore that out. Specific places were named, highlights in the mingled desert, forest and mountain landscape, and, perhaps, until I’d seen them, I could not claim to have had an accurate impression of ‘the land of enchantment.’ So here’s what I did. Each day this week, I visited one famous or otherwise revered location in New Mexico, documented it and then reconsidered how I felt about the state as a whole afterwards.