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Old 03-07-2007, 02:01 AM   #1
zapionics<alt>
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Gold: S.T.A.L.K.E.R.

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About S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl
In 1986, the world's most horrific nuclear disaster took place in Chernobyl. After subsequent unexplained explosions in 2006, a military exclusion zone is set up preventing access to the area. Stories of huge anomalous energy disturbances and sightings of strange creatures within the Zone are widespread. Players assume the role of a S.T.A.L.K.E.R., a mercenary paid by scientists and other undisclosed groups, who is trying to regain his memory. Players will experience a unique “Survival-Shooter” game that combines action, stealth, survival and Role-Playing Game (RPG) elements to create an incomparable experience in the Zone. Developed by GSC Game World, S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl delivers an immersive storyline that seamlessly blends with a living, breathing, non-linear open-world environment featuring accurately modelled real-word buildings and locations from around the devastated Chernobyl power plant.

More information about S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl can be found at
S.T.A.L.K.E.R - Shadow of Chernobyl: Official PC video game site
GAME FAQ

Some useful info for noob stalkers.
Will update from time to time.

Q. Is the game an FPS or an RPG?
Its primarily a survival shooter crossed with classic role playing game elements such as reputation system, trading and resource management and additionally you also have access to artifacts which have special properties that affect the player's characteristics.
You should know, however, that there is currently a belief in the forum membership that the RPG aspect is broken in the game. We think the game is a fantastic FPS but if you are looking for a good RPG experience then this game may not be your cup of tea. Check the thread for info.

Q. My game takes forever to install, is that right?
Thats right, up to 10 minutes reported by some.

Q. Should I install the patch?
YES and before you start playing because saves are not compatible with previous versions.

Q. What difficulty should I play on?
The STALKER level is best for new players. This offers very good challenge without making enemies into frustrating supermen.

Q. What should I do first?
When you first start playing you have a PDA screen and an inventory screen as described by the trader. You should investigate these and get to know them. Make sure they are bound to keys that are convenient for you. Then go investigating the camp.

Q. What do all the freakin noises in the game mean?
You have a geiger-counter like device which clicks faster as radiaton level increases. If the radiation is very strong it will become hard to see as your vision will pixelate and become washed out.
You have another detector which beeps when there is an anomaly nearby and the beeps will increase the closer you get to one.
A single beep (more like a blip) means that another PDA has come into range, (could be enemy, friendly or neutral).

Q. What am I supposed to be doing?
Go into your PDA. This will show you your current tasks, as well as a whole bunch of other useful information.

Q. Packs of mutant dogs/pigs are tearing me to shreds.
Firing into the pack will scare the less hungry ones off, and then you can usually finish off the remainder. If you continue to be attacked but cant see from where, turn around and look behind you. (Pack animals will tend to flank you.) Headshots are more effective.

Q. I cant see anything,its too dark.
You have a flashlight you can bind to a handy key or most suits of armour have nightvision equipped. (You can also speed up time by pressing the * key on your numeric key pad, and then when its daylight you can put time back to normal with the / key - but I dont recommend this method).

Q. Bandages or Medkits?
Use bandages for smaller wounds and medkits for larger ones. If you run out of medkits you can use several bandages to bring your health back up.
You can bind these to keys so you dont have to go into the inventory screen. Beware that the inventory screen does not pause the game.

Q. What's the whirly wind and exploding dust all about?
These are types of "Anomalies" and are caused by excessive radiation and mutation of the surrounding area. There are many types from pools of static electrical fields to high pressure zones. These manifest very violent physical properties and if you accidentally wander into one you can be killed.

Q. What are these floating objects/artifacts good for?
These "Artifacts" are left behind when anomalies fade away. Artifacts can be traded or sold. They also have some useful properties associated with them. If you go into the inventory screen and then attach them to your belt those properties will affect you. Some affects are desirable and some are not. Select an artifact in your inventory screen to read about its properties.

Q. What are these bolts for?
Throw bolts ahead of your path to detect anomalies. Usually bolts will trigger them and then you can carefully move around them. Some anomalies fire in a certain pattern and you can use the bolts to change the pattern.
You can also throw bolts to distract enemies, as they will go investigate.

Q. I cant move, I'm stuck! Whats happening?
You're over your weight limit. Go into your inventory screen and it will show you a weight limit of (usually 50). Going over this means you are carrying too much and can no longer sprint. Going over 60 means you can no longer move at all. Drop stuff you dont need by right clicking it and choosing "drop".

Q. What is all this money for?
Use it to bribe military blockades, or buy information at the 100 Rads bar. You can also purchase some useful items from the traders.

Q. How do I get some money?
Get a job you bum! The traders have plenty of paying jobs and there are other signifant NPC's who will offer you a job. Additionally you can trade artifacts with the traders or with the NPC's.

Q. Help I'm getting pwned in the firefights!
Use artifacts to increase your health regeneration and to reduce bleeding and improve bullet protection. Find better armour. (Note that you actually have to equip armour for it to work.) Use cover and use your lean keys. Aim down the guns sight for better accuracy.

Q. How do I defeat this annoying psi attack?
The annoying psi mutant really gets in your face, so just return the favour and knife him in his face.

Q. How do I mount scopes on rifles?
You can right click items in your inventory to see a description about them. This will tell you which rifles a scope can mount to. You can mount/unmount scopes and grenade launchers to the currently active weapon.

Q. Enemies keep re-spawning! Is that right?
In some parts of the game enemies do respawn constantly. Typically in the first part of the game where there are a lot of bandits. This means that you can complete some missions multiple times, if you like.

Q. Is there a quick save and load?
Yes! use F6 and F7 to save and load. This is undocumented and may cause issues but none have been found yet. The alternative is to escape out to the menu and choose save.

Q. The door to the trader is stuck, I cant open it!
This is a bug. Try pushing the door open from its edge if there is a slight gap. If not try throwing a grenade near it to blow it open. If this fails go back and load a previous save point.

Q. The bartender wont talk to me anymore!
Another bug; unfortunately you're hosed. All you can do is reload a previous save.

Q. My gun keeps getting jammed, whats up with that?
As guns get damaged and worn they become less reliable. There is a health bar showing the "health" of your weapon which you can view in the inventory screen. Swap damaged guns out for better ones you find on dead NPC's.

Q. Performance is terrible, what can I do?
The game is very demanding even on high end systems. You have some options you can tweak in the video settings. The biggest impact is dynamic lighting. Turn this off to improve performance a lot but note that you will lose some of the nice eye candy and effects. Other things that have a big impact are reducing the vision distance, texture detail and shadow quality. Turn grass shadows off.
Also running on Vista has some problems, Xp seems to run it better.

Q. Can I see the fps in game?
Yes, use "rs_stats 1" and "rs_stats 0" in the console.

Q. What are these purple markers on my PDA map?
The little circles represent stashes, places where NPC's have stashed supplies.
After you examine a dead NPC who had a stash then the location of his stash will be marked on your map. You can then go and find the stash and the goodies in it.

Q. Where the heck is this family rifle anyway?
Ok, you've looked everywere around that marker on the map and you cant find the family rifle, its just not there, right? Wrong! The marker shows you exactly where it is on the map, you just have to think logically... oh, and a shotgun is called a rifle by some Russians...

Q. Where are the saved games kept?
In a strange place; assuming C: is your installation drive, then:
C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\STALKER-HOC\savedgames
(just replace C: with your drive letter)
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Old 03-07-2007, 08:20 AM   #2
TQ
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Man...another PC game to get. I still have at least four I haven't touched yet.
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Old 03-08-2007, 07:34 AM   #3
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Screenshots look very impressive... I wonder what kind of rig I will need to run this one.
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Old 03-08-2007, 09:14 AM   #4
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Screenshots look very impressive... I wonder what kind of rig I will need to run this one.
Yea I hope my rig will play it all right, I hope we catch a lot of fish this year, I need to upgrade!!!!!!!
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Old 03-09-2007, 08:28 AM   #5
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At least the both of us waited with our G80 anxiety and decided to wait. But AMD has delayed their lineup again with 1 month so the waiting continues.

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Originally Posted by fvbounty View Post
Yea I hope my rig will play it all right, I hope we catch a lot of fish this year, I need to upgrade!!!!!!!
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Old 03-09-2007, 12:08 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by SubZero View Post
At least the both of us waited with our G80 anxiety and decided to wait. But AMD has delayed their lineup again with 1 month so the waiting continues.
The way ATI is going lately it might be out after my season this fall!!!!
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Old 03-18-2007, 04:03 AM   #7
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Check out the CPU and disk space requirements;

Minimum Reqs:

Microsoft® Windows® XP (Service Pack 2)/Microsoft® Windows® 2000 SP4
  • Intel Pentium 4 2 Ghz/AMD XP 2200+
  • 512 MB RAM
  • 10 GB available hard drive space
  • 128 MB DirectX® 9c compatible card/ nVIDIA® GeForce™ 5700/ATI Radeon® 9600
  • DirectX® 9 compatible sound card
  • LAN/ Internet connection with Cable/DSL speeds for multiplayer
  • Keyboard, Mouse.
Recommended Reqs:
  • Intel Core 2 Duo E6400/AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+
  • 1 GB RAM or better
  • 256 MB DirectX® 9c compatible card/ nVIDIA® GeForce™ 7900/ ATI Radeon® X1850
It should be noted that at the start of the game development the initially targeted system requirements were much lower. As a result the game can be played on lower-end systems (the game ships with two renders - DirectX 8 and DirectX 9 one).

BTW, will u be a force for good in the Zone or a force for Evil? (And I dont mean ABXZone... heh)
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Old 03-18-2007, 09:49 PM   #8
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Smile

it comes out this week. fry's will have it for 33 bucks.
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Old 03-19-2007, 01:30 AM   #9
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WoW !!! DX8.



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Old 03-19-2007, 01:43 AM   #10
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I was just looking at the official site. Looks kind of HalfLife 2 ish.



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Old 03-19-2007, 03:46 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by traveler View Post
I was just looking at the official site. Looks kind of HalfLife 2 ish.
Yeah, this is what they say about it:

Quote:
Engine

X-ray Engine is a powerful cutting-edge DirectX 9 engine, unique and yet unparalleled in many respects.

Render
  • DX9 renderer with one of the best in the world implementations of Defferred Shading, allowing us to draw a vast amount of dynamic light sources with correct materials and light ‘feedback’, without limiting ourselves to Defferred Lighting, but truly using the deferred Shading.
  • Ultra realistic game graphics with desalination of up to 1 000 000 polygons on screen.
  • Vast open space territories up to 4 sq km and detailed indoor environments.
  • Dynamic lighting and soft shadows, destructible light sources.
  • Parallax/normal mapping.
  • True per-pixel dynamic lighting.
  • Floating point HDR, Shader Model 3.0
  • Real-time dynamic day-night cycle.
  • Dynamic outdoor lighting (ambient occlusion, IBL, dynamic Sun and Sun-shadows).
  • Dynamic weather effects as rain, wind, fog, etc.
  • Wide screens support.
  • A lot of postprocess and post render effects.
  • Powerful FX system.
AI

A-Life
  • Innovative life simulation system controlling all the in-game characters.
  • Over 1000 characters populating the Zone.
  • For the first time ever the player is immersed into a living non-scripted world, where A-Life events may develop without getting linked to the player’s actions.
  • Full life cycle of A-life-driven NPCs – task accomplishment, combats, taking rest, food, sleeping.
  • Full life cycle of A-life-driven monsters – hunting, attacks on stalkers and other monsters, taking rest, food, sleeping.
  • Global A-life level - war of groupings, monster migrations.
  • A-life belongs to the gameplay – unlimited number of random quests – rescuing stalkers, destroying stalker renegades, protection of camps, assaults on camps, eliminating animal lairs, search of hidden stashes and treasures and much more.
  • NPCs traversing the entire Zone, crossing to other levels, entering and leaving the player’s visibility zone.
NPC AI
  • Non-scripted AI. Characters traverse game objectives freely – they patrol, guard key spots, oversee the territory and take rest.
  • Realistic sight and hearing of NPCs, which allows using several ways to accomplish the game.
  • Variety of tactics to complete game scenes – rush, stealth, sniper fire and their combinations. Adequate NPCs’ reaction to the player’s actions.
  • NPCs use planning to make decisions (Goal-Oriented Action Planning), which allowed us to create multitude of behaviors and make them considerably more varied (combat, for instance).
  • Combat – assault actions, defensive actions, enemy search, escaping from fire, movements among covers, reaction to grenade, finishing the injured enemies and much more.
Physics
  • Powerful physics engine supports hundreds of physics objects on level
  • Ragdoll
  • Destructible objects, bullet ballistics, skeleton animation, etc.
  • Physics as base for game play features like monster levitation, real bullets and grenades ballistics, blast wave, realistic ammo piercing characteristics for various materials and surfaces.
Sound
  • Environment effects
  • 5.1 Sound support
MP
  • Playing over LAN and Internet
  • Up to 32 players
  • Three game modes – Death Match, Team Death Match, Artefact hunt
  • Real physic – ragdoll, real bullet ballistics.
Unique features – day and night cycling with influence on game tactics, ranking systems, upgrades for weapons, different ammo types for deferent weapons, anomalies, artifacts.

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Old 03-20-2007, 12:15 AM   #12
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first review of S.T.A.L.K.E.R is in from GameSpot...they give it a nice score/review...the game sounds really nice and unique with its open endedness and FPS/role playing elements...I can't wait to pick this up on Wednesday...

S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl for PC Review - PC S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl Review

"This first-person survival game is at times amazing and engrossing and on par with such classics as Deus Ex and System Shock"

"Though already dated by a few years, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. still looks good, and its visuals are on par with Half-Life 2"

"The lighting and particle effects are particularly well done. For instance, battles can occur in raging storms, with flashes of lightning briefly illuminating the battlefield. The game's flashlight system also deserves a heaping of praise. The flashlight in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. cuts through the darkness with a realism that's beautiful to behold"

"S.T.A.L.K.E.R.'s main storyline will take maybe 10 hours to get through if you just pursue it, but there are also plenty of side quests that can consume hours, as well as sheer hours spent on exploration"
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Old 03-20-2007, 12:52 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by polonyc2 View Post
first review of S.T.A.L.K.E.R is in from GameSpot...they give it a nice score/review...the game sounds really nice and unique with its open endedness and FPS/role playing elements...I can't wait to pick this up on Wednesday...

S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl for PC Review - PC S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl Review

"This first-person survival game is at times amazing and engrossing and on par with such classics as Deus Ex and System Shock"

"Though already dated by a few years, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. still looks good, and its visuals are on par with Half-Life 2"

"The lighting and particle effects are particularly well done. For instance, battles can occur in raging storms, with flashes of lightning briefly illuminating the battlefield. The game's flashlight system also deserves a heaping of praise. The flashlight in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. cuts through the darkness with a realism that's beautiful to behold"

"S.T.A.L.K.E.R.'s main storyline will take maybe 10 hours to get through if you just pursue it, but there are also plenty of side quests that can consume hours, as well as sheer hours spent on exploration"

Thanks for the quotes polonyc2.

Nice!



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Old 03-20-2007, 01:30 AM   #14
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Its not a good review.

It doesnt seem too enthusiastic either, which is a dissapointment. Sure, they did point out a couple of good things about the game, but they also pointed out a few issues. If a game knocks your socks off, you dont worry about the minor issues much and that will shine through in a review. Sometimes they get things wrong at Gamespot.

I think they did seem upbeat about the atmosphere of the game and the effects, which is good to hear. Doesnt sound like the AI is too consistent and I notice they didnt rate the game as difficult to play. Oh well, like graphics, combat AI is not everything.

If the story, plot and atmosphere can grab us then it could be a great game still. We'll all know soon enough.
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Old 03-20-2007, 07:34 AM   #15
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Quote:
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Its not a good review.

It doesnt seem too enthusiastic either, which is a dissapointment. Sure, they did point out a couple of good things about the game, but they also pointed out a few issues. If a game knocks your socks off, you dont worry about the minor issues much and that will shine through in a review. Sometimes they get things wrong at Gamespot.

I think they did seem upbeat about the atmosphere of the game and the effects, which is good to hear. Doesnt sound like the AI is too consistent and I notice they didnt rate the game as difficult to play. Oh well, like graphics, combat AI is not everything.

If the story, plot and atmosphere can grab us then it could be a great game still. We'll all know soon enough.
of course that was a good review...yes they pointed out a few flaws but overall they gave the game an overall very good review...the major flaws have to with with Vista and the side quests feature...other then that the review is very positive
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