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    S.T.A.L.K.E.R. : Shadow of Chernobyl

    Itchacy
    Itchacy
    Gold member
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    masculin
    Numarul mesajelor : 472
    Varsta : 29
    Localizare : A lost city a.k.a. Bucuresti
    Joburi/Distractii : Anime , Manga , PC stuff , Gaming etc.
    Stare de spirit : Disturbed
    Data de inscriere : 13/05/2008

    S.T.A.L.K.E.R. : Shadow of Chernobyl Empty S.T.A.L.K.E.R. : Shadow of Chernobyl

    Mesaj  Itchacy la data de Lun Mai 26 2008, 23:52

    S.T.A.L.K.E.R. : Shadow of Chernobyl 256px-Shadow_of_Chernobyl_cover


    S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, previously known as S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Oblivion Lost, is a first-person shooter computer game by Ukrainian developer GSC Game World, published in 2007.

    It features an alternate reality theme, where a second nuclear disaster occurs at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in the near future and causes strange changes in the area around it. The game has a non-linear storyline and features gameplay elements such as trading and two-way communication with NPCs. The game includes elements of role-playing and business simulation games.

    The background idea and some terminology of the game ("The Zone", "Stalker") is borrowed from the popular science fiction book Roadside Picnic by Boris and Arkady Strugatsky and the 1979 film Stalker by Andrei Tarkovsky, loosely based on the book. Some of the music in the game such as that heard on the radio or sometimes performed by stalkers with guitars was recorded by the Ukrainian metal band FireLake.

    In S.T.A.L.K.E.R., the player assumes the identity of an amnesiac "Stalker", an illegal explorer/artifact scavenger in "The Zone", named 'The Marked One'. "The Zone" is the location of an alternate reality version of the Chernobyl Power Plant after its second (fictitious) explosion, which contaminated the surrounding area with radiation and caused strange otherworldly changes in local fauna, flora and even the laws of physics. "Stalker" in its original (film) context roughly meant "explorer" or "guide", as the stalker's goal was to bring (guide) people into the Zone. On July 11th, 2007, GSC Game World announced a prequel S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky which would be released on 29th of August in 2008.

    GSC Game World has been considering porting the game to console platforms. It is unknown what platforms the game would be ported to, and it is also unknown which S.T.A.L.K.E.R. would get ported, since S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky is now in development . At the end of November 2007, it was reported by GamesIndustry.biz that GSC Game World had been certified with Xbox 360 development status.

    Gameplay

    S.T.A.L.K.E.R. (Scavengers, Trespassers, Adventurers, Loners, Killers, Explorers, and Robbers) is a non-linear, sandbox-style game. Players can explore the game world, or complete various assignments given by certain NPCs. Players take the role of "The Marked One", a Stalker with amnesia who is attempting to regain his memories. The Zone presents various dangers.

    Gameplay is an RPG/FPS hybrid, though the player does not gain increased powers as in a standard computer RPG. Character advancement is achieved through acquiring and strategically using new equipment and artifacts, rather than enhancing attributes and skills. The role-playing part focuses more on traditional RPG elements, such as storyline and character interaction. However, the game does not allow for extensive variety in regards to conversations. Unlike RPGs such as Fallout, conversation branches are extremely limited and do not significantly influence the course of the game, save accepting or declining missions.

    Playing area

    The Zone comprises an area of 30 square kilometers, consisting of wilderness, human settlements, and several heavily-guarded military bases. However, the game world is not a true contiguous world, but rather 18 different maps separated by loading screens. Transfer from one area of the Zone to another can only be accomplished at certain specific passageways; a wire fence border blocks players from attempting to cross the map in any other area. The Zone is a fictionalized version of the real-life Zone of alienation, specifically a slice of it extending south from Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant; geographical changes for artistic license include moving the city of Prypiat into this area (it is actually to the north-west of the power station), although the city itself is directly modelled on its real-life counterpart, albeit smaller in size.

    The game does not feature controllable vehicles (although vehicles are programmed in the game code, they are not available without the use of a third party modification [1], [2]), and thus players are required to go from place to place on foot. A sprint option using a limited stamina bar can be used to temporarily increase the player's rate of movement, though this is reduced by the weight of objects the player is carrying, and weapons cannot be fired while sprinting. It is possible to sprint non-stop by using artifacts and keeping below a certain weight limit.

    Mutants

    The local wildlife and plant life were severely altered by the years of radiation, and have developed deadly instincts and natural defenses to survive the hostile environment. Another factor is large numbers of mutant lifeforms left behind from the unlucky workers and soldiers who were caught in the second blast. Mutated encounters in the earlier game areas are limited to altered domestic animals, but mutated humans and humanoids appear in later sections of the game. Certain mutants only appear in very specific areas. Mutants exhibit some realistic behaviors as part of their AI, including territorial defense, fleeing when injured, feeding on and dragging their prey, attacking and retreating in packs, limping when injured, and the chance of them attacking is somewhat based on their hunger as well. However, many of these creatures were removed from the game before release, but like vehicles, they can be added back in with modifications.

    Factions

    Many human NPCs in the game belong to a Faction, designating their group loyalties and attitude toward the player. The Faction an NPC belongs to affects how they interact with other NPCs as well as the player. NPCs without a Faction are considered Loners; they are generally neutral to all other characters, and the player can even interact with and accept missions from some of them. Loners are actually a Faction of sorts, despite operating independently. This implies that news travels fast among Loners and the reputation of any particular group or person is judged accordingly.

    The most omnipresent Faction in the Zone are the Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, known to Stalkers as the Military, who are attempting to control and police the Zone to separate it from the outside world. The Military are hostile to all Stalkers (whom they regard as trespassers), and use ground troops, helicopter air support, and elite Spetsnaz special forces to control the Zone's inhabitants.

    The two most important Stalker Factions are Duty and Freedom, as they are the only Factions that the player can befriend (friendship with a Faction allows various benefits such as access to their facilities and supplies). The player may join one of the two factions only if he never works for the opposite one (to join a faction the player must work hard for just one faction). Also the player may find uniforms used by the factions in various places in the game. Duty and Freedom are philosophically opposed to each other. Duty sees it as their responsibility to protect the world from the expanding Zone, while Freedom members fight for free access to the Zone and believe that information about the Zone must not be hidden from humanity. They challenge the state's monopoly over the Zone's secrets and wonders. These two Stalker groups are at war; members attack each other on sight, and assisting one group can cause the player to become the enemy of the other group.

    There are also a few other Factions, such as scavenging Bandits and professional killer-for-hire Mercenaries, AKA Mercs. These factions are always hostile toward the player, and generally serve as enemies for the player to overcome. Finally, there is the mysterious and elite Monolith Faction, who control the center of the Zone, including the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. The later stages of the game revolve around a full-scale conflict between Monolith and all other Stalker Factions, in which the Marked One can gain the trust of more than one neutral faction by helping them fight Monolith.

    At some brief moments in the game the player may encounter Zombified Stalkers. These are Stalkers whose minds have been destroyed by the Monolith Faction's Brain Scorcher, and, like zombies, act with no thought or rationality. In one part of the game there is also an Ecologist Faction, a team of scientists working in the Zone, who are neutral to the player unless allied with the Freedom Faction, and are the only faction neutral to the Military.

    Anomalies, artifacts and radiation

    The Zone is littered with anomalies, small areas of altered physics. There are several different variations, each one having a unique impact upon those who cross its path. They can be potentially deadly to the player and other NPCs, delivering electric shocks, or pulling them into the air and crushing them. Most anomalies produce visible air or light distortions and cause the player's Geiger counter to sound a warning click; their extent can be determined by throwing bolts (of which the player carries an infinite supply) to trigger them.

    Anomalies produce Artifacts, the valuable scientific curiosities that make the Zone worth exploring monetarily. As well as being traded with friendly NPCs for money, a number of Artifacts can be worn on the player's belt, where they will give certain benefits and detriments (for example, increasing the player's resistance to gunfire while also contaminating him with small amounts of radiation). Artifacts are found scattered throughout the Zone, often near clusters of anomalies.

    Radiation caused by the nuclear incidents at Chernobyl occur in specific invisible patches throughout the game world. Although most areas in the game have no radiation, areas near abandoned construction equipment that was used in the post-accident clean-up, certain military wrecked vehicles, and a variety of other locations create small to large fields of radiation that the player cannot pass without protection or they will incur damage. The player is equipped with a Geiger counter that begins to click in any location where radiation occurs, and its rate of clicking increases in proportion to the level of radiation in the area (i.e. as the player gets closer).

    It's possible for the player to receive radiation poisoning. During this time, a radiation icon appears on the screen and fades through from green to yellow to red, signifying the strength of the poisoning, which grows the longer the player remains present in the affected areas. The stronger the poisoning, the faster the player’s health decreases. Unless the player dies from damage caused by radiation poisoning, there are no permanent effects from contracting it other than health loss, and bandages, food, or medkits can restore this. Certain types of armor in the game can shield against radiation and help the player avoid contracting radiation poisoning. Players that have been poisoned by radiation can reduce their exposure a small amount by drinking vodka, or a large amount by injecting antiradiation drugs. However, these do not cure any damage the player may have received. Equipping certain artifacts that help remove radiation within the player's body also can help deal with the condition.

    Technical features

    X-ray graphics engine

    The X-ray Engine is a DirectX 8.1/9 Shader Model 3.0 graphics engine. Up to a million polygons can be on-screen at any one time. The engine features HDR rendering, parallax and normal mapping, soft shadows, motion blur, widescreen support, weather effects and day/night cycles. As with other engines that utilise deferred shading, the X-ray Engine does not support anti-aliasing with dynamic lighting enabled. However, a "fake" form of anti-aliasing can be enabled with the static lighting option; this format utilizes a technique to blur the image to give the false impression of anti-aliasing. The game takes place in a thirty square kilometer area, and both the outside and inside of this area are rendered to the same amount of detail. Some textures in the game were simply photographs of the walls in the developers' studio.

    AI

    The X-ray engine uses GSC Gameworld's proprietary ALife artificial intelligence engine. ALife supports more than one thousand characters inhabiting the Zone. These characters are non-scripted, meaning that AI life can be developed even when not in contact with the player.

    The NPCs have a full life cycle (task accomplishment, combat, rest, feeding and sleep) and the same applies to the many monsters living in the Zone (hunting, attacking Stalkers and other monsters, resting, eating, sleeping). These monsters will migrate in large groups. The non-scripted nature of the characters means that there are an unlimited number of random quests. For instance, rescuing Stalkers from danger, destroying Stalker renegades, protecting or attacking Stalker camps or searching for treasure. The AI characters travel around the entire zone as they see fit.

    Numerous tactics can be employed to complete the game, such as rushing or using stealth and sniping. The NPCs will react in a different way to each of them. S.T.A.L.K.E.R.'s NPCs plan ahead by "Goal-Oriented Action Planning" in order to achieve this.

    Bullet physics

    S.T.A.L.K.E.R. uses "realistic" bullet physics, similar in nature to tactical shooters such as Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter or Operation Flashpoint. Bullets are affected by gravity, bounced against solid surfaces at oblique angles, and firearms are highly inaccurate when fired without aiming. To score consistent hits at medium or long range, players must aim using the iron sights on their guns. Additionally, hit damage is pseudo-realistic, and the player can die after only being shot a few times (although later in the game various armor suits and artifacts can be acquired that increase the player's resistance to damage). Late-game depends heavily on scoped weaponry due to the well-armed and amored enemies that keep their distance from the player.

    Physics

    S.T.A.L.K.E.R. uses a heavily modified version of the ODE physics engine, supporting hundreds of physics objects on different levels. Ragdoll physics, destructible objects, realistic bullet ballistics and skeletal animation can all be found in the game.

    Weather

    A weather system is integrated into various parts of the landscape and allows a variety of weather effects, such as sunshine, storms and showers. The weapons available, behavior of the AI, game tactics and ranking systems depend on the weather.

    Multiplayer

    Multiplayer, like many other modern games, is available over both LAN and the Internet with up to 32 players. Currently the three game modes are Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch and Artifact hunt. The game also uses a ranking system.

    Software Development Kit

    A beta for the multiplayer SDK was released on May 14th, 2007. Along with plans to release a strong mod community, GSC promised to release the single player SDK.[10]

    Widescreen resolutions and surround gaming

    Due to popular demand from the gaming community, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. has supported native widescreen 16:9 resolutions since the release of official patch v1.0003. Surround gaming solutions employing up to three monitors such as blackbox TripleHead2Go or the purely software-based "SoftTH" have greatly benefited from this update. A community developed patch also enables setting a custom Field of View and aspect ratio combination.

    Va urma ...
    Itchacy
    Itchacy
    Gold member
    Gold member

    masculin
    Numarul mesajelor : 472
    Varsta : 29
    Localizare : A lost city a.k.a. Bucuresti
    Joburi/Distractii : Anime , Manga , PC stuff , Gaming etc.
    Stare de spirit : Disturbed
    Data de inscriere : 13/05/2008

    S.T.A.L.K.E.R. : Shadow of Chernobyl Empty Re: S.T.A.L.K.E.R. : Shadow of Chernobyl

    Mesaj  Itchacy la data de Lun Mai 26 2008, 23:52

    Continuarea ...


    Initial concept

    Early in the development of the game it was named Oblivion Lost, and the game was planned to have more of a futuristic theme before the idea was reworked to set the game in Chernobyl, being a nearby location to the game's Kiev based development team. Eventually, this was reflected in the change of the game's subtitle to Shadow of Chernobyl. Screenshots and trailers of this early version can be found on various web sites, depicting the robots and spacecraft originally planned for the game.

    Development delay

    The game was first announced in November 2001 and has had its release date, originally in 2003, pushed back several times. Meanwhile hundreds of screenshots of the game had been released, as well as dozen preview video clips, accompanied by other forms of promotion by GSC, such as inviting fans to their offices in Kiev to play the current build of the game. However, due to the delays some considered S.T.A.L.K.E.R. to be vaporware, like the game Duke Nukem Forever, or feared that the game would become a new Daikatana.

    In February 2005, THQ expressed desire to see the game released toward the end of its 2006 fiscal year (March 31, 2006) but maintained that no release date had been set. In October, 2005, THQ confirmed that S.T.A.L.K.E.R. would not be out "until the second half of THQ's 2007 fiscal year - October 2006 at the earliest". In February of 2006, THQ revised this possible release window, saying the game would not be in stores until the first quarter of 2007.

    In an interview at the Russian Gameland Awards, PR Manager Oleg Yavorsky indicated that release was planned for September 2006.

    In 2006, the game came 9th in Wired's Vaporware '06 award.

    THQ ran a competition in January 2007 offering the lucky winners the chance to play the beta version of S.T.A.L.K.E.R., in a 24 hour marathon session. The event, scheduled to take place on the January 24, 2007, was subsequently changed to a 12 hour session days before it was supposed to occur. On the morning of the event, the 'lucky' winners were met at the venue by the THQ staff that had organized the event, who were embarrassed to report that they had been unable to get any copies of the game. In late February GSC managed to release a public beta. A multiplayer demo was released to the public on March 15, 2007.

    On March 2, 2007, it was announced that the game went gold.

    Reception

    Reviews Publication & Score

    Eurogamer 8/10

    GameSpot 8.5/10

    Game Informer 8.25/10

    IGN 8.2/10

    PC Gamer 85/100

    PC Zone 85/100


    Upon the game's release, Stalker was generally favourable with most critics with an average critic rating of 83% at Game Rankings. While the game was praised for its style and depth, other reviewers addressed certain technical issues, mentioning the number of bugs present.

    The game design of the Zone was one of the most favoured aspects. Gamespot praised the style and level design, stating "This is a bleak game, but in a good way, as it captures its postapocalyptic setting perfectly", while Eurogamer called it "one of the scariest games on the PC" going on to say "Like the mythological Chernobyl zone it is based upon, this game is a treacherous, darkly beautiful terrain."
    Game Informer didn't find the gameplay particularly innovative, but still complimented the basic FPS design, saying, "S.T.A.L.K.E.R. isn’t the revolution that we all hoped it would be. It is, however, a respectable and sometimes excellent first-person adventure" where as Gamespot called it "one of the best ballistics models ever seen in a game, and as a result, firefights feel authentic as you try and hit someone with what can be a wildly inaccurate rifle".

    However upon release, Stalker was said to harbour numerous bugs, notably on the recently released Windows Vista version. IGN found the game "tended to stutter quite often, sometimes pausing for three or four seconds at regular intervals, which occurred on two different Windows XP rigs at maximum visual quality", with even some cases of complete game crashing glitches.

    Another criticized aspect was the story, which to some reviewers was "incoherent" and "fails in the specific story of your character".

    Awards

    In December, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. won the Special Achievement award for Best Atmosphere in GameSpot's Best and Worst 2007, that "S.T.A.L.K.E.R. captures the "ghost town" nature of the zone, from the abandoned cities to the overgrown wilderness. Then, the game adds its own paranormal elements, which help make a spooky environment almost terrifying at times".

    Plot

    After the Chernobyl disaster, the Soviet Union decides to use the area, referred to in game as “The Zone”, for special research into the human mind. Results include enhanced ESP, psychic weapons, and even a hive mind, known as the C-Consciousness.

    After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the C-Consciousness takes control of the Zone, and continues its research. It attempts varying degrees of global mind control in an effort to bring about world peace, but these attempts result in the twisting of the physical properties of the Zone and the mutation of the life forms that live there. While they attempt to repair the Zone, they also attempt to hide their existence from the outside world. They create a Monolith in the center of the Zone and brainwash some people into worshipping the Monolith and protecting it from “heretics.” They also build a device, called the “Brain Scorcher”, that turns anyone in the surrounding area into a mindless "zombie". Slowly, a rumour of a Wish Granter in the Zone begins to spread, and people became interested in the exploration of the Zone.

    One day, a Stalker named Strelok and his allies, Ghost, Fang, and Doc, attempt to reach the center of the Zone. After finding the Monolith, they are forced to retreat, coming under attack by the brainwashed guards of C-Consciousness. Strelok is knocked unconscious by one of the C-Consciousness’ experiments, and loses his memory. The others are able to escape the Zone. Fang dies of wounds inflicted in the Zone. Ghost is killed in a Psi emmisions related accident.

    Strelok is found by C-Consciousness and brainwashed to kill himself and his allies. On the way out of the Zone, his truck is destroyed, and he is once again free.

    He finds Doc, who helps him piece together his past, prompting Strelok to return to the Zone and the Monolith. The C-Consciousness explains their actions, and Strelok is given a choice between joining the C-Consciousness in their attempts to repair the Zone and bring about world peace or trying to stop the C-Consciousness from continuing their experiments. If the player chooses not to join the C-Consciousness, he is forced to battle the worshippers of the Monolith. When they are defeated, he destroys the equipment that sustains the C-Consciousness. Strelok is then seen standing in a grassy field, the Zone seemingly gone.

    Alternative Endings

    If the player decides not to piece together his past, he will receive one of five different endings instead, based on the in-game story of the Wish Granter. Actions taken during gameplay decide what specific ending the player receives. The endings are not to be taken literally, but are probably just results of Strelok getting his brain scorched as explained in the true endings. The Wish Granter endings are all bad endings.

    1. If the player kills both the Duty and Freedom leaders, Strelok wishes I want to rule the world. The Monolith will then absorb his soul and he will become part of it.

    2. If the player collects enough money, Strelok wishes I want to be rich. A shower of coins falls around him from above. The Wish Granter has created a nasty illusion, as the coins falling are actually the roof collapsing upon Strelok, crushing him to death under a pile of rubble .

    3. If the player has a terrible reputation, Strelok wishes Humanity is corrupt, it must be controlled. He soon after has a vision of the end of the world, and awakens in the abyss, a dark space with absolutely nothing in it but him.

    4. If the player has an excellent reputation, Strelok says I want the Zone to disappear. He soon witnesses a clean Chernobyl. However, the player notices that Strelok's pupils have vanished, presumably turning him blind.

    5. If the player accomplishes none of the above tasks, Strelok wishes I want to be immortal. The Monolith then proceeds to turn him into a metal statue.


    S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky

    S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky will be a prequel set a year before Shadow of Chernobyl. The game world will consist of a mix of 50% old, remade levels, and 50% completely new levels. The engine now has support for the Inverse Kinematics animation system, allowing more and better animations. New effects such as volumetric lighting are also to be included. In general, the developers seek to take the basics of everything in Shadow of Chernobyl, and enhance them in several ways. Better AI, graphics and new game-play additions, such as faction wars, are some such advertised features.

    Sursa : aici

    P.S. : am pus review-ul in engleza deoarece intrece in informatii si exactitate orice alt review din romana Razz so ... stresati-va putin cu el ^^ dar merita 100% Wink
    Si din nou , rog moderatorii sau pe ingeras ^^ sa il mute daca nu e bine pus la sectiunea "Cafenea" Razz

      Acum este: Lun Iun 01 2020, 03:14