The S.T.A.L.K.E.R. franchise has amassed a loyal cult following after the original installment struck fear into the hearts of gamers and has fascinated them ever since 2007. Fifteen years later, the Zone will be back in business with S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2: Shadow of Chernobyl, and here’s everything you need to know.
For those who haven’t heard of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. before, the plot involves the infamous Chernobyl Disaster of 1986, where on April 26 the nuclear reactor near Pripyat, Ukraine melted down, resulting in one of the worst nuclear disasters in human history.
In the alternate timeline of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. the exclusion zone around Chernobyl, commonly known as “The Zone,” experienced another explosion 20 years later in 2006 — just before the original game came out in 2007 — after scientists set up shop to study the anomalies and other phenomena happening within the disaster’s radius.
This not-so-deserted nuclear wasteland left in the wake of these events sets the scene for S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 as well and based on what we saw at E3 2021, the Zone is looking more beautiful, deadly, and deceivingly desolate than ever before.
- S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 release date
- S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 trailers
- What is S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 about?
- S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 platforms
S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 Release date
S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 was officially announced all the way back in 2018, but we had to wait until 2020 for the first official trailer. Now, following E3 2021 we’ve got our first look at actual gameplay, along with an honest-to-god release date.
Considering the series has gone through several failed attempts at resurgence since its 2007 release, it’s fair to say loyal fans are chomping at the bit to see what the sequel will look like in full with the latest technology when S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 comes out on April 28, 2022 — just two days after the 36th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 trailers
The first official trailer for S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 dropped on July 23, 2020, and did give us an early glimpse into CSG Game World’s updated version of the horrors and mysteries Zone, but not a whole lot else.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 2020 trailer
Various snapshots of some of Chernobyl’s most iconic landmarks are scattered throughout the dusty camera lens, including the infamous Ferris Wheel that serves as a harrowing memorial to the Pripyat Amusement park in S.T.A.L.K.E.R., and real life.
On the more fantastical side, we see the environment’s littered with the odd-looking physical disturbances known as Anomalies, and we’re given a glimpse at one of the mostly abandoned, underground facilities scattered around the Zone.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 2020 in-game engine teaser
As a holiday gift to all the loyal fans out there, or so we like to think, GSC Game World put out a short trailer that they described as “how the game actually feels: fast-paced change of scenery, ominous landscapes and the ever-present feeling of an inevitable danger accompanied by a barely-distinguishable guitar soundtrack.”
Based on the constant feeling of dread just about everyone gets playing a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. game for the first time, this sounds just about right.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 E3 2021 gameplay trailer
During E3 2021’s Xbox presentation, we got our best look yet at S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 and boy — does it look good. The trailer opens the only way it should: with us sitting around the campfire, swapping stories with our fellow stalkers after another hard day in the Zone.
Through these flashbacks, we get looks at the combat system, some loot, and even a few of the characters we’ll be running into during the game. It wouldn’t be a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. game without mutants though, and we won’t directly spoil anything, but be ready for a better look at these monstrosities than ever before.
What is S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 about?
While we got a better look than ever before at the sequel during E3 2021, as far as a story goes we didn’t get all that much, but we still know a few things. One bit of info we do know for sure is that the player character seems to be a mysterious new stalker named “Skif.”
There’s also a shot on a rooftop overlooking Pripyat that introduces an unnamed character in black who looks like he just stepped out of a Hideo Kojima game. Whether this character is an ally, an enemy, or a bit of both remains to be seen. Another thing we know for sure: there was no sign of our old friend Sidorovich to be seen.
Apart from new characters, it wouldn’t surprise us to see factions like Duty, Freedon, Clear Sky, and the Bandits make a return from the first game. Being the Zone, it’s safe to assume the military won’t be far away either.
More details on the story of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 are sure to come out as we get closer to April 2022, so be sure to check back for all the latest info.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 platforms
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 will be available on PC through Steam and the Epic Games store, and the Xbox X|S. It will not be out on Playstation 5 at release, and there’s no indication when or if it will be coming out on Sony’s platform.
As an added bonus it will be available on the Xbox Games Pass at release, which means you’ll be able to play at release as long as you have a subscription.
So, grab some vodka (for the radiation, of course), start stockpiling that diet sausage, and we’ll see you in the Zone come April 28, 2022.
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