STALKER 2: Everything we know

GSC Game World

STALKER 2 transports players back into the radioactive wasteland of the Zone, so here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming title, including its scrapped release date, trailer and platforms.

For those who haven’t heard of the S.T.A.L.K.E.R series, the game‘s 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.

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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. The Zone is looking more beautiful, deadly, and deceivingly desolate than ever before, so here’s everything you need to know: from release date to platforms and trailers.

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GSC Game World
It might look like an irradiated hellscape, (because it is) but for veteran stalkers, returning to the Zone is a dream.

Is there a release date for S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2?

Unfortunately, S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 no longer has a scheduled release date.

It was originally set to release on April 28, 2022, but was delayed soon after until December 8, 2022. Now, due to disruption from world events, the title has been delayed indefinitely, but is still in development.

The developers confirmed the news on Twitter, explaining that the game needs more time in order for it to be up to standard. Here’s the tweet in full below:

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While this is sure to be disappointing for fans of the series, others may concede that a delay is often preferable to an incomplete game at launch.

In March 2022, GSC Game World, the game’s Kyiv-based developers said that work on S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 had “shifted to the sidelines,” due to world events. However, in a Discord chat from May 2022, the team confirmed that work on S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 now “continues” when responding to a question from a fan.

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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. As an added bonus it will be available on the Xbox Game Pass at release, which means you’ll be able to play at release as long as you have a subscription.

Unfortunately for PlayStation players, the title 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 iconic platform.

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S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 trailers

S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 Announcement trailer

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.

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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 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.

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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.

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 Xbox Games Showcase 2022 gameplay trailer

S.T.A.L.K.E.R 2 NFT controversy

Initially, GSC Game World announced that a series of NFTs (non-fungible tokens) would accompany the game’s release. Hoping to create a “Stalker Metaverse,” several NPCs and cosmetics were set to be locked behind the premium currency barrier.

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In the wake of immediate outcry regarding the decision, GSC quickly scrapped the NFT idea, writing “based on the feedback we received, we’ve made a decision to cancel anything NFT-related in Stalker 2. The interest of our fans and players are the top priority for the team. We’re making this game for you to enjoy – whatever the cost is. If you care, we care too.”

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.”

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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.

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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.

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. Can’t wait until then, though? Be sure to check out our other game release hubs:

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