Monday, January 23, 2012

S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat - Early Impressions

The Stalker games are very near and dear to my PC gaming heart. Along with Crysis these games were the reason i built a gaming PC. If you never heard of Stalker: Call of Pripyat or Clear Skies or Shadow of Chernobyl its fine. These games are niche and not really popular outside of PC gaming. I have beaten both Stalkers (Clear Skies then Chernobyl) so i had to get the third game. Stalker : Call of Pripyat is an open world first person shooter developed by GSC Game World and published by Viva Media , LLC. The game originally released back on February 2, 2010.

As far as my graphical settings go they are the following: full dynamic lighting (turned-on), duality settings (maximum), resolution (1280x768). I basically turned everything on max. Stalker games run best with Radeon cards so i felt comfortable. The game runs good on my 4870, quad core, 6 gig ram set-up. The title screen of Stalker: Call of Pripyat shows New Game, Load Game, Multiplayer, Options, Credits and Exit to Windows.For the record Stalker games have always been famous for bugs, glitches and performance issues. Early in my playthrough i already experienced some weird NPC glitches.

Just like all Stalker games before it Call of Pripyat starts off with a voiced narrative cutscene detailing the events of past Stalker games leading up to Pripyat. Major Degtyarev is the main protagonist this time around. He was sent to investigate a helicopter crash site in the zone. The story of all Stalker games revolves around the "Brain Scorcher" and a man called Strelok who managed to go inside that area of the zone which can blow your head up literally. The zone is a very dangerous place as is. There are mutants, radiation and killers all over the place. Stalkers make there living finding rare artifacts in the zone that they sell for alote of money. The zone is a place where a catostrophic nuclear accident happened. Its ground-zero sort to speak.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat Image
If i had to give you an overview of Stalker: Call of Pripyat so far i would tell you its an open world FPS game with alote of reading and interacting with NPCs. The world has a true day and night cycle.Stalker is a sandbox game with main missions, side missions and a ever evolving world where weather can easily kill you. You can loot practically everything. NPCs always have something to say wether its giving you a job or selling you items. The atmosphere is extremely thick in Stalker: Call of Pripyat. From the land, visuals and sound design the zone seems to always take up its own identity.

Aside from the glitches so far the game is good. Yes its brutally unforgiving like past game (difficulty). Using bandages and stim packs can keep you alive. The missions early into the game has you helping Stalkers on a huge stranded oil tanker. One particular mission has you attacking a group of bandits on a big rusty deserted ship near the oil tanker. The shooting feels weird in this game just like the others. The mutants ranged from dogs and small monster lookin things. I must point out how great the lighting is in this game. The entire game looks really good considering its a sandbox.

But at night the game takes on another atmosphere.The guns i have are mostly stolen from dead bandits or Stalkers. I have a Shotgun, SMG, Assault Rifle, Grenades, Pistol and a bunch of other supplies that i looted. You have to keep track of how much you carry or else you will be slowed down. So far Stalker: Call of Pripyat is living up to Shadow of Chernobyl and Clear Skies. I'm very early into this twenty plus hour game so i have alote yet to experience. Expect a full review in the future, thanks for reading.

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