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Friday, June 09, 2006

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. C.H.A.N.G.E.S.

Outside of a certain Duke Nukem title and possibly a sword-named game, STALKER might be my favorite target to bash. It's just so easy. When it was first announced, it was clear that the scope and breadth of the title would be contradictory to it's successful release. A massive, impressivey rendered and dynamic world filling out a single player experience with a robust and diverse multiplayer section as well?

Sure enough, the game was delayed and delayed again. Now the team is coming clean a bit, saying they're removing some features like the wide use of vehicles and the ability to sleep. When it comes to their long delay, they're pretty honest:

Why so long and what are the reasons? The most correct answer would be - it is very big and complex. 5 years ago nobody on the team had experience to create a project of such level, and “experience is a son of tough mistakes” as the saying goes. After all, however, we are on the finishing line. We want to release S.T.A.L.K.E.R. in a way to bring you fun and justify the long wait. Thanks to everyone genuinely supporting the project. We love S.T.A.L.K.E.R. It’s our child. A problem child. And you will meet it soon.
-- S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl PC game changes (digg it)

Harder to be hard on them when they're being all upfront about it. I'm guessing it slips on more time, sheds a few more features and will ship as a decent, but not overwhelming title. It will take a reviewer twenty minutes to type the words "maybe if the title had shipped when planned".

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