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

By Aaron Linde, Jun 26, 2008 11:40am PDT Developer GSC Game World has released new details from its upcoming survival FPS S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky (PC), due out August 29 from publisher Deep Silver.

A prequel to the 2007 shooter S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl (PC), Clear Sky is set just one year before its predecessor. Players take up the role of Scar, a mercenary caught up between warring factions competing for power and territory.

The publisher touts the game as delivering a "realistic simulation" of the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. world in which mutants hunt on their own and enemy factions fight eachother, leaving the choice to the player as to which side to join.

From the publisher:

War of factions
In S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky, the player assumes the role of Scar, a mercenary s.t.a.l.k.e.r. In a unique mixture of first-person shooter and complex role- playing game, Scar fights for survival within the Zone and its hostile sectors. The new Zone territories are explored by s.t.a.l.k.e.r.s scattered in groups—and these individual factions soon engage in relentless battle. As a mercenary, Scar quickly finds himself in the middle of a war of factions over territory, artifacts, and power. It is up to the player to find out on whose side Scar has the greatest chance of prevailing.

Clever adversaries, luscious graphics
Just like its predecessor, Clear Sky perfectly captures the sinister atmosphere within the death Zone. DirectX 10 support enables spectacular graphics, including dynamic transitions between day and night with absolutely realistic light effects, as well as very detailed landscapes and lifelike animations. At the same time, the developers saw to it that S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky also works with DirectX 8 and DirectX 9.

Special attention was given to realistic, independent thinking and actions of the NPCs. The artificial intelligence from the predecessor game was strongly improved, so that foes and allies now make their own situation-based decisions that impact the further course of the game. For instance, the outcome of battles is not predetermined. Only in the last few levels is the player guided towards a given end of the story, which leads to the events described in Shadow of Chernobyl.

Key features

  • Unique mix of action-laden first-person shooter and complex role-playing game
  • Gigantic scope: many new levels are available, plus some completely overhauled levels from S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Shadow of Chernobyl and many side quests with motivating rewards
  • Realistic simulation of the extensive S.T.A.L.K.E.R. world: enemy factions fight each other, mutants hunt of their own accord.
  • Intermediate movie-quality cut scenes complement the thrilling back-story leading up to the events of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Shadow of Chernobyl
  • Numerous new in game features, such as fast travel, or extensive modification and repairing armor and weapons
  • Greatly improved artificial intelligence
  • Complete DirectX 10 support for state-of- the-art graphic effects (God rays, soft particles, SSAO, dynamic volumetric smoke, dynamically wetting surface (rain effect) etc.)
  • Dynamic transitions between day and night with realistic weather effects
  • Detailed graphics, including an all-new animation engine
  • Hugely expanded multiplayer part with many varied game modes and up to 32 players online or over LAN.

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