Talker: Call Of PripChat

By RPS on September 15th, 2010 at 12:03 pm.


Having grabbed some mods and restarted Call Of Pripyat, it turned out that both Jim and Alec were playing through this most recent Stalker title at the same time. It seemed logical, therefore, to have a bit of a chat about the game. Earlier this year Jim had called it “one of the most interesting shooters we’re going to see in 2010”, but does that still hold up? And what about those mods? Let’s see what the chaps said, below.

The main mod that both Alec and Jim were using is Atmosfear 2, which overhauls textures, the weather system and the ambient sounds. The other one worth considering, especially for a second playthrough, is RCOM, which rebalances the weapons so that they all do more damage, as well as tweaking AI and other bits. This makes battles against human enemies tougher, but far more rewarding. It’s a great mod.

The big daddy of CoP mods right now, however, is Redux. This megamod introduces tonnes of changes, including making survival tougher, rebalancing the economy, changing weapon balances, randomizing NPC weapons, and allowing plenty of customization in how you play the game on installation.

Of course what some people will be waiting for is the Complete mod. That’s in development too, as you can see over here. Pavel’s epic retexturing will probably have the zone looking the best it has ever looked. And we can’t wait to get our hands on it. No date yet, but it shouldn’t be too long.


Anyway, that chat.

Jim: So, we’re both playing through Call Of Pripyat at the moment. Me for the second time. You for the first time?
Alec: Yeah, I didn’t catch it first time around – partly due to time and partly because Clear Sky soured my fondness of Stalker and I was genuinely worried about compounding that. Enough time past that I felt ready. Are we both in agreement that it rights a lot of Clear Sky’s wrongs?
Jim: Yes, in terms delivering more zone to get lost in, it certainly does. I mean I still have a lot of time for Clear Sky’s ideas: fighting men is more interesting, and the faction mods push it towards functionality… but what I wanted was more zone survival, more mystery, and more freedom. Pripyat does all that. Also, I don’t know if you noticed this, but Pripyat is /much/ more RPGesque
Alec: It’s very much “here’s the Zone, now go do your thing” And yes, I was feeling a lot of the same kicks that I got from Morrowind. Just surviving in a strange land, with a background hum of loot’n'stat compulsion. I also like that it feels a few years on from Stalker – there’s less of the big, set-piece moments and more of an ecosystem, that fragile balance between groups and even monsters – even down to the Snorks, living in random caves, clinging to life rather than being AND NOW HERE IS THE SNORK BIT.
Jim: Yeah, I’ve actually found much more of that on this second playthrough. I think because before i wanted to get to the end, to do a review. This time I have no interesting in that, and have just done everything in Zaton. I’ve found lots of options I missed before, like the capacity to double-cross the bandits. There’s actually a huge amount of subplot stuff in there. There are some real surprises, too. Like finding the lair of one of those psychic monster things when I was hiding from an emission. You could hear it warn me as I entered the cave. An amazing little detail. Then there’s the getting into Pripyat sequence where you have to raise a team. It’s so much better than the allies you get at any other point in the game, because they are your team. Also, I saved a stalker who was out looking for artifacts, with his mate standing their helplessly. It was great. I don’t remember them actually looking for artifacts before.
Alec: was that the guys in the Boiler, walking into the flames?
Jim: Yeah, that’s it. A set-piece then, just a little one.


Alec: Yeah, that’s a set-piece rather than random occurrence. And there’s an awful lot of that, but they’ve implemented it really smartly – so it seems a part of the Zone’s general comings and goings rather than a big, screaming A Thing Is Happening Look At The Thing Happen.
Jim: I think that’s the thing with Pripyat, it’s less linear, so the set pieces are smaller, more distributed than in Chernobyl.
Alec: It’s much more scripted and even polished, but in a way that supports rather than undermines the free-roaming. There’s a real sense of tightness (tight!) where it could have been flabby and vacuous as a result.
Jim: Did you install any mods in the end?
Alec: I went for Atmosfear and TGS or whatever it’s called – pretty much graphical and ambient sound tweaks rather than changing the balance, as I want to know what the devs wanted to make before I go and screw with it utterly. Atmosfear is fantastic though – the nights just look extraordinary. Especially the looming silhouttes of giant, ruined machinery. You’re on the challenge-changing stuff though, right?
Jim: I installed those same mods, and also RCOM, which boosts all the weapon damage a bit. Making it easier to kill people, and easier for them to kill you. I’ve had to be really, really careful against mercs and bandits. But it’s a good change, I think. That said, Vanilla CoP is really good as it is. It’s not a game that really needs mods. However, I stripped out the TGS pack and reinstalled Atmofear 2, as I was having some sky texture glitches. It turned out it was the high-res textures from Atmosfear messing up the sky. I fixed it with a install of the normal res stuff. Quite a professionally produced mod, in the sense that it has an excellent installer and so on.


Alec: I lucked out with some early weapons due to miraculously surviving an ambush (i.e. sheer bloody luck), so I’ve poured all my money into upgrading those and killing dudes hasn’t been an issue. Monsters sure tear up my armour though – I’m spending a lot on repairing that, otherwise I’m left essentially one-shot-dead There’s a strong sense that the devs learned a lot this time. There was a sort of reckless abandon to Clear Sky – as thought they were indulging themselves with half-finished concepts and stuff that made them giggle in the pub. This is laser-focused, all about realising the fantasy of Zone life. I like that finding the tools necessary for mechanics to make the better upgrades is a sort of off-the-map sub-quest. You have to read the text and explore maybes off your own back, rather than trek to a neatly-marked spot on the map.
Jim: Yeah, the armour thing is interesting. On my first playthrough I relied solely on upgrades of the standard equipment. I never bought better armour, and only once changed my rifle. And yeah, there’s quite a bit of hidden content. And even some genuine puzzles. There’s even a mad spatial portalling puzzle in the second area. It makes me excited to see what they do with Stalker 2, for sure.
Alec: I’m a little worried they’ll call of Duty it. They might look at Metro 2033 and think “that made a bit of cash”. But if so, Pripyat is a fine farewell to open Zoning
Jim: Maybe, but I get the sense that GSC now are the guys who wanted to stick with Stalker. Aren’t 4A the linear-FPS spin off from GSC? And I think it’s really important that Stalker offers that kind of play. If CoP is the last of its kind, I will be genuinely distraught.
Alec: Yes. But Stalker would never appear on console. It depends how much cash they’re making from this, really – they’ve got a good history of selling over time at least. It feels like the moment where they finally got high ambition to match up with technical practicality. I keep trying to think what I’d have made of it if I’d never played another Stalker. I imagine I’d be terribly confused.


Jim: Maybe, but then games like Monster Hunter Tri still do a more open ended approach on the console. Just because Stalker hasn’t crossed to multiplatform world doesn’t mean it won’t, or that the open-endedness can’t be translated in some way. I mean I want it to remain on PC, for obvious reasons, but it’s certainly doable. I get annoyed with a lot of the “dumbed down for console” comments we get on here, particularly because in most cases I want to say “no, just dumbed down!” In fact I feel a bit odd that this is the only game of its kind. I find it genuinely strange that there aren’t more sandboxes experiments with the shooter. I mean the only other option we got was Far Cry 2. I think the reception that game got was in some way related to Stalker. And then there’s Fallout 3. That, I guess, is the closest the console has come to Stalker.
Alec: Fallout 3 isn’t quite so interested in building atmosphere, which remains the aggravatingly easy buzzword for Stalker games. They want you to feel a certain way, and the actual nuts’n'bolts mechanics are fascinatingly secondary. There’s still a lot of stuff such as how annoying it is to shoot the animals, but they’ve decided that the feeling of overwhelmed terror is more important than a great shooting model. And that’s why we don’t have many more sandbox shooters – the laundry list of saleable features is too often a great priority over making an explorer’s fantasy
Jim: I think we don’t have many sandbox shooters because developers simply aren’t allowed to make them.
Alec: Which Stalker do you think will be your most persistent revisit until 2 arrives? Pripyat’s very much shot to the top of the list for me, it feels like there’s tons to chip away at without necessarily having to progress. Just a slice of Zone life whenever I fancy it.


Jim: Call Of Pripyat is a cheap purchase, now well-catered for with mods. I can’t see any reason why any PC gamer should not have at least tried it. It’s different enough to Chernobyl to be a big deal. I will be back in Pripyat for a while now, I think. My second playthrough with be lengthy. There was some stuff unresolved last time, like the random group of monolith soldiers. I have to know what happens with them.
Alec: I’d quite like to do the bandit chain stuff at some point too, see what happens when the whole world hates me
Jim: I’m not sure it’s possible – you need the guy in Zaton to travel back and forth between the areas. I don’t think there’s another way to do it. Which is a notable change here – the faction stuff is there, but way, way in the background.
Alec: I prefer the faction stuff that way – organic rather than metered. But I guess there’s less scope for dominance and balance-shifting.
Jim: No real scope at all, sadly.
Alec: Anyway, well done GSC. You’ve thoroughly redeemed yourself here.
Jim: Hooray! Right. Now to get radiation poisoning just after dawn, and drink myself better with cheap vodka. (And in the game.)

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81 Comments »

  1. dude says:

    You should do an article on Stalker clear guy

    • Heliocentric says:

      I’m officially making that the Clear Sky protagonist’s name. “Stalker Clear Guy”

    • dude says:

      dont you dare i just copyrighted that CC

  2. Yeah says:

    Get out of here STALKER / I said come in! / You can’t go there! / etc.

    • Junior says:

      Greatest crime of the Stalker Complete mod, muting those guys.

      When I’m walking through there and some chap is telling me to get out, and he’s holding an RPG, it’s one of those little touches that really adds to the atmosphere.

  3. Sobric says:

    Is this posted by generic RPS because no-one wants to own up for the horrendous title-pun?

    • Atrocious says:

      How is that “horrendous”? It’s EPIC!
      RPS puns, best puns!

  4. Longrat says:

    I need help! For some devilish reason, CoP has atrocious loading times on my PC. I can’t seem to resolve the issue with patching or setting tinkering. Does anyone by any chance know what to do? Please help!

  5. DollarOfReactivity says:

    I saw that you were trying COP again and decided to give it another go, too. I had been waiting for the Complete mod, but went with Redux instead. Looks nice and I get to try the “hardcore” experience.

    So far, loving it all over again. But it is different your second time through; I didn’t run screaming into the night when the assault on the tanker mission went down. :)

  6. B0GiE-uk- says:

    I have this game but not really played it. I put the Redux mod on and was not impressed by the visuals and the hardness level.

    Maybe i need to spend more time on it.

  7. dancingcrab says:

    Clear Sky, even with Pavel’s Complete mod, killed my enthusiasm, much like Alec. Must work on finishing it so I can legitimately play Pripyat.

    • Atrocious says:

      I more ore less skipped Clear Sky (after trying some basic moving around) and went straight to CoP. From all I heard I can say I don’t regret that.

      CoP was much better from the first moments on and I might even finish it one day.

    • AndrewC says:

      I admire the dedication, crab, but there is no need to play Clear Sky in order to play Pripyat – there’s no pure, complete or true experience you’ll be missing out on. Let Clear Sky go!

    • Hazelnut says:

      I played through CS, but then CoP wasn’t out. Just quit if you don’t like it mate. If you want to make sure you’re money wasn’t wasted try the Total Faction Warfare mod when you’re done with CoP – it removes the story entirely and just focusses on the faction wars. Choose your faction and try to take over the zone!!

    • Στέλιος says:

      Once I reached CNPP I sort of lost interest in CS. It just did not feel interesting enough to me.

  8. Archonsod says:

    *Not really a spoiler since you can see it in the achievements* It is possible to do it via the bandit chain. It’s the same as the Duty / Freedom choice – all that really happens is you get slightly different rewards (including IIRC the daily equipment drops at your stash) and instead of the wandering stalker parties helping you out the wandering bandit parties do instead.

  9. goatmonkey says:

    No mention of SGM the awesome but horrifically intensive Russian mod that adds loads of new missions and items. http://sgm.itams.us/

  10. Fringe says:

    I’m also playing CoP again, picking up from where I left off earlier in the year. It really is a good game to get lost in and the day/night cycle is fantastic.

    Don’t go out at night…

  11. cHeal says:

    I really like CoP, great game but the first is still the best for me. It’s unrelenting in it’s disregard for the player. It just throws stuff at you and if you can’t deal with it you have to retreat and try again, Or try something else. In CoP I feel that in any given area I can completely outstrip the opposition in terms of equipment and just smash through them.

    SoC didn’t really have that, you /could/ get pretty heavy equipment in Cordon but you really had to work hard for it, you didn’t just happen across it or find it in a stash randomly. The issue could be argued either way but for me it meant I felt far far more vulnerable in SoC than I have in CoP, which is what I have really loved about the game. It always seemed to be more about survival than advancement in SoC, something which seems to be flipped in CoP.

    SoC also gets my vote because it was more adventurous in my opinion. It didn’t have the open area’s of CoP but it was still something completely different to anything I had played before. CoP seems more of the same but bigger and more forgiving.

    • Cael says:

      I kinda agree with this, I found it very disappointing my first playthrough when I got some pretty awesome weapons in Zaton very early on. In shadow of chernobyl there was definitely a weapon progression that makes you feel underpowered throughout the entire game and I really miss that feeling.

      On the other hand I really love the mechanics of call of pripyat, far more than any of the other stalker games. Artifact hunting, weapon repairing and upgrading, side quests, anomaly fields are a huge improvement over the first game making it feel much more interesting. These improvements are enough to make call of pripyat my absolute favorite of the stalker games, if only I could find a mod that was right for me (and I’ve tried all the major ones that are out now).

    • Archonsod says:

      I’ve never had a sense of weapon progression from any of the Stalker games. In fact, it’s probably one reason I like the game so much, there’s so many differences the best weapon tends to depend entirely on your playing style.

    • qrter says:

      I agree, Shadow of Chernobyl is the best. A lot has to do with a sort of sentimentalism – like you say, it really presented something quite different at the time. I remember walking up toward an anomaly for the first time, just watching it pulse, completely fascinated.

      Also, no other STALKER game had any of the actual horror and fright that SoC had for me. That’s a really important aspect to me, because most horror games get it completely wrong.

      I’m finding CoP’s openworldness to be a bit overhyped – to me the smaller maps of SoC presented more variation in environment, which was more interesting to me. A lot of CoP’s world just seems empty, nothing much to do, nothing much happening. You even see this in the stashes, with that strange new idea of laying items out in the environment – I hardly bother picking them up in CoP, while stashes were always a fun thing to look for in SoC and CS.

  12. Baboonanza says:

    I played this recently too, and loved it. I had been very late with Chernobyl so I played that with the complete mod and then Pripyat vanilla. The vanilla version of CoP is superior in almost every way to SoC even with the Complete mod. It’s even almost bug-free.

    The world feels very alive, with monsters raoming around and lots of little side-quests / things to discover. All the different gameplay elements they’ve put in work much better together, with the sole exception of Atrifacts which seem almost pointlessly underpowered compared to SoC Complete.

    My main complaints would be that the end-game is too easy, especially if you’ve done a lot of side quests, and that the end comes too soon and without any form of ascalation. Suddenly you just complete a relatively ordinary mission and its over. In genrel the Pripyat area is less well fleshed out than the earlier spaces too.

    Definitely one of the best games of 2010 for me. I’ll play it again when Complete comes out, hopefully on a harder setting.

    • Archonsod says:

      The mission isn’t the problem for me, I quite like the Evac mission in fact. The problem is there’s no prior warning this is the last mission. Pripyat actually has around as many sidequests and similar fun things as the other two maps, but you’re not sent running around the map by the storyline missions so it’s easy to miss stuff unless you decide to wander off and explore.

    • qrter says:

      Really? How do you pick up those sidequests? And where?

    • Muzman says:

      I found a few I didn’t spot the first time, like rescuing Zulu. Mostly I found them by wandering around and you stumble upon something to do.

  13. Hazelnut says:

    I’m also replaying CoP right now, mainly due to last week’s mod news which had the release of CoP redux. I tried that and was enjoying it, unfortunately I got fairly frequent CTDs so I removed it and decided to try the SGM mod that Luomu mentioned in comments:

    “Anyone feel like writing something about this russian mega-mod for CoP, called SGM. I’ve heard a lot of good things about it, but haven’t tried it yet and the official site is in Russian. Download + English translation is available here though: http://sgm.itams.us/

    And Jetsetlemming expounded the virtues of. I have to agree – WOW, just WOW. This mod absolutely blows my socks off. After initially trying to install it onto ShoC, I managed to install it. It was a bit tricky to get into at first because the readme etc is all in russian.

    It’s so worth it though, the extra stuff added is so good and well done, especially the new missions and the way they’re weaved into the standard game main storyline. There are four joinable factions, new achievements, new weapons, new kit as well as the new quests. Previously to playing this my favourite Stalker mods were Oblivion Lost 2.2 for ShoC and Total Faction Warfare for CS. This wins hands down so far (only played 25 hours or so)

    If you do start it, here’s a few pointers:
    - The PDA in your inventory – use to get hints etc for the mod.
    - The mod options only appear once you’ve loaded a game.
    - Switch off the SGM anomalies unless you want them on.
    - Be aware of mines (can also be switched off) which can lead to hilarity or frustration.
    - Broken weapons & suits can be delivered to mechanics to provide spare parts for repairs.

    God I love the stalker games. I also have no idea why no one else has come up with similar games. I have lots of favoured games, but Stalker is definitely in top 3! I will be furious if the CoD Stalker 2. In fact I wish they would just crank out more using the Xray engine. It’s pretty enough for me, all I want is more to do in the Zone.

    Thanks go to all the Stalker mod makers – it’s all that will tide us over until 2012.

  14. ChaK_ says:

    STALKER is just the best FPS ever. And I mean it, it beats HL in my book.

    I’m in my 3rd run or pripyat, with reloaded 0.6 + atmosphear, it’s great, and I’m still seing quest I didn’t have the first time.

    Oh and I didn’t kill noah for once, that bastard used to take some shotgun shell in the face…. he was actually very usefull

  15. Langman says:

    It’s good to see Jim pointing out the fact CoP works perfectly without mods, unlike the two earlier Stalker games which felt unfinished.

    It’s not only the best Stalker game, but probably the best PC game of the last 2 years. I’ll be sad if it is indeed the last of its kind, as we move relentlessly towards Total Cross-platform Gaming™.

  16. Dubbill says:

    Atmosfear 2′s fog is my favourite weather effect in any game. You can feel it and smell it.

  17. oceanclub says:

    I loved Stalker but, afterwards, I was all Stalkered out for a while. Bought CoP on the Steam sale but think I will wait for the “Complete” mod to come out first.

    P>

  18. KindredPhantom says:

    Interesting. I have been playing CoP recently too. I got it in a steam sale a week or two ago and have been steadily playing it. I find the STALKER games are best played slowly and plodding through enjoying the zone and the atmosphere of the games, not rushing through to the finish.
    After i have completed my first playthrough i think i’ll back up my saves and start another with the mods mentioned in the article.

    I actually enjoyed Clear Sky, it was different to Shadow Of Chernobyl and i enjoyed the faction warfare even though it was a little buggy. I remember leading the charge for Freedom’s assault on Duty’s base and wiping out all of the Duty members.
    The only thing that annoyed me with Clear Sky was the last few minutes of the game, it turned the game into something it wasn’t and left a bad taste after finishing it.

  19. Muzman says:

    Atmosfear is great in CoP. The blowouts are epic (the rest of the weather is great too).

    I should try a rebalance mod at some point. CoP is too easy in the money stakes (although it doesn’t seem so at first, particularly with corpse looting now in the vanilla version). I love that they included freeplay this time, but by the time I was at the end the second time through I had fully upgraded armour and had the measure of every anomaly. The prices for artifacts meant I was rich as Croesus. Doing mutant hunts also loses something when there’s nothing to hunt them for. I still love being a trapper in SoC, collecting tails and legs and jaws for cash. It gave you a reason to tangle with things that are just as easy to avoid once you know the lay of the land well enough. You didn’t need a mission, as such.
    I’d love to see a rebalance where food, artifacts and ammo is ultra rare and expensive and you can make a living hunting in a pinch. That’d be cool.

    Is there any particular indication how well Call of Pripyat did/is doing? I know GSC talk about ‘series’ sales a bit. But CoP itself should do as well as SoC ever did. It addresses most things that people complained about in the first game (bugs, cohesion etc). Clear Sky couldn’t have really ruined the series’ rep that much could it?

    • Hazelnut says:

      That’s a good point, I kinda assumed that people who like ShoC would buy CoP once the word got out that it wasn’t CS. Although I didn’t mind CS, but then I played both of the first two a year or two after their release so the bugs were mostly patched out already.

      CoP is the only one I bought on release for full price. I hope they made plenty of money, although I know quite a few people who tried ShoC and didn’t get into it. I think it’s the apprehension and heart-racing aspect of it, caused by the sheer unpredictability of the game. That’s why I love it so much, but I definitely have a constant low level of adrenaline coursing through my body when I play the Stalker games. :D

      So yeah, love to see good sales figures. Would alleviate my fears about CoDification of Stalker 2. I think I’d be more worried if they weren’t Ukranian devs though. Don’t compromise GSC!!

  20. BobbleHat says:

    Same here, and the game runs like a dream until I press escape or quicksave, where there’s at least a 10 second pause before it goes to the menu or saves. Odd.

  21. Casimir's Blake says:

    A great article, but still no mods of interest. SMRTER 0.45 continues to be absent, as does Lost Alpha, and no-one else seem to be up to the challenge of adding more maps. I played through CoP three times, it was truly the best of the series distilled and fine-tuned (even better with SMRTER). But having experienced it, and the previous two games, enough times to have exhausted their quests and narrative, I decided reluctantly to lay them all to rest.

    It’s an excellent series, and Call Of Pripyat was a tremendous start to the year that also gave us Amnesia, Minecraft Survival and Mass Effect 2. But CoP desperately needs more places to go, things to do, and stories to tell. And the Pripyat map further fleshed out!

    • Hazelnut says:

      Seriously, try out SGM which I mentioned above. I also wanted more content rather than just more pretty, and it delivered.

    • Στέλιος says:

      Wasn’t there to be some modification that would add maps? Maybe that was for SoC.

  22. Jim Rossignol says:

    Different texture sets definitely help with the ugliness of the vanilla version.

    And yes, there is a pattern to it you can complete.

  23. Moonracer says:

    I just started COP recently and am loving it. My only complaint is load times (even after messing with the prefetch files). Unmodded the game took 5+ minutes to load the first map. Although this makes death that much more tragic.

  24. Freud says:

    What I like most about CoP is that they finally figured out what makes a game good. Ambition is great but only when it is matched by making the game work as a game. Hope for Stalker 2 should be very high.

  25. Eric says:

    @kobzon I did the same – I thought it was a bug, not a puzzle. I think I’m going to have to fire CoP back up and try some of these mods.

  26. R3D says:

    i would love to see a stalker total conversion mod for arma2

  27. Da'Jobat says:

    Just so you guys know, Stalker 2 is, in fact,

    • Da'Jobat says:

      Derp. Stalker 2 is in fact going to be multi-platform.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      Aye, but they said that about this generation of Stalker, too. And as I said in the chat, that doesn’t mean losing Stalker’s way of doing things. There is nothing in Stalker’s model that couldn’t be ported to console. Except maybe leaning. And being moddable. And being good.

    • Nick says:

      NOT BALANCED FOR LEAN

    • Freud says:

      The main reason for not working on console are probably their buggy releases and their engine not being all that optimized. Both things don’t work all that well in consoleland.

    • DrGonzo says:

      I thought they were using the Crysis engine? I would love them to do that. Hopefully if they don’t have to worry about working on an engine there won’t be quite so many bugs.

      Also, I’m not sure where the idea that console games aren’t sandbox. There is of course GTA, which is one of the biggest console franchises, and Red Dead Redemption. I’ve just recently completed Red Dead Redemption and it seems they were somewhat inspired by Stalker. The wildlife really reminded me of roaming around the Zone.

      Personally I would like them to go for a less combat route in Stalker 2. More like the film Stalker.

  28. Justin says:

    The SGM mod is neat. I had to uninstall it. Not because it was bad, but because I realized that I was 10 hours in and would probably play another 40+ just to get through the whole game again with its additions.

    The Variation mod and Atmosfear (in Redux) are very easy on the eyes. If they were combined with SGM… woo.

  29. Στέλιος says:

    No one else has played Ceano’s Mod, Call from Pripyat? I admit that after completing CoP and hitting the freeplay I have not felt like a full replay (unblike ShoCwhich I have completed half a dozen times, mostly with Oblivion Lost). Anyway, have been mostrly just sticking around Pripyat, wandering about, getting in to skirmishes (and lamenting the fact I cannot reach the ferris wheel). Interestingly I have not played ShoC much since, even though I would spend hours on it before in freeplay (OL 2.2) getting jobs and roaming around causing chaos.

  30. Joflar says:

    If you want something spill the beans! If not, take a hike.

  31. Vodkarn says:

    Does anyone know a good mod that makes ejection chamber for the weapons on the right side of the gun? It’s a small thing I know, but it bugs me.

    Also if anyone is having insane long load-times, something in Redux does it. It not takes 2 minutes for me to ‘quicksave,’ but bizarrely only half that time to do a manual save through the pause menu.

  32. Fumarole says:

    Is that the one that leads to the heart of stone (I think that’s the name, it’s been a while)?

  33. Lem says:

    I believe you need a specific artifact to solve that puzzle (I don’t know for sure because I can’t even find the puzzle to start with), but that’s OK because you can get one from a certain lunatic living on an old barge in Zaton.

    • R3D says:

      yes this is far from a total conversion, but yes it is a start.

      i mean i could have just said i want to see a lemmings mod for arma2 and someone would have linked me to something someone was working on =]

    • Gdog says:

      OOh lovely stuff

  34. Phried says:

    *Sigh @R3D and @Jim Rossignol

  35. Urthman says:

    What kind of system do you need to run Call Of Pripyat with the Atmosfear 2 mod?

    • Fwiffo says:

      Stalker is one of those games that *can* run well on some quite shoddy systems due to being really scalable from DX8 to DX11 renderers, but takes quite a high end system to truly max out.

      I’ve played them on a Athlon XP 2200+ and Radeon X1650 all the way up to a Core2Quad system. Just tweak your settings till you’re happy. It does like a good gpu more than anything really.

  36. agentsparrow says:

    Truth be told I love all three games.

    SoC created the best intense horror, and the progression was fantastic. Besides the CNPP, one of my most memorable situations was at the brain scorcher, where the visuals go brown monochromatic and the repeating noises that wash out all other sound. Felt like a nuclear daydream. Very real sensation. And nothing is better than getting the first glimpses of the power plant and then trekking to it and finally entering it. Epic.

    I didn’t deal with factions much in Clear Sky and went right through the story, loved it. The gunfights with human opponents is really good there. The ambushes and chokepoints.. Just being in the zone doing anything is fun for me. I completely love the story and setting of the Stalker series. The end game was strange and left me wanting, but it wasn’t a disaster to me.

    CoP is a very nice polished game, the anomaly interaction is great. Visuals stunning, everything great, but of course by now, strange and neat is already expected. Nothing compares to the first playthrough of SoC. It’s like Toy Story and Toy Story 3. The first one introduces the fact that toys talk and do things, and act like people for the most part. It introduces the concept. Whereas the third one polishes the story and creates a lot more substance knowing that people are already familiar. Like the ‘And here’s the snork’ bit from SoC. It works there, but not in CoP. But that’s why both are excellent!

    Long live Stalker!

  37. Cooper says:

    I’m soon to leave Kiev having spent 5 months here and visiting the (real) Zone at least once, normally twice or thrice a week for my current PhD research.

    Yet one of the main things I’m looking forward too going back home is replaying Call of Pripyat (and actually finally sucking it up and playing Clear Sky)! Having played those games and now seen so much of the Zone, It’s incredibly interesting to see what they did with it.

    (And, yes, atmospheric may be an easy buzzword – but it does the job of description very well. There is something wonderfully untangible about what people respond to in regards to the zone – both in the game and in the real zone.)

    I’m seriously considering organising, planning and guiding a trip next year myself to the zone that will take people specifically to places seen in the Stalker and that CoD game. If I do get around to sorting that out.

  38. MK says:

    I’m trying to do a vanilla playthrough of CoP right now but some of these mods are really tempting me, especially Atmosfear 2 and…TGS, is it? I haven’t beaten CoP yet so I don’t want anything that changes the gameplay significantly from what the developers intended, yet. Do these two mods significantly change the gameplay mechanics and story? Or are these exclusively eye candy enhancing mods?

  39. Flyguy 2000 says:

    you ask and it shall come true I hear they will port it to english soon.

  40. malkav11 says:

    I’m waiting for the Complete mod to start this one out, but sooner or later I need to go back and give Shadow of Chernobyl another run with a different major mod. Oblivion Lost, mebbe.

  41. wazups2x says:

    I’m waiting for STALKER Complete 2012!

  42. Korgan says:

    The firefight dynamics get really interesting with the SGM mod. I have an exoskeleton, and now those pesky mercenaries can’t hurt me a lot, but the Russian kill-teams introduced in the mod are still very deadly. So you have to be real careful while climbing over a crest or slogging through a swamp.

  43. Corbeau says:

    @Στέλιος

    Not only am I playing Call From Pripyat (after reading about it in the last CoP comments thread on RPS), I’m doing a Let’s Play of it. Which is quite entertaining on my end, since I keep discovering new things even after having beaten the game twice already. You never really learn something until you have to teach it.

    LP thread:

    http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3348580

  44. Corbeau says:

    Also, Atmosfear 2 is absolutely gorgeous.

  45. DigitalSignalX says:

    Is Moddb the best site to find all the CoP mods? I really don’t like the way they have them organized – and was hoping for someplace a little more friendly, the nexus sites for oblivion and fallout spoiled me.

  46. Jessaroo says:

    I have a suggestion for Stalker 2. One of my favorite things CoP implemented was the “wandering groups” mechanic (CS had it, but not in this world, with this focus). After beating the game and basically wrenching every drop of experience from the side quests and stashes I started over again to try a pure “life in the Zone” attempt; full-on Stalker-nerd role-play. I wanted to see if simply following a cluster of Stalkers around and helping them out vs. beasts and bandits could hold my attention, in a “Livin’ in Oblivion” NPC way. It was fun for a bit, but it took all my meta-play forces to keep it up for more than a couple of hours.

    What made me want to try it in the first place, though, is the attraction of really chumming it up with the different stalkers and perhaps even forming relationships. If simply getting a group to go from yellow to green feels good, how fun would it be to actually affect the level of interaction; the possibilies of forming (or even being able to meet up with) your own “best buds” team from the different areas and factions, which CoP teased your with for a period?

    Here’s my dream situation for Stalker 2: You approach a cluster of stalkers. You’ve helped them out before, so they recognise you in their greetings, vocally, outside the dialogue box. You ask what they’re up to; they’re heading to an anomaly for artefacts and invite you to join. Instead of warping, you have to follow them, but your role becomes linked to their current objective. You support them under attack and they audibly call out thanks and encouragement to you. You give them a medkit and they thank you with stash info or cash, which you could also do for them (offer better weapons you have in your pack, etc.) As you travel, the group members interject quiet stretches with lines pulled from a large, randomized chatter script. Try to ditch them and go too far to hear them call out “Where are you going, stalker?” “Hey! The anomaly’s THIS way!” And multiple instances of subsequent loyalty could mean a devoted team for that area, or maybe the choice of a single companion (cheaty, but I so love comanions in FPS’s, and in Stalker they’d probably die fast anyway At least you’d care a little about them before they do). Plus, all this could be reversed for negative interactions.

    In the first three games it’s always exciting to make it back to the outposts and campfires; sparks of warmth in the hostile Zone. To be able to pull that spark out into the Zone-at-large in a fashion that affects it uniquely and makes you actually GIVE A CRAP about those so-full-of-potential wandering groups would almost create a world that could supercede the necessity of a main quest at all. I dunno, maybe I’m just making this whole thing sound like it needs to be an MMO… Bleh. Whaddya think?

    • Hazelnut says:

      Sounds great. Pretty hard to do though. Looks like they’re going more of a pretty engine route, which is fair enough if you want to sell to the masses. I think CoP is pretty enough and would definitely be more interested in enhanced social a-life.

  47. Graeme Strachan says:

    I’ve got all of the Stalker games, (including an extra copy of Shadow of Chernobyl on Steam) but have never managed to sink more than about 10 hours into each.

    On that fabled day when “I have time”, I’m going to go back and play them all to completion, as they reall are some of the most atmospheric games going, weven Clear Sky which I rather enjoyed for what it was rather than for what it never tried to be.

  48. Keith Dickson says:

    I agree with the social aspect of forming groups of STALKERS – I’ve also done the role playing of just following a group around for a bit, but have gotten bored or distracted rather quickly and eventually given up.

    One of my favorite things to do in Shadow of Chernobyl is after getting quite far into the story (i.e. maybe around the Red Forest/Radar site or at the very least the military warehouses) is go back to the Garbage and try to find out what Bes is up to. He’s the guy you meet when you come into the Garbage for the first time and you help defend against the bandit assault in the vehicle scrap yard. Sports a nice moustache.

    Anyway I’ve played through SHOC several times with a variety of mods (Complete, LURK, Oblivion Lost etc) and some times I will find him dead, but other times he’ll be very much alive, usually having been forced out of the scrap yard and making a camp where the bandits used to come from. Sometimes by this time the loners have one or two guys outfitted with Exo skeletons and better weaponry that they’ve scavenged so at least they put up a fighting chance against larger groups of bandits.

    One of my favorite memories of playing SHOC was meeting up with Bes and following his rag tag outfit on a scouting mission towards the old ruined hangar where, by this point, bandits were based (Think this was in Oblivion Lost). Anyway , Bes, his guys and myself quickly dispatched of the bandit guards, but failed to notice an entire military patrol coming up from the hills near the scrap yard. Needless to say it was quite violent. Only one Loner in an exo-suit survived besides myself, but poor Bes was among the dead. I gave him a quick eulogy and then quickly made my escape back to the relative safety of the Bar.

    One of the main reasons I love RPS so much is their aknowledgement of the STALKER series. I know Clear Sky is no where near as great as the other two but I still love the atmosphere of the swamps and to an extent the Red Forest. Call of Pripyat and Chernobyl probably account for at least 250 hours each of playing time but I would guess more. As you can probably guess STALKER ranks as my favorite game series of all time, and that’s saying a lot coming from a guy with a Xbox 360 (tons of games for it), PS3 (tons of games for it as well), and pretty much every major PC game released. Sure I’ll play them all a bit, some very little, some quite a lot, but none have every captured my imagination or love as much as STALKER.