May 08 Clear Sky Q&A

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Published by FFxSTALKERx 14 years ago , last updated 5 years ago
Here are five fan questions answered by the guys at GSC. Enjoy. [quote][b]1. Everyone respects STALKER for providing one of the most atmospheric FPS experiences to date, but this respect is tempered by the fact that the final release code was rather buggy. What lessons have the team learnt from SoC in terms of play-testing and bug hunting? Can we expect a more stable playing experience this time around? [/b] There is complexity of testing and bug fixing inherent in our life simulation system, which makes the number of potential combinations practically unlimited. A group of 30 testers hired by the publisher worked on Shadow of Chernobyl. All bugs discovered by this team have been fixed. Unfortunately, thousands of different configurations owned by the gamers have left their mark, since we could not test for all of them. Much also depends on quality of the different computer parts. Most players have not encountered any serious errors, which shows a fairly good level of game stability. As for Clear Sky, it has been under testing by a group of testers in our office for several months. This means that we get more precise error reports, can react to them faster and almost immediately see the results of our fixes. The testing team will be at work up until the very release to print, so we are confident that the game will work consistently and reliably. [b]2. Will Clear Sky provide a complete free roaming experience, or will it have a definitive endgame at which the narrative is brought to a conclusion? i.e will it have points-of-no-return like SoC's NPP level? [/b] Clear Sky will offer the player many more possibilities and freedoms — unrestricted movement between locations, availability of a huge number of missions, various weapon and suit upgrades, real "stalker-like" searching for artifacts, life of proper faction bases — these are only some of gameplay changes, which do not even affect the storyline. There are also some things in store for the explorers. For instance, there are places in the locations that you would not find by merely following missions. Only explorers of the Zone will be able to find them. That said, there are conditions that must necessarily be met. One of them is that completion of the storyline of Clear Sky has to coincide with the beginning of the original game. To achieve this there is a point of no return at the end of the game. After all, the storylines of both games must form a single story. [b]3. Some people are rather upset that the Russian dialogue has been ditched in favour of localised versions. Authentic language played a big part in creating SoC's unique atmosphere. Would it not be possible to include an option whereby the player could choose to enable/disable the original Russian dialogue? I partly understand GSC's decision to go for full localisation in order to boost sales... but really SoC's charm was built on its mother tongue, please don't abandon it! [/b] S.T.A.L.K.E.R. truly is a game that is based on atmosphere. This has been recognized by both the players and the press. This is why all the campfire discussions and other non-storyline remarks have been left original. However, in order to be better absorbed into the storyline, the player needs to easily and clearly understand what is going on and what it said by the storyline characters. Many players prefer to listen to storyline dialogues instead of reading them. After all, one has to admit that text cannot always create an effect comparable to voice and play of a professional actor, especially considering that all actors voicing S.T.A.L.K.E.R. spoke with a Russian accent — also for better atmosphere. This is a sort of a best compromise between atmosphere and quality of conveying information. [b]4. Will we see the main player's shadow in the first person perspective? [/b] Due to some technical limitations, the situation with the player's shadow will be the same as in the original game — the shadow will only be present in the DX8 renderer. [b]5. Is the new flaunted cover system in Clear Skies going to only be usable by the AI? [/b] Keep in mind that S.T.A.L.K.E.R. is a first-person shooter, first of all, not a third-person stealth action. The player is already capable of recognizing how to use various covers. The main goal of the Smart Cover system is higher realism and more effective appearance of battle scenes. NPCs now recognize which covers are nearby and how they can be used. Combined with a huge number of new animations, their actions have become more purposeful and realistic. After all, the main goal of the AI programmers is to make the player feel like he is playing against real people. Smart Cover is another big step in breathing life into fighting. [/quote] Thanks to Valentine Yeltyshev for sending us these!!!
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