Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl – Everything We Know So Far
Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl (stylised as ‘S.T.A.L.K.E.R.’) is one of the most highly anticipated games in the world. It’s the next instalment in a post-apocalyptic, first-person survival shooter series set in and around the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone in Ukraine, and for almost 20 years, it has been a franchise that has terrified and entertained millions of gamers. In this walkthrough, we’re going to break down everything we know about Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl, which is set to be released around 15 years after its predecessor: ‘Stalker: Call of Pripyat’.
When Is Stalker 2 Coming Out?
Originally, Stalker 2 was set to release in 2012, and then on April 28, 2022, and then December 8, 2022, but owing to development difficulties brought on by the War in Ukraine, it was postponed time and again. At the time of publishing, it’s set to be released in the early months of 2024. It doesn’t have an exact release date, but over the last year or so, it has been showcased at events like Gamescom, with gamers getting hands-on with the open-world, apocalyptic title – so it’s almost ready to go.
Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl was first announced way back in 2010, just a year after the release of the game’s predecessor. It originally boasted a planned release date of 2012, but more than a decade later, it still wouldn’t have been released. Over the years, internal issues such as mass layoffs impacted the development of Stalker 2 immeasurably, but the developer, GSC Game World, remained resolute in the desire to ultimately produce this ambitious, long-awaited game.
What Engine Does Stalker 2 Use?
Stalker 2’s development underwent a sizeable pivot in 2021, with GSC Game World announcing that the project had seen a substantial update and that Stalker 2 would now run on Unreal Engine 5. This will ensure that Stalker 2 boasts cutting-edge visuals, physics, and details, making the chilling, eerie world of Chornobyl that much more immersive.
Stalker 2 will be released on Xbox Series X|S and PC – there are no plans whatsoever to bring the game to PlayStation consoles. This was made clear by GSC Game World some time ago.
Is Stalker 2 Going to be on Game Pass?
Despite postponements, development issues, internal struggles, and mass leaks, Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl will still be released on the Xbox Game Pass service from day one. This is news that was shared more than two years ago, and it’s a huge win for Xbox gamers around the world. It’s expected that it’ll be available on both Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass.
Will Stalker 2 Have DLC?
It might seem odd to ask about Stalker 2 DLC before the base game has even been released, but people want to know what the life expectancy of their game is. It has been confirmed that Stalker 2 will have DLC, and the ‘Ultimate Edition’ of the game boasts a season pass that grants access to the two planned story expansions, and anything else that comes once the game has been released. It isn’t yet known when the DLC will be released post-launch or what it’ll be.
Here’s the latest Stalker 2 trailer, which showcases the game’s sumptuous visuals and expertly crafted character models:
Stalker 2 Gameplay Features
In Stalker 2, players assume control of an individual firmly planted in the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone and are given the clear task of surviving by any means necessary. It’s an open-world game with RPG elements, giving players the ability to explore a large environment packed with opportunities to uncover secrets, unlock new items, scavenge resources, and fight some terrifying, mutated creatures – and plenty of human enemies.
It features intense survival mechanics, which means players will need to eat, drink, and tend to their injuries if they want to survive. We know that Stalker 2 is also story-driven, which means there’s a narrative to follow and missions to be completed across the wide, open map. From brutal stealth mechanics to the ability to charge into a fight guns blazing, and from avoiding immensely powerful ‘anomalies’ to solving the mysteries of the wasteland, Stalker 2 is a diverse and intriguing game.
It isn’t yet known if Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl will have multiplayer features. In a previous update, GSC Game World stressed that multiplayer mechanics would be added in a free update once the game was released, but it wasn’t explained when that would be or what the multiplayer features would look like.
What Versions of Stalker 2 Are There?
Those looking to pre-order Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl will be able to pick from four editions: Standard, Limited, Collector’s, and Ultimate. They range from just $59.99 to $339.99 for the Ultimate Edition. At the highest level, players will receive the game, a steelbook, stickers, a poster, a map, patches, tokens, a keychain, a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. figuring, a lamp, a backpack and much more.