‘Stalker 2: Heart of Chernobyl’s peculiar gameplay design prevents use of vehicles

Stalker 2: Heart of Chernobyl gameplay trailer snapshot

Due to a gameplay choice that’ll keep players at their toes, vehicle-riding is made impossible in Stalker 2: Heart of Chernobyl.

The sequel to the original Stalker will be decidedly bigger than the original, according to developer GSC Game World. It makes for an ideal setting to put vehicles into for easy and faster transport in-game. Something that gamers, in general, would be familiar with by now, with the likes of Far Cry and Halo featuring it. But being on wheels, despite an expansive map, is simply not the best option, at least not on this game.

According to Studio PR

In an interview with the Russian publication DTF, PR manager Zakhar Bocharov highlights the game’s “open-worldness” and some unique gameplay elements. The PR himself could not disclose more than what’s necessary, considering the game’s still in development and not to spoil the good stuff. But his one admittance is sure to give players a strong impression about the game.

First off, Bocharov details how big the game is going to be. Which, as it appears, comes at a rather precise 64 square kilometers. Many would raise an eyebrow knowing that vehicular rides would not be possible in such a vast landscape.

But the studio’s representative claims that, with perils set across the “Zone,” not being stealthy is simply out of the question. Particularly, alluding to how the game is designed to make certain elements appear unwitting to the player, if not being sneaky. A vehicle, like a car, is seemingly going to gather attention and to the detriment of the player in-game.

The idea may somehow present the notion that everything happens on foot. However, the PR would refute by stating how the game will have its own fast-travel system: in an “unusual way”.

By Original Design

Removing the vehicles from the game does not seem to be a last-minute decision, however. Bocharov claims that no contents were cut during the course of the game’s development. Which, in retrospect, harkens back to how the seminal title used to have the design but was cut off prior to full launch. The experience was not completely removed from players, however. Various eager modders have found their ways to restoring said content, albeit not in its complete extent.

Stalker 2: Heart of Chernobyl is a developing title from a studio based in Ukraine. With a slated release window of April 28, 2022, the game is set for release on PC and current-gen platforms. Xbox Series X|S owners can get the game on day one via Game Pass. PS5 owners, however, will have to wait a little longer (three months) for the game to release in the platform.

Image used courtesy of GSC Game World/YouTube Screenshot

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