Tchernobyl- and STALKER

15°C, N wind and sunny(mostly)

GAME: playing a new game- as mentioned a few posts ago. This is work commenting on because it’s so immersive, there are lots of detailed touches that make the game worth exploring as an activity in its own right. there is a trading element to it, but primarily- it is a fps game based around The Zone- the exclusion zone around Tchernobyl in northern Ukraine. Do I need ot explain the story of that place? No probably not.
Here is a Wiki article of you need it.
See the screenshots for a taster– one is of a camp- where one of the stalkers, wearing a radiation suit occasionally whips out an acoustic guitar and strums a tune. There are strange wild animals around and the weather is very changable, heavy rain showers are frequent. The characters speak Russian, but the interface is in English- unfortunately, I don’t speak any Russian. There is very little to spoil the immersion in the game- some of the character animation smarts, especially when figures are walking upstairs- but then I have never seen that done well in any game. The whole thing really needs the newest computers to run though, it does support widescreen monitors, and represents DX9 shown off to its best.
Normal mapping and shadow mapping is very well done- though the former seems a little over-sharpened in my opinion. Another area I admire is model making, especially buildings and all those wrecked vehicles- rusting Lada cars are around, with flat tires and flaky paint. I really ought to try out normal mapping more often in 3DS Max. The overall effect matches the mood of those photos of the city of Pripyat that have been published in recent years. the Tarkovsky film "Stalker" is an obviousl link, my copy arrived this week and from the first bit I watched looks set to be an excellent film- it has been over a decade since I saw a Tarkowsky film- Solaris.
Oh well, more tomorrow. I really mustn’t let this game take up any sleep time though.
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