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Kay and Spike play S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Gulp!
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Helmut
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June 3, 2011 - 11:42 am
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Without spoiling anything, I can reveal that being a faction member (either faction) can result in an easier time late in the game, but not to such a degree that you should join if you don't want to.

 

Really? I thought the game easier at the end if you were neutral.This isn't really a spoiler.

When you come down the hill out of X18 and you're neutral Duty helps you against the Monolith people at the gate to Pripyat. Also, heading North from the Warehouse towards the Red Forest, the Freedom people at the gate getting you to help them against the Monolith horde coming south, are those interactions different if you belong to a faction? Wont you have to fight through both Freedom and Monolith at the border if you're antagonistic to Freedom? 

My Dark Souls single player sensibilities are protected by a +10 GfWL Firewall of Ineptitude

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Steerpike
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June 3, 2011 - 1:21 pm
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You know, Helmut, you've got me wondering. Those two events would both be neutral if you were neutrally-aligned, so presumably either side would ask for assistance.

I was thinking about a little later on, in [REDACTED], after the [REDACTED] is [REDACTED] and before you get to the [REDACTED]. It's such a madhouse in that place, and I was thinking in terms of at least one side not shooting at you quite so much. But I think I'm mistaken. It's more Clear Sky where faction alliances or non-alliances affect the endgame.

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

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Helmut
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June 3, 2011 - 1:54 pm
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I've never finished having joined any factions. Both Freedom and Duty ask for assistance during the approach to and inside  Pripyat and they're happy to see me and we prop our feet up on bodies and share sausage and laughter. Later, there is military and Monolith, and they're antagonistic and we do not. Maybe I should spice things up and live a little and stop sitting on the fence and take a stand and see what happens.

My Dark Souls single player sensibilities are protected by a +10 GfWL Firewall of Ineptitude

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Spike
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June 3, 2011 - 3:40 pm
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Steerpike said:

You know, Helmut, you've got me wondering. Those two events would both be neutral if you were neutrally-aligned, so presumably either side would ask for assistance.

I was thinking about a little later on, in [REDACTED], after the [REDACTED] is [REDACTED] and before you get to the [REDACTED]. It's such a madhouse in that place, and I was thinking in terms of at least one side not shooting at you quite so much. But I think I'm mistaken. It's more Clear Sky where faction alliances or non-alliances affect the endgame.

Geez!  This thing reads like something released under the Freedom of Information Act.  Spoiler feature broken??  Huh?  Huh?

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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Spike
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June 3, 2011 - 7:42 pm
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I'm neutral again, and it only cost me 60K RU, but I got a Stalker suit as consolation prize!  [Image Can Not Be Found]

I went to Warehouses to ply Chef with vodka so he'd tell me how to get a bodacious gun that the Duty head wanted.  Chef was dead.  In his kitchen.  But I suppose that's how he'd have wanted to go.  [Image Can Not Be Found]  I found another way to get the gun.

Now I'm thinking that his death is why my PDA showed that job in red.  I'm guessing it had nothing to do with Freedom being temporarily mad at me.  No clue about the CTD's  in the Warehouse area, but they have stopped.  Maybe I had a bad save.  Who knows?  All is well now.

Onward.

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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xtal
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June 3, 2011 - 9:02 pm
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Things of note:

Hello, I've been long absent from this lovely and cozy thread. I haven't played STALKER in about 2.5 weeks. I will resume very shortly.

The only way other Stalkers have ever become "green" to me is if they were injured and I offered them a med kit. Odd that's the only way to befriend loners.

For the first time in a dog's age I've actually changed my Steam name; it's not "mboone" anymore; I've modified it to reflect the interesting choice made by Germany, which Steerpike mentions previously in this thread. I discovered the news on Wikipedia several days ago and was frankly shocked. Such a forward-thinking country such as that ... to abandon nuclear energy, possibly quite highly influenced by Japan, which can only be described as a horrible and unfortunate circumstance, one of no fault to the construction of nuclear plants, nor of their general stability and safety. Granted, the initiative is to move to "even cleaner" energy such as wind and solar, but this can't happen in 11 years. They will be relying most heavily on coal again. Coal. Horrible, dirty, necessary. It's not a good, nor a bad decision. Just...a decision.

You can still catch me on Steam by the recognizable penguin avatar!

If being wrong's a crime I'm serving forever

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Spike
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June 3, 2011 - 9:45 pm
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The Doctor was in.  Kind of.  I think.  Got the info, anyway.  No surprise there.

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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kaythomas
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I have moved on enough that both Freedom and Duty would like me to help.   They are so dumb.   The last thing they need is me stumbling around and screwing everything up.   But I am still in early days.   Looking around and trying to understand.  Whenever I can just walk around without someone shooting at me or being shreaded by a pack of dogs,  I am happy.  

Kay

Imagine life with no hypothetical situations. 

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Spike
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kaythomas said:

I have moved on enough that both Freedom and Duty would like me to help.   They are so dumb.   The last thing they need is me stumbling around and screwing everything up.   But I am still in early days.   Looking around and trying to understand.  Whenever I can just walk around without someone shooting at me or being shreaded by a pack of dogs,  I am happy.  

Kay

I'm glad you're hanging in there, Kay.  If you need any...anything, just ask.

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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xtal
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June 4, 2011 - 4:46 pm
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Which are Duty; are they the guys guarding the entrance to Rostok from, er.... the Garbage is it? They seem to be dicks. But then, everyone probably is portrayed that way in such a small, hostile world.

If being wrong's a crime I'm serving forever

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Steerpike
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June 4, 2011 - 5:01 pm
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Yeah, that's Duty.

Philosophically Duty believes the Zone is an evil that should be destroyed. They're at war with the Zone, but they have no way of fighting it, so basically they're just holier-than-thou militants desperate for a world with order.

Freedom believes that the Zone is cool, man, like, totally. The Zone has rad stuff in it and those Duty guys are, like, totally harshing their mellow. All they wanna do is chillax, bro, who needs orders or morning roll call?

Monolith believes the Zone is god, and they're its protectors. And maybe it is, since it has given them the ability to survive in areas too radioactive for humans.

 

I'm really hoping they do better with the factions in STALKER 2. I'd prefer five or six large factions plus maybe a dozen small ones, with alliances and disputes that change and materialize over time, based in part on your character's actions. I also want to see greater emphasis on Stalker gangs - small groups, like 4-12. You spend the whole of this first installment tracking down Strelok's gang. In STALKER 2 there should be many, many more memorable characters to whom you can get attached, and with whom you can form a gang of your own. You can go this to some degree in Call of Pripyat, but it wasn't as fleshed out as it could be.

I think immersion and connection in this series comes from identifying with the Zone - the Zone is the true protagonist, all the people are just proxies, even the Marked One - but there's no reason you can't have human characters as well as a place.

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

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Spike
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June 4, 2011 - 6:54 pm
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xtal…this is what I read on the interwebs. I haven't gone out of my way to learn more about each faction in-game.  If anyone who's played has a different take on the factions, feel free to comment. 

Monolith has nothing to recommend it to me.  As for Duty and Freedom, each has a point, but I can't buy the whole loaf.

Duty:

A paramilitary group known for its discipline, whose members live according to a strict code. Duty members are the only group who refuse to trade unique items from the Zone with the outside world. According to rumors, all artifacts found by the group are passed on to scientists. Its members consider protecting the outside world from the Zone's dangers their primary objective. Most of the group's operations concern destroying monsters, hence Duty raids often save normal stalkers from serious trouble. The faction has long been at war with Freedom.

Freedom:

Anarchists and daredevils who declare themselves fighters for a free access to the Zone and consequently find themselves in constant conflict with the army, military stalkers and the Duty faction. These so-called freedom warriors believe in sharing all information about the Zone with the rest of the world and challenge the state's monopoly over the Zone's secrets and wonders.

Monolith:

This group displays many features of a religious sect. Its members believe in the existence of a complex alien crystal, the Monolith, located somewhere in the center of the Zone. Most stalkers treat Monolith adepts with contempt and consider them as lunatics. From its inception the group strives to block all progress towards the center of the Zone, protecting the Monolith from other stalkers. Rumor has it that the group has a large base deep in the Zone, but its exact location is known only by the members.

 

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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Scout
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June 4, 2011 - 7:17 pm
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I will probably join Freedom before long. I have an odd affection for them. Hanging out in their stupid warehouse area with like fourteen guys against the world. Duty is just arghh. Monolith is arghh plus scary. 

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Spike
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June 5, 2011 - 3:13 pm
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Red Forest.  Monolith.  Scorcher.  Done.  By far the hardest part of the game.  I wasn't sure if I was going to have enough meds and ammo to survive it. 

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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Scout
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June 5, 2011 - 4:35 pm
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Congrats Spike.  I'm still plodding along, about to enter the Red Forest.

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Spike
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Scout said:

Congrats Spike.  I'm still plodding along, about to enter the Red Forest.

Take meds.  LOTS of meds.  I had the green scientist suit that I got from Sakharov in the Mobile Lab, so I had the automatic anti-rad injection feature of that suit.  This was a help.  But I needed more than the 15 injectables and 20 med kits that I took in with me.

Scout, you might not want to read the info below before you go into the Forest.  Good luck in there.

 

About a third of the way in I had gathered loot from the Monolith I killed.  The going wasn't too hard at that point, so I left the Forest and stashed my stuff in a blue chest at the border (up the hill on the east side of the road into the Forest, near a trailer).

I went back into the Forest, and by about half way, or a bit more, I ran out of injectables, and was down to 4 med kits.  So I hightailed it out of there back to Warehouses and bought meds from anyone who would speak to me, including the guys around the campfire outside the HQ. 

Went back in fully stocked, and damned if I didn't use up almost everything by the time I did what I went in to do.  But I lived, and made it out...but I cheated a bit.  Going in I checked all bodies for meds and ammo.  I left weapons behind because I didn't know what I was getting into.  But I intended to take some of those on my way out.  After I completed my task, and woke up, I headed out of the lab.  At some point, while still in the building, I heard an announcement on the loud speaker.  Crap!  Reinforcements were on the way.  So, weakened as I was, I fast-traveled out and avoided more attacks.

Question for those who've been through Red Forest and the Lab:

At some point I got an automatic task on my PDA.  I think it said "Kill the Monolith Stalker".  I killed all but one of the Monolith I encountered in the Forest and Lab.  The one I avoided was in a tower on the west side of the road, near where the road turned west.  I may have got him when I got into the lab grounds, but I'm not sure.  I never got a message that I'd completed the task, and the task disappeared from my PDA at some point.  I don't remember if it went into the "Failed" file or not.  Anyone familiar with this task?

I think I will go to Pripyat later.  Oh!  The idea of a hotel sounds so relaxing (she said as she gathered meds and ammo).

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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Spike
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June 5, 2011 - 6:36 pm
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Helmut said:

I've never finished having joined any factions. Both Freedom and Duty ask for assistance during the approach to and inside  Pripyat and they're happy to see me and we prop our feet up on bodies and share sausage and laughter. Later, there is military and Monolith, and they're antagonistic and we do not. Maybe I should spice things up and live a little and stop sitting on the fence and take a stand and see what happens.

I head to Pripyat tonight, I think.  The idea of sharing sausages and laughter with anyone in this game, especially with feet nicely propped, sounds great.  Why do I think it is not to be?  I don't want to see any more Monolith.  I can dream, can't I?

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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Scout
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June 5, 2011 - 7:04 pm
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Oh, I thought you had finished the game already. [Image Can Not Be Found] That makes me feel a little better.

I've been stocking up for the last couple sessions. I have over a 100 bandage kits and about 30 medkits but only a couple of yellow radiation scrubber kits. About 60 injectors and 1100 Nato rounds and a few grenades.  Probably going in this evening. I do have the armor that's supposed to the top of the line. So I am about as ready as I'll ever be. I'm carrying about twice the health and ammo I usually carry.

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Spike
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June 5, 2011 - 9:20 pm
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Scout said:

Oh, I thought you had finished the game already. [Image Can Not Be Found] That makes me feel a little better.

 

Far from finished...or at least many, many hours from the end.  It took me at least 6 hours yesterday to get through the Forest and the Lab.  I had to stop for a break every 45 min. or so.  My heart and adrenalin were pumping at full speed.  And the almost-constant sound of radiation just had my nerves on edge.  That, and the dying.  And the mis-firing of my weapons.  Slow.  I imagine that Pripyat will be at least as slow.

"…you just keep on trying 'til you run out of cake."

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kaythomas
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Spike said.........>>Far from finished…or at least many, many hours from the end.  It took me at least 6 hours yesterday to get through the Forest and the Lab.  I had to stop for a break every 45 min. or so.<< 

This makes me feel better about limping along at the rear.   I rarely play more than an hour and a half a day.    So maybe in my small playing segments, I might get there.  Where ever there is.  Whatever is means.

But I seem to have gotten over a major hump of the beginning game.   I am now swimming in weapons including an honest to god incrediable sniper rifle.  And I have a bunch of other great weapons and tons of ammo.  And I have about 50,000 ru.   I am trying to decide which weapons to focus on so I can carry the least weight the the fewest types of ammo.   In the Fallout games I had found the weapons I wanted and used them in game after game.   But I am not there yet with STALKER. 

Well, slowly moving on.

Kay  

Imagine life with no hypothetical situations. 

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