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STALKER 2′s release date was originally last April but moved to next year due to the current conflict between Ukraine and Russia. Despite this, hype and support for the game are still going strong. With a month left, let’s have a quick refresher on one of the key points of the game, the Renegade and Clear Sky Factions.

But first, let’s introduce the game and a brief look into what kind of game it exactly is.

The STALKER series

The STALKER series is a first-person-shooter game series made by the GSC Game World team, back in Ukraine. It has three titles released currently: Shadow of Chernobyl (2007), Clear Sky (2008), and Call of Pripyat (2009).

The games take place in the in-game world’s version of Ukraine, specifically inside the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. This is the zone surrounding the Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster. Due to the intense radiation affecting the area, anomalies artifacts, and mutations had begun to appear. These three provide obstacles during the game alongside other humans and factions that may potentially face you in your journey.

Image Sourced from Xbox YouTube Channel- S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chernobyl — Gameplay Trailer

STALKER plays a bit differently from most modern shooting games. It features RPG elements that help guide the player to explore and understand the world they are in. Furthermore, for this game, the developers discourage you from running and gunning when faced with an enemy. You have limited bullets, health, and supplies which will make you weigh your choices for every encounter.

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The Upcoming STALKER 2

The next installment, titled STALKER 2: Heart of Chernobyl, was announced for release way back in 2010. Unfortunately, some issues occurred during its development. The GSC Game World team announced the cancellation of the game’s development in 2012, two years later.

Image Courtesy of Official STALKER 2: Heart of Chernobyl Steam Page

Fast forward to March 2020, the GSC Game World social media account had teased a game they had been working on in development. This had been a pleasant surprise to many fans and gamers alike. By July of the same year, they had officially made a statement on their development. A new STALKER game was in the works.

It is to feature a new game engine that has been in the works for a while. The GSC team has not yet released or confirmed any other details as of the moment. You can check the official trailer for the game right here.

Factions in STALKER 2

In the STALKER series, aside from anomalies and mutants, people are also equally as dangerous if not more so. The humans are both brutal and cunning, taking advantage of numbers and firepower. In the lawless Zone, factions have sprung up struggling for power and control.

Image Sourced from Xbox YouTube Channel- S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chernobyl — Gameplay Trailer

The two factions, Renegade and Clear Sky, are such examples. While both differ in their goals, they aren’t too different from each other, These two will both do what it takes to achieve what they want.

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About The Renegade Faction

This faction is a faction without a unifying aim or goal. These people are essentially a group of bandits that don’t belong to any other faction and split off from them. Among those within the faction are further subgroups and gangs that you have chances of interacting with within the game.

Images Sourced from MODDB – Realistic Combat Overhaul Mod – by MacBradley; STALKER Renegades Faction Emblem made by Euridice Only

These groups attempt raids on the camps and bases of other factions, pillaging whatever they want in the process. It is truly a faction characterized and surrounded by anarchy and chaos. This hasn’t changed until the events of the 2nd game, Clear Sky.

Due to the catastrophic event known as the Second Emission, the roads to the Great Swamp had now become accessible. The Previously fractured Renegades had banded together to form a proper faction to claim control away from the Clear Sky faction. Despite their best attempts, they were taken down and pushed out of the Great Swamp by the Clear Sky faction, aided by mercenaries. 

The Renegade faction has only been present in the game STALKER: Clear Sky, which may likely suggest that the faction had dissolved in time. Not much yet has been confirmed, but this is one faction that we hope to see again as a familiar antagonistic force in the game.

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About the Clear Sky Faction

Compared to the Renegade faction, the Clear Sky faction is the one that is furthest away from it in terms of structure. This faction unlike the Renegades shares a clear and unifying goal: to explore, research, and eventually resolve the disaster in 2006 that started it all. This is further supported by the group being founded by former members originally responsible for the said disaster.

One of the earliest factions set up in the story, Clear Sky is not one to shy away from using whatever means they have to accomplish their goal. To them, violence is not just a means but also a necessity to progress their research. Whether you side with them or stand against them, if you pose as an obstacle you will be taken down.

Image Sourced from GameFAQs – S.T.A.L.K.E.R: Clear Sky Screenshot, Contributed by MilkMan; STALKER: Clear Sky Patch by artmab-gameshop on eBay
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Their base located in the Great Swamps was heavily damaged at the start of the second game, STALKER: Clear Sky. This led to multiple casualties and the destruction of precious data and research on the Zone. In this moment of weakness, the Renegade faction decided to strike but mercenaries helped push the Renegade back.

They then venture into the center of the Chernobyl itself to save the Zone. However, the Clear Sky faction meets an untimely end. The faction had encountered a strong psychic entity in Chernobyl, which had killed and brainwashed every member it had deemed as a threat.

The current state of the Clear Sky faction is fractured, with only but a few remaining in the Zone. It is unlikely that the faction will be a large presence if ever it appeared due to the aftermath of the previous events. While the GSC team has made no announcement yet, we do hope to see this familiar faction yet again in the next installment of the STALKER series.

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Final Thoughts

Image Courtesy of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chornobyl Steam Page

These two factions were both exciting parts of the previous game that we here at Spiel Times hope to see in the upcoming game. As of the moment, there are no confirmations yet if the two factions will be appearing again in the next game, so for now we wait and see.

So what do you think about these two factions? Are you a Renegade faction or more of a Clear Sky faction? Comment down below!

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If you have any questions regarding the STALKER 2: Heart of Chernobyl and the STALKER series, feel free to drop them in the comments below. For more content, stay with us, here at Spiel Times.

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