S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series developer GSC Game World had some bad news for fans about the upcoming sequel today. The highly-anticipated survival title S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chornobyl has been delayed again. The Xbox console launch exclusive game was aiming for a Q1 2024 launch time frame following its delay out of 2023, but now, the game is slated to land on September 5, 2024.
The announcement arrived via a simple trailer depicting our protagonist enjoying a gathering a campfire. It should be a scene that is familiar to those who caught the game’s very first gameplay trailer in 2021, though some of the characters and the background have changed quite a lot. There isn’t any dialog this time, with a simple guitar tune being played on the side as the protagonist takes a sip of something hot.
According to the developer, the decision to delay the title again was made after to feedback from Gamescom 2023 and following hands-on demos made available to the public. The studio had found that while players had appreciated returning to the harsh and hardcore world of S.T.A.L.K.E.R, its “technical imperfections” had held the experience back.
The additional time will be utilized to do a final round of polishing, per the studio. “While there is absolutely no way to make another delay sound less dim, we decided to be clear about our reasons to postpone the game for the sake of yet another wave of polishing,” it adds.
“Throughout the frankly challenging development process, we understood the time was of the team’s main essence. Seeing the scope of polishing and understanding that we can’t push your patience too much, we were absolutely dedicated to releasing the game in Q1 2024, and we worked extra hard to meet the release window,” says GSC Game World regarding the delay.
“That, however, doesn’t change the fact that at the beginning of this year, we still witnessed the certain amount of technical imperfections that hold S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 below the expected standards for the final experience our fans are waiting for.”
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chornobyl is launching on Xbox Series X|S consoles as well as on PC via Steam, GOG, Microsoft Store, and the Epic Games Store. Pre-orders are now live across all platforms too, offering the $59.99 standard, $79.99 Deluxe, and $109.99 Ultimate editions for purchase. Don’t forget that the title will be a day-one release onto Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass services.