On forum: 06/06/2011
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and other things, like monsters being stuck to their own areas.
I don't really understand this line since Shadow of Chernobyl's monsters were more tied to their specific locations than the monsters in Call of Pripyat.
For example if a Bloodsucker spawned in the Cordon it was always by that old mill and could not move even 50m away from the building, like it had on an invisible leash.
CS & COP felt too scripted and linear compared to SHOC.
I can sort of agree with Clear Sky but Call of Pripyat was a lot less linear than SoC in lots of ways :
First, the quests had more freedom in how and in what order you pull them off in. Granted, the game would have needed more missions that affect each other like The Hit and the mission where you raid the Bandit / Merc transaction.
Second : the map structure didn't force you into these narrow chokepoints where you always had to fight that same herd of rodents over and over again. You're also allowed to go freely between Jupiter and Zaton however you wish (though it still costs you money). I'm not really happy about the way you can't walk between the levels without a Guide, some kind of compromise between those would've been nice.
Third : You're not constantly herded toward the main quest like in SoC : There's no people yelling at you via radio to go there do this and that (until you reach Pripyat of course). In Call of Pripyat you're given your overall objective and then start working your way from there. Then, the much more alive world (Active NPCs, Night/Day cycle and the artifact hunting mechanics) make it feel more like the world doesn't exist there only for you but there are other individuals and groups out there hunting for artifacts and each other. The atmosphere in the Bar and the Rookie village is pretty amazing at first but when you realize that the NPCs don't actually DO anything, they'll just sit there all day all night it removes all the immersion.
Overall my only real gripes with Call of Pripyat were the too easy economy and the fact that there were no randomly patrolling human mobs in the first two levels which prevented the player from taking part in the enjoyable FPS action the game was supposed to provide but that's fixed in most mods and honestly I feel that when I play Call of Pripyat I feel much more like being in the Zone than in Shadow of Chernobyl where I'm constantly aware that I'm playing a videogame,although a really solid game with good atmosphere.
The rather unimpressive visuals were a pity but understandable considering that GSC wanted to make a game that could be actually played by the target demographic because the size of the maps and the A-Life would've made it unnecessarily hard for older machines to run.
Of course it's a matter of preference and I don't mean to belittle your opinions, just wanted to give another take on the matter since I think that CoP is sometimes rather undeservingly hated on here .
Monsters could never migrate in CS and CoP. In SoC they traveled between levels and weren't restricted to only one area, even though some where.
Yeah, that's true. I guess I was too kind of disappointed how Call of Pripyat didn't have stalkers and mutants migrating between levels though it was kind of understandable given the level design. It would have probably been a good compromise to have some kind of smaller "transition" levels between the main areas, maybe underground tunnels or SoC-style a bit more limited areas which could've been also used by NPCs and mutants. Clear Sky sort of swept the mutants to the sidelines, a move which was perhaps controversial and not liked by everyone to accommodate the Faction Wars system which was the main "treat" of the title. The Faction Wars feature was indeed a welcome addition but it came with the high cost of eliminating the A-Life system which made the levels rather predictable and empty if the map wasn't a focus point of Faction Wars.
I'll give you that SoC's absolute strong point was the unexpected movement of the stalkers : a month or so ago I even encountered a group of Mercenaries coming into Cordon from the Northern checkpoint building (not related to the rookie village quest) in Vanilla 1.005, something I haven't seen ever so the A-Life and NPC migrations in SoC are definitely very surprising sometimes and I would hope the possible next iteration of the series to embrace that kind of unexpectedness that keeps things fresh.