Get out of here, Stalker! Just joking friends, come in and enjoy my constantly growing profile. This is the list of the games I play: S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series (favourite), Far Cry series (also one of my favourites), Crysis games (nice graphics), Assassin's Creed series (#1 games when it comes to atmosphere and history), GTA (especially San Andreas), Borderlands 1&2. Oh, and I'm addicted to World of Tanks right now... Feel free to comment my images!

Blog RSS Feed Report abuse S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: The Factions Pt. 2

5 comments by loner85 on Aug 8th, 2014

THE FREEDOM-FACTION

The freedomers are one of the big organized factions in the Zone, they have one main base and a loose hierarchy. They don't have military ranks, but different specializations, like one being a trained sniper, one being a defender with heavier armor and powerful close-to-mid distance weapons like fast-firing assault rifles (M-16 derivative LR-300 being one of it), and all-rounders (ranking from experienced to experts, while the latter wears lightened Exoskeletons and balanced weaponry). There also are scouts, recognizable by their rather light armor and light weaponry (MP-5).
They are not your typical hippie, as they can be very strictly structurized and organized at war operations (guerilla tactics are common here, as well as big-front combat), but if in peace times they also relax (light drugs are common here), and many additionally do scientific research to further study the zone and its miracles.

AIMS: Primary aim of the freedom faction is to open the zone to everybody on this world.
As long as the dutiers are still in the Zone, these have a priority, as they will be shot on sight.
Basically, they have an anarchy-like philosophy and hate any government deeply. To mark a territory as used by freedom they use the "Anarchy Symbol", as seen in the Dark Valley base.
They push to the center of the zone mostly because they want to be there before the dutiers arrive, and to find out more about the Zone.

BASE: Their main base is in a former military fortification, the Army Warehouses (south of the Radar and north of the Wild Territory). A freedom squad led by mercenary Scar wiped out the remains of the military soldiers that were left there and captured it, using it as their new base of operations. After claiming that new base, they abandoned their old one in Dark Valley.
The HQ is one of the most heavily defended areas in the entire game, just like the duty base in the Wild Territory, impenetrable by anything but explosives, which you can find only rarely...and those who try to invade are getting shot by the snipers located everywhere scattered across the base area.

GEAR: As above-mentioned, they tend to have good gear right from the start. The worst gear a freedomer can carry is a light suit combined with a rather underperforming MP (though these guys have different tactical usage anyway, they are more used as fast reconaissance units).
The regular freedom soldier wears a camouflaged, up-armored and anomaly-specialized sunrise suit, an AKS-74 (based on experience they also use the LR-300 and many other NATO-weapons as well) and better anomaly gear (improved detectors for example).
A common sniper uses the same suit as a regular soldier (or even a camouflaged Berill-suit, but only few legends carry that one) and the legendary SVD (legends use the not-so-legendary SVU, which basically is the new bullpup configuration of the SV Dragunov). Dammit, so much "legendary" in one sentence. That's legendary.

Fight tips: Don't dare to fight them alone from a distance and unprepared, as their sharpshooters can annihilate you pretty easily from distances of 200m+. If encountering a single squad, attack quick and always with good cover. Heavy armor is recommended.

Main opponents are the dutiers due to their completely different philosophies. Player relation is neutral, and if joining duty, it obviously get's hostile.

THE DUTY FACTION

The duty faction. Encountering even one of them can be your certain death if you don't watch out. They are always on alert, have heavier armors than you and use heavy-hitting weapons.
Sadly they don't know too much about the zone, as basically all members are former soldiers serving at one of the military outpost and the borders of the zone, and they wish to destroy the zone, which isn't possible by any means. All of the members hate zone deeply and view themselves as kind of "the last defense line of humanity against the Zone". That's somehow true, their equipment is specialized in mutant killing and fighting other (human) opponents.
Their structure is similar to the russian/ukrainian military with the same ranks.
It isn't uncommon that Loners are getting their a**es saved by duty squads.

AIMS: They want to destroy the Zone and anything that lives within, that's their reason to push towards the center of the Zone.

BASE: Their main base is on shared territory with the Loners, on the Eastern side of the Wild Territory, also called "The Bar", because the 100 Rads Bar is basically the one thing Loners risk their life for in the Garbitch area. Many players are misleaded by the information that the entire Bar is controlled by dutiers, which is untrue; only a relatively small part belongs to the dutiers themselves. Because of their hero-like protection they are more than accepted in the Loner side of the Bar though.
The actual base is a nice little place coming close to the atmosphere of the Bar, warm lighting welcomes members (and only members or close allies) to the underground the base is located in. They also have a trader.

GEAR: Unlike the freedom, the dutiers don't use camouflage at all, instead, they WANT to be seen, thats why their suit colors are black and - red.
The gear is consisting of russian AK's and their derivatives, like the AN-94 and the PK-MG. These weapons are heavier than their freedom counterparts, making them unsuitable for ambushing. Another fact that makes ambushing hard is the non-existant camouflage and their heavy armor, even at lower tiers. The squad is very vulnerable to ambush (guerilla tactics) because of this.

The main suit is a heavily up-armored Sunrise suit specialized in carrying much fighting gear and ammos, but no protection to anomalies. The soldier belonging to the suit wields an AKS-74 or AK-SU.

The veteran suit is a Bulat-like suit, having similar super-heavy armor capable to withstand assault rifles. The soldier carrying it uses an AN-94, an improved version of the AK-74.

The expert variant appears more often than freedom experts, and they wear the feared exo-suit with even improved armor (taking away all of its usefullness in anomalies) along with the also very feared PKM, an MG that fires hard-hitting 7,62mm bullets. It basically is your death at any ranges up to 100m.

Fight tips: The only option on how to reliably take on a duty squad is the long-distance fighting. The duty weapons may be in better condition than yours, but the AK-accuracy is still poor, so you definitely can snipe 5 dutiers in 10 seconds if they also have no cover as well. Time your attack, that is very important and one of the reasons why Freedom uses guerilla tactics while engaging Duty.

Ambush is also an option, but only if you wear a heavy freedom suit and use a fast-firing gun (preferably the G36 at 80-100 m). And if they have concentrated fire on you, you are dead.

Their main opponents are the freedomers, same reason as above.


To be continued, next two factions will be more unknown and operate mostly in the background...

Report abuse S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: The Factions Pt. 1

4 comments by loner85 on Aug 7th, 2014

Hey, fellow STALKERs, it's the loner85 again!

This time I wanted to do a little tutorial about Factions in the game and their members, focusing on their various strenghts and weaknesses (I'll take SoC as base for all what I write here, because CS is too early and CoP only plays in the center of the Zone).

Just before all the questions start, sure, my main source is the STALKER Wiki: Stalker.wikia.com

But my personal experiences will also play a role. I'll also try to give one or two tips on how to approach a faction's outpost if hostile.

Let's start with the two most widespread and common factions, which of course would be the neutral 'Loners' and hostile 'Bandits'.

THE LONERS
The common neutral Loner is likely belonging to a small group of other loners, because it is too dangerous to go alone. They share their loot and the money they get from the traders. The common neutral Loner doesn't have military background, and if they have, they are still far from "trained". Yet they make up for that with knowledge of the zone, and many loner groups have a legendary reputation.

AIMS: They only want to make profit, but in a way that doesn't disturb the zone and themselves. So no real loner is killing for profit alone, there is always a reason, otherwise we'd call them "mercenaries".
The Clear Sky faction is perhaps one of the friendliest to the loners, due to their more peaceful attitude, although they don't meet often in the Swamps.

BASES: Scattered around the Zone, the Loner groups are more found in small encampments made by themselves, which they use as base of all their travels through the zone. There are not many big loner bases in the Zone, more notably is the Rookie Village in the Cordon, where the beginners meet and make their first steps into the zone. Second, and the perhaps most important base is the 100 Rads Bar in the Wild Territory.

GEAR:
Rookies: Normal jacket/ Makarov pistol, sawn-off shotgun
Experienced: Sunrise Suit/ AKS-74, AK-SU (sometimes better weapons, in the Agroprom area in CS they also wield VSS or LR-300's)
Veterans: SEVA protective suit/ various guns ranging from AK-SU to AS Val
Experts: Exoskeleton/ VSS, AS Val, SPAS-12, FN-2000 Bullpup

Main opponents are Bandits. Their relation to the players is neutral in all three games, so expect neither bullets nor kisses while approaching them.

Fight tips: None, get out of here...dude.
If you are bad enough to get your own faction hostile to you...

BANDITS
They represent the criminal side of the Zone. Nothing much to say about them, name is self-explaining. Yet they can be found in surprising places, like dangerous undergrounds and such.

AIMS: They only want to make profit...well, similar to the Loners, but in a way that is far more brutal and they tend to murder Loners just for their gear and sometimes only out of pure fun. Basically they also represent the closest a human being can get to a mutant.

BASES: They also tend to be in groups, but in larger ones than the loners so these are always outnumbered. The biggest group of Bandits resides in the Dark Valley, in that old factory the freedomers once have used as base for their operations.
With this base, the bandits also gained the control over the Garbage area, turning the latter into "Garbitch".

GEAR:
Rookie: Bandit Jacket/ Makarov pistol, sawn-off shotgun, in rare cases even MP-5s
Experienced-Master: Trench coats (black or brown), every kind of gun ranging from AKs to LR-300s

Their main opponents are the Loners. The relation to the player is actually hostile, but in CS it's more like "orange". You can join them, but upon approaching the first outpost in the Garbage area they will rob you. In CoP they are neutral and you can talk to them.

Fight Tips: Use a fast-firing gun, in the earlier story an MP-5 always suffices, as Bandits are (lacking armor) soft targets. Also, you should wear some armor, light one already would do the trick (Merc suit or Sunrise Suit are already enough, simple jacket isn't sadly, always try to get a good suit right from the start).
Also vulnerable to long-range attacks. You should avoid very close distances though if no armor available, as they have powerful sawed-off shotguns as well.

The next two are real factions now. Guess which? :D

To be continued!

Report abuse S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Modding - Understanding the modding system

0 comments by loner85 on Dec 7th, 2013

Hello, it's me again :D Many "new" STALKER gamers are maybe wondering how the modding system in STALKER actually works and how it differs to other game modding.

First, you unpack the default main database, which is stored in the gamedata.db0 - .dbc files in the main directory of the game, to make every data visible. If you want to alter something in these extracted files, you have to make a gamedata folder in the main directory and put every altered file in that folder to make the game use it in the way you changed them. So, basically, the gamedata is NOT the whole game itself, it JUST contains the modded files.
Deleting for example the "characters_voice" folder in "scenario" will make the game use the default dialogues again.

STALKER modding differs in some ways to "normal" modding. In normal modding you alter the game files itself, so a loss or a f*cked-up file would be game-breaking. In STALKER modding, you create an altered "copy" of the desired file which the game uses then, and if that "copy" gets deleted, the game will use the default "normal" data.

It's very complicated to understand, but very simple to remember once you got through it :D

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Shadow of Chernobyl database unpacker: Moddb.com

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky AND Call of Pripyat database unpacker: Stalker.filefront.com

If you have any further questions or want to correct something, just use the comments section!

Cheers,

loner85

Report abuse Misery 2.0 - Survive!

19 comments by loner85 on Jul 31st, 2013

Hey, guys, loner here.
I'd like to say a few things to this new mod, yea, you may know it: Misery 2.0. It finally happened!
But many people are not even getting past the first mutant pack welcoming them to the Zone. So I, as a zone veteran, will give you rookies some tips for how to survive in this Misery.

  • FIRST LESSON: LEARN YOUR AMMUNITION

Pistol ammo: Used for pistols, machine pistols and submachine guns. Little to not armor-penetrating, the benefit is the high hit impulse at armored targets.
Provides good damage against little to non-armored targets like mutants and bandits as well as rookie STALKERs.
Not effective against armored targets, only to keep them at a distance.

Rifle ammo: Used for hunting rifles (12x76mm variant), assault rifles, carbines and sniper rifles. Medium to high armor penetration.

Shotgun ammo: Used for shotguns...that was easy, right? Superior to pistol ammo in close-quarter. That again means that buckshot is most effective against mutants...or some dumbass bandits. Not armor-penetrating at all, but nice to keep enemies at a distance and/or hurting them. ONLY for close range, you can forget everything above 30m.
Special tip: Carry at least ONE gun with you which uses pistol bullets (or buckshot), as a secondary weapon against all un-armored surprise. As a primary weapon you should use a rifle-bullet using gun for armored targets.


  • SECOND LESSON: SURROUNDINGS

Always keep an eye on your surroundings, make use of everything you can find. Place stashes intelligently if you know you might have to flee fast, or if you have too much mutant parts to sell.
GOLDEN RULE: If it's hostile, you kill it. Be it a loner, be it a mutant. If you can't avoid it, you eiter flee or fight, depending on your current state of ammo.
Special tip: Start the game as a sniper. You will need the scope and the long-range tactics, and the overall balanced stats.


  • THIRD AND LAST LESSON: TACTICS

As above mentioned, an important element is placing stashes on the right spots. For example, if you want to approach enemy territory, then you'd better make a stash where you put in some medical items and a shotgun/pistol. If you flee then (what you WILL do), you just collect the goods you stashed and continue your way back to your main base.
Very important is the use of weapons in a fight: If you are going to fight in buildings it is more recommended to use a fast-firing carbine or SMG than a sniper rifle. If you are fighting on longer ranges a sniper rifle (semi-automatic) is recommended. If you are just strolling around (that you actually shouldn't do, you should have an objective) a pistol/sniper combo is recommended (bolt-action sniper, more reliable than others and you won't need to fire fast and much if you spot your target early).


Loner over and out,

Cheers

PS: Stop whining, b*tches. Misery 2.0 is hardcore, get used to it. With a little common sense you get through this misery!


Report abuse Crysis 3

0 comments by loner85 on Feb 23rd, 2013

Finally got Crysis 3, so I will write a little sp review :)

The first minutes of the game were kinda...laggy, so I reduced the graphical options to "high". Unlike Crysis 2, you have more options to play with, providing an more individual setting perfectly fitting your rig. After that, I could start the real game. First impression: The CryEngine 3 is doing perfect work, lightning and atmosphere are very impressive. After that I realised that Crysis is now more about stealth actions, sneaking past enemies. So, after spending the first minutes mostly in the stealth mode, I got in the first real combat: I got detected. In the fight I had to quickly get used to the weapon handling, which is a bit unbalanced. Well, after these thrilling first five minutes of the game, all I can say: Outstanding graphics, more personal settings, impressive atmosphere (not that post-apocalyptic like in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. but almost comparable) and a unbalanced weapon handling as a con.

Rating: 8.5/10

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