S.T.A.L.K.E.R in April 06 or later

This year's a bit congested.

Publisher THQ has confirmed reports that GSC Gameworld's toxic PC first-person shooter S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl will not be released until April 2006 at the earliest.

The game's been delayed a number of times, but THQ wants to give it the best chance possible and clearly sees the idea of pushing it for late 2005 - which is going to be a crowded period, to say the least - as counterproductive.

"We think that's going to be a ground breaking title when we launch it and we want to make sure there's enough time in the oven for it," boss-man Brian Farrell said. "We want to make sure it has the absolute highest possible game quality," he added, rather boringly.

The result is that THQ doesn't expect to ship it in its current (2006) fiscal year, which ends on March 31st.

S.T.A.L.K.E.R, unveiled some years ago, is set in the ruins around Russia's most famous nuclear facility, where lots of mutant nasties have risen to prominence. Visually, it's been looking mighty special whenever we've seen it, but understandably it's starting to look less and less groundbreaking with each passing year. We still have high hopes for it, however; and we'll let you know when we hear something concrete. Something concrete surrounding Chernobyl - there's a novel concept.

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