After sharing an initial in-engine screenshot from S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 back in March, developer GSC Game World showed off the first official trailer of its upcoming title at the Xbox Games Showcase today.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. itself as a franchise, for those who aren't familiar, takes place inside an alternate history version of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. While in real life there was just one nuclear disaster in the area in 1986, the game series takes place in a world in which yet another disaster has taken place, therefore creating the Zone.
The sequel aims to make the Zone an entirely explorable open world, "one of the biggest ones to date", and a first for the series. The brains behind the entirety of what's taking place within the Zone, A-Life, has gotten an upgrade too. As per GSC Game World itself:
The reimagined version of this system, which we call A-Life 2.0, will control the state of the world and the behavior of characters and mutants, making the Zone ever-changing and truly alive. Countless events and encounters will happen every moment — even if you are not around to witness them with your own eyes.
Unlike the previous entries, which were built on the X-Ray Engine, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 is built in the Unreal Engine and is set to be not only GSC Game World's biggest game to date, but also the first in the series to appear on the console.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 is coming to PC and Xbox Series X, and will be a console launch exclusive for Microsoft's next-generation hardware. It will also hit Xbox Game Pass on day one, though no release date has been shown. The various cyphers which led to the discovery of the game hinted at a 2021 release, though the company hasn't committed to one just yet.