I attempted to play ‘S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl,’ a #BacklogSunday re-cap.

And I never found out what S.T.A.L.K.E.R. stood for.

I am fascinated by Chernobyl, or rather, the 1986 Chernobyl Disaster. It may seem morbid, considering the lives lost and the misery that accident caused to the areas surrounding the power plant. It’s an interesting story. What interests me even more is the current state of the area around the Chernobyl power plant. There’s nowhere in the world I want to visit more than this ruined, desolate place. One day, I will. Radiation be damned!

Stalker

So when choosing a game for last night’s Backlog Sunday, ‘S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl’ seemed like a good choice. Loading the disc and installing the game sure brought back fond memories; I haven’t actually played a disc-based game on my PC in a while. I got it installed and patched, and it was ready to play.

And then the problems started. The audio was messed up, the dialogue was clipped and sometimes overlapping (same character speaking over himself). I persisted, restarting the game and trying again. Got better, but only for a bit. Then the game froze during my first combat encounter. As much as I love videogames, there’s just no place in my life for that kind of aggravation.

It does illustrate some of the problems PC gamers face. PC gaming doesn’t always offer the insert-disc-and-play experience that console gaming does. It can require some tinkering and problem-solving. Or maybe just a bit of Googling. It’s always been like that. Remember having to download patches for games over a 56K dial-up modem? Good times. Even modern games can take a bit of brain-sweat to get going, but I seem to consistently have problems getting older games to run on newer hardware. It’s all part of the fun, though. Up to a point.

Next week, another game from my backlog, 7pm-ish on Twitter.

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