GAMES: The release of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 is delayed until December 8.

Fans will have to wait sev­er­al more months than expect­ed to get their hands on the lat­est game in the series. Devel­op­er GSC Game World has pushed back S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Cher­nobyl which was sched­uled to release April 28 through Decem­ber 8.

“These addi­tion­al sev­en months of devel­op­ment are nec­es­sary to real­ize our vision and achieve the desired state of the game,” GSC Game World wrote in a state­ment. “S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 is the largest project in GSC his­to­ry and it requires exten­sive test­ing and pol­ish­ing.” Maybe it takes a lit­tle longer to get the char­ac­ters teeth right.

The stu­dio not­ed that while the deci­sion to delay the sur­vival hor­ror game was not an easy one, it believes that “devel­op­ment should take as long as need­ed, espe­cial­ly with such a project.” He plans to pro­vide more details on S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 in the com­ing months.

The first-per­son shoot­er, which will be the series’ first entry since 2009, will ini­tial­ly be avail­able on Xbox Series X / S and PC — it will debut on Xbox Game Pass. Reports sug­gest Microsoft has a three-month exclu­siv­i­ty win­dow for S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2.

GSC Game World was recent­ly crit­i­cized for its plans to include NFTs (non-fun­gi­ble tokens) in the game. A day lat­er, the stu­dio said it would “roll back every­thing relat­ed to NFT in STALKER 2” at the fol­low­ing a major backlash.

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