Time to examine my new suit! I felt kind of weird buying something solely on the promise of another man, but I guess I can trust Nimble with this.
And my trust turned out to be 100% justified. An old Clear Sky suit, this thing will protect me well, and comes with a helmet, that, amusingly, is laid out for a squad commander that is backed by a military operation and can receive data and radio updates directly to his helmet. So, the full opposite of what I am.
After I finished unpacking my early (and 40000 rubel) Chrismtas gift, I ask Kardan to build in additional protection and the usual gadgets. To my astonishment, I learn that both the helmet and the armor can be outfitted with systems that help my physical fitness, thus making me able to run longer and recover faster. The technology of the future, indeed. Bought.
So, back to Jupiter (the first part is called Zaton, the second is called Jupiter)
, and let's have a look at the bandits that Wano owes money.
I was hoping that it was the same bandit camp as the one in which the hostage is held, and that I could gain some information about the layout and the strength of numbers, but apparently there is more than one bandit camp around her.
Not that this isn't well populated.
I make my way to the bandit's leader, Jack, and find that he is an arrogant jerk.
Instead of taking Wanos 5000 and being happy, he says something of interest rates and that it is now 7000. I would have been willing to pay the 5000, Wano has only himself to blame for making business with such shady characters, but this is enpugh. Even when I threaten him, he only laughs. "Who do I want to shoot with my toy gun?" he asks. Simple answer. Him.
So I whip out my gun, and in a quick burst of automaitc fire, I kill his bodyguard first, and then him. Headshot time. Reminds me of my time in the force.
After that, it's only a matter of enough bullets and grenades.
For people who make ntheir living robbing Stalkers at gunpoint and extorting protection money, thay are sure lousy in a fight. Their last mistake.
Wano is very happy and tells me to keep the 5000. Fine with me.
When I just wanted to exit Janow station, I overhear this fat creep Flint bragging about how he made a detailed map of the safest and fastest rout between Zaton and Jupiter, and how he eradicated a whole nest of Bloodsuckers back in Zaton with only his shotgun. I confront him, but he just calls me envious and tells me to get out. I'll have to think of something, since I can't hurt him as long as he stays here. You just wait.
I ask around, and one of the Stalkers tells me that in his opinion, the best place to look for tools would be the Jupiter complex. He also says that the complex is "scary" What isn't? Let's go!
But first, some artifact hunting in an anomaly next to Jupiter, filled with those fire traps. Luckily, they are easy to avoid.
Than there's the conrete bath anomaly, just a few hundred metres further. It seems that some guest are already getting ready for a bath, but I interrupt them.
Something gives me the feeling that I shouldn't fall into the green liquid. Maybe it's the constant hissing of acid, or the beeping of my scanner. So it's time to jump. A good thing that my arnmor is very flexible.
A few hops later, and I'm the proud owner of a Soul artifact, which will fetch some price back at the station.
But a man, they say, has to fight for what's his.
First a horde of Flesh guided by a boar.
Then some bandit target practice for my sniper rifle.
Then a swarm of hamsters coming out of Jupiter. Reminds me of how they said that moments before the first blast at Chernobyl NPP, all the rats and other vermin left the place, frantically trying to get away. Creepy. But not a real threat.
And finally, because everybody loves me, some mutant dogs and a FREAKING Bloodsucker. Both taste shotgun. Man, THAT was strange.
But let's head to my real objective here.
Through the dawning night, I approach Jupiter complex, looming in the gathering darkness like only derelict buildings can.
Some more dogs try to show me that radioactive evolution is the thing to come, but my armour proves to be almost unpenetrable. For teeth, that is.
Maybe it's better to start with the smaller building first.
Night has now fallen, and I am left with the pitch black corridors. Look around!
I don't find any tools, but instead I find a list of orders saying that the scientific personel is to be moved into underground bunkers with all their equipment. It doesn't mention where, sadly.
In another room, I find another document that also tells of secret labs and secret projects. This must have been a very important research facility once.
As it turns out, a bunch of mercenaries have been following me, and something tells me they are not to pleased about me discovering the documents. The leader telling me I should have never come here might be a reason. Also, I hear the heavey footsteps of an exoskeleton. This is going to be tough.
I get the first one when he sticks his head through the door. Fool.
The second one falls victim to my headshots. Take THAT, powered armor.
5 to go.
Here goes number three.
And four. The rest must be downstairs.
Those fools never see me in the darkness, and a grenade amidst them proves their undoing.
Their leader, Black, has a PDA containing interesting data. He tells his men to "guard" the mobile lab here in Jupiter and make sure the scientists never discover how to handle X-objects. Thinmgs just keep getting more mysterious, but I bet that whatever those X-objects are, they have something to do with the research from Jupiter complex.
But now it is almost time to meet with my friends and assault the bandit camp. Somehow (and I really don't want to know how) Grizzly got a team of ex-police Stalkers (if they knew) and I am to meet them at 0100 in the night near the old container yard.
Nightvision has already paid more than full. The camp is swarming with bandits, and all in all, we are jsut five men. I hope they are as good as they have to be for this.
I wait for them near the car (but not too close, apparently the Ukrainians used the same cars used in Fallout 3, as most of them radiate furiously)
Here's a picture I took because somebody mentioned the beauty of the sky. Even under nightvision, the starlit skies have a strange beauty.
The troops arrive, and after taking out the guard, we assault the camp through rain, lightning and darkness.
Sadly, the enemies seem to be able to ignore bushes more or less, while I can see next to nothing.
I use the lightning to take aim, and the next lightning to see if anyone still stands.
And before long, the corpses of the bandits litter the floor. This reminds me of my days in the force. Especially of the midnight crackdowns we used to train and execute. Never thought I could use the experience in a place like this.
A few more bodies, and I stand beofre the captor himself. Guess it's jsut not my night. He starts the old "one step closer"-speech, but a couple of rounds quickly silence him. Loser. It pays to be quick on the draw.
Together with Mitaj, the hostage, I make my way out of here. I never saw any of the other members of my team again, so i fear they bit the bullet. I feel somewhat sorry for them, as they were good men. But this is the Zone, after all. I hope somebody finds the bodies and gives them a proper burial, like those eerie crosses adorned with gasm masks that you sometimes find in the wilderness.
After collecting my reward (a few stash coordinates and 5000 rubel), it's time to let the eggheads know of the danger they're in. But amusingly, they tell me that the guards have vanished overnight, and I offer my help in finding trusty new ones. I also hand them the files I found in Jupiter, and even though he tells me that they contain little interestingm, he hands me a few scientific med-kits and 7000 rubel. Guess they have too much money on their hands, yes?
I just want to elave, but Hermann holds me back. There's a job he likes me to do. They have encountered a pusing psy-field, and think that something may be causing it, and ask me to find a sample. If there is any, and if I can actually SEE it, that is. Another doctor tells me that I am very resilient and highly unlikely to become unconscious because of such a field. That's helping.
I am supposed to go and recover the sample, while Topol and his men stand guard outside the tunnel. What could go wrong?
So far, nothing. Only a few Zombies greet us with strange mumbling, but are quickly put down. I still don't fully understand the relation between Zombies and psy-emissions, but there certainly is one. I hope I won't find out the hard way.
Topol waits outside, and I take some psy blockers, better safe than sorry. Let's get in there.
Past a locked door into a room filled with strange phenomena and electrical anomalies.
The detector shows me a nearby artifacts, maybe this is what i'm looking for.
It is indeed. Deftly I climb and sneak past the anomalies and find a warped isolator. Taken. I want out of here, my head is hurting.
But when I open the door I went past, I find Topol on his knees, clutching his head. Controller! That beast has rendered my comrades helpless. Shotgun time, freak, I'll not lose more men.
By quickly sprinting to where I hear him shambling, I manage to surprise the beast. He hits me with a fe attacks, but I hit him with shotgun shells, and I prove to be the hardest of us two.
If you wait long enough, your comrades will rise as Zombies and start to attack you. So THIS is how Zombbie is formed
Back in the lab, Hermann thanks me, and quickly offers me another job. He thinks he can predict upcoming emissions by measuring the quaility and quantity of artifacts that appear after one. To get the data necesasry, he asks me to take three sensors and place them inside three anomalies. Combining treasure hunting with scientific research? I'm in!