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Stalker 2 Developer Claims That Russian Hackers Are Attempting To Blackmail It

Stalker 2: Heart of Chornobyl studio GSC Game World has claimed that it has suffered repeated attacks from Russian hackers, with the most recent incident resulting in several of its assets being held hostage as an act of “blackmail and intimidation,” according to the Ukranian developer. The studio is refusing to give in to the demands of the hackers and is now asking fans to ignore any leaked images or data that could potentially leak before the release of Stalker 2.

“Recently, our employee’s account for a collective work-with-images application was hacked,” the studio explained in a public statement. “The responsibility for this was claimed by a community from a Russian social network. They are threatening to use the obtained data for blackmail and intimidation. This is not the first attempt to hack and leak our data, including personal information. We have been enduring constant cyber-attacks for more than a year now. We have faced blackmail, acts of aggression, hacks, attempts to hurt players and fans, and efforts to damage the development process or the reputation of our company.”

A message from GSC Game World team

— S.T.A.L.K.E.R. OFFICIAL (@stalker_thegame) March 12, 2023

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last year, GSC Game World partially relocated from Kiev to a new location in the Czech Republic and saw the website for its game blocked in Russia. The developer began documenting the impact of the war on the development of Stalker 2–which was delayed from April 2022 to 2023–as well as the very real human cost of the conflict on Ukraine.

While a concrete release date for Stalker 2 has yet to be confirmed, fellow Ukranian developer Frogwares will release Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened on April 11. Thanks in part to cash provided by Epic Games, Frogwares was able to relocate its staff last year to safer areas of Ukraine and Europe.

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