The team behind the STALKER-inspired Survarium show off one of the game’s levels and talk a bit about the technical challenges of making an online shooter.

Let’s not kid ourselves: Survarium is a free-to-play, online version of STALKER. In development at Vostok Games, a Ukrainian studio formed in the wake of the collapse of GSC Game World, Survarium looks, sounds and very likely plays like STALKER, except that instead of an exclusively single-player experience, it’s exclusively multiplayer.

Players will begin the game as a “scavenger,” poorly armed and armored and forced to congregate in the relative safety of camps in order to survive. Assuming they survive, they’ll acquire better and more powerful equipment and the skills to use them effectively, but since they can’t produce that equipment themselves, bartering becomes vital. Into that mix comes the valuable “artifacts” that provide temporary boosts of various sorts. Scavengers excel at finding artifacts, which can help compensate for the fact that they aren’t great fighters.

The developers talk about some of the technical aspects of the game, how they’ll address issues of cheating and that sort of thing, but the video is interesting mainly for the look it provides at the game’s environment. The world on display could very well be from a STALKER game. Makes me a little sad that it isn’t.

The PC-exclusive Survarium is currently expected to come out at the end of 2013.

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