Pocket Gamer writes:
"Unfortunately, the combat is simply too repetitive to do everything else justice. You can collect more powerful weapons, and sometimes it's necessary to equip an anti-radiation complex to protect you from puddles of luminous green gunk, but these don't do much to relieve the jack-in-a-box drudgery of waiting for enemies to pop their heads over the various boxes and upturned tables they're hiding behind.
The fact that you can't take cover also wounds S.T.A.L.K.E.R. It's literally impossible to avoid taking hits, so much of the combat entails memorising the order in which enemies pop up and gulping down medikits to stave off death, which is hardly satisfying. Or sophisticated.
S.T.A.L.K.E.R is a hugely ambitious game, but its gameplay lets it down. Clearly we can't recommend it unreservedly, but it's also too interesting to overlook. We want you to play it, in other words, as long as you don't blame us when you don't have very much fun."