When a needlessly cryptic countdown appears on a website built to promote a specific title, we naturally assume that it's counting down to a release date. But without an official confirmation, we're a bit hesitant to call the clock currently running on the S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl website a release countdown. We've been scorned before, baby. We know your dirty little tricks.

Originally announced in 2001, GSC Game World's S.T.A.L.K.E.R has been the recipient of many a vaporware award throughout its illustrious career of back burning. Having consulted the Joystiq abacus, we have determined that the countdown ends on March 22nd, 2007. What will happen exactly is up in the air. It could be a release date, or possibly even a demo of the game. It could even be an announcement of an announcement! S.T.A.L.K.E.R to be retooled into a Daikatana expansion pack confirmed!

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

Peter Moore tells reporter not to play Gears of War