|“|| We thank you, oh Monolith, for revealing the cunning plans of your enemies to us.|
May your light shine down on the souls of the brave soldiers who gave their lives in service to your will.
Onward warriors of the Monolith, avenge your fallen brothers, blessed as they are in their eternal union with the Monolith.
Bring death to those who spurned the holy power of the Monolith
Oh Monolith, we do not hear you, why have you left us, oh Monolith? We await your orders, oh Monolith.
- Monolith Preacher
The Monolith is a religious cult, hostile to all but their own, which serves as a major antagonistic group, appearing in S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat and appears in a quasi-supporting role in S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky.
|“|| This group displays many features of a religious sect. Its members believe in the existence of a complex alien crystal, the Monolith, located somewhere in the center of the Zone. Most stalkers treat Monolith adepts with contempt and consider them as lunatics. From its inception the group strives to block all progress towards the center of the Zone, protecting the Monolith from other stalkers. Rumor has it that the group has a large base deep in the Zone, but its exact location is known only by the members.|
- Shadow of Chernobyl PDA description
A religious cult that is hostile to all but their own, the Monolithians believe in the power of the Wish Granter, rumored to be an alien artifact hidden in the center of the Zone. Members of this faction devote their lives to protecting the secret of the Great Crystal, ensuring that no one ever reaches the center of the Zone.
A typical Monolithian is a former stalker brainwashed by one of the psychic emitters throughout the Zone (namely the Brain Scorcher) into serving the will of the C-Consciousness, unflinchingly loyal and ready to sacrifice himself at a moment's notice. This extreme loyalty is achieved by creating intense religious fanaticism in the mind of the stalker, directed towards the Monolith.
While physically, they are on par with other stalkers, their religious fervor sets them apart and allows them to ignore wounds and continue to fight, even after they run out of ammo. Stories abound of fanatical Monolith Stalkers, after running out of ammo, ditch their weapons and attempt to kill the enemy with their bare hands, no matter how grievous their wounds . This same fervor also prevents others from capturing a Monolith member – if taken into custody, he will commit suicide in any way possible (even by smashing his head against the wall).
The Monolith can also uplink themselves to the C-Consciousness through something known as a Monolith statue, a radar antenna covered with garbage to form a statue. Monolithians kneel in front of it and enter a trance involving head nodding and swaying, and will ignore almost anything around them, even gunshots. The Monolith Fighter and, rarely, idle Monolith Stalkers can be found in the same trance, but without the use of the Statue, possibly attempting to call upon the Monolith for guidance.
Effects of mind controlEdit
Unfortunately, the same mind control that makes them fierce warriors also erodes their humanity. Strider and the Preacher both exhibit a completely flat personality and suffer from a monotone speech impediment, and Strider himself has a poor grasp of language. Other rogue Monolithians under Strider's command have difficulty communicating and tend to speak in halting, jerky sentences (although this is no longer the case once recruited). However the case of Strelok, who fully retained his personality and speech abilities even after being brainwashed by the Monolith might imply that Monolith soldiers do not instantly lose their humanity on the spot, but slowly as the Monolith continues to control them, or that Strelok wasn't brainwashed as completely to better blend into the rest of the stalker population and to be able to use his wits (which the Monolith soldiers seem to lose partially) to better fulfill his assassin role.
It is interesting to note that all Monolith stalkers are immune to the zombifying effects of Psi-Emitters, like the Brain Scorcher, and still retain their combat skills. In addition, in Call of Pripyat, they are immune to emissions, even though they will still get to cover when one occurs.
In Call of Pripyat, Monolith Stalkers gain a new, unknown voice actor. Monolithian speech is revealed to be highly ritualised, referring to each other as "Brother", and relating most situations to the Monolith. Upon sighting an enemy, they remark to their Brothers about the presence of an "enemy of the Monolith", and do much the same upon killing them. Any idle talk revolves around the Monolith, and is as disjointed and monotone as English-speaking Monolithians.
The Monolith clan was originally a group of stalkers, united by their fascination with the Zone. Fascination turned to obsession and obsession turned to fanaticism; eventually, the stalkers became convinced that there is a massive artifact in the center of the Zone, a Monolith, and declared themselves its protectors, growing increasingly hostile to other stalkers. 
They disappeared in 2011, just before beginning of Clear Sky, simply picking up all of their belongings and marching through the Barrier towards the Brain Scorcher, shortly before an emission. No one has heard from them since... or so they thought, as later in 2011, very aggressive stalkers began storming the Barrier.
Fact is, they had been "recruited" as the guardians of the C-Consciousness to repel stalkers, since they (namely Strelok's Group) have and will find ways to reach the center of the zone. They are vastly superior guards than the Mutants or Zombified Stalkers since they retain most of their humanity, although they are completely under the control of the C-Consciousness and will gratefully give their lives without question.
Their rank system and organization are almost completely unknown. What is known is that the Monolith is led by a single leader (Charon in 2012), while combat operations are overseen in the field by Preachers, who snipe from atop buildings while chanting phrases out to inspire their men and demoralize the enemy. Both the leader and Preachers take their orders directly from the C-Consciousness.
Cut game data points to two units known as the Left and Right hands of the Monolith, armed with FT-200M rifles and Black Kite pistols. These may have been ranks, honorifics or titles among the Monolithians.
Further cut data shows an individual called the "Komandir", another Monolithian leader, separate from Charon, with his own model and equipped with a Gauss rifle and a Black Kite. Cut Monolith units also include fighters called "Regulars" and "Specnaz", of which there were several equipment variants.
It is suggested in dialogue with Clear Sky members in Limansk that the Monolith faction is extremely well equipped and have large numbers of individual compared to the other factions, putting them on level-footing with the Clear Sky faction. They use equipment developed by C-Consciousness or those acquired from the obliterated Clear Sky faction.
They use self-made armors such as the Monolith suit, the Scientific Monolith suit, along with a variant of the Radiation suit and the Exoskeleton. As evidenced in Shadow of Chernobyl, these armors are superior to the gear used by other stalkers from the Duty, Freedom and the Loners faction.
The Monolith throughout the series make use of nearly every weapon available. This goes from common weaponry issued to rookies, to uncommon and high-end weaponry including the rare FT-200M that only Mercenaries, Clear Sky, and some Loners have access to. Finally, they produced the deadly Gauss gun and are the only known user (besides the player) of this unique weapon.
It is unknown where Monoliths get their equipment from, although Kirillov suggests they have some agents who deal in smuggling with corrupt Military members.. As seen with the Gauss gun, it can be assumed the faction either has an unknown supplier or utilizes experienced engineers with access to old labs and/or workshops that manufactured it themselves, without anybody else notice it.
- ^a Only in Shadow of Chernobyl and Call of Pripyat.
- ^b Shadow of Chernobyl.
- ^c Only in Clear Sky and Call of Pripyat.
- ^d Only in Shadow of Chernobyl and Clear Sky
- ^e Only in Clear Sky
- Monolith suit – Heavily modified stalker suit, more resembling a Wind of Freedom suit, usually worn with a Gas mask. Features more armor, more anomaly protection, and more radiation protection than the Sunrise suit. Only available to the player in Shadow of Chernobyl.
- Scientific Monolith suit – A Monolith suit with a Curtain helmet. Offers higher bullet/splinter protection than the SEVA Suit and the PSZ-9Md Universal Protection suit. Never available to the player without mods.
- Monolith Exoskeleton – An Exoskeleton painted white with grey and dull green, with urban camouflaged fatigues. The Monolith Exoskeleton is commonly issued to Veteran and Expert members. Not available to the player.
- Radiation suit – The armor portion of the Exoskeleton, worn without the external mechanical components. Only used in Clear Sky and Call of Pripyat, and not available to the player.
Live Monolith can be first encountered in the Army Warehouses, near a crashed Mi-24 Hind helicopter west of The Barrier. They are well equiped (all use Radsuits and SA Avalanches) and surrounded by a Psi Field which does heavy Psi damage when entered. The Monolith are uneffected by the Psi disruption and can be difficult to take care of due to the lack of cover. Other Monolithians can be found at the Barrier and will regularly launch attacks on the Loners, Dutyers or Freedomers that guard the barrier. It is not possible to engage them at close range, as they are protected by the Brain Scorcher's psychic emissions that will kill the player instantly if they stay too deep in the Barrier for too long.
In the final stages of Clear Sky, the primary opposition is the Monolith faction itself, having repelled all of the other factions attempting to break into the Zone center. They can be found in Limansk, the Limansk Hospital and the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, and serve as the main opposition for the rest of the game. It is here that it's first suggested (chronologically) that Monolith bolsters its numbers through the use of emissions, and later, via the Brain Scorcher. The ending shows the survivors of Clear Sky's raid being brainwashed via television screens, including Strelok and likely Scar as well.
Interestingly, what appears to be the corpses of dead Monolith soldiers can be found in various areas such as the Swamps and the Cordon.
In Clear Sky, the Monolith faction has only three territories under its control; the Chernobyl NPP itself, the northern portion of Limansk, and most of the abandoned hospital where you progress to after Limansk. They become the main opposition to the player during the final portion of the game, but are relatively rare outside of these areas, appearing only in small groups in such areas as the Army Warehouses.
Shadow of ChernobylEditBy 2012, the Monolith faction is considered to be the most powerful faction in the Zone by far, easily as numerous as the armies of Duty and Freedom, with advanced technology that not even the Military possesses. Their army is large enough to be military theater sized as they regularly launch raids from the center of the Zone, attacking the Freedom Barrier with forces consisting of occasionally 20 men, a relatively expensive strategy in the sparsely populated Zone. Their grip has extended from beyond the NPP, and they have established a headquarters in Pripyat, led by a figurehead known as Charon.
In all likelihood, the vast majority of the Monolith faction's troops are in fact former Clear Sky members, as well as Duty, Freedom, Military, and Loners who supposedly lost their lives in the Second and Third emissions.
Monolith appears first in the Army Warehouses area, where a platoon sized force of Monolithians launch an attack upon the Freedom barricade. Afterwards, they take the role as the primary opposition once again, often deploying en masse to block Strelok from making any further progress. By this time they've established numerous checkpoints within the Red Forest and garrison the Brain Scorcher, having established a strong, well-fortified position within Pripyat. Elite units regularly patrol the city, and at the same time still more Monolithians protect Chernobyl NPP itself, along with the Sarcophagus.
Call of PripyatEdit
By 3 months after the Brain Scorcher was disabled, the Monolith is slowly losing power – most of Monolith's outlying forces have either been destroyed, or gained freedom from the influence of C-Consciousness. One such squad, led by Strider, can be encountered by the player, and recruited into one of the other factions – supposedly a first in the history of the Zone. However, the remaining fanatics are still enough of a threat to decimate the survivors of Operation Fairway.
Live Monolithians can be encountered in Yanov as part of Strider's group. These are neutral to the player and Strider offers a quest that requires them to speak to either Shulga or Loki to have the survivors recruited into either Duty and Freedom, respectively.
They first make their appearance as enemies inside the Pripyat Underground, where they launch an ambush on the player and his companions before they can make a break for the surface. This is the first appearance of snipers in the entirety of the game, taking advantage of numerous vantage points to snipe the player as they attempt to activate back-up power to the underground. They ambush the player twice: once when turning back the power on, and snipers appear when the player unlocks the door.
Once the player arrives in Pripyat, it's revealed that Monolith itself is slowly losing power, but is still a potent enough threat to have decimated the survivors of Operation Fairway. Of particular interest is a special weapon sighted in their possession, which Colonel Kovalsky sends a special ops team to confiscate. This mission is the first sighting of the Monolith Preachers, who make use of the rare and devastating Gauss Rifle. With the Preacher dead, the player then takes part in another mission, destroying one of the Monolith outposts in a bookstore – gunning them down while they pray. Later, the player must wipe out their forces in the Yubileiny Service Center in order to gain access to Lab X-8. It becomes apparent that, while some of them maintain a connection to the Monolith (namely the Preacher and Monolith Fighter), the majority of them have lost this link and are left at the Preachers' command.
Afterwards, the player is relatively free to explore Pripyat, though Monolith maintains at least two strongholds - the Prometheus Cinema and the River Port.
They serve as the main opposition during the finale, where at least two more Preachers make their appearance, trying to prevent the survivors of Operation Fairway from evacuating.
Unlike Shadow of Chernobyl, Monolith no longers patrols the city, which is now controlled by Loners, mutants and Mercenaries. They initially control the Hospital, the Book Store and the Yubileiny Service Center, though all three locations are later wiped out by the player. Afterwards, they only respawn in small numbers (between 5 and 15) at the River Port and the Prometheus Theater.
Call of PripyatEdit
The less common type of Monolithians, they rely on a classic Monolith Suit and use low-grade weaponry such as AKM-74/2Us. They are very weak (but stronger than Loner rookies), and are much easier to defeat than higher ranked Monolithians.
A very common type of Monolithian. They wear either Monolith Suits or Scientific Monolith suits, and have access to more assault rifles and other weapons, including the TRs 301, the Chaser 13 and the AKM-74/2.
Semi-common, they equip almost the same gear as Veteran Loners. There are three types of Veterans: the first wears the Scientific Monolith suit and uses the SVDm-2 sniper rifle, the second wears classic Monolith Suits or Radiation suits and uses the SGI-5k or the SA Avalanche. They are just as tough as other Veterans as they are able to withstand many shots (including a headshot in rare cases).
The most rare and dangerous of the Monolithians. Most of them use the faction variant of the Exoskeleton and use uncommon high-grade weaponry - namely the GP37, the Tunder S14 and the Eliminator, and a rarer version uses the classic Monolith suit and the Vintar BC sniper rifle. Due to their heavy armor and powerful weapons, they are dangerous enemies to deal with.
- In Call of Pripyat, the Monolith is actually neutral to the Ecologists in the game code. The reason for this is unknown since the Monolithians have no contact with the Scientists' Bunker.
- In early builds of Shadow of Chernobyl, the Monolith was going to be allied with the Bandits, but was changed to Mercenary at the final production. The reasons why and what effect on the plot that would have had are unknown.
- ↑ S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, st_dialog_manager, string id: dm_about_149, This place is enchanted with some really shitty magic, buddy. All we do is go 'round in circles looking for our missing friends, but so far we ain't found nothing but monsters. If you get to higher ground you can sometimes hear fragments of their radio comms, but it's impossible to make any sense of them. And that ain't the half of it! How do you explain the appearance of Monolithians from beyond the Barrier? I saw one of them once. He was wounded, his eyes were glazed over and he was mumbling the same words over and over: "Defend the Monolith!" I don't think he could feel pain, 'cause he wouldn't stop trying to grab my buddy's throat until we emptied a few clips into him. What do they want? What made them come back after the emission? I ain't got nothing but questions, friend...
- ↑ S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, st_dialog_manager.xml, string id: dm_cool_info_40, After the Monolithians started flooding back from beyond the Barrier we had the idea to catch one alive and find out how to get through the Scorcher and into the center of the Zone. Man, it took a lot of lives and even more ammo, but we did it. This guy took half a clip right in the chest but he was still pretty lively: grunting, struggling and trying to grab at our leader. We asked him nice and we asked him rough but he didn't tell us shit, just kept screaming "Defend the Monolith" over and over... I figure something must have happened to them on the other side. So we didn't really find out how to get past the Scorcher, but then again if they're coming from beyond the Barrier there must be a way, right? What do you think?
- ↑ S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat, Col. Kovalsky: "It's useless. First of all, they fight to the death. Our boys managed to get one alive when he was stunned by a grenade, but it didn't help much. We took our eyes off him for a second and he banged his head against the wall so hard that his skull cracked open like an egg."
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, st_dialogs_agroprom, stirng id: agr_duty_barman_around_1, Buzz? Well, a whole faction has gone missing. And it's not like they were taken out by people or wiped out by monsters. They just vanished, warts and all. These guys were weird too, with a real hard-on for the Zone. They believed that the Zone was alive, and in its center was a Monolith - a Wish Granter. So they declared themselves the protectors of this Monolith. And then one fine day their whole faction just got up and took off for the center. Yep, right to the Wish Granter. They headed for the Scorcher, crossed the Barrier, and noone has seen them since.
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, st_dialog_manager, string id dm_cool_info_25, I heard a whole faction went missing in the Zone. You ever heard of Monolith? Well, they used to protect the Zone from others, but they made a move towards the center right before the emission. Nobody has heard from them since, but recently some real aggressive stalkers have been attacking from where the Scorcher is, killing everyone and asking no questions. I know because I saw them myself around the military warehouses, and I reckon they might be those same Monolithians who disappeared. It wouldn't surprise me, because their uniforms looked real similar.
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, stable_bio_name.xml
- ↑ S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat, Lt. Kirillov: "Yeah, we broke into a Monolith warehouse the other day and it was full of ammo for every type of weapon you get in the Zone. I wonder how they get so much weaponry in here. I'm guessing one of the perimeter guards must be selling it to them..."