1st Tier Poster
Stalker is basically based on the last chapters of Roadside Picnic...it pretty much ignores most of the book
Funny that you made this thread as I've been reading Strugatskys a lot recently
I'd recommend starting from Noon: 22nd Century...other books from the Noon universe which are definitely worth reading are Space Mowgli (their most Lem-like book) and Far Rainbow (both are excellent mini-novels).
from the Noon books about "progressorism" (that is, the influencing of less developed humanoid civilizations according to enlightened Earth's vision): the last two books of the Maxim Kammerer trilogy: Beetle in the Anthill and The Great Revelation (or The Time Wanderers, as it is known in English for some weird reason). I didn't like the first part of the trilogy (Prisoners of Power) although it can be viewed as a veiled criticism of the Soviet way of life. Hard to Be a God is also pretty good...it is basically a study of totalitarianism but it's a bit hard to take this book seriously as a sci fi. The Kid from Hell is quite similar to it.
I recently re-read an early Noon book The Land of Crimson Clouds...this is basically hard sci fi and describes an expedition to Venus. For some reason it doesn't take into account the insane temperature and atmospheric pressure on the planet..it's more like a tropical Mars teeming with life where humans wearing protective suits can easily walk around. If you're willing to overlook this then it's actually pretty good.
Two brilliant books nominally linked with Noon universe but I'd say they stand apart very distinctively in terms of style and I wouldn't call them sci fi at all: Snail on the Slope (possibly their best book) and The Final Circle of Paradise
Second Invasion from Mars - a quite hilarious and also deeply disquieting book about a fictional city in a fictional country succumbing to the "soft power" of the Martians...although this is pure allegory it also describes human behavior quite realistically.
Dead Mountaineer's Hotel - another very good book: a detective mystery with an extraterrestial element, takes place somewhere in central Europe in the 60s or 70s. There's a great Estonian movie based on it which might be on youtube.
Roadside Picnic - another great standalone book blending several genres and topics; the general vibe of it is completely different from Stalker.
Ugly Swans - also a standalone book, I remember practically nothing about it so I doubt I liked it a lot...it was quite surreal, similar to Snail on a Slope in style but vastly inferior IMO.
Big games are easy than the other games, unfortunately. Every times we have the control the games, under the control the games, during the games we had the some possibilities, some big chances, some big okazyons, something like that but what can I do, sometimes? And….it’s the football, that’s the football, something happened. Everything is something happened. - Fatih Terim