It’s finally here! For everyone who has been anxiously watching the Internet and scouring the games industry press the good news for you all is that Alan Wake has landed, and the impact shudders have sent waves throughout the gaming World. For anyone out there who hasn’t yet heard of Alan Wake…” what the hell have you been doing?? “, and here is a quick rundown of the story so far.
Alan Wake sees you taking up the role of the thriller writer of the title as he struggles to overcome a bad case of “writer’s block”. To give our hero a little R&R and to help alleviate the stress, he is packed off to the sleepy fictional town of Bright Falls alongside his beautiful fiance. It is only upon their arrival at said sleepy town and then the subsequent mysterious disappearance of his fiance does the true nature of the game begin to unfold.
Remedy game studios have designed Alan Wake as a mission based deeply interactive gaming experience that allows the gamer to fully immerse themselves into the environment and tackle the situations that your character will have to face as the tale progresses. An achingly beautiful game that fully utilizes the ample experience by the developers of the smash hit gaming series Max Payne. Remedy studios have brought another blockbuster to the party with Alan Wake. And at the same time as expanding on the open world, free-roamer game, it seems as if they have indeed created a totally unique genre for gamers, that being the ‘episodic’ title.
To expalin what we mean by “episodic” title you must first get to grips with just how huge this game is destined to be if it becomes a success, and we sincerely hope that it does. What Microsoft and Remedy are trying to create with Alan Wake is so great for gamers that we hope people fully understand and appreciate the concept? Imagine, if you will, how big major TV series such as Friends, 24, CSI etc would have been if they had been limited to just one episode? Do you see where we are going with this? Okay, now imagine if you will, just how huge some videogames would have been if they had been made into a series? Can you picture just how truly awesome it would have been to play something like Grand Theft Auto, but in a similar “episodic” format as a television series. So instead of playing minor missions with varying objectives and then getting the odd DLC package thrown at you from time to time, imagine playing the game as a series of missions split into episodes that are so good that they stand alone as titles themselves and are released ,say, every six-months to a year to keep the public interest in them at fever pitch. Now are you with us?
Now take said “episodic” formula and transport it over to a game like, Heavy Rain, for instance. Now can you imagine how fantastic that would be to instead of playing snippets of characters , or in only playing DLC ‘after the fact’, ( as in you alredady know who the killer is ), imagine if you could have an episode of the game released where you get to play a whole title as one particular character to the plot? Where everything you do affects everything about how your next title in the series will play with the next character? And imagine if, for example, at the end of each episode they all have their own cliffhanger, but just as in a TV series, it only seeks to further intrigue you and you will never find out the truth until the actual final episode? Now can you see just how good this could be for the games industry? Yep, us too! We just hope that the industry recognises that at the end of the day, these are all the same game, and as such, for these particular types of title there should be a significant price drop, say to around £15-£20 a title. Which is about the norm for a stand alone DLC package that gets released on disc.
Alan Wake is a deeply psychological thriller that has a web of intricately spun plots within plots that reveal a further spiders nest of sub-plots. Twisting and turning and sending the gamer down one direction only for the route to split into five different exits all with varying outcomes of nastiness and uncertainty at the end of them. To say that this game will leave you guessing is like saying Freddy Kreuger had a slight personality disorder, yeah its true but there’s a little more to it than that…and then some.
With unique puzzle and problem solving skills and a fantastic combat system, Alan Wake must battle monsters and demons from alternate realities to save his girl and humanity in this one. Two worlds and two realities will collide with dire consequences as one man stands alone to try and protect the things he loves from the terrifying nightmares that lay waiting in the darkness to feed on our fears. And it is in the darkness that Alan Wake will spend most of his time as battles the dark with its greatest enemy, light itself.
Alan Wake was released in the United Kingdom and in the rest of Europe on May 14th, 2010. For more info and some great live action video’s why not head over to http://www.brightfalls.com