Alan Wake

Moby ID: 54778
Windows Specs
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Description official description

The PC version of this game was released almost two years after the original Xbox 360 title. It contains:

  • Alan Wake (full original game)
  • Alan Wake: The Signal (first expansion, slipstreamed into the game)
  • Alan Wake: The Writer (second expansion, slipstreamed into the game)
  • Higher resolution and higher fidelity
  • Configurable mouse and keyboard controls along with gamepad support
  • Customizable graphics settings and support for different aspect ratios
  • Optimized engine to use quad core CPUs
  • Additional textures and the ability to hide the HUD
  • Support for the AMD Eyefinity 3D 3-screen mode and NVIDIA NVISION2 Stereoscopic 3D

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Credits (Windows version)

728 People (506 developers, 222 thanks) · View all

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  • Testology [www.testology.co.uk]
  • Testronic Labs [www.testroniclabs.com]
[ full credits ]

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 83% (based on 24 ratings)

Players

Average score: 4.0 out of 5 (based on 59 ratings with 1 reviews)

It's not safe to go out at night, Alan

The Good
I'm not normally a fan of survival-horror games, but the closest thing I got to such a game was the Left 4 Dead series. Ages ago, I picked up a copy of Alan Wake from a sale GOG was having, along with Alan Wake's American Nightmare and a few other games. I read great reviews of the game, so I was a bit curious to see what all the fuss was about.

Alan Wake is the best-selling author of the Alex Casey novels. He and his wife, Alice, decide to go on vacation to the fictional town of Bright Falls. This is a perfect opportunity for Wake to recover from the writer's block he's been having for the past two years, but things take a turn for the worse. Wake ends up searching for his missing wife, who is kidnapped after the two settle in a cabin away from the hustle and bustle, and shortly after, he realizes that events are coming to life from a book he doesn't even remember writing.

Alan Wake spans six episodes which act more like a TV series, complete with a nice recap of the previous episode. The first part of episode one serves as a tutorial that shows you how to deal with the Taken, human beings controlled by the Dark Presence, which turns them into vicious killers. Actually, the Taken comes in many different forms such as birds and poltergeists. Out of these, the birds are the most disturbing as they let out a rather horrible sound just before they attack.

You also learn how to use the power of light as a defense against them. You'll spend most of the game running around at night, trying to complete your objectives and fending off Taken. The further you proceed through the game, the more aggressive the Taken is. Having said that, there are a few peaceful moments in the game, and I enjoyed playing through these as they give you a break from the action for a while.

As a third-person game that focuses on exploration, I enjoyed walking around and seeing what I can find – things such as manuscript pages lying around. Not only are the manuscript pages worth reading, but they also tell you what happened or is going to happen. I also enjoyed looking through the Bright Falls diner, several apartments, and houses. The aforementioned diner is filled with people that play a major role later in the game.

The graphics are amazing, especially when the game takes place during the day. The views from the lookout points that you come across are breathtaking. At some points in the game, you can focus on your current objective and use that camera angle as another lookout point. Furthermore, I was impressed by the Matrix-style slow motion shot that occurs when you make a perfect shot, the way that the Taken disintegrates, and the way the camera shifts to a third-person view of a Taken when he approaches Wake from behind. Another thing that was impressive was the flash of red when you are attacked by Taken. Very powerful stuff.

The game was written by Sam Lake, and he did a wonderful job at creating the script, not just for the cinematics, but for the entire game. It draws you in, and I just couldn't wait to hear what Wake says next. The key element is Alan Wake is suspense. More often than not, as I made my way towards my objective, I found myself looking behind me to see if any Taken is following Wake; and I was eager to find out what was going to happen when I reached the objective.

The music in the game is well composed. As Wake wanders around in the dark, the music is somewhat relaxing. However, it gets rather dramatic as he is fighting the Taken. There are some good licensed songs that play on radios Wake encounters during the game as well as the credits. The songs that I enjoyed most of all are by “Poets of the Fall”, a Finnish band that has more than one song in the game. Their ending song in Episode 4 contains lyrics, that explains what Wake needs to do quite nicely.

The highlight for me is running away from the cops in the third episode, listening to police chatter along the way. I also enjoyed watching an episode of “Night Springs” on those old-style TVs. They are included as extras in the GOG downloads, so I can watch the episode again if I want to.

There are a couple of DLCs that came free with the Windows version, and these follow on where the main game left off. Wake is trapped in The Dark Place and has to get out. There, he meets a doppelganger of himself, who always tell Wake what is about to happen. This gives the opportunity for the player to prepare him/herself for the incoming attack. Some of the music is pretty haunting, and the sound is on par with the main game.

So, would I play Alan Wake again? Yes I would, but on the Nightmare setting. More manuscript pages can be found, but they can't be found in neither Easy or Normal; and it would be good if I get to read them all. Also, Video Commentary is available in the Windows version, so think I will enable the commentary while I play this difficulty.

The Bad
I can't think of anything wrong with this game.

The Bottom Line
Alan Wake is a psychological action thriller set in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. It acts a bit like a TV series, and the content is what you would expect from one. The titular character has to make his way through the night, fighting various forms of Taken that attack him in droves; and light happens to be his only ally against them. The graphics and sound is brilliant, and the excellent script makes you want to see what happens next.

The Windows version of AW was originally canceled by Microsoft, but Remedy begged and begged for MS to release the Windows version until they caved in. It may have been seen a late release, but at least we get some free stuff with it.

Windows · by Katakis | カタキス (43093) · 2015

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Sciere.

Windows Apps added by Koterminus.

Game added February 20, 2012. Last modified January 21, 2024.