Sunday, 19 December 2010

Review: Alan Wake

You are a writer on holiday with your wife when she disappears. While searching for her you discover pages of a book that supposedly you’ve written. There is also a terrible dark presence that is hanging around the town hindering your search. That is the introduction to Alan Wake, from there the game plays out as a mini psychological thriller TV series. This game has been a long time coming it’s been almost 5 years since it was first announced at E3 2005.

The story is really enjoyable and really makes you think, the ending is a confusing, overall in it’s entirety the story is a good length and there is no doubt about it that the game does give you the chance to make your own mind up as to what it means. At the time of writing this I have played the first of the DLC, so I do have some extra knowledge however I don’t think I'm going to see any answers any time soon.

Your main weapon is a torch which you need to use in order to get rid of the darkness that surrounds the enemies, then once that's out the way you can unload with your choice of firearm. As a unique method or combat i thought it worked really well. it also makes you think a little more when jumping into the fray.

The game’s soundtrack is really good with a few tracks taken from actual bands that work really well in the game, the orchestral soundtrack as well helps with the building the tension as well as the setting the mood. Although some of the character models are a little ropey in places, on the whole they are good and the cut scenes are superb. The pinnacle though has to be the environmental vista’s you get of the valley that the game is set in.

There is re-playability in this game, the hardest difficulty is only unlocked after the first play through, there are also some collectibles that are only available in the Nightmare difficulty. As far as difficulty goes the game has a good balance. I’ve just finished my Nightmare playthough and it makes you think before you get into it with a group of enemy's.

Overall I really enjoyed this game and I'm slightly disappointed that the game wasn’t as well received as it was hoped, this has meant that the sequel is not necessarily confirmed. Is the game worth a 5 year wait? No I'm not sure if it is, don’t get me wrong the game is good and is really enjoyable but I do wonder what took it so long.

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