Alan Wake’s American Nightmare

29 Feb

Alan Wake’s American Nightmare | Third Person,
Shooter, Horror, Action, Adventure | 2012 | Site

The story and gameplay are fluid and dark in this follow up to Alan Wake. During the single player campaign my time has been spent as follows: I walk around a bit following the mission directions, explore then just stop and look around. The game is beautiful, and I will never stop enjoying being able to look around with a flashlight. Something about pouring the flashlight from surface to surface in the game is absolutely petrifying. You feel like you are just a turn away from something terrifying. The story is entertaining but not fully flushed out. Again, you are Alan Wake and SPOILER having been trapped under Cauldron Lake at the end of the original Alan Wake you are replaying a series of events in your mind inspired by an episode of Night Springs. (Night Springs is a television show Alan Wake used to write for.) The gameplay is very tight and compliments the environment. Your flashlight is your primary weapon. You use it to burn enemies’ shields a.k.a. “The Darkness” away before you can attack with a traditional weapon like a gun or arrow. I found the run and dodge mechanic to be a lot easier to master and felt a lot more fluid. There are more weapons then in the full game and less alternative light sources, which is a fair trade in my opinion. Alan Wake’s American Nightmare starts extremely strongly but quickly becomes repetitive. There are three main areas to explore and you visit each area about three times. After the second run-through it becomes a bit of a chore. Alan Wake’s American Nightmare has the addition of an arcade “horde-like” mode. This is a welcome addition. It is extremely fun, offers different environments, supplies a good challenge and lengthens the game considerably. The premise is simple. You have limited weapons and have to last waves of enemies until dawn. (Side note: It may be just me but I felt certain areas in the single player and several levels in the arcade mode were very reminiscent of Red Dead Redemption. The original Alan Wake shared the same release date as Red Dead. The levels that really caught my attention were the cemetery – extremely similar to the church cemetery stage in Undead Overrun and the town – which looks like a portion of Armadillo. There is even a small platform in the center for a hanging) The voice acting is adequate and the dialogue is a little disappointing seeing as the main character is a writer. One final complaint, as I was playing I encountered a glitch that basically broke the game. It required restarting an entire level to fix it. Luckily it was near the beginning of that level and didn’t take up much time. The Remedy message board indicates they are looking into the specific glitch many people have encountered and are working on a patch. Over all, I did love Alan Wake’s American Nightmare and knowing this is a stand-alone XBLA game and not a true sequel makes me want Alan Wake 2 even more.

Developer: Remedy | Publisher: Microsoft
Platforms: XBLA

Alan Wake’s American Nightmare Trailer


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