Previews// Alan Wake

Posted 19 Feb 2010 17:32 by
Companies:
Games: Alan Wake
Back to the dream scene, and Alan ends up in a cabin plagued by some serious paranormal activity earthquake tremors, TVs switching on showing nothing but an eyeball, banging on doors and windows, and finally an entire wall exploding, offering your only means of escape. After yet more chases, confrontations with the Taken and a scramble towards a lighthouse, Alan Wakes up (ho ho) to find himself in the car with his wife, heading towards his vacation spot Bright Falls.

This part of the game is set in the daytime, and is a lot more laid-back and serene than the action-packed night time stages. Here, I find that my aim is more focussed on learning more about the story, Alan's background and the world around him. It's all a bit Home and Away, really, with Alice acting like quite the model wife, and Alan being a bit of a disgruntled dick in all honesty. It's a nice change of pace as you listen to the residents of Bright Falls chat amongst themselves.

Just like a classic horror film, Wake stops by a diner to pick up the keys to his holiday cabin but Carl Stucky, his landlord, isn't there. Instead, a mysterious lady in black hands him a set of keys, that belong to Bird Leg Cabin, on Diver's Isle. Unbeknownst to Wake, and to channel a different kind of movie altogether, those weren't the keys he was looking for.

After settling in and having a row with Alice (typical British holiday then), Wake storms off into the darkness only to hear screams someone has taken her away, and a chase scene ends with the writer diving into the lake... only to wake up seven days later in a crashed car on an unknown hillside.

I continued to play through this part of the episode, which saw Wake travel through the looming forest in the moonlight in an attempt to reach a nearby gas station for help. Along the way, more Taken appear, inventive gameplay mechanics become apparent such as the use of your torch to discover light-sensitive hidden messages and you face various puzzles to reach your destination.

Fighting my way through the dark shadows, I discover pages of a story. It's a manuscript for a discarded story called 'Departure' the same book that Alan Wake intended to write, but never finished. And eerily, the events that take place in these pages speak of incidents that have already happened to Alan most recently or of incidents that are just about to happen...

Just as I reach the gas station, a cutscene plays to round off the episode. A sheriff comes to the station to answer Alan's distressed phone call, and seems confused when he tells her that he's been staying at Bird Leg Cabin. Apparently, Diver's Isle hasn't existed for several years the cliffhanger hits you as the camera zooms out of the lake, showing no existence of Alan's lodge ever being there.

And with that, I was eager to see and play more. But no, I wasn't allowed, which sucks. I do wish I could just tune in next week to the same channel for more, but I'll have to wait until the game's fully finished and released on the 21st of May.
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Companies:
Games: Alan Wake

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