Alan Wake (X360) pt.2

Posted on Sun 17 April 2011 in video games

By now I’ve finished watching the LP from the previous post until the end of the main game (read: excluding the two DLCs). I’ve also jotted down another batch of thoughts about the game itself.

First things first: The game will get extremely repetitive after a while. Well, the thing is, once you are a few hours in and got used to the Taken and the possessed things trying to murder you (looking at you barrels and other heavy environment objects), the game stays that way. There is nothing new to see at this point. My basic conclusion is that with the acquisition of the flash-bangs you’ve basically seen every gameplay mechanic of the game. And it’s not like there were a lot of them to begin with.

I am ashamed by what the LPer called a puzzle there (in the mine). That’s not a puzzle it’s simply “press obvious button to continue” and then “press next obvious button” after that. It does not qualify as puzzle.

I acknowledge the effects at the stage being very well put into place. In case people are lost here: I don’t want to spoiler anything but I’m talking about the Anderson farm.

I am totally into how the music ties into the narrative at the farm, it’s so beautifully done and one of the few things I don’t consider forced creativity in the game. I love it though it certainly has some cliche-y appeal to it.

On a slightly related note I do now know why Youtube has so much traffic. As browser streaming and its quality is (thanks to Adobe Flash) either crappy or extremely mean to my poor CPU I’m downloading the files using Jdownloader and watching them locally. Thanks to a totally messed up first try and a second that got me some more evil .FLV files in which sound and video were out of sync I am now downloading the videos a friggin’ third time. So much for that.

Uhm, concerning the resource caches… I’m sure it’s quite comfortable and intuitive to have those “emergency” boxes around, though I’m not sure how it fits into the big picture that they also contain ammunition. Thought that might be a hint to one of the pages describing war preparations. Nevermind that. The game does indeed explain that at the end. I was overhasty when I assumed that it would not.

Heads up to the devs for the Lord of the Rings reference. Wasn’t quite that spectacular but felt right there. (Twice even.)

Also the fact that the devs thought it might be cool to take away all your stuff from time to time is really annoying, especially if you don’t have a chance to pick up the lost equipment afterwards. I mean, it gets old after the third time, doesn’t it?

The second Alan exclaimed “more birds” I was instandly reminded of the birdphone, in case anyone else also went through the The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening LP. It’s the birdphone’s revenge!

And, uhm, seriously… the Night Springs episodes are just crappy. I might be me remembering and simultaneously glorifying the old times but the Twilight Zone was a way better show and the episodes were frighting. Night Springs in contrast just feels so cheap it’s disgusting. - The worse thing is that I’m not sure if is like this on purpose.

The idea of the plot-item being related to a childhood memory isn’t only quite original but also an adorable piece of creativity. Somehow I am aware that it’s terribly childish but that item just convinced me that Alan Wake was not that bad. I mean, there are still lots and lots of things I don’t like but there are definitely some highlights of creative work that I can’t ignore.

I found the ending to be extremely unsatisfying but was quickly reminded that my friend Trayzard told me that Remedy had planned to release Alan Wake in multiple Episodes so I assume most people were comfortable buying an seemingly incomplete game. Well done Remedy. So off to the DLC videos I am.