Review · Video Game

Alan Wake – Review 3/7 Stars

Off to an odd start here, I figured I’d start off my reviews of games and other things. For those who somehow missed this game years ago let me say it came out as an episodic game for the Xbox 360 and finally made its way to PC. In my recent quest to get through my backlog in my spare time I decided to play this, and well my feelings were mixed.

First of all I’m not going to go about the details of the game here. For those who want to know more about the game itself then look it up, there are much better places for that. What I will enumerate is simply my thoughts on it so here goes.

Gameplay wise I felt that it was mixed. While it was “new” and interesting to have the light as a gameplay mechanic, I felt that it soon got old. Mostly ended up with a combo of shine light “pop” then shoot until they’re dead. Great and all at first but doing it over and over got old. Also the groups of enemies ended up the same over and over as well, which didn’t help it with not feeling retentive. Finally every chapter had the long trek through the woods from point A to point B. Here and there were sections that were different I appreciated, but overall it was the same time and again which didn’t help. While not the most repetitive game out there, it certainly is one of them.

In regards to the story, I’m more mixed. At first I hated to writing, ironically being a game about a writer I thought it might be better, but the lines and characters all felt flat. However, what is interesting is the mystery of what’s going on. That I felt drove much of the action and helped keep me invested enough to keep going. I also have to hand it to the game that the “horror” or rather what makes the game have any scary edge to it at all is instead the horror of insanity, and not knowing if you the protagonist are truly losing it or not. That is classic but in today’s world of gore, very refreshing.

The ending, despite this game bing old, I won’t spoil, but was ambiguous, which for a game that may or may not get a sequel always bothers me. There is something to be said by the mystery ending that compels one to read forms and discussions after the fact. But there is also a downside to too much ambiguity. I felt it leaded toward the latter but not too much…

Overall an interesting game, I’d recommend it if you have the stamina for the repetitive gameplay and poorly delivered lines. Otherwise there are better games to spend your time on.

3/7 Stars


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