Alan Wake has gone gold after five years in development and to mark the moment, Remedy has released a very cool inside look at the game called Alan Wake: Building the Thriller.
We don’t do “gone gold” announcements very often but I’m making an exception in this case. Not just because it’s been a long half-decade since Remedy announced that it was leaving Max Payne behind to work on the “psychological thriller” Alan Wake, but because of the unusual documentary-style video Remedy has put out in the run-up to its release.
Building the Thriller lays out the story behind the game, which should be familiar to most of us by now: Best-selling author Alan Wake, afflicted with writer’s block, takes a vacation with his wife to the idyllic town of Bright Falls. But instead of a relaxing escape, Wake finds himself trapped in a nightmare, battling a mysterious evil while trying to understand the mystery behind the pages of a manuscript he doesn’t remember writing.
The video provides a closer look at the “light and dark” gameplay mechanic, which will be a crucial component of the game. Some of Wake’s most vital tools will be flashlights, road flares and even massive military searchlights which he will need to “burn away the darkness,” but along with the unusual combat, Remedy also focused on developing a strong cast of supporting characters and mixed an original score with licensed music to create “strong atmosphere.” To keep the action flowing, Alan Wake monitors player performance and adjusts difficulty on the fly to maintain a “sweet spot” that provides constant challenge without overwhelming players.
Remedy has set some lofty goals for Alan Wake; if this video is any indication, it might just manage to pull it off. We’ll find out soon enough: The game comes out on May 14 in Europe and May 18 in North America.