This FAQ has been archived for posterity purposes and information below may now be out of date. The Alan Wake FAQ was maintained by sidetwo and Morry but extra thanks goes out to [HP] for answering and providing some of the questions.

[SIZE="4"]General Questions[/SIZE]

When is Alan Wake going to be released?

Alan Wake was released May 14th 2010 in Europe, May 18th in North America, May 20th in Australia and May 27th in Japan. Official announcement thread can be found here for more details.

What platforms will Alan Wake be available on?

Alan Wake was released exclusively on the Xbox 360.

What happened to the PC version?

Remedy recently commented about the PC version saying (14/07/09):

"It is accurate that we are currently working exclusively on the Xbox360 version of Alan Wake. PC plans are currently open, and therefore it’s safe to say that at least a simultaneous launch with the Xbox version will not happen at this late stage. Remedy has a deep heritage in PC gaming and would love to see a PC version available to its PC followers, ultimately however this decision lies with our publisher."

Why has the game taken so long to develop?

Well ”quality” is whats taking so long. Well of course something like this takes its time, we're still even if we've hired more people, a relatively small team when compared to other studios making similar games. And when you're doing the game you put the quality standards pretty high and you want to make a good game, of course there is also large ambitions from the whole team in every area and that always takes time.. before the game is done. - Sam Lake

Will there be a demo?

A demo for Alan Wake will not be released prior to the game's launch. It is still as yet undecided if there will be a demo post-launch.

Who is publishing Alan Wake?

Microsoft Game Studios are publishing the game.

Will the game still look good on the 360?

Yes. The 360 only has 3 cores but according to mixuk from Remedy it shouldn't matter.

"Having several cores helps, but is not required, since you can run several processes on one thread. In the current plans the PC and 360 versions will be pretty identical.

"Threading was built to support the 360's 6 hardware threads, thus we were one of the best showcases for Intel's quad core (at the time of the IDF presentation)" - Markus Maki

Also, we stream necessary data to memory when needed, the whole world will not be loaded into memory constantly. It's the same idea that was already in GTA3 for PS2, remember, it only had 32mb."

Alan Wake is expected to run at at least 30 frames per second on the Xbox 360.

What is happening with Max Payne 3?

Max Payne 3 is being developed by Rockstar Vancouver (Barking Dog Studios) with a release scheduled for late 2010. Remedy are not involved with development of the title.

“The game’s story just went through another total re-write earlier this month (the third that I am aware of in the past two years) and that [means] the team would have to have all of the content done by April or May to make that August release date.” - Anonymous Rockstar employee, January 15, 2010.

"As of now, we're internally completely focused on Alan Wake. This is our way of doing things, and it's the best way to guarantee that Alan Wake will be the game it deserves to be." - Petri Järvilehto
Remedy and 3D Realms split IP and ownership 50:50 and eventually sold the rights to the Max Payne series to Take 2 for $48 million.

Why isn't Alan Wake on the PlayStation 3?

"1. We never announced platforms except for "next generation of consoles". Yeah, the plural is in there, so I do understand where the sentiment comes from, so I do apologise for any disappointments.

2. Microsoft did not force Remedy to take the publishing deal

PS3 development was a big unknown to an independent 3rd party developer in mid 2005 when this decision was made. While it's a great device and has lots of good games nowadays, it's still quoted by many respected developers as being more expensive and slower to develop for than Xbox360.

We have absolutely nothing against PS3, far from it, and in fact we are still a registered Sony PS3 developer. It was a big decision for us to go with a console first party publisher with Alan Wake, but looking at it in hindsight I still think it was the right one for the game and for the company. We get a better game for you to enjoy and have less technological risks while making it."
- Markus Maki

[SIZE="4"]The Game[/SIZE]

What is the game about?

Alan Wake is a bestselling horror writer. Early on in his career, his fiance Alice, was his muse. When he'd first met her, he had started to see strange dreams which he used as material for his first book, which went on to be a big success. It was a dream come true.
The game starts with Wake travelling with his wife Alice to the idyllic, small American town of Bright Falls. This vacation has been motivated by Wake's ongoing writer's block in an attempt to regain his creative flow. However, after Alice subsequently vanishes, Wake is hurled into a real-life version of his own dark vision, with the pages of his unfinished supernatural thriller come true before his very eyes.

Will Alan Wake use the comic-book style of narrative like Max Payne?

Players will control Wake as he desperately tries to recover the lost pages of his manuscript to find out what is happening. Scenes in the manuscript, written by Alan, have a disturbing habit of coming true and therefore each page that is recovered will reveal more about the dark presence that has been unleashed in Bright Falls. The pages are an integral part of building the great thriller story but also an important component for the player to unravel the mystery.

"The graphic novel screens, we feel, were a Max Payne specific thing. With Alan Wake we want to integrate the story more tightly to the gameplay. There will be cinematic in-game cutscenes, but more importantly there will be scripted events, and we want to have the important NPCs around in the game as much as possible while the player is in control. Voice-over narration was a very useful tool that we used in Max Payne, and it's something we are considering for Alan Wake as well, but done in the style that's quite different from Max Payne." - Sam Lake

Alan will narrate his thoughts throughout the game as a means of character and story development. "Narration was one of the story telling tools that we used in Max Payne and with Wake, it's such a fantastic tool because he's a writer who's writing out the story itself. It works out really well." - Petri Järvilehto

Is it Third Person or First Person perspective?

You take control of Alan using a third person perspective.

Will there be Multiplayer?

There will be no multiplayer in this game.

"We have all kinds of ideas related to replayability, but we want to prototype them further before we'll talk about them." - Sam Lake

"We'd much rather give the players a great single-player game, than a mediocre single and multiplayer game." -Petri Järvilehto

How is the game structured?

The story of Alan Wake is made up like a continuing season of a TV series, consisting episodes where the story unfolds as the player completes missions. Some of the episodes end up in a classic cliffhanger, while others are calmer, concentrating on character development and Alan's past. Although you can play the game in one-episode portions, that isn't Remedy's ultimate goal. "We want to give the game an irresistible 'one more episode' atmosphere" lead designer Petri Järvilehto says.

Will there be wildlife in the game?


Max Payne has bullet-time, what will Alan Wake have?

"We believe that our approach with Alan Wake will provide the players with a new take with the combat style and gameplay. We're not revealing any details yet though." - Sam Lake

"The combat is not purely about gunplay. The use of light plays an important role in the combat, and different light sources provide new gameplay angles there." - Petri Järvilehto

The fight scenes in the game emphasize on quality and uniqueness, not quantity. "Even the risk of having to get involved in a fight has to feel suspenseful" says Petri Järvilehto. "One of our biggest challenges has been to try and turn a fighting encounter that lasts only for a couple of seconds into something that feels thrilling even after a minute."

How does light have an effect on gameplay?

Light will weaken or hurt Wake's enemies, and creatively taking advantage of any and all light sources within Alan Wake's grim world ought to be one of the interesting aspects of play.

Are there any loading times?

No. Utilising multiple cores, the game will seamlessly generate vast areas of the game world for the graphics card to render.

Where is Bright Falls located?

Bright Falls is located in Washington, USA.

Where did the ideas for Alan Wake come from?

"The TV-series Twin Peaks is one of our sources of inspiration. The location in the game is similar, an idyllic small town in the state of Washington with something threatening waiting under the surface. The TV show also had an excellent nightmarish atmosphere. The works of the author Stephen King is another source of inspiration. He has used the idea of a writer whose life turns to a nightmare in several of his stories." - Sam Lake

How long is the main storyline?

The story arc of Max 2 was modeled after that of a movie. With Alan Wake our template is a season of a TV-series. Alan Wake, season 1, if you will. Remedy is definately aiming for a longer gameplay duration.

How many DVD's will the final game be on?

Alan Wake will fit on a single DVD.


How far is the draw distance in the game world?

Currently around 2 kilometres (1.2 - 1.3 miles).

What graphical methods will be implemented in the game?

Complete modeling of atmospheric scattering, fully volumetric shadows that are projected through the entire world, full weather modeling, day/night time cycles, ambient occlusion (both SSAO and pre-calculated), normal mapping, high dynamic rendering, bloom, depth of field and loads of different pixel-shader effects.

What engine is Alan Wake using?

It's an in-house engine developed by Remedy, known as the Alan Wake Engine and incorporates the Havok physics component. The game is being designed with five threads: rendering, audio, streaming, physics and terrain tessellation. One core processor can be dedicated to physical calculations.

What tools are used to make the game?

3DSMax is used for object modeling, whilst the world environment is created using Remedy's own tool - WorldEditor.


What level of development is the game at?

"We've spent a lot of time in pre-production, fleshing out the concept, writing the core technology and building the tools that we'll need to be able to create the game. Right now we're making rapid progress, but there's certainly still a lot of work ahead of us." - Petri Järvilehto

How many people are working on Alan Wake at the moment?

Remedy Entertainment has over 40 staff members, though parts of the game are also outsourced.

How long has Alan Wake been in development?

Alan Wake was in development for 6 years with initial concept starting in 2004 and final release in May 2010.

"Alan Wake is a concept that we've been working with for over a year now. Once Max Payne 2 shipped we spent a little while recovering from the crunch, and then started working on different concepts trying to find the concept that would excite us and that we could be passionate about. And after several drafts we found something that we really liked... and that concept was Alan Wake." - Petri Järvilehto (31 May 2005)

How much has it cost so far to develop Alan Wake?

The game's production costs were estimated at 7 million dollars before Remedy entered in to a publishing deal with Microsoft. Remedy was financing the production itself for a couple of years until Microsoft Game Studios came in with its vast resources. The game's final budget is a business secret.

Who is Alan Wake modelled after?

A professional Finnish actor, Ilkka Villi

Who is Alan Wake's voice actor?

Alan Wake is voiced by Matthew Porretta.

(This was correctly guessed by ldynwaitin (see reveal thread))

Who is composing the music for Alan Wake?
Petri Alanko