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Everything we know about Alan Wake 2

Alan, wake up: the next chapter in Remedy's acclaimed horror saga launches in October.

We’ve been waiting for the next chapter in the Alan Wake saga for thirteen years, and it’s finally almost here. Alan Wake 2, the long-awaited sequel, is the latest game from Remedy Entertainment. And if the hype is to be believed, it will be worth the long wait.

The journey hasn’t been easy for fans, but it’s been even more challenging for Remedy. They had a plan for the sequel since the first game launched, even creating a tech demo to show off their ideas. However, no publishers expressed interest when they started pitching it, so Remedy had to move forward with other projects.

Now that Remedy’s gained full control over the Alan Wake IP, they’ve been hard at work developing the next entry in the series. Alan Wake 2 is set to hit the scene this Halloween season, and by all accounts, it looks like it’ll blow us out of the water. But before it launches in October, here’s everything we know about the game so far.

This story is a monster…

Remedy kicked it all off with the (age-restricted) announcement trailer at the 2021 Game Awards.

(WARNING: Spoilers in this section for the original Alan Wake!)

When last we left Alan Wake, he was trapped at the bottom of a nightmarish dimension known as the Dark Place. He has been trying to escape ever since, desperately seeking a way out — currently, to no avail. In Alan Wake 2, he’s still battling through the nightmares and is writing a supernatural horror story that should be the key to his escape.

Alan was last seen in the real world 13 years ago. Now, it’s 2023, and the world has written Alan Wake off as missing, presumed dead. In a seemingly unrelated case, FBI agent Saga Anderson investigates a series of murders in the town of Bright Falls, Washington and finds some of Alan’s pages. As the lines between fiction and reality blur, both Alan and Saga find themselves trapped in a new nightmare of their own creation.

From the story trailers we’ve seen so far, it looks appropriately eerie and disturbing. And don’t worry: Remedy has confirmed that you don’t need to play the original game to understand the story. Nor will you need to play the AWE DLC for Control, which shares a universe with the Alan Wake games. It will certainly help you understand some of the minute details, and in any case, both of those games are awesome and you should play them anyway. However, you can go into Alan Wake 2 with no context and enjoy the story just fine.

…and monsters wear many faces

Alan Wake 2 Trailer
Alan’s hard at working polishing up the story.

You’ll be able to play as both Alan and Saga during Alan Wake 2, each with their own stories. You can play the two stories in any order you want. Regardless of who you play as, it’ll still be the same cinematic adventure you know and love.

From the looks of it, the two characters have their own gameplay styles (or, perhaps it’s more appropriate to say settings?). Both characters will have to deal with enemies throughout their adventures, with supernatural forces summoned by the darkness taking over the town of Bright Falls.

However, Saga’s story seems mostly confined to the real world where the environments are more rural and desolate. Alan, on the other hand, is seen traveling through fantastical and horrific urban landscapes that seem very out of place. How much these stories will intersect is unknown, but the characters will meet at least once according to the trailers.

Alan Wake 2 is an American horror story

The gameplay trailer reveals the true horrors of Alan Wake 2.

Many people associate Alan Wake with horror, and that’s true to some extent. The first Alan Wake took heavy inspiration from horror writers — I mean, for God’s sake, the first two words of the script are “Stephen King.” But the horror was mostly confined to its aesthetics, with a dark and brooding setting. As far as gameplay was concerned, it was mostly an action-adventure title.

Alan Wake 2 transitions the series fully into horror and doesn’t look back. The game is a survival horror title through and through, giving you plenty of scares and tension along the way. You’re still equipped with the iconic flashlight and can find several weapons throughout the game. However, like in Alan Wake, the best offense is knowing when to kill the darkness and when just to drive it away.

The game retains the same over-the-shoulder third-person perspective as before. Ammo and resources will be limited, and you’ll likely be able to travel off the beaten path in search of secrets and safe places. Although, in a game like Alan Wake 2, no place is truly safe from the darkness.

Are you afraid of the dark?

Alan Wake Forest Shack
You’ll visit all kinds of familiar and unfamiliar locations.

When you think of the original Alan Wake, you think of an immediate sense of darkness. Not just in its story, but in its environments which are literally covered in shadows.

That’s true of Alan Wake 2, though with a brand-new look. If you didn’t care for the world of Alan Wake basically being swallowed in blues and blacks and whites, Alan Wake 2 looks far more environmentally diverse. With two locations to visit — the idyllic Pacific Northwest town of Bright Falls and the terrifying dimension of the Dark Place — there will be lots of new places to explore.

Thankfully, Remedy knows how important maintaining continuity is for Remedy fans, despite its new direction. Model Ilkka Villi and voice actor Matthew Porretta return to portray Alan, with Melanie Liburd performing newcomer Saga. Other characters are under wraps for now, although Saga’s partner, FBI agent Alex Casey is modeled after Sam Lake and voiced by James McCaffrey. (No, it’s not an alter ego of Max Payne. Although, maybe…)

And even after the story of Alan Wake 2 is over, there will be more story content to devour. The Night Springs Expansion and Lake House Expansion will continue the Alan Wake 2 narrative. Although, of course, there’s no specific details on the expanded narrative yet.

When is Alan Wake 2 launching?

Alan Wake
Shine a light when Alan Wake 2 launches on Oct. 17!

Alan Wake 2 is developed by Remedy Entertainment and published by Epic Games Publishing. It will launch for the PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC via Epic Games Store on October 17, 2023. As of now, the game will be a digital exclusive. There are no plans for a physical disc version at this time.

There will be a standard edition of the game and a deluxe version. The deluxe version includes an expansion pass that features the Night Springs and Lake House story expansions. You also get the Nordic Shotgun Skin, Crimson Windbreaker, and Lantern for Saga, and the Parliament Shotgun Skin and Celebrity Suit for Alan. If you pre-order the game, you’ll gain access to the Ornate Revolver Skin for Alan and Survival Resources Pack for Saga.

The standard edition will cost $49.99 USD on PC, and $59.99 USD on consoles. The deluxe edition costs $69.99 USD on PC and $79.99 on consoles. 

What are you most excited for in Alan Wake 2? Let us know!

Daniel Hein

Daniel Hein is either A) a lifelong video game fanatic, writer, and storyteller just sharing his thoughts on things, or B) some kind of werewolf creature. We're not quite sure which yet. He also makes mediocre video game retrospectives (and other content!) on YouTube where you can watch him babble on for hours about nothing.
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