Finland's Remedy Entertainment delivers this "psychological thriller" action-adventure, which follows a popular horror novelist through his darkest nightmares. Mourning a vanished lover and beset by insomnia, Alan Wake has lost his best source of creative inspiration: his dreams. He retreats to the little East Coast town of Bright Falls, where the horrors he once saw in his sleep seem to become real. Mission by mission, the player guides the character to explore these eerie stories as they come alive in the isolated coastal village.
Alan Wake shares more with its predecessors than a vague pun in the title character's name. As in the studio's Max Payne, the hero's nightmares yield grotesque monsters to battle and surreal mysteries to unravel, mostly from an action-oriented, third-person perspective. The mission structure in Alan Wake is less linear, however, with the town of Bright Falls serving as a hub for numerous plot-related undertakings. And instead of a handgun, Alan Wake's trustiest weapon may be his flashlight, as darkness seems to be the source of all his nightmarish troubles.