Alan Wake is an action horror game that is anything but shy about its influences. Its tale of an evil engulfing a small logging town wears its Twin Peaks and Stephen King influences with pride and it has to be said that the conifer forests of the Northwest USA make a nice change from the video game norm.
Its approach to storytelling is classy but hardly a revolution, although the developers' decision to divide the game into episodes much like a TV series is a nice touch.
The game also does a good job of brining back the scares to horror gaming, which recently have been losing ground to the more action based approach of titles such as Resident Evil 5. Ammo is in short supply and the fear that the batteries for your flashlight, your primary defence against the shadowy foes you encounter, works a treat.
Yet after all the hype, Alan Wake can't help but disappoint. It's no video game revolution just a great game that stands as one of the horror game highlights of the year so far. Like Uncharted 2, Alan Wake is familiar but good looking and damn good fun. Just forget the hype.