EGX Coverage - Fireside Chat With Sam Lake
Article by Adam Ray
Any follower of my gaming content here on Fantastic Universes and any close friend of mine will know that I deeply love Alan Wake. At the phenomenal EGX this year, I had the distinct pleasure of informing Sam Lake about this, and hearing his many thoughts about the history of Remedy Entertainment and what to expect from Alan Wake II.
The original Alan Wake all the way back in 2010. That game generated an immediate cult classic status, with tie ins to its own strange expansion downloads, and the wider universe of other Remedy games. Lake often discussed that the story of the character Alan Wake is very similar to that of Remedy itself. A writer who had been very successful with one franchise (namely Max Payne in Remedy's case, who we've learned may be coming back very soon); and after a desire to change, they came up with an ambitious new horror story.
With new titles like Control and Quantum Break under their belt, they never gave up on making a sequel to our favourite mad, flash light toting, horror writer. In the world of games, Lake was worried that games would come and go, and never imagined Wake would have the cult following that it currently does.
This game has been thirteen years in the making, and thus they've had their initial concepts grow and evolve into the finished product coming out on the 27th. They're very committed to the survival horror genre. Compared to the original, there are bigger gameplay differences to up that genre theme. The original game's combat is consistent and repetitive; the items were limited and the types of enemies were recycled often. Wake II will mix thing up from the drop. Lake wanted to up the horror by slowing the pace, upping the atmosphere and exploration, slowing the combat and making it more tense with the resource management. All this tied up with a Mature rating to ensure they get the horror experience a sequel to this game should.
Remedy are deliberately pushing their limits to match the huge cult demands for Alan Wake II. Within the game itself, as many know at this point, there's a second playable character. Agent Saga Anderson is a member of the FBI trudging around Bright Falls trying to understand what happened to the reclusive writer and the strange goings on. Remedy are also now committed to their wider games universe. As we saw Alan Wake in the second DLC for Control, we can count on Jesse Fayden and the Federal Bureau of Control to make some relevant presence known in Alan Wake II.
This looks to be Remedy's most extreme title in terms of content. Lake said in his discussion, that Remedy has to be ambitious to compete in the market and Lake is ambitious with himself to keep the excitement up. The nature of the industry forces a smaller creator to be bigger, hence Remedy's willingness to create unique media, like their tie in to live action media or detailed motion capture.
Alan Wake II is set to release on October 27th, and I have not been more excited for a title release in so many years.