Writer Sam Lake remembers the game’s rough development cycle.
It is easy to think of Alan Wake as Remedy’s cult classic hit that would, in many ways, define their work in the years to come. But the reality was that the game was thought to be vaporware at one point, first being announced way back at E3 2005. It would not actually release until 2010 for the Xbox 360, eventually getting a PC port. It’s not been clear what exactly happened to cause the delay, but now we have shed some light on a rather dark period for Remedy Entertainment.
Writer Sam Lake spoke to Ars Technica for their War Stories series. In it he breaks down that the core of the issues came from originally wanting Alan Wake to be an open world title, something you can see hints of in the original E3 2005 trailer. But the game they were trying to design could not translate to that, and eventually the company drifted far away from the concept and even with signing a publishing deal with Microsoft, struggled to get the project together into something functional.
Roughly three years into development, they finally decided to scrap the open world and built from there. While some of the ideas from that initial open world concept did survive, it eventually became the game we know today. There’s quite a bit more detail to the story, which you can check out below. It’s well worth the listen.
Alan Wake is available on PC as well as Xbox One through backward compatibility of the 360 version. It will come to Game Pass for both Xbox One and PC on May 21st.