Alan Wake II

Silvanus

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I've only seen one David Lynch movie my entire life, and that is Dune. Other than see clips of specific movies or shows, I never sat down and watched any of them.
Dune is probably the Lynch film that is least representative of his work. Would highly suggest Mulholland Dr., which is a near-masterpiece of unsettling surrealism and visual, non-literal storytelling.
 

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Dune is probably the Lynch film that is least representative of his work.
Seeing clips from his other films, that was easy to figure out in my late teens.

Would highly suggest Mulholland Dr., which is a near-masterpiece.
When I find the time, I might give it a shot, but hold no promises. Thanks though.

 
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Casual Shinji

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Well if you ever do decide to jump in, my recommendation is Blue Velvet and Mulholland Drive, as they are the most concise, coherent, direct representation of his whole thing.
No Twin Peaks man? That seems to be the biggest inspiration Lynch-wise for Alan Wake ; Smal town Americana charm with a sinister, nihilistic undercurrent. I'm current trying to make my way through the first game (never having played it) in order to check out the sequel, and the recurring Night Springs show is very reminiscent of Twin Peaks' Invitation to Love soap opera bits.
 
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Casual Shinji

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Twilight Zone.
Ofcourse, but there's a goofiness to those bits that contrast with the serious stakes of the game, similarly to when Invitation to Love shows up in Twin Peaks.

There's even a Lamp Lady in the game, and if you've seen Twin Peaks I don't need to say who that's a play on.
 
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Ofcourse, but there's a goofiness to those bits that contrast with the serious stakes of the game, similarly to when Invitation to Love shows up in Twin Peaks.

There's even a Lamp Lady in the game, and if you've seen Twin Peaks I don't need to say who that's a play on.
I know about all the Twin Peaks reference, but the Night Springs show is literally just Twilight Zone.
 

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Ofcourse, but there's a goofiness to those bits that contrast with the serious stakes of the game, similarly to when Invitation to Love shows up in Twin Peaks.

There's even a Lamp Lady in the game, and if you've seen Twin Peaks I don't need to say who that's a play on.
“Got a light?”

“Why, yes. Yes I do” replies Allan.
 

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Alright, I finished Return 6 & 7, so I have to finish the game as Alan. It would be vice versa for Saga, if I did all of Alan's chapters first. Initiation 6 is nothing but an easy walk-a-thon, but I am not complaining. I am at Initiation 7, so this more than likely the final chapter. I am stopping for tonight, and will finish the rest tomorrow.
 

Old_Hunter_77

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No Twin Peaks man? That seems to be the biggest inspiration Lynch-wise for Alan Wake ; Smal town Americana charm with a sinister, nihilistic undercurrent. I'm current trying to make my way through the first game (never having played it) in order to check out the sequel, and the recurring Night Springs show is very reminiscent of Twin Peaks' Invitation to Love soap opera bits.
I adore Twin Peaks, But it's TV show, which means many hours. And also you have to deal with how season 1 is the classic, then the story ends abruptly in the beginning of season 2, then there's like 15 shit episodes (so actually like 50% of TP isn't actually good?) then the last episode is one of the greatest TV moments of all freaking time. And then Fire Walk WIth Me is complicated and then The Return which is pretty poop except episode 8 which is amazing.

Twin Peaks is almost anime-like in it being a whole.. thing. When I recommend things to people I'm conscious of their time and patience. Blue Velvet is 2 hours and Mullholland Drive is almost 2.5, the latter being pretty perfect every scene. That's why they're my recommends- they're one and done (though truly to appreciate MD one should watch it at least twice because after the first viewing the mystery gives way to the trick behind the whole movie).
 

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Finished the game. Definitely a long one. Overall, I like the game and do find it better than the first game. With that said, the game is still a bit gltichy, even with the patch updates. I had two soft locks, but all it took was simple checkpoint or load save to get rid of it. The story is even better and visuals are amazing! Remedy really put in all the stops for this title!

Pros:
  • The game takes a more survival horror open-ended approach.
  • The horror is actually effective and scary.
  • Saga Anderson and Alex Casey are a treat. I was really invested in her character and story. I won't spoil anything, but great job Remedy!
  • The Taken, while usually fewer in numbers, compared the first game, are much more threatening and harder to kill.
  • A kick ass and even better soundtrack.
  • Saga gets the best weapons.
  • The Best Modern AAA Silent Hill game you will ever play!
Cons:
  • It's easy to get lost, even with the maps you find in either campaign. Especially Alan's levels.
  • Alan's levels feel a bit more limited, having less enemy variety and puzzle gimmicks that get repetitive by the end game.
  • The weapon or power upgrades are pointless. You can get through the entire game without using them. I don't know why Remedy even bothered with this. It's like they looked at their last game, Control, and then RE4R, only to say "it worked for those game!".
  • Saga's Mind Palace is wasted potential and not really needed. Alan's Writing Room is better by comparison, but both are more or less giving you solutions you've more than likely already figured out. At least Alan's involve some form of puzzle solving and paying attention to the environment.
  • No NG+. I know it comes out in an update with a few months, but you all know me by this point.
  • No Physical version.
  • Most of the jump scares get annoying around the halfway point. A few good ones got me, but the rest were hurting my eyes or didn't scare me.
Good game overall, but it does have its issues. Long time Remedy and AW fans are going to love this either way. I am happy for them and Remedy.
 

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Summerstorm

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So. I think i am nearing the end here too. But wanted to make something of a pre-ending review.

This game drives me insane (I did take a week pause in between too.)

So:
Storywise and such: Really nice ideas as always. The point of interlocking the art, the story, the metanarrative within a game is pretty neat. (Even if i don't 100% agree with every decision made in the telling of the main story) The whole thing does remind me of one of my own projects and thoughts, when i, with some LSD, analyzed and meta-retold a "trip-report" as a shortstory musing on the inclusion of the music and media i consumed while high (Stacking creators and their creations into my own narrative, musing how we interact with, and influence each other, through basically storytelling. The "looping" and circular thinking is also 100% fitting to an lsd-trip.

Gamewise i do have massive problems with this though. (This is where my "The game drives me insane" comes from.)
Looting and pacing is mental. Usually there is no danger and you just explore the maps. Loot is spawned into containers. They take into account how much you have at your disposal at the moment, and if you have too much ammo/health items/grenades etc., it will stop giving you equipment. After i recognized that, with the frustration coming with that (They want to keep you low, but not empty all the time for artificial tension) i switched over too emptying out my inventory at the saferoom and bring back loot from the level (for later). This and hampstering in general fucked up my inventory.

Here is Saga's inventory at the moment:
This is after i threw away medical stuff too make room to be able to transfer the rifles over and such Sagasinventory.png
Too much of everything except ammo...
ALSO - The pacing is... well, totally not in synch with my expectations. We have sometimes whole chapters of an hour gameplay, three maps with two fights (~30 seconds total) I know this is more of an atmosphere-based thriller/horror game. But the approach works for me only so long. Game just gets tedious after a while (I am just running through (absolutly beautifully crafted) maps looking for and opening boxes, solving way too easy riddles which just seem to pad the time.

Also i am missing dialogues somehow. The characters very often don't tell people information or ask many questions i thought they should. (For example Alan's interactions with Tim, why doesn't Alan tell him what he thinks the Dark Place is... why are they not brainpooling?)

Other than that i absolutely loathe the NPC interactivity. It is painfully clearly a game. What i mean by that is: Just be "not alone" and take your time to watch the npc's for just 30 seconds: A guy just turning around snapping photos again and again: 2 Guys talk about deerfest for 10 seconds, then stare at each other and you silently for eternity afterwards. You have to willingly phase out those clearly "unprogrammed NPC" behaviour. Part of it is charmingly meta: Bright Falls / Watery and it's inhabitants ARE strange and bound by the story (AND ARE relegated to bit parts as backdrop for a horrorstory). But it is just too much.

On a pro side: Like i said the game looks awesome, the environment is cleverly and lovingly crafted. The effects are awesome. The incorporation of music is, as expected, maybe the best i have seen in a game. Just as the real-time incorporation of real footage, blending between ingame- and taped. Masterfully done.

I have just watched a short arthouse 70-80ies finnish psycho-thriller inside of a game in wich Sam Lake, creator of Alan Wake (the games), plays Alex Casey in this movie by Thomas Seine/Zane (The Filmmaker), who in turn plays Alan Wake (The Moviecharacter) - is now watched by Alan Wake (the Game-character), who might have been written by Zane (The Poet) and/or wrote Zane (The Poet) both in attempts to exit a looping spiral of causality of arts influencing real world and the minds of their creators, who before that created Alex Casey (The Novel-Character) and follows/assumed the role himself in an attempt to structure his movement through the metanarrative by "astral projecting" through a novel which present to the player as a game....

This is the shit i am 150% here for.

Also it was really well done. Stretch it to ~40 - 240 minutes and i will gladly watch it again. Produced by A24. Cinema next year: I am on board.
 
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New patch notes. When is that NG+ update coming? When the DLC hits? I'll be interested in other games already and long before getting there.


[h2]PATCH NOTES[/h2]
Global
  1. Made the player able to push certain movable objects that might block the progress when revisiting combat areas (just walk into them…).
  2. Fixed an issue where loading a save game during an enemy grapple would leave the player without movement controls.
  3. Fixed an issue related to the Nursery Rhyme doll "Father" disappearing if placed in the wrong location and the player saved their game.
  4. Fixed a rare issue where the player could not watch the Drowned video and thus was prevented from getting an Achievement / Trophy.
  5. Fixed an issue where auto-aim was not…auto-aiming correctly when Flashlight boosting a submerged Binder enemy.
  6. Fixed an issue where Saga couldn't shoot or damage an enemy hiding in the bushes after throwing a flare at the enemy.
  7. Fixed an issue where interrupting a charged shot by quickly selecting another weapon and then re-selecting the crossbow would launch the bolt without player input.
  8. Fixed an issue where an Echo wouldn't reset after the player leaves the area.
  9. Fixed an issue where the Dark Veil effect would be missing from Cynthia's boss fight after reloading a checkpoint.
  10. Fixed an issue where the Wake insight at the Caldera Street station didn't trigger.
  11. Fixed an issue where entering the Writer's Room during an elevator ride played a real number on preserving the correct game state.
  12. Fixed premature notifications of Koskela brother's commercials being available in the Mind Place (Good things come to those who wait.)
  13. Fixed Alan climbing next to the ladder when interacting with the ladder while opening a door.
  14. Fixed conversation interactions outside the Nursing Home not being consistently visible.
  15. After the Summoning boss fight, only Saga can pick up crossbow bolts (sorry, Alan)
  16. Improved the zoom function in Dioramas (such as Cultist stashes and Nursery Rhymes) and the Map.
  17. Optimized memory use to keep more cold, dead enemy bodies lying on the ground for added realism and spookiness.
  18. It is now possible to skip the Alice documentary.
  19. Corrected speling errors.
  20. (PC) Made the GPU crash dialog more user-friendly with understandable error messages for non-Remedy engineers and QA.
  21. (PC) Fixed switching from full screen to window occasionally resulting in wrong rendering resolution.

Performance


  1. (PC) Fixed performance and visual issues with Nvidia DLSS Frame Generation enabled when changing from real-time video to 3D rendering.
  2. (PlayStation 5 Performance Mode) Optimized performance when aggressively walking stairs up and down in the Nursing Home.
  3. (PlayStation 5 Performance Mode) Optimized streaming performance globally but predominantly around the hallways outside of room 666 in the Oceanview Hotel.
Animations and visuals


  1. Numerous lighting and visual fixes and related improvements.
  2. Fixed Alan's flashlight holstering animations when the writer is in a wounded state.
  3. Fixed Alan's flashlight holstering animation triggering even without having a flashlight.
  4. Fixed weapon-switching animations to work correctly when Alan is healing.
  5. Fixed an issue where forward running dodge animation was playing for too long.
  6. Fixed an issue where interrupting the manuscript pick-up animation by combat can lead Saga to stay in a broken animation state.
Audio

  1. Added missing localized VO audio for French and Japanese languages.
  2. Fixed an issue where in-world videos (including Koskela ads, Wake insight's, Alice videos, Darling videos, and Yoton Yo video) audio was sometimes out of sync.
  3. General audio fixes and improvements.

UI

  1. Fixed an issue where players could not select the inventory items on the far-right side of their inventory.
  2. Prevent the Shoebox from eating away players' items when they were stacked erroneously.
  3. Hacked OCD UI indicators in the Mind Place not clearing their "new" status.
  4. Added "Restore to Default" option to the Control Key Customization Tab.
  5. Improved the brightness calibration UI.
  6. General UI fixes and improvements.
Case Board
  1. Fixed an issue where Saga could only access the Case Board after Profiling but not via other Mind Place interactions.
  2. Improved automatically placing clues for already solved questions to the Case Board.
  3. Fixed a wayward Bright Falls station photo being in the distinctly wrong location on the Case Board.
Mission Specific

INVITATION
  1. Hid interactions while dialogue plays around the Nightingale murder site.
  2. Fixed a case where Saga is unable to pick up the pistol in the morgue corridor after waiting for a far longer time than we expected.
  3. Fixed Nightingale's profiling with "The heart! Where is it?" not skipping the entire sequence.
  4. Reduced chances of Nightingale ruining your day. Made the resourcing more generous for the Nightingale boss fight.
OLD GODS

  1. Fixed an issue where clearing the Mulligan and Thornton encounter didn't trigger the end cinematic, thus blocking progress.
SCRATCH

  1. Fixed an issue where Saga could not communicate the plan to agent Estevez. If you are not in the Bright Falls area, you must come back to trigger progress with the plan.
  2. Fixed a case where players could miss a phone call from Tor, preventing getting a missing piece of evidence and thus blocking progress in the mission.
  3. Fixed an issue where the conversation with Estevez would drone on after leaving the Sheriff's Station.
SUMMONING

  1. Made Alex Casey's loot drops spicier by having him biased toward two-handed weapon ammo for Saga ("partners to the end").
  2. Fixed a rare issue where a light array would disappear during the Scratch fight upon the player releasing the interaction button.
  3. Added more ammo for the mission's Alan Wake section, making the trek to the parking lot somewhat more bearable.
WE SING

  1. Fixed an issue with the Plot Board.
 

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Easy Allies with another late to the party review. I'm glad they don't brush their refuse out, but try more than almost a month.