A thrilling new storyline, hordes of creepy enemies, serious firepower and beautiful Arizona locations, combined with a fun and challenging new game mode!
User reviews:
Mostly Positive (88 reviews) - 73% of the 88 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Mostly Positive (3,160 reviews) - 73% of the 3,160 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 22, 2012

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Includes 3 items: Alan Wake, Alan Wake's American Nightmare, Alan Wake Collector's Edition Extras


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About This Game

In this brand new standalone experience, Alan Wake fights the herald of darkness, the evil Mr. Scratch! A thrilling new storyline, hordes of creepy enemies, serious firepower and beautiful Arizona locations, combined with a fun and challenging new game mode make this a must for Alan Wake veterans, and the perfect jumping on point for new players!

Key Features:

  • Play the full-fledged Story Mode: You’ll be on the edge of your seat as you fight to stop your murderous evil double to take back your life... and change reality itself!
  • Fight till dawn arcade mode: In the action-packed Arcade Mode, you’ll need to master the Fight with Light mechanic to stay alive until dawn and beat your friends on the Leaderboards. Can you survive until sunrise?
  • Face the darkness: Twisted and dangerous enemies stalk you in the shadows. Dispatch them with the powerful arsenal of weapons at your disposal.

System Requirements

    • OS:Windows XP SP2
    • Processor:Dual Core 2GHz Intel or 2.8GHz AMD
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Graphics:DirectX 10 compatible with 512MB RAM
    • DirectX®:10
    • Hard Drive:8 GB HD space
    • Sound:DirectX 9.0c compatible
    • OS:Windows 7
    • Processor:Quad Core 2.66GHz Intel or 3.2GHz AMD
    • Memory:4 GB RAM
    • Graphics:DirectX 10 compatible or later with 1GB RAM
    • DirectX®:10
    • Hard Drive:8 GB HD space
    • Sound:DirectX 9.0c compatible
Customer reviews
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Mostly Positive (88 reviews)
Mostly Positive (3,160 reviews)
Recently Posted
( 19.3 hrs on record )
Posted: July 25
Great, now there's 2 washed up writers
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( 5.7 hrs on record )
Posted: July 22
A cool but rather short standalone from the game Alan Wake. It definitely has upgrades from the previous games. If you like groundhog day you like this.
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( 6.7 hrs on record )
Posted: July 22
it gets repetitive, but that's to be expected because you have to return to previous levels and reeneact setpieces, like an inelegant majora's mask. i think the short length helps because remedy games are at their core third person shooters with one notable hook that has to carry the whole experience, and that can grind you down ten hours in.

the b-movie tone of the game is great because it masks the menacing nature of mr. scratch (who was introduced at the eleventh hour in alan wake), and it's all pastiche, which is where remedy excels at writing.
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( 5.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 18
Shorter than a DLC, took me 5 hours to complete 100% of the story mode which consists of 3 levels that u need to pass 3 times each.
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( 7.0 hrs on record )
Posted: July 18
Don't get this expecting a full game. It's roughly a DLC, but the intro to the story is bundled in with the main game (the two Special episodes), so it gains an Arcade mode to add a bit of substance. A word of warning: for about the first third of the game, I was worried that it was utterly, inexplicably terrible. Luckily, it's not. It is, though, mediocre, a bit tedious, and lacks the charm and depth of the original.

The quickest way to explain it, in my mind, is that it feels like it was made by a different group with different priorities. Manuscript pages now unlock weapons, for no particularly well-defined reason. Ammo caches are scattered around the map, but this leads to some oddly low caps for items (5 flares, 5 flashbangs, 10 batteries). There's a bit more of an open-world feel, but the areas are small (you don't get a map, and realistically don't need one) and it leads to a lot of ugly invisible walls. There's a nice variety of new enemies, but generic enemies are basically all you fight (no 'boss battles' and just a few poltergeists). The villain is a fairly interesting character, but it feels like he doesn't really get his chance to shine (er, no pun intended - his TV bits are reasonably well done but his short appearances ingame are underwhelming).

Now, most of these are tradeoffs - there's plenty that's different, but it's not objectively worse. The real problem, as far as I'm concerned, is that the story and the overall flow of the game - which are pretty directly connected - just don't work this time around, certainly not in the way that they did so well in the original.

The entire game takes place in three areas, each of which has a living population of precisely one attractive woman, which considering that in theory Wake is doing all the writing is more than a bit weird (there's arguably an excuse for him, but then there's not for the developers). The central mechanic of properly 'setting up' significant story points from the manuscript is actually pretty neat, but it's hamstrung by another central mechanic which isn't explained well, runs contrary to the concept of Wake having to write a coherent story, and leads to a lot of the gameplay feeling like doing the same thing over and over again in a way that isn't particularly interesting.

If you're looking for some more refined Alan Wake gameplay, this is a neat little DLC. If you're looking for a worthy continuation of the story, you might actually want to stay away. Overall, I'll give it a hesitant recommendation; there's a decent game under it all - it's just not Alan Wake.
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( 10.2 hrs on record )
Posted: July 17
Though not as engrossing as the original, American Nightmare is still good and acts as a pseudo sequel that continues the plight of our writer hero Alan Wake, as he attempts to make it back to our reality after having saved his wife from the darkness beneath Cauldron Lake two years ago only to be trapped within the realm of darkness himself. Furthermore, he faces off against his greatest foe, himself! Well, not really himself, rather his evil, dark twin Mr. Scratch who managed to escape into our reality from the dark realm.

This game is much heavier on action, as such there is now an arcade action mode that has you facing off against hordes of the Taken until the sun rises, that's assuming that you last that long. The story mode is short but sweet and collecting the manuscript pages allows you to unlock more powerful weapons than those you're used to, such as an assault rifle and combat shotgun.

Though this will likely leave most Wake fans desparately wanting a true follow up to the first game, it's still worth checking out when you have the time.
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Ali Brie Conspiracy!
( 4.3 hrs on record )
Posted: July 16
It's fair to argue that it's okay if a game is short if it has variety and was a h---l of a time. But American(not just any) nightmare is neither. Due to the plot which is really because of time constraints and lack of effort(this did come out on Xbox Live Arcade after all)you'll be going to the same places multiple times doing pretty much the same thing. Quantum Break doesn't seem to do it and Alan Wake can't go much farther. Hopefully Remedys next IP is great
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( 10.3 hrs on record )
Posted: July 16
I adore Alan Wake however was seriously unimpressed with American Nightmare when the talking started. The cut-scene dialogue between characters is unassailably bad. Given my love for the source I persevered and started to come around thanks to the Alan Wake character and his actor's performance in narration, Mr Scratch (evil Wake doppelganger) TV clips and manuscript page readings. On the latter I hadn't really sought them out bar the ones in front of your face. As the game grew on me I decided to start again and seek out all manuscript pages because i) they're pretty interesting and ii) it spreads the game out and places the terrible character cut-scene dialogue less front and centre. This made my play-through eminently more enjoyable. Further to the exploration path, I actually enjoy the Alan Wake combat gameplay, more so with the over-the-top military arsenal American Nightmare provides.
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( 3.1 hrs on record )
Posted: July 13
It's a fun, short little game, same mechanics as the original game : Alan Wake. With a different, nice side-story and more weapons :)

Epic song from the game : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-SGqKUgaaw

Recomended if you have played Alan Wake ^^
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( 5.2 hrs on record )
Posted: July 13
Looking for all the manuscripts extends the playtime a little longer than it would take simply walking from objective to objective but all in all i'm happy with the amount of playtime i got out of it considering it was DLC.

Now it's certainly what you loved about the original game all over again, flashlights shooting and cheesy awesome horror writing. If i was going to say what's negative about it i'd have to say that the game is only 3 locations and i did feel i was getting mildly annoyed by backtracking essentially. However after i got this feeling i finished the game around 30 minutes later so i wouldn't consider it a big problem.

If you enjoyed the original and maybe just completed it, this will give you another 5 hours or so of alan wake goodness to sink your teeth into.
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Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
6 of 9 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 6
Great DLC game for an amazing game, really enjoyed this one. give it a go if you finished alan wake or if you like horror games.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 22
A cool but rather short standalone from the game Alan Wake. It definitely has upgrades from the previous games. If you like groundhog day you like this.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
5.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 18
Shorter than a DLC, took me 5 hours to complete 100% of the story mode which consists of 3 levels that u need to pass 3 times each.
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
17.0 hrs on record
Posted: July 5
This was pretty fun. Game kinda gives off the twilight zone.. New enemies, weapons, and a story that will mess with your mind.. The story is about 3 hours long and collecting a the scripts is a must due to scripts you collect go to arcade mode. This game mainly focuses on arcade mode. 10min survive and get a high score.

ammo boxes
enemies flank you
nice detail
voice acting

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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
7.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
Altough it's short lived, it's pretty fun while it last.
Its got a decent story (not as good as the original) the same base combat but with a lot more weapons.
Pretty good replayability, mainly to get all the pages, which unlocks more powerful weapons.
It's got arcade mode which is my favorite thing about the game. It's a lot like mercenaries from Resident Evil, just Alan Wake style.

It's no Alan Wake 2, but it's a good game in my book.
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
19.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 25
Great, now there's 2 washed up writers
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
111 of 131 people (85%) found this review helpful
47 people found this review funny
10.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 5, 2015
If the original game is a stephen king book, this is a quentin tarantino movie.
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67 of 75 people (89%) found this review helpful
3.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 31, 2013
American Nightmare is a fun combat focused episode set between the original game and the not-yet-if-ever-released sequel. In this chapter Alan is trying to escape from the Dark Place by writing a script of a twisted TV show, where he can alter reality and defeat his doppelganger, Mr. Scratch as he tries to take over Alan's life in the 'real world'.

The game brings some fixes of its prequel. The horrible and non-reactive controls are - fortunately - things of the past. It's a much more combat focused game, which is proven by a wast array of weapons you can find, from UZI to combat shotgun. The game introduces some - though not many - new elements and mechanics. There are new enemies like the Splitter, who splits into two when your flashlight is pointed at him. The area map and HUD are reworked, where scripts and points of interest are indicated. It's a nice addition since on the contrary of the first game, here you are encouraged to find those "damn" sheets of papers. You can get better weapons and it is fun, too.

While Alan Wake's story was controversial but well written, the same can't be said about this chapter. It sometimes feels rushed and underdeveloped. At least the ending is much more clearer now. The part where the game disappoints the most is the level design. There three only three levels non of which are large to say the least. In addition to this, each of the levels are reused 3 times. In the frame of the story it is understandable but still disappointing. To make it clear, it is not a full fledged game, but neither is a rip off DLC. It's something between, a full game with arcade length.

Alan's newest script shouldn't take longer than 4 hours to finish (6 with all the collectibles). Be aware though that normal in this game is easy compared to the prequel, so if you are up to it, try Nightmare difficulty. This can be explained by the combat focused nature of the game. You'll never have to roam trying to find ammunition and your flashlight recharges a lot faster than in the first game. There is a new game mode called Arcade Challenge. It's a simple addition where you have to survive until dawn and score as many points as you can with limited ammunition. You can squeeze a couple of extra hours out of this game mode, but don't expect dozens of hours of fun. On one side this game mode should have been in the first game, but with those horrid controls nobody would've played it.

Alan Wake's American Nightmare is not a propel sequel to Alan Wake but it's a nice side story which every fan will enjoy. The game falls short in some places to the prequel (story, level design) but bests it in other areas (controls, combat).

Rating: 71/100; Replay Value: 2/5; To Beat: 4 hours; Played on: normal.
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52 of 59 people (88%) found this review helpful
7 people found this review funny
83.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 31, 2015
Picture this, if you will, gentle reader; a man plunged into a twisted nightmare of his own design. Stalked by otherworldly horrors and mocked by his dark twin, the embodiment of the worst in him, the man must unlock the secrets of enlightenment or be doomed to repeat his mistakes again and again in his shrouded vision of strange goings on in rural America, made flesh. Did you picture it? Because that’s Alan Wake’s American Nightmare; a brazen send up of The Twilight Zone from the perspective of its hapless writer.

Having not played the previous Alan Wake, American Nightmare would have to serve as an introduction to Alan’s world, and as a standalone adventure, it’s very accessible. There are some vague references to the events of the prequel, but AN can be picked up without any confusion. American Nightmare comes across a little bit like an inverse Max Payne, which is not hugely surprising, considering Remedy made them both. Even some of the stock “this door is locked!” sound effects are recognisable as the same, which isn’t to say the two titles are carbon copies, because they’re closer to distorted mirror images, aptly enough.

Unlike Max Payne, Alan’s not an ex-CIA genetically engineered astronaut cowboy; he’s a writer. Or so he likes to keep telling everybody. He does precious little actual writing, unless you count the rewriting of reality, and even then he plays it safe by working off his old hits.

While Max Payne was about gratuitous slow motion gun play, AN is about frantic torch shining and panicky self defence. Whereas Max Payne had surreal Twin Peak-esque horror lurking on the fringes through blurry TV sets, and the funny as hell, worst thing I can think of drug fuelled delusions of Max’s entrapment in his own narrative, these things take centre stage as Alan Wake really is trapped in a fictional world of his own devising, while his evil mirror image runs amok in the real world, the real world as we know it being snippets of radio shows and TV clips, courtesy of the murderous doppelganger channel.

Despite Alan’s insistence at being a writer, his tools of the trade seem to be less the pen, and more the gun and torch. With this in mind, much of the game’s tension comes from Alan’s lack of superhuman abilities; he can’t effortlessly evade bullets, getting out of the way of danger is hard and takes precision. Nor is Alan a killing machine. His greatest weapon might just be the light, his trusty torch being the bane of The Taken; the darkness infused menagerie of slasher movie caricatures and monster mash clichés that really don’t like Alan’s annoying habit of having a pulse.

The Taken, as avatars of darkness, hate the light, and this light vs. dark conflict is central to American Nightmare. In fact the ideas of motifs and symbols themselves are central to American Nightmare.So when Mr. Wake uses his miraculous ability to focus his torch’s beam, The Taken stop dead in their tracks, unless something untoward occurs, like the fiends splitting in half, which is most ungentlemanly. That The Taken need to be exorcised of the darkness protecting them before they can be dealt with adds a clever twist; the only thing standing between you and undiluted evil is an AAA battery.

Having this everyday item be the only thing keeping death at bay is an effective vehicle for ramping up the pressure as it plays on and prolongs anticipation of the conflict, which is classic horror movie fare. AN excels at creating these back to the wall, dead end scenarios, where the pressure is steadily piled on, as Alan is encircled by mobs intent on redecorating the great outdoors with his insides.

It’s not so easy for Alan to outrun them, though he may find shelter in one of the various rejuvenating street lamps, fonts of light that they are. If Max Payne is John Woo, then Alan Wake is John Carpenter (minus all the synths), and American Nightmare absolutely nails the horror movie atmosphere of the relentless supernatural force bearing down on the stubborn everyman, with the only thing protecting him being some flimsy mystical rules.

American Nightmare isn’t outright scary, but it is stressful in a perversely enjoyable sort of way, and competently eerie. This eerie nature is due to a mix of deserted locales, the tense combat situations that constantly threaten to pop up, and the convincingly acted aforementioned video diary from Mr. Scratch, the bad Alan. For all its serial killer bravado and fear of the dark, American Nightmare’s most unsettling aspect is how subversive it is.

Part of the game revolves around finding manuscripts, each entry shedding more light on the story, which neatly justifies the hunt for them. The earnest journal entries tend to be more engaging than Alan’s purple prose, and the implications that maybe he’s not actually that great a writer, until the line starts to blur between fact and fiction within the narrative, which in a completely organic way, questions the nature of sentience, reality, free will and fate, and even the role of fiction.

American Nightmare features some deceptively excellent writing which dawns on the player as a revelation through the barely concealed s♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ of the narrator’s periodical spiel about champions of light and how ‘this could be anywhere in America’.

Mechanically, AN isn’t very complex, but it is both tense and engaging. The ‘puzzles’ if you can dare call them that, seeing as there’s no actual puzzling to be had beyond ‘push button until solved’, are basically exercises in connecting Alan’s occupation to in game activities. They work thematically, but they aren’t challenging. Even the scavenger hunt for manuscripts is sign posted when you get nearby. The only real challenge in terms of the game itself is the combat, which is helpfully extended into Arcade Mode, a last stand survival mode at one of multiple classic horror movie locations, and the source of lots of replayability.

Though it might be seen as hand holding, American Nightmare doesn’t want you to get frustrated exploring for paper, just like it doesn’t want you to get annoyed with overly confusing puzzles. It wants you to experience its story, it wants you to be engaged by its concepts, and it wants you to be drawn into its world (so your evil double can take your place).

Alan Wake’s American Nightmare is massively repetitive. It’s repetitive. Repetitive. But that’s not a bad thing! American Nightmare is centred around a very tightly honed combat design and central motifs that are introduced, reintroduced and then exploded. Events never let up, and AN is paced without hesitation and only gains momentum as it progresses. There’s really very little time to even think about getting sick of proceedings. Its repetition is central to its theme and is never monotonous.

It doesn’t hurt that the gun play is extremely well realised, with each weapon feeling distinctive, and even, dare it be said, approaching realism. The animation also, bar the occasional ‘I’m looking at the ceiling’ conversation standby is great. Overall, American Nightmare is highly polished, with a consistently good quality in everything it does. It’s not the deepest game out there, but it strikes an admirable balance between cerebral thematic content and a pinpoint focus on action and atmosphere and the relationship between the two.

American Nightmare doesn’t hang around, but it doesn’t need to either. Judge this book by its cover; just make sure the cover you’re thinking of is an Americana doused, enjoyably knowing schlock-fest, with a surprising philosophic tinge.
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123 of 173 people (71%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
7.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2014
I enjoyed the original Alan Wake immensely: for me it is still one of the prime examples of how an action-adventure 3rd person game can be made into an exciting and scary experience. So I started playing Alan Wake's American Nightmare with high expectancies, but quickly the game let me rather down own this. American Nightmare is not really a sequel nor a prequel to the original, it's more like a standalone game on the same "universe", but on a much smaller scale, so in the end it felt like some sort of expansion pack to me, using the same protagonist, game mechanics and of course game engine.

This engine still stands firm and delivers more than decent graphics: it's great in creating an atmosphere thanks to superb lighting, something which the original game used to immensely scaring effect. Although graphics are fine in this new installment, the actual gameplay is not. It felt almost painful to see the original game's tension and feeling of being utterly desperate while fighting off the forces of darkness turned into some Rambo-like experience. In the original game, guns, ammo and the ever-important batteries for the flashlight (sometimes it was the ONLY weapon to fight of enemies) were so scarce at moments that it almost drove me crazy, but the feeling of relief and accomplishment after finally getting further in the story, was all the more satisfying for it. American Nightmare uses the same game mechanics, but provides such an arsenal of over-powerful weapons, an almost endless supply of ammo and a flashlight that recharges in a matter of seconds. As a result of these changes, the entire gaming experience changed from an exciting horror adventure to a lacklustre shooter where I just blasted my way past hordes of enemies. Were it not for the obvious comparison to the original game, I'd probably have enjoyed American Nightmare a bit more, especially since after finishing the story there are a number of arcade-levels where the goal is just to get as many kills and as high a score as possible. These are played on fairly large and well-developed maps, and felt like playing more natural than the story.

The story, perhaps the main protagonist in the original Alan Wake, is perhaps the weakest point in this newer installment. It's made coplex in an unnatural feeling way and lacks focus. But most problematic of all, it forces the player to play through the three locations (only three!!) three times, each time "altering history" a little bit, but in the end this feels more like a gimmick and the net result is simply too repetitve a game.

I'd loved to give this game a heartily recommendation as a worthy addition to the brilliant original one, but it really fails to do so. As it stands, it's not a bad game, but it did not live up to my expectancies at all.

Gameplay: 15/30
Graphics: 14/20
Sound: 8/10
Technical: 6/10 (it felt like being slower and less well optimized)
Replayability: 6/10 (SP only, but the arcade levels add some extra challenges with leaderbords)
Steam integration: 5/10 (no cards, a small bunch of achievements, while the original game really shined here)
Personal appreciation: 4/10

Overall score: 58/100
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