Alan Wake's American Nightmare is a action-thriller title in the Alan Wake franchise. The game was confirmed to be in development by Remedy Entertainment on 10 May 2011 and was released on 22 February 2012 as part of Xbox Live's House Party and was released on 22 May 2012 for PC.
American Nightmare is set as an independent game and does not reflect on the major storyline of the franchise. It only exists to broaden and expand the universe and while this may not be Alan Wake 2, Remedy have assured that this is not the last Alan Wake game and that there is another game in the works.
Act I: The Mechanic
The game opens up with Barry Wheeler sleeping in a motel room. The badge reveals that he is now the manager of the Old Gods of Asgard, and then the camera turns to the TV for an episode of Night Springs. Alan can be seen standing in a dark, murky place, pointing his gun and flashlight at whatever moves. The narrator explains that he is chasing "the herald of darkness", also known as Mr. Scratch. He hears him laughing in the distance, and turns to the noise, but does not see Mr. Scratch. Alan shouts to Mr. Scratch that he'll catch him eventually, but Mr. Scratch threatens him by saying he'll take away everything Alan loves. Alan is then engulfed by darkness, where he wakes up by a sunken and destroyed Bird Leg Cabin. He wakes up in a canyon in "Night Springs".
He picks up his flashlight , where poltergeist objects block his path, and he soon deals with them. He then picks up a 9mm pistol, where he encounters a couple of Taken. After dealing with them, he makes his way over to the motel, where soon, Taken come pouring out of the oil derrick. He runs to the motel, where he meets Emma Sloan, a mechanic. He asks her for the type-written page that she had found. She explains it had something to do with the oil derrick and a satellite. She also mentions about "creepy guys" she keeps seeing around the motel, and Alan says that he'll deal with them. She hands the page to him, where he makes his way to find the items needed; a Kasabian CD, a valve and a battery.
After he finds them, he needs the battery charged up, where he goes back to Emma to ask her to charge it. Once she does, he heads back up to the oil derrick. In order to stop darkness from pouring out of the derrick, he had to do what was on the page to rewrite reality, which was to turn the valve, have the CD playing in the CD player and turn the blinker lights on after inserting the battery. After he does so, a rock smashes into a satellite from space where it destroys the tower and lands outside the motel. The area lights up in flames, where he just manages to escape.
Once he returns to Emma, the garage is being attacked by Taken where he soon deals with them. Alan asks her about the man who looks just like him (Mr. Scratch) where she explains that there was some sort of party in one of the rooms. She doesn't know which room, but carries on to explain that he soon went to the diner where there was a fight. She gives him the keys to the diner which she just "happens to have on her". She tells him that she is going to leave as fast as she can, but Alan tells her otherwise, to which she does not listen. He then goes to find out what happened at the diner, only for Emma to be attacked by Taken and killed. After he's attacked by the motel sign, Alan enters the diner to find out there had been some sort of fight. He finds a hotel room key, and takes it to the correct room, only to find a dead man that Mr. Scratch had previously killed. He finds the observatory keys and makes his way to the observatory.
Act I: The Scientist
He makes his way up to the observatory, where he calls the button, only to be told to go away by a woman due to the trouble he apparently caused. After proving he is not the man that caused the trouble, she lets him in, where she introduces herself as Dr. Rachel Meadows. He asks her what happened when Mr. Scratch was with her, where she explains that there's a strange astronomical event happening, where it's messing up the satellite and projecting a strange signal. Alan says that the signal is what he is here for, and Meadows explains that it was what Mr. Scratch was there for too, but got very angry and sabotaged the imaging array. In order to try to get the signal again, she asks Alan to go to her car to get an imaging array for the telescope. Once he reaches her car and takes the imaging array, he is attacked by Taken Spiders. He makes his way back up to the observatory and replaces the imaging array. Unfortunately, everything malfunctions due to pressure, which Alan is asked to deal with. Once he's done that, he goes back to the observatory, only to be ambushed by numerous Taken. Once he deals with them, he goes back to Meadows, where she explains the signal is rather interesting, as if it was intended for them. Unfortunately, he only receives part of the signal from the print out machine, but takes what he can get for now. The signal is of a new reality and a road map he has to follow, which takes him to the Drive-In Theater.
Act I: The Curator
When he goes to the theater, he meets a woman in a room trying to seduce Alan. She has darkness in her head, and to remove that darkness, he has to go and turn the power on at the transformer yard. He is attacked by Taken unleashed by Mr. Scratch, who makes threats at him, and he soon defeats them and makes his way to the yard. He turns the power on at the yard, heads back to the woman at the guard station and turns on the lights, where the darkness goes away. She introduces herself as Serena Valdivia and tells Alan that Mr. Scratch was trying to get into the projector room, and was talking about fixing things to make the sun never come back up again. She hands Alan the access code, where he heads back to the projector room. Unfortunately, it's protected by security Mr. Scratch had set up, so Alan is forced to take them out. After, he heads into the projector room where he does what it says on the signal page.
Unfortunately, what he did wasn't enough to fix things and things start to haze up and turn into darkness. Mr. Scratch shouts at him from a distance, where he wonders what Alan is up to, telling him that he's going to take away everything Alan loves, including Alice. Alan demands Mr. Scratch shows himself, and once he does so, Alan is yet again engulfed by darkness.
Act II: Setback
Alan realizes he is back at the canyon. He heads back to check on Emma, who is a little confused on the whole "time loop" situation. She states how she faintly remembers something bad happening to her, and then tells Alan that she had all three items for him, but some Taken ran off into the old mine with the battery. Alan heads off to retrieve it, where he notices the cobwebs of the spiders. At first, spiders hide from him, but when he obtains the battery at the back of the mine, they begin to attack him. He runs back to the motel and asks Emma to charge the battery to which she does. He heads back up to the oil tower and puts everything in place and activates it all. The satellite falls out of the sky and destroys the oil tower once again, lighting up the area in flames. He begins to make his way back to Emma, where he remembers that at this point that she would be in trouble, only for him to be attacked himself throughout the flames. He deals with them and the Taken trying to kill Emma.
After he saves her, Emma states how she already has the keys for Alan to search the motel rooms for what he needs. As Alan tells Emma to stay put and to stay on the light, Emma agrees with him, only for the door to shut behind Alan as he leaves the garage. The Taken turn off the lights and kill her once again. Alan, helpless to save her, heads to the room with Michael Farabee in it and obtains the keys.
Act II: Progress
Alan drives to the Observatory once again, where this time, he remembers to pick up the imaging array from Rachel's car. He makes his way back up to the observatory and presses the buzzer, where Rachel at first tells him to go away due to her belief that he was Mr. Scratch, but then realizes from the previous encounter that it wasn't him. Baffled by this, he lets Alan in, and tells him to place the imaging array into the telescope. He replaces the imaging array, and tells Rachel to not start it up, since he has to do the coolant valves. This time, he only has to turn the primary valve. He makes his way there and turns on the primary coolant valves, only for a car to be thrown in his direction, but fortunately hits the fence and misses him. He makes his way back up to the observatory whilst being attacked by numerous Taken. He makes his way back up to Rachel, where she soon tells him that whilst the signal printout is still incomplete, it has more information than it previously did. Rachel, being a scientist, is still baffled by these sorts of events and assumes that everything may just be a delusion. Alan takes the print out and makes his way to the Drive-In Theater.
Act II: Relapse
Alan gets out of his car at the entrance to the theater, and enters the guard post to obtain the keys, where Serena is yet again under the influence of the dark presence and tries to seduce him. He manages to convince her otherwise and takes the keys to the gates so he can turn on the power. As he makes his way there, another tremor is created by Mr. Scratch in the car park, throwing cars and vans about. Mr. Scratch gets angry at what Alan is doing, but knows that it just will not work. Alan makes his way to the transformer yard where he spots cobwebs surrounding the area. He manages to turn on the power, where he is soon attacked by numerous spiders. He manages to escape them, and starts to make his way to the projector booth, only to be greeted by a slightly stronger version of Mr. Scratch's security force. Alan manages to beat it, ridding the darkness from the projector booth. Despite already knowing the code, Alan could either turn on the lights in the guard post to help Serena or go straight to the projector booth. He heads to the projector booth, where he has to turn the clock to late at night, the calendar to the end of the summer, have the lamp pointing at the fire extinguisher and have the film-noir Alex Casey poster visible. He follows what it says on the page, but yet again the environment darkens up. Alan realizes that this is not enough again, and is yet again trapped in an endless dark environment, being tormented by Mr. Scratch. Mr. Scratch yet again distresses his anger, and insists that Alan will not be able to escape his trap. Alan is then yet again spat out by the darkness and wakes up in the canyon yet again.
Act III: Resolved
Just as he makes his way back to the oil tower, he is greeted by a very large, but slow Taken, carrying a saw. He deals with it, and realizes that Emma had already set up the valve, put the CD in the jukebox and charged and placed the battery. All Alan has to do is activate them, to which he does. The satellite get again falls out of the sky and destroys the tower and lights up the area in flame. Alan is yet again attacked by more Taken, deals with them and runs off to help Emma, only to be greeted by more Taken. He defeats them, and helps Emma, who "knew" that Alan would help her, as awkward as that sounded to her. She opens the door to the garage, and tells Alan that she would not give him the keys to the motel rooms unless he stops the power from turning off if she is going to stay in the garage until sunrise. He makes sure the power is secure, to which Emma gives him the keys. He makes his way back to the room with the body of Michael Farabee and takes the keys.
Act III: Completed
He drives back to the Observatory for a third time, where Rachel tells Alan through the intercom that she already has the imaging array in place and that all Alan has to do is sort out the primary coolant valves. Just before he can secure them, he is ambushed by numerous Taken. He defeats them and manages to secure the pumps, only for the same car as before to be thrown at him once again. Fortunately, yet again, he is protected by the fence that breaks the cars fall. He makes his way back up to the observatory, where Rachel tells Alan that the signal is coming in loud and clear. Before he can obtain the signal however, the observatory is ambushed by Taken, where Alan has to hold off the Taken until Rachel can shut down the telescope in order to turn the lights back on. It takes her a couple of minutes, but she manages to do it, where all the Taken disintegrate from the light. He makes his way up to Rachel, who is actually very thrilled about the thoughts that time loops and strange shadowy men exist. Alan then takes the full signal printout from the printer and makes his way back over to the Drive-In Theater.
Act III: United
Alan arrives at the Theater, where this time, he starts at the back of the transformer yard, where he heads inside to turn on the power. Once he does so, he walks outside only to be ambushed by many Taken. He deals with them and begins to make his way back up to the projector booth. On his way there, he is threatened by Mr. Scratch who unleashes Taken on him. He deals with them and makes his way to the car park, only for Mr. Scratch's security to reactivate once again, only a lot stronger. He manages to defeat the security, and yet again he could either help Serena or go along with his plan. He heads into the projector booth, where he turns the clock to late at night, the calendar to the end of the summer, has the lamp pointing at the fire extinguisher and has the film-noir Alex Casey poster visible. On the page he reads for guidence, Alan learns that his wife, Alice Wake, had actually created a film about him. He places this film in the projector booth and turns the film on. With this, he changes reality by doing everything it says on the page. At first, Alice's film shows Mr. Scratch on it. Mr. Scratch appears before Alan on top of a car, and as the film is projected onto him, he slowly starts to burn away, where Alan has finally found the way to destroy Mr. Scratch. The film fades when Mr. Scratch is looking out at a view, where he slowly switches places with Alan. Alice see's Alan, where they hold each other in each others arms and share a kiss.
The camera fades with an interesting view, where on Alice's side on the screen, there is a yellow, bright sky, whilst on Alan's side on the screen, it is rather dark, with gloomy clouds.
The narrator states that the events that just unfolded could quite possibly be just a figment of Alan's imagination since he is still trapped in the dark place. After the credits roll, it is revealed that Alan's episode was named Return.
Post-credits, Barry wakes up in his motel room, calling out for Alan after he believes he heard him somewhere.
- Matthew Porretta (voice) and Ilkka Villi (body) as Alan Wake, a famous writer who once suffered with writers block. After saving his wife, Alice Wake, he remains trapped in the dark place, where media he creates come to life before his eyes.
- Matthew Porretta (voice) and Ilkka Villi (body) as Mr. Scratch, a doppelgänger of Alan who is hell bent on taking over his life and ruining the lives of others.
- Fred Berman as Barry Wheeler, Alan's former agent and best friend. He now manages the old folk rock band, Old Gods of Asgard.
- Brett Madden as Alice Wake, wife to Alan. During the two years since she was saved, she has created a film based on Alan's life.
- Christina Evangelista as Emma Sloan, a car mechanic who likes to refer to herself as a mystic.
- Yadwa as Dr. Rachel Meadows, a scientist who discovers that the stars are strangely aligned and are transmitting a message.
- Desi Sanchez as Serena Valdivia, a film maker and friend to Alice Wake.
- Lloyd Floyd and Cliff Carpenter as Anderson Brothers, two brothers who are part of the folk rock band Old Gods of Asgard and are managed by Barry Wheeler.
- Lloyd Floyd as Night Springs Narrator, the narrator to the Night Springs television show and narrator of the game itself.
- 12 achievements to earn on both the Xbox 360 version and PC version, worth 200G on the Xbox 360 version.
- 3 avatar awards to earn on the Xbox 360.
- A brand new feature, known as "Fight 'Till Dawn" which is an arena like mode where the player fights numerous types of Taken until dawn arrives (in ten minutes).
- Brand new weapons, including the nail gun, 9mm pistol, assault rifle, sawed-off shotgun, combat shotgun, the crossbow and mini-uzi's.
- Brand new Taken, such as "The Splitter", which splits into two Taken when light hits it and "The Birdman" who can turn from a flock of birds, and even Spiders.
- There is a new Old Gods of Asgard song, again performed by Poets of the Fall, called "Balance Slays the Demon". Poets of the Fall also performed "The Happy Song" as themselves.
- The single player campaign takes approximately 5 to 6 hours to complete depending on if the player chooses to look deeper into the story through searching the environment.
- Manuscript pages can work as currency in Single Player and Fight 'Till Dawn. Depending on how many manuscript pages you've found will depend on if you can unlock certain boxes and so forth.
- 53 manuscript pages to be found.
- Alan Wake
- Mr. Scratch
- Barry Wheeler
- Alice Wake
- Old Gods of Asgard
- Night Springs Narrator
- Night Springs, Arizona
- Fight 'Till Dawn
On 9 May 2011, a sequel game was hinted at when "Alan Wake 2" was shown on Althea Suarez Gata's CV. On the same day, the information was removed from her CV.
On 10 May 2011, Remedy told Joystiq, "So referring to your most recent Joystiq post... It's awesome to hear you say that Alan Wake appears in your hearts – I've read through all the responses on your site which is fueled with positive responses. It really would seem Alan Wake is very close to the hearts of the fans out there, and to ours too. To that point, it's a shame that this news leaked before our official announcement which will of course include the visuals and information to support it. Well, now that the cat is out of the bag, we owe it to you and the fans to shed a little more light before we get the chance to officially show them what the guys have been up to.
Fans of the franchise will be excited to learn that yes, more Wake is coming! But to be absolutely certain to avoid confusion, this next Wake installment will not be Alan Wake 2. But neither will it be DLC. The rest we're saving for our official announcement when we'll actually SHOW YOU. We are really excited about this project which a slice of our team has been working on for the last months. It's something that'll definitely give more to the Wake fans out there, but just as importantly, this installment will also give an opportunity for players who aren't familiar with the franchise to finally jump on board.
We can't wait to show you more, bear with us. Release dates, platforms and pricing are unconfirmed as of yet, but Fall 2011 is probably a good guess. More coming soon!".
It was revealed that a trailer for the new game will be shown at the Spike TV Video Game Awards 2011 on December 10. It has been speculated that the game will be an Xbox Live Arcade game named "Alan Wake's Night Springs". The first image for the game was released by GameInformer on 7 November 2011.
On 9 December 2011, the day before the VGA's, community manager Peter Papadopoulos posted a video on the Alan Wake Facebook of a manuscript page that read:
"I'm going to tell you a secret.
There are places in our world where fiction and dreams can come true, powered by the dark energies leaking from beyond.
These places are a battlefield in a war between the powers between light and darkness."
Just hours before the Video Game Awards, IGN released a brand new screenshot of the game.
The official title was revealed to be 'Alan Wake's American Nightmare'.
- The title "Alan Wake's American Nightmare", is most likely a reference to the phrase: the American dream; the chance to start a new life and fulfill your dreams. This may hint towards Alan's fight for his humanity and his life.
- In the final stage of the Desert Shore Motel you can find a telephone booth where you can listen to a recorded message from voice actor: Matthew Porretta, as he talks about his experience with a deer in The Deer Story.
- Although Thomas Zane didn't make any physical appearance in the game. He can be seen on a poster at the end of each time loop.
- The game follows the Manuscript entitled "Return". It is seen at the very end of the Credits, as read "Return" by Alan Wake
- The "Return" is the title of the manuscript Alan begins to type at the end of The Writer DLC.
- At the end of the credits, Remedy stated that more Alan Wake is on the way, with a final line at the end of the credits reading: "Alan's journey through the night will continue".