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Alan Wake PC vs Xbox 360: Gah! So pretty on max settings


Feb 21
// Dale North
I spent some time with Alan Wake on my beastly [brag] PC rig (featuring dual Nvidia GeForce GTX 580 cards) last night, running this already pretty game on max settings. As you'd imagine, it looks sooo much better th...
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Alan Wake PC recoups costs within 48 hours


Feb 20
// Jim Sterling
Oh PC gaming, that hotbed of piracy where developers can never make any money. That's where Remedy was able to make back all of its porting and marketing costs for Alan Wake within a 48-hour period. DAT PIRACY! The game becam...

Review: Alan Wake's American Nightmare

Feb 20 // Maurice Tan
Alan Wake's American Nightmare (Xbox Live Arcade)Developer: Remedy EntertainmentPublisher: Microsoft StudiosReleased: February 22, 2012MSRP: 1200 Microsoft Points ($15) Following the events of Alan Wake's finale and the novelist's subsequent dark adventures in The Signal and The Writer, Alan has made his way back to yet another piece of Americana: desert-ridden Arizona. During his absense, Alan's dark half Mr. Scratch has been running amok in the "real world" and continues to grow ever more powerful. Tonight, it's time to put an end to his rule of malice. Tonight, evil lurks in Night Springs. [embed]222126:42741[/embed] American Nightmare follows the structure of an episode of The Twilight Zone or The Outer Limits, inspired by the supernatural and science fiction pulp action genre, as Alan tries to piece together a final solution to rid the world of Mr. Scratch. From a roadside diner and motel, to a mountain observatory and a drive-in, Remedy has once again tried to portray an easily identifiable world within a world and succeeded. Environments are somewhat more open than the largely confined areas seen in Alan Wake, and finding manuscript pages, which now also unlock better weapons, encourages exploration. Before long, you start to notice that there are far more missing manuscript pages than you can find in a level, even when sweeping it extensively. There's a simple reason for this, and it's not one that everyone is going to like: American Nightmare's story mode makes you retread the same levels multiple times before its conclusion. Each time, enemy encounters become more challenging, new types of enemies are introduced, and new collectibles can be found. Different and new paths through the levels also present themselves, although this difference can be marginal at best. There's a story-related reason for returning to this familiar ground and the characters who inhabit these levels add to the intrigue somewhat. Even though you won't just be doing the same thing multiple times in a row, it can become a bit too familiar before the journey is over. Thankfully, this repeated journey is an enjoyable one. I seem to be one of the few people who didn't have any problems with the controls and combat in Alan Wake, but combat is definitely a bit tighter this time around. Largely due to the new weapons and the faster regeneration speed of the flashlight -- which also renders the use of batteries mostly obsolete -- you'll find yourself lighting up and blasting Taken without too much trouble. A few new insectoid and raven classes of Taken may prove to be troublesome if you have existing phobias; hell, you might even develop a few new ones along the way. Some other new enemies include a Taken that launches darkness grenades at you, the Splitter who splits into two smaller versions if you focus your beam on him, and a The Hills Have Eyes type of mutated hillbilly giant who wields a buzz saw. Some of these new enemies don't exactly fit in the darkness-infested altered reality of the original Alan Wake, but Alan is trapped in a Night Springs story (the fictional Twilight Zone-style show in the Wake universe), so it's easy enough to overlook in favor of improvements on the gameplay. Although American Nightmare is billed to be accessible to new players, it's still largely tailored to fans of the original game. Manuscript pages fill gaps for those new to the Alan Wake universe, but this self-contained spin-off story still picks up some time after the last "special feature" piece of downloadable content, The Writer, and many allusions to the original can be found in radio shows, cutscenes, and TV viewings. You don't need to be an Alan Wake veteran to enjoy it, but it most definitely helps. Since Alan is supposed to be trapped inside an episode of Night Springs (or is he?), TV sets will no longer show you the little Night Springs episodes when you turn them on. Instead, you'll find Mr. Scratch talking to you through the magic of live action video. Mr. Scratch is brilliant as a Alan's psychopathic alter ego made flesh, and serves as one of the more believable and memorable examples of a purely evil videogame antagonist in recent history. He is Wake's version of George Stark in Stephen King's The Dark Half, a tale alluded to often in American Nightmare. These little videos also add a lot of character to create a more tangible opponent -- something Alan Wake was missing -- and what Mr. Scratch is lacking in mystery compared to the Dark Presence in the original game, he more than makes up for with sheer evil. Besides the new story and updated combat, a conceptually brilliant mechanic sees the light of day in American Nightmare. Alan can now reshape reality by recreating a setting to match his manuscript pages, which triggers an event that was not supposed to happen according to Mr. Scratch's plans. For the first time since you were able to turn words into objects by shining your flashlight onto them in Alan Wake and its DLC, you finally get to put your often hinted-at powers to work and really play as the creative artist who can wield the power of creation to combat the Dark Presence's influences. As innovative and ambitious as the mechanic sounds, however, it's sadly underused and underdeveloped. Instead of being able to actually be creative with this weapon of creativity, altering reality through the process of exerting free will and breaking the chain of predetermination, you end up following a streamlined design. The act of reshaping reality is as simple as walking to markers on your map to press a button, until a setting is deemed complete enough to allow you to progress. It's a shame, since the first time you see the results of your reality-reshaping actions alongside a booming soundtrack, your mind is overwhelmed with the sheer possibilities of such a mechanic within the Alan Wake universe. The second time you do it, it's a case of déjà vu. The third time, it's Groundhog Day. Since American Nightmare acts as both a continuation of the story and a self-contained spin-off experiment, this is definitely one of the key aspects we'll want to see further explored in the future of the franchise. Given the limitations of a downloadable title, it's understandable that Remedy didn't take this all the way, but it fits the Wake universe so perfectly that just a taste of it is simply not enough. Through your repeated journey, you'll meet characters with whom you can interact a bit more than before. The voice acting of the second character you'll meet is cringeworthy, as is her mindboggling insistance on holding her arms in creepily peculiar position that is as robotic as her voice. While you are talking to these characters, you're free to walk around a bit as you go through the motions of a conversation, leading to a lot of cases of jumping around and aiming your gun at their faces while you're telling them not to be afraid. Still, American Nightmare manages to make a hipster girl sexy against all odds, so it deserves credit for that. What criticisms one can raise against American Nightmare's story mode tend to vanish while playing the game's third act, as increasingly tense combat encounters are accompanied by rock music and ramp up the pacing to the finale. It's during this last act that all the elements of gameplay, visuals, and music start to fully work together, and it's only then that you finally reach a state of perfect flow while playing it. Even the matter of going through the same levels is eventually forgiven as everything falls into place -- it's almost the complete opposite of the third act in any Stephen King storyline. Moreover, the title looks and feels like a full-fledged title. While it's not quite as long as Alan Wake was, it's equally as satisfying most console shooters' campaigns. By the time you finish it, you have to remind yourself that it's "only" an XBLA title. The story mode is worth the price of admission alone and it's a no-brainer for Wake fans to pick it up just to see more of their favorite hero, but American Nightmare also offers a new "Arcade Action" mode called Fight Till Dawn. More like Mercenaries and less like a Horde mode, this is where you'll improve on the combat skills you may have honed while beating the harder difficulties of the original game. Five levels give you ten minutes to blast through as many waves as possible for the highest score. Every time you shoot or dodge an enemy, your multiplier bar increases. Get hit, and you lose all your multiplier progress. It's a frantic mode that forces you to never get hit if you want to compete on the leaderboards, and one that you'll quickly find yourself playing for an hour here and there. Even though the new weapons feel like overkill for Wake veterans in the story mode, their relative strengths and weaknesses come to fruition in this Arcade mode. It also highlights the occasional dysfunction of your dodge move, unfortunately. This dodge move is key to maintaining and increasing your multiplier during large group encounters, but can also be a bit fickle about working as advertised. Occasionally it will let you down like a childhood friend during times of crisis when you thought you could count on it. After putting a couple of days into Arcade mode, you will learn to work around it, turning the dodge move into a somewhat flaccid extension of your virtual persona, like a numb arm you flail around as a last resort against an oppresive foe of darkness. Once you've performed well enough in the standard five levels, you can unlock their Nightmare difficulty versions that start you out at a different location on the map, and mixes up weapon and ammo locations. Any player who doesn't get enough of a challenge from the story mode will get his ass kicked in these Nightmare levels. The levels are far darker, there is only one escape zone of light to regenerate your health, and waves keep spawning regardless of your progression. It's no small feat to survive one of these levels, let alone reach a high score, and despite the odd annoying Taken grenadier who can regularly hit you out of the blue thanks to the lack of a proper grenade indicator, this is by far one of the tensest experiences you'll find on the Xbox 360's entire digital platform. Arcade mode is a very welcome addition overall, especially since most of American Nightmare is lacking in the mystery and brooding atmosphere that Alan Wake had plenty of. The renewed focus on better combat and high octane action empowers Mr. Wake beyond the weak and shaken physical and mental survivalist of the original. Then again, Alan has already fought his fears and claimed victory over a smoke monster, his irrational Ego, and a thousand Taken, so he is ready to kick some ass this time around. Having said that, anyone who claims there is no tension to be found at all has simply never played any of the Arcade mode levels on Nightmare. Alan Wake's American Nightmare is as close to a full console title as we've seen on Xbox Live Arcade to date. Its story mode is fun foray into the twisted universe of Alan Wake, even if some of what's going on won't always make complete sense to any but the most dedicated of fans. Remedy has admirably tackled the repetitive nature of the campaign in order to get the most out of the the content they had, although it does start to wear thin at the midway point. Thankfully, a strong final act and a ridiculously addictive Arcade mode more than make up for it. For the hardcore Alan Wake fans, there is a lot to love in this new title. You can enjoy it fully without knowing about everything that happened in the original, the DLC special features, and the expanded universe from the Limited Edition book, but you are most definitely rewarded for having stuck with Alan in his past adventures. If anything, my main gripe with American Nightmare is that it shows Remedy can take the Alan Wake series to places that could blow us away if someone would just give them the resources to create another full retail title, yet we are only allowed glimpses of various mechanics and experiments in their downloadable titles to date. If that makes you think it's not worth playing, think again. Alan Wake's American Nightmare is a worthwhile expansion to the novelist's saga and one that you'll come back to time and time again, quite literally until the break of dawn.
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Ask any fan why they like Alan Wake, and you'll hear different stories. Some will talk about how they enjoyed the Stephen King, Twin Peaks, and Lost inspired storyline and setting. Others will laud the tense experience on the...

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Alan Wake's American Nightmare video prepares for launch


Feb 17
// Jordan Devore
With Alan Wake's American Nightmare almost upon us, it's time for a mood-setting launch trailer. Fitting voice-over work, plenty of slow-mo dodges, and a pack of oversized spiders -- yeah, this is pretty good. The game may n...
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Alan Wake on PC: Launch, tech features detailed


Feb 02
// Dale North
Alan Wake will hit Steam on February 16 and will follow a bit later at retail in something they call a "game box." Pricing is confirmed at $29.99 on Steam. What you'll get with this PC version is high-res graphics and support...
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The DTOID Show: Anthony Carboni's American Nightmare


Feb 01
// Tara Long
Happy Hump Day, fellow humpers! In celebration of humping, tonight's episode will be strictly devoid of humping. You're welcome. On tonight's show, we relay the good and bad news surrounding Dragon's Dogma, give a run-down o...
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Boxed PC version of Alan Wake also on the way


Jan 26
// Jordan Devore
Despite boxed copies of PC games being largely irrelevant to many of us for years now, someone is still buying these things. We know that Alan Wake will see a release on Steam sometime next month, and now Nordic Games has ste...
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Alan Wake finally makes it to PC next month


Jan 22
// Fraser Brown
It's taken over six years, a canceled version and a petition, but Alan Wake is finally coming to PC this February. And some people though the wait for the Xbox 360 version was a long one. Remedy revealed its month of release ...

CES: Alan Wake's American Nightmare kicked my ass

Jan 11 // Conrad Zimmerman
Today at CES, I had the chance to check out the game's arcade mode which pits Alan against waves of increasingly dangerous enemies which he must stave off until dawn. The stage I played was set in a graveyard and a pretty large one at that. Weapons are scattered around the environment along with the occasional safe haven, lit areas underneath lamps which will provide temporary respite and refill Alan's health before flickering out. The combat system follows the same pattern as before. Enemies are protected by darkness which must be burned off using a flashlight before they are rendered vulnerable to attack. Gamers already familiar with Alan Wake are in for a surprise or two, though, as new enemy types will require you to switch up tactics. The grenadier, for example, keeps his distance and uses explosives to ruin Alan's day. Even more insidious are the Splitters. These enemies aren't coated in darkness at all and can be immediately killed. But if you focus your flashlight on them, they'll multiply and become even more of a pain in the ass. Toss one or two of those into a group of regular enemies and it's very easy to wind up with an uncontrollable mob on your hands. The combat is also more frantic than ever. Enemies are much more aggressive and the pace of the game is very quick. Even as an experienced player, American Nightmare ripped me a new one and neither of my two attempts to survive the ten minute round met with success. That's a good thing and I expect that the end result is going to be one hell of a good time to play. Remedy couldn't give us a firm date on when we'll get to play the game in its full glory, as Microsoft has yet to reveal the order in which the House Party titles will hit XBLA (natch). All I can do is expect to be shining a light in the darkness sometime in late February or early March.
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I was a big fan of Remedy's Alan Wake. But one of the less thrilling aspects was the combat, which never really evolves much throughout the game and begins to feel a little like a chore the longer you go. My solution to ...

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The DTOID Show: Tara Long's Pokemon Nightmare


Dec 19
// Tara Long
Greetings, travelers! The Destructoid show is back for its regularly-scheduled Monday episode, and boy, have we got news for you! (The answer is yes, in case you were wondering.) First up, Alan's Wake's American Nightmare is...
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Alan Wake's American Nightmare's arcade mode, Q1 '12 date


Dec 19
// Dale North
Alan Wake's American Nightmare sounds like a good time, and this newly announced arcade mode sounds like an even better time. The "Fight till Dawn" mode of AWAN has Wake stuck in a battle where he has to survive a full night ...

Preview: Alan Wake's American Nightmare

Dec 19 // Wesley Ruscher
Alan Wake's American Nightmare (Xbox Live Arcade)Developer: RemedyPublisher: Microsoft Game StudiosRelease: 2012If the original Alan Wake was the perfect accumulation of the psychological thriller, American Nightmare hopes to do the same for fans of pulp-action. Inspired by the likes of Quentin Tarantino and films such as From Dusk Till Dawn, Alan Wake's latest decent into madness turns the action up to eleven while still maintaining  Remedy's penchant for atmospheric storytelling. Taking place in the Arizona desert town of Night Springs, fans of Alan Wake might remember its name from the Twilight Zone-esque program that could be watched throughout the original. See early in Wake's career, that talented author lent his skills to writing a few of the show's episodes. And now, not only does Wake find himself trapped in this strange town, but also reliving the events of his past work. To make matters even worse, Wake's evil doppelganger (called Mr. Scratch) is tormenting him, leaving behind video messages, while on the hunt for his wife Alice. Similar to the first game, these videos are portrayed with live actors -- capturing that Sega CD era FMV vibe. The only scene I witnessed was expertly done and strangely enough, made the supernatural serial killer extremely likable. Hopefully, there are a good amount of these scene in American Nightmare, as they are by far the highlight of the narrative. American Nightmare's story has all the fixings -- from the limited amount I was shown -- to satisfy the staunchest of fans. My only complaint with the delivery of the story was in the somewhat stiff character performance that took place between Wake and the woman seen below. Similar to the first Mass Effect, each character just stood in place, fairly motionless, as they talked to each other about all the strange occurrences going on. I'm optimistic if this will be addressed, but thankfully everything else, especially the combat, is animated beautifully. Speaking of the combat, the action in American Nightmare is faster, more frantic, and even more intense than its predecessor. The compelling light versus dark mechanic is back, but has been greatly improved upon to hopefully attract a wider range of players. New exotic weapon types, wilder enemies -- with even more aggressive behaviors -- and a more dynamic and destructible world help create a thrilling pulp-action environment.My favorite of the new weapons, by far, is the nail gun. Similar to an SMG, it quickly rips through foes and offers a decent amount of "rounds" per clip. With more sinister enemy types -- such as ones that continue to split into smaller and faster beings -- having a weapon that can spray a lot of ammo rapidly comes in quite handy when things get hectic. For the more careful shot, there is also the crossbow which hurts enemies even without the aid of light. It's slow to reload, but packs one mean punch. While the eyes-on demo I witnessed was clearly built to showcase the games improved combat, there's still a balance created for fans of the original. For starters, the folks at Remedy made it clear that there is plenty of optional story content -- extra dialog amongst NPCs, manuscript pages, and radio programs -- for those looking to connect the dots to Wake's endeavors in Bright Falls. Music, as well, also still plays a big part in American Nightmare, with licensed tracks -- like Kasabian's Club Foot -- supporting some of the game's most suspenseful moments. Perhaps the biggest addition to American Nightmare and the one that makes it much more suited for the XBLA experience, is the game's "Fight Till Dawn" mode. Similar to Gears of War's Horde Mode, this arcade-action fest has Wake fighting waves of enemies, with limited resources, hoping to survive 10 minutes to make it safely into dawn. It's not just surviving though that's important, as setting a high score, on  the modes leader boards is ultimately the task at hand. I was able to go hands-on with the game's cemetery map -- one of five available maps at launch -- during my preview. Similar to the story mode, this map exuded a great sense of fear throughout. With the difficulty of each wave building as the time wound down, managing resources while fending off each attacking horde proved as stressful as challenging. While not scary per se, this mode still was just as nerve racking as I remember some of the most tense parts of the original Alan Wake. In the end, I made it through to dawn, but my cowardly skills were highlighted by my measly two-star rating.Remedy promised tons of unlockable rewards for Fight Till Dawn mode and they hadn't ruled out the possibility for more maps in the future. But for those who find the five maps easy, there is also a Nightmare mode that, while not shown, should give even the most diehard action gamer a run for their money. It's kind of funny, when American Nightmare was first created it actually started off strictly as an arcade action game, Remedy told me. They had this new world of weapons and of monsters with a greatly enhanced combat mechanic, but no real setting to call home. Thankfully, the rich idea of Night Springs fit perfectly into place. As excited as I am to blast enemies away in Fight Till Dawn mode, an Alan Wake experience is just not complete without a story to completely mess with my head. Hopefully, the wait isn't too long this time around,as I think that just might make my head explode,
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By now, most of us know about the long and challenging path that Remedy traveled in order to see the fruition of the original Alan Wake. Spanning five years of development, the psychological action thriller was not only o...

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The latest word on Alan Wake's American Nightmare


Dec 15
// Jordan Devore
Described by Xbox World as being "significantly bigger than any episode of the original game," Alan Wake's American Nightmare will have a hub structure to its locales. Fans of Wake have, apparently, taken his disappearance an...
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Alan Wake confirmed for PC in 2012


Dec 14
// Dale North
Yesterday a Stream registry hint told us that Alan Wake might be coming to PC. Now we have the official word from Remedy Entertainment. Alan Wake is coming to PC in 2012. Nice! I can't wait to play it at maxed-out settin...
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Steam registry entry suggests fabled Alan Wake PC version


Dec 13
// Jordan Devore
We had nearly given up hope that Alan Wake would ever grace PCs, but the spotting of a Steam registry entry for the game (via NeoGAF) has me feeling pretty good. This method has been reliable enough in the past, particularly ...
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New Alan Wake teaser trailer is a tease


Nov 10
// Victoria Medina
Remember the Alan Wake teasers that have been surfacing? Well now there's a trailer to go with them. The full trailer will be premiered during the 2011 VGAs, but Spike has posted a seven second teaser of the upcoming trailer...
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Look at a picture of Alan Wake: Night Springs


Nov 08
// Jim Sterling
A single image has surfaced for Alan Wake: Night Springs, the digital follow-up to 2009's action-horror. The picture comes via everybody's favorite full-color press release, Game Informer.  Mr. Wake is looking prett...
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Remedy: Sony, Nintendo must reinvent handhelds to compete


May 24
// Jim Sterling
Alan Wake developer Remedy believes that Sony and Nintendo need to significantly overhaul their portable efforts if they're to compete against the rising popularity of smartphones and tablets. According to executive VP A...
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Rumor: Alan Wake: Night Springs coming to XBLA


May 20
// Jim Sterling
According to those always crafty ANONYMOUS SOURCES, Remedy is beavering away on a brand new Alan Wake title -- a downloadable offering known as Alan Wake: Night Springs.  The gossip suggests that Night Springs will be ba...
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The next Alan Wake is not a sequel or DLC


May 10
// Nick Chester
You know that "Alan Wake 2" reference that popped up on LinkedIn? Remedy Entertainment has confirmed that, yes, there's more Alan Wake on the way. It's just not a sequel… or downloadable content for the original game.&...
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Resume sheds some light on Alan Wake 2


May 09
// Nick Chester
What did videogame blogs talk about before LinkedIn? The most recent juicy tidbit seems to out that work on the sequel to Alan Wake may well be underway. The LinkedIn profile of an artist shows that work may have been done on...
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Remedy: Screw retailers, let's go digital


May 03
// Jim Sterling
Remedy CEO Matias Myllyrinne wants the game industry to go all-digital as quickly as possible, and he doesn't give a damn if retailers are left in the dust. They sell used games, so screw 'em, appears to be the general o...
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Remedy aims to surpass L.A. Noire's facial animation


Apr 11
// Maurice Tan
Remedy has been hard at work on some supposedly impressive facial animation technology for an upcoming project. According to Edge, the Helsinki studio is confident it can come closer to crossing the "uncanny valley" effect th...
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Death Rally already gets its first update


Apr 09
// Conrad Zimmerman
A mere week after the release of Death Rally on iOS devices, Remedy Entertainment has already released a significant update to their combat racer. In addition to fixing some bugs in the initial release and some minor im...

Review: Death Rally

Apr 06 // Maurice Tan
Death Rally (iPhone [reviewed]/iPad)Developers: Mountain Sheep, Remedy Entertainment, Cornfox & BrothersPublisher: Remedy EntertainmentReleased: March 31st, 2011MSRP: $4.99/€3.99 Racing in Death Rally is a simple matter of pushing a virtual analog stick in the direction you want to go. While the game offers a fixed-orientation camera as a default -- where you just steer your car any way the track takes you -- you can change the camera to be oriented on the car instead. That way, the track just rotates around you as you go. It's an option, but not a recommended one as you'll end up only pushing forwards and moving your thumb to the left and right to steer.Although there has been some negative feedback on the controls, I found them to be more than serviceable. Because you generally only drive at a fixed top speed -- depending on how much you have upgraded your car -- the key to winning is to learn how to make handbrake turns. Making swift motions to turn your car 90- or 180-degrees results in a small speed boost that gives you an edge over sometimes faster cars.It would've been nice if you could enlarge the virtual stick because as someone who has pretty big hands and fingers, there was a bit of a learning curve to get the hang of it. Eventually you learn not to just press your thumb down and move it around to control your car, but to shift pressure with your thumb in the direction you want to go. If you don't, your thumb will start to hurt after a while, so don't do that. Your car will come with a standard machine gun that will automatically fire forwards if there is anything to shoot at. As you progress, you can collect parts throughout races to unlock new weapons and cars. A simple touch button lets you fire special weapons: a gatling gun, shotgun, sniper rifle, mines, and a missile launcher. Within a dozen or so races you also unlock the bumper as a secondary weapon, which lets you do damage by ramming into opponents.Finishing with a good position, destroying other cars, beating your lap and track record, and destroying a 'boss' yields you money which can be spent on car and weaponry upgrades. A boss is simply a car with a portrait hovering over it, who tends to have the best AI in any race.The combat makes the races a lot of fun, and every race feels like a new opportunity to fight your way to the finish line. Although the majority of levels come in simple three-lap races, there are additional 'challenge' races that feature things like a race without weapons, a one-lap race, a one-on-one race, a race with set vehicles, or a race with a set weapon type.While there are only around five race tracks in the game, reverse and 'mixed' tracks add a lot of longevity; you're not likely to learn them all by heart by the time you 'complete' the game.Gameplay-wise, Death Rally offers fun and brief racing on the go and you can easily find yourself starting just that one additional race because it only takes around a minute to finish it. And before you know it, you've been playing for 30 minutes.However, some odd design decisions drag the game down. While an iOS game doesn't have to be simplistic or simple by nature, having no manual or tutorial at all is ridiculous. Sure, you race a car around that shoots, how hard can it be? However, the UI is filled with elements that are never properly explained.For example, you can choose between around 5 races at any time from an elegant menu that shows your car. Going into the Garage to tailor your car and weapon setup is a seamless transition through the menu. And while the choosing your load-out is as simple as it can be, races have a skull icon and a number of blocks that are supposed to indicate the difficulty of a race. Or is it?Challenges show stars, and though it's easy enough to understand that more stars equal a tougher race, the game never really feels that much more difficult. To top it off, finishing a race gives you an overview of the money you made (by winning, destroying cars, etc.) and shows a multiplier. That can be 1.0x, or 1.5x, or even 3.0x. But what makes the multiplier go up? Killing multiple enemies doesn't seem to change it, and neither does finishing first or last. I'm all for having 'hardcore' games on iOS, but I shouldn't have to spend half an hour experimenting with things just to find out what causes what. Especially because the UI has been designed to be accessible, as you can read on the game's blog, it's mindboggling that they didn't take the time to just explain the most basic things. This confusion is only confounded by the game's two progression indicators. 'Progress' shows how far from completion you are, but you have to find out for yourself that this means you have to upgrade every single weapon and car to the maximum level. 'Fame' shows something I still don't even understand. All I know is that if you place last it goes down, and if you place first it goes up. But whether destroying cars or setting new lap records has an effect on it is never explained, so you quickly end up ignoring the Fame meter altogether. Or at least, you'd try if it didn't fill up at a ridiculously slow rate after a race.While the game could've done with some basic user research to find out if people actually understand what it is they are seeing, it has no detrimental impact on the gameplay experience itself. Death Rally is a lot of fun to play, it looks great, runs smooth, and it's very addictive. Having Duke Nukem appear as a boss with a few signature lines is also a nice throwback to the original game too. But a simple future update like being able to enlarge the virtual stick, or including a manual, would really go a long way for the title; especially for an audience as wide as the Apple app store provides.As it stands, you'll easily get around 5 hours or more out of the game by simply upgrading everything and having fun while you do it. And even when you 'complete' it, Death Rally doesn't make you feel like you are done playing it. For the price, it's a great game that is polished on many levels that matter, yet strangely lacking in others.
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Ahhh Death Rally, what memories you have given me back in the day. The old Remedy logo, the Apogee splash screen, the fact that it was basically Micro Machines with guns; what wasn't there to like? Now, almost 15 years after ...

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Alan Wake finally on PC with... a themepack


Jan 18
// Maurice Tan
Microsoft released a Windows 7 themepack for Alan Wake today. Let's all download it to send a "Signal" that people still want Alan Wake on the PC, shall we? If you never used one of these before, it's just a collection of twe...
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Alan Wake dev goes back to roots with Death Rally iOS


Jan 11
// Nick Chester
Alan Wake developer Remedy Entertainment is going back to its roots, reviving its first title, Death Rally, for the iOS. The developer says car combat game is "now bigger, stronger and more vicious than ever." The teaser trailer for the game looks surprisingly gorgeous, with plenty of explosions as you'd expect. Death Rally is expected to launch on the App Store in March for iPhone and iPad.
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Motion-controlled Remedy game suggested by job listing


Nov 15
// Jordan Devore
Time and time again, we've heard Remedy talk about how great a sequel to Alan Wake would be. There's still no definitive answer as to what the studio is working on, but whatever it is, it's taking place on the same engine use...
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Remedy CEO Matias Myllyrinne was friendly enough to invite Daniel Carneiro and myself over for an interview in Cologne about all things Alan Wake. We talked about Lost, The Wicker Man, Agent Nightingale, DLC and more. As Al...

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You can print your own Alan Wake cut-out


Aug 24
// Jim Sterling
Have you always wanted a cardboard cut-out of a fictional author to look at you while you sleep? Well, as freakishly unlikely as it is, your prayers have been answered. Remedy has provided a high resolution copy of Alan Wake'...

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