Remedy Entertainment’s Alan Wake 2 is officially launching on 17 October 2023, as revealed in the recent PlayStation Showcase. The news, while exciting, hardly comes as a surprise – given Alan Wake voice actor Matthew Porretta recently flagged the October launch date in a podcast interview.
Regardless of this surprise reveal, there was plenty more to analyse in this first look at gameplay. As revealed in the trailer, the story of Alan Wake has grown darker since the original game, with more terrifying shadow creatures and body horror lurking in the corners of his world.
‘I’m trapped here, in this nightmare. I write to escape. Every word is a step forward,’ Wake says in the new trailer’s voiceover, as a mystery man is dragged through a wood by strange beings. Wake then appears, briefly, gasping for air. Notably, he wears a pristine suit – which differs greatly from his previous, shabby appearance.
Read: Remedy provides update on Alan Wake 2 and announces TV series
This glimpse segues into an introduction for two FBI agents, who appear to be investigating the disappearance of agent Robert Nightingale, who was taken by the encroaching darkness in the original Alan Wake.
One of these agents is named Anderson, and the other is played by Remedy’s creative director Sam Lake – also known for being the likeness of Max Payne. Both appear to stumble upon Alan Wake’s story in the search for Nightingale, and soon become embroiled in the larger narrative.
In Alan Wake mythology, the writer has been imbued with the power to write reality to life – although this reality is warped and changed by dark forces, and often comes out wrong. Given this, it’s likely a grim fate awaits these agents, as they become part of Wake’s living manuscript.
Players will be able to play as both Wake and Anderson in this adventure, fighting strange and monstrous creatures as the manuscript evolves.
In the final scene of the trailer, Anderson discovers Wake, seemingly dredged up from Cauldron Lake in Bright Falls. What this means for his story is unclear – but it certainly presents plenty of intrigue that leads into this next, highly-anticipated chapter.
Update: A blog post from Sam Lake has now revealed more about the upcoming horror adventure, and what to expect from Wake and Anderson’s shared journey:
‘We have two very different worlds to explore, two parallel stories to follow, and two playable hero characters: Alan Wake, our tortured writer of course, but also a new Remedy hero, FBI Agent Saga Anderson, a profiler with a reputation for solving impossible cases with uncanny leaps of logic.’
‘Our two heroes are very different from each other yet connected in multiple unexpected ways. They are both critical parts of this story and experience … This is only the beginning. We are barely scratching the surface with what we are showing you in the coming weeks. I’m bursting to rave about all of it, and we will talk about some of it later, but a lot you will have to discover yourself by playing it later this year.’
Alan Wake 2 launches for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and Windows PC on 17 October 2023.