Alan Wake Remastered – Test, Action-Adventure, PC, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X



Alan, Control and AWE

In addition, there are persistent and credible rumors that a second part by Alan Wake in collaboration with Epic Games Publishing is in production. Speaking of which: Control is also to be continued and expanded as is well known (we reported). But back to the revised new edition. Alan Wake Remastered includes the main game from 2010 as well as the two expansions “The Signal” and “The Writer”, which can be selected directly in the main menu under “Follow”. The more action-oriented offshoot Alan Wake’s American Nightmare is disappointingly not included in the remaster, which costs almost 30 euros. A complete package would of course have been desirable.

Did someone say twin peaks?

The base game, which is more than ten years old, is an action adventure with horror elements and mysterious incidents that, at best, are reminiscent of Twin Peaks, the X-Files or the works of Stephen King. It’s about a thriller writer with writer’s block who travels to Bright Falls to relax and meets obsessed people there who can be protected by the darkness and cannot be attacked directly. Again and again he experiences extremely strange things that will not be discussed further here, because the story, the eccentric ideas and the staging of these are among the great strengths of the title. The same applies to the dense and convincing atmosphere that surrounds the location. Alan Wake, on the other hand, does not pull out trees in a playful way. There is no active dialogue, no challenging puzzles, or disturbing psychological terror. The action is often intense, but wears out too quickly due to constant repetitions and too few opponent variations.

Mood and story are the great strengths of Alan Wake.

Jörg wrote in his test of the Xbox 360 version at the time: “The story is good and its eerie potential flashes in its best moments, but unlike Eternal Darkness, Silent Hill or Project Zero, this horror will not be remembered as a highlight After twelve hours and six episodes, the finale leaves no thoughtful emotion, but a stale aftertaste. ”

Remaster-Macken

In terms of content and play, Alan Wake Remastered has not changed compared to the original, apart from homeopathic adjustments to the in-game advertising. It is essentially the same game, but has been technically refurbished by the British studio d3t. The studio, which was also responsible for the remasters of Shenmue I & II and Mafia 2 (Definitive Edition), has realized a decent, but not outstanding, remaster. So we noticed in several cutscenes, even on PlayStation 5. We did not experience any crashes. The sound mix also seemed a bit chaotic. In the first cut scenes, the dialogues weren’t always understandable, while chaotic battles sometimes degenerate into a cacophony. Incidentally, the remaster uses the well-known German voice output – along with its ups and downs.

Revised graphics

The revision of the graphics has turned out good, but for some reason d3t forgot to support HDR. It’s a shame, higher contrasts would certainly have enhanced the atmospheric passages. Otherwise, Bright Falls looks mainly sharper than the rather faded original, which was then running in 960×540 with 4xMSAA. Clearer and sharper textures reveal more details, the level geometry has become more extensive and in some areas new objects have even been added. The jump is still clear, especially in terms of sharpness – especially since the end result comes along without annoying tearing.

Alan's new character model doesn't cut a good figure in every scene.

Alan’s new character model doesn’t cut a good figure in every scene.

The lighting has also been completely redesigned, which can be seen, for example, when objects are shaded in complex scenes (ambient occlusion). Overall, the basic tone of the remaster is a bit lighter than the original game, which is a bit damaging to the eerie atmosphere at night. Even the new trees, bushes and co. Do not always get along so well with the lighting and look too fiddly or not dense enough. Sometimes there are also issues related to the level of detail. Some plants appear too late on the scene when they come closer. Last but not least, the redesign of the main character’s exterior looks rather inappropriate to shabby in many scenes, depending on the exposure.

On consoles and PC

Despite the revision of the graphics, you can already see the age of the game world.

Despite the graphic overhaul, you can see the age of the game world.

Depending on the computing power of the platforms, there is a greater visibility or display distance (PC> PS5 / XBX> XBS> PS4> One). According to ElAnalistaDeBits, the same applies to the shadow quality. According to the Spanish bit analysts, the game runs natively on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X in 1440p with 60 fps. It will be upscaled to 4K later. On Xbox Series S it is 1080p at 60 fps. The Xbox One X uses 1440p with 30 fps. The Xbox One manages 900p with 30 fps. The 60 frames per second make a noticeable difference on the new consoles compared to the 360 ​​version and ensure a smoother gaming experience.

Native 4K resolution is possible on the PC and, thanks to fps boost with DLSS, the frame rate can be increased by a factor of 2 in maximum resolution. According to Nvidia, the remaster should already run on an RTX 2060 in 4K with over 60 fps if you use the DLSS performance mode (trailer). The remaster does not support ray tracing features that Control has used so brilliantly and impressively. On the PlayStation 5, DualSense functions should be offered, which were not particularly noticeable in the test run.