Remedy has said Alan Wake’s universe was “rather empty” to work as an open world game as originally planned.
“We took the effort of writing the story so it was geographically and chronologically ‘correct’. Even when we knew we were doing a linear game, we wanted to keep that. I’m in great favour of having the feel of a place, the sense that the world continues,” said art director Saku Lehtinen in the latest issue of Edge.
“Rather than the painstaking work of building the world from scratch and trying to make it look like an open world, though, we went the other way. We said ‘Hey, we have a world which is, truth be told, rather empty. So let’s find interesting places that inspire us – good starting points – and then mould it in that direction.
If there’s positive stuff that looks genuine and feels right, then let’s leave it there.’ And we narrowed it down until we felt it was enough.”
Alan Wake was originally announced in 2005 as an open world title, but switched to a linear route by the time it came out on Xbox 360 in 2010 and on PC earlier this year.
Studio CTO Markus Maki added finding the middle ground between open world and linear was a “difficult compromise” to make.