Is Alan Wake 2 a Next-Gen Xbox Launch Game?

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Alan Wake 2, although a certainty, remains the subject of speculation. As we get closer to another generation of hardware, the idea of it being developed for the next Xbox is one that gains credibility.

Alan Wake was something of a phenomenon before it was even released. Happily, once the game finally hit the streets the anticipation (and overlong waiting) was justified. Remedy showed a considerable amount of design maturity in moving from their original open world to a more directed experience. Alan Wake worked.

After a couple of rounds of DLC, thoughts now turn to the sequel. Despite a fair amount of smoke blowing on all sides it seems a picture is emerging of how Alan Wake 2 is likely to shake down: in my opinion, an exclusive for a next generation Xbox.

Developer Remedy previously confirmed to the Joystiq blog that it was working a “next Wake installment” that will be more than DLC. More recently a rumor from Xbox World magazine suggested that Remedy does have Alan Wake 2 in the works – but for the next Xbox.

Joystiq spoke with Microsoft Studios chief Phil Spencer earlier this year, who debunked these rumors, saying “the stuff they’re doing now they wanted to incubate internally. Like I said, I don’t think they’ve signed it with anybody.” He went on to underline the fact that Microsoft Studios had no next-gen games in development and was concentrating on Xbox 360 and Kinect software.

That notwithstanding, the idea of Alan Wake 2 for the next Xbox would make good sense in terms of timing. Although of course the developer and platform holder won’t want to be drawn into talking about it, as a new console takes shape there will be some games that are held off to release with it at (or soon after) launch. Having Alan Wake in the next-gen Xbox’s (Next-Box?) launch war chest would certainly offer Microsoft a degree of comfort.

Having a limited amount of time to play and being someone not usually drawn into horror survival games, I have a soft spot for Alan Wake as the one game in the genre that I’ve played. Something about the quality of storytelling and visuals combined (with a great Alan Wake press trip) and meant that this was one of the few games I completed this year.

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