User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 128 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 17 out of 128

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  1. Feb 22, 2012
    Well, it makes a lot of fun and the Horde Mode as well as the Story is pretty cool. Especially the weapons are much more better than in Alan Wake and the atmosphere is just amazing; as it used to be in an Alan Wake title. Makes much fun, looks fantastic, feels awesome and a 100% recommendation. Fair Price!

    If you like Alan Wake you will love the Nightmare!
  2. Feb 22, 2012
    My opinion having played it now: if you liked the original game, you'll like this one.

    The game tells the story of an alternative Alan Wave, which appears in the introduction of a TV show that is playing on a roadside Motel, and this show is happening in a small roadside Motel of Arizona, and in an episode of Night Springs (that Alan wrote in the past), where he must try to escape, while
    facing his nemesis, Mr. Scratch, his alter-ego.

    The gameplay follows the same principles of the original retail game, with you walking across the landscape, facing many different enemies from the shadows, with your flashlight to weaken them (LT) and a gun to kill them (RT, with a range of weapons such as guns, nail guns, signal pistols, etc.).

    Spread across the scenarios there are collectibles (manuscripts), which are also used to open special weapons caches, that contains more powerful guns; these caches are spread both in Campaign mode and in Arcade mode.

    The points of the the objectives are shown with stars, in a top screen radar, and other things like ammunition, each one with a different icon: also at the Motel that exists in this town, there is a garage where he meets characters from the previous game, and of course the classic spots below the lamps, where he regenerates and is protected by the light above.

    The graphics are very good for an XBLA game, though not having all the full refinement of the Retail version, but that's a barely noticeable deatil: also the lighting effects are good, but not as much as the original, in variations and shadows. The opening CG is made with a mixture of real shooting and CG footage, very cool indeed.

    Regarding the game's audio, it features music and performances really well done, one of the highlights in the game, plus a atmosferic narrator for the story.

    American Nightmare also features an Arcade mode, where, in many different scenarios you face Wave after Wave of enemies, with ammunition and weapons scatered around, to survive these waves (similar to Horde mode in Gears). The aim in this mode is to try to survive till dawn (there is a clock with 10 minutes on the top screen, which is the remaining time until dawn), and try to attain a maximum score, killing the enemies.

    The game, in resume, is clearer than the previous one, and the enemies and weapons are more varied, with an improved enemy AI, while maintaning the core gamplay of the original Alan Wake: the game is more than recommended for 1200MS Points, for those who enjoyed the first, which will not be disappointed at all. My score fo this one: 8,6.
  3. Feb 22, 2012
    This is real Alan Wake experience. The critic just don't get it what Remedy does. This game is filled with some great atmosphere, great shooting mechanic, it's tense and satisfying. And all that for only 1200 MS Points, it's a steal. This is a true love letter for all Alan Wake's fans out there, and for all newcomers which is a great achievement. Long live Remedy! Long live Alan Wake!
  4. Feb 26, 2012
    This is not a sequel to Alan Wake, nor is it a prequel, or really even a spinoff, for that matter. No, American Nightmare is more of an Alan Wake 1.5, a halfway point between 1 and 2. Because of this, the story, disappointingly, doesn't really deliver. While Alan hunting his evil double Mr. Scratch is an interesting idea, Mr. Scratch himself isn't really all that menacing. Also, to make up for the limited amount of areas they can put into an arcade game, the developers recycled the same three areas in a story about a time loop that really doesn't make much sense. So the story is a little lackluster, but not all is bad. The combat has really been revamped, with more weapons and more varied enemies. This keeps your encounters with the darkness from getting stale like they did in the first game. On a side note, the new, open setting of Arizona isn't quite as interesting as the creepy woods of Washington. Something completely new in this game is the Fight Till Dawn mode, in which you are put into an arena and tasked with surviving against ten minutes of nearly non-stop taken. This mode mode is actually way creepier than the campaign, and the fast arcade action is a nice change of pace. This is by no means a bad game, despite my complains, and is arguably the most impressive game on the arcade yet in terms of presentation. For $15, Alan Wake's American is definitely worth the buy, especially for Wake fans, just don't expect something quite as special as the first game. 7/10 Expand
  5. Feb 22, 2012
    After, playing the campaign I can honestly say BUY IT. The story gives Alan Wake fans the high they been looking for, but also offer a very high tense, fast pace horde mode that really gets you at the edge of your seat. All I can say is get it.........
  6. Feb 26, 2012
    It's more Alan Wake! Definitely $15 well spent in my opinion. I am enjoying every second of the game. And there is indeed quite a bit of story in there for those willing to seek it out. You have that option. I spent an hour or more exploring before hitting the first check point.

    This is a very good sign that we will indeed see Alan Wake 2. That is what every Alan Wake fan wants. And with
    the tremendous success the PC release had during its first week on Steam it is a sure bet. Expand
  7. May 24, 2012
    Nothing of value was experienced, the first game was cheapened, and generally this was one of the most tasteless and vapid games I have ever played. It was like eating a bread sandwich. The gameplay mechanics offer no challenge, the story goes nowhere, there are no characters to speak of, the delivery is nonsense and it feels nothing like the original. The main villain is like Jason Vaughees if he was played by Eddie Murphy.

    If you enjoyed the original, avoid this game. It is a complete betrayal and even taken on its own principles the story is terribly executed, the design is lazy and the combat is somehow even more boring the original. At least there you felt threatened. It also makes you play through the same three levels three times before you can finish the game. You thought Bioware took the piss recycling the same map over and over again? Try recycling your entire GAME. I award you a great, big, round fail, and may the deity of your choice offer pity, for I have none. Remedy, you have been moved off my 'must buy' list, and into the 'avoid unless world sequels with delight at passing' list. I made it just for you.
  8. Apr 11, 2012
    Two years later of the apparition of Alan Wake on Xbox 360 appear this "spin-off", and is amazing, Alan is most "wild", the story is epic, and obviusly because Alan Wake is a fantastic game. This is a great game.
  9. Oct 30, 2012
    A serviceable, but somewhat disappointing, journey into the world of Alan Wake. American Nightmare is more of a fan service than a step forward in the tale of writer Alan Wake. If you haven't played the first game, the story will be somewhat incoherent in this. If you are playing this for simply a game-play standpoint, then you are much better off playing another 3rd person shooter. That's not to say that the game-play is bad in this game, it is actually much improved and more fluid over the original Alan Wake, however it is neither the strong suit nor main attraction of Alan Wake. Story, the main pull of the original game, is not quite up to par in this iteration. It is more of a cannon story versus a sequel. While it is nice to see into the character of Mr. Scratch (the main antagonist), the remaining characters are pretty lackluster and bland compared to the original A. Wake. The other big disappointment with this game is the re-use of levels. There are only 3 levels in this game and you retread them 3 times. All of these levels take place in the desert climate of Arizona, so there's not much diversity in the scenery. I didn't find the atmosphere to be anywhere near as creepy as the original game either. Despite these complaints, it is still more Alan Wake and players of the original will appreciate the details that are squeezed out of the story and provide some extra insight. At 1200 MS points, this game is a so-so buy, but if you can pick it up at a discounted price (its been on sale numerous occasions) then it will be a great value. Outside of the single player campaign is a horde mode, however I found this to only hold my attention for 1 or 2 nights. So, overall, if treated more as a dlc versus a full blown game, American Nightmare holds its weight and is a worthy experience. If you haven't played the original, I wouldn't invest in American Nightmare. 6/10 Expand
  10. Jun 1, 2013
    A top notch game. Although I would of loved a REAL sequel, this is still a worthy of your money and time. The story is more of the same, a nice side story which expands on what you originally learn in the original game. Combat in this is absolutely fantastic. I've always loved the original feel of the combat, and it's still there in this game. Using the light to your advantage, lots of tension and action fueled combat is always entertaining and moreish. It's satisfying using a vast array of guns and equipment like flares to your advantage. Collectables aren't varied, but there's a lot of them and they're scattered to force you to explore the game, which is only a good thing. Atmosphere in this game is brilliant, sucking you in to a dark and slightly eery place. Voicing acting is slightly disappointing. Although the main character was well acted, the rest feel rushed and poorly executed. All together, a worthy experience for most gamers. Expand
  11. Mar 5, 2012
    Left unsatisfied by the answers provided in the earlier Alan Wake games? Well, here are your answers. This is a TRUE Alan Wake sequel. Reading the reviews, I thought this would be an empty arcade style game that emphasised action of the rich and twisted world of Alan Wake. I got this impression for about 20 minutes of play... but as you get deeper into the game, the ties to the previous entries (Wake + 2 DLC episodes) are revealed. A lot is answered. The game's fiction (so to speak) is built on. All the characters are there, in some form. The gameplay is very similar to the previous Wake games, and, honestly, I thought the time loop mechanic worked amazingly. The game goes out of its way to make sure it's not simply a fetch quest - sure, you revisit environments and must collect items, but each trip sends you to a new/changed area with fresh challenges. Further, the Mr. Scratch videos and overall production was amazing, better than in the original games actually. I can't recommend this to Alan Wake fans enough. You can't get the whole picture without it. Expand
  12. Feb 26, 2012
    The Remedy is right to say that Alan Wake's American Nightmare is not the sequel to the first game of the franchise. After all, much more than a new scenario, the game offers a style of play fairly different from the original experience. Fans should not be afraid of changes, because American Nightmare offers a plot of quality in the midst of action sequences and an exquisite ambiance. Something that not all titles for download are able to offer. All this, along with loyalist graphics and Arcade mode experience, makes American Nightmare one of the main titles of LIVE Arcade. Expand
  13. Feb 24, 2012
    As a follow-up, Alan Wakes´s American Nightmare surprises with a new, fresh feeling of horror in unfamiliar surroundings and with an idea for its storytelling that in the end barely graces the main tale, but still takes a lot of cues from it and even manages to give something back. So if you want to know what the hell is going on in Alan Wake, this is a new and very entertaining puzzle piece to a much larger and still quite hazy picture Expand
  14. Feb 29, 2012
    Defectos o faltas tiene como todos los productos, el modo Arcade además de los rankings online no hubiera estado nada mal incluir un multijugador Alan y Barry contra el mundo tenebroso, y la falta del doblaje, una lastima. Con todo esto y con sus grandes virtudes: gráficos, argumento, jugabilidad y el rejugable modo Arcade hacen de este Alan Wake´s American Nightmare uno de los grandes de Xbox Live Arcade apto para los fans del original como para los que busquen un juego de acción. Expand
  15. Mar 3, 2012
    This Arcade spinoff DOES what it was subject to ... Gives both Alan Wake fans and title-newbie shooter fans the ride for an estimated 5 hours and delivers the old school sci-fi mystery series episodes atmosphere (e.g Outer Limits) for both the thrill and the action! In my opinion Remedy studio managed to bring us a perfect 'DLC' episode for the price (1200 MS points). Shooting through the Story gives avid Alan Wake 'readers' the feeling and the experience they were looking forward since the last DLC ended ... and on the other hand the Horde-like challenge mode is also a great fun to make through, you only have to live long enough to see the sunrise! I personally hope though that this one episode is only a bridge to genuine Alan Wake 2 ... Keep up the good work Remedy! Thanks Expand
  16. Feb 22, 2012
    The Single-Player is Great. The main Villian Mr Scratch is oozing with Physco and Then there is the fact that whilst Still fantastic it starts to get a bit Repetitive Especially combat. Combat is more widespread and it is a lot less creepy and dark than the original's Backdrop of Bright Falls. It also has a Horde mode titled as "Fight Till Dawn" Which is great and Will pump the adrenaline right into your Veins (Especially on the harder maps) Expand
  17. Feb 27, 2012
    The Remedy is right to say that Alan Wake's American Nightmare is not the sequel to the first game of the franchise. After all, much more than a new scenario, the game offers a style of play fairly different from the original experience. Fans should not be afraid of changes, because American Nightmare offers a plot of quality in the midst of action sequences and an exquisite ambiance. Something that not all titles for download are able to offer. All this, along with loyalist graphics and Arcade mode experience, makes American Nightmare one of the main titles of LIVE Arcade. Expand
  18. Apr 14, 2012
    Excellent addition to the Alan Wake universe and a nice self contained game and story the new weapons and taken enemy types really help to make the action fresh and the fight till dawn mode is loads of fun. Download it now i hope it gets expanded too giving more reason to fight with light until the full Alan Wake 2 arrives great work Remedy.
  19. Jun 19, 2012
    This has been a completely different experience than the original Alan Wake, the first game was just epic in my opinion and i see this one as a great sequel though it could be better. The story is something that needs to be talked about, this game apparently takes place in an episode of Night Springs two years after the first game and resumes Alan's battle with Mr. Scratch. I expected the story to be less developed since the main focus is clearly action but it seems to have succeeded even though it could have explained more. The setting changed a lot, it is apparently a desert in Arizona which changes a lot from the forest in the first game. I didn't find myself to be as immersed as I was in the first game but it still does a good job. The story mode is about 4-5 hours and you play in three main areas, however, those three areas are revisited three times which is repetitive and can get annoying. A whole lot of weapons have been added giving more firepower and better alternatives of defeating enemies. The enemies themselves vary a lot more than in the first game and are quite tougher this time making the need of better weapons critical. An arcade "survival" mode has been added which consists of fighting hordes of enemies for ten minutes and then you unlock another map, there are ten maps total and there is a high replay value. Overall this is a great game that, despite some story flaws, manages to stand as a proper sequel to the original, Remedy has done well and I would love to see what they have for us in the future. Expand
  20. Feb 22, 2012
    Great XBOX Arcade game! However, I did find that having to find manuscript pages to fill in the back story, left the over all delivery of the story to be a bit disjointed. Though I found the Rod Serling sounding narrator effective, making Night Springs very reminiscent of The Twilight Zone, I prefer Alan Wakes' voice actors narration in the first game. The combat is improved thanks to a larger selection and more dynamic weapons, and the evade maneuver works as well as ever! The environments work well, but the games trippy, surreal atmosphere has been toned down and the game loses some of the tension because of it. In the end, this is a great effort on behalf of Remedy considering the constraints of a down-loadable title. As a huge fan of the original Alan Wake and previous Writer and Signal add on's, I only hope that American Nightmare sales well enough to warrant the full blown sequel Alan Wake deserves! Expand
  21. Feb 24, 2012
    The first Alan wake game was one of suspense, horror and enough twists to keep you on the end of your seat from the moment you entered the start screen, to the point of fruition upon the entire premise of the story. But where does this leave us with American Nightmare. Well this not a direct sequel to the first game, but it does fill in a few of the blanks that were left hanging with our first instalment.

    American Nightmare has also received an upgrade of sorts. The original game was very heavy on the atmospheric horror genre with a hint of 3rd person action, allowing for a casual blend of a psychological thriller that would leave you wanting more. However, they seemed to have flipped this one around, showing the 3rd person action with a hint of iconic American films history. It still has the underlying horror aspect but when put it side by side with the first game it doesn't even seem to compare. 'The reason for this you might ask?', simple, it is no longer within the Bright Falls barrier that the first game depicted so well, instead it takes place in TV show known in the first game as 'Night Springs'.

    This new Live Arcade game also shares some similar features that were held in the first adventure. You will still have to collect manuscript pages, listen to radio broadcasts, watch TV's and spend time battling hordes of enemies from small to large. However, as with every new game, we have new features. These include an array of new methods to further utilise the manuscript pages to not just read and provide a more vivid story but to also twist your fate and further enhance each situation. Watch as 'Mr Scratch' attempts to break Alan through sections of gripping TV shows and game play alike. Not only do we have all this but new enemies to top off the roster. There are 5 new enemies to contend with -- Splitters, Grenadiers, Spiders, Hulking Grinder and the Crow Man, each providing a brand new style of play. This makes each encounter a new and different struggle for survival. One last thing also on the table are the range of new weapons. Where as before you would have a great deal of difficulty with ammo consumption and managing each situation depending on your supply count, now you have everything practically on a plate with ammo box's regularly featuring on walls or in the back of vehicles. Good or bad thing, I will let you make your own mind up about that one.

    My score for this game will have to be high but I still have some quarrels with the execution in comparison to the first game. 86%

    It lost that extra 14% purely on the shift in game play mechanics. Where as the first one gripped me with scary melodies and well timed cinematic scenes, this one just had a massively American film style, something that I would rather have seen in a game other than Alan Wake. Remedy for me still hold strong as one of my favourite companies but their lean toward the darker story lines and well grafted plot devices, as if almost deep in a gritty and harsh novel by one of the greats, really helps to keep me drawn into this company over any other.
  22. Feb 23, 2012
    The story of Alan wake was goood , but it was too easy. I dont understand why there is no nightmare mode in story too. But the game was still very great. Fight till dawn was good too.
  23. Feb 29, 2012
    A great direction for the franchise, although I do I hope that we get to see Bright Falls again! The story was amazing and I was very satisfied with the ending.
  24. Mar 1, 2012
    Alan wakes nightmare is a very good game the torch you get isn't that good but its ok the wepons are cool u get the usual guns like smg assault rifle but u also get nail guns and things like that wich are very effective and work well against the demonic forces of the dark that you have to face. All in all a good game and fun arcade mode is multiplayer and very cool u get a few different maps and are able to go on a killing spree with your matyes very fun. Expand
  25. Apr 22, 2012
    American Nightmare is not a full sequel, but its OK because for an Arcade title its really big, beautiful and worth your money, Remedy made a great job the game looks as good as the first game there are more weapons this time and free roaming takes bigger part i absolutely enjoyed it for an arcade title and i recommend it to all of the fans plus there is a survival mode that works well :P
  26. May 22, 2012
    I liked the actions and gameplay elements .. i don't liked the plot of it .. but its nice to play ... It doesn't have to do anything with Alan wake .... its just like an add-on .. but gameplay is yet entertaining .. 8/10 from my side

Generally favorable reviews - based on 72 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 72
  2. Negative: 0 out of 72
  1. May 30, 2012
    While not a true sequel, Alan Wake's American Nightmare does a fine job of expanding on the franchise's universe. It may not have the depth of exposition of the original game, but for 1,200 Microsoft points ($15), there's enough here to please fans and newcomers alike.
  2. Apr 12, 2012
    The combination of light-hearted side-story and new ideas results in a title that is fun to play, even with the repetition of stages. [May 2012, p.64]
  3. 60
    It's sadly spoilt by a lack of content and too much repetition. [Issue#83, p.98]