First off, I loved Alan Wake. Absolutely loved it. The game had a couple flaws (mainly a story that didn’t quite wrap itself up and the inability to be very scary) but those were minor problems in a very incredible and immersive game. So naturally I was very excited for the first piece of DLC to continue the story, and boy, did I come away impressed.
What makes Alan Wake: The Signal practically better than the original game itself is that it’s not trying to stretch itself out to add length to the game. It’s basically just taking you from crazy set piece to crazy set piece for about two hours, and it does not in any way get old, but rather stays completely interesting the entire time. I think the reason I liked it even better despite loving Alan Wake was because it was so incredibly trippy that I had my jaw drop many times. Alan Wake was pretty trippy in and of itself, but it’s nothing compared to this piece of DLC for it. Saying anything at all about the story and events would hurt the plot for anybody who hasn’t played the game, but know that it’s intense.
So are there any problems with it? It does fix the horror issue in Alan Wake to a degree (trippy events make the game a bit scarier, if not by much), and the gameplay is pretty unchanged and stays simple, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. If I have any complaints, it’s just that it feels way too short. Two hours for $7 is pretty standard I suppose (though free if you bought Alan Wake new), but it feels like the DLC ends just as it’s really picking up (not that any moment of it is boring). I’m really excited for the next and last piece of DLC, The Writer, but at the same time I just wish there was more here because it was so fantastic, and though The Signal was cool, it really didn’t answer many questions leftover from the main game, choosing instead to pose a few more. Still, if you liked Alan Wake and want to continue the story, this is a necessary buy. Check it out.