If Stephen King wrote a Silent Hill game, the result would be Alan Wake. The titular character, a moody author suffering from writer's block, finds himself in a small lake town for a vacation that, like all horror novel getaways, finds him being menaced by a "Dark Presence" that takes the form of shadowy dead guys attacking in the woods at night. Bad guys get softened up with light from a flare or flashlight, then shot down with a variety of firearms. The controls are well-tuned and the graphics and sound design compliment the twists and turns of the "Lost"-esque story perfectly. That said, what's up with the almost complete lack of lip sync? The game has numerous, lengthy dialogue sequences and highly-detailed character models, but the conversations look like a poorly-translated kung-fu movie.
Photo: Microsoft Game Studios