Following the eyes-only demo of Alan Wake, Remedy lead writer Sam Lake explained the game's levels are structured like a television series season. "The story is divided into episodes," Lake told the small group of journalists viewing the extended Microsoft E3 2009 keynote demo. Prior to the beginning of each level the game will showcase a video Lake described as a "Previously On... segment," to remind players of the important story elements from previous episodes and what relates to the next level the player will experience.
"It's not a level based game," Lake told the group. "We have a large game world, but the story guides you. So, there is a logical pathway for the player." Lake also explained that, while Alan Wake will tell one linear story, the game will feature "a lot of exploration" for players interested in "digging deeper" into the back story of the universe.